Thursday, August 31, 2017

Things millennials love about the library | Podcast

Libraries | Millennials | Public services | Podcast


A library at a secondary school in London. - 
Millennials are renowned for loving old things — vinyl records, retro bicycles, film cameras. What about old institutions?

Despite being the generation that grew up hand-in-hand with technology, it turns out the millennial generation — those between ages 18 and 35 — love public libraries.

They're more likely than baby boomers or Gen Xers to visit the local public library or a public bookmobile. A Pew Research Center study found that 53 percent of millennials in the U.S. had used their public library at least once in the year prior to the survey.

What have libraries been doing that's attracting so many young adults? Marketplace Weekend staff discovered a few exciting things: Read more...

How To Be a Book Lover on a Budget | BookRiot

Books | Budget | AudioBooks

by Rah Carter August 30, 2017

The book world can be full of snobbery. BookTube videos will tell us that if we can afford to pay for internet we can afford to buy every book we read. Never mind that the books I read per month are worth more than the price of my internet bill.  But this is part of an attitude that overflows with blind privilege and callousness. Many of us on tight budgets can’t afford to buy every, or even any, book that we read. Or we don’t have the space to keep them. Or we don’t have access to good bookstores. Or other circumstances that prevent us from living up to this bookish ideal. And that is okay. It is okay to read and love books in a way that fits your personal economic and social circumstances. Anyone who suggests otherwise is a jerk.

First let’s talk about libraries, the most obvious port of call when looking at reading on a budget. If you live within easy access of a public library, they can be an absolute lifeline. While homeless, I found that libraries are warm, dry, comfortable, free places to go. [This is also useful if you don’t have heating/air-conditioning in your home]. I could use their electricity for free to charge my phone. There is access to free WiFi and computers and a quiet place to study or relax. Many libraries also offer classes for adults and activities for children. And then there’s all the books, audiobooks, music, DVD’s, games, newspapers to read, borrow, and play for free or a very low fee. 

If the public library isn’t accessible for you, or you want more choice, there are other options.

save money on booksRead more

A Back-to-School Reading List for Teachers Who Didn’t Expect Trump | BookRiot

Reader's Advisory | Tolerance | Bibliotherapy

by Sara Ullery August 31, 2017

It’s time to go back to school, and I’m terrified. Now to be clear, this is nothing new– I’m always nervous at the beginning of the school year. The night before my first day of kindergarten I couldn’t sleep, so I woke up my mom and she made me fold clothes to help get my mind off my nerves. I remember folding bras, but not knowing how to fold a bra, because you totally don’t fold bras, FYI. The next day when I had to actually go to school (I was afternoon kindergarten) I cried, so my mom had to stay and I sat on her lap during circle time. It got a little better as the years went on, but I’m a naturally nervous person who cared a lot about school, so I always had a tight stomach and twitchy hands on the first day.....

I added this one after Charlottesville, and it seems very prescient now. Where is this white nationalism coming from? This book came from an article that Carol Anderson had written for the Washington Post after Ferguson, when so many people were so focused on “black rage.” Her answer was: no, every time the African American community made progress, the white majority swooped in and found a way to take it away. Why isn’t anybody talking about white rage?
Read full article

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Bookshelves and Tips for Organising a Book Collection | Bookriot

Books | Reading

Ah, the perennial problem: too many books and too little space. What to do when, once again, your bookshelves are full and not every book has a proper home? The topic of book organising is one we’ve covered before (on unusual bookshelves, tips and steps on organising your collection, and ways to organise your books other than alphabetically), but given that this seems to be an ongoing dilemma, I thought it was a topic worth revisiting. 

Organising a collection

Historically, public libraries were established for the creation of an enlightened citizenry and for the purposes of disseminating and archiving knowledge. Contemporary libraries have shifted in focus and exhibit multiple functions and purposes, including leisure and entertainment. This is evident in not only the content of their collections, but also in the order and display of collections. This also speaks to issues of power and knowledge: the power inherent in curation and display of knowledge, and the ability to influence which books are borrowed and read. How do librarians decide which classification system to use? How easy is it for serendipitous discovery? The way books are shelved and displayed affect how readers can find them; a library is not simply a collection of books, but a collection of books ordered in such a way that items can be found. Read more...

Monday, August 28, 2017

3,700-year-old Babylonian tablet rewrites the history of maths - and shows the Greeks did not develop trigonometry

Science | Mathematics | Rare books & manuscripts

The tablet is broken and probably had more rows, experts believe  Credit: UNSW 
A 3,700-year-old clay tablet has proven that the Babylonians developed trigonometry 1,500 years before the Greeks and were using a sophisticated method of mathematics which could change how we calculate today.

The tablet, known as Plimpton 332, was discovered in the early 1900s in Southern Iraq by the American archaeologist and diplomat Edgar Banks, who was the inspiration for Indiana Jones.

The true meaning of the tablet has eluded experts until now but new research by the University of New South Wales, Australia, has shown it is the world’s oldest and most accurate trigonometric table, which was probably used by ancient architects to construct temples, palaces and canals. Read more...

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

How to get free Kindle books with your library card | WIRED

E-books | Library services | Digital resources

Getty Images
by Jordan McMahon | GEAR | 08.22.17

Your book club meets next month, but you’re just too busy to run down to Barnes and Noble to pick up Infinite Jest. Sure, you could order it on Amazon, but it's way too heavy to lug around in your backpack and your bookshelf is looking pretty crammed. That’s OK, though! With a library card, an internet connection, and an e-reader, you can download the book—for free!—without ever leaving your house.

First, you'll need a library card. If you don't already have one, visit your local branch to get one. Then, use your credentials to access your library's e-book collection. Many libraries use OverDrive, a cross-platform service with millions of e-books and audiobooks. Scroll through OverDrive's catalogue in your browser, or download the Libby app from OverDrive to scroll through the selection on your phone.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Jane Austen's facts and figures – in charts | The Guardian

Fiction | British literature | Jane Austen

Photograph: Adam Frost, Jim Kynvin and Amy Watt

12 Books to Celebrate the Solar Eclipse | Off the Shelf

Solar eclipse | Reader's advisory | Books

 by Erin Glaaen| August 21, 2017

On August 21, all of North America will be given the opportunity to view one of nature’s most awe-inspiring sights—a solar eclipse. While from our offices here in New York we’ll only see a partial eclipse, we’re still celebrating this celestial event with a list of some of our favorite “sun” and “moon” books!

by Paula McLain

From the author of THE PARIS WIFE, a historical novel about a woman ahead of her time. Following her untraditional childhood in Kenya, Beryl Markham defies gender norms to ultimately become a record-setting aviator, all while caught up in a passionate love triangle with safari hunter Denys Finch Hatton and Karen Blixen.

12 Books to Celebrate the Solar Eclipse: Get your eclipse glasses and your reading glasses.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Curriculum for White Americans to Educate Themselves on Race and Racism–from Ferguson to Charleston | Bibliography

Citizenship and Social Justice | Race & Racism | Curriculum

by Jon Greenberg  | July 10, 2015

When teaching about race and racism, I invite participants to consider the following analogy: Think of racism as a gigantic societal-sized boot.

Which groups do you think are fighting the hardest against this boot of racism?” I ask them. Invariably, participants of diverse races answer that those fighting hardest to avoid getting squashed by the boot are people of Color. (Keep in mind that I don’t ask this question on day one of our study of race. Rather, participants come to this conclusion after exploring the concept of White privilege and studying the history of race and racism in the United States through multiple sources and perspectives.)

If that’s true,” I continue, “then who do you think is wearing the boot?” The participants’ answer (though it often only reluctantly hits the air): White people.

If that’s true, then whose responsibility is it to stop the boot from squashing them? The people of Color already pushing upward and resisting the boot? Or the people wearing the boot–consciously or not–who contribute to a system that pushes downward?

Everyone has a role in ending racism, but the analogy shows how little sense it makes for only those facing the heel-end of oppression to do all the work. It’s time for White America to take on a far bigger role in taking off the boot. 


Personal archiving : preserving our digital heritage Ed. Donald T. Hawkins | Review

Digital preservation | Archiving | Institutional repositories 

Reviewer:  Stephanie L. Gross, MSLIS

Personal archiving : preserving our digital heritagePersonal archiving : preserving our digital heritage by Donald T. Hawkins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Reviewer bio:

I am an academic librarian whose primary responsibility is to oversee the electronic reserves component of Springshare LibGuides. Recently I was appointed to serve on the task group to explore, report and advice the establishment of an institutional repository at my university. Having already read much literature concerning IR, I have begun widening my reading to include material that examines IR and its various components from a variety of viewpoints, academic, technical and personal.


This book is an anthology created by specialists in libraries, archives and technology. It is a rich, yet succinct, volume compiled as a primer for lay individuals who are involved in archiving personal material. Much of the focus is on preserving, organizing and sharing memorabilia. However, true to expectation, an equal emphasis is given to the preservation of digital files from various formats. Some attention is devoted to records management, although that is from a more introductory, philosophical perspective. What I believe to be the strength of this work is its practical advice to both lay and professionals alike. It is specific and technical enough to satisfy academic librarians who are not trained as archivists. Often we are tasked with aiding and guiding library users (students and faculty) in the preservation of their personal data. Those who are interested in understanding specific aspects of establishing and maintaining an institutional repository, including the compilation and promotion of best practices will certainly need to research further. However, this handbook does indeed list and annotate various resources (e.g. Library of Congress, Internet Archives) which is extremely helpful. There are two chapters dedicated to the preservation of email from faculty, scholars and researchers. Much is made of the chronic conundrum of “store and ignore”, benign negligence, concerning the backing up of files and precious data. The mandate to keep up with current technology, upgrading equipment and the appropriate hardware and software is underscored. (A pitch for able institutions to take on this responsibility is made, especially regarding work by scholars and communities.) Budgeting is given sufficient space to gain an appreciation of the magnitude of the demands on resources, both monetary and human. The final chapters look into the future, including intelligent discussions and projections relating to issues of ownership, copyright and social media. Although various software firms and websites are mentioned by name and have already disappeared by the time of this writing, their absence does not diminish the usefulness of their mention. The principles and philosophy of the services remain valid into the present.

Recommended audience:

Public libraries, academic libraries, special libraries, archives, museums

Recommended added subject heading:

Institutional repositories.
Digital libraries.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google by John Palfrey [review]

Library advocacy | Digitization | Libraries | User experience | Book review

BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of GoogleBiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google by John Palfrey

Reviewer: Stephanie L. Gross, MSLIS, MATESOL
August 16, 2017
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Reviewer bio:
I am an academic librarian whose main responsibility has been to establish and maintain a large database for electronic reserves. I have a solid background in public service, and have mentored library school students and recent graduates for over 10 years. I am conversant in issues relating to access and technology relating to digitization of materials as well as those born-digitally. Since I follow library news on a daily basis, I read this book more as a review of the known, while noting sources for future use. Most of those concerned digitization of material and aspects relating to institutional repositories. A second focus was based on a new work responsibility, that of personal librarian to undergraduate honors students.

This volume was written by a "feral" librarian with a law degree. It included the major areas where and how libraries are ever-relevant today: users, spaces, platforms, hacking, networks, preservation, education and copyright. Noteworthy highlights for me were the discussions of how some librarians and advocates are reinventing libraries while acknowledging their tradition roles in democratic society. Public, academic, school and special libraries were included. The ‘hybrid-ness’ of libraries is emphasized, along with the innovative factor of digitization of a variety of materials. Risks are involved when print is not saved to backup data. “Data rot” happens when technology fails, but also when newer forms outpace older, obsolete ones. Budgets are stretched to accommodate both digital and analog materials. The author calls for the ‘collaboration’ among librarians, the establishment of library networks, consortia, and private as well as public funding. The conundrum of copyright, data rights and collection policies was briefly examined.

Additional Subject headings might include:

Digital libraries
Web archiving
Digital preservation
Archival materials – Digitization
Library materials -- Digitization

View all my reviews

Monday, August 14, 2017

Eulogy for the Information Age: The Future is Impact Not Access

New Librarianship | Impact | Access |

 RD Lankes

On Racism, Ignorance, and Librarianship | RD Lankes

Librarianship | Racism | Activism | Advocacy

RD Lankes August 13, 2017

On Racism, Ignorance, and Librarianship

I begin this post by condemning the racists, white supremacist, and Nazi actions in Charlottesville.

The past few days have been extremely troubling, and left me wondering what I can do. I then remembered I was asked that exact question after the Charlie Hebdo attack in France. I put together this post:

This morning I re-read it and while I stand by it, I don’t think it went nearly far enough, and I need to amend it.



Thursday, August 10, 2017

Jeff Bezos Should Put His Billions Into Libraries

Advocacy | Philanthropy | Public Libraries

by Susan Crawford | Backchannel | 09 August 2017

Ira Gay Sealy/Getty Images
Imagine that you are Jeff Bezos. For four hours two weeks ago, you were the richest person in the world. And though Wall Street knocked you down a notch, pretty much everyone thinks it’s inevitable that you’re going to be number one again. You’re starting to be aware of the smell of the tar pits and you’re casting about for a way to put all that loot to some good. You're eying the Gates-Buffet Giving Pledge and thinking that if you donate half your fortune it should make a difference. You're comfortable with making older but meaningful institutions great again.
So far, you’ve concentrated on things that might benefit our distant successors—space travel, cancer treatments, AI, and a clock that will keep running for 10,000 years. But you want to do something more immediate. You say you want your philanthropic activity “to be helping people in the here and now—short term—at the intersection of urgent need and lasting impact.” You are open to suggestions–so much so that you even recently tweeted a “request for ideas.”  Read more...

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

25,000+ 78RPM Records Now Professionally Digitized & Streaming Online: A Treasure Trove of Early 20th Century Music

Streaming Music | Internet Archive | The Great 78 Project

by Josh Jones August 9, 2017

Every recording medium works as a metonym for its era: the term “LP” conjures up associations with a broad musical period of classic rock ‘n’ roll, soul, doo-wop, R&B, funk, jazz, disco etc.; we talk of the “CD era,” dominated by dance music and hip-hop; the 45 makes us think of jukeboxes, diners, and sock-hops; and the cassette, well... at least one subgenre of music, what John Peel called “shambling,” jangly, lo-fi pop, came to be known by the name “C86,” the title of an NME compilation, short for “Cassette, 1986.” (Readers of the magazine had to clip coupons and send money by postal mail to receive a copy of the tape.) Read more...

Save your local! Should volunteers help keep our public libraries open?

Public libraries | UK | Volunteers

Alison Flood  | Tuesday 8 August 2017

Kensal Rise Library in London, where volunteers have set up a community library. Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian    
Readers checking a book out of the village library might not immediately notice much of a difference, but Congresbury is the latest public library to haven been handed over “to the community”. You may be used to libraries being run by volunteers – maybe your local is – but this structure is relatively new. Over the last decade, as many libraries began closing across the UK due to swingeing cuts to local authority funding by central government – 121 libraries closed last year alone – some have instead been handed over by councils to the community to run.

Since librarian Ian Anstice began charting the cuts to UK libraries on his campaigning website Public Libraries News in 2010, 500 of the UK’s 3,850 remaining libraries have now been taken over, at least in part, by volunteers. “I’ve been looking at the count going up steadily for the last few years,” says Anstice. “In 2010, there were a handful – perhaps 10 in the whole country. So this is quite a staggering change.”  Read more:

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

8 Ways to Become a Library Catalog Power User

Library Catalog | Public Libraries | How-to | Info Lit

This is a guest post from Abby Hargreaves. Abby is a New Hampshire native living and working as a Children’s Librarian in Washington, D.C. She fulfills the gamut of the librarian stereotype with a love of cats, coffee, and crocheting (and she likes a good run of alliteration). Her favorite color is yellow.

Sample Catalog Record
By Tomwsulcer (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons
Whether you’re searching your local library catalog from home or looking for items while in-house, you’re probably overlooking some cool features in your library catalog. When I’m working the reference desk at the library and a visitor asks about the availability of materials on a particular topic, one of my favorite things to do is show them some tricks so they walk away not only with what they need, but with a solid grasp on how to make the catalog work for them in the future. 

Libraries use different software systems, so all of these features might not be available at your local library. Librarians and administrative teams often appreciate feedback on catalog systems, however, so if you see something you like, talk to your librarian about adding it. Read more...

Monday, August 7, 2017

The World’s Most Glamorous Librarian | Podcast

Women librarians | Special librarians | African-American History

07-27-17 Annotated | Bookriot

 In this episode: the life of Belle De Costa Greene, the most glamorous and influential librarian in early 20th Century America, who kept a life-long
secret that could have ended her career.

See also  :

Belle da Costa Greene in Wikipedia

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Anyone With A Library Card Can Now Stream Thousands Of Feature Films, Including The Criterion Collection

Public libraries | NYPL | Streaming media

Vivre Sa Vie, 1962

In July, LAist announced that you could stream hundreds of movies from the Criterion Collection for free if you had a Los Angeles Public Library card. We immediately reached out to the New York Public Library inquiring about our own hidden benefits as library card holders, and at the time they did not offer access to Kanopy's streaming service, which the LAPL uses. But lo and behold, they have now decided to add it (you're welcome?)—starting Friday August 4th, anyone with a library card (both NYPL and Brooklyn Public Library) will have access to hundreds of movies. Here's what you need to know....

Don't have a library card? You can get one instantly through the NYPL's SimplyE app; that card will get you immediate access to hundreds of thousands of NYPL e-books, but for physical materials and any other databases (like Kanopy), you will need to go to a branch, and "upgrade" your e-card to a full access library card.
More information on getting a NYPL card can be found here; and more on getting a BPL card can be found here.