Two Canadian cities have world's best public libraries, survey finds

Two Canadian cities, Vancouver and Montreal, have the world’s best public library systems, according to a new survey by German researchers.

Library mavens at the Heinrich Heine University in Dusseldorf studied libraries in 31 major world cities, from London and Los Angeles, and from Shanghai to Sao Paulo, Brazil. Los Angeles finished in the middle of the pack in the ranking (16th), which took into account the wide array of services that libraries provide to their readers, including availability of printed books and digital information.

Two U.S. library systems finished third and fourth: Chicago and San Francisco. And the very bottom of the rankings were London (30th) and Dubai (31st).

http://www.latimes.com/books/jacketcopy/la-et-jc-two-canadian-cities-have-worlds-best-public...

Synchronicity bookshelf

Synchronicity bookshelf - a fun way to explore books using your local library. Read the details here.

When did there become too many books to read in one lifetime?

A tough nut to crack to be sure, but Randall Munroe has taken a stab at it on his wonderfully quirky What If? site.

"The average person can read at 200-300 words per minute. If the average living writer, over their entire lifetime, falls somewhere between Isaac Asimov and Harper Lee, they might produce 0.05 words per minute over their entire lifetime. If you were to read for 16 hours a day at 300 words per minute,[4] you could keep up with a world containing an average population of 100,000 living Harper Lees or 400 living Isaac Asimovs."

Public Libraries Are Better Than Congress, Baseball, and Apple Pie, Say Americans

According to the Atlantic Magazine:

A new Pew study finds that not only do Americans adore libraries, but a majority of us think they’re adjusting to new technology just fine.

Some 94 percent of Americans say that having a public library improves a community and that the local library is a “welcoming, friendly place.” 91 percent said they had never had “a negative experience using a public library, either in person or online.”

These sound like incredible approval ratings for any U.S. public institution. So I wondered: Just how incredible are they? How do other icons of Americana compare?

Library Lovers League Holds Flash Mob at NYPL

Yesterday here in New York City, the Library Lovers League protested changes at the New York Public Library, specifically speaking out against a proposal that would move many items in the New York Public Library collection to a storage unit in New Jersey.

Bibliophiles who took part in this “street theater flash mob” wore sandwich signs featuring book covers in front of the iconic Stephen A. Schwarzman Building.

Follow this link to view a news clip from Pix 11 .

Help Us Please Requests Filipino College Librarian

Letter received via Facebook message to Save Libraries and reprinted its entirety:

Dear Sir/Madam:

In our effort to continue meeting the research needs of our students of EASTERN SAMAR STATE UNIVERSITY GUIUAN CAMPUS, we knock at your kind heart to assist us financially, provide or donate us with books or others reading materials to restart what has been ruined by super typhoon “Yolanda”, in our campus!

Our Campus Library accommodates an average of 3,000 students (undergraduate and graduate) distributed to the different programs of the campus: education, engineering, technology, hotel/restaurant and entrepreneurial management programs.

At present, the Campus Library was vastly devastated by the wrath of super typhoon on November 8, 2013, damaging around P15M of our library building, equipment, and collection. Hence, this appeal for your benevolent assistance so we can help restore our library, attend to the research needs of our clientele and start resume our library services the soonest possible time.

You may visit our Facebook account ESSU GUIUAN UNIVERSITY LIBRARY for the complete photos to see the extent of damage typhoon Yolanda has ruined our Library.

Your assistance for this purpose will be highly and gratefully appreciated. If our prayer finds favor in you, please visit our campus or you may contact us at this cell number 09158717354/09199738753.

Thank you. May God return the blessings to you a thousand fold.

Respectfully yours,

EVA H. ABLETES (Sgd)
College Librarian

2013 I Love My Librarian Award Winners

2013 I Love My Librarian Award Winners

Congratulations to the 10 winners of the 2013 Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian Award! Thank you to all the library supporters who sent in nominations.

2013 recipients were selected for their dedicated public service and the valuable role they play in our nation’s communities in transforming lives through education.

More than 1,100 library patrons submitted detailed stories regarding how their librarian had an impact on their communities and lives.

Read on to learn more about this year's winners.

http://www.ilovelibraries.org/2013/13winners

Obama’s Library, Advisers’ Dream

The question of who guides Mr. Obama’s next chapter may seem distant to the public. But, as aides to former President Bill Clinton have demonstrated, proximity to an ex-president translates into life at the intersection of wealthy donors, powerful networks and conference circuit perks. And with presidents departing the White House as relatively young men, there are many years to bask in the Oval Office afterglow.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/17/us/politics/obamas-library-advisers-dream.html

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode 265

This year's final episode presents an essay. No new episodes will be released until further announcement is made in 2014. In the interim we encourage you to enjoy the back episodes of the 2013 reboot of The Tomorrow People. (N.B. No sponsorship has been provided by The CW, we just like the show enough to recommend it)

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis) (Free Lossless Audio Codec) (Speex), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net.

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/.

9:15 minutes (12.74 MB)
mp3

Ten Stories That Shaped 2013

Once more we look back at the notable library happenings of the past year.

Memorable Stories

10. Timbuktu Library Rescue

In January, Islamic militants torched an archive that had contained many ancient manuscripts. Fortunately, prior to this, people had removed the materials from the city.

9. The Hudson Falls Free Library Reading Contest -- Read More

OpenHatch brings open source to campus

OpenHatch brings open source to campus
Our solution? Open Source Comes to Campus In a Box. We’re carefully documenting every part of our events, from the materials we present to the way we build our publicity websites, from food and space checklists to templates of all the emails we send. Our hope is that local organizers will be able to use our materials to run their own events, as has happened with our Python Workshops.
http://opensource.com/education/13/12/openhatch-brings-open-source-campus

A School Librarian Found The First Ransom Note in American History

The Story Behind the First Ransom Note in American History

http://blogs.smithsonianmag.com/history/2013/12/the-story-behind-the-first-ransom-note-in-am...

One day last March, Bridget Flynn, a school librarian who lives in Philadelphia, was searching for an old family drawing to print on the invitations to her daughter Rebecca’s bridal shower. As she and Rebecca rummaged through the several generations of family artifacts—letters, photographs, an envelope of hair cuttings—she keeps in plastic bins in her basement, they found a stack of small envelopes tied together with a black shoelace.

“Oh, honey, these are love letters,” Flynn said...

Koha trademark case won by NZ developers

You can Listen or read a good summary Here.
"If the trademark had been given, then potentially Liblime could have restricted the use of who used it so, the utter worst case was perhaps we would have had to rename the software in New Zealand which would have caused massive confusion."

[Via the great and powerful Gary Price]

Caltech Announces Open Access Policy

Caltech Announces Open Access Policy
http://www.caltech.edu/content/caltech-announces-open-access-policy
On January 1, 2014, a new open-access policy for faculty's scholarly writings will take effect at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). According to this policy, approved by the faculty at their June 10 meeting, all faculty members will automatically grant nonexclusive rights to the Institute to disseminate their scholarly papers, making wider distribution of their work possible and eliminating confusion about copyright when posting research results on Caltech's websites.

Caught Up By Circumstances

Due to spending 11 hours visiting an excellent facility outside Ashtabula County operated by the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and hideous winter weather increasing travel time in terms of additional hours, there is no episode for release on Wednesday. The Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions apologizes for this inconvenience. The second episode originally slated for Wednesday release will in fact be released later this week.

In the meantime, we suggest enjoying an episode or two of the 2013 reboot of The Tomorrow People that is available online.

Norway is digitizing its whole library

The National Library of Norway is planning to digitize all the books by the mid 2020s.

Yes. All. The. Books. In Norwegian, at least. Hundreds of thousands of them. Every book in the library's holdings.

By law, "all published content, in all media, [must] be deposited with the National Library of Norway," so when the library is finished scanning, the entire record of a people's language and literature will be machine-readable and sitting in whatever we call the cloud in 15 years.

The whole story is at The Atlantic.

OCLC and Yelp increase visibility of libraries on the Web

OCLC and Yelp increase visibility of libraries on the Web
http://www.liswire.com/content/oclc-and-yelp-increase-visibility-libraries-web
OCLC, the nonprofit computer library service and research organization, is working with Yelp, the leading website and mobile app that connects consumers with great local businesses, to increase public access to local library information.

Yelp is integrating information from the database of library listings maintained through the OCLC Library Spotlight program to supplement existing library listings on Yelp.com. Information provided through OCLC has already been added to over 1,400 library listings on Yelp.com, ensuring that accurate addresses, phone numbers, hours and other information will be available in addition to information already listed on Yelp.

The OCLC Library Spotlight program offers a free, easy-to-use service with which any library can add, edit and update its own profile that will then appear on online listing sites. Yelp is the first to work with OCLC, which will incorporate more partners in the future to give libraries greater visibility on the Web. Libraries can already claim their free account and use a suite of business tools on Yelp. The Library Spotlight program improves access to online library information by providing a convenient way for Internet services to update multiple library listings at once, at scale.

“Once a library’s profile is established in the Library Spotlight program, the data can be shared with strategic partners like Yelp, driving traffic and interest to the local library,” said Chip Nilges, OCLC Vice President, Business Development. “The program enables participating libraries to benefit from OCLC’s extensive network of partnerships. It’s fast, easy and free to participate in the program. And it has the potential to literally put every library on the map.”

Pew: How Americans Value Public Libraries in Their Communities

How Americans Value Public Libraries in Their Communities
http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2013/12/11/libraries-in-communities/
Americans strongly value the role of public libraries in their communities, both for providing access to materials and resources and for promoting literacy and improving the overall quality of life. Most Americans say they have only had positive experiences at public libraries, and value a range of library resources and services.

In Honor of Melvil Dewey's Birthday...

Nobel winner declares boycott of top science journals

Leading academic journals are distorting the scientific process and represent a "tyranny" that must be broken, according to a Nobel prize winner who has declared a boycott on the publications.

Randy Schekman, a US biologist who won the Nobel prize in physiology or medicine this year and receives his prize in Stockholm on Tuesday, said his lab would no longer send research papers to the top-tier journals, Nature, Cell and Science.

Schekman said pressure to publish in "luxury" journals encouraged researchers to cut corners and pursue trendy fields of science instead of doing more important work. The problem was exacerbated, he said, by editors who were not active scientists but professionals who favoured studies that were likely to make a splash.

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2013/dec/09/nobel-winner-boycott-science-journals?CMP=twt_fd

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