1901 UK Census Available Online, Heavily Used

An editorial from the London Evening Standard:

The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. Or so LP Hartley told us in the opening sentence of his novel The Go-Between, published in 1953. But we\'re now keener than mustard to catch hold of all our yesterdays.

Two days ago, the Kewbased Public Record Office was stunned by the overwhelmingly avid response to its decision to put the 1901 census on line (the most recent census released under the 100-year rule that protects individuals\' privacy). I\'m surprised at its surprise. The Public Record Office should have known that, these days, everyone wants to be a DIY historian . . .

More. The 1901 census data can be examined here, although as Ananova recently reported, heavy demand is making it difficult to use the site.

Attacks cause feds to yank open records

Showmenews has This One about the US federal government’s decision to remove \"public\" information from the public domain.

\"We don’t do this lightly,\" Swindells said. \"The program is specifically designed to provide public access to these materials. Pulling something runs against the grain of the system.\"

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Fun With Words

A few interesting English oriented sites.Shakespeare Search serves Shakespeare enthusiasts and students with a line-oriented search engine. fun-with-words.com is the website dedicated to amusing quirks, peculiarities, and oddities of the English language. 2002 List of Banished Words from Lake Superior State University, is the 27th annual List of Words Banished from the Queen\'s English for Mis-Use, Over-Use and General Uselessness.

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Like the Taliban, some U.S. parents fear free minds

USA Today is running an Editorial that says the bands of parents who anoint themselves as thought and morality police are America\'s version of the Taliban.

They are found in communities across America, demanding that our high school classrooms and libraries be purged of books whose contents they disagree with

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The Fifth \'Potter\' Raises Questions

The NYTimes raises A Few Questions on the next Harry Potter Book.

There are some questions about the details of the next installment, including how Ms. Rowling will address Harry\'s growing interest in girls and whether she will stick with her previous American publisher, Scholastic.

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\'Lord of the Rings\' Fuels Literary Slugfest

From the London Evening Standard:

The Tolkies are on the march. Mark Lawson, Mr Arts at the BBC, dared to express his dislike of the hobbit books and the new film - and for his trouble has received more abuse from hobbit loyalists than he has ever known before from any quarter.

Lawson has come out fighting. \"Escapist literature has its place, but if a book, and a children\'s book at that, means so much to you that you can hate other people for disliking it, you\'ve walked through the library into some other room: and perhaps a ward,\" he retorted . . .

More.

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Sklyarov Heads Home

Dmitri Sklyarov headed home on New Year\'s Eve:

Russian computer software specialist Dmitri Sklyarov charged with violating the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in the United States returned to Moscow on Monday. According to an Interfax reporter, at the airport he was welcomed by his family and close friends.

Sklyarov told Interfax that he would see the New Year in with his \"near and dear ones.\"

He\'s banned from working on projects related to e-books under the terms of his release, however. More from Interfax, with thanks to Politech.

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Harry Potter Hateline Launched in UK

From The Guardian...

\"A Harry Potter \"hateline\" phone service set up in Austria has been extended to the UK, Ananova reports. Callers pay a minimum of 75p to vent their anger at the boy wizard.
The books may be bestsellers and the film has been a smash hit, but it seems not everyone is Harry Potter mad. The phoneline has been extended to Britain, Germany and Switzerland \"by popular demand.\" More

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Local Places Global Connections

This Report [Local Places Global Connections: Libraries in the Digital Age] focuses on how libraries are coping with the use of new technologies to maintain their role as society\'s primary information providers, what challenges they are facing, and who is doing a good job.

\"The question, \"What will happen to libraries?\" has a larger context, for we as a nation find ourselves asking the same of universities, of public media, of religious institutions, and of government\'s social mandate. Each of these questions, in turn, derives from an even more basic question: \"How will Americans live their lives as citizens, as economic actors, and as social beings?\" These, after all, are the great questions of the twenty-first century, and they constitute our challenge. It is my fervent hope that when our distant descendants read the literature of the twenty-first century they will find references to libraries of the power of Shakespeare\'s and Jefferson\'s. Whether they will or not depends on our efforts today.\"

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It\'s a smaller World Wide Web after all

Bob Cox passed along A Story on The Web Server Survey from Netcraft that found that the number of Web sites dropped by 182,142 from November to December last year. That decline marks only the second time the company\'s survey, first released in 1995, has found fewer sites online in a monthly period.

The BBC has a story as well.

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Library of Congress to Deacidify One Million Books

The Library of Congress has recently signed a five-year,
multi-million dollar contract, with a Pittsburgh, PA preservation company, to remove the acid from one million books. The project is focusing on books dealing with the United States. More

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Palm reads rise in e-book sales

ZDNet reports that Palm\'s eBook sales rose more than 40%
last year. They sold 180,000 eBooks in 2001. Palm also released
lists
of top-selling eBooks.

Full Story

96-year-old author of Nancy Drew series still writing columns

This story from the Columbus Dispatch is about Millie Benson,
author of most of the Nancy Drew books. She wrote under the
pseudonym Carolyn Keene (she is my favorite ND author),
beginning a childhood favorite that still is in print and has sold
more than 200 million books. Then she went into journalism.....

Full Story

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Gather Round The Book Fire

James Nimmo passed along Another Story with more details on the big book burning in NM.

800 protesters showed up against the fire, which lasted little over half an hour, focused primarily on the book burning - referencing biblical uses of fire as a tool of cleansing, the \"evil\" influence of witchcraft, and the righteousness of ridding oneself of so-called spiritual hindrances.

J.R.R. Tolkein, \"Star Wars\" material and \"The Complete Works of William Shakespeare\", Popular fashion magazines such as \"Cosmopolitan\" and \"Young Miss,\" and various adult magazines, were also burned. Even a ouiji board was tossed on the fire.

One protester displayed a Stephen King novel she allegedly rescued from destruction.

See Also.

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CD/DVD Impermanence and Expensive Solutions

Optical discs such as CDs and DVDs have a lifetime far too short for anything like \'permanent\' storage. While some folks are taking things to extremes with \'a micro-etched nickel disk with 2,000 year life expectancy\', archival libraries (and other interested folks) might want to look at Century Discs.

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IT & Global Ecological Crises: Soul and the Sustainability of Librarians

Cate Gable writes...

\"If we can read pages of text at will on little electronic devices-Will books survive?
If we can read news literally up-to-the-minute online-Will newspapers survive?
If we can buy whatever we want at the lowest possible price online-Will stores survive?
If we can get information from Google anytime of the day or night-Will libraries survive?
More

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Library\'s Walls will Remain Bare Until City Approves Display Policy

After a gay pride display caused a ruckus in Anchorage, AK last year, the library is no longer able to display anything until a display policy is drafted. The city is responsible for reviewing and legalizing the display. It was submitted for their approval six months ago. Politics anyone? More

Rules of Information are an Easy Reach

ExLibris editor, Marylaine Block, has written an article on what separates information seekers from information professionals, and how the secret to information seeking success is a matter of knowing where to look. More

Online Journalist\'s Legal Protections Increased Substantially.

Tom Regan over at CSMonitor.com reports that online
journalist\'s legal protections have increased
: \"in a court decision
that was largely overlooked by the mainstream media, a New York Supreme
Court judge [Paula Omansky] has issued a ruling in a libel case
that extends the same speech protections to online journalists that their
print, radio, and TV colleagues have enjoyed since the famous Sullivan
v. New York Times decision of 1964.\"

The defendant--editor, publisher, and journalist for NarcoNews.com--had
reported that a president of a Mexican bank (the bank, Banamex, was bought
by Citigroup during the trial) was connected with drug traffickers. 
After Banamex had lost (repeatedly) their claim of libel in Mexican courts
they moved their complaint to a New York, USA court.  Tom Regan reports
that the judge\'s decision is the first time that the protections provided
by the Sullivan
v. New York Times
decision have been extended to online journalists
.

EFF.org, who helped the defendant with an Amicus
Curiae Brief
, has a copy of the court\'s
decision
.  See also the EFF
press release
, and the EFF
archive
about the case, as well as an extensive list of articles
about the case
compiled at NarcoNews.com.

Banamex may appeal the decision.

-Hermit ;-)

A Heroine for Today\'s Youth

I have a feeling This One from the Nevada Appeal is a repeat, but it\'s a nice read.

\"Some people think the School Librarian is a tame and innocuous creature. But behind the bun, the tweed and the glasses lurks a fiery defender of Children\'s Right to Know. By fostering the inquiring minds of our youth, regardless of race, sex or attention deficit disorder, she symbolizes one of our most cherished freedoms -- the freedom to learn.\"

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