September 2006

Today’s Public Libraries Are Thriving Technology Hubs

Despite 99% of all Public Libraries in the United States provide free public access to the Internet, they have not seen a corresponding increase in budgets.

Excerpt: The study, “Public Libraries and the Internet 2006,” was conducted by the Information Use Management and Policy Institute at Florida State University (FSU) and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the American Library Association.

“Libraries do an incredible job of connecting people with technology, but demand for this service is significantly outpacing libraries’ capacity to make necessary upgrades, purchases, and repairs,” said John Bertot, Florida State University professor and author of the report.”

See Full article at:

Today’s Public Libraries Are Thriving Technology Hubs That Millions Rely on for First or Only Choice for Internet Access.

Preserving history one page at a time

Columbia Basin Herald: Day by day, time is taking its toll on our state’s historical documents as the luster is leaching from the ink and the atmosphere decaying the pages.

Records from before the birth of our state to every historical event since are contained in the storage facilities of the state archives. The largest is a facility in Tumwater, which the state rents for $1 million a year. Another is a 1950’s era atomic bomb bunker.

No Books In Foreign Languages Say Some Tennesseeans

Some people who live in Lewisburg –filming location for the 1999 movie, “The Green Mile”(TN), are upset that the local library has bought some children’s books in Spanish. They also bought a couple in Japanese, Russian, Polish and French and protesters added that those books shouldn’t be there either. Little bit of a story here.

National Archives Proposes Wider Checks of People Using Its Facilities

A short one from The Chronicle Daily News Blog: Researchers and all other visitors at facilities run by the National Archives and Records Administration would be subject to close inspections of their personal property under regulations proposed today in the Federal Register. The proposal, for which the agency seeks public comment by November 27, would broaden the scope of people subject to searches and would expand the number of National Archives facilities where the searches would be conducted.

Libraries Face Net Access Challenges

AP: The nation’s public libraries have significantly expanded wireless and high-speed Internet access but face budget and space constraints in continuing to meet demand, a new study finds.

Nearly all libraries have Internet access and offer it to the public, and branches average 11 public-access terminals, comparable to findings in a 2004 survey.

The new study, sponsored by the American Library Association and the Bill&Melinda Gates Foundation, found a doubling of wireless access, to 37 percent. High-speed access _ defined as 769 kilobits per second or faster, though that can be shared among many terminals _ grew to 63 percent in the latest survey, up from 48 percent.

But John Bertot, a Florida State University professor and lead author of the report, said many libraries reported problems keeping up with patrons’demand, especially as new Web services such as video consume even more bandwidth and computer power.

Who’s movin’ and shakin’ this year?

I’m forwarding a call for nominations that was emailed to me …

The editors of Library Journal need your help identifying the emerging leaders in the library world. The sixth annual Movers & Shakers supplement will profile 50-plus up-and-coming individuals from across the United States and Canada who are innovative, creative, and making a difference. From librarians to vendors to others who work in the library field, Movers & Shakers 2007 will celebrate the new professionals who are moving our libraries ahead. The deadline for submissions is November 1, 2006.

To send a nomination, you can use the online form [warning: print out a copy before you submit, in case your submission fails and everything you
wrote vanishes] or print out the PDF and mail it to Ann Kim at LJ, 360 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10010, or fax to 646-746-6734.

Special Collection Libraries Choose Koha @ LibLime

Congrats to LibLime who announced today that three more special library collections have migrated to Koha, the first open-source Integrated Library System. Recent migrations include the Native Village of Afognak Library in Alaska, USA; the Alaska Statewide Mentor Project also in Alaska, USA; and the Childcare Resource and Research Unit, a resource room at the University of Toronto, Canada.

British Library fury over map thief’s ‘soft sentence’

Times Online: The British Libray reacted angrily last night after a renowned American antique dealer who stole historic maps was jailed for 3.5 years and ordered to pay 1 million compensation.

Clive Field, the library’s scholarship and collections director, said it was extremely disappointed by the leniency of the sentence imposed on Edward Forbes Smiley III by a court in New Haven, Connecticut.

Smiley, from Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, stole almost 100 maps from various collections, including a world map worth 53,000 from the British Library. He cut pages from historic books with a razor blade and sold them on to private dealers or collectors.