Library News

The Universal Library: Not As Close As You Think

This recent New Yorker article gives a lovely overview of the progress we’ve made, as humans, in digitizing our intellectual output. You may notice that the article’s author, Anthony Grafton, is a clear library supporter, as all good and right-thinking people are. However, even if libraries aren’t your cup of tea, Mr. Grafton makes clear the sheer scale of effort that truly “putting it all up on the Web” entails. As any of our researchers in pre-1900 areas know (Poole’s Index, anyone?) the bulk of our intellectual heritage is not digitized. Who’s going to digitize it? And who’s going to organize the resulting mass of stuff so it’s usable?

Impact factors: how meaningful?

Karen Merguerian: Our engineering librarian, Joan Omoruyi, has recently called our attention to an article published in Journal of Cell Biology, which calls into question the methodology used in determining journal impact factors.  The article is here: The NU Libraries recently acquired access to Journal Citation Reports, which includes journal impact factors. 

iPod Addiction

Yesterday morning while getting off the commuter rail on the way to work, I did my usual routine of taking out my iPod and starting a favorite song.  However, when I took it out and pressed play– nothing happened.  I realized my battery was dead… and freaked out.  Easy fix though, right?  Just bring it home after work and charge it.  But, that would involve being without it for an entire day.  An entire back-from-a-week-and-a-half-off day.  I knew then what I never wanted to admit– I am addicted to my iPod. It never used to be this way.  I was probably the only one on the planet without an iPod, certainly the only one out of my friends.  I thought, “I’ll never get one.  I’ll never cave to society’s popular gadgets.”  But, when my other cheap-o mp3 player bit the dust, I decided it was time for a change.  Something a little more innovative, a little more durable– a little more like an iPod.  So I went for it and let me tell you: it was the best $150 I’ve ever spent.  Not only did I get an iPod, but I got the brand new 3rd generation nano.  Gasp. I listen to it on the way to work.  I listen to it at my desk.  Occasionally you can see me listening to it walking around the stacks while searching for media booking items.  Of course I listen to it on the way home from work and let’s not forget before I fall asleep at night.  I even got it a little protective case so it doesn’t get scratched.  I may even name it someday, but I don’t know if I want to go there, yet.  I am in love with this thing. Well, rest assure, the first thing I did yesterday when I got home was charge it so that it would be ready for today.  As a closing note,  I thought I would share with you all what I am currently listening to:  Gretchen Wilson- her album, Here for the Party (and I promise- this is the only country music on my iPod!) ~Tricia 🙂

Back at Snell

After a week in (not so) sunny California with my family, I’m back here in snowy Boston and in Snell Library. The break was good. It was nice to be able to walk outside without a coat on. It’s good to be back here though too. Next week the semester will start and things will get crazy but for now it’s still quiet. (I’m currently typing this at the Circulation Desk because there are no patrons to help.) Soon we’ll all be running around like headless chickens but for now I can enjoy the peace and quiet.

ALA Celebrity READ Posters

If you’ve ever ventured into a public library, you’ve probably noticed celebrity READ posters. I’m always intrigued by the stars chosen, and their favorite books. Some seem obvious, such as Orlando Bloom with The Lord of the Rings. Some seem more surprising, like Shaquille O’Neal with Undying Glory.

How do you think the poster subjects are chosen? Do you have a favorite literate celeb you’d love to seem emblazoned on your library’s wall?