Harvard Libraries Provost calls for improved libraries...

Mar 4, 2009 by

Harvard University Provost Steven E. Hyman created a committee charged with improving the efficiency of the university’s library system. Since Harvard’s creation in 1638, no less than 75 different units have been instituted and have evolved “organically”. Some branches are autonomous, other services are centralized. The desired outcome would be “recommendations to improve the strength and efficiency of the University’s library system.” Economic reasons are cited. Because of the size of the system and its importance as a research library, this should be a very interesting process for anyone who works in an academic/research library system. No doubt a multi-year...

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Twitter and presentations

Feb 25, 2009 by

Very interesting post about the use of Twitter during presentations, by both attendees and presenter, over at Pistachio. Which brings a host of issues and interrogations: is it rude to look at a laptop instead of the presenter? why are the attendees twittering? Are they interested or bored? (enerving for the presenter) Should the presenter or moderator be on the lookout for the back-channel during the presentation? What would be the effects of that? And how to set it up? Is the back and forth enhancing or hindering the live presentation content? Conferences usually have a hash tag set up in advance, but should each session have one as well? Should the presenter determine it at the beginning? A few months ago, I gave a seminar using synchronous electronic classroom software (Elluminate). While I...

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List of libraries on Twitter

Feb 20, 2009 by

Found via – where else – Twitter, a list of libraries that tweet (thanks @CanuckLibrarian for the heads up and Lindy Brown for the actual...

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Library cats

Feb 11, 2009 by

I’ve just finished Dewey : a small-town library cat who touched the world, loaned to me by my student assistant. It’s a quick, easy read. It made me wondered though about cats in academic libraries. So I started looking and found this map listing library cats around the world. It’s produced by Gary Roma, who once filmed a documentary on the very subject entitled Puss in Books. Turns out most felines are in public libraries, but there are/were a few in colleges and universities. As for my present library, it would not be a good environment for a cat, although it is small library – most likely too small. I wouldn’t be too sure about the future either. Maybe an aquarium in a quiet study area would fly better. Where is the map for...

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Top 10 news in academics libraries by LJ...

Jan 7, 2009 by

The Library Journal just published a story on 2008’s top 10 news in academic libraries, in two parts. In Part 2 are the Honorable Mentions: Honorable Mentions: The LJAN Top Ten Stories of 2008, 4-10 . And the top three are: #1 Georgia State University Sued by Publishers over E-Reserves #2 Harvard’s OA Mandate #3 The Google Book Search...

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Mechanics’ Institute Library...

Jan 5, 2009 by

LISNews published a post today about a 2004 story on the membership libraries. The main library featured intrigued me as I didn’t know of it before. The Mechanics’ Institute Library and Chess Room was founded in 1854 in San Francisco and is the oldest library on the West Coast and one of the oldest chess clubs in the US. Its’ purpose was to promote adult education, technical learning and industry with collections appropriate to that purpose. The building and collections were lost in the 1906 fire but a new building reopened some four months after. Since then though, the collections focus has been greatly broadened to include the arts, business, literature and social sciences. But I bet the special collections still have great technical and scientific books. Borrowing is reserved to members but tours are...

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