Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Category Archives: Libraries

Is the Library Card Dying?

The Atlantic – Sara Polsky: “..Serious library-card collectors approach the pursuit more systematically than I do. A high-school freshman in California, for example, maintains a collection of more than 3,000 cards. A librarian in Nebraska scans valid library cards from all over the world and posts the images online. The retired librarian Larry Nix maintains a web page of older library cards, or “library tickets,” dating back to 1846, which demonstrate more variety in size, color, and wording than the library cards of today. Library cards have always had the same purpose—to keep track of borrowers’ loans—but originally they were invented for a different type of library. The first cards, Nix told me, were probably issued at membership libraries, 18th-century organizations where members contributed fees (and sometimes books from their own collections) in exchange for the right to check out materials. The Library Company of Philadelphia, which Benjamin Franklin co-founded in 1731, was the first membership library in the U.S., though many existed before that in England. Because they were formed by people with common interests, these libraries often coalesced around themes. Once members were allowed to walk off the premises with books, library cards—also known as tickets—made it more likely that those books would come back…

In the pre-computer era, library cards were just one part of a complex system that kept track of book loans and returns. Depending on the size of the library, cards were paired with ledgers, slips, second cards, or indicators (a primarily British system using color-coded blocks in holes to represent books) that remained in the building. Librarians used these systems to record checkouts by date, title, or borrower; in professional journals, they noted minute evolutions in the system, such as the switch from recording loans by checkout date to recording them by due date..”

MOU on information-sharing relationship between LC and Peace Palace Library in The Hague

“July 19, 2018 – Two of the world’s most comprehensive international law libraries, the Law Library of Congress and the Peace Palace Library based in The Hague, Netherlands, have agreed to form an information-sharing relationship to exchange information and better serve library users. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed today in a ceremony at… Continue Reading

Bloomberg – Jeff Bezos is now the Richest Man in Modern History

Bloomberg News – “Jeff Bezos is the richest person in modern history. The Amazon.com Inc. founder’s net worth cracked $150 billion in New York on Monday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. That’s about $55 billion more than Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates, the world’s second-richest person. Bezos, 54, also has topped Gates in inflation-adjusted… Continue Reading

NYT – Amazon’s Curious Case of the $2,630.52 Used Paperback

“Many booksellers on Amazon strive to sell their wares as cheaply as possible. That, after all, is usually how you make a sale in a competitive marketplace. Other merchants favor a counterintuitive approach: Mark the price up to the moon. “Zowie,” the romance author Deborah Macgillivray wrote on Twitter last month after she discovered copies… Continue Reading

NIH NNLM Gov Doc/Database: Data Thesaurus

“Data Thesaurus: All – Welcome to the Data Thesaurus, a resource connecting and defining concepts, services, and tools relevant to librarians working in data-driven discovery. A definition, relevant literature, and web resources accompany each term along with links to related terms. Search by term or keyword on the right or browse the 70 terms below.” Continue Reading

The Open Library – Search Full-Text within 4M+ Books

The Open Library Blog: “Open Library now lets you search inside the text contents of over 4M books. Many book websites, like Amazon and Goodreads, give you the ability to search for books by title and author, but they don’t make it easy to find books based on their contents. This type of searching is… Continue Reading

Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

A lecture explaining why using our imaginations, and providing for others to use theirs, is an obligation for all citizens…”The simplest way to make sure that we raise literate children is to teach them to read, and to show them that reading is a pleasurable activity. And that means, at its simplest, finding books that… Continue Reading

Survey – Law Librarians Focusing More on Competitive Intelligence

Law.com: The focus is shifting toward more business intelligence research for partners and away from client-facing work, the survey results indicated. “This year’s survey results show that for firm librarians the focus is switching from practice of law research to business development research—sometimes referred to as competitive intelligence. Specifically, 75 percent of respondents expect to… Continue Reading

The Odd Paraphernalia of the NYPL’s Berg Collection

BookRiot: “On the third floor of the New York Public Library, off of a quiet, marble-tiled hallway, is the Berg Reading Room. Mary Catherine Kinniburgh is one of the literary-manuscript specialists in charge of the cache of artifacts, which includes a lock of Walt Whitman’s hair, Jack Kerouac’s boots and Virginia Woolf’s walking cane—all guarded… Continue Reading

llustrated Maps of New York Through the Ages

llustrated Maps of New York Through the Ages By The Paris Review “Since their inception, maps have been embellished with illustrations. Through July 16, a selection of illustrated maps of New York spanning six centuries is on view at the New York Public Library. A preview of the exhibition—along with captions written by its curator… Continue Reading

New Book Chapter by Dempsey, Malpas Considers the Future of the Academic Library 26 June 2018

OCLC: “Lorcan Dempsey, Vice President of the Membership and Research Division and Chief Strategist, and Constance Malpas, Strategic Intelligence Manager and Research Scientist, have authored a chapter in the book Higher Education in the Era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution just released by Springer, and available for open access download. In the chapter “Academic Library… Continue Reading

Methodology for measuring media bias using a defined taxonomy

Vanessa’s blog, All Generalizations are False – Home of the Media Bias Chart: Part 2 of 4: Why Measuring Political Bias is So Hard, and How We Can Do It Anyway: The Media Bias Chart Horizontal Axis “How to Define Political Bias in a Meaningful, Useful Way – In part one of this series I… Continue Reading