Libraries

How to help libraries learn about open source

Right now, if you walked into my public library and pelted me with questions about open source—like, "What is it?" "How does it work?" "How can I use open source?"—I'd rattle off answers so fast you'd be walking out with a new tool or technology under your belt. Open source is a big world, so of course there are some things I don't know, but guess what? We have the Internet and books right at our finger tips. Saying that you don't know the answer is fine, and patrons will respect you for it. The key is helping them find the answer.
From How to help libraries learn about open source | Opensource.com
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Inside the New York Public Library's Last, Secret Apartments

Some have spent decades empty and neglected. "The managers would sort of meekly say to me—do you want to see the apartment?" says Iris Weinshall, the library's chief operating officer, who at the beginning of her tenure toured all the system's branches. The first time it happened, she had the same reaction any library lover would: There’s an apartment here? Maybe I could live in the apartment. "They would say, look, just be careful when you go up there," she says. "It was wild. You could have this gorgeous Carnegie…" "And then… surprise!" says Risa Honig, the library's head of capital planning.
From Inside the New York Public Library's Last, Secret Apartments | Atlas Obscura
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WA State Dems push to unblock LGBT material at schools, libraries

Several House Democrats have put forward legislation that would ban schools and libraries from banning Internet access to LGBT material, which is sometimes blocked by filters aimed at keeping out obscene content. The "Don't Block LGBTQ Act," from Rep. Mike Honda, D-Calif., is meant to ensure that young LGBT people are able to access material that might help them.
From Dems push to unblock LGBT material at schools, libraries | Washington Examiner
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“That’s a library? I thought it was a church for a religion that didn’t allow makeup.”

But then. Maybe librarians shouldn’t try to be, maybe the library should be a place where one can focus on the written word, where people can enter the inner conversation instead of the mundane blabber. The library as a place to connect with someone far away (the author) and someone deep inside (the mental model of the reader); the library as a church instead of just another social space.
From The Library and the Church – lib{cache
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Why Libraries’ Survival Matters

In advance of “Do Libraries Have a Future?” a Zócalo Public Square event in partnership with WeHo Reads, we asked eight writers to reflect on the most memorable library they ever visited, what it meant to them, and whether it should exist in 100 years.
From Why Libraries’ Survival Matters | PublicCEO
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The media of our expression seems to have decreasing longevity.

This experience set me to thinking again about the ephemeral nature of our artifacts and the possibility that the centuries well before ours will be better known than ours will be unless we are persistent about preserving digital content. The earlier media seem to have a kind of timeless longevity while modern media from the 1800s forward seem to have shrinking lifetimes. Just as the monks and Muslims of the Middle Ages preserved content by copying into new media, won't we need to do the same for our modern content?
From 'We're Going Backward!' | October 2016 | Communications of the ACM
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Google swallows 11,000 novels to improve AI's conversation

As writers learn that tech giant has processed their work without permission, the Authors Guild condemns ‘blatantly commercial use of expressive authorship’
From Google swallows 11,000 novels to improve AI's conversation | Books | The Guardian
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The world's oldest library gets a 21st century face lift

"We were always discovering things as we were ripping out walls," she says. One standout discovery for her was a hidden room that had a 12th century cupola made with intricate lattice wood. "It was this extremely refined and unusual type of roof that was hidden away," she recalls. "It's typical of the element of surprise you fine in Fez. You'll have these narrow streets and find a small door that enters into an amazing courtyard."
From The world's oldest library gets a 21st century face lift - CNN.com
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Don't Call Me Baby, Sweetie or Cupcake!

I’ve worked at my local public library long enough to be on a first-name basis with many of our patrons. And the rest greet me with the courtesy and respect that, as a trained professional, not to mention a woman over 50, I deserve. Except for when they don’t. From time to time, a patron will call me “sweetie.” Or “honey-bunch.” Or “dear.” I have to put up with it, but I don’t have to like it. And I‘m not alone. Recently a fellow librarian posted this lament on Facebook: “A patron just called me baby. Can I go home now?” The comments this inspired from other librarians were sympathetic:
From Don't Call Me Baby, Sweetie or Cupcake! | ZestNow
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Australian library releases free, remixable webcomics maker

"Libraries aren't there to enforce a curriculum: they exist for the whole community to learn and create on their own terms. That's what makes this comic maker project special: it's meant to open the doorway to an understanding of 'digital literacy' which is not just about consumption; which is open, flexible, and most importantly, capable of surprising us.
From Australian library releases free, remixable webcomics maker / Boing Boing
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