LISNews Features

Library of Congress: Future of Library Catalogs

Jay writes "Managing Information recently pointed out that the Library of Congress has published a report titled 'The Changing Nature of the Catalog and Its Integration with Other Discovery Tools' that 'challenges assumptions about the traditional library catalog and proposes new directions for the research library catalog in the digital era.'. Excerpt: 'Commissioned by the Library and prepared by Associate University Librarian Karen Calhoun of Cornell University, the report assesses the impact of Internet on the traditional online public access catalog and concludes that library patrons want easy-to-use catalogs that are accessible on the Web.'

Read the full report at
The Changing Nature of the Catalog and Its Integration with Other Discovery Tools."

Fibs in New York Times

alf7e writes: "Volunteer elementary school librarian Gregory K. Pincus is in the New York Times today (April 14, 2006) for creating, encouraging, and disseminating the "fib" poetic form, which is based on the Fibonacci mathematical progression. Pincus spread the meme via his blog."
Post a fib in comments to celebrate!

Future? Learning as sensory experience

iblee muses: Is this the future of libraries?

Since most people have fond memories of their times growing up in libraries, most libraries have the luxury of time to reinvent themselves.
Here are 10 key trends affecting development of the next-generation library.

The article is excerpted from futurist Thomas Frey's essay The Future of Libraries: Beginning the Great Transformation.

AFSCME Commemorates National Library Workers Day

kathleen de la pena mccook writes "AFSCME celebrates National Library Workers Day

WASHINGTON. With libraries facing daunting budgetary challenges, President Gerald W. McEntee of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) commemorated National Library Workers Day today by thanking the librarians, library workers, technicians and support staff who have dedicated their lives to the goal of keeping America reading.

ALA-APA site for National Library Workers Day.

Transgendered Veteran's Suit Against Library of Congress Can Proceed

Babylon Sister wants us to know that, as reported by the ACLU, a federal court has ruled that a transgendered person and Army Special Forces veteran who was denied a position at the LOC can pursue legal action against the Library. Highlights:

Finding that sex may not be "a cut-and-dried matter of chromosomes," the court ruled that federal protections against sex discrimination may also protect transgender people who are discriminated against based on their gender identity. In rejecting the government's argument that discrimination against transgender people is not sex discrimination, the court noted "the factual complexities that underlie human sexual identity. These complexities stem from real variations in how the different components of biological sexuality - chromosomal, gonadal, hormonal, and neurological - interact with each other, and in turn, with social, psychological, and legal conceptions of gender." [...] The ACLU filed the lawsuit against the Library of Congress on June 2, 2005. After retiring from the military, Schroer, who had been hand-picked to head up a classified national security operation while serving as an Airborne Ranger qualified Special Forces officer, applied for a position with the Library of Congress as the senior terrorism research analyst. Soon thereafter she was offered the job, which she accepted immediately. Prior to starting work, Schroer took her future boss to lunch to explain that she was in the process of transitioning and thought it would be easier for everyone if she simply started work presenting as female. The following day, Schroer received a call from her future boss rescinding the offer, telling her that she wasn't a "good fit" for the Library of Congress.

Poetcasts & Read-a-thons for Poetry Month

Kathleen writes "April is National Poetry Month

The Poetcast produced by the Academy of American Poets for National Poetry Month will regularly showcase selections from the Poetry Audio Archive, as well as new work by contemporary poets.

April 2006, the Academy of American Poets will launch the first-ever Poetry Read-a-Thon. Geared for middle school students (grades 5-8), the Read-a-Thon's goals are to celebrate the reading of poems and writing about poems. In addition to emphasizing the pleasure and fun of reading poetry, the Read-a-Thon will facilitate the students' development of writing and comprehension skills."

Library Worker Who Criticized Admin Wins Grievance

kmccook writes "The Providence Journal, Friday, March 31, 2006, reports:

The Providence Public Library has repaid a library worker who was suspended for criticizing his bosses.

Michael Vallone, 54, a clerk in the technical services department, was suspended for three days without pay in January after he posted a critical letter on an internal Web site. Vallone's paragraph-long missive ended with, "PPL administrators: The light is shining on you and it looks ugly."

Library officials called the letter aggressive and threatening.

The United Service and Allied Workers Union, which represents library workers, filed a grievance with the National Labor Relations board on behalf of Vallone and a librarian who had been suspended in another incident.

Earlier this month, the union agreed to drop the complaint involving the librarian and the library settled with Vallone. He was repaid for the three-day suspension and the incident was removed from his personnel file."

FBI does not have email because it is a threat

mdoneil writes "Robert Muller head of the FBI said all agents to not have external email addresses because it may be a security threat.

"E-mails can also be the source of viruses," said Mueller. "They can be a source of worms. They can be used to launch denial of service attacks. And consequently, in our secure environment we have to use e-mail in a closed system, but also have access to e-mail outside. And we do have that."

The Tampa SAIC said everyone has email accounts in his office. For more read the BayNews9 story here.
Ya know, sometimes I just want to gouge my eyes out when I read such stupidity. If the FBI can't secure its network then why do I even bother. Who lets these clowns speak in public, we would be better off with Ice-T opening the new FBI office."

What's New @ Your LISNews

The newest version of Slashcode just got dropped into place this weekend by our Hosts and there's a few new features that you might want to play with.

The first is tagging. If you're not familiar with tagging already, you might find it an interesting idea. Tags have been around for a while as a system for users to categorize (aka catalog) web pages. It's hard to compare tagging to "real" cataloging, since tags are by nature uncontrolled, but you could think of tagging as a very chaotic form of cataloging. You are encouraged to use this feature to submit a handful of tags: brief labels that you think best describe any article. You might choose to say that this is an article about 'books' and 'google'

The Slashcode guys describe this as "all very beta", which means it's in the early stages of development, it may be buggy, and it might change substantially in the future. It also means it's short on a lot of really neat features it *could* be doing.

The core developers say they don't know exactly how this will all work, and a lot of it really
depends on how many people participate. If you choose to add your own tags, be aware:

  • Your tags are public. Everyone will be able to see them!
  • Keep your tags brief.
  • Tags are space-separated. Use "publiclibrary", not "public library".
  • We provide a few example tags for you. Use them if you like.
  • Don't forget to click 'Tag' to save your tags.
  • Tags must be all-lowercase, no punctuation. Numbers can
    appear but can't be first. Smoosh them up: for "Web 2.0", tag
    "web20". Max 64 chars.
  • Don't use plurals. It's "library", not "libraries".

It's still brand new, so any ideas you have on how it can be better used, please feel free to let me know.
You might also notice an odd title appearing from time to time on the index page. That's another new feature that allows sectional content to come out from hiding and show itself on the home page. CmdrTaco Explains All over on Slashdot. Essentially anything posted into the sections will peak out on the homepage now. It allows us to fit more good stuff into the same space. I'll be adding a few more new plugins soon that will add some new features that should be fun to use.

One Coach = 3 Reference Librarians

kmccook writes "From the the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR). The head football coach's salary would cover the salaries at doctoral institutions of...

three counseling psychologists or

four academic advisers or

three reference librarians or

four accountants or

three help desk managers .

The 2005-06 Administrative Compensation Survey report provides an overview of median salaries from all reporting institutions by affiliation, budget size and enrollment. Comparative tables break down data by budget quartiles and institutional classification. Other tables provide data by institutional classification for males/females, minority/nonminority, years of service and inside/outside hires. Get Surveys here."


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