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Chron.com has a sad, yet not suprising Story on the state of Questia. After almost 3 years, more than $110 million in VC, and a 300-person staff, they have yet to hit even 1,000 paying subscribers. That\'s not a mistake, not even One Thousand.
They had hoped to have 50,000 titles by February, but only have about 35,000 and another 5,000 of them not completely cleared of copyright restrictions.
T. G. McFadden Writes:
\"Questia has recently made changes to its search-and-retrieval interface (in response to suggestions from users, according to the marketing side) that represent a pretty fair misunderstanding of how the typical undergraduate will want (or need) to use the database.
Prior to this change, the initial search screen (“Quick Search”) presented the standard author, title-word, and subject options. More advanced variations on these basic themes were available in the “Power Search” mode. Now, however, the initial search screen (still “Quick Search”) combines by default all of these search types into a single search statement. This has the following result, when the search concept is the rationalist philosopher Descartes.
Much More -- Read More
There\'s an Interview with librarian Jack Colbert over on About.com (or Aboot.com if you\'re from Canada).
Jack Colbert is the creator of Librarea, \"a destination, a world, within the ActiveWorlds Universe, where individual librarians build virtual (3-D) environments, with objects that can be linked to web-based resources\".
Jack Colbert will be joining the website\'s Chat on Tuesday, April 10th, for an online discussion of Librarea and the future of libraries.
The article talks about the DIG35 standard, a standard they says is simple and universal enough to succeed. There are companies that are devising ways to automatically identify metadata within photos and videos, to save all that work that goes into typing it in.
So could this be done for books automatically to?
\"So what\'s the real story on ASPs? Do they work? Are they viable options for purchasing applications? Just as you may be surprised by the silly advice you\'d get from a Magic 8 Ball, you may be surprised to discover that you\'re probably using an ASP right now. If you have an Internet based e-mail account on Hotmail, AOL, or any similar service, you\'re an ASP user.\"
Here is an interesting article from Globe Technology on the new device called the PC Tablet that Microsoft is putting out. It\'s like a high powered Etcha-a-Sketch. Will it change the way we read and write?\"The makers of the Tablet believe the technology contained within its casing will radically change the way we read and write, moving us beyond paper to the electronic screen. There is more at stake, however, than just the physical substitution of one medium for another; it will require a huge cultural shift as society struggles to give up its addiction to paper and embrace the ethereal nature of electronics. It also has far-reaching implications for books, magazines and newspapers, not to mention libraries and museums. Ours, after all, is a well paper-trained world.\" -- Read More
Bill Drew writes \"I have started a new discussion group using Yahoo!Groups. The group is
Wireless and Libraries (LibWireless).
The purpose of this group is to discuss libraries and all types of wireless
technologies. This includes but is not limited to wireless LANs in
libraries, accessing library resources via wireless devices, and related
issues such as WLANs, wireless bookmobiles, etc. .\"
Read on for instructions...... -- Read More
Brian writes \"How will we find good information in \"the coming age of P2P\"?
Will a Doogle (distributed Google) arise? Will metadata come to the rescue?
These issues came up at a conference in San Francisco. Wired News has the Story .
An electronic discussion on XML and its use in libraries.
The Extensible Markup Language (XML) is now being used by libraries
for a variety of purposes. The purpose of this electronic discussion
is to assist library staff in learning about XML and how to apply it
to library problems and opportunities.
The discussion archive is browsable and (soon to be) searchable at
the XML4Lib web site.
Send the mesage \"subscribe xml4lib YOUR NAME\" to
(There are also reviews of new computers -- both Apple and PC -- in this issue but you need to subscribe to their website to access that article online. This costs $3.95 a month or $24 a year.)
The Consumer Reports article on filtering is now online, this article is aimed at parents considering using filters on their home computers, although it does have a sidebar specifically on the issue \"Should the government require filtering?\" (also Online ) dealing with the use of filters in schools and libraries. Between the two articles, CR points out many of the problems with filtering. They found that filters block as many as one of five \"harmless\" (in CR\'s own word) sites, but fail to block one of five sites that were objectionable. \"
The USA Today also covered this.