Bibliofuture's blog

Media theorist Douglas Rushkoff has second thoughts about our digital practices

The kids I celebrated in my early books as “digital natives,” capable of seeing through all efforts of big media and marketing, have actually proven less able to discern the integrity of the sources they read and the intentions of the programs they use than we struggling adults are. If they don’t know what the programs they’re using are even for, they don’t stand a chance at using them effectively. They’re less likely to become power users than the used. It is our job as educators to change all this. We’re our students’ best chance of becoming media—or new media—literate. Yet our digital practices betray our own unconscious approach toward these media. We employ technologies in our lives and our curriculums by force of habit or fear of being left behind.

I regularly visit one-to-one laptop schools where neither the students nor the educators have any real sense of purpose about the highly technologized program they’ve implemented. They bring a very powerful new medium into the classroom and make it central without having reckoned with the medium’s biases.

Full article at School Library Journal

Citing Sources in the Age of the Internet and eBooks

Interesting blog post at "An American Editor" blog.

It has been an ongoing frustration of mine, dealing with bibliographic information that cites the Internet and ebooks.

In the olden days, way back when I was a student, the rule was that citing a source meant it really existed and was verifiable; one couldn’t cite and have accepted “James, J. (2010, August 10). Private conversation.” But today, I guess, anything goes — at least if you are in the role of author but not in the role of paper grader; that is, I find these types of cites in academic papers knowing full well that if a student of the author submitted such a cite, it would be unacceptable.

More important, however, is that cites to web pages that no longer exist — if they ever really existed — seem to be de rigueur, and no one complains. It used to be that it was not enough to cite a source, but the source had to be reputable and accepted in the field. It was pretty hard to cite Portnoy’s Complaint as an authority on sexual mores, yet I suspect that would not be true today.

Full blog post:
http://americaneditor.wordpress.com/2011/02/14/citing-sources-in-the-age-of-the-internet-and...

Thinking about the limits of customer service

Article at Library Journal
http://www.libraryjournal.com/lj/home/889183-264/selling_the_library__peer.html.csp

Excerpt:

I was just at a small informal gathering of academic library directors who were discussing a variety of things, including who was doing what about discovery layers, whether we need to revisit shared collection development, and what was going on at our libraries in the areas of information literacy and faculty development. In the course of our discussion, someone said "what's the best way to get librarians out of the library?"

What, they bring their pillows and bed down for the night? Are they staging a sit-in? No, apparently directors worried that librarians who do most of their work in the library building might not be aware of what's going on in academic departments and that, in turn, faculty whose research needs are often answered by electronic resources might have little idea what librarians do for a living—or what we could be doing to help them.

Colorado and Kansas Libraries Collaborate To Reduce Cost of Out-of-State Borrowing

New courier system saves money compared to postal service and other carriers. It also affects lending patterns and may give a nudge toward collaborative collection development.

Full article:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/lj/home/889231-264/colorado_and_kansas_libraries_collaborate.h...

No Argument: Thomas Keeps 5-Year Silence

The anniversary will probably be observed in silence.

A week from Tuesday, when the Supreme Court returns from its midwinter break and hears arguments in two criminal cases, it will have been five years since Justice Clarence Thomas has spoken during a court argument.

Interesting article in the NYT about this.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/13/us/13thomas.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=thomas&st=cse

The Ethics of Free Cellphone Calls

When I last wrote about the quest to get free phone calls forever, a number of readers wrote to point out a very sneaky trick that lets you achieve that frugal heaven — even from your cellphone. Yes, it’s a way to get free cellphone calls, without listening to an ad, without being in Wi-Fi, without using any minutes.

Full article: Pogue's Post in the NYT

Oregon Attorney’s Documentary ‘Hot Coffee’ Makes the Sundance Cut

Many lawyers have fantasized about putting their practice on hold and making a movie, but few actually do it.

Even fewer can say their maiden effort landed them a coveted spot at an internationally renowned film festival.

Ashland, Ore., lawyer Susan Saladoff is that rare lawyer who not only followed her dreams but has bragging rights to boot. Her 2009 film Hot Coffee will be screened at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.

The feature-length documentary is one of 16 selected from 841 entrants for the festival's U.S. documentary competition. It largely focuses on the infamous 1994 McDonald's coffee spill case—in which a jury awarded plaintiff Stella Liebeck $2.86 million in damages after she spilled hot coffee on herself—while also exploring how and why the case has become so iconic.

Full article here.

Speck by Speck, Dust Piles Up

Article about dust. Man with a 31,000 volume library is mentioned.

Full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/10/garden/10dust.htm

Frederick Douglass

Saw a presentation by a reenactor of Frederick Douglass. The speaker recommended two books on Douglass.

Giants: The Parallel Lives of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln

The Radical and the Republican: Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, and the Triumph of Antislavery Politics

Three Books On Entering Strange New Worlds

From earliest times, the plight of the stranger, the outsider, has always made for a great story. In the Old Testament, Ruth follows her bereaved mother-in-law, Naomi, and embraces a new culture, customs (and husband) to make a home for them in a land far from her own. From ancient texts to the present day, perhaps this is what reading is always about — finding a space to explore worlds and lives that are not our own, to look in on places where we don't belong.

Full piece on NPR

Dogtooth

Dogtooth was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film. It is currently available on Netflix Watch-It-Instantly.

NYT review: http://movies.nytimes.com/2010/06/25/movies/25dog.html

The Matter of the Page: Essays in Search of Ancient and Medieval Authors

The Matter of the Page: Essays in Search of Ancient and Medieval Authors

Ancient and medieval literary texts often call attention to their existence as physical objects. Shane Butler helps us to understand why. Arguing that writing has always been as much a material struggle as an intellectual one, The Matter of the Page offers timely lessons for the digital age about how creativity works and why literature moves us. -- Read More

Class Action Suit Filed Against Jimmy Carter Book

Readers are often warned not to judge a book by its cover, but what about its publicity? That is the basis of a class-action lawsuit against former President Jimmy Carter and his publisher Simon & Schuster over his 2006 book “Palestine: Peace, Not Apartheid,” which was filed in Manhattan federal court on Tuesday.

Full story

Gale Launches New Contest to Unmask the Librarian Superheroes Among Us

Gale, part of Cengage Learning, today announced the launch of the Are you a Librarian Superhero contest to recognize the often heroic efforts put forth by librarians around the country, and to encourage other feats of greatness. Gale is calling on everyone – fellow librarians, library patrons, students and school administrators – to nominate a superhero librarian who is making a real difference for their library and community.

See: http://bit.ly/eQZr16

Innovation Is Doing Little for Incomes

Interesting piece in the NYT by Tyler Cowen (professor of economics at George Mason University)

Artricle here

U.S. Presidents / Possible Reading Project

I am thinking about starting a reading project where I read one book about every U.S. President. I am gathering a list of books to see what is available.

I am open to suggestions if anyone has books they would like to add to the list. I can guarantee that I have to be missing some major works at this point.

1st - George Washington (1789-1797)

Washington: A Life

His Excellency: George Washington

Washington: The Indispensable Man

2nd - John Adams (1797-1801) -- Read More

Amazon Kindle, protected, is immersed

An Amazon Kindle, protected by a special waterproof case, is immersed in water at a consumer electronics show. Amazon has released the first of a new line of short digital books pitched as quick, captivating works for its popular electronic reader.

See picture here: http://yhoo.it/guHCZ4

Kindle Singles debuts pithy digital works

Amazon has released the first of a new line of short digital books pitched as quick, captivating works for its popular Kindle electronic readers.

The launch of Kindle Singles included the debut of TED Books, written versions of inspirational 18-minute talks that are a trademark of renowned TED gatherings dedicated to cultivating "ideas worth spreading."
"This first set of Singles was selected by our team of editors, and includes works by Rich Cohen, Darin Strauss, Ian Ayres, and the first-ever books published by TED," said Kindle content vice president Russ Grandinetti.

Full article

Academically Adrift

Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses has been in the top 100 on Amazon for the last 9 days.

Book is mentioned in this article: 45% Of Students Don't Learn Much In College

Article in the Chronicle of Higher Education: New Book Lays Failure to Learn on Colleges' Doorsteps

The NYT has a "Room for Debate" piece called Does College Make You Smarter? that mentions the book.

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