Theory

Google and Yahoo - illiterate monks?

There's a fantastic thread over on the SHARP-L list: "Google and Yahoo - illiterate monks?".
The SHARPists have been discussing Google, electronic texts, and the future of the printed word. There's over a dozen messages so far, and they're all worth a read.

The Political Economy of Reading

The lecture, "The Political Economy of Reading", [PDF] the second of the John Coffin Memorial lectures in the history of the book arranged by the University of London, is now published.

It is published under Creative Commons, a new form of limited copyright, that enables researchers, teachers, and students to dowload, copy, and circulate it without risk of running into the normal restrictions.

Need for First Amendment Education

Kathleen writes "Judge Marjorie O. Rendell, First Lady of Pennsylvania has stated, "The only way to hold on to our freedom is to give it away -- and liberally -- to those who come after us. In your own sphere of influence, in your own way, I invite you to join with me and give back meaning to the word "citizen." Concerned by a recent study that demonstrates a decline in understandidng of the First Amendment, Judge Rendell advocates citizenship education.

“The Future of the First Amendment,� found that educators are failing to give high school students an appreciation of the First Amendment’s guarantees of free speech and a free press. The study by researchers from the University of Connecticut questioned more than 100,000 high school students, nearly 8,000 teachers, and more than 500 administrators and principals."

Information Literacy Weblog: WILU report - As we may think

Here's the slides from the keynote of the Canadian annual information literacy conference.
WILU report - As we may think.
The second part of that title was taken from the paper by Vannevar Bush (1945). They use his vision of the scientist in a technically connected work to reflect on the situation now (when not just scientists, but citizens more generally have access to the internet and cheap devices such mobile phones). They argue that this connectedness has raised issues and challenges that Bush did not envision.

Another key part of our argument presents information literacy as not just a personal attribute, but as a soft applied discipline, leading to its application in a field of social action.

The Chronicle: Colloquy Live Transcript: The Smog of Data

An Anonymous Patron writes "The Chronicle: Colloquy Live Transcript Colleges are among the most wired environments anywhere. Most professors say the Internet has enhanced teaching and scholarship. At the click of a button, scholars can connect with students, comment on colleagues' work, and locate and obtain research materials. But at what cost?"

Libraries of the Future

Way back in 1993 Jamie McKenzie asked What will we find when we visit a School library in 2005? Well, since it's now 2005, let's take a look back at some of mcKenzie's imaginations regarding possible futures of a smokestack information system we still call "libraries."
The Worst Case Scenario: The Information ATM. McKenzie says banks were forced to change by the arrival of new technologies, de-regulation and a marketplace driven by client demands for convenience, quality and customization. The worst case scenario is that new technologies and electronic access to information threaten to eliminate both school "libraries" as we have known them and those who have been serving as information "tellers." Jamie goes on... "Imagine the impact of Information ATMs on school and community libraries - small, hand-held PDAs with wireless connection through satellite to all the information centers of the world." The words "independent of time and place and subject discipline" pose the greatest promise and the greatest threat.


The Best Case Scenario: Media Specialists as Pilots, Information Mediators, IT Managers and Curators. Thanks to having access to so much information, at least four emerging roles offer considerable promise. Media Specialists as Pilots, Media Specialists as Information Mediators, Media Specialists as IT Managers and Media Specialists as Curators.

"Libraries of the Future" finishes with a conclusion that could be written today:

"The time-honored tradition of introducing students to literature with book talks and dramatized readings deserves protection. So does the careful coaching of individual students so that passions meet with good books and reluctant readers develop appetites for books. The basic point is the necessity of adjusting roles to meet the challenges of new technologies. Media specialists can maintain a leadership role as schools move into the next century with school media centers serving as the core of an active learning program dedicated to student inquiry, investigation and research."

Article: Technological Means of Communication and Collaboration in Archives and Records Management

Anonymous Patron writes "Article: Technological Means of Communication and Collaboration in Archives and Records Management: This study explores the international collaboration efforts of archivists and records managers starting with the hypothesis that Internet technologies have had a significant impact on both national and international communication for this previously conservative group. The use and importance of mailing lists for this purpose is studied in detail. A quantitative analysis looks globally at the numbers of lists in these fields and the numbers of subscribers. A qualitative analysis of list content is also described. The study finds that archivists and records managers have now created more than 140 mailing lists related to their profession and have been contributing to these lists actively. It also "estimates" that about half of the profession follows a list relating to their work and that archivists seem to like lists more than records managers. The study concludes that mailing lists can be seen as a virtual college binding these groups together to develop the field."

Slashdot | Games Better Than Books?

Anonymous Patron writes "Slashdot Points The way to This One thay says Three University of Wisconsin-Madison professors, among the top researchers in learning through game-playing, explained the advantages of games over traditional teaching tools Thursday evening."

But did George Washington sleep in that suit?

Cortez writes "The curators and historians are thinking they might have the genuine article,
Report newhousenews.com
"The moment of truth came in October when a textiles team invited from Colonial Williamsburg concluded that, yes, the suit was indeed American made. That was all Mount Vernon curator Carol Borchert Cadou needed to hear before she was jumping up and down, right there in the presence of Washington's clothing. She terms the finding a "blockbuster.""

Does Internet Use Pose a Threat to Libraries (Yet)?

Anonymous Patron writes "Search engines or card catalogs is a study from The University at Buffalo School of Informatics. A major national study conducted by the University at Buffalo School of Informatics and the Urban Libraries Council found five years ago that increased Internet use in the U.S. had not produced a reduction in the public use of libraries.

The study presented a new consumer model of the U.S. adult market for library and Internet services, one that consisted of "information seekers" who used both resources, but in different ways.

With Internet use continuing to grow by leaps and bounds, the UB researchers now are poised to undertake a much larger national study to see what, if any, changes have taken place over the past five years."

Syndicate content