Submitted by Ben on July 9, 2001 - 11:27am
Dallas resident George Dawson, who learned to read at age 97, has died at age 103, reports MSNBC. In less than seven years of literacy, he wrote an autobiography and inspired many other people to pick up a book.
If, as Borges said, paradise is a kind of library, then Mr. Dawson is probably glad he learned to read.
Submitted by Ryan on July 9, 2001 - 11:13am
Federal Computer Week profiles the emerging Collaborative Digital Reference Service this month:
Most baseball fans know that New York Yankee Don Larsen pitched a perfect game — allowing no batters to reach base — against the Brooklyn Dodgers during the 1956 World Series. Although the game has been well documented, one man walked into the National Library of Canada with a certified stumper: Did Larsen go to a \"ball-three\" count against any Dodger batter?
It’s a reference librarian’s job to try to find answers to patrons’ questions, no matter how arcane. In this case, library staff members couldn’t find the answer using their own print and electronic resources, so they turned to a new resource, the Collaborative Digital Reference Service (CDRS), and waited for another library somewhere in the world to provide the answer. [More . . .]
Submitted by Blake on July 9, 2001 - 11:07am
Here\'s A Nifty One from Business 2.0 on a cool machine that takes a digital file, from which it can print, bind, and trim a book of any size in a matter of minutes. It\'s about the size of an industrial photocopier, and uses regular paper.
Instant, cheap books!
\"Book binding has always been a black art,\" says Marsh. \"If you put those processes into automotive plants, the whole industry would die. They\'re dangerous, and they can\'t be replicated reliably. I mean, you got people sticking their hands under moving blades.\"
Submitted by Ieleen on July 9, 2001 - 9:36am
From The News Gazette (Champaign, IL), Diane Haag writes...
\"Mahomet-Seymour Superintendent John Alumbaugh counts himself lucky to have been able to fill the two school librarian positions he had open for next year ... It turns out the stereotype of the gray-haired keeper of books has some truth to it. In 1998-99, 60 percent of Illinois librarians were 50 or older, meaning they will all soon be eligible for retirement ... At the same time, the state\'s only two ALA accredited schools have a total of about 175 students enrolled – all they were meant to have. That\'s the problem, it\'s difficult to get the degree.\" [more...]
Submitted by Blake on July 8, 2001 - 11:34pm
Tanya writes \"I\'m so
disgusted by this that I can barely think of anything to
write. The Salt Lake County Library System has been
without a Director for eons. So, in a bid to fill the
position, the County has decided that a MLIS is not
necessary for the job. They will also consider people
with MBAs or Masters of Public Administration. And
who came up with this brilliant idea? None other than
the Library Board. Aargh!!!!
The story is in Sunday\'s Edition of the
Deseret News and will be available for for free for one
You can check out the employment ad here .
Beware, it might make you ill.\"
Submitted by Ryan on July 8, 2001 - 3:14am
A New York University librarian has discovered two 19th century newspaper articles that shed light on the origins of baseball:
It is as elusive as the search for Atlantis, as tangled in legend as the quest for the Holy Grail. For nearly a century, historians have trolled stacks of dusty tomes in hopes of unearthing the origins of baseball. . . Now, two newspaper references to baseball have turned up that show that an organized version of the game was being played even earlier in New York City. The articles, discovered by a librarian at New York University, George A. Thompson Jr., bolster a growing consensus that baseball emerged gradually, by evolution and not by invention. [More from the New York Times]
Submitted by Celine on July 6, 2001 - 9:22pm
On July 4th, television producer Norman Lear announced that his copy of the Declaration of Independence would be taken on a tour of presidential libraries [see this LA Times story]. However, residents of North Texas don\'t have to travel any further than Dallas to see a copy this weekend - Dallas Public Library already has one on display. Apparently, it\'s in excellent condition after being \"found\" (there\'s that word again) in the basement of a Philadelphia bookstore in 1968. It\'s also the only copy permanently displayed west of the Mississippi. The full story from the Star-Telegram, which I think is from Arlington, TX.
Submitted by Celine on July 6, 2001 - 9:12pm
The motto of this story is, always be nice to your patrons because you never know when they might leave you a million. A Vancouver library patron, who always felt \"well-treated\" by the staff, left $1.4 million to the Library Foundation, reports this story from the Seattle P-I
Submitted by Celine on July 6, 2001 - 9:06pm
Almost 200 years ago, Japanese geographical surveyor Ino Tadataka made the first detailed map of Japan. The original was lost in a fire, but now an almost complete copy has been found in the Library of Congress. The full story from the Japan Times. (It\'s so cool that it\'s actually dated tomorrow [Saturday]).
I\'m always intrigued by these stories, like the Lincoln flag, of things being \"found\" in libraries. Where were they? Didn\'t anyone know they were there?
Submitted by Ryan on July 6, 2001 - 12:02pm
Thinking of offering e-books to your patrons? Wondering who to contact for advice? Here\'s a fairly extensive list of links to public library e-book programs around the world from the Kansas State Library.
Submitted by Ieleen on July 6, 2001 - 11:19am
Thanks to Sue for sending the link to this one from Excite News. For the Associated Press, (Denver, CO), author Colleen Slevin writes...
\"In a world where twins are illegal, a baby twin boy is \"released\" from life with a fatal injection. A girl, overcome with painful memories in a utopian society in which strong feelings are frowned upon, administers the fatal needle herself. The topics in Lois Lowry\'s \"The Giver\" have created controversy in libraries and classrooms across the country since it was first published in 1993. Parent opposition to the book\'s treatment of suicide and euthanasia helped it reach No. 11 on the American Library Association\'s list of most challenged books of the 1990s. The Newberry Medal winner was No. 10 on the last year\'s list, which was headed by \"Harry Potter.\" Lowry\'s book has been challenged in schools in at least five states since 1999, sometimes more than once.\" [more...]
Submitted by Blake on July 6, 2001 - 11:08am
The Washington Post has a Story on an e-book lending program being rolled out at public libraries across the country.
Of course publishing houses worry that the lending programs will hurt the bottom line, to say nothing of copywrite.
Speaking of copyright, there\'s more on the Adobe eBook Cracker over on PlanetEbook.com.
Submitted by Ryan on July 6, 2001 - 10:22am
The National Writers Union plans to file suit over the terms of the New York Times\' recently rewritten contract with its freelancers:
National Writers Union president Jonathan Tasini asserted yesterday that a Times contract - crafted in the wake of the Supreme Court decision - that seeks freelancers\' permission to keep their work in the paper\'s archives without additional compensation is illegal and unenforceable. \'\'They\'re demanding people sign away all their past and future rights to those articles,\'\' Tasini said in an interview yesterday. \'\'We would rather negotiate this and they\'ve just taken a very hard line.\'\' He said that unless the Times changed its policy within 24 hours, a suit would be filed today in New York. An attorney representing the writers union said the likely venue would be federal court.
[More from the Boston Globe]
Submitted by Ieleen on July 6, 2001 - 10:22am
From The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Sarah Hollander writes...
\"Public and school libraries throughout Ohio should be able to share material with next-day delivery service starting this fall. The State Library of Ohio finalized a delivery contract last week. The computer hardware and software for locating and reserving the materials should be available in a few months. The service will allow patrons to check out books and, in some cases, videos, CD-ROMs and other material from any participating library when those items aren\'t available at their home library. \"At some point in the future, we\'re hoping any Ohio resident will be able to borrow a book from anywhere in the state,\" said Roger Verny, deputy state librarian. The state library paid for the technology with $1.2 million in federal funds. It will cost libraries about $2,800 a year to participate, which will cover the cost of deliveries.\" [more...]
Submitted by Ieleen on July 6, 2001 - 10:17am
From The Los Angeles Times, Richard Winton writes...
\"Scofflaws with long-overdue materials from the Los Angeles Public Library soon will be pursued by a collection agency, the Board of Library Commissioners decided Thursday.
Commissioners approved a pilot program with an agency that recovers overdue materials and fines for more than 400 libraries nationwide. Their decision is a move away from the library\'s traditionally passive approach to tracking offenders, one that relies on automated telephone calls and notices.\" [more...]
Submitted by Blake on July 5, 2001 - 10:43pm
A federal judge has ordered the city to reinstall a
gay-pride exhibit at its main library. The court said \"We
just don\'t have a consistent and unambiguous policy
that meets the test\". No word from Mayor George
Wuerch in this one.
Full Story from freedomforum.
Submitted by Blake on July 5, 2001 - 3:19pm
Carol Reed writes \"Here\'s the URL for the story:
All this happened just because a librarian wanted a good prop for a talk she was giving.... \"
A librarian searching a historical society\'s cluttered storage area stumbled upon a flag that was in Abraham Lincoln\'s theater box on the night of his assassination.Those pesky librarians, always poking around in those dusty boxes!
Submitted by Ieleen on July 5, 2001 - 2:36pm
From the Associated Press, via CNet News, someone writes... \"Before her students write term papers, Melanie Hazen makes sure they understand one small thing: You can\'t put your name on someone else\'s work. Still, they don\'t see the harm in borrowing from a Web site. ``Taking something straight off the Internet and using it as their own, they don\'t seem to think that\'s stealing at all,\'\' said Hazen, an English teacher at Montgomery Central High School in Clarksville, Tenn. At a time when most schools and public libraries are wired to the Internet, students of all ages are being tempted more than ever to cut-and-paste others\' work and pass it off as their own. For students, plagiarism has never been easier. For teachers, combating it has never been more of a challenge.\" [more...]
Submitted by Ieleen on July 5, 2001 - 12:53pm
Here\'s another great story about libraries doing something unique for the community from The Columbus, (OH) Dispatch. Through some special funding, the Athens County, OH libraries are able to provide kids with nutritious meals throughout the summer. The program is a sort of spin off of the federal school lunch program for disadvantaged children. \"When school\'s out and the children don\'t have those meals, where do they go? There really is a substantial need,\" said Cecilia Torok, who coordinates the federal education program. [more...]
Submitted by Ieleen on July 5, 2001 - 12:39pm
From InfoWorld, Ed Foster writes...
\"This past Sunday was the day opponents of the Uniform Computer Information Transaction Act (UCITA) had been dreading for a long time: On July 1, UCITA was formally enacted as law in Virginia. Now that the day has passed, however, it turns out that there may be more reason than ever for anti-UCITA optimism.\" [more...]