Ask LISNews

Collection Development

Blaira writes \"I would like to know how other medium sized public libraries do their collection development (specifically the staffing component) Does one librarian do all the buying for a system, or a committee, or does each branch order separately.
Which works better, both for the library budget and the patrons? \"

My question is, are committees ever the best way to get something accomplished?


How does Information Science Fit In?

watinee nilngam writes \"
I would like to ask you about my problem and I hope that you can help and solve my problem certainly.I have the hard assignment about finding the meaning of information science and the relation between information science and many field (politic,culture or economy).All of these must appear in update articles.\"

Tuff question...anyone out there have a good anwer? How do we in this area fit in to \"the big picture\"?


Everything you wanted to know about LISNews.

You may have noticed a lack of email and headlines from LISNews lately. That was mostly due to the fact that I (Blake Carver) was sick, and I started a new job that is keeping me pretty busy.

How can you post your own stories? Who am I? What is this all about? Where do the ads come from? Why don\'t the headlines by email work? Read on for all the boring details.


Library checkout software

Michelle writes \"Hello, you folks look very well
connected and knowledgeable -- so I am asking you for
some tips on locating something.

I am helping develop a corporate library for my
company. I am looking for library book & magazine
checkout software that is either Windows-based or
preferably web-based (to use on our company\'s
intranet). Can you give me any ideas about where I
might start my search, or some relevant terms that
might help me on a web search?
Thanks for any tips you can provide.

Winnebago comes to mind...
What are some other possibilities?


Access to R rated video for children under 17

Barb O writes \"I would like feedback from those \"in the field\" regarding if there are set policies for restriction of \'R\' rated videos in place, how long have they been in place and are they working? \"

A few weeks back we had a few stories on this topic from MA and PA, check them out, and let Barb know what you think. You can get Links to the stories by clicking below. Is 13 too young to view \'R\' rated videos from the library? Is it our job to decide what children watch? What Would The Librarian Do?


Getting your staff to use your intranet pages

Philip Keane writes \"Dear colleagues

I\'m preparing a paper on getting your library users to move to using your intranet pages.

We\'re a Medical Library serving both clinicians and research staff, and have many links to electronic journals, OVID Medline, specialised lists of websites relevant to areas served by the institution.

I\'d be interested to hear from other librarians on lisnews on their experiences and their approaches to stimulating use of intranet-delivered information services.

My contact details are as follows:

Philip J Keane,
Head, Library & Educational Information Services,
Royal Adelaide Hospital-IMVS Library,
Institute of Medical & Veterinary Science,
PO Box 14, Rundle Mall SA 5000
Phone 08 8222 3224
Fax 08 8222 3152
Mobile 0418 301 529

[email protected]


Dialogue 2000 Town Meetings

Kathleen de la
Pena McCook
writes \"I am seeking information and
hoping this may be a way to expand my search. I would like
to hear from librarians anywhere in the U.S. who have
participated in the Dialogue 2000 town meetings taking place
across the U.S. between January-May. These are sponsored
by the national network of Community Action Agencies. They
are intended to raise the awareness of the American people
about issues of poverty and the need to address them
effectively to give a voice to low-income people in the
policy making proess and to identify and mobilize the state,
local, and national resources that low-income individuals,
families and communities need to be more self-sufficient.
National website is

Local initiatives are community-based. Please respond to


The role of Non-Print Media in Public Libraries

Someone wrote in with this.

With the advent of so many electronic resources in public libraries, the role of non-print media in the collection is often overlooked. Our limited resouces are often divided between electronic and paper resources. Yet, in looking at my own libraries circulation statistics, a great deal of our circulation is in the form of non-print media.

Non-print media is also frought with conflict. Public libraries, who have no problem buying bestsellers in paper, veer away from top media titles.

It seems like we have just enough media to pacify the community without any attempt at being proactive in this area.\"
What do you think?


The end of News Groups? is running a story on how MSN is dropping support for newsgroups. We are removing newsgroups from MSN servers because we now have a better communication vehicle provided by MSN Web Communities--including chat, message boards, email and Web pages,\" the representative wrote in an email. While newsgroups will no longer be supported on, they will still be available at the company\'s corporate Web site, seems to think this is the begining of the end for newsgroups. What does the LIS community think of this? Most librarians are subscribed to a number of different lists, and use them as a primary source for news and information. Certainly this is not the begining of the end, or is it?


populist software rating startup

Charles Greenberg writes
\"I\'m one of those librarians that doesn\'t have enough to
do already and has wondered why populist sentiment for
software inadequacies (bad design) couldn\'t be harnessed and
aggregated to actually help consumers identify the simplest
and most usable programs. I decided Y2K might be the year
that a community of software raters could be found to launch
this, so I started

I do this on my own time with my own home resources, but I
believe there will be eventual benefit for librarians that
want an idea of what programs are simplest to use in a
number of categories, or they may want to refer library
users to my site.

I just started this site and need populist participation.
Librarians and educational technologists who have studied
usability and design will recognize that my rating survey
for each program is based on Jakob Nielsen\'s usability
heuristics for software design. Privacy for all individual
ratings and identities is maintained, and I don\'t see why a
rater couldn\'t have the application being rated open at the
same time they complete the survey.

I would appreciate feedback and



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