Project Aims to Make Cuneiform Collections Available

jen writes \"Assyriology going hi-tech -
The Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative, a joint venture of
the University of California at Los Angeles and the Max Planck
Institute for the History of Science, in Berlin, will provide scholars
with access to an enormous database of cuneiform inscriptions.
With more than 200,000 tablets scattered throughout museums in
several countries (not counting the steady flow of black-market
items trickling out of Iraq and onto eBay), the world\'s 400
professional Assyriologists have been struggling to keep from being
buried alive by primary documents. The online library promises to
be the single-largest, most organized, and best cataloged repository
of cuneiform inscriptions in the world, according to its director,
Robert K. Englund, a professor of Near Eastern languages and
culture at UCLA.
Full Story from The Chronicle of Higher Ed\"

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Welcome to the Knowledge Revolution

Peter Drucker has an interesting story, Beyond The Information Revolution the appeared in The Atlantic awhile back.

The steam engine was to the Industrial Revolution as the Computer is to the “Information revolution” (if you’ve ever read Stoll you know why I put that in quotes, I\'m still not entirely sold on the knowledge revolution idea). Both the computer and the steam engine were not just the triggers, but as he puts it “above all, it’s symbol”. Now, just as then, products caught up in this revolution are seeing dramatic price decreases (Moores law being just one example). Now computers prices drop each year, then it was clothing, paper, and metal.

What he points out that is so interesting has to do with the amount of time that elapsed before the industrial revolution began to break out of it’s 19th century thinking. During the first 50 years of the revolution people had only managed to mechanize stuff that had been around, they just made more of it, and it cost less.

Just as the railroad worked to shrink “mental geography”, the internet eliminates it. We can now buys books from Amazon in Seattle, or catalogs from isim in Sweden, they both get delivered in the same way. Now we only have one economy, and one market, barriers have fallen world wide.

He calls this the Knowledge revolution because the key to our current revolution lies not in the computers themselves, but in cognitive science, that is in our minds, in the minds of the people leading this revolution.

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Information for Social Change

Rory passed along word on the new Information for Social Change [No. 13, Summer 2001].

Contents include:

- Book review: Glenn Rikowski\'s The Battle in Seattle: Its Significance for
Education. Review: John Pateman

-Resources. Martyn Lowe Some recent developments. Martyn Lowe

- Librarians protest murder in Genoa! Open letter from librarians against
the murder of people exercising the right to protest against corporate
globalization at the Genoa conference, July 2001.

- Classic and neo-information (editorial). Rory Litwin

- Libraries in Cuba: Report of a visit to \"independent,\" national and
public libraries in Cuba, 2000. John Pateman

And more...

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Keeping Papers Sealed

Lee Hadden writes: \"In an article in the Washington Post, President Bush has signed an
executive order that keeps President Reagan\'s papers secret longer than the
12 years now under the current 1978 law. Historians have asked that some
68,000 pages of Ronald Reagan\'s papers be made public, and this has been
blocked by George Bush. There is some speculation that this action is made
to protect the policy advisors around President Bush, who made be
embarrassed by revelations from the previous Bush or Reagan administrations
that are now sealed. Also, it is speculated that this action will give
President Bush more control over his papers in the future.
Particularly in a time when the president may have to act unethically
and even illegally in the war on terrorism, future revelations may lead to
embarrassment or prosecution for the president.\"

Yes you may have seen this here before.
See Also a story on Secrecy as Policy .

Amazon losing ground in core area

It seems amazon has lost some ground in the book sales war.

CNET Says Amazon is losing ground in the business that the company was created for: selling books.

Amazon has lost significant market share to archenemy Barnes&Noble.com.

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Book & Bread Mobile in Davis California

The Davis Enterprise reports that a \"mobile health/literacy resource van\" and a \"Bread and Books/Pan y Libros\" bus are taking to the streets to deliver food and information. The programs were sponsored by a $297,165 grant from the Yolo County Proposition 10 commission. Full story

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South Carolina Reads

This Story is on the new program down south called \"South Carolina Reads\", similiar to all the other \"read the same book things\" you\'ve seen in the states of Arkansas, Georgia, Virginia, Mississippi and Oklahoma and the cities of Chicago, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Denver, Boise, Philadelphia, Providence, R.I., and Buffalo, N.Y.
So far they just have a list in mind for SC, what makes a good book for this type of thing?

, “It has to be more than a good book; it has to be a good discussion. It has to be a book that is character-driven, not plot-driven. And a character has to be making a difficult decision or going through a difficult time.”

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Teachers warn dangers in Potter movie magic

Remember that one scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the one with the witch? This story just made me think of that for some reason.

One of Britain\'s biggest teaching unions has issued a stern warning to parents and teachers that J.K. Rowling\'s phenomenally successful creation could lead schoolchildren into the sinister world of the occult.

Full Story from The Observer sent in by Bob Cox.

\"The premiere of Harry Potter the movie will lead to a whole new generation of youngsters discovering witchcraft and wizardry. We welcome the values this will ingrain, focusing on good triumphing over evil. Though it is important not to over-react to this entertaining phenomenon, the risks are clear.\"

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Best Sites for vintage newspapers

IHT has a Nice Little Story by Liz Alderman, on the best sites for those who like the old newspapers.

They include,
lagalcante.com,
historic-newspapers.co.uk,
historybuff.com, and
rarenewspapers.com.

Thanks to Bob Cox for this story.

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SSSCA Down for the Count?

The Electronic Frontier Foundation reports:

Senate Commerce Committee hearings relating to the Security Systems Standards and Certification Act (SSSCA), originally set for October 25, have been postponed in the face of mounting opposition from the technology community.

The SSSCA would require that all future digital technologies include federally-mandated \"digital rights management\" (DRM) technologies that will enable Hollywood to restrict how consumers can use digital content. Response to the draft bill, which was authored by Senator Fritz Hollings (D-SC), has been largely negative. EFF announced its opposition to the bill several weeks ago and encouraged its members to express their concerns to Senator Hollings. IBM, Intel, Microsoft, and others have since announced their opposition, as well.

Senator Hollings has not re-scheduled the hearings, and has indicated that he would consider modifying the bill.

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Mitch Freedman presents pay equity, etc. to state

Steve Fesenmaier writes \"Mitch Freedman on privacy, defending intellectual freedom, combating the Uniform Computer Information Transactions Act,
budget projections, promoting library advocacy, diversity, and better salaries and pay equity by overcome the stereotype of
pittance for pay and promote a better understanding of what librarians do.


Read The Full Speech \"

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You Are What You Read

In an opinion piece for The Daily Californian, Rebecca Meyer writes...
\"Don\'t read this. Don\'t eat another bite. Put down your mental spoon and pick up something that will feed your mind. You have to consider carefully whose prose you ingest, because in a literate society, you are what you read. Critical thinking is overrated. The real obstacle to becoming an informed, responsible global citizen is not a lack of skepticism but a lack of exposure.\" more

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Scientific Publishing Stories In Nature

Lee Hadden Writes: \"
There are several new items about scientific publishing in the October
18, 2001 issue of Nature:
\"Journal editors defect in protest at subscription costs\" on p.
662-663;
\"The best and worst of times--What winners will emerge from the
battles over access to scholarly date?\" by David R. Worlock, on p. 671;
\"Lessons for the future of journals--Science journals can continue to
thrive because they provide major benefits,\" by Carol Tenopir and Donald W.
King, on p. 672.
If you have an e-subscription to Nature, you can access the journal
at: nature.com\"

Larry Potter Not Taking Flight

Salon has This Story on author N.K. Stouffer and her book \"The Legend of Rah and the Muggles\".

This is the book first published in the 1980s that has more than a few similarities with Harry.
Her books aren\'t selling and her lawsuit isn\'t going so well either.

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ACLU censorware Export Report released

Seth Finkelstein writes \"The ACLU has released a major new report concerning
censorware:

Sites Blocked by Internet Filtering Programs

Edelman Expert Report for
Multnomah County Public Library et al., vs. United States of America, et al. \"

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Music Labels Target CD Ripping

jen writes \"N\'Sync\'s new CD can\'t be played or copied onto PCs.
While I\'m not necessarily crying about not being able to listen to N\'Sync at work [I am! says Blake], if I can make mix tapes, why not mix CDs?
\"Labels are reluctant to talk about their copy protection plans for fear consumers will be annoyed with any new restrictions. However, they\'re
already experimenting with copy-protection technology. \"

Full PCworld.com Story \"

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Library installing toilet alarms To Stop Sex

Charles Davis writes
\"Library bosses in Aberdeen are installing alarms in the
toilets to stop readers having sex in them.
The alarm goes off when more than one person tries to
enter the toilet at the same time.
Aberdeen Central Library staff have been forced to close
both the Ladies and the Gents.
According to the Daily Record, council bosses say drug
abusers have also been using the toilets.
Story from
anan
ova.com
\"<

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A New Approach to Filtering

From Phil Agre of Red Rock Eater Digest fame:

Community Web filtering seems like a good idea, and it\'s time to explore automated tools to support it. In this article I will suggest a design for a Web-based filtering tool. I cannot participate in building such a tool, but I would be happy to try out any prototypes
that others might construct. I have established a discussion list for people who might be interested in working on a tool . . .

Here, then, is my proposed design. I am sure that people who design Web-based services for a living can do better, but I also hope that any designers will listen to my rationales, which are based on years of experience running a community Web filtering service by hand.

The \"webfilter\", as I\'ll call it, is a cross between a discussion list, a weblog, and a bookmark file. It is not just a weblog, since it includes numerous functionalities to deal with long lists of URL\'s. Nor is it just a discussion list, since the goal is to produce a
reasonably clean and orderly presentation of the URL\'s. Nor is it just a bookmark file, because of its community nature . . .

More with thanks to wood s lot

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University Presses See Jump in Demand

From Publishers Weekly:

Costco is hardly the most likely account for Yale University Press. But since September 11, that\'s exactly what the discounter has become, ordering the house\'s Taliban by Ahmed Rashid in numbers that have helped send the book as high as number two on the New York Times paperback bestseller list.

After a decade of trying to move into the trade, university presses now find the trade moving to them. Authors like Princeton\'s Bruce Lawrence (Shattering the Myth) have made nearly 80 media appearances since the terrorist attacks, while Rutgers UP director Marlie Wasserman found packs of editors at Frankfurt clamoring for her attention.

\"Sometimes we labor in the vineyards producing books with good information while everyone else is doing celebrity bios. It\'s a real morale boost to know that people are still interested in what we do,\" said Wasserman.

More (registration required).

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Independents to Join BookScan

The NYTimes Reports that more independants are signing up for BookScan.

This is the company that will be rewriting the bestsellers list soon, to show us what is really selling best. Under the new agreement, Bookscan will pay an undisclosed amount to the American Booksellers Association.
Remember when Soundscan started and everyone said \"Who the heck is Garth Brooks\"?

Could libraries gang up and do this for circ stats?

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