- LISWire: La Veta Public Library Goes Live on LibLime Koha 4.14
- LISWire: Griffin Free Public Library Chooses ByWater Solutions’ Koha Support
Fleeing Islamist extremists torched a library containing historic manuscripts in Timbuktu, the mayor said Monday, as French and Malian forces closed in on Mali's fabled desert city. Ousmane Halle said he heard about the burnings early Monday.
"It's truly alarming that this has happened," he told The Associated Press by telephone from Mali's capital, Bamako, on Monday. "They torched all the important ancient manuscripts. The ancient books of geography and science. It is the history of Timbuktu, of its people."
The mayor said Monday that the radical Islamists had torched his office as well as the Ahmed Baba Institute — a library rich with historical documents — in an act of retaliation before they fled late last week.
Timbuktu, long a hub of Islamic learning, is also home to some 20,000 manuscripts, some dating back as far as the 12th century. Owners have succeeded in removing some of the manuscripts from Timbuktu to save them, while others have been carefully hidden away from the Islamists.
The destructions recall tactics used by the Taliban in 2001 when they dynamited a pair of giant Buddhas carved into a mountain in Bamiyan province. Around the same time, the Taliban also rampaged through the national museum, smashing any art depicting the human form, considered idolatrous under their hardline interpretation of Islam. In all, they destroyed about 2,500 statues.
Andrew pointed the way to today's "Minimalism with an Exception" comic from Wasted Talent... "Someday I will live in a library that is also a maze (so I have lots of walls for art). It will look like a castle from the outside and treehouse from the inside, all the exterior walls will be giant windows. It will have a reading enclave, an art studio and a machine shop. Also it will be on an island with chickens and goats. This is all going to happen when I am a zillionaire."
The Asturias Academy in Quetzaltanango, Guatemala is looking for a School Librarian for the 2013 academic year. The ideal candidate has Spanish language skills and experience/interest in school librarianship. This is a volunteer position. A stipend of up to $2400 is available to the successful candidate to help cover living costs in Guatemala, provided by Librarians Without Borders (www.librarianswithoutborders.org). Working alongside the school’s permanent librarian, the volunteer librarian will be responsible for planning library activities for students ages 4-18, in addition to maintaining the library. Duties include: keeping records of books borrowed and returned, building a collection “wish list” for further expansion, leading library instruction sessions for students, working with Librarians Without Borders to set up a circulation system, and working with teachers to incorporate the library into classroom activities. The volunteer librarian will also help train the permanent librarian to lead the management and operations of the library. For a full job description and application instructions, please visit the Librarians Without Borders' website.
This week's episode talks about the ethics of information handling, promulgates a reading of a new open source license that could be used in LIS realm software projects, and provides a brief news miscellany.
Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis) (Free Lossless Audio Codec), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Items that can be purchased to ameliorate our equipment damage can be acquired here via Amazon which would then be sent directly to us upon purchase.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit
Letter to the editor by person kicked out of library because the library was having a private party.
The bronze statue of a young boy dreamily gazing into the sky as he reads from a book in his lap was discovered missing on Thursday morning.
The statue has been stolen before and recovered.
Big Data is pushing into the humanities, as evidenced by new, illuminating computer analyses of literary history.
Emily Lloyd:...is the name of a brief slide deck & guest post I have up at Tame The Web, a kind of part two to an earlier guest post on tweeting libraries. I've embedded the slide deck below, too--please set it to full screen if you decide to view it.
I spent a lot of time on Twitter last year, not as myself, but as my library system*. This deck covers some of what I learned. I strongly urge tweeting libraries (and nonprofits, and small businesses, etc) to follow their patrons. Many don't. It's too big a missed opportunity not to mention.
The world is full of data — and that's a problem. We have to find a place to store all those digital photos, tax records and unfinished novels. British scientists have demonstrated a possible solution: They've stored all of Shakespeare's sonnets on several small stretches of DNA.
And because I am who I am, it got me thinking about great movie library scenes that already exist. At first, I thought the list would be pretty short, but you know what? Hollywood loves a library. Some combination of ambiance, seclusion, hidden knowledge, and the sheer beauty of shelves upon shelves of books make libraries a fantastic film setting.
Results of a recent Pew Research Study are reported in Publishers Weekly.
The singular most important finding in the latest Pew study, Library Services in the Digital Age, is that libraries—in the opinion of most Americans—aren’t just about books. 80% of U.S. residents say that lending books is a “very important” service, but they rate the help they get from reference librarians as equally important. And nearly the same number, 77%, reported that free access to technology and the Internet is also very important. This triumvirate—books, help, and technology—runs through the entire report.
Could the library brand—historically bound to book borrowing—be undergoing a transformation? In the last major study of users, OCLC’s Perception of Libraries, 2010, patrons were asked to associate the first thing that came to mind when they thought of libraries. And for 75% of the respondents, the answer was books. While Pew didn’t play the same association game, it seems that Pew’s users have a more nuanced take on the library’s role.
The Pew study is based on landline and cell phone interviews conducted in English and Spanish, with a nationally representative sample of 2,252 people ages 16 and older. It could be that the study tapped into a younger demographic who make greater use of library technology. Or perhaps the recession, which has forced millions to rediscover libraries, was a catalyst for users to take fuller advantage of what the library offers.
Copy of the results of this latest study here. According to the authors "Patrons embrace new technologies – and would welcome more. But many still want printed books to hold their central place."
Atlantic article about David Coleman, one of the major people behind Common Core
Why one consumer has spent more on digital media in the last year than he used to spend on the physical stuff.
Excerpt: I am spending more on digital media than I used to spend on the physical stuff. (The federal government says the average American family spent $2,572 on all entertainment, not just digital, in 2011.) And I know why I am spending more on digital media.
Digital media, unlike its slow cousin, is immediate. In the past, if friends mentioned a good book they had just finished, people made a note (mental or on a scrap of paper) to pick it up during their next visit to the bookstore or library. The same went for other items like CDs, DVDs or magazines.
St. Paul Public Library's "Read Brave" program is a One Read-like campaign with an added goal of youth empowerment. SPPL is encouraging teens to read A.S. King's Everybody See The Ants--a YA novel addressing bullying--and to create art in response to it, in preparation for an author visit from King in late February. Bonus: participating teens get a chance to board Lady Gaga's Born Brave tour bus, which will make a special stop before heading to her February 6th St. Paul concert.
Obscurity is the idea that when information is hard to obtain or understand, it is, to some degree, safe. Safety,here, doesn't mean inaccessible. Competent and determined data hunters armed with the right tools can always find a way to get it. Less committed folks, however, experience great effort as a deterrent.
Online, obscurity is created through a combination of factors. Being invisible to search engines increases obscurity. So does using privacy settings and pseudonyms. Disclosing information in coded ways that only a limited audience will grasp enhances obscurity, too.
A Doll’s Magic, Free to Renew
These have been the many phases of Kirsten Larson, an American Girl doll who sat on a shelf in the Ottendorfer branch of the New York Public Library, in the East Village, until a resourceful children’s librarian began lending her to girls, many of whose parents, because of financial or feminist reasons, resist buying the dolls.
The issue is 40 pages long. A single-column 6x9 version, optimized for online reading and intended for e-readers and reading from the screen, is 75 pages long and available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ13i2on.pdf
This issue includes:
The Front (pp. 1-3)
Doing the numbers: notes on C&I readership during 2012 and since it moved to its current website. Also a quick note on the (failed) HTML challenge.
Catching Up On Open Access 2 (pp. 3-40)
The rest of the megaroundup that began in January. This installment includes Upping the Anti, Controversies, Predators, Economics, Elsevier, The Future!, A Little Humor, and a closing note on progress, snipers and inquisitors.
Cites & Insights is no longer available as HTML separates.
Psst: Have you heard the ongoing common knowledge that nearly all academic libraries have had falling circulation for quite a few years now? If your own library had rising circulation, say between 2008 and 2010, did you think you were a special flower?
A March essay looks at the reality behind "nearly all" based on NCES data. Let's just say the common knowledge is just a wee bit off. But for that, you'll have to wait for the March 2013 issue...
David Lee King with an interesting question, what do we think is important? Do our users agree?
Think about some of these things libraries have, for example:
-Library Catalog – interesting to our customers?
-Article Databases – interesting to our customers?
-Periodicals reading room …
-Reference desk …
I think our goal should be two-fold:
1.spend time, money, and expertise on stuff our customers care about
2.do stuff that our customers care about
One might not expect to find VHS covers of pornographic movies or prostitutes' trade cards at the library, but those items are among the racy ephemera Cornell University has been compiling since 1988 as part of its Human Sexuality Collection.
Perhaps the most groundbreaking aspect of “Library Services in the Digital Age,” the report released today by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project is how non-groundbreaking its findings are.
Based on “a survey of 2,252 Americans ages 16 and above” conducted between October 15 and November 10 of last year, the Pew reportassures us that, even in the digital age, libraries continue to serve a variety of functions, with nearly 60% of respondents having had some kind of interaction with a library in the last 12 months, and 91% saying that “