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Op-ed in the NYT: E-Books and Democracy by Anthony W. Marx (president of the New York Public Library)
WRESTLING with my newspaper on the subway recently, I noticed the woman next to me reading a book on her smartphone. “That has to hurt your eyes,” I commented. Not missing a beat, she replied, in true New York style, “My font is bigger than yours.” She was right.
Among Amazon skeptics, patience for the online retailer’s lack of profits has become a source of bemused agony. No other marquee tech company could get away with, at best, earnings in the low millions (to say nothing of ending last year in the red). Despite such low numbers, Amazon’s shares have enjoyed unprecedented success over the last few months.
But the past few days have seen the onset of what could turn into what the short sellers would see as a major correction. If so, it’s not only shareholders who could suffer. A major stock downturn led by investors no longer willing to wait for Jeff Bezos to work miracles could eventually mean higher prices for Amazon customers.
To understand why, first consider the fortunes of one of Amazon’s main rivals.
Is this the first ever web page? If not, CERN would like to know
Boffinry nerve-centre CERN has attempted to recreate the very first website to mark 20 years since the official launch of the World Wide Web.
It is feared the first ever web page is lost to the sands of time as it was changed daily and any backups are few and far between. However the team has pulled up a snapshot of the very first website dating from November 1992, which the eggheads say "may be the earliest copy we can find". The CERN bods are still hunting around for earlier versions.
"I’m not arguing that online courses have no value. They have tremendous value for those who are self-motivated and prone to seeking out knowledge on their own. But in this regard, online courses play the role of a public library. And just as libraries are utilized by a fairly small percentage of the population and have not solved our educational needs, so too will online courses fail to be the solution to educating the masses.
Archivists are the specialists who snatch objects from oblivion. They have long spent their careers cloistered, like the objects they protected. But now many of these professionals are stepping out. A main reason is the Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York. The group, which recently surpassed 500 members, holds monthly events that draw a young, well-dressed crowd, hungry for chances to network, train and socialize. Members not only work at libraries, where archives have long resided, but also at such organizations as the Fashion Institute of Technology, the Junior League, the Episcopal Church, the Philharmonic, the Stock Exchange and the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
A FEW weeks ago, a friend received a flier in the mail inviting her to an event in Manhattan for patients with multiple sclerosis.
“What’s in it for you?” said the flier from MS LifeLines, a support network for patients and their families that is financed by two drug makers, Pfizer and EMD Serono. “Strategies for managing and understanding your symptoms. Information about available treatments for relapsing M.S.”
The thing is that my friend, who requested that I keep her name out of this column, does not have multiple sclerosis, an autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system.
But last year, she did search online for information about various diseases, including M.S., on a number of consumer health sites. She also subscribed to an online recommendation engine where she looked up consumer reviews of local physicians.
As aggravated circumstances have continued longer than expected, the engineer also took on duty as acting producer this week since we continue to be short-handed. In lieu of a news miscellany a commentary is presented about online vigilantism and the need for teaching Internet ethics in light of Zero Hedge reporting a falsely identified Boston suspect being found dead, PCMag.com reporting that Reddit apologizing for getting their bomber crowd sourcing wrong, and PJ Media's Chicago editor saying not nice thing about social media in the Boston incident.
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This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.6:38 minutes (7.6 MB)
Where in the U.S. can you find the the biggest bibliophiles? Online e-tailer Amazon just reached into its mammoth pool of purchasing data to pull out its third annual list of cities in the U.S. where the “most well-read” among us apparently reside.
Twenty librarians in the Ogden School District could be out of a job.
The twenty Library Media Specialists were called to a mandatory meeting on Friday morning where they were told that their contracts won’t be renewed and their positions will no longer exist starting July 1.
According to the superintendent, Ogden School District entered the 2012-2013 school year with a $2.7 million deficit. He said they’ve avoided cutbacks in past years, but they finally have to do it this year.
Anita Demetropoulos, a Maine shopkeeper, figured she would never see the day when her most relentless competitor, Amazon, would be forced to collect sales tax.
Now that Congress seems ready to do that, she is no longer sure it matters. Even in losing, the e-commerce powerhouse is triumphant. It no longer needs the tax break to vanquish its foes — and could even make money by collecting the new taxes for other retailers.
Librarians Without Borders is recruiting Board members with non-profit management experience, to help us develop communications and fundraising strategies. Join our team! More information, including the application, can be found here. Apply by May 1 and feel free to send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Librarians Without Borders (LWB) is an action-oriented non-profit organization that strives to narrow information access inequities worldwide by supporting libraries in developing regions and domestic communities. We enact our mission by collaborating with partner communities to identify their needs and then mobilize our volunteers – the core being student librarians in a service-learning model – for in-the-field development. We are powered by student committees at the majority of graduate library and information science programs across Canada, who are coordinated by an Executive team comprised of volunteer, professional librarians.
Kindoma Storytime combines e-books with video sharing features. So now you can share a bedtime story with your child or grandchild from anywhere, if you both have iPads, good Wi-Fi, and have downloaded the free app from iTunes.
Originally a research initiative at Nokia, the project has been spun off as an independent company with the project leader, Tico Ballagas. According to Mr. Ballagas, the iPad was not around when the project was conceived, but has become the ideal device for delivering synchronous storytimes.
From The Onion:
SANDUSKY, OH—In a moment of confusion, area teenager Eric Dooley briefly walked into a local teen outreach center Tuesday, a place that neither he nor any of his teenaged friends would ever knowingly enter.
"Oh, geez. I'm sorry," the 15-year-old said as he quickly assessed the four battered foosball tables, outdated PlayStation console, overly friendly counselor, and garish orange and purple paint scheme—all intended to appeal to him—before exiting the facility in less than six seconds. "This isn't where I'm supposed to be. Sorry. Sorry."
Dooley reportedly joined a gang later that afternoon.
When you see the word "Amazon", what's the first thing that springs to mind – the world's biggest forest, the longest river or the largest internet retailer – and which do you consider most important?
From Guardian UK:
These questions have risen to the fore in an arcane, but hugely important, debate about how to redraw the boundaries of the internet. Brazil and Peru have lodged objections to a bid made by the US e-commerce giant for a prime new piece of cyberspace: ".amazon".
The Seattle-based company has applied for its brand to be a top-level domain name (currently .com), but the South American governments argue this would prevent the use of this internet address for environmental protection, the promotion of indigenous rights and other public interest uses.
Google executives Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen — coauthors of a new book, The New Digital Age — recently returned from a highly publicized trip to North Korea. In the second part of their conversation with NPR's Audie Cornish, they discuss the role of the Internet in more repressive countries. "We fear that the natural action for, in particular, autocratic governments experiencing what we describe as 'virtual urbanization' will be to balkanize the Internet," says Cohen, "filtering out content so that way the Internet experience in that particular country looks as much like the physical society as possible."
Mr. Blum is the editor of Amazon Kindle Singles, a Web service that is helping to promote a renaissance of novella-length journalism and fiction, known as e-shorts.
Amazon Kindle Singles is a hybrid. First, it is a store within the megastore of Amazon.com, offering a showcase of carefully selected original works of 5,000 to 30,000 words that come from an array of outside publishers as well as from in-house. Most sell for less than $2, and Mr. Blum is the final arbiter of what goes up for sale.
DALLAS — President Obama has left little mystery about how he views his predecessor. “The failed policies of George W. Bush” wiped away a budget surplus and “squandered the legacy” of bipartisan foreign policy. Mr. Bush put two wars “on a credit card,” led the country away “from our values” and “crashed the economy."
But Mr. Obama will surely say none of that when he helps dedicate the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on Thursday. Addressing a crowd of Bush supporters and administration veterans, the 44th president will no doubt extoll the virtues of the 43rd president and praise his years of service to the country.
It has become an awkward ritual of the modern presidency that the current occupier of the Oval Office is called upon to deliver a generous historical judgment of the previous tenant. With the opening of each new presidential library, the members of the world’s most exclusive fraternity put aside partisan differences to honor the shared experience of running the nation in difficult times.
E.L. Konigsburg, the author of the 1967 children's book From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, about two children who run away from home to live secretly in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, died Friday. She was 83.