Blogs

One family’s quest to give Chinese orphans a happy home

After reaching their fifties and raising their own children, Jenny and Richard Bowen adopted 2-year-old Maya from China after learning of poor orphanage conditions for abandoned girls. Sixteen years later, the Bowens have two adopted daughters from the same region and have started a non-profit called Half the Sky to transform orphan care with the cooperation of the Chinese government.

Mark Twain: A Life

Mark Twain founded the American voice. His works are a living national treasury: taught, quoted, and reprinted more than those of any writer except Shakespeare. His awestruck contemporaries saw him as the representative figure of his times, and his influence has deeply flavoured the 20th and 21st centuries. Yet somehow, beneath the vast flowing river of literature that he left behind — books, sketches, speeches, not to mention the thousands of letters to his friends and his remarkable entries in private journals — the man who became Mark Twain, Samuel Langhorne Clemens, has receded from view.

It is hard to imagine a life that encompassed more of its times. Sam Clemens left his frontier boyhood in Missouri for a life on the Mississippi during the golden age of steamboats. He skirted the western theater of the Civil War before taking off for an uproariously drunken newspaper career in the Nevada of the Wild West. As his fame as a humorist and lecturer spread, witnessing the extremes of wealth and poverty of New York City and the Gilded Age (which he named). He travelled to Europe on the first American pleasure cruise and revitalized the prim genre of travel writing. He wooed and won his lifelong devoted wife, yet quietly pined for the girl who was his first crush and whom he would re-encounter many decades later. He invented and invested in get-rich-quick schemes. He became the toast of Europe and a celebrity who toured the globe. His comments on everything he saw, many published here for the first time, are priceless. -- Read More

Correction to Cites & Insights 14:9

Cites & Insights 14:9 has been reissued with one correction on page 15, as discussed here: http://walt.lishost.org/2014/08/correction-in-cites-insights-149/

Cites & Insights 14:9 (September 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:9 (September 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i9.pdf

This two-column print-oriented version is 18 pages.

For those reading C&I online or on an ereader, the single-column 35-page 6x9" edition is available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i9on.pdf

This issue includes:

The Front: Toward 15 and 200: The Report pp. 1-2

I promised a list of supporters and sponsors and an overall report on the outcome of the spring 2014 fundraising campaign for C&I. Here it is. Oh, there's also "A Word to the Easily Confused" about the definition of "journal," the change in the masthead to "periodical" because some folks are easily confused, and the need for consistency when choosing to regard gray literature as worthless.

Intersections: Some Notes on Elsevier pp. 2-16

A half-dozen subtopics (actually five subtopics and some miscellanea) involving Elsevier that haven't been covered recently elsewhere in C&I.

The Back pp. 16-18

Four mini-essays.

 

Packard Bell - Library History

In 1996 Packard Bell put out a commercial that tried to show urban existence as negative with the point of the commercial being that using a Packard Bell computer "You can do it all from home". Librarians objected to the negative image of the library. The commercial has storm trooper like characters marching around the library shushing people. Packard Bell changed the commercial and lifted out the library scenes. The version here shows the library scene.

Cowabunga! ‘Ninja Turtles’ in training sweep into Sioux City bookstore

SIOUX CITY | During one of their weekly outings, DeeDee Johnson spent the afternoon with her 6-year-old grandson fostering his fascination with four fictional crime-fighting brothers and books. Devin Riley became a certified Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle in training at Barnes & Noble Booksellers on Wednesday. Though the boy likes Leonardo the most, the blue-masked leader hardly compares to his sensei – his grandma. He looked up from his TMNT coloring page and said, “I like to read.” Read more

Amazon says it would be content with 30% of revenue if Hachette e-books were $9.99

Amazon says it would be content with 30% of revenue if Hachette e-books were $9.99
http://www.teleread.com/ebooks/amazon-would-be-content-with-30-margin-if-hachette-e-books-we...

Could Brooklyn hipsters help save the middle class?

Cites & Insights 14:8 (August 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:8 (August 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i8.pdf

The two-column print-oriented issue is 32 pages long. A single-column 6x9" version designed for online/tablet reading is also available, at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i8on.pdf (The single-column version is 61 pages long.)

This issue includes the following:

The Front: Once More with [Big] Dealing pp. 1-2

If you read the June 2014 issue, you may be aware that "Big-Deal Serial Purchasing: Tracking the Damage" wasn't available when I thought it would be.

It's available now; this brief essay offers the link to the ALA Store page for the Library Technology Reports issue and notes the complementary book for those academic librarians with deeper interests.

I believe every academic library should pay attention to this issue of LTR. If your library subscribes, it should be available now (electronically) or in a few days (in print form). If it doesn't, you should buy the issue as a separate. Some of you really would find Beyond the Damage: Circulation, Coverage and Staffing useful as well.

Words: Doing It Yourself pp. 2-18

Notes on self-publishing and whether or not it makes sense for you (or for your library to assist with).

Intersections: Access and Ethics 3 pp. 18-32 -- Read More

Touring Buffalo's Urban Blight

The Writing's On the Wall

Six Degrees: The Science of a Connected Age

Six Degrees: The Science of a Connected Age

The pioneering young scientist whose work on the structure of small worlds has triggered an avalanche of interest in networks.

In this remarkable book, Duncan Watts, one of the principal architects of network theory, sets out to explain the innovative research that he and other scientists are spearheading to create a blueprint of our connected planet. Whether they bind computers, economies, or terrorist organizations, networks are everywhere in the real world, yet only recently have scientists attempted to explain their mysterious workings.

From epidemics of disease to outbreaks of market madness, from people searching for information to firms surviving crisis and change, from the structure of personal relationships to the technological and social choices of entire societies, Watts weaves together a network of discoveries across an array of disciplines to tell the story of an explosive new field of knowledge, the people who are building it, and his own peculiar path in forging this new science. -- Read More

Cites & Insights 14:7 (July 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:7 (July 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i7.pdf

That URL is for the traditional two-column print-oriented ejournal. If you plan to read the journal on a computer, a tablet or other e-device (and if you plan to follow links), you're much better off--especially in this case--downloading the single-column online-oriented version at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i7on.pdf

[Links may not work from the two-column version. Conversely, some boldface may not show up in the one-column version. This issue has two dozen tables, some of which have smaller type in the two-column version, making the one-column version easier to read.]

The two-column version is 24 pages long. The single-column 6x9 version is 45 pages long.

The issue consists of a single essay, all original material (except for a few excerpts from publisher pages):

Intersections
Journals, "Journals" and Wannabes: Investigating the List (pp. 1-24)

Jeffrey Beall's 4P (potential, probable, possible predatory) publisher and journal lists total 9,219 journals in early April 2014.

The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) totals 9.822 journals as of early June 2014.

9,219 is 93.9% of 9,822.

But: 90.8% of the journals in DOAJ are not represented in Beall's lists.

A paradox? Not really. -- Read More

Cites & Insights 14:6 (June 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:6 (June 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i6.pdf

The print-oriented two-column version is 16 pages long. You may also view or download a 32-page one-column 6x9" ereader-oriented version at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i6on.pdf

This issue includes three sections:
The Front: Beyond the Damage (pp. 1-4)

Libraries that subscribe to Library Technology Reports should, some time in the next few days or weeks, receive "Big-Deal Serial Purchasing: Tracking the Damage"--and academic libraries that don't subscribe to LTR may want to purchase this edition from ALA Editions. It brings last year's The Big Deal and the Damage Done forward to cover 2002-2012 and offers a tighter and more sophisticated view of the situation. (Spoiler alert: Things got worse from 2010 to 2012)

Simultaneously, I'm publishing Beyond the Damage: Circulation, Coverage and Staffing, a book looking at some other aspects of academic libraries and how they changed between 2002 and 2012. It's available in two forms, each $45: a 130-page paperback with color graphs--or a site-licensed PDF ebook with precisely the same content. Easiest way to find it: go to Lulu.com and search "Crawford beyond damage" (no quotes needed)--that currently yields just the two versions.

Media: Mystery Collection, part 7 (pp. 4-12)

For the first time, most of these movies are in color--which doesn't necessarily mean they're better, as this is also (I believe) the first time I've given up on movies before they're finished in five out of 24 cases. There are some gems, but also some real dross here. -- Read More

Library memes



Preserving the LA story, one block at a time

The city of Los Angeles is constantly reinventing itself. But now, a project called "Survey L.A." is digging beneath the city's layers to identify, catalogue and preserve its diverse cultural history in electronic form. Jeffrey Brown reports on this effort to map the history of a relatively new and rapidly developing city.

May 8: Photos of the Day

Frustration in the White House press corps

Frustration is growing in the White House press corps due to limited access to the "transparency" president. In a piece that originally aired last year, Bob goes to the White House to find out how the role of the press corps is changing under this media savvy administration.

http://www.onthemedia.org/story/frustration-white-house-press-corps-3/

May 2: Photos of the Day

How a national spike in incarcerations affects communities

How a national spike in incarcerations affects communities


Since 1973, the rate of incarceration in the United States has quadrupled, with more than 2 million people now behind bars. Jeffrey Brown talks to Jeremy Travis of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice about a new report that examines the causes and consequences of this explosion and recommends ways to cut down the figures.

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