November 29, 2007
Interesting Development in MIT's Open Courseware Initiative
An interesting outgrowth of MIT's open courseware initiative, an outreach to high schools highlighting the most useful and relevant materials in their collection.
Kudos to Patricia Anderson
Patricia had a very nice mention in David Rothman's blog, davidrothman.net - Blog Archive - Social Technologies for eHealth (presentation slides), one of the most read and most influential blogs in health sciences librarianship. The recognition is well deserved, and exemplifies the advantages to sharing materials through slideshare and other social networking sites.
November 26, 2007
Courant Blog noted in Chronicle
November 25, 2007
AA/Ypsi Reads Program
"The Eighth Promise," by William Poy Lee. Book emphasizes humanity of Chinese and was selected with intention of bridging two worlds. Article from Ann Arbor News tell story about choice made by Rachel Cheng, UM SI grad and now librarian at EMU:
November 21, 2007
The irony is that I can't access the journal - the print copy hasn't come in yet and UM's electronic is only available through 2006.
Having past experience with labor-intensive manual editing and uploading of lecture podcasts, I'm delighted with this development. I just wish it had come along 5 years ago.
Paul Farmer isn't the only advocate for global health care
Individuals and organizations are recognizing that we're all on this shrinking planet together, and there's no longer any such thing as an "isolated" health issue.
November 16, 2007
Thoughts on the "Patchwork" Library of the Web
The New Yorker‘s Anthony Grafton begins a rumination on the future of the library by evoking “an old and reassuring story: bookish boy or girl enters the cool, dark library and discovers loneliness and freedom.” Now that many librarians are tasked with putting books online, not just depositing them in stacks, is that notion of the library as public space still resonant?
Mr. Grafton attempts to answer that question by tracing the intellectual history of Google’s and Microsoft’s library-scanning projects all the way back to the third millennium B.C. It’s an interesting tactic, and it leads the writer to a less Utopian take on the Web-as-library than some digitization advocates have posited:
November 15, 2007
The new librarians
And the new university librarian at McMaster came from Wayne State University in Detroit!
Meet the risk-taking scholars who are shaking things up while they build tomorrow’s academic library
With its faded orange carpet, rows and rows of dusty stacks, and old-school study carrels, McMaster University’s H.G Thode Library of Science and Engineering looks like a place purposed with preserving the 1970s. But the future isn’t far away – and Jeffrey Trzeciak, the school’s new university librarian, can see it already.
“Here, here and here. This is where the plasma-screen monitors will go,” says Mr. Trzeciak, pointing to specific points along the curving red-brick wall that circumscribes the back of the building.
Soon an army of workers and the $4 million raised through a capital campaign will gut and utterly transform Thode. Print journals will be wheeled away to a new home in the basement, and book stacks will be transplanted to the second floor.
A café, diner-style booths, stand-up workstations, oversized ottomans, and even coffee tables with pillows on the floor will take their place, all equipped for online access. Interactive touch-screen monitors will line the wall.
“Students are still coming to the library in droves,” says Mr. Trzeciak. “But more and more often what they want to come to the library for is collaborative space where they can work with their friends and have a coffee, sit comfortably and do their homework, and get help when they need it.”
In an era of change for libraries, Mr. Trzeciak is a man in the vanguard. Although not especially young – with a hint of five-o’clock shadow, he’s a youthful 40-ish – everything about him, from his efficient gait to his soft yet purposeful manner of speech to his functional sense of style, seems geared for action.
November 13, 2007
Can a library-based reality show be next?
I haven't seen this, but it sounds like my kind of show, so I probably will when I get a chance. Make of that what you will, given that Stephen's post contains this wording: "It's rated M for mature. Hurray. (I am sick enough to truly enjoy the children's librarian character). Please don't watch this unless you have a slighty warped or tilted sense of humour."
Sounds somewhat NSFW to me, but of course none of us would watch this except lunchtime, right?
November 12, 2007
CNN opens I-Report hub in Second Life
"CNN's first in-world training session will be held Tuesday, November 13, at 5 p.m. ET at the I-Report Hub."
Things they don't teach you in grad school
"Beaubois said he analyzed Second Life thoroughly before adapting it pedagogically. He opted for a private "island" -- virtual land with restricted access -- to minimize distractions. (Still, he admires those on Second Life "who can gracefully teach a class while a squirrel crashes its spaceship" into their projects or "a 6-foot fox harasses the teacher with questions not about the class.")"
While that quote leapt out at me, there is much more substance in the article which discusses the conflict between the academic culture of higher education and the corporate culture Linden Lab's Second Life.
November 11, 2007
Lorcan Dempsey's weblog: Presentations in the program points to an interesting use of Slideshare for embedding conference presentations in a meeting agenda or program (http://www.eduserv.org.uk/foundation/events/openid2007/programme).
I like this - no clicking back and forth to see the presentations you're interested in as they are all right there in the order presented. For those who aren't able to be present in person, it gives an easy way to follow the flow of the presentations.
Facebook and Libraries
Lorcan Dempsey's weblog: Parents at the party quotes from an article on EducationGuardian.co.uk in which students indicate that they don't want faculty and librarians in MySpace and Facebook, but prefer to keep those spaces as fun, friend-oriented, off-the-record parts of their lives. Perhaps it's related to the rash of stories about graduates who lost job opportunities after an interviewer found their online profile or incriminating pictures, or perhaps the differences between generations about privacy aren't so different as we thought.
Ironically, the same day, I read a post in Stephen's Lighthouse, Facebook Institutions heralding the ability of institutions to have Facebook Profiles.
Will we be patting ourselves on the back for mastering the social network only to find we have only ourselves to talk to?
November 09, 2007
Seems like common sense, doesn't it?
Maybe next they'll reimburse for quality information!