Books

Books

Dictionary Publishers Going Digital

The NY Times has a Story on plans from Houghton Mifflin, Merriam-Webster and Microsoft, and Oxford University Press (The OED Folks) to sell electronic versions of their dictionaries, in one form or another.

\"Stifled for years by low margins and flat sales, publishers are salivating over digital licensing as a new source of revenue growth and promoting new features like audible pronunciations. But word scholars worry that the new pressures of the online market may end up favoring well-connected or well-positioned dictionaries -- some sniffingly cite Microsoft\'s Encarta -- over more authoritative lexicons. \"

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Bibliotherapy in England

Studio B Buzz suggested this One from CNN on \"Bibliotherapy\". It hasn\'t caught on in The States yet, but I bet people in California have something like this, don\'t they?


\"So where can you -- the average depressed, stressed-out, anxiety-ridden American -- find a good bibliotherapist in this country? Sorry, but you probably won\'t find one at all. Officials at the American Library Association (ALA) say that librarians in the United States aren\'t accustomed to handing out prescriptions for literary medicine. \"

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New words (and a few odd ones too) in the new dictionary

This article from the Columbus Dispatch describes a few new words and phrases that will appear in a revision of the Random House Webster\'s College Dictionary. Included are \"Arm Candy\", \"Eye Candy\", \"Senior Moment\", and \"DWB\" (Driving While Black)

\"DWB (driving while black) was added as a reference to racial profiling. The term is used sarcastically to describe the reason why police have stopped black motorists. Merriam-Webster added big time (something done on a large scale) this year. ATV (all-terrain vehicle) and smoothie (a creamy drink) also were added.\"

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The wonderfuld world of pop-ups

Bob Cox has sent in many a link over these past few
months, but this has got to be the coolest. HREF=\"http://www.library.unt.edu/\">North TX U
Library has an online display of Pop-Up and
Moveable books. HREF=\"http://www.library.unt.edu/exhibits/popup/\">
Check out the website, the images move, just like
the
books. They go back as far as 1811, many fine
examples.

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Science Group Bemoans Book Quality

Reginald A writes :

I just read the ED Week July 12 Article \"Science Group Bemoans Quality of
Biology Textbooks\"
and was thinking that
the findings of the AAAS Project 2061 were spot on: that textbooks and the
general math and science curricula were \"a mile wide and an inch deep.\"


Clearly this is an area where a library could work in partnership with a
school system. Of course, policy drives this sort of thing...that\'s why the
curricula and the textbooks are in the shape they are. Still, those school
systems - or individual teachers - who are willing and able to draw on the
expertise of the library, could add some sorely-needed depth to a math and
science program.

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Technology Shrinks Library

School libraries are in a quandry these days as budgets have not been increased, yet they are expected to buy books and computers. The solution is not an easy one. Check out this article by the Shreeveport Times.

\"The push by school administrators to buy technology is leaving many of the nation’s school libraries with thin and outdated book inventories.\"

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Reading habit has declined in Sri Lanka

This Story tells us reading is declining in Sri Lanka due to lack of interest in reading and leisure. Is this happening in other countries?

\"The survey was conducted under the direction of Cultural and Religious Affairs Ministry. The report on the survey says that 63.7 per cent admitted that their reading habit has dropped. Most Sri Lankans are monolingual. Their principal language of communication is Sinhala, only 16.1 percent of them could read English and 0.9 percent Tamil. Of those who consider Tamil as their principle language of communication 35.4 percent could read Sinhala and 4.8 percent English.

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The Throwaway Libraries

Asia Week has this nice story on schools in the Philippines that get second and third hand books sent to them from America. The students love it, and so do I. Way to go!!

\"In DDU schools, all the students have to read are worn-out books and mimeographed materials, with hardly any pictures or color. The library is a single, dilapidated shelf in a poorly lit room, and the several dozen books in it are under lock and key.\"

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Library art books destroyed

MassLive has a sad, sad, Story on books being trashed and thrased at the Forbes Library.

\"According to library director Blaise Bisaillon, dozens of volumes of art, photography and music books have been vandalized over the last 10 months by an unknown assailant.

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Publishing House donated to University

Cabot writes
\"Canadian publishing company McClelland and
Stewart was donated by owner Avie Bennett to the
University of Toronto. Bennett is donating 75% of the
company\'s shares to the university. The remaining 25%
was sold to Random House.
href=\"http://www.infoculture.cbc.ca/archives/bookswr/bo
okswr_06262000_msshares.phtml\">Infoculture.cbc.ca
\"

\"
U of T President Robert Prichard says the publisher will
be completely independent and will have no
relationship with the University of Toronto Press. Any
income received from ownership of the shares will be
used to fund an endowment in support of Canadian
writing and culture.\"

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Canadian Heritage Committee Issues Report on Book

Cabot writes \"The Heritage Committee of the Canadian House of Commons has issued its report on the book industry. Of note is the chapter on libraries, preservation and access. Among the recommendations are:

- the Department of Canadian Heritage develop and fund a set of comprehensive tools for measuring the activities of libraries in the form of valid and up-to-date statistics relating to library funding, library spending and library usage by Canadians, including print-disabled Canadians.


- Government of Canada, in conjunction with the provinces and in discussion with the
library community, Canada\'s publishers, wholesalers and booksellers, offer incentives for Canadian libraries to purchase more of their books from Canadian suppliers.


- Government of Canada provide additional funding to the National Library of Canada, beginning in the fiscal year 2000-2001, so that its AMICUS services (the union catalogue) may be provided at no cost to its users.


The Report can be found on-line at:

parl.gc.ca \"

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Books Unbound, Life Unraveled

John Updike has written a fantastic op-ed piece for the New York Times about the sanctity of books what he would miss if they cease to exist.

\"...already much of the written communication that used to be handled by letters, newspapers and magazines has shifted to computer screens and to the vast digital library available over the Internet. If the worst comes true, and the paper book joins the papyrus scroll and parchment codex in extinction, we will miss, I predict, a number of things about it.\"

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Anal Retentive? Or Just a Love of Books

When I first started serious reading, I would always wash my hands before I would pick up my current book. I would also flex out the pages so as not to create a crease in the spine, and dog-eared pages....don\'t get me started. After reading this article from the Chicago Tribune, I felt at ease in knowing that I was not the only one.


\"I am the sort who reads a paperback at about 120 degrees open, rather than a flat-out 180. I wash my hands before I pick up any book other than a mass market paperback that I am merely toying with. And, as I am sure my grade-school librarians, Mrs. DeMers and Mrs. Hjelmseth, would be delighted to learn, I have never forgotten to carefully break in a new book.\"

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world\'s tiniest book

Mass Live has a cool littel Story on the world\'d tiniest book. Finally a book that a librarian can use to keep track of the tiny salary he/she makes!


It measures 1/2-inch by 5/16-inch, and is most likely the smallest hand-bound book in the world. Don\'t keep it in Ready Reference.

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Holy MP3

You can now download an MP3 version of The Bible online. You can get it at Audiotreasure.com.

Wired has an Interview with the guy who did it.

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Limits on books in prison upheld

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinal published this article about the amount of books that inmates in segregation are allowed to have with them at one time. The inmates said that the rule (which said that they can only have three) violated their first amendment rights. They won the case, but the appeals court disagreed, and it was over-ruled.


\"The center\'s inmates, who are segregated for violating prison disciplinary rules, can only have three state-issued paperback books in addition to their own religious book, such as a Bible or Qur\'an.\"

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Barney has Been a Bad Dinosaur

Librarians and Parents beware. As this article from the New York Post states, Barney the Dinosaur books have been found in New York which contain hidden pornography.


\"The discoveries in Putnam County and on Staten Island are similar to that of a Long Island tot who found a picture of a topless woman and steamy massage instructions in French underneath an electronic music box glued to the book.\"

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Books on Tape - Mind Candy or Enrichment?

The Los Angeles Times has this interesting article on books on tape. Its critics say that they are \"mind-candy\" which does not assist in making better readers.


\"That\'s the feeling of Willy Ackerman, an English teacher at Kennedy High School in Granada Hills. Although she may read a few passages of a book out loud to her students, Ackerman said the best way to master reading is to read. \"Difficult reading helps us to become better readers,\" she said. \"Easy reading helps us to become faster readers. That\'s how you improve.\"


The article also discusses audio books in schools.

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Small Booksellers Seek Browsers Online

The New York Times carried this article on independant booksellers\' quests to compete in the online world.


\"Nearly half the independent booksellers have disappeared since 1994, according to the American Booksellers Association. Now the Internet, the site of so much recent loss for the independents, will take on greater importance as a battleground in the next two months.\"

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Spurned by wife, man gives up pulp fiction library

The Times of India has this article about a man who had to choose between his laundry and his 25,000 Pulp Fiction book collection.


\"My wife gave me an ultimatum,\" he recalls. \"She said, \'I can\'t get to the washer and dryer. You have to make a decision between the books and clean clothes.\" The books are now at the University at Buffalo\'s Lockwood Library. Five years after Kelley donated them to his alma mater, librarians have catalogued each volume.\"

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