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Why the Amish Matter

The following article was published at http://theantiquarianlibrarian.blogspot.com/2012/03/why-amish-matter.html
Someone posted a question on Twitter that got me thinking: What's up with all the Amish books? I did not join the discussion because it was addressed to Christian book authors, but it made me think about the topic for some time.

The most crass and commercial answer is to say that bonnet fiction sells, but obviously there is more to it than that.

The first Amish stories were collected by Mennonite publishers beginning circa 1970 to preserve the stories of the old ways in which many Mennonites once lived. As the Anabaptist peoples plodded slowly to modernity many wanted a reference point to the past. Writers included both historical and fictional accounts of Amish stories to remind the young of the life they once had, and that some still practice. I became acquainted to this literature while in seminary.

Amish literature takes a fresh look at the church and contemporary Christian life. It is a critique of both Amish legalism and contemporary license. For some fundamentalist groups, the act of writing fiction is taboo. On the other hand, it is faith affirming to view a faith that matters to the community. This is rare in our increasingly secularized society.

For Librarians, Librarianship is Still About the Books

This article was originally published at http://theantiquarianlibrarian.blogspot.com/2012/03/for-librarians-librarianship-is-still.html.

While technology and gadgets seem to be overtaking much of library work, the love of words, the love of books is at the heart of librarianship for librarians around the world. The article "Internet is Discouraging Book Reading, Librarian Says" http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/internet-is-discouraging-book-reading-librarian-says tells the story of Abdul Razak Al Khumairi of the UAE and Arabian Gulf Library. The following quotes from the article demonstrates that for librarians everywhere it is still about the books.

"Oh, I know people think it is the most unprestigious job out there, but to me it is the most rewarding as books have been my teachers, my solace and friends in my darkest hours," he said.
"They have given me a second chance in life."

Continuing:

"Cataloguing, indexing and shelving is an art; it is not just a matter of putting a book on a shelf," he said.

Continuing:

"Unfortunately, the questions are often about internet access," he said, laughing. "The internet is a curse in many ways. It is killing our Arabic language and has made people too lazy to go check out a book for information."

Continuing:

"Parents need to come to the library with their kids. That will change everything," he said, fondly recalling a frequent childhood image of his mother with a book, sitting across the kitchen while the food was cooking.

Finally:

New Study Shows that Free Apps Are Killing Your Battery

Is it worth it to buy the paid version of an app if you can download another version for free? If you value your battery life, it very well could be.

Read more: http://techland.time.com/2012/03/19/new-study-shows-that-free-apps-are-killing-your-battery/...

Taxpayers unwittingly encouraging online privatization of U.S. library system?

OverDrive gets loan of up to $1M from Ohio county with budget-challenged libraries: Taxpayers unwittingly encouraging online privatization of U.S. library system?

Full piece at LibraryCity.org

Paperback

The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood (Vintage) is now available in paperback. It came out on March 6.

Miniature E-Books Let Journalists Stretch Legs

The Kindle Single is not a promising name. It sounds like a new kind of prefabricated fire log, or a type of person you might meet on the dating service eHarmony — perhaps a lonely independent bookstore owner put out of business by Amazon.com.

Full article in the NYT: Miniature E-Books Let Journalists Stretch Legs

Cites & Insights 12:2 (March 2012) available

Cites & Insights 12:2 (March 2012) has just been published.
The 30-page two-column PDF (designed for printing) represents the new, refreshed Cites & Insights, following the two reader surveys. Contents, available as HTML separates using the links below, include:
The Front (pp. 1-6)

The reinvention or refreshing of Cites & Insights, including results of the two polls, new section names, tweaks to layout and typography, and a discussion of the online PDF alternative, a single-column version (in this case 53 pages) designed for those who read C&I on various sorts of screens--iPads, netbooks, notebooks, Kindles, Nooks and others.

Social Networks (pp. 6-16)

The Social Network Scene, Part 1: Catching up with social network miscellany

The Middle (pp. 16-26)

A range of items that might formerly have appeared in Trends & Quick Takes: the non-death of desktop software; "smarter, dumber or both"; closing the digital frontier (or not); and lots more.

The Back (pp. 26-30)

Notes from the 1%, stereo prices and other snark.

Using Comics and Graphic Literature to Illustrate Legal Concepts

See page 3 of the newsletter of the Western Pennsylvania Law Library Association.

Newsletter here:
http://www.aallnet.org/chapter/wplla/newslettersp10.pdf

'Space Chronicles': Why Exploring Space Still Matters

Book story on NPR:

Space exploration will create a thriving culture of innovation, says scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson.

http://www.npr.org/2012/02/27/147351252/space-chronicles-why-exploring-space-still-matters

Hawking Radiation: Figuring Out How Many Books Are Sold to Libraries

It is one of the more peculiar aspects of scholarly publishing that although everyone expects that academic books will find a place in libraries, no one knows how many books actually get there. This doesn’t mean that every scholarly book can be found in every library; far from it. Nor does it mean that the books found in libraries are in great demand (the common estimate is that 40% of all books in academic libraries never circulate, but I would like to see more evidence of this).

On the Media

Two stories on the radio program "On the Media"

THE NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE'S 200TH ANNIVERSARY
This year, The New England Journal of Medicine, the longest, continuously running medical journal in the world, turns 200. Brooke talks to NEJM editor in Chief Dr. Jeffrey Drazen about how far the journal has come and its mistakes and successes.

C&I Survey Results

For those of you who participated in the Cites & Insights reader survey, I've posted the results.

How Companies Are 'Defining Your Worth' Online

Advertisers collect information with every digital move people make. They then target ads based on that information. Communications scholar Joseph Turow worries that advertisers will use such data to discriminate against people and put them into "reputation silos."

Full piece on NPR: How Companies Are 'Defining Your Worth' Online

South Sioux City Public Library news this Week

This is from Cardinal Opportunities at the South Sioux City Public Library http://ssclibrarycardinalopportunities.blogspot.com/2012/02/february-is-love-your-library-mo....

The following was published in the Dakota County Star newspaper on 2/16/2012.

Technology Classes:
Tues Feb 21, 5:30pm: Yahoo Messenger: Do you have friends or family that live so far away you never get to see them. Yahoo Messenger provides you the opportunity to keep in contact with them for free. Yahoo Messenger is a free instant messaging program that allows you to visually see, talk to and even sends text messages to individuals all over the world. This class will teach you how to set up an account and what type of equipment you will need for your computer.

Wed Feb 22, 11am: Smartphone App's: Do you carry a "computer" in your pocket by way of a Smartphone? Want to know about programs that you can do on your Smartphone? Stop on in and let us help with that information.

Wed Feb 22, 2pm: Google's Documents Spotlight: This class will give learners an opportunity to learn how to create word processing documents, spreadsheets and presentations in the cloud and share them with friends.

Movies:
On Tuesday night Feb 21, 7pm the library will show our Classic Movie/Discussion. A rich young woman marries an idle playboy against her father's will. Her father holds her captive on his yacht but she escapes and, while on her way to New York, becomes entangled with an unemployed news reporter. The movie stars Clarke Gable and Claudette Colbert.

At Last, They See: E-Books 'Democratize' Publishing

Digital publishing is in its infancy, but bookmakers are finally embracing the enormous potential.

Full article

Book publishers shut down ebook-sharing operation

Two file-sharing websites have pulled their services offline, following an injunction

http://news.techworld.com/security/3338075/book-publishers-shut-down-ebook-sharing-operation/

Virtual Reference Conference, April 12-13, Ithaca, NY

Revved Up for Reference 2: The Road Ahead

April 12-13, 2012
Ithaca, NY

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