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American Icons: John Henry

In the ballad, told countless times over more than a century, the railroad worker John Henry wins a race against a new steam-powered drill, but the victory is Pyrrhic: he collapses, saying “Give me a cool drink of water before I die.” “Did he win? Did he lose?,” wonders novelist Colson Whitehead. “By the '60s,” remarks Scott Nelson, a professor of history who wrote Steel Drivin’ Man, “John Henry is looked down on, as being an Uncle Tom character. ... The black man who’s always willing to do what the white man wants. There’s a division between brain and brawn.”

See all the January books

Book Calendar 2013

Now that January is done you can see all the books that were selected for January at once.

The current day can be seen here.

Major Dutch publisher abandons DRM

De Arbeiderspers/A W Bruna, the largest publisher in the Netherlands, has removed DRM from its e-books for the first time.

Full article

Digital Apollo

Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight

January 14 selection for the Book Calendar: Digital Apollo

Lincoln's Code

Cites & Insights January 2013 (13:1) available

I probably said it would be out the first week of January 2013, but it was ready, so...

Cites & Insights 13:1 (January 2013) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ13i1.pdf

The issue is 40 pages long.

Salumi

January 7 book for the book calendar - Salumi: The Craft of Italian Dry Curing

If you look at the calendar in flip card mode you can browse over all the titles selected so far.

Dodos

21st Century Dodos

Book that looks at technologies that have gone extinct.

Coke can ring pulls, telephone boxes, VHS, cassette tapes, village post offices, the test card, hand-written letters, classic TV ads of yesteryear -- all of these and many, many more are bid a fond farewell in this affectionate, but slightly irreverent tribute.

Listen to Great Music

Book Calendar selection for January 4 - Listen to Great Music

The Universal Sense

January 3 Book Calendar entry -The Universal Sense

Book Calendar - January 2

Post for January 2

Book Calendar - January 1

The Book Calendar has posted the January 1 entry.

Book Calendar 2013

Site that features a new book everyday - Book Calendar 2013

100 Notable Books of 2012

NYT has a list of a 100 notable books for 2012. You can see all the books here.

Favorite Books of the Year... Everywhere

"What are your favorite books from 2012?" Tis the season when this question starts firing up libraryland and produces massive amounts of list serv posts with you-absolutely-have-to-read-this-book
recommendations. This topic is also an easy way for business, science and other non-library type of publications and websites to reach out to readers. (I find that many of the books that top these lists are more obscure titles that are not on the best seller lists, but that's whole other post.)

Children and E-Books

A couple of months ago I offered to give a talk on Children and e-books. Who is reading them, what they are reading them on, where the books come from, etc.
A lot has been written on adults and ebooks, a bit less on teens and ebooks and next to nothing on kids and ebooks except for the pieces on pre-schoolers and iPads.
Clearly, the organizers of the conference thought that there wasn't enough discussion on this topic and agreed to have me speak. But it turns out to be a Catch-22. What do I speak on, if there isn't enough information out there?

Cites & Insights 12:12 (December 2012) available

Cites & Insights 12:12 (December 2012) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ12i12.pdf

The print-oriented PDF is 38 pages long. A single-column 6x9" PDF designed for online reading is also available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ12i12on.pdf. That version is 73 pages long. Both versions include bookmarks for all sections and subsections, one reason they're fairly large.

The issue includes the following (also available as HTML separates from the essay titles or at http://citesandinsights.info):
Policy:
The Rapid Rout of RWA (pp. 1-25)

A comedy in four acts over seven weeks, from AAP/PSP's endorsement of HR3699, the Research Works Act, on January 5, 2012, to Elsevier's withdrawal of its support for RWA (which mysteriously caused the near-instantaneous death of the bill, introduced as it had been by wholly independent Congresspeople) on February 7, 2012. It's a story that I believe and hope will resonate with scientists and others...

And it's not directly related to the other essay, but some might see connections:

Libraries:
Walking Away: Courage and Acquisitions (pp. 25-38)

World's Fastest Number Game Wows Spectators And Scientists

The Japanese have stumbled upon an extraordinary way to do mental arithmetic very, very fast: Become proficient with an abacus, then discard it and do your calculations using a mental image of one. The results are mind-boggling

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/alexs-adventures-in-numberland/2012/oct/29/mathematics

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