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Category Archives: Libraries

Climate Change Could Erase Human History. These Archivists Are Trying to Save It

Motherboard – Climate change making the word hotter, more humid, and more stormy—all conditions that put sensitive paper archives at risk. This problem is forcing us to ask, which histories will we choose to remember?

“This problem prompted archivists Eira Tansey, Ben Goldman, and Whitney Ray to complete the Repository Data Project, a growing database that currently catalogs more than 25,000 archives in the United States, including major university libraries, small museums, corporate archives, and art facilities. The reason for making this database, Tansey told Motherboard, is to figure out which facilities are at risk of sea level rise and worsened storm surges over the next 100 years. If we know what’s at risk, theoretically, we can plan and prepare for the worst. Or alternatively, we can at least know which facilities need help when the next disaster strikes. The study brought up an uncomfortable question. What happens if we abandon culturally rich areas? What will happen to the archives in these areas, to the history stored in them? “As there will be inevitable migration and abandonment of certain areas, the only traces that will be left of some places is in the archives,” Tansey said. “And so, we have a large amount of responsibility for what it looks like to do our work in the context of climate change.” But of course, the Repository Data Project isn’t just about archivists taking cultural stock. The project, at its core, forces us to ask difficult questions. In a changing world, one where climate change will change the way coastlines look and likely the way governments function in upcoming decades, who and what will we choose to remember?…”

Why Can’t New York City Build More Gems Like This Queens Library?

The New York Times – Why Can’t New York City Build More Gems Like This Queens Library?  “…The Hunters Point Community Library is one of the finest public buildings New York has produced this century… Compact, at 22,000 square feet and 82 feet high, the library is among the finest and most uplifting public buildings… Continue Reading

How Filter Bubbles, Dark Patterns, and Algorithms Propagating Bias Impede the Spread of Knowledge

Medium – The Discovery Dark Ages: How Filter Bubbles, Dark Patterns, and Algorithms Propagating Bias Impede the Spread of Knowledge – “… Change can be a good thing. Now, that said, there are ways in which search engines are being used to deliver results nowadays, regardless of whether people want them or not, and even if… Continue Reading

How Legal Professionals Must Lead in the Age of Machines

Law Technology Today – “…Today, legal professionals, of course, spend much of their day interacting with computers. A desktop or laptop computer is the hearth of our workspace, where we do simple tasks like email, as well as complex tasks like using sophisticated systems to analyze data collections. We use our mobile phones, tablets, and ever-present… Continue Reading

Why Angry Librarians Are Going to War With Publishers Over E-Books

Slate – “If I wanted to borrow A Better Man by Louise Penny—the country’s current No. 1 fiction bestseller—from my local library in my preferred format, e-book, I’d be looking at about a 10-week waitlist. And soon, if the book’s publisher, a division of Macmillan, has its way, that already-lengthy wait time could get significantly… Continue Reading

How to display your books when space is tight

Washington Post – “Cruise Instagram or Pinterest, and you’ll find numerous examples of warm, cushy reading areas decked out with twinkling string lights and endless built-in shelves. How do you evoke the feeling of having your own library in a small space with a small budget? We surveyed some experts for advice…” [this article made… Continue Reading

The Crack Squad of Librarians Who Track Down Half-Forgotten Books

Atlas Obscura – Reuniting stumped readers with the books from the edges of their memories. “The carpet was khaki, the lights yellow, the walls a dishwater beige. The basement computer lab in Midtown Manhattan didn’t have much ambience. But 20 librarians from the New York Public Library were seated in the room—and they were there… Continue Reading

Why are Books That Shape? From Codices to Kindles, Why This Rectangle Stays Golden

BookRiot: “Anyone who has ever tried to organize their bookshelves can tell you that books are not a standard size. In fact, even books that fall under the same category (mass market paperbacks, trade paperbacks, hardcovers) can vary wildly. It makes a perfectly matched shelf very difficult. Despite all of those different sizes, though, almost… Continue Reading

How an AI archive platform is helping a Victorian library keep up with data

ZDNet – A proof of concept has been built to remove the need to manually archive catalogues — a process that has been used for over the last 20 years. “Victoria’s Stonnington Libraries together with Civica have developed an artificial intelligence-based proof-of-concept solution to remove the manual work involved with cataloguing and searching through library… Continue Reading

Libraries and Archivists Are Scanning and Uploading Books That Are Secretly in the Public Domain

Vice – Millions of books are secretly in the public domain thanks to a copyright loophole, a new project seeks to put them on the Internet Archive – “A coalition of archivists, activists, and libraries are working overtime to make it easier to identify the many books that are secretly in the public domain, digitize… Continue Reading