For those of you who thrilled to Matthew Battles’ book Library: An Unquiet History should try out his podcast — similarly titled but not library-specific — Unquiet History. I’m currently enjoying listening to a short history of medeival urban garbage. Fun!
John McCain mentioned in one presidential debate that Barack Obama wastefully earmarked $3 million for “an overhead projector” for Adler Planetarium. If you’re like me, you were probably thinking “What? Projectors don’t cost that much!” It’s true, the regular kind don’t, but an Adlerâ€™s Zeiss Mark VI projector does. I enjoyed reading the press release that the Adler put out in response.
I think this is important. It’s a case, one of hundreds, that the US Supreme Court declined to review. “There is no free exercise right to be free from any reference in public elementary schools to the existence of families in which the parents are of different gender combinations … public schools are not obliged to shield individual students from ideas which potentially are religiously offensive, particularly when the school imposes no requirement that the student agree with or affirm those ideas,” the court said. Some more details from a previous OIF post and the School Law blog.
Information you may want if you’re interested in the Google Books lawsuit. I’m still reading so haven’t yet analyzed but this seems like good news?
- Settlement Administration website.
- Google Book Search’s page on the settlement.
- Association of American Publishers’ page on the settlement.
- Author’s Guild page on the settlement.
- Joint FAQ about the settlement.
- Official Google Blog entry about the settlement.
- UMich University Librarian Paul Courant’s analysis.
The library section, down near the bottom of the second link, says this.
This agreement wouldn’t have been possible without all the libraries who have preserved these books and now partnered with us to make so many of them discoverable online. We’re delighted that this agreement creates new opportunities for libraries and universities to offer their patrons and students access to millions of books beyond their own collections. In addition to the institutional subscriptions and the free public access terminals, the agreement also creates opportunities for researchers to study the millions of volumes in the Book Search index. Academics will be able to apply through an institution to run computational queries through the index without actually reading individual books.
Again, here are a set of things that maybe don’t need their own post but are worth letting people know about.
- Literal videos? Have you seen these? They are remixed videos where instead of the lyrics, you see captions or hear lyrics that describe what is happening instead. Very amusing. The first one I saw was AHa’s “Take On Me” but now they’ve done the Tears for Fears “Head Over Heels” video which is one of the classic videos that takes place in a library. Enjoy. (and of course there’s this)
- Sarah Houghton-Jan and Laura Crossett presented The Broke Library’s Guide to a Better Web Presence at IL2008.
- Dan Chudnov has a great set of slides form a talk he gave at MLC about free software. Many slides, easy to understand.
- Some discussion about Library Journal’s decision to bring eyeballs to their advertisers in the form of hosting the Annoyed Librarian’s blog. Free Range Librarian, David Lee King, Walt Crawford. My feeling is that I wasn’t payign that much attention to LJ anyhow and will probably continue to do so, though I really do like a lot of the people that work there.
- LISJobs has a lovely redesign.
- GODORT — the govdocs people — has a custom search engine that searches 611 government document sites simultaneously.
I’ll be doing another post on blogs added to my feed reader lately. I had organized and culled and plumped up my feed reading list a few months back [down time on an airplane] and was all pleased but then the hurricane that was my HD crash set me back to the beginning. I’ve been reading some neat stuff that I’ll be sharing with you.