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BS: Only Librarians Will Care....

Rapparee 20 Jun 05 - 06:14 PM
GUEST,G-Spot 20 Jun 05 - 06:17 PM
Rapparee 20 Jun 05 - 06:33 PM
Richard Bridge 20 Jun 05 - 06:38 PM
Rapparee 20 Jun 05 - 06:58 PM
Le Scaramouche 20 Jun 05 - 07:06 PM
Leadfingers 20 Jun 05 - 07:18 PM
GUEST,G-Spot 20 Jun 05 - 07:27 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Jun 05 - 10:16 PM
dianavan 21 Jun 05 - 12:50 AM
Liz the Squeak 21 Jun 05 - 03:39 AM
Noreen 21 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM
Wilfried Schaum 21 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM
Tracey Dragonsfriend 21 Jun 05 - 09:07 AM
Rapparee 21 Jun 05 - 11:03 AM
GUEST,bbc at work 21 Jun 05 - 11:26 AM
JulieF 21 Jun 05 - 11:26 AM
mack/misophist 21 Jun 05 - 11:32 AM
Wilfried Schaum 22 Jun 05 - 03:39 AM
Rapparee 22 Jun 05 - 08:58 AM
ranger1 22 Jun 05 - 09:05 AM
Tracey Dragonsfriend 22 Jun 05 - 09:09 AM
Rapparee 22 Jun 05 - 09:29 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Jun 05 - 09:38 AM
Rapparee 22 Jun 05 - 11:33 AM
Kaleea 23 Jun 05 - 03:53 AM
Tracey Dragonsfriend 23 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM
Sandra in Sydney 23 Jun 05 - 09:10 AM
Rapparee 23 Jun 05 - 09:18 AM
John Hardly 23 Jun 05 - 10:19 AM
GUEST,Stilly River Sage 23 Jun 05 - 10:38 AM
GUEST,leeneia 23 Jun 05 - 11:23 AM
GUEST,leeneia 23 Jun 05 - 11:28 AM
Joe Offer 23 Jun 05 - 12:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Jun 05 - 01:51 PM
Sandra in Sydney 24 Jun 05 - 09:08 AM
Rapparee 24 Jun 05 - 09:29 AM
Stilly River Sage 25 Jun 05 - 12:42 AM
Liz the Squeak 25 Jun 05 - 04:02 AM
Greg F. 25 Jun 05 - 10:07 AM
Greg F. 25 Jun 05 - 10:24 AM
Sandra in Sydney 25 Jun 05 - 11:39 AM
gnu 25 Jun 05 - 12:20 PM
JohnInKansas 25 Jun 05 - 03:14 PM
Rapparee 25 Jun 05 - 06:04 PM
Greg F. 26 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM
Sandra in Sydney 26 Jun 05 - 09:05 AM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jun 05 - 09:38 AM
Sandra in Sydney 26 Jun 05 - 09:43 AM
Rapparee 26 Jun 05 - 05:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jun 05 - 10:16 PM
Rapparee 27 Jun 05 - 04:03 PM
JohnInKansas 28 Jun 05 - 05:56 AM
JohnInKansas 28 Jun 05 - 06:31 AM
Rapparee 28 Jun 05 - 04:39 PM
beardedbruce 28 Jun 05 - 05:09 PM
Rapparee 28 Jun 05 - 06:52 PM
JohnInKansas 29 Jun 05 - 03:33 AM
Liz the Squeak 29 Jun 05 - 03:48 AM
JohnInKansas 29 Jun 05 - 04:02 AM
Wilfried Schaum 29 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM
Rapparee 29 Jun 05 - 08:59 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Jun 05 - 09:34 AM
GUEST,sandra in sydney walking thru the backdoor 29 Jun 05 - 09:49 AM
Wilfried Schaum 30 Jun 05 - 03:59 AM
JohnInKansas 30 Jun 05 - 05:58 AM
Rapparee 30 Jun 05 - 08:50 AM
GUEST,Nancy King at work 01 Jul 05 - 11:42 AM
Donuel 01 Jul 05 - 03:15 PM
GUEST,ragdall 02 Jul 05 - 01:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jul 05 - 02:17 AM
Rapparee 02 Jul 05 - 09:28 AM
Greg F. 05 Jul 05 - 12:59 PM
Rapparee 05 Jul 05 - 06:37 PM
Wilfried Schaum 06 Jul 05 - 03:19 AM
The Fooles Troupe 16 Aug 05 - 07:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Aug 05 - 01:53 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 Oct 05 - 01:43 PM
JohnInKansas 30 Oct 05 - 06:00 PM
Rapparee 30 Oct 05 - 09:28 PM
JohnInKansas 06 Jan 06 - 12:00 AM
Bill D 06 Jan 06 - 10:49 AM
JohnInKansas 06 Jan 06 - 11:49 AM
Rapparee 06 Jan 06 - 12:27 PM
Bill D 06 Jan 06 - 01:53 PM
JohnInKansas 06 Jan 06 - 02:18 PM
Rapparee 06 Jan 06 - 04:50 PM
JohnInKansas 06 Jan 06 - 07:59 PM
Bill D 07 Jan 06 - 01:23 PM
Rapparee 07 Jan 06 - 10:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Dec 06 - 11:15 AM
Rapparee 13 Dec 06 - 11:20 AM
GUEST 13 Dec 06 - 12:56 PM
Ebbie 13 Dec 06 - 02:12 PM
Rapparee 13 Dec 06 - 03:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Dec 06 - 03:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 08 - 10:13 AM
MMario 12 Mar 08 - 10:19 AM
Rapparee 12 Mar 08 - 09:47 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 08 - 09:58 PM
Rapparee 13 Mar 08 - 11:19 AM
Wesley S 13 Mar 08 - 12:24 PM
Gulliver 13 Mar 08 - 09:50 PM
GUEST,Chicken Charlie 13 Mar 08 - 11:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Mar 08 - 11:55 PM
Rapparee 14 Mar 08 - 08:43 AM
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Rapparee 14 Mar 08 - 05:03 PM

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Subject: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 06:14 PM

According to what I'm seen on listservs today, including an announcement to SIRSI customers from Patrick Sommers, SIRSI and Dynix signed a merger agreement yesterday.

You librarians out there (and there are a couple) will know what this means. I sincerely doubt that anyone else will give a poop.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,G-Spot
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 06:17 PM

I probably will not give a poop, but you know you have perked curiosity, so what does it mean?

GS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 06:33 PM

The two largest library automation companies in the world have merged.

Probably means very little to non-librarians.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 06:38 PM

What for we need automatic libraries? Something wrong with human staff?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 06:58 PM

You've got to pay them and give them benefits.

Oh, for the old days, when a library Director could make the staff work 12 hour days! Fire them on a whim! Make them grovel and plead for their pitiful pay! Require them to fire the (coal) furnace, and watch them sweat in summer and fire them if they got sick or pregnant! I've said it before and I'll say it again, the public library would be a great place to work if it wasn't for the patrons and the staff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Le Scaramouche
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 07:06 PM

Not automated libraries, automated systems, IE the computers they use.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Leadfingers
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 07:18 PM

To Quote THE Librarian - "Oook!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,G-Spot
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 07:27 PM

Thank you for the information, but, being a non-librarian, I do not give a poop.

GS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Jun 05 - 10:16 PM

Databases, who needs databases? I don't need no steenking databases. . .

You want to check that book out? Sorry, someone else has it. You want a hold on it, and have it shipped to this here branch? Sure, let me fire up the 'puter. . .


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: dianavan
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 12:50 AM

I don't know much about library automation systems but I do know about libraries? I think they are the institutional system that denotes a highly civilized society.

Where else can you get free books?

Where else can you educate yourself regardless of social class or income?

Where else are we encouraged to become literate citizens.

If we ever lose our library systems, we are doomed.

BTW - Vancouver has a spectacular library. The architecture is amazing! It makes me proud.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 03:39 AM

Trouble is... with all this automation of things, the decline in trained staff is inevitable. This means you end up with no-one to fight for the lesser known authors, the new faces, or the old classics. Staff are picked on their ability to work a computer terminal, stack shelves and not have the audacity to fall sick or have a life. My local council got rid of 12 members of regular staff in as many months (and that doesn't include the 'natural falloff' of retirees etc). The libraries here were reduced from 10 to 8, leaving some of the poorer, outlying areas without a facility. Sure, they opened one lovely spanking new library, but it was at the cost of 2 others. And where did they situate it? In the middle of a brand new housing estate full of Yuppies and Dinks (Dual Income, No Kids), the very people least likely to use a library.

I used to love working in my library. It was small, friendly and staffed with the same people every day. We had customers whom we knew, we knew what they liked, we knew what they'd try and we knew what they meant when they said 'I read a book last year, it was blue with a lady in a long dress on the cover, do you still have it?' We had time to talk to people whilst flicking through the tickets, we had time to show people new books and we had time to spare for a chat to those who wouldn't have spoken to another person all day. Because we were there regularly, we knew the books, we knew the clientele and we knew what sort of things we could order for stock.

Then the computers came in. Suddenly, our budget was halved, to pay for the new computer system; we had to be retrained (I'm still waiting for my formal training and I left there 6 years ago!); we had to be faster, more efficient, less accurate..... The library I worked in closed down, was never replaced and now has been demolished. The next library I went to - same happened. The computer system cost so much to set up, we couldn't afford books. That closed, depriving a school of much of its resource material, a community of its meeting place and 3 people of their jobs. I got moved again. Eventually I was the only regular member of staff amongst 5 'sessional' workers who knew all about computers and nothing about literature. One didn't know who wrote 'Great Expectations' and another had read only comics.

The trend now, in our local libraries, is to go for the talking books, the audio-visual material, things that they can charge for. In England, the statute says that only books need to be free in lending libraries.... so why stock something that doesn't generate income?

Oh, and by the way.... the inter-library loan system worked perfectly well without a computer.. we could use it every day and we got the books we needed. It was called 'a letter', often accompanied by 'a phone call'.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Noreen
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM

I'd rather to a stock check with the aid of an automated system than write them all out by hand!

Interview this afternoon demanding knowledge of Heritage and TALIS as well as 'an indepth understanding of Knowledge Desk and the search engines therein'.

I have used the first, learned about the second and never heard of the last. Figers crossed!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM

Can anybody out there enlighten this man what library automation means?

Wilfried


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Tracey Dragonsfriend
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 09:07 AM

The computer systems that handle membership, lending & stock control in libraries, I'd guess...


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 11:03 AM

As well as printing management, use of public Internet computers, cataloging, purchasing,, invoicing, billing, sending notices by post or by phone, Interlibrary Loan, et-bloody-cetra.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,bbc at work
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 11:26 AM

For me, as a school librarian, there's no cutdown in staffing, since I'm it. This year was my first w/ an automated catalog & circulation system. I'm still getting acquainted w/ how it works, but find that it is quicker & more accurate than my previous systems & allows me to easily do things that I tended to avoid before, like inventory & cataloging. The kids also seem to enjoy checking out books more, now that they don't need to fill out cards to get them!

bbc


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JulieF
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 11:26 AM

Thanks Rapaire.   

As I have have responsibility for our Dynix system ( on the systems side rather than the library) I wonder why there's been no notification out to us British users.   Am starting to look at a major system upgrade next year so any info is useful.

J


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: mack/misophist
Date: 21 Jun 05 - 11:32 AM

When the two biggest companies in a field merge, a near monopoly is formed. Time for smoke and mirrors, poor support, and political games. Am I correct?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 03:39 AM

Well, having worked nearly a quarter of a century with card catalogues and ledgers I can't praise the electronic systems enough. They are fast, and any change in the catalogue is efficient immediately. I started with 52 years learning to drive a computer, and I must say: I've won a lot of lifetime letting this dull slave doing my tedious menial work.
The introduction of library automation, and a reorganization of our university library system brought no cutdown in staffing, but all library work is now done by qualified librarians - a big improvement which is highly appreciated by the customers. A lot of non-librarians is now set free to keep our libraries open for a longer time: 12,5 hours, seven days in a week.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 08:58 AM

Exactly, Wilfred.

The card catalog was the most efficient product we had until the computer catalog came along. And the computer catalog, with the ability to deal with misspellings, incomplete queries, instant updating and indexing, and multiple users querying the same thing at the same time is as superior to the card catalog as the card catalog was to the book catalog.

Computers have allowed librarians to go back to being librarians, to helping the users, instead of doing endless, mind-drugging, repetitve tasks. You don't need a graduate degree to file catalog cards, but it sure comes in handy when someone asks you how to go about mummifying a squirrel (as I have been asked) or whether or not a new "artificial blood" can pass through the placental membrane (and I've been asked that, too).


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: ranger1
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 09:05 AM

Yeah, but I miss being able to see who read the book before me!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Tracey Dragonsfriend
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 09:09 AM

Now I want to know how you DO mummify a squirrel...


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 09:29 AM

Ah, but knowing who read the book before you violates the laws on the confidentiality of patron records and is a violation of privacy. You'd have to get a warrant to find out, and no, I'm not kidding. Actually, we don't even keep that info very long any more -- a few days and then it's gone. (Even on the old hand-filled-out cards we didn't keep it -- when the sign-out card was full we ripped it up and made a new one.)

And Tracey -- first go kill a squirrel in such a way that it's not all messy. A .22 shot to the spine or poison or old age are the preferred ways; roadkill or a shotgun blast are messy and will make too much trouble. Get some natron (an impure calcium carbonate powder) and you'll need severa pounds of it. Lay the carcase out on a board, belly up. Make a small cut in the stomach just to the left of the midline and draw out the innards (all of them, including the lungs and hears); you may have to reach inside to do a good job). Wash out the body cavity several times. Then draw the brains out either through the nose or via the removal of on the upper vertebra at the back of the head. Wash out the skull cavity, too. Pack these cavities natron and bury the whole mess in natron for a few weeks. (Oh, yeah -- put the innards you removed into canopic jars; don't worry about the brain, which came out in little pieces, because brains aren't important). After a few weeks dig the body, which now should be dried, out of the natron (which will have hardened from the body liquids) and pack the cavities with rolls of linen soaked in cedar oil. Carefully mold the features of the squirrel back into shape, and wrap the whole thing in linen bandages (don't forget the amulets and sacred signs on the bandage as you're rolling). Put it into a sarcophagus under a pyramid for a few thousand years.

That's sort of the gist of it. Herodotus has a good description, except don't don't don't use a soaking of natron dissolved in water; Herry got that part wrong. If you soak the squirrel in a natron solution you'll be very, very sorry.

(Warning: squirrel brains have been found to transmit Crutchfield-Jakobs Disease, so be careful. And above all, don't eat the brains on toast.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 09:38 AM

We still have one active card catalog going at UTA. I discovered it recently, when one of the librarians had to move from one office to another, and didn't have room for this inside the new office. It's the million or so cards that serve the government documents he manages. His eyes roll back in his head when you suggest converting that to a computer database.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 22 Jun 05 - 11:33 AM

Govdoc librarians are very, very, very, very, very strange people. They speak Sudoc and hardly anyone can undestand them. Usually, they gather in small defensive groups and fling old copies of The Federal Register at onlookers. Whenever they go to meetings, ALA Rules state that they must dress in white from the crown of their head to their toes, ring a small bell, and shout "Unclean! Unclean!" whenever someone approaches. If they fail to do this they are banished forever to the Bibliography Department where they spend eternity comparing the holdings of the library to old bookstore catalogs.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Kaleea
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 03:53 AM

Why don't we get an opinion from the First Lady?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Tracey Dragonsfriend
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM

Thank you, Rapaire! Next time I feel an insurmountable urge to mummify something, I'll be well prepared...


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 09:10 AM

Web based Library system ad below sez. it allows you to automate your library for $1 a day - I wonder how many days a million card index would take!!

Our consultants had a wonderful card index, put together over the years by staff & when it was transferred to a database by scanning & indexing all the cards it took months of intensive work to do so. It was called Indra's cards after the instigator who was continually adding to it.

Then someone worked out a name for it so Indra's cards can still be INDRA's cards (Index of whatever) so that when he eventually retires his hard work will be remembered.

Typing records into the database is not as interesting as writing on 3x5 cards, there's no personality, the cards were a record of past staff, database records are anonymous.

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 09:18 AM

SiS, I've seen catalog cards that were handwritten. Records of things long gone. But the "library hand" was a standardized penmanship taught in library schools until, in some cases, the 1930s.

Why? you ask, when the typewriter had been in use for quite a few years. Well, in the US, the American Library Association didn't "approve" the use of the typewriter for catalog cards until around 1935. ALA wasn't sure of the permanency of the ink from the ribbons, you see....

By 1971, when the Ohio College Library Center (OCLC) began printing vast numbers of catalog cards by computer, ALA had finally realized that while the catalog card had to last a while, they were in no way permanent. Something to do with libraries "weeding" stuff and pulling out the cards -- they made great scrap paper.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: John Hardly
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 10:19 AM

shhhh!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 10:38 AM

The Associate Director of our university library hates to throw out anything, so those old cards from the regular catalog have been her notecards for ages. As long as what she has to say fit on just the back side she's set!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 11:23 AM

In the 1970's and again in the 1980's I worked in public libraries. Now when I go to the library, I am dismayed at how disorganized the books are and how hard it is to find books on a topic. Rarely do I undertake a search on the computer without being moved to swear words.

For example, I was looking for a book of knitting patterns. Within six inches on the shelf, I found a book of knitting patterns, a book on the ready-to-wear knit fashion industry, a biography of Calvin Klein and an expose (it claimed) of Ralph Lauren. I'm sure this was the result of using computerized systems to catalog books.

Last week I looked up "sew clothes" and was given 8 books about sewerage systems instead. Maybe they thought they were providing the real poop on fitting techniques.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 11:28 AM

subject "archeology" found no matches in the library you searched.

See what I mean!? Do you believe that the library system in a city of 1,000,000 people does not have any books on archeology?

This is what comes of putting our libraries in the hands of people who wear baseball caps backwards and spent their childhoods playing Space Invaders.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 12:50 PM

Could it be that you have to search under "archaeology"? I found 16 titles under "archeology" at my local library, including the video of The Mummy. I found 257 titles under "archaeology." Oh, and I found 132 titles under "sewing" and only one under "sew clothes." This is in a system of small-town libraries. The county seat has 12,000 people.

It's true that manual card catalogs have some advantages over computerized searches - especially for people who can't spell or can't think of appropriate keywords. It takes a new way of thinking to find things with a computer.

It's also true that computers give managers an excuse for staff reduction - but managers will always find ways to understaff and overload. Good libraries with good philosophies and good management won't suffer staffing shortages because of computers. If your library is understaffed, don't blame it on computers - it's management that's responsible.

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jun 05 - 01:51 PM

Databases that are more forgiving of spelling errors are coming, we encounter them every so often. Google and other search engines will ask "Don't you mean archaeology?" when you type in archeology. I think Amazon is set up that way. But most of them see a misspelling as something to ignore, not an opportunity to triangulate on what you really meant to type in. That's why I have a two-fold system. I have a little speller's dictionary (book) next to the computer, but if I'm in a real hurry I just type the word into the Google bar at the top of the page and see what it suggests. It isn't always right either, so in that case the book casts the overriding vote.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 24 Jun 05 - 09:08 AM

next to my mouse is a pad of flimsies. I don't have used catalogue cards for notes, I have unused flimsies. I recently scrounged the last box as it was heading to the shredder in our cleanup. Zillions of little notes can be made over the next few years/decades/remainder of my life.

SRS - I also have an old Oxford dictionary at work, (1935, r/p 1964) that I use in conjunction with Spellcheck.


sandra

for the uninitiated, flimsies are pads of paper catalogue slips used for writing catalogue entries so the typist - remember them? - could create the catalogue card.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 24 Jun 05 - 09:29 AM

A good compouter system will have a way to cross-check bad spelling. The one we put in in 1989 we programmed with such things as "Dec" and "Desember" crossed to "December" and "Feburary" to "February." There is, however, no way that we could figure all possible spelling variations.

As for searching "sew clothes," did you try "sew" or "sew*"? Were you searching a keyword search or one that required exact matches? Title or Subject index? (And libraries had split their card catalogs into seperate Author, Title, Subject catalogs for a very, very long time.)

It would also help if I knew which automation system was being used -- some are waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better than others.

Of course, if all else fails, ask a librarian. I promise that we won't call the media about your question.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 12:42 AM

The Spell-check Poem

I have a spelling checker;
It came with my PC.
It plainly marks four my revue
Mistakes I can knot sea.
I've run this poem threw it;
I'm sore your please too no,
It's letter perfect in its weigh,
My checker tolled me sew.

source


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 04:02 AM

Sorry, but the best computer system in the world cannot get up from the counter and pull the book off the shelf for you. Our system (Dynix, by the way) was so full of glitches that you could never guarantee that the book you were enqiring for had actually been published, let alone purchased and catalogued.

I worked in cataloguing for about a year. My first 3 weeks there were spent correcting the spelling mistakes that the computer had allowed through. The next 3 weeks were correcting spelling mistakes that my colleagues had made.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Greg F.
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 10:07 AM

$hite, Sandra, you use a BOOK ??

You must not be aware that everything, absolutely EVERYTHING worth knowing is available "on-line".


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Greg F.
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 10:24 AM

For anyone at concerned about the future of libraries, I suggest reading
Chris Dodge's Knowledge For Sale: Are American Libraries Losing Their Way? in the July/August 2005 issue of Utne magazine [yeah, hard copy, EGAD!- but should be available on-line at http://www.utne.com shortly.

Best, Greg


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 11:39 AM

Greg, I'm old fashioned, give me a book anyday, computers & the Internet are wonderful, of course (where would I be without Mudcat) but they ain't sources of all knowledge.

I work for a Federal Govt agency & we are always receiving emails & phone calls wanting the URL of info, or complaining they can't find something on our website. Very few folk want pamphlets any more. They are usually surprised to find out that we do not collect all information on all subjects (No, we don't have cameras on street corners, or anywhere for that matter, so did not see your tall, distinctively dressed friend knocked down in a hit & run accident; No. we don't know how many toilet flushes there are daily across Oz; No; we have no idea what dietary advice teenagers get in your local area, nor do we know how closely they follow it) and that we do not keep all our info on our website.

Maybe those of us who work in Libraries/Info areas can share similar inquiries. I have a huge list at work.


sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: gnu
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 12:20 PM

Re your list, what's the URL?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 03:14 PM

Rapaire notes:

A good compouter system will have a way to cross-check bad spelling.

A common check is the "sounds like" search. When the few indexes with this feature first appeared, they made it sound like they had something really special; but it usually is accomplished simply by deleting all the vowels in the search string the user puts in. You need a crosslinked "unvowelled" list to search, and it's almost mandatory that the system be able to display multiple returns so the user can narrow it down. Unfortunately, users can still enter gypographic erros, and will still blame the librarian when they can't find what they want.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 25 Jun 05 - 06:04 PM

LtS, I can only say, "Garbage in, garbage out." GIGO was true in the past and is just as true now. And there's not a lot you can do if those inputting the garbage don't care (except get rid of them).

I'm very appreciative of the Utne reference and I intend to 1) read it and, 2) share it with my colleagues in the 2020 Vision Library Think Tank. That's a group of folks invited to help plan the course for Idaho libraries (academic, school, public, etc.) for 2020 and beyond.

As for the "sale" of libraries, well -- as you know, knowledge is poison, especially to those in power.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Greg F.
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 09:03 AM

And the BuShites certainly seem to be winning the War On Knowledge, which they are prosecuting much more forcefully & successfully than the one on "terrorism".

Hey, if you can't beat 'em- BUY 'EM! The American Way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 09:05 AM

URL - wazzat?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 09:38 AM

I haven't read the Utne link yet (just now got back online after a line was cut and I'm catching up) so apologies if this is redundnat, but I want to add this observation:

There are lots of library jobs out there, good ones, and they're harder and harder to fill. Wanna know why? Because librarians are in demand in other non-library settings. They're in demand in many of the support services and in many companies that want people with computer and librarians skills (since their computer folks didn't get the library skills when THEY went to school for their computer skills). And many of those businesses can pay more substantial salaries.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 09:43 AM

When my manager finished her Library & Information Science degree several years back one of her friends got a job with a cancer research organisation - not in the library.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 05:11 PM

More and more library school grads are being snagged by Google and similar orgainzations. Why? -- because private companies have realized that if you want to index knowledge, heck, librarians have been doing it for years and years and years.

Try to hire a Children's Librarian (as I have). Try to find a library school that even suggests children's work as a career to incoming students.

I think it was in 1975 when I won a bet. I bet the CEO of smallish company that I could find out enough information about a business leader of his choice that, were I a terrorist (and no, the concept isn't new), I could "take out" that person. He chose the President of BF Goodrich. Two days later I collected the ten bucks -- I had the man's: business address, HOME address, clubs to which he belonged, boards of corporations and nonprofits of which he was a member, HOME phone number, and more. And similar info on his wife. And I did this using ONLY the resources (and NO computer! check the date) available in a small (35,000 volumes), rural public library.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jun 05 - 10:16 PM

Yup. And the library people who run the computer networks and do all of the upkeep and programming and whatnot--I can only assume that they stay where they are because they love the place. They could easily pull down much larger salaries in private industry. A number of them have left over the years to do just that. Many of those IT guys are IT guys, but some of them started as librarians and added the computer skills, or came out of library school as IT librarians. It's scary what those folks know how to do!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Jun 05 - 04:03 PM

At www.thinkgeek.com you can get a tee shirt that says, "I read your email."

And actually, I can. And I have, when it was absolutely necessary. But frankly, your email is boooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrring. Except for one; that one melted the hard drive in my computer. (I did this because the receipients complained that they weren't getting any email, and so I had to check.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 05:56 AM

Rapiere -

The original of one recent Microsoft Word version contained a "document template" that was an extremely(?) spicy love letter "from Bill."

I suspect that few people saw it, as only an idiot would pull up a "form letter" to send declarations of hot lust to a dear one.

The template was of course revised in one of the "critical updates" long ago, and last time I tried to pull it up to show to a friend the website that posted it "for the record" had ceased to exist...

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 06:31 AM

I'm not really sure how far off the subject it is, but the librarians among us, especially, might be interested in an article, The Infinite Library , By Wade Roush May 2005 Technology Review, that discusses the Google library digitization plan.

The "slant" of the article is on how digital library materials may affect the future of libraries and librarians, especially when very large amounts of digitized books and records are made available, so perhaps it's not too far from how "consolidating" digital indexing and management will affect them.

There is, incidentally, a rather nice description in the introductory paragraphs of the Bodlian that may be of casual interest to those who haven't been there recently.

Quite a few experts quoted, with varying notions of what the future holds.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 04:39 PM

The Google initiative is great PR, but it certainly won't happen quickly. Too many books, too few people and equipment.

I'll also point out that humanity has never, ever, stopped using a method of communicating and storing knowledge.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: beardedbruce
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 05:09 PM

Rapaire,

Clay tablets?

The sticks that were used by Celtic cultures?

The symbols used by the Easter Islanders?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 06:52 PM

Ha! Cunieform (the clay things) were simply marks chiseled into a medium. CD's (and before them, vinyl, wax, etc.) record their data by means of pits in the medium (LPs, etc. used "bump"). Granted, you need special equipment to recover the data, but the method is the same.

I believe that the scripts of Easter Island are incised into stone. See above -- and the nearest headstone or monument.

You're confusing the means and the message. Alphabets change -- it wasn't very long ago that the Roman alphabet didn't use "J" or "U", for instance. Alphabets even disappear. The means, in one form or another, stays around.

E.g.:

* scrolling down the computer screen
* a reel of film, microfilm -- and even a cassette -- is a scroll

New methods of recording information come along every so often -- RFID, for instance. But we continue to use the old methods, though they might be diguised in new clothes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 03:33 AM

The old methods are a subject of concern though. I've been poking at my piles to find a citation for a comment I saw recently to the effect that the Library of Congress has digital information already archived in many unreadable formats.

My recollection is that the comment indicated more than 1,000 different formats (it might have been 10,000), and that the LOC currently has no way of reading 40% (or was it 60%) of the formats.

I'm pretty sure I made a note to myself to make better notes on stuff like this; but I can't seem to find that note either...

Even some "current" systems contribute to inaccessiblility of information. The US Geological Survey publishes "topographic maps" that aren't maps. They're freely available, and downloadable from several sources; but the information is in a database format giving elevations at grid points, and the database format isn't readable - or readily importable - by commonly available db programs. To make the "picture" of the map, you're expected to use the program written by a long-gone former USGS genius, who wrote multiple versions - similar but different - during his career. Commercial versions of the program go for about $1,500 (US) last time I looked, and the consensus of "users" is that the program doesn't work unless you have the ability to write your own "patches" to the program to handle each dataset a little differently - to accomodate the version in use when the data was collected and entered.

A few companies make a business of converting the USGS data to usable maps. DeLorme is one leading example. Since they do the conversion to make a marketable product the conversion is to their own proprietary format that can only be read by their program(s).

The LOC and other archiving organizations do have programs in process to convert old stuff to "currently usable" formats; but no one knows how long the new formats will remain usable. Archives require continuing maintenance, which means dependable and continuous budgets; but that's another rant pending.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 03:48 AM

Lots of stuff that was stored on microfiche 40 years ago is already unreadable. Magnetic tape has been stored badly and is degrading quicker than it can be copied. Technology changes so quickly that the results of my genealogical researches I put onto a floppy disk 10 years ago is already unreadable because it was done in a programme that isn't recognised now. Thank heavens I kept all my papers.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 04:02 AM

Liz -

"Her" family used an old program to record some genealogical data that I had to pay to have converted from old 5" floppies in order to recover. Most of what I found was "errors," since the kid who did it as a scout project didn't have much to work with.

I have pulled out a few "modern" 3.5" floppies less than 10 years old and stored under very good conditions, and find more than 80% of them unreadable. Fortunately most of my records have been regularly moved to/through new machines and updated (re-saved in a current format) fairly regularly; but I suppose I've lost my income tax returns from before 1956 - maybe. In any real "archiving" system, the loss of the old programs that were mostly on those floppies would be the real tragedy.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 07:55 AM

Oh for a book and a shady nook ...

When I'm at home I don't have access to the vast piles of reference material stowed in our University Library, and I'm glad when I'm able to look something with the browser but - I prefer the old printed books in my small library, inherited from generations. Every touch of the marvelous bindings and the clean pages makes my heart jump, and with some books I smell the oriental tobacco my beloved grandfather smoked.

To avoid loosing most important notes due to an electronic desaster I still write on clean sheets with an undestructable ink - not with a fountain pen or a biro, but with a quill. These are the simple joys of life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 08:59 AM

We will be binding the PAPER copies the minutes of our Library Board meetings. Putting them on CD was suggested as a cheaper alternative, but these are supposed to become permanent records.

I try to periodically "exercise" my reel-to-reel tapes and cassettes, but some haven't been touched in years.

I am, professionally and personally, concerned about the unreadability of data. Most here may have seen a 5.25 inch floppy, but how many have seen an 8 inch one (hey, I'm talking magnetic disks here; get your mind outa the gutter!). Have you ever seen paper tape? punched cards? or
programmed by using jumper wires on a board?

Our library system "went down" last night. The staff simply continued checking stuff in and out...by writing barcodes on paper instead of recording them in SQL tables in a Sybase-powered database.

"Artificial Intelligence is only as intelligent as the length of the power cord."


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 09:34 AM

Despite the hype, we haven't made it to a "paperless" society in my neck of the woods. Far from it. We seem to print copies of everything just in case the disk copy crashes. I print out versions of things I'm writing in case something happens to my file--I can scan in (or retype) from the draft. The more some things are supposed to change, the moreso they are of what they were before. (don't try to diagram that last sentence)

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,sandra in sydney walking thru the backdoor
Date: 29 Jun 05 - 09:49 AM

We are binding our library as we are moving into a smaller space. Today 16 pamphlet boxes (1.5 shelves) were replaced by 7 volumes. Admittedly these particular titles are also on our website, as are all our publications from the past 8 years, but we still need the paper volumes.

Our Director fought his fellow Directors to keep the space & the library, as most of the staff use electronic sources supplied by Cebtral Office library from all kinds of organisations, but our consultants only use our data, & it's not all available electronically.

We have electronic products we've put out in the past 15 years that can no longer be read or used by our long-term clients. Fortunately the data is still available on our databases & naturally our consultants can retrieve it, but that costs money, & why should existing clients pay for new copies just because Bill or someone updates their software & hardware every couple of years?

Gimme a book anyday (as long as I can still access the internet)

SRS - I also print out stuff cos ya never know! Last year I found I had deleted a file at work at some unknown time. It was the list of my CD collection which fits on 7 metres of shelves. Fortunatly I had a paper copy a few months old & Bob Bolton scanned it in for me & all I had to do was check the shelves & add the newer stuff.

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 30 Jun 05 - 03:59 AM

The thread started with Rapaire's notice of the wedding of two Leviathans. Shall we get bigger eggs now?


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 30 Jun 05 - 05:58 AM

Of course the thread has drifted a bit. The title noted that "Only Librarians Will Care" about the original information.

We don't care about that information - but we do care about our librarians, so we just changed the subject.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 30 Jun 05 - 08:50 AM

The merging has created one company that is installed in over 20,000 libraries world-wide. Basically, number 2 had a cash surplus and bought number 1. Both were, and are, privately held companies. The products they created are marked with a *, the others they support:

*Unicorn
*iBistro
DRA
*Classic Dynix
*Horizon
Inlex
PALS
*Corinthian (brand new, based on Horizon, and aimed at academic libraries)

There may be others, but these are all I'm aware of.

Basically, an 800 pound gorilla has merged with a 750 pound gorilla and created a 2,000 pound gorilla. More interesting, I believe that the basic source code for a seperate product called "Endeavor" was effectively owned by Dynix -- and Endeavor won the contract to automate the Library of Congress.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,Nancy King at work
Date: 01 Jul 05 - 11:42 AM

As a public librarian who has had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the Computer Age, I will have to say that automated library systems really are better than the old manual methods in many ways. Our (Montgomery County MD) library department has 23 branches, most of which are very busy all the time (the branch where I work routinely gets 1500 - 2000 people through the door every day -- I'll probably be interrupted several times while trying to type this...).

The computer enables us to keep track of materials and borrowers and make changes pretty easily. It also allows our customers to search the catalog, check their records, and place items on hold from home. It can also be of tremendous help in searching for needed materials -- many's the time it's helped me identify (not to mention locate) an item someone is looking for, when none of the humans around had any idea what it was. And the on-line databases, particularly the ones for magazine and newspaper articles, make available vastly more resources than any public library could hope to buy (or store) in hard copy.

There are downsides, of course. Some reference sources are MUCH easier to use in print format than on the computer, but now that they're on line, we no longer have the print copies. Searching on-line requires a certain amount of experience and knowledge of conventional forms, whereas the old card catalogs were somewhat more intuitive. And naturally, when the computers go down, there's no backup. Yes, we can still check out books (by writing barcodes by hand and entering them later), and experienced librarians can often find items for patrons, but the level of service is nowhere near what it is when everything is working properly.

As for the merger, I can only hope it will result in some improvements to SIRSI. My confidence level is not very high, however. Montgomery County has had SIRSI for several years now, and let's just say there are issues. My main quarrel is that it is not intuitive for patrons to use -- almost everyone needs some help before they can use it at all effectively (I suppose I should be grateful for that -- there are still jobs for librarians...). And of course there are multitudinous quirks that drive us crazy in the back room.

We shall see....

Nancy


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Jul 05 - 03:15 PM

At the Wheaton MD branch the booksale in the basement is super. John has been very nice for the last 9 years of the friends of the library book store. I volunteered there many moons ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,ragdall
Date: 02 Jul 05 - 01:49 AM

From: GUEST,Nancy King at work Date: 01 Jul 05 - 11:42 AM

Searching on-line requires a certain amount of experience and knowledge of conventional forms, whereas the old card catalogs were somewhat more intuitive.


My experience with SIRSI (Unicorn) is limited to elementary school libraries.

Children found the card catalogues very difficult to use. They would invariably resort to wandering shelf searches, or abandon the topic in which they were originally interested and grab something else. I find that children will use the computer catalogue, without prompting. They have a high rate of success in their searches.

I love the automated system!

I can instantly see that the student who is trying to check out three books already has fifteen books charged out and overdue. Then I can, with a few mouse clicks, call up the titles, dates due, etc. and send the student to search for the overdue books.

It is so much easier to conduct the annual inventory of a school library, by wanding the bar codes, than it was using the card files.

I have often thought that correct order on library shelves would be much easier to maintain if we just didn't let anyone else touch the books on the shelf. ;)

Maybe the newly combined company will produce a programme which will scan the spines of books on a shelf, locate those books which are out of order, and rearrange the books correctly? Then catalogue users will have more success in locating a book on the shelf.   

rags


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Jul 05 - 02:17 AM

We use the Voyager and Endeavor system and/or programs at the university library where I work. Since I'm not a cataloger or in circulation, I have only a superficial knowledge of it. The part that I go into to look for a record or look up my account. It is so much easier to use than the old NOTIS system we had before. And at this point in time, the interfaces are so superior. When I started at the library in 1996 much of what we're doing today was just a big wish, a librarian's dream. It is amazing how fast some of this has come along.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 02 Jul 05 - 09:28 AM

My guess is that the Gartner Group, who will be investigating the products in the last quarter of the year, will recommend that Horizon and Unicorn be combined, with Horizon the base. HIP and iBistro will also be combined, with an iBistro base.

What I'd really like is for them to say, "Borizon and Unicorn both suck. Dump 'em and work on Classic Dynix, which is already a mature product." But they won't.

Way, way, back, Dynix and Notis were both purchased by Ameritech (which was itself bought by SBC). Notis was developing a client-server product called "Horizon," and Dynix was developing Marquis. Ameritech re-branded Marguis as Horizon and dumped the Notis c-s product. Ameritech Library Services (nee Dynix) become epixtech when Ameritech was bought by SBC and ALS was cut loose, and about three years ago epixtech became Dynix again.

Jane whats-her-name, the former head of Notis, took some of the codersx and other employees with her when she left Notis and formed Endeavor, which makes the Voyager product. They were ONLY going to deal with academic libraries, going so far as to rebuffing this poor, benighted public librarian when he only wanted to see the product. I have heard -- HEARD -- that the source code for Endeavor is very much the same as NOTIS, and said NOTIS source code is actually the property of Dynix, via the Ameritech acquisition about ten years ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Greg F.
Date: 05 Jul 05 - 12:59 PM



UTNE ARTICLE HERE


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 05 Jul 05 - 06:37 PM

Thanks, Greg. I appreciate it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 06 Jul 05 - 03:19 AM

So do I. Thanks, Greg.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 16 Aug 05 - 07:12 PM

Mobile Librarians


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Aug 05 - 01:53 PM

cute!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Oct 05 - 01:43 PM

This came via email from one of the librarians in my neck of the woods:

"The University of Iowa Libraries is celebrating its sesquicentennial (150th) anniversary this year. We do exhibitions in the North Lobby of the Main Library, and the one that has been up this fall is about (gasp!) librarians--titled "Beyond the Bun : A Look Inside Librarian Culture." The following quotations were prominently displayed--"


"Beware the lustful fires that burn in a librarian's heart. They can rage beyond all control."

      --The Onion, May 28, 2003


"Librarians possess a vast store of politeness. These people get asked every crazy question on God's green earth and they tolerate the cranks and eccentrics."

      --Garrison Keillor, Lives of the Cowboys


"Libraries are brothels for the mind, and librarians are the madams, greeting customers, understanding their strange tastes and needs, and pimping books."

      --Guy Browning, The Guardian, October 18, 2003


"He's like Super Librarian, y'know? Everyone forgets, Willow, that knowledge is the ultimate weapon."

      --Nicholas Brendon as Xander Harris in Buffy the Vampire Slayer


"Librarians are subversive. You think they're just sitting there at the desk, all quiet and everything. They're like plotting the revolution, man."

      --Michael Moore, Buzz Flash Interviews, March 13, 2002


"Show me a computer expert that gives a damn, and I'll show you a librarian."

      --Patricia Wilson Berger, Chicago Tribune, June 1990


"If reference librarians were paid at market rates for all the roles
they play, they would have salaries well over $200,000."

      --Will Manley, The Truth About Reference Librarians, 1996


"In the nonstop tsunami of global information librarians provide us with floaties and teach us to swim."

      --Linton Weeks, Washington Post, January 13, 2001


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 30 Oct 05 - 06:00 PM

SRS -

All good quotes.

While re-reading through this thread, a couple of comments about how hard it is to find good librarians triggered a recollection that sheds some light perhaps on how warped the views held by the general public, and unfortunately by some "academic professionals" really is.

Some may be familiar with a test called the MMPI that was used quite commonly by psychologists and counselors fairly recently. I don't know how frequently it's still used, but it was originally based on results from veterans returning from WWII, so it's been around for a while. It was reported as still used by a majority of "social counselors," in my area, as recently as 1998.

The Minneapolis Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) test presents a series of (usually) 100 statements, and you indicate whether each statement applies or doesn't apply to you. From the results, your counsellor essentially tells you how your personality conforms to "normal." Incremental updates have been made, and there are variations on the theme, but for the veteran population used originally to establish "normal" the norm may be taken as "blue-collar workers with high school education." The last time I had occasion to look at current versions, that was still pretty much true.

One of the statements on the test (ca. 1985) was:

"I would enjoy working in a library."

This is one of FIVE statements in the typical 100 statement test that determines whether you fit into a particular "personality group"; and using the "standard evaluation of results" agreeing with any one of the five would produce the result that you exceed the one-sigma level of deviation for:

"Likelihood of acting out homosexual tendencies."

There were (are?) standard corrections that were supposed to be made for things like age, sex, level of education, etc., but most "counselors" just sent them to a consulting agency who ran them through a machine for "analysis" and sent back the raw result.

If you were a male, with at least 2 years of college, your counselor would invariably (>80% probable) inform you that you displayed at least a "3-sigma" deviation from normal with respect to "strong homosexual tendencies" - if you were normal and WHETHER OR NOT you were so inclined - if only the standard "machine grading" of the test was used.

Competent counselors would automatically "hand grade" the test result, or at least apply appropriate corrections to the "machine result," for anyone who didn't fit in the "standard population," and wouldn't make the mistake; but the fact that the notion that interest in an "educated" job was associated with that kind of label by the large bulk of the population perhaps indicates the level of ignorance extant.

I'll note that the textbooks in the mid 1980s admitted that the test was incapable of indicating sexual preference for female subjects, and that any teenager graded against the "normal" curves probably would be reported as at least 2-sigma deviant for "rebels against authority" and "fails to consider consequences." So you need a counselor for that?

One other question that I specifically recall that was in the "group of five" was:

"I enjoy raising plants."

I can see a lot of farm folk getting hung by this one, and found it sort of humorous; but I suppose that male librarians especially should be warned - if you ever need counselling, don't mention the flower pot.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 30 Oct 05 - 09:28 PM

Well, so much for growing aphrodisiac plants at home...and the girls liked them sooooo much.

IFLA.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 12:00 AM

A new Book Scanner to be presented at the CES 2006 (Consumer Electronics Show) within the next few days, claims to be available at $35,000 per machine and able to do unattended scanning of a book at 248 pages per hour in color, 500 pages per hour B/W, at 100dpi. Book capacity up to 12 x 20 inches x 2 inch thick.

Slower rates of course, but max resolution is claimed to be up to 600 dpi in color or b/w. Windows compatible control software.

Product name "BookDrive."

Current book scanners used by libraries run $150,000 and require someone to turn the pages. Flatbed scanners are somewhat cheaper, but often can't be used without breaking the book's spine so the pages can lay flat.

Every home should have one of these!

The linked article is pretty brief, but it might be worth watching for if this thing is actually any good. As one example of what's missing, it doesn't say whether OCR is included; but TextBridge isn't all that expensive if it isn't.

More news possibly when the CES wraps up and the writeups begin to come out – in about a week maybe.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 10:49 AM

I suppose Google was the first customer. Soon we'll be able to read the Kama Sutra hands free! ☺


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 11:49 AM

Bill D

Google has already, apparently, bought their $150,000 scanners; but they've run into a little problem with the copyright cops, and with a few reluctant/recalcitrant librarians from what I've heard.

The fellow pushing this new machine appears to be more of a huckster than an inventor, but he's got some "possibly competent" tech help. His stated (in ad-speak, of course) goal is to make his scanner cheap enough to put one in the hands of "most home users" (so that we can have the same © fights over books that we deal with for recordings - and performances - now).

If he's really got a working automatic page turner, the people building the high priced ones may want to talk about a license to incorporate it, since that's the big bottleneck with the current machines. I doubt if you'd want to turn even a good one loose on a 300 year old parchment; but there's a whole lot of stuff where a wrinkled page or two wouldn't be a disaster.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 12:27 PM

Stuff like manuscripts and incunabula will most likely never be scanned.    The exposure to the light necessary for scanning can damage the item.

Should you like spend eight minutes on a frightening future, click
here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Bill D
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 01:53 PM

the future is so frightening that they seem to have deleted it...file not found.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 02:18 PM

Bill D -

I got the site, but with my slow connection it's unplayable and there's no way to I can see to get a download to play it from disk. It's a Macromedia Flash playback, which some might say is about like voluntarily downloading a virus; but the snatches it burps at me indicate it probably is an interesting fantasy(?).

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 04:50 PM

It's the story of Googlezon, or EPIC. And it's frightening. You might be able to find it by using a search engine.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 06 Jan 06 - 07:59 PM

I went back and turned it on and then just left for about an hour, and it finally did get itself buffered in. But in the context of this thread - it didn't mention that any of that wonderful "intelligence" was getting archived...

It did note that it was mostly wasted on most of the people (to paraphrase very loosely).

John


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jan 06 - 01:23 PM

well! Today it popped up instantly, and played just fine.

Pretty interesting scenario as it moves almost imperceptibly from history to speculation and prediction.

I do think that perhaps various entities such as Google and MS and others are doing 'creative, assimilative technological reordering' faster than most of the world can appreciate or understand....fast enough to give Alvin Toffler ulcers!

There ought to be some vetting process before we all become part of a few people's idea of Global Integration. I, for one, do not WISH for all my computer programs, written by individuals and chosen by ME for the features I like, to be replaced with 'online' generalized functions controlled by only a few.

But at my age and with my knowlege, I don't know how to avoid it. Maybe I won't have to...maybe only my son needs to worry, and he has very little of the concept of what it was like to be ABLE to choose in a free market the parameters of his life.

scary, it is...


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 07 Jan 06 - 10:19 PM

Yeah. It is scary. That's why I brought it up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 11:15 AM

http://www.ala.org/ala/pressreleases2006/debember2006/YALSAelectroniclist.htm

YALSA announces new electronic discussion list


CHICAGO - The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), the fastest growing division of the American Library Association (ALA), is pleased to announce a new open discussion list, YA-MUSIC.

The purpose of this discussion list, which is open to both members and non-members, is to discuss how libraries can use music in all its forms to serve the teens in their communities. Librarians are encouraged to discuss recommended practices in collections and programming, as well as specific media, including CDs, MP3s and new emerging technologies. People wishing to subscribe to YA-MUSIC may do so online at http://lists.ala.org/wws/info/ya-music.

"To most teens, music is as natural as breathing--and just as important," said Joseph Wilk, convener of YALSA's Teen Music Interest Group. "Music accompanies teens when they read, do homework, play video games and hang out with friends. Music collections and services are critical for any teen-friendly library."

"According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the circulation of audio and video collections keeps increasing," said YALSA President Judy Nelson. "YALSA's new list, YA-MUSIC, allows librarians a place to connect virtually and talk about these popular collections."

The YA-MUSIC list joins many other YALSA discussions lists, such as YALSA-BK, which invites subscribers to discuss specific titles, as well as other issues concerning young adult reading and young adult literature; YA-YAAC, that offers information on programming, teen advisory groups, professional development, and just about everything else; and YALSA-L which provides news and information about ALA and YALSA programs and activities and provides subscribers a channel of communication for feedback to ALA and YALSA. For information on these lists, as well as other electronic resources from YALSA, please visit the Electronic Resources section of the YALSA site at www.ala.org/yalsa.

For nearly 50 years, YALSA has been the world leader in selecting books, videos, and audio books for teens. For more information about YALSA or for lists of recommended reading, viewing and listening, go to www.ala.org/yalsa/booklists, or contact the YALSA office by phone, 800-545-2433, ext. 4390; or e-mail: yalsa@ala.org.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 11:20 AM

Another news item for those in libraries: Aleph and Endeavor have merged.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 12:56 PM

In the UK the role of librarian is being dumbed down. You no longer need a degree to be one. Start at the bottom or middle and work up. Personally I believe that it is a good move. Have a work force of people with proven work records.

Unfortnately it sometimes used to attract a slightly odd kind of graduate in the past. Sure they knew who wrote what and when, but the social skills could be lacking. Lovely folk but with a tendency to being reclusive and well - bookish. Now that's not a bad thing but times move on and the skills needed today are not comparable to the ones needed in the day of the candle and ledger.

Of course they stock audio books and CDs. They are meant to provide what lenders want and to attract youngsters they need to change stock. Without new lenders joining they will disappear quicker than they have done already.

Our local library has a computer terminal room and a cafe. There is no doubt a 'Miss Jones' spinning in her reference section about these new fangled ideas, but the kids like them and they are the future.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Ebbie
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 02:12 PM

I listened to the 2015 link that Rap posted in January, and I agree that it's a scary scenario. However, is it not true that the pendulum does tend to swing back? Just as in the scenario given.

Ideally, and perhaps inevitably, new inventions and systems are incorporated and for awhile things are in upheaval and chaotic. But as the new inventions become assimilated, they get cherry picked and things quiet down again. Until the next invention/innovation.

I just had another scary thought: I wonder if someday EVERYTHING will be online and all the books in all the libraries will be only for reference, not for release outside the library...


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 03:03 PM

Technology will never replace print, for humanity has never rid itself of any method of recording knowledge. CDs and DVDs (and LPs, too for that matter) are just updated versions of cuneiform tablets for example.

Besides, electronic data is noways permanent. Run it past a magnetic field or heat it too much (and below the burning point of paper) and your data is history. And it changes -- try to read an old 8 inch floppy, or a 5.25 inch floppy, or an 8-track tape, or a wax cylinder, or a dictaphone belt and you'll see what I mean. Too much data is stored in too many formats and we are losing easy access to it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Dec 06 - 03:25 PM

More than librarians will love this one:
link


A Triumph in a Garage
Mayme Clayton's Trove of Black History Gathers Dust, and Momentum

By William Booth
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 13, 2006; C01

LOS ANGELES


Working entirely on her own, spending her librarian's salary and later her Social Security checks, Mayme Clayton amassed one of the finest collections of African American history in the world -- and stored it in her garage.

"I got to warn you, it's scary in here." This is Mayme's son, Avery Clayton, talking. He's jiggling his keys and opening the door. He reaches, finds the light switch, clicks. Inside? It is amazing .

"Originally," Avery apologizes, "there were tables and chairs, like a library, and you could sit down. But as you can see -- "

The roof sags, it may leak. There are books, floor to ceiling on shelves, but the passages between the stacks are blocked, with storage cabinets and film cases and cardboard boxes overflowing with photographs, journals, cartoons, correspondence, playbills, magazines, all dusted with a soft fungal dander. Mold.

The old garage appears held together by its peeling paint, out in an overgrown garden, behind a bungalow in a modest neighborhood. For a moment, before the eye begins to settle on the antique book spines in the gloomy light, the garage looks like a hoarder's hiding place, ready for a bulldozer and a trip to the city dump. "She was a hoarder, she was," Avery says. "But she was a hoarder with a vision."

That is the opinion of the experts, too. "She has everything," says Sue Hodson, curator of literary manuscripts at the prestigious Huntington Library east of Los Angeles. "This is probably the finest collection of African American literature, manuscripts, film and ephemera in private hands. It is just staggering. It is just superior in every way."

Hodson says that when the Mayme Clayton Collection is moved, secured, cleaned and catalogued, it will be among the top such archives in the United States, alongside the Vivian G. Harsh Collection at the Chicago Public Library and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at the New York Public Library. (The Schomburg's director, Howard Dotson, described the Clayton holdings as "major and significant" in the Los Angeles Times.)

Avery, a retired art teacher who is now the force behind preserving his mother's legacy, says this is "only a fraction of the collection." The rest of the Claytonia is scattered in storage rooms around Los Angeles and in a climate-controlled vault at a film warehouse, which protects its vast cinema archive of more than 1,700 titles and represents the largest pre-1959 black film collection in the world, including rare silent reels.

Many people may forget that alongside white cinema was its black counterpart, "race movies" seen in some 600 African American theaters and starring the likes of Lena Horne, Duke Ellington, Katherine Dunham and Sammy Davis Jr. The most prolific director and producer was Oscar Micheaux, and Clayton found original prints of many of his films, including the silent movie "Body and Soul," which introduced Paul Robeson to the screen, and "The Exile," Micheaux's first talkie, made in 1931.

By the time she died in October, at age 83 of pancreatic cancer ("I've got a so-so body with a go-go mind," she said in her later years), Mayme Clayton amassed almost 30,000 rare, first-edition and out-of-print books. She was especially strong on the writers of the Harlem Renaissance, obtaining first editions and correspondence from Langston Hughes, Richard Wright and Zora Neale Hurston.

Her trove includes the first book published in America by an author of African descent, Phillis Wheatley's "Poems on Various Subjects Religious and Moral," dated 1773, when she was a slave in Boston. Clayton has the only known copy signed by the author; she paid $600 for it in 1972, far more than she usually spent. Her collecting style was more bargain basement than Sotheby's auction. She'd prowl used bookstores, flea markets, estate sales. When old people died, she'd get into their attics.

In the garage, it still feels like a treasure hunt. There are the first issues of Ebony magazine (She picked up Vol. 1, No. 1, for a dime). A book about Denzel Washington next to "The Negro in Tennessee: 1865 to 1880." There's a "How to Box" manual by Joe Louis lying on a box of Jim Crow cartoons with the label "Negro Jokes" beneath the original movie poster for "Porgy and Bess."

"Oh, that's the one that hung at the premiere at the Orpheum Theatre in New York," says Avery. "Here, look at this."

His mother possessed a complete set of the first abolitionist journal in America, "The African Repository," dated 1830 to 1845. Among the manuscripts, there is an emphasis on paper that predates the Civil War: travel passes and bills of sale for slaves, and plantation inventories.

Avery describes one dated 1790. "They had 408 slaves in the inventory, along with the livestock, the chickens and cows and whatnot. For the slaves, it lists occupation. Field hand. House worker. Blacksmith. Distiller. You know the number one job? Breeding stock. Sixty-two women. You can read all about slavery, but when you hold a document like that in your hand, that is powerful."

In an interview with NPR, Mayme Clayton said, "Unless you know where you've been, you really don't know where you're going." She was born in Van Buren, Ark., and went to New York at age 21 to work as a model and a photographer's assistant, which is where she met her husband, a barber 16 years her senior who brought her back to Los Angeles, and the little house and its garage in the West Adams neighborhood where she lived at the time of her death. Clayton was known as competitive golfer, a quiet force in the community, an obsessive collector/stacker/finder/keeper who enjoyed e-mailing bawdy jokes. She went on to get her master's and doctoral degrees, spending most of her career as a librarian at the University of Southern California and UCLA; she began her collecting because the universities didn't seem that interested in African American artifacts.

Avery Clayton remembers his mother collecting right until the very end. "She bought a poster for a thousand dollars a few months before her transition and I still don't know where she got the money," he says. It was for a black cowboy movie, a popular subgenre, called "The Bronze Buckaroo."

Clayton has assembled a robust group of volunteers and local politicians for the task at hand. He needs to raise $7 million, but doesn't seem too worried. Culver City has already leased him a 24,000-square-foot former courthouse (for a dollar a year), and various universities will provide technical help to curate and organize the pieces. The Mayme Clayton Collection, Avery says, will be out of the garage in weeks. "Before the winter rains," he promises.

Julie Page, head of the preservation department at the University of California at San Diego library, is managing the move, under a federally funded program to save endangered collections. The garage makes her nervous. "I just can't wait to get it all out of there. That collection really needs to be in a secure, safe environment." It is time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 10:13 AM

A friend in the library where I work sent the following story. I'll transcribe it here because I don't expect that Yahoo link to stay active very long.

Yahoo news story (they got it from Reuters)

Yes, I'd like to renew this, please...

Tue Mar 11, 2008

HELSINKI (Reuters) - A Finnish library-goer apparently thought 'better late than never' and quietly returned a book on loan for more than 100 years to a library in Vantaa, in southern Finland.

The library had long since lost track of the loan but welcomed back to its collections the bound copy of a 1902 volume of Vartija, an active religious monthly periodical at the time.

"We are unclear when exactly it was borrowed and who returned it. There weren't any documents with it," librarian Minna Saastamoinen told Reuters.

"There is an old note attached to the book which says there is a fine of 10 pennies a week for late returns," she added.

The library sticker inside the cover, and the old-fashioned handwriting on it, showed the book was last officially loaned out at the beginning of the last century, she said.

Finland is known for a comprehensive library network with more than 900 libraries for its 5.3 million inhabitants. In 2006, each Finn on average visited a library 11 times and borrowed nearly 20 books.

The periodical was borrowed such a long time ago that the Korso branch of the Vantaa library, where the tome was finally handed in, did not even exist when the book was borrowed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: MMario
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 10:19 AM

I hope someone pays the 52000 penny fine!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 09:47 PM

The longest I've ever seen a returned book overdue was one due on October 14, 1964 and returned June 13, 2003. It had long, long ago been taken out of the collection.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 09:58 PM

In the 1980s I found some books from the Yale University library at my great aunt's house. I think they'd been checked out in 1907. I didn't bother to return them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 11:19 AM

I've just had Dana Stabenow agree to be interviewed (via phone) for our new Library radio show!


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Wesley S
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 12:24 PM

You mean we're suposed to take the books back??


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Gulliver
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 09:50 PM

I was working in a charity shop the year before last when an elderly lady came in and dropped a couple of books on the counter. One of them was a library book (of the very library of which I am a director!) with a "due back" date in 1943. I told her (mock-serious) that as this was a library book we couldn't accept it, and that she had better take it back to the library immediately, and ask them to be lenient with the fine. The poor dear became so flustered that I had to take pity and explain that I'd take care of it. It's now back in its original place on the shelf.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,Chicken Charlie
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 11:39 PM

I was a librarian for the last decade or so of my working life. I can't match the 'overdue' stories, but I do remember a lady who sheepishly explained that she had come in to pay for a book that had been destroyed. It was a dog training book, and evidently not a very good one, because Fluffy had shredded it. :)

Sorry I can't share the optimism so often expressed as to the future of the profession--IMO, Al's internet changed the reference librarian's job for the worse. We're no longer asked to guide people to good info; we're asked to help them get on the web so they can take their chances with info posted by everybody and anybody. Oh, well. Someday civilization will collapse under its own weight, the lights will go out in New York, and we will start over.

CC
at 921 Chicken


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Mar 08 - 11:55 PM

We spend a lot of time at the university library where I work introducing all types of students to good reliable databases and how to evaluate sources. It's critical to learn critical thinking when dealing with The Internet.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 14 Mar 08 - 08:43 AM

We once found a used condom used as a bookmark. We discard everything and charged the patron, who paid without a word of protest.

The Internet is only another tool for information and, just as with printed material, people have to learn to approach is critically and with a jaundiced eye. There is much good and much bad or irrelevant on the World Wide Web, just as there is in print.


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: GUEST,Chicken Charlie
Date: 14 Mar 08 - 04:09 PM

SRS--You were in a university library, hopefully dealing with people who better understood the info game. I was in a County branch. At the risk of sounding like an elitist SOB, which I ain't (elitist, that is), there is not the same sensitivity, IMHO.

And shame on you, Rapaire, for discouraging recycling! I'm sure if everybody did what they did, it would stop global warming dead in its tracks.

Seriously, sure folks have to learn a critical approach, but that's just it. How is a public library reference staff going to help them do that--or even make the point that they should--if they just bring their new laptop home and have at it? Professors have captive audiences, who have to go to class (at least sometimes) if they want to graduate, so the profs make them aware of information pitfalls, and good librarians reinforce that. Where I worked, we had no draw. In the last decade, door count went up but reference count went down.

CC


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Subject: RE: BS: Only Librarians Will Care....
From: Rapparee
Date: 14 Mar 08 - 05:03 PM

'Sodd. Our door count last year was over 325,000 and the reference count topped 91,300. Both were up from previous years. Total reference contacts were over 1.2 million (e.g., Where's the bathroom? is a reference contact but we don't make it part of the reference count).


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