Ramblings, citations and "brainwaves" of a college librarian in Toronto. 475 square feet refers to the size of my home, not the size of my office or library.

Novels WRITTEN on Cellphones!

Wednesday September 26th's Wall Street Journal had a front page story on writters in Japan cranking out novels on cellphones. Mobile novels first appeared 7 years ago in Japan...with Maho i-Land, which today has 1 million novels hosted. Popular novels are making it into print. Stories are mostly a "string of conversation and emotion, and there is almost no setting, scene, or character development". Humm, sounds like Seinfeld.



A surprisingly good latin language encyclopedia. I wish I had this back in high school in the 1980's!

First Novel Created to Only Be Sold as an Audio Download

Cite This Item in Worldcat.org

Item records in WorldCat.org, WorldCat’s open-Web interface, now include a Cite this Item link that provides bibliographic citations in five common styles: APA, Chicago, Harvard, MLA and Turabian.

Displayed in a separate pop-up window, the citations follow the reference standard for each style. The citations window cautions users that “formatting rules within a style can vary widely between applications and fields of interest or study,” and that they should apply the specific requirements of a reviewing body.

LibGuides is a library 2.0 online publishing system. It combines the best features of social networks, wikis, bookmarks and blogs, to help librarians share information and promote library resources to the community. LibGuides is fully integrated with Facebook, and LibGuides widgets enable the distribution of library content on social networks, blogs, and courseware systems. Patrons can also subscribe to the email updates of their favorite LibGuides content. Simply put, LibGuides connects you with patrons, wherever they are.


University of Waterloo Libraries have Meebo widgets in their subject guides...cool!

"NASA and Internet Archive of San Francisco are partnering to scan, archive and manage the agency's vast collection of photographs, historic film and video. The imagery will be available through the Internet and free to the public, historians, scholars, students and researchers.

Currently, NASA has more than 20 major imagery collections online. With this partnership, those collections will be made available through a single, searchable "one-stop-shop" archive of NASA imagery."


The New York Times will stop charging for access to its Web site, reflecting a growing view in the industry that fees cannot outweigh the potential ad revenue from increased traffic on a free site.


More here.

More from Bernie Sloan:
Barbara Quint of Searcher has provided a couple of good overviews
of the recent moves by Elsevier and the NY Times to open up
access to content using an ad revenue model.


NY Times:

In discussing the NY Times move, Quint mentions rumors that the
Wall Street Journal might make the same move once Rupert Murdoch
takes over. And it looks like the WSJ would be taking a bigger
risk: the NY Times is foregoing $10 million in annual TimesSelect
subscriptions, where the WSJ online subscription service is
pulling in an estimated $50 million annually.

Bernie Sloan

NFB Collection in Peril

Many of the 13,000 films archived at Canada's National Film Board are at risk of deterioration because the arts institution lacks the technology to digitize it, according to an internal audit.

Easy way to keep some rights.


...“Teens are tire kickers — they hang around, cost you money and then leave,” said Paul Kedrosky, a venture capitalist and author of the blog “Infectious Greed.” Where Friendster was once the hot spot, Facebook and MySpace now draw the crowds of young people online.

“The older demographic has a bunch of interesting characteristics,” Mr. Kedrosky added, “not the least of which is that they hang around.”

New York Times

Posting Questionable Old Books Online

Seems folks are digitizing books humanity and authorities would hope would go away.

Read here.

PDF Hell?

1. PDF wrapped TIFFs - images that are unsearchable and mostly unfndable but look for all intents and appearances like text. A true access chimera.

2. GovDocs exploded into chapters of individual PDF's. Arrghhh! Let's make the user try to assemble - in order - that 24 chapter report plus its cover, appendices and indexes into something compehensible. Oh yeah, extra points if it's in several languages. Of course, a Google free text search won't assemble all the pertinent pieces easily either

3. Worse, let's create a 10,000 page PDF and try to ask any citizen to download and print that!

10. Make custom PDF notepaper

9. Convert files to PDF online

8. Annotate PDF's with Skim

7. Password protect PDF's

6. Merge PDF files

5. Edit PDF's with PDF Tools

4. Speed up your PDF reader

3. Manage your PDF library in iTunes

2. Convert that whiteboard to PDF

1. Save any document as a PDF

Open Source in Libraries

A lame summary, be useful for me.

Forcing students to buy textbooks is silly. Roll it into tuition. He's a great analogy.

"Entering college students and their parents have been warned: textbooks are outrageously expensive. Yet there is a way to lighten the load for students in their budgets. The system could be much improved if, first of all, colleges and publishers would acknowledge that textbooks are more akin to computer software than to trade books. A textbook’s value, like that of a software program, is not in its physical form, but rather in its intellectual content. Therefore, just as software companies typically “site license” to colleges, so should textbook publishers."

Kept Up Academic Librarian

Technology and Learning

Susan McCahan, of 3m teachinng Award and UofT fame, says:

"There is no shortcut to learning. Photos aren't a substitute for taking notes. Photos don't force you to digest the material the way you do when you have to summarize it on the spot.

First-year students actually need to take better notes, not avoid them by taking pictures.

Studies show first-year students take down only about 11 per cent of the information they should – yet we also know good note-taking can improve marks by up to 40 per cent,"

Toronto Star

At the Reference desk, I see confused looks when I show some how to do something as opposed to giving it to them. It is an attitude problem. Technology without a learning literacy foundation, is useless.

We don't come to class, because we can download the notes. We don't get the text because the professor summarizes it for us. Education is about the journey not the destination. Sadly that is lost on youth today. Hopefully, enough profs will resist the pressure to "give-them-what-they-want" to meet accountability or retention expectations. Eductaion is an experience service. You don't get to dictate how rides work in a theme park, ditto for education. The ride is what it was designed to be.

One in Four Read No Books Last Year

According to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll.

Okay, lets cut the book budget by 25% to adjust?

Maybe we should survey our communities every few years to see what they are consuming and adjust our collections accordingly? I have always been stuck by how our collection development focuses on existing users not potential users...


"This site lists the pages in Wikipedia which are receiving the most edits per unique editor over various periods of time. Popular people in the news, the latest fads, and the hottest video games can be quickly identified by monitoring this social phenomenon. (Last Hour; Last 6 Hours; Last Day; Last 3 Days; Last Week; Last Month)"

Dabble.com Video aggregator

Dabble.com aggregates video clips from major video services such as YouTube, blip.tv, and Revver, along with smaller sites and video podcasters. The site lets you search all the video services at once and organize your favorite clips from them into custom playlists that you can share with the Dabble community.

Rent Mash-up

Rentometer is there to let you know just how much your rent compares with the rest of the neighborhood. Just enter in your address-no personal information is saved, so no worries there-and how much you pay, and the site will let you know if you're paying more, less, or the average for your area, with a handy Google Map of logged rents, so you know just what doors to go knocking on to try to score that rent-controlled place of your dreams.

Some folks have too much time on their hands!

Wikipedia watch out!


Naturally, librarians are outraged.

Innovation Killers

Seems increasing productivity and technology are a paradox says this study.

Google Earth - Sky

Google Books and Google Earth

Book Layer in Google Earth.

Check out this ditty.


Bob Young is my Hero!

Romancing the "Book"

Carol Hoenig says there are many reasons why people don't read as they once did

Work Outside Your Job Description

Personal Balanced Scorecard

By Dr. Lauchlan A. K. Mackinnon on personal growth...


Want to search by neighbourhood?

Ziplocal.com adds to a growing list of geotagged search results, powered by map displays. Bring 'em on!

Zagat on Your Cell Phone


Users can browse by neighbourhood, type, , new openings, top lists and features.

Can't wait for location-aware cell-phones to get adopted here...

PowerPoint Hosting Tools

Ning is getting lots of hype of late.

Check out this Library 2.0 example.

P.S. I hope this goes away soon.

Renting Textbooks

Bismarck State College students have the opportunity to rent their textbooks instead of buying them. I hope this takes off.

You can get the report here.

Starting today, Google Maps users can add a map to their website or blog just by copying & pasting a snippet of HTML. This new functionality enables Google Maps users to share and disseminate geographic information in the same way that YouTube users share videos. Bloggers and webmasters no longer need an API key or knowledge of Java Script to put a Google Map on their website or blog.

To embed a Google Map, users simply pull up the map they want to embed - it can be a location, a business, driving directions, or a My Map they have created - and then click "Link to this page" and copy & paste the HTML into their website or blog. The embedded map is fully interactive, like the Google Maps API, but creating one does not require any programming skills. Users can drag and click or zoom in on a location, and view it in map, satellite, and hybrid modes.

5 Ways to Share Files

"But librarians clearly have their pet peeve: the online content providers, particularly the big two, Reed Elsevier Plc's LexisNexis and Thomson Corp.'s Westlaw. There was a time when electronic services were supposed to replace books and lower costs. They've done neither. Instead, fees continue to rise each year -- well beyond the rate of inflation, say librarians (licensing fees are typically covered by confidentiality agreements)."


Find Out Who is Editing Wikipedia

Wired had a nice ditty of Wikiscanner. Just as we thought, Wikipedia is corrupt.


ticTOCs is a project to develop a freely available service which will
transform journal current awareness. The ticTOCs service will make it easy
for academics, researchers and anyone else to find, display, store, combine
and reuse journal tables of contents (TOCs) from multiple publishers in a
personalisable web based environment.

Get it here.

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