Reference Books Nearing Extinction

Jackie Bourdelaine writes \"According to this one at the San Francisco Chronicle, \"space-hogging reference tomes are obsolete.\" Links to replace some of those useless reference books are even included, along with some reviews. \"

They say LibrarySpot is the place to go for answers.


God\' monkey sits through lecture before studying

Charles Davis writes \"A monkey sat quietly through an economics lecture at an
Indian college before going to the library and flipping
through a holy book.
Students at Madanpur Mahabir College in Bhubaneswar,
Orissa, say the monkey listened to the lecture with \"rapt
The monkey then went to the library and looked at the
Ramayana, a Hindu holy book, and sat on a statue of the
monkey god Hanuman before quietly leaving the college.

Full Story \"


Zimbabwe Book Fair Struggles On

The Zimbabwe International Book Fair, \"a week of book deals and literary debate . . . unmatched anywhere else south of the Sahara,\" has just wrapped up in Harare:

Last weekend, an Angolan publisher spoke on \"The Challenge of Publishing in a War-Torn Country\" and a Botswanan publishing manager explored \"The Risk of Producing Books in Indigenous Languages.\" During the week, writers could choose among workshops like \"Copyright Control: Can Africa Achieve It?\" and \"What Influences Does Religion Have in Writing for the Future?\" In hotel corridors and downtown cafes, scholars continued their discussions and debates in French, Portuguese and English.

In the gardens, amid row after row of bookstalls, eager publishers displayed even greater range, with works in adopted tongues and indigenous ones, like Yoruba and Tigrinya, Zulu and Afrikaans and Zimbabwe\'s languages, Ndebele and Shona . . . Librarians learn how to make their little budgets go a long way and can win small book-buying prizes. [More from the New York Times (registration required).]

Searching for Google\'s Successor

Wired News is reporting today about the goal of some new search engines that hope to \"beat Google at its own game.\" Google users love it. It\'s simple to use, and because it is the largest URL database, it returnes a high number of results. But, as the article points out, \"Google has a major flaw: It returns too many results. Most of Google\'s results are irrelevant, and it is too difficult to wade through them all.\" more...

Public Internet Stations Wide Open to Hackers

For the Chicago Sun Times, Ian Hopper writes...

\"Travelers eager to plug their laptops into wireless Internet networks cropping up at hotels, airports and coffee shops need to be on guard: Their e-mail and Web browsing can be easily intercepted.\" more...


Library Enforcers Defending Copyright in Jordan

According to this story in the Jordan Times, Mamoun Talhouni, the new director of the National Library in Jordan, will send a team of library personnel out to inspect stores selling music, computer software, and other items. Any items found without valid licenses will be confiscated and the store owners\' case referred to prosecutors.

Retired Educator Opens Library

For The Southern Illinoisan, Jim Muir writes...

\"Retired educator Patricia Horn will see a longtime dream become a reality today when the Royalton Public Library opens for business. Horn, who is president of the library board, can hardly contain her enthusiasm when she speaks of next week\'s grand opening. The battle to obtain a new building has not been without its struggles and setbacks and the fight to get a new library has taken nearly two decades. The first library was actually no more than a reading center, which was opened in 1981 and located in a classroom of the old Royalton School. \"All of our books were donated and the librarians all worked on strictly a volunteer basis,\" Horn said. \"more...


SC legislature Says No Filter, No Funds

In July the South Carolina Legislature passed a bill requiring that libraries filter 90% of their computers or else lose state funding. According to the article, one library would stand to lose about $75,000 in state aid. Ouch! more...


Racist\'s case settled

The lawsuit filed against the Schaumburg Township District Library by Illinois white supremacist Matthew Hale has been settled. Hale sued after the library revoked permission for him to use a meeting room for a speech. He will now be appearing at the library on a Saturday evening, after closing time.


Sklyarov Interviewed by New York Times

The Times caught up with Dmitri in Cupertino, where he\'s awaiting phase two of litigation :)

Dmitri Sklyarov rarely reads electronic books. \"There are almost no e-books in Russian,\" said Mr. Sklyarov, the 26-year- old Moscow cryptographer who was arrested in Las Vegas last month under a 1998 digital copyright law. \"I prefer paper books. They\'re much easier to carry with me, and can be read anywhere.\"

In fact, most people still prefer paper books. Unlike music and film, books have yet to be popularly accepted in digital format. Nevertheless, the nascent market has heightened the publishing industry\'s sensitivity to the potential for digital piracy, enough so that it has initiated the first criminal case under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. And Mr. Sklyarov is the first to be charged.

[More (registration is required.)]


NewBreed Feature: The image of librarians, real and imagined

Juanita and Colleen scored big with the new issue of NewBreed Librarian, as they have published some cool research by Deirdre Dupre, which finds that librarians are overconcerned with their image and status given the actual perceptions of the public.

A message from Juanita about the other content in this issue is inside:


Would you like sour cream on that?

One of the sites I regularly check in my current hunt for employment is HotJobs. I\'ve noticed that when I search for "library" in the Illinois listings, a lot of the hits are ads for assistant managers at Taco Bell and KFC. Probably pay better than a lot of public library jobs ...


Search Engines have no Smell

In an editorial for the Christian Science Monitor, Joan Silverman says search engines are inefficient but fast and convenient. But: \"There is no search engine that provides the scent and texture of a library.\" Her praise for the sense of community libraries provide is welcome, but it\'s more than a little troubling that a professional writer is doing her research using search engines instead of the library.


The current state of \'fair use\'

In this interview, Lawrence Lessig, Stanford law professor and supporter of consumer\'s rights, discusses the current state of \'fair use\' in the context of peer-to-peer networks. Lessig is one of the more notable critics of the DMCA. He will be the keynote speaker at the upcoming O\'Reilly Conference on Peer-to-Peer and Web Services.


Harry Potter Video Released ... It\'s Not What You Think

For Florida Today, Breuse Hickman writes...

\"Does reading the Harry Potter books turn kids onto witchcraft? Yes, according to a controversial, locally produced video entitled \"Harry Potter: Witchcraft Repackaged - Making Evil Look Innocent.\" more...


Reading at the Rate of 10 Cents Per Hour

Chris Taylor writes, \"Come on, hurry up. The clock is ticking. This column will self-destruct in 60 seconds. Haven\'t reached the end of the first paragraph yet? That\'ll be another 25 cents, please. You think I\'m joking? Well, if one company\'s vision of the future of online reading is to be believed, folks who eyeball each line with a snail-like finger had better have deep pockets. On Monday Rosetta Books, a major player in the nascent e-book market, announced a \"$1 for 10 hours of reading\" deal. You pay a buck, download the book, then 10 hours later the text gets all scrambled up. Haven\'t finished? Tough luck; you have to pay again to unlock it. Right now this is just a trial deal attached to one tome — Agatha Christie\'s \"And Then There Were None\" — but you don\'t have to be Poirot to know that it won\'t end there, or that 10 hours\' worth of reading won\'t stay that cheap forever.\" more... from Time Even More from CNet News.

How and Why Are Libraries Changing?

Denise A. Troll, Distinguished Fellow at the Digital Library Federation has a draft of How and Why Are Libraries Changing? posted.

\"The purpose of this paper is to initiate discussion among a small group of university and college library directors being convened by the Digital Library Federation (DLF) and the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) to explore how and why libraries and library use are changing. This exploration is envisioned as the first step in a larger initiative that includes conducting research and presenting the research results to library directors, their provosts, presidents and faculty.\"

Sometimes I think Cam wants to be a librarian.


New Bibliomystery set at the New York Public Library

Matt writes \"The Christian Science Monitor\'s review of Allen Kurzweil\'s new bibliomystery.
The Grand Complication has enough librarian stereotypes to go around. However, the main character, a cataloger named Alexander Short, certainly reminds me of some of the characters I\'ve met in library school and beyond.

Full Story

My personal favorite of this sort of thing is Charles A. Goodrum\'s Dewey Decimated. \"


Academic Face/Off on DMCA

Brian Surratt writes \"This article from the Chronicle of Higher Education discusses two Carnegie Mellon professors who are on opposite sides of the DMCA debate. David S. Touretzky (Anti-DMCA) is notable for maintaining the Gallery of CSS Descramblers at his college at CMU, Michael I. Shamos, was paid $30,000 by the Motion Picture Association to conduct experiments and provide testimony to support DMCA in court. The saga is far from over... \"


Are Libraries the Next Napster?

Junk e-mail goddess strikes again. See what you miss when you\'re on vacation? It took me like 2 days to find the link to this from an e-mail message. God knows I\'d hate to be accused of lifting something verbatim. Anyway, every now and again, library stuff makes it into major news publications. Anyone seen Time lately? Someone is suggesting that we may be the next Napster. How so? Weren\'t we here first? Like over a hundred years first? more... if you really want it.


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