August 27, 2016

Feedback: Letters to LJ, August 2016 Issue

A call for academic RA research, the unchanging lack of inclusion, and more letters to editor from the August 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Making Libraries Visible on the Web | The Digital Shift

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In Library: An Unquiet History, historian and curatorial fellow for Harvard’s metaLAB Matthew Battles describes Melvil Dewey’s impatience with inefficiency in library work in the 1870s. “To Dewey, local interests and special needs were less important than the efficient movement of books into the hands of readers,” he writes. That crisp statement of purpose should be an inspiration to the current discussions around making library collections and programs visible and available on the web.

MA Center for the Book Complete Funding Loss Reversed

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The Massachusetts Center for the Book was re-funded on July 30 thanks to emergency sessions of the state House and Senate, after Governor Charlie Baker had completely defunded the Center and slashed budgets for several other educational and cultural organizations. Funding to the Massachusetts Cultural Center was also restored, as was the Local Aid to Public Libraries line item.

High Tech Shelf Help: Singapore’s Library Robot

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Library holdings are only useful if they’re findable. For print collections at least, even recommending the most relevant titles ultimately falls short if they’re not on the right shelf. However, the process of finding out if things have been properly shelved is time-consuming and never ending, as materials are continuously moved even if they don’t circulate outside the building. The task is often handled by support staff, interns, or volunteers, but Singapore’s National Library Board has a new alternative: a library robot, developed by researchers at the infocomm research branch of Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research.

I’m Indie You: Proven Ways to Engage Your Local Writing Community

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Thursday, August 18th, 2016, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET / 11:00 A – 12:00 PM PT
The indie writing community has exploded with the maturity of digital publishing tools and resources. In fact, indie and self-published ebooks now account for over 80% of the Amazon best-sellers list. Are you engaged with your local writing community?
Register Now!

Making the Advocacy Decision

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Library trustees—whether elected or appointed—have the fiduciary responsibility to ensure that the library has the resources to provide the programs and services the community wants.

Feedback: Letters to LJ, July 2016 Issue

Boosting Orlando, art large and small, an elephant in the (library) room, and more letters to editor from the July, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Pure Escapism | Programs That Pop

IT’S A LOCK (Clockwise from top l.): Kids create the puzzles for the library escape room; Morton-James PL director Rasmus Thoegersen made up as a zombie; and all the zombies get ready for their moment

What do you do with an old storage room? With the help of a grant, around 40 kids, four months, and a lot of hard work and creativity, the Morton-James Public Library was able to transform a nondescript storage area into a real-life immersive puzzle game—­Nebraska City’s first escape room (and the first escape room in the world built by kids, as far as we can tell).

Library People News: Hires, Promotions, Retirements, and Obituaries

Michael Doylen named Interim Associate Vice Provost and Director of Libraries at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; Andrea Ingmire appointed director of Peter White Public Library, Marquette, MI; Nandita S. Mani to become Director of Health Sciences Library and Associate University Librarian for the Health Sciences at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; and more new hires, promotions, retirements, and obituaries from the July 1, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Protecting Patron Privacy

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Recently, I was teaching a privacy class for librarians, and the topic turned to the privacy versus convenience trade-off—the occasional annoyances of using privacy-enhancing technologies online. An audience member laid out what she felt I was asking of the group. “You’re telling us to start selling granola when everyone else is running a candy store.”