Academic Libraries

From Movies to Minutia: DVDs Eyed for Archival Uses

A Slashdot Thread pointed the way to an NIST Data Preservation Program to develop specifications for "archival quality" CD and DVD media that agencies could use to ensure the procurement of sufficiently robust media for their long- term archiving needs (i.e., 50 years and longer).
The working group shares information and best practices concerning the use of DVD and related technologies in the federal government. It will identify the needs of the federal community in relation to the durability of storage media and work with industry to develop suitable archival grade specifications.

An Online Library Struggles to Survive

Anonymous Patron writes "9/8/2003 Daily Report from The Chronicle of Higher Education -- THE FOR-PROFIT ONLINE LIBRARY QUESTIA, having competed unsuccessfully with college libraries, is scaling back and rethinking its business plan. -> SEE The Chronicle Site for the full story.
(may require password and id until it moves into the free zone of the chronicle)"

They say Questia that looks desperate. It has drastically shrunk its work force, halted its marketing campaign, and closed offices in Los Angeles and New York, leaving only the Houston headquarters open. The company also has scaled back aspirations for its library collection and expanded its target audience to include high-school students.

Student plagiarism resources

edu">David Dillard writes "This is a selection of resources from a long
list of publications, websites and
webliographies of resources about plagiarism,
a topic of renewed interest as a new academic
year is commencing.

The full resource may be reviewed Here.

Using Ask-a-Librarian service to make up for reduced hours

Milner Library at Illinois State University (Normal), is looking for its consortium-based live web reference service to make up for a decrease in open hours. State budget shortfalls and increased costs have caused Milner and many other Illinois academic libraries to cut hours, purchases, and staff. The library is cutting back by 20 hours this year, after a 30 hour cut last year. What doesn't make sense in the story is that the live chat hours referred to are roughly the same as the library's hours. Don't know if that's a misstatement. Anyway, the rest of the story, which includes information about the sorry state of Illinois academic libraries is here.

Princeton's archives hold many secrets.

Bob Cox spotted a Princeton Packet Article on the Mudd Library which contains an impressive array of archives, including a collection of U.S. public policy papers; the notebooks of Arthur Krock, former Washington bureau chief of The New York Times; the wartime journals of former CIA director Allen Dulles, John Foster's brother; the papers of former Democratic presidential candidates Adlai Stevenson and George McGovern; and the papers of former Secretary of State James A. Baker III.

A Campus Fad That's Being Copied: Internet Plagiarism

The NYTimes Is Reporting on a study conducted on 23 college campuses that has found that Internet plagiarism is rising among students.
Thirty-eight percent of the undergraduate students surveyed said that in the last year they had engaged in one or more instances of "cut-and-paste" plagiarism involving the Internet, paraphrasing or copying anywhere from a few sentences to a full paragraph from the Web without citing the source. Almost half the students said they considered such behavior trivial or not cheating at all.

"There are a lot of students who are growing up with the Internet who are convinced that anything you find on the Internet is public knowledge and doesn't need to be cited," Professor McCabe said.

Old files stress Oakdale Prison

The Iowa City Press-Citizen reports deep inside the prison at Oakdale sit hundreds, if not thousands, of files on former inmates, filling cabinets ringed by stacks of file boxes.
The records date from October 1984 to present and include paperwork on every person who has passed through the system - an estimated 20 million pages, up from 13 million four years ago. Similar records already have filled storage space at prisons in Anamosa, Fort Mad-ison, Mount Pleasant and Mitchellville.

Library of Congress saved roots of genre

An Anonymous Patron writes "This Says the Archive of American Folk Song was founded in 1928 within the Library's Music Division and curated by fabled folklorist John Lomax. In 1932, Lomax and his 17-year-old son, Alan, headed south with a 500-pound recording machine built into the trunk of their car. Sponsored by the Library, they were among the first folklorists to take equipment into the field, recording not only the folk songs they encountered but the personal histories of the musicians and the social and cultural contexts of the music.

The Lomaxes returned with a treasure trove of folk, blues, gospel, Cajun and Tex-Mex music. Alan Lomax recounted this and subsequent southern journeys in "The Land Where the Blu"

GAO: Archives' Proposed System Lacks Key Elements

Here's A Short internet.com piece on a new report [PDF] by the General Accounting Office that says The National Archives and Records Administration's (NARA) proposed Electronic Records Archive (ERA) project is missing key elements of recognized industry standards.
Charged with preserving government records in perpetuity, NARA says electronic records "pose the biggest challenge ever" due to the rate of technological obsolescence combined with the expanding number of diverse electronic records created on different systems within the government.

Vast Martin Luther King archive displayed before sale

Charles Davis writes "from
An AFP Story on Sotheby's, which is to sell more than
7,000 items from King's archives next
month.

King's family wants to sell the entire
collection to a single buyer, which
they hope will display his archive."
They say it's been very important to the family that this archive be preserved in an institution, if possible, so that the public and scholars may have unfettered access.

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