Cites & Bytes @ Bailey

a library newsletter, a compendium of interesting tidbits, a communication tool....from Bailey Library @ Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania. (Site Feed)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Uh, I Made You a MixTape...

I am filled with admiration for the "muxtapes" just posted by the Shifted Librarian. Check it out: Muxtape, and the Librarian muxtape by Jessamyn West. Fun librarian music for the weekend!

Relax This Weekend...

in your bookshelf bathtub.

Another in the Boing Boing series of interesting bookshelves....

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Some Bookery...

Paris Hilton reads...

Get a free Children's Book Week poster here... Vote here for the first Children's Choice Book Awards... and Celebrate May 12-18!

From Librarian Judy Silva, beautiful children's books from the Prange Digital Children's Book Collection, 8,000 books published in Japan between 1945 and 1949...

Some are still talking about what type of book should be on your bookshelf, read or unread....

NPR reports on social networking and bibliophilia (not as dirty as it sounds)...

Watch National Library Week videos here... This one celebrates the 7.2 million reference questions answered by librarians weekly and they are very funny... like "would you take a look at this rash?" and "how do you spell one?" and "what size ring would the Statue of Liberty wear?"

The third installment of The Librarian is on the way....

Blessings on Stephen A. Schwarzman, who just donated $100 million to the New York Public Library...

National Book Critics Circle awards have been announced...

Last but not least, check out LibraryThing Local, where you can track events, etc. at your favorite bookstores and libraries...

Wikipedia World 'O Fun...

I thought I was talking to a College Writing class about Wikipedia the other day and gathered up some background information that has been making news (and controversy) lately. Turned out they just wanted to learn about databases, but not being one to waste some good resources, here you go:

William Badke's What to Do with Wikipedia, which reveals that librarians use Wikipedia too (in secret and not for anything very serious) and instead of just wringing our hands about the dumbing down of the academic world, suggests that we should be proactive about using Wikipedia to help develop critical thinking skills.

All the News That's Fit to Print (Out), a New York Times Magazine piece that came out last summer, an interview with the Wikipedia founder and a good look at the internal structure, how wikipedia gets edited and policed, and some good points about the pride of ownership. People who author and/or edit particular subjects are very committed to doing the best job they can.

It appears that we will all have a lot of free shelf space soon, as the New York Times also called on us to Start Writing the Eulogies for the Print Encyclopedia.

Wikipedia alternatives are suggested by Beyond Wikipedia (sent by Librarian Lynn Hoffmann) and Newsweek points to The Revenge of the Experts, wherein professional vetting is sought. They cite as an example of expert guides, but I have to tell you I am personally not all that impressed with those experts and their web sites are nightmares of usability.

And then I did some fun experiments.... do you realize how easy it is to edit Wikipedia? Just click on Edit this page and go to it, you don't even have to log in! For instance, for this class demonstration I made myself Miss America 2007. Fun! Thank you so much! I'm surprised that swimsuit thing worked out, but I am all about world peace.

I didn't save the change, of course, because I don't want to be a vandal but I was truly amazed. And so were the students, for real. I was pointing out to them that if you click the History or Discussion tabs in Wikipedia, the process and dialog are laid bare and are very, very interesting. Isn't it surprising that we don't look behind the curtain, so to speak? Even when the curtain is open?

Also, a little side note... I thought it might be a little more realistic if I were to be Miss America of say, 1922 or something, but there weren't any winners listed beyond like the 1990's or 1980's. This seemed unusual to me but that could possibly be when time began for the average Wikipedia author.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

More Things About March...

It's supposed to be spring, the vernal equinox and all that.... there's Easter, with all sorts of fun for the kiddies... and March Madness... but sadly you have already missed National Quilting Day.

It's a Girl Thing: According to Fast Facts about Women's History Month, 153.6 million of us are holding up the sky in the United States. Read more about our sisters' accomplishments:

Pioneering Anthropolgist: Alice Fletcher lives with the Sioux in 1881
Pioneering Athlete: "Billies" awarded in the spirit of Billie Jean King
Pioneering Poet: Elizabeth Bishop
Pioneering Soldiers: Women Medal Recipients
Pioneering Globally: Imagine Ourselves from the International Museum of Women

Thursday, March 20, 2008

March is National Nutrition Month...

Rita McClelland, Resource Sharing, shares the following resources about a worthy campus cause... The Milk Fund, a non-profit organization.

A Brief History:
Dr. Marcy Leeds has been dealing with issues of national and international hunger for more than ten years. She visited the Philippines in December 1997 and discovered that the majority of children had an inadequate supply of milk due to lack of money. From this observation she started The Milk Fund and has been visiting the Philippines annually to distribute milk to preschoolers and school-aged children. With help from people like you, The Milk Fund continues to provide much needed calcium, protein, and other essential nutrients to young Filipinos.

Milk Facts:
Calcium is mainly found in dairy products along with dark leafy greens and food with added calcium. Some dairy products include milk, cheese, and yogurt. Dairy products are essential because along with containing calcium, they also contain many other needed nutrients. These include protein, phosphorus, magnesium, and added vitamin D (in milk). Together, these nutrients help carry out fundamental processes needed in growing children and teens. Calcium is needed to help bones grow during children’s younger years and also to make the bones strong. If bones do not have adequate calcium, there is a higher risk of developing osteoporosis (brittle bones susceptible to bone breaks, usually seen in elderly women) later in life.

Want to Help?
Make a check payable to SRU Foundation “The Milk Fund” and send to
Dr. Marcy Leeds
Department of Health & Safety
Slippery RockUniversity
Slippery Rock, PA 16057


Two recent events reminded me to put together some voter registration information:
  • I was helping to register student voters at Boozel Dining Hall the other day (and apologies to any students I harassed... you really shouldn't let old people determine your future. Take it from an old person!) I learned a lot about voter registration that day from student activist Dan Klein...
  • and Kutztown Library had voting information on their library blog yesterday. Thanks for motivating me, KU.
So I am working on putting some information together here... it's still incomplete, but I wanted to make it public since the deadline for registration is so near. March 24 is the last day to register to vote in the upcoming Pennsylvania Presidential primary. If you are not registered, do so immediately! Participate in your future!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Recently Read by Brian Crow...

The Appeal by John Grisham.
This is the latest in Grisham's long, popular line of legal novels. The story, as usual, is based in the south, (Mississippi to be exact) and, typically, involves small-town citizens involved in legal action against a large conglomerate. This time, it's a huge chemical company polluting a small town, and a jury awards a large settlement to one of the residents.
Grisham brings in several memorable characters throughout the book, some likable and some not, and weaves them into the story beautifully. Overall, the book should appeal (no pun intended) to experienced Grisham readers who will already have an idea of what to suspect, and to new Grisham readers who will undoubtedly search the archives for his previous works.

Thanks to Dr. Crow (Sport Management) for contributing a "recently read"! Now how about the rest of you?

Monday, March 17, 2008

So Many Books...

From Director Phil Tramdack: Google Book Search Seeping into a Catalog Near You...
From Library Link of the Day: Shelter Me... Book Clubs for the Homeless
From Gawker: Spoiler Alert! The Best 100 Last Lines from Novels
From the Librarians Internet Index: The World A-Wheel, Early Cycling Books at the Lilly Library
From KidsLit: The Golden Kite Awards... Excellence in Literature for Children and Young Adults
From Thirty Creative (and Awesome) Bookshelf Ideas and one more Bench with Bookshelves from Boing Boing
From Gawker: British Libraries Resist Change... or Corruption, Depending on Your Point of View
From Chicken Spaghetti: Eudora Welty's Childhood Reading
From the New York Times: Fake Authors Family Tree
From Boing Boing: Chasing After Book Thieves

From the Better World Books Newsletter....

Library Spotlight

Bailey Library at Slippery Rock University

"The Bailey Library at Slippery Rock University is a relative newcomer to the Better World Books Library Discards & Donations Program and is finding a tremendous benefit through our new PreScreen Program. To let them tell it:

“Since using Better World Books, we have been able to sort the titles using Better World’s (PreScreen) system and let sell for us. We still have book sales, but find we don’t have any leftovers. We no longer have to cut apart covers, sort paper and have someone come pick up the recycled material. It’s a win-win situation, our Friends group profits from Better World selling for us and we also get to donate to the National Center For Family Literacy”. reading room

In fact, the efforts of the Bailey Library have already generated over $100 for literacy on just over 200 books sold and we know that they are just getting started! Through their future shipments, they will continue to create funding for NCFL to further their mission to create educational and economic opportunity for the most at-risk children and parents here in the United States. With the extra revenue they will generate for their Friends of the Bailey Library, they intend to purchase the leisure reading materials and best sellers that they offer in the comfort of the library’s reading room.

Special thanks to Mary Purdy for pioneering the Better World Books Library Discards & Donations PreScreen Program at her library and for her contributions to this article."

Way to go, Mary!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Recently Read Romantically...

I believe I promised some romance earlier in the week... :)
I took a little turn into the romance world, infrequently traveled territory for me, over break and read the following:

And Only to Deceive by Tasha Alexander. Here's the thing... I like a good mystery and am pretty much in when it comes to Lady Emily this and Lord This-n-That so I was pleased to start reading this series about a conveniently widowed British noblewoman with no love for rigid Victorian society rules. I am not a fan, however, of the type of plotting that makes you want to scream at the main character for being so dense. Lord Hargreaves isn't a murderer, stupid, he's a rich hottie and seems to be in love with you for some inexplicable reason. It reminds me of soap opera plots that rely on a never ending series of misunderstandings. Or another of my least favorite plot devices, the woman who trips over a root while running away from monsters/killers, etc. Excuse me, I rant...

A Poisoned Season by Tasha Alexander. That was so annoying that I read the second one in the series and liked it much better. Lady Emily is interested in studying classical culture and art and this time flirts with a cat burglar, who pops in and out of her boudoir with the regularity of a dutiful upstairs maid. But at least she and Lord Hargreaves have agreed to be engaged. The characters are kind of fun and Lady Emily's dragon of a mother softens a little in this volume. I'm actually planning on reading the next one, but I might hide it inside of a graphic novel or something.

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory. A ripping good historical novel, with its share of historical controversy of course, but I totally enjoyed the story of Mary Boleyn, the first sister to warm the bed of Henry VIII. I saw the movie shortly afterward and much preferred the book, which had a real flavor of dark, bloody conspiracies and desperation.

So, that sums up my brief foray into romance novels.... I'm currently reading Out by Natsuo Kirino, wherein a woman kills her husband and her three friends cut up the body and leave it all over Tokyo. Not so lovey-dovey.

Read any good books lately? The invitation is still out... send us your reviews and we will happily add you to the blog.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Recently Read...

I have been busily reading and have a long list that I hope to ration out. OK, so a lot of them were picture books, new stuff in the IMC... I will tell you all about my delirious descent into romantic novels in a later post, I feel a little swoon coming on.

Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett. A novel in seven words... and four of them are in the title. Cute, whimsical, sure to make a child smile.

At Night by Jonathan Bean. A tale of a little girl who can't sleep at night, lovely art work, and I liked the images of her mother watching out for her. Reminded me a little of Tar Beach.

The Arrival by Shaun Tan. An excellent graphic novel, mysterious and evocative. An immigrant (from where?) leaves his family and comes to America maybe? The artwork is off the hook... check it out, literally.

The Frog Who Wanted to See the Sea by Guy Billout.
After an adventurous trip to the wide, wide sea, a little frog decides that there is no place like home, goes back to her little pond, and two weeks later takes off for real (my favorite part).

Emma Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree by Lauren Tarshis.
Emma Jean is a unique, intelligent, detached little girl who attempts to set things right in the social morass of the seventh grade. Enjoyable.

A Week in the Woods by Andrew Clements. Uber rich kid, neglected by his parents, makes a bad impression on his new rural school and then tries to correct his course. Survival elements involve a class trip, getting lost, etc. Hatchet fans might like this, but it lacks the thrill of that book's fast-paced action. The hero buys $1,100 worth of survival equipment online... I didn't feel the suspense of his dilemma.

I Am Not Joey Pigza by Jack Gantos. Joey Pigza, a well drawn character with ADD, must adapt when his errant father returns with a new identity and new plans for the family. Poor Joey... and I mean that, it's sad to me, the grownups in his life are a bunch of jerks.

Ask.... Not!

I was flummoxed to read that search engine Ask might be closing its doors after I have invested some time in extolling its virtues, aiming to solely target the Hillary Clinton demographic, and generally giving up the ship. I guess we should have realized they were packing it in when they fired the butler. Admittedly, Ask does not have the reach of what someone recently referred to as the almighty G but it offers some unique features and a clear, clean set of results, clustered for your viewing enjoyment. And walking directions. Now they are saying they are not withdrawing from the field completely but will only be targeting their core users. I know you didn't ask me, Ask, but I wish you would reconsider before sealing the niche.

In other search engine news, try these from AltSearchEngines...
  • Search message boards with Dipiti.... this should be very useful. I am always finding computer troubleshooting solutions on message boards.
  • Drastic Deals, search for coupons
  • Pizza? Beer? Wine? What's not to like in the top 10 food search engines?

Monday, March 03, 2008

Recently Read by Kathy Frampton...

I just read Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale. It's a young adult romance/fantasy based on the the Grimm fairy tale, "Maid Maleen" (read it here). I was just captivated by this book. The story is about Dashti who is an orphan maid to Lady Saren. They are sealed up in a tower by Saren's father because she refuses to marry the man her father has chosen for her. The book is a diary written by the maid, and it narrates the story of their imprisonment, escape, survival, and deception and eventually leads to an extremely satisfying ending. It also documents the changing relationship of Dashti and Saren which slowly grows from servant to friend to sister. This is a fast read, but it will stay with you for a long time.....

My Recently Read

I just finished Arthur Simon's How Much is Enough? It asks if our consumer culture has stunted both our compassion and our ability to preserve the world's resources by focusing our attention on "dying with the most toys." Simon, the brother of the late Senator, Paul Simon, has dedicated his life's work to erasing hunger. His worldview is unapologetically Christian, and he challenges his readers to revolutionize their thinking and work to stay "behind the Joneses." It gave me a lot of food for thought. I've been struggling with the same questions myself, and the insights herein hit the spot. Simon draws on the teachings of many I respect--Deitrich Bonhoeffer, Ron Sider, Richard Foster--and, first and foremost, Jesus--and presents a compelling argument that less is more and a challenge to reexamine our priorities.

Come Blog With Me!

I would like to invite all interested parties... students, staff, faculty, administration, community members, passing strangers... to share your love of books and reading on our blog. I hope you may have read some of the past "Recently Read" postings and that's what we are looking for... a short review, a rave, a rant, a brief paragraph. Any type of book is welcome! If you would like to contribute, please contact me and I will post your response. Maybe we could even birth a brand new blog for book lovers!