News

Chicago Library Responds To Fox News Story

Response from Chicago Public Library Commissioner Mary A. Dempsey to the so-called Fox news story by Anna Davlantes inquiring if libraries were no longer necessary.

Here's a snip: "I am astounded at the lack of understanding of public libraries that your Monday evening story, Are Libraries Necessary, or a Waste of Tax Money? revealed. Public libraries are more relevant and heavily used today than ever before, and public libraries are one of the better uses of the taxpayers’ dollars. Let me speak about the Chicago Public Library which serves 12 million visitors per year. No other cultural, educational, entertainment or athletic organization in Chicago can make that claim.

The Chicago Public Library, through its 74 locations, serves every neighborhood of our city, is open 7 days per week at its three largest locations, 6 days per week at 71 branch libraries and 24/7 on its website which is filled with online research collections, downloadable content, reference help, and access to vast arrays of the Library’s holdings and info."

Experts To Russia: Forget Spies; Read The Newspaper

From an information literacy angle comes this story about Russia sending spies to find info that arguable could be easily found in other sources. Excerpt from story: "This reflected the mentality of the institution that is willing to spend millions and millions of dollars to get readily available information," Cohen says.

Maybe they need to hire a librarian.

Full piece on NPR

Superman could fly into your town

Rather than traveling the galaxy defending the universe from dark forces, Superman may soon arrive in your hometown in a very pedestrian way.
As part of the Grounded story line that kicks off in July with issue No. 700 of DC Comics' Superman series, the Man of Steel will walk across the USA to reconnect with the everyday people he is committed to protecting.

The story may be fictional, but many of the places and people that Superman will visit are real. DC Comics is asking readers to write in and campaign for their towns and residents to be depicted in the 13-issue Superman series.

Series writer J. Michael Straczynski and DC's editorial team will select the featured locations.

"Because Superman is a symbol of hope, I wanted folks to have a chance to bring Superman into their town, into their neighborhood, in the pages of the book," Straczynski says.

Full article

"Condiment Vandal" Busted Pouring Mayo into Book Drop

Via The Huffington Post:

"Authorities say a 74-year-old Boise woman arrested after pouring mayonnaise in the Ada County library's book drop box is a person of interest in at least 10 other condiment-related crimes.

Joy L. Cassidy was picked up Sunday at the library, moments after police say she pulled through the outside drive-through and dumped a jar of mayo in the box designated for reading materials."

[full story at the Huffington Post]

Library of the Year: Columbus Ohio

Columbus’ public library system is getting the cover story treatment in an upcoming edition of Library Journal after being named library of the year by the trade publication.

Library Journal and educational publisher Gale disclosed Monday that the 21-branch Columbus Metropolitan Library system won the annual honor. The award will be presented at a June 27 reception at the ALA Annual in Washington, DC. The library also wins a $10,000 award and will be featured on the cover of the publication in its June 15 issue.

The publication said the honor goes each year to the library that “most profoundly demonstrates service to community, creativity and innovation in developing specific community programs and leadership in creating programs that can be emulated by others.” Singled out were the Columbus library’s homework help and job help centers, expanded in recent years as more unemployed Central Ohioans turn to the free service to help in the employment hunt.

Congratulations to the winning library!

LOC as Concert Hall and Sir Paul McCartney as Headliner

Paul McCartney confessed he was "slightly nervous" in the leadup to Wednesday's big concert at the White House, where President Barack Obama was presenting McCartney with the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

An all-star cast lined up to perform at the East Room tribute concert, including the Jonas Brothers, Faith Hill, Stevie Wonder and Jerry Seinfeld. Also to appear: Emmylou Harris, Elvis Costello, White Stripes singer and guitarist Jack White and Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl. McCartney himself was to perform as well.

McCartney, 67, is the third recipient of the Gershwin prize, awarded by the Library of Congress. It is named for the songwriting brothers George and Ira Gershwin, whose collections are housed at the library. Previous recipients of the Gershwin award are Stevie Wonder and Paul Simon.

McCartney played a private concert at the library on Tuesday, and said he'd grown up listening to music by the Gershwin brothers. Librarian of Congress James Billington credited McCartney for "symbolizing and humanizing the global soundscape," with his music and his activism around the world.

Those not lucky enough to snag tickets to the East Room gig can catch the concert July 28th, when it's televised on PBS' "In Performance at the White House." AP story.

Student Found Dead in Northwestern Library

Details about the death of School of Continuing Studies student Brian Tsay remained murky Monday, the day after a library staffer discovered the 25-year-old's body in a University Library bathroom according to a report in the Daily Northwestern.

The Northfield, Ill. native’s cause of death was unclear and pending toxicology results after an examination by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office Monday morning. A spokesman at the office said no determination would be made on the student’s death until test results are released; those reports usually take six to eight weeks, according to another spokeswoman. Both declined to be named.

Spokesmen from the Evanston Police Department, which investigates deaths on NU’s campus, were unavailable Monday, Memorial Day.

The library, 1970 Campus Drive, was closed Sunday and reopened Monday at 8:30 a.m.

May 25: Towel Day Honors Hitchhiker Author Adams

Wired's This Day in Tech blog reminds us that today is Towel Day in honor of the late Douglas Adams;

"Two weeks after the death of Douglas Adams, author of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, fans get together and celebrate May 25 as “Towel Day” in his memory. The tradition continues each year since."

You also might want to take a look at the Towel Day site.

Survey on Library Publishing Opportinities

I am toying with the idea of starting up a new professional journal for people in the library world, but I'd like to get some feedback on the idea. I have created a short online survey (under 10 questions!), and I'd really appreciate it if you people out there in library land (library students and paraprofessionals are emphatically welcome to participate) would spare some time to take it. Thanks -- and please feel free to pass this survey along.

Click here to take survey

lexicography

Perhaps the simplest explanation of lexicography is that it is a scholarly discipline that involves compiling, writing, or editing dictionaries. Lexicography is widely considered an independent scholarly discipline, though it is a subfield within linguistics.

Many consider lexicography to be divided into two related areas. The act of writing, or editing dictionaries is known as Practical Lexicography. The analysis or description of the vocabulary of a particular language, and the meaning that links certain words to others in a dictionary, is known as Theoretical Lexicography. Theoretical Lexicography is particularly concerned with developing theories regarding the structural and semantic relationships among words in the dictionary. Since it involves theoretical analysis of the lexicon, Theoretical Lexicography is also known as Metalexicography.

In order to better understand lexicography, it may help to know what a lexicon is. Lexicon is a term used in linguistics to indicate the archive of lexemes. Lexemes are abstract, minimal units in a language that link related forms of a word together. For example, the words fly, flight, flew, flying, and so on, are all morphologic variations of the lexeme fly. Fly is the lexeme because it is the base from which these word variations arise. -- Read More

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