Your Book Delivered in 12-Minutes or Less

From Wired News MJ Rose writes...

\"Shortly before midnight on July 9, Jeff Marsh of Marsh Technologies and Peter Zelchenko of VolumeOne placed an order on the Internet for what would be the first print-on-demand book ever to emerge from a fully automated vending machine. Twelve minutes later, the book slid out of a chute on the prototype MTI PerfectBook-080 in Marsh\'s office in Chesterfield, Missouri. The book was Robin Shamburg\'s novel, Mistress Ruby Ties It Together, which explores the bizarre world of sadomasochism. Marsh said it might seem like an odd choice for such a momentous event, \"but maybe it\'s appropriate. After all, we\'ve been on our knees and chained to our machines for the past several weeks,\" he said. My question is this: You want fries with that? [more...]


Napster Given Deadline to File with Appeals Court

A Federal Appeals Court has given Napster until August 9 to file an emergency appeal which will allow them to come back online. They\'ve been offline since July 2. [more...] from The Nando Times.

Children\'s Privacy in an Online Jungle

For Web Techniques, Robert Cannon writes...

\"By and large, when it comes to protecting consumer privacy, the mantra in Washington has been self-regulation. Privacy gaffes by online companies are characterized as merely the normal growing pains of the new online economy. In addressing them, government has generally opted to negotiate resolutions with industry and consumer groups, rather than apply new regulations. As with many issues, however, when it comes to children, industry blunders have swiftly been greeted by the sound of the gavel coming down.\" [more...]

Search Engine Payola!

Ralph Nader\'s Commercial Alert has accused Hotbot and other search engines of ordering query results based on fees paid to them:

COMMERCIAL ALERT, a 3-year-old group founded by consumer activist Ralph Nader, asked the FTC to investigate whether eight of the Web’s largest search engines are violating federal laws against deceptive advertising. The group said that the search engines are abandoning objective formulas to determine the order of their listed results, and selling the top spots to the highest bidders without making adequate disclosures to Web surfers. . . The complaint touches a hot-button issue affecting tens of millions of people who submit search queries each day. With more than 2 billion pages and more than 14 billion hyperlinks on the Web, search requests rank as the second most popular online activity after e-mail. [More from MSNBC].

Thanks again to the invaluable geeks at Slashdot :)

Overdue Books? Libraries Want Them Back

For The Charleston, (WV) Daily Mail, Dan Forinash writes...

\"In one episode of \"Seinfeld,\" an investigator tracks down Jerry Seinfeld for having a long overdue library book.

In Grafton, WV reality is mirroring television, but for residents with outstanding library books, reality might not be as funny. Fines, enticements, even police arrests used to gain return of overdue books.\" [more...]


World Wrestling Federation Kicks off National Reading Initiative

Hey, whatever it takes.
Here\'s More.


Now the Puzzled Here Can E-mail a Librarian

The public library in Rochester, NY has joined the E-Reference wave with their Ask a Librarian service. According to Larra Clark, spokeswoman for the ALA, \"More and more people are seeing the benefit of using a librarian because they are the experts in managing and disseminating information. We like to call librarians the ultimate search engines.\" [more...] from Rochester

Subduing the Paper Chase ?

Federal Computer Week reports on the National Archives\' antiquated and ineffectual National Personnel Records Center:

Requests for veterans’ records pour in to the National Personnel Records Center at a rate of 6,000 a day. But the records center, a massive warehouse in St. Louis, is ill-equipped to handle the demand. In an age when agencies such as the Internal Revenue Service and the Social Security Administration can share electronic records almost instantly, the National Personnel Records Center still operates much as it did when it opened in 1955. . . On average, it takes workers at the records center 54 days to respond to written requests for records. But sometimes it takes years.

A Bibliomaniac Who Thought There was No Such Thing as a Bad Book

For The Mercury News, Dennis Knight writes...

\"Terence Crowley, taught library science with passion. One of his favorite teaching methods in the Library and Information Science Department at San Jose State University was to give students a word to research and watch them come back with the reams of information they had purveyed.\" [more...]


Library\'s E-Book Lending Program Flops

From The Bradenton, (FL) Herald, Nick Mason writes...

\"The three-month free experiment ended with only 52 e-books checked out, a disappointing result that prompted library officials to decide not to spend a dime to continue making books available on computers.\" [more...]

Libraries an Easy Mark for Thieves

From The Flint, (MI) Journal...

Any idea how thieves could smuggle 2-by-3-foot folio-sized books out of the library without detection? I wonder if there were any staff on duty? [more...]


The Mother of All Libraries

From BusinessWeek, Stephen Wildstrom writes...
\"Record companies have fought digital distribution of music with every weapon at their disposal. They\'ve won a series of tactical victories, but what do you gain if you win a war against your own customers? The record producers might want to take a page from stodgy old book publishers, who are quietly building a system to distribute digital text, which could help see to it that owners of that text get paid for its use. Along the way, publishers are developing a system for locating and retrieving material on the Web--especially the sort of copyright works now found mostly in libraries.\" [more...]


Why Can\'t Johnny Respect Copyrights?

Interesting piece from Salon on plans by the British government to inculcate school children with a respect for copyright law:

If members of the U.K.\'s Creative Industries Task Force have their way, British teenagers will soon be cramming for tests on intellectual property law and the legal implications of file-sharing. Schoolkids who download illicit MP3 files, cut and paste newspaper articles or e-mail them, or exchange JPEG files of Britney Spears will learn the error of their ways -- at least according to the copyright officials.

Thanks to Slashdot.

Belgium at the Cuban National Library

A short piece on \"Belgium: Two Looks,\" a newly opened photography exhibit at the Cuban National Library:

Klaude Kacking, director of the newspaper Cuban Review, which is sponsoring the exhibition, noted that two years of professional work had gone into the display and that it had received support from the Kingdom of Belgium’s embassy in Cuba, the National Library and a group of other sponsors. He noted that the exhibition had first been displayed in Brussels before moving to Havana, allowing the two cities to get to know each others’ cultures and peoples, through a display that characterizes the now traditional ties of friendship. He also noted that it was significant that the exhibition was opened on February 14, the international day of lovers. [More from Granma Internacional.]

More on Cuban\'s expanding relationship with
Belgium, also from Granma

Daytona home to massive library for visually impaired

has This Story on The Bureau of Braille
and Talking Book Library Services, down in Florida.

It is the largest library of its kind in the world. It\'s so
busy that the U.S. Postal Service has assigned the
library its own ZIP code. The library covers
89,160-square feet, has a combined collection of more
than 2.1 million copies of books in Braille and on tape,
and a circulation of more than 1 million per year.


English dictionary recognizes text messages

ZDNet Says the Concise
Oxford Dictionary has decided to include the shorthand
language in its revised edition published on Thursday.
Examples that have found a place in the dictionary
include BBLR (be back later) and
HAND (have a nice day). They are joined by
emoticons--representations of facial
expressions such as :) and :(.


Fun With Phonics

Remember back when it was funny to look up the word
fart in the dictionary?Well imagine how much
funnier that would\'ve been if the dictionay talked!
Bob Cox sent along This Funny Bit from over at Plastic.

Imagine all the fun you could\'ve had! Why you could\'ve
had it say penis, vagina, or Worse! All this fun from Merriam-Webst
er\'s on-line dictionary


Analyzing a good Net career

Tired of sitting on the reference desk? Had enough of
cutter numbers?
Well. maybe you should think about becoming a
Web data analyst. This Story
says the current lack of brainpower available to interpret
Web data means demand for analytic talent far
outweighs supply—by at least 2-to-1. That means even
enterprises willing to shell out big bucks for qualified
analysts will have trouble finding them.

Attributes needed for the job include statistical skills, IT
savvy and project management experience.

The virtue of virtual libraries

Here\'s An Interesting Story on
virtual libraries from New Zealand.
The author says digital libraries are
computer-based systems that do the jobs good
librarians do in the real world – acquisition, extraction of
metadata, indexing, cataloguing and organising.

\"Digital Libraries hold the possibility that we
might regain perspective on the billions of pieces of
information in the web ocean. Witten believes his
Greenstone will help, expressing his hopes through a
Maori prayer, \"May peace and calmness surround you
and may the ocean of your travels be as smooth as the
polished greenstone.\" \"


Mend Those Bindings

has This
in Book Mending, Information on tools and
technique for this essential task for librarians and
others who care for books.
It\'s a neat look at book repair, and and the
Mending materials it takes to make your sick books all

\"During mine own education the assistant dean
asked what courses we would like to see offered
during the interim semester (these were mini, one
credit courses). The overwhelming response was,
\"book repair.\" \"



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