D-Lib Magazine
The Magazine of Digital Library Research

I N   B R I E F

July/August 2010


Applications Are Currently Being Accepted for the 2011 Access to Learning Award

Contributed by:
Steve Bergen
ATLA Administrator
Access to Learning Award
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is currently accepting applications to its 2011 Access to Learning Award (ATLA), which recognizes the innovative efforts of public libraries and similar institutions outside the United States to connect people to information and opportunities through free access to computers and the Internet. The award is given by Global Libraries, an initiative of the foundation's Global Development Program. The recipient of the Access to Learning Award will receive $1 million (U.S.).

Computers and the Internet are powerful tools that provide opportunities for people to improve their social and economic well-being. Worldwide, just one person in six has access to the Internet. This means that more than five billion people miss out on chances to pursue education and employment, access government services, learn about valuable health information, conduct business online, and exchange information and ideas. The Access to Learning Award encourages new, innovative ways to provide computer and Internet services to people without access, and promotes greater development of public access technology programs around the world.

The Access to Learning Award honors innovative organizations that are opening a world of online information to people in need. The foundation's Global Libraries initiative invites applications from libraries and similar organizations outside the United States that have created new ways to offer these key services:

  • Free public access to computers and the Internet.
  • Public training to assist users in accessing online information that can help improve their lives.
  • Technology training for library staff.
  • Outreach to underserved communities.

Please note:

  • Applications are open to institutions outside the United States that are working with disadvantaged communities.
  • To be eligible, the applying institution must allow all members of the public to use computers and the Internet free of charge in a community space.

Applications for the 2011 Access to Learning Award must be submitted via an online submission process by September 30, 2010. The application form is available only in English and must be completed in English to be eligible for consideration. However, while applications must be submitted in English, the foundation does offer informational brochures in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish. You may find these and additional information on eligibility requirements and the process of selection at http://www.gatesfoundation.org/ATLA.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the Administrator at atla@gatesfoundation.org.


ADMIRAL: A Data Management Infrastructure for Research Activities in the Life Sciences

Contributed by:
Graham Klyne
Project Manager
Oxford University

The ADMIRAL project addresses the problem that too little research data finds its way into institutional repositories or other systems for long-term preservation and access, especially data from small research groups whose acquisition is typically labour intensive. We are working closely with small research groups in the Oxford University Zoology Department to create a local filestore for their data coupled with web-based services for metadata capture, and a system for automated submission of selected datasets to the Oxford DataBank, a data repository run by the Oxford University Bodleian Libraries, for archiving and web publication with DataCite DOIs.

We seek to create a data curation environment that is easy for researchers to use as part of their normal daily activity ("sheer curation"), and which allows appropriate data and metadata to be captured from researchers as and when it is made available or is specifically required ("curation by addition").

The basis for this environment is a local shared file system overlaid by facilities for read/write HTTP access, based on common open-source software (Linux, Samba, Apache httpd, mod_dav, etc.). This provides the initial point of engagement with researchers, and offers them immediate benefits of automatic daily backup of their data, and secure file sharing with selected colleagues worldwide.

On top of the shared file system we are building web services for metadata creation, data packaging and submission to a data repository. Metadata are stored in files alongside the data, so automated submission of data and metadata can be achieved by transferring portions of the file system via a simple packaging format such as BagIt. This simple mechanism allows us to deal smoothly with a range of metadata from common cataloguing-style descriptors to research-domain-specific classifications and descriptions that are often not recognized by generic library systems. We intend that all metadata used for resource discovery will be represented as RDF, thus accessible via common Semantic Web applications and toolsets, and allowing smooth integration with existing RDF-based formats such as OAI-ORE resource maps.


FixRep: Examining Techniques and Implementations for Automated Formal Metadata Extraction

Contributed by:
Andrew Hewson and Emma Tonkin
Research Officers
Bath, United Kingdom
{a.hewson, e.tonkin}@ukoln.ac.uk

The goal of the FixRep project is, through the lens of existing software and services, to examine techniques and implementations for automated formal metadata extraction.

These include the well-known problem of metadata deposit and workflows from later in the metadata lifecycle; triage – incremental improvement of metadata through error identification and correction; and normalization, the increase of consistency for a specific purpose, such as republishing of the record as part of an overlay journal. Also being evaluated are the suitability of extracted formal metadata for purposes such as creation of metadata records, input into existing services for external subject classification or geographical localization and for reviewing resource accessibility and preservation.

The project is designed to evaluate existing tools, services and prototypes in a number of real-world contexts, including RepUK, UKOLN's managed harvesting and aggregation tool. We are also exploring the use of these tools in a number of repositories with various dominant languages. This has enabled practical evaluation of tool performance on resources making use of languages other than English. The project also examines the use of these tools for metadata consumption in structures built on metadata; in particular, the overlay journal and OAI-ORE creation workflows. We are also evaluating named entity extraction for people, places and dates, including use of some programmatic date extraction tools. The project makes use of a wide range of extraction tools, including NaCTeM web services, the GATE engine, Apache POI, PDFBox, DC-Dot, PaperBase, Data Fountains, and others.

Acknowledging that the use of automated tools can have undesirable results in some scenarios, the project is also exploring the practical, ethical and legal impact of using automated toolchains in areas that traditionally rely upon expert cataloguers or author self-deposit. We will publish a guide for service providers and services making use of metadata extraction tools.

The FixRep project is led by UKOLN at the University of Bath in collaboration with NaCTeM and Knowledge Integration; it is funded by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC). To find out more about the tools and services available, visit http://www.ukoln.ac.uk/projects/fixrep.


Opening up Education: lessons from an OTTER

Contributed by:
Samuel Nikoi
Research Associate
Beyond Distance Research Alliance, University of Leicester
Leicester, Leicestershire, United Kingdom

Openness is becoming a defining feature of 21st century education (Straub, 2008) as evident from the growing interest in Open Educational Resources (OERs) – MIT Open Courseware, OpenLearn and OER Africa. In the UK, government interest in OER can be found in the JISC/HEA initiative of 2009, which made available £5.7 million towards the development of open educational resources – full courses, complete modules, lecture notes, videos, etc. – for release unto JorumOpen under appropriate Creative Commons licenses.

OTTER (Open Transferable Technology-enabled Educational Resources) was one of the JISC/HEA funded OER projects. OTTER enabled the evaluation of systems and processes designed to support individuals, teams and departments at the University of Leicester to release high-quality open educational resources.

Key outcomes of the OTTER project were:

  • An integrated framework – CORRE – designed to support the evaluation and transformation of existing teaching and learning materials into OER
  • Research evidence from OER stakeholders – student, lecturers, librarians and senior managers on the use of OERs in teaching and learning
  • OER blog
  • University of Leicester OER website
  • A set of policies to support the release and dissemination of OERs

OERs hold a lot of promise for inclusive education and lifelong learning. Their success however depends on appropriate national policies that are favourable and responsive to the idea of "open education".


1. Straub, R., (2008). Is the World Open? Found at: http://www.elearningpapers.eu. 1 N 8. pp. 1-5. [Accessed: 19 October 2009].


The DUCKLING Project: An Overview

Contributed by:
Gabi Witthaus (Teaching Fellow in Distance Learning with Technologies) and
Ming Nie (Research Associate)
Beyond Distance Research Alliance, University of Leicester
Leicester, Leicestershire, United Kingdom

DUCKLING (Delivering University Curricula: Knowledge, Learning and INnovation Gains) is a two-year, JISC-funded research project at the Beyond Distance Research Alliance, University of Leicester. The project examines the use of three learning technologies (podcasting, Second Life and e-book readers) for enhancing the learner experience in distance education. Three online M-level programmes, the MA in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and Applied Linguistics, MSc in Occupational Psychology and Diploma/MSc in the Psychology of Work, are involved in the study.

At the start of the project, the following challenges were identified in the programmes:

  • Limited peer interaction
  • Limited variety in delivery approaches and technologies
  • Time-poor students
  • Students' lack of satisfaction with feedback
  • Limited flexibility in curriculum delivery for students who travel

An action research approach was taken and a series of pilot studies was run. The key findings are summarised below.


The Psychology course team produced 65 podcasts to support module material and to provide guidance and feedback on assignments and dissertation drafts. Students indicated that they preferred listening to the podcasts to reading the written course materials, as they found the audio materials more personal and engaging. Tutors commented that they paid more attention to giving positive feedback when using audio. Indicative evidence shows that the quality of submitted student work improved as a result of these interventions.

The virtual world, Second Life (SL)

Four Psychology students carried out a series of activities on a virtual oil rig: they first identified potential safety hazards; next, they evacuated the rig in a simulated emergency. This enabled students to experience a job-related activity that would otherwise have been too expensive or dangerous.

Six MA TESOL students individually observed English language classes at a language school in Second Life (SL), and reflected on these observations in the asynchronous discussion forum. SL proved useful as an inexpensive and flexible environment for students to participate in work-related activities: inexpensive as it used existing facilities in SL, and flexible as there were no synchronous meetings.

E-book readers

Twenty-eight Sony PRS-505 e-book readers, pre-loaded with in-house module content, were sent to students in both disciplines. Students were given guidelines for the use of the e-book readers, and were invited to describe their experience of the devices. The following benefits were noted:

  • Mobility and flexibility for students on the move
  • Savings in costs and paper
  • Making better use of time
  • Ease of use of the readers

Students indicated that their study habits were changing significantly, as they began to use the e-book reader for short periods whenever they had windows of time. They also said that the reader co-existed well with other devices (netbooks, smart phones, etc.), and that different devices were useful in different contexts.


In conclusion, indicative evidence shows that the use of podcasting, Second Life and e-book readers can significantly enhance the learning experience for work-based students on distance programmes.


BETA version of the Multilingual WorldWideScience.org Officially Launched

Contributed by:
Lorrie Apple Johnson
WorldWideScience.org Product Manager
Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI)
U.S. Department of Energy
Washington, DC USA

On June 11, 2010, Multilingual WorldWideScience.orgBETA was officially launched in Helsinki, Finland, at the International Council for Scientific and Technical Information (ICSTI) annual conference. WorldWideScience.org now provides the first-ever real-time searching and translation across globally-dispersed, multilingual scientific literature. This new capability is the result of an international public-private partnership between the WorldWideScience.org Alliance and Microsoft Research, whose translations technology has been paired with the federated searching technology of Deep Web Technologies.

Multilingual WorldWideScience.orgBETA allows users to conduct a single query of over 70 nationally-sponsored scientific databases from around the world. Results from the databases are combined, ranked by relevance, and then translated into the user's preferred language. At the time of the launch, nine languages were available (Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian), and more languages will be added in the coming months. Considering the growth in non-English scientific publishing, there is a vital need for global federated search and multilingual translations in science – in the interest of accelerating scientific discovery. The resulting benefits accrue to both English- and non-English speaking scientists alike. From the beginning, the goal behind WorldWideScience.org has been to broaden access to the world's scientific information and to facilitate the scientific discovery process. The launch of Multilingual WorldWideScience.orgBETA will open new opportunities for scientific communication worldwide.

Since its inception in 2007, WorldWideScience.org has grown from searching 12 databases in 10 countries to searching over 70 databases in 66 countries, covering more than 400 million pages of science. The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) serves as the Operating Agent for WorldWideScience.org.


Anianet Reaches Milestone

Contributed by:
Greg Tananbaum
Founder and CEO

Anianet, the professional network connecting Chinese scholars and scientists with their peers in the west, recently reached a major milestone when Dr. Yanyun Ma became the 5,000th member to join Anianet. Launched in late 2009, Anianet has become an essential tool to integrate Chinese researchers into the international community. Reaching this important landmark validates the keen interest Chinese scholars have in forging closer connections with their peers in America and Europe.

Here is how Anianet works. Chinese researchers create free English-language profiles detailing their professional accomplishments and interests, in a format that is optimized for international audiences. This allows Anianet members to raise their visibility among western editors, meeting organizers, funding agencies, laboratories, and prospective collaborators. Westerners can freely browse the Anianet directory to gain a better understanding of who is doing what within the Chinese research community.

In addition to helping members increase their international visibility, Anianet offers a variety of tools to help Chinese scholars understand what is going on in their field and in scholarly communication generally. For example, Anianet provides members with tailored content feeds, drawing from thousands of sources, detailing western grants, research partnerships, jobs, fellowships, meetings, publications, and other opportunities Additionally, the Anianet Resources Page outlines information and services that help Chinese scholars present their work and their accomplishments in the best possible manner, including tips for publishing in western journals and presenting at international meetings. In short, Anianet provides Chinese researchers with a "western base of operations" for the first time. Anianet members come from over 700 institutions, labs, hospitals, and research centers across China, and work in more than 1,200 disciplines, from aerospace engineering to zoology.

For more information about Anianet, please visit http://www.anianet.com or email info@anianet.com.


I N   T H E   N E W S

July/August 2010


The World Digital Library initiative gets further expanded

July 2, 2010 — "'Libraries, especially digital libraries, are truly at the heart of knowledge societies; they enable people to access, share and apply knowledge. UNESCO is committed to further expand universal participation in the World Digital Library (WDL) which reflects the values and priorities of our Organization' said UNESCO's Assistant Director-General of UNESCO for Communication and Information at the opening of the first official meeting of the WDL partners held in Washington, DC on June 22-23."

"The meeting elected a 7-member Executive Council, including UNESCO and the Library of Congress in their capacity as ex-officio members. In connection with this meeting the Carnegie Corporation of New York supported a conference of directors and technical staff from libraries, archives, and museums in 11 countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan – to identify important documents and collections from these countries that should be added to the WDL."

"Under the same grant, which was awarded in July 2009, the World Digital Library worked with the National Library of Uganda (NLU) to establish a Digital Conversion Center at the NLU in Kampala. This center, the first of its kind in Uganda and one of very few in sub-Saharan Africa, is enabling the National Library to digitize documents relating to the history and culture of Uganda for inclusion on its own website and on the WDL. The items digitized are from the NLU and other cooperating institutions in Uganda. Future activities planned under the grant include efforts to build capacity at libraries in South Africa so they, too can contribute collections to the WDL...."

"The World Digital Library has now 85 partners from some 55 countries. More than 10 million users worldwide have visited the WDL since its official launch in April 2009."

For more information, please see the full press release.


2010 Annual Conference Kicks Off SLA's Second Century

July 1, 2010 — "Thousands of members of the Special Libraries Association (SLA) participated in the association's 2010 Annual Conference & INFO-EXPO in New Orleans from June 13-17. Attendees were able to take advantage of hundreds of learning opportunities in areas such as mobile technology, new media, global information issues, search technologies and taxonomy. The event featured more than 250 sessions and panels, countless networking opportunities, and high-profile keynote presentations featuring political pundits James Carville and Mary Matalin and author Nicholas Carr. This year SLA also offered members who could not make the journey to New Orleans the opportunity to participate in the first-ever 3D virtual SLA Annual Conference component."

"...Virtual attendees were able to view and participate in the two general sessions as well as attend ten spotlight sessions in real time. Designed to mimic the in-person conference experience, the virtual conference platform allowed attendees to create an avatar and talk to one other as well as submit questions to the keynote speakers and session presenters. The virtual component also incorporated virtual exhibitors Economist Intelligence Unit & CEDROM-SNi, and featured the very active Twitter feed, which logged more than 5,000 tweets throughout the conference."

"Next year's conference will be held June 12-15 in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The theme for the 2011 conference is Future Ready, and the programs, sessions and panels will explore what it takes to be Future Ready in the context of three areas: driving innovation, building collaboration and adding value."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Public Library Visits, Circulation Spike While Staff Numbers Stay the Same: IMLS FY2008 Public Libraries Survey Report

June 30, 2010 — "Public library visits and circulations per capita increased almost 20 percent between FY1999 and FY2008, while the number of public librarians per 25,000 people has remained virtually the same during that same period, according to the FY2008 Public Libraries Survey (PLS) report issued by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The PLS report, which includes information on population of service areas, service outlets, library collections and services, library staff, and operating revenue and expenditures, also found that Americans made 1.5 billion visits to public libraries in FY2008, up from 1.43 billion total visits the previous year."

"More than 9,200 libraries were surveyed in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The survey had an impressive 98 percent response rate due to the cooperative efforts of the chief officers of State Library Agencies, IMLS, and the Census Bureau."

"The report includes a number of key findings that will assist the library community and local, state, and national policymakers in making decisions to better their communities."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Department of Labor Provides Guidance to Workforce Agencies on Partnering with Libraries

June 30, 2010 — "On June 29, 2010, the Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (ETA) officially encouraged its state and local workforce investment boards, state workforce agencies, and One-Stop Career Centers to partner with public libraries to extend their career and employment services to job seekers and unemployed workers. The ETA's Training and Employment Notice (TEN) cements a partnership between the ETA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) that was announced on June 25, 2010, at the American Library Association annual meeting...."

"...The TEN provides examples of partnership activities including co-locating One-Stop Career Centers and libraries; collaborating to train library staff about in-person and virtual employment and training resources available through the public workforce system; and training public workforce system staff about the value of partnering with libraries...."

"...'An estimated 3.7 million Americans have found work with support from their public libraries,' said Semmel, citing a March 2010 study conducted by the University of Washington and sponsored by IMLS and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Roberta Stevens inaugurated 2010 ALA president

June 30, 2010 — "Roberta Stevens, outreach projects and partnerships officer at the Library of Congress and National Book Festival project manager, has begun her term as 2010-2011 president of the American Library Association (ALA)."

"As ALA president, Stevens is the chief elected officer of the oldest and largest library organization in the world. Established in 1876, the American Library Association has nearly 63,000 members. Its mission is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all."

"Stevens received a bachelor's and a masters of library science (MLS) degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and a masters in English from the State University of New York at Binghamton. She also took courses in the MBA program at George Mason University. She was the first former graduate of the MLS program at Buffalo to be invited as the commencement speaker."

"Molly Raphael, former director of libraries at Multnomah County Library in Portland, Ore., today also began her term as ALA president-elect. She will assume the ALA presidency in June 2011 at the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans."

For more information, please see the full press release.


University of Maryland Scientists Develop World's Fastest Program to Find Patterns in Social Networks

June 29, 2010 — "As social networks like Facebook, Flickr, Youtube and Twitter increasingly make it possible to access appropriate information within their networks, a whole host of new applications become possible. For individuals, search engines could better differentiate 'friends' and suggest groups with more closely matched interests or concerns. Businesses could search allowed information to offer products or services better matched to customers. And national security and counter-terror analysts, with appropriate court authorization, could look for 'groups' of people within social networks that match certain characteristics."

"However, a technical obstacle to all of these is the difficulty inherent in being able to find all parts of the social network that match a given query network pattern. This essential first step (called the 'subgraph matching' step by computer scientists) is often succeeded by many other application-specific steps. The subgraph matching problem is enormously challenging and has long been known to be computationally very difficult, rising exponentially in complexity with the size of the network increases. "

"University of Maryland grad student Matthias Broecheler, Computer Science Professor V.S. Subrahmanian, and University of Calabria (Italy) Professor Andrea Pugliese have recently unveiled a new mathematically-based computer program, or algorithm, called COSI (short for 'Cloud Oriented Subgraph Identification') that will support subgraph pattern matching in very large social networks containing hundreds of millions, even billions, of links."

"In a paper that has been accepted for presentation at the 2010 Advances in Social Network Analysis and Mining conference to be held in Denmark in August, Broecheler, Pugliese and Subrahmanian leveraged a key insight – it is possible to split the social network into a set of almost independent, relatively small sub-networks, each of which is stored on a computer in a cloud computing cluster in such a way that the probability that a query pattern will need to access two nodes is kept as small as possible. Using knowledge of past queries and a complex set of calculations to compute these probabilities, their paper reports algorithms and experiments to answer social network subgraph pattern matching queries on real-world social network data with 778 million edges (which may denote relationships or connections between individuals) in less than one second. More recent results not contained in the paper are able to efficiently answer queries to social network databases containing over a billion edges."

For more information, please see the full press release.


APA announces recipient of 2010 Excellence in Librarianship Award

June 26, 2010 — "At the American Library Association Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, the American Psychological Association (APA) announced that Mr. Brian Quinn, MLIS, is the recipient of APA's 2010 Excellence in Librarianship Award for his leadership and lifetime of service to the library field."

"For over 15 years, Mr. Quinn has been a leader within his library, campus, local community, and within the library community. Currently, he serves as the Coordinator of Collection Development and Social Sciences Librarian at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX, where his colleagues recognize him as a self-motivated 'servant-scholar' who takes a proactive approach to professional library services. In addition, Mr. Quinn possesses an excellent scholarship record. With nearly 40 publications to his credit, he seeks to apply the principles of psychology to librarianship. Brian Quinn is recognized by his peers as a brilliant scholar and serves the library community with unwavering fervor. APA is pleased to present him with this year's award."

"The American Psychological Association's Excellence in Librarianship Award was created to recognize significant contributions or research within psychology and social sciences librarianship. The award, which consists of $2,500 and a commemorating plaque, was presented to Brian Quinn on Saturday, June 26, 2010 at the EBSS Research Forum, during the American Library Association Annual Meeting in Washington, DC."

For more information, please see the full press release.


NISO Announces 2010 Fall Schedule of Educational Programs

June 23, 2010 — "The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) announces its schedule of educational programs for the second half of 2010, including six webinars; free monthly open teleconferences; an in-person forum; and a joint NISO/DCMI webinar in August."

"NISO's webinars are held on the second Wednesday of each month, except July. A two-part webinar is planned for consecutive Wednesdays in September. The registration fee is per site (defined as access by one computer with an unlimited number of viewers) and registrants have access to the recorded version for one year. NASIG members may register at the NISO member rate...."

"...Free teleconferences will be held on the second Monday of every month (except July) to discuss projects underway in NISO and to provide the community with an opportunity to provide feedback and input on areas where NISO is or ought to be engaged."

"The complete fall schedule of 2010 NISO educational events...[is] available at: www.niso.org/news/events/2010/. Registration is now open for all events."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Senate Confirms New Members of IMLS Advisory Board

June 23, 2010 — "On June 22, 2010, the Senate confirmed five individuals to serve on the National Museum and Library Services Board, which advises the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) on general policy and practices and on selections for the National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The board is comprised of the IMLS director and deputy directors and 20 members of the general public with demonstrated expertise and commitment to libraries or museums."

"New board members include:

  • John Coppola, consultant on strategic planning and professional training for museums throughout Latin America and the Middle East
  • Dr. Carla Hayden, past president of the American Library Association and the current chief executive officer of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Dr. Lawrence J. Pijeaux, Jr., president and CEO of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, a multi-media facility housing exhibitions of historical events from post-World War I racial segregation to present-day racial progress
  • Winston Tabb, Sheridan Dean of University Libraries and Museums at the Johns Hopkins University where he leads and coordinates the university's entire system of libraries, directs the Sheridan Libraries, and oversees the Homewood Museum and the Evergreen Museum & Library
  • Robert Wedgeworth, founding president of ProLiteracy Worldwide, the largest non-governmental adult literacy training organization in the world, until his retirement in June 2007"

For more information, please see the full press release.


Libraries report increased use of e-government, job resources; reduced operating hours

June 21, 2010 — "A new report finds America's public libraries posted gains in several key areas of technology deployment. Libraries nationwide report they've seen an increase in public use of online services, particularly to support job seeking and e-government transactions, and have made some gains in adding public computers and improving Internet connections available to patrons. However, snowballing funding cuts at state and local levels are forcing thousands of libraries to literally lock away access to these resources as they reduce operating hours."

"The national 2010 'Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study' provides data on job and career resources, as well as tracking a significant jump in e-government use. From unemployment benefits to state tax forms, more government information and services are moving online, often without a print alternative. Responding to growing demand from people for assistance using these new forms of government services, nearly 79 percent of libraries (up from 54 percent one year ago) provide assistance to patrons applying or accessing government services, according to the report released today by the American Library Association."

"...Nearly 15 percent of libraries (or roughly 2,400 locations) report reduced operating hours, with urban libraries leading the trend with nearly one-quarter reporting fewer hours in 2009. More than half (55 percent) of urban libraries report funding cuts between FY2009 and FY2010."

"Cuts come as the economic recession has placed libraries at the forefront for today's job seekers. Eighty-eight percent of libraries provide free access to job databases and other job services, and 67 percent report library staff helped patrons complete online job applications. Libraries also provide access to civil service exam materials (75 percent) and software to help patrons create resumes and other employment materials (69 percent)."

For more information, please see the full press release.


NISO Announces Six New Standard or Recommended Practice Development Projects

June 18, 2010 — "The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) has launched six new standard or recommended practice development projects in the past six months. There are now more development projects underway than at any time in NISO's history. Experts from interested and affected organizations have volunteered to participate on working groups to develop consensus standards or best practice recommendations for each of the six projects."

"The six new project working groups are:

  • E-journal Presentation & Identification – Co-chaired by Bob Boissy (Springer) and Cindy Hepfer (University of Buffalo, SUNY)
  • Improving OpenURLs Through Analytics (IOTA) – Chaired by Adam Chandler (Cornell University)
  • RFID in Libraries Revision – Co-chaired by Vinod Chachra (VTLS) and Paul Sevcik (3M)
  • Standardized Markup for Journal Articles Working Group – Co-chaired by Jeff Beck (National Library of Medicine) and B. Tommie Usdin (Mulberry Technologies)
  • NISO/NFAIS Supplemental Journal Article Materials. The business working group will be co-chaired by Linda Beebe (American Psychological Association) and Marie McVeigh (Thomson Reuters). The technical working group will be co-chaired by Dave Martinsen (American Chemical Society) and Alexander (Sasha) Schwarzman (American Geophysical Union).
  • NISO/UKSG Knowledge Bases and Related Tools (KBART) Phase 2 – Co-chaired by Sarah Pearson (University of Birmingham) and Andreas Biedenbach (Springer Science+Business Media)"

"More information about all of the active NISO working groups can be found on the workrooms webpage (www.niso.org/workrooms/)."

For more information, please see the full press release.


San Jose SLIS Awarded Federal Grant to Study Multi-Library Text Reference Collaborative

June 18, 2010 announcement from the San Jose School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) — "Use of text messaging is skyrocketing, and our nation's libraries are starting to explore new ways to tap into this increasingly popular communication platform to connect with their patrons. Dr. Lili Luo, an assistant professor with the San Jose School of Library and Information Science, will conduct the first in-depth research regarding how libraries can meet their patron's information-seeking needs via text messaging."

"Thanks to a $122,683 grant award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Luo will conduct a two-year study of how libraries can use text messaging as a platform for providing virtual reference services, as well as how they can collaboratively deliver services and expand their ability to meet patron needs during challenging economic times. Engaging a New Generation of Library Users: Exploring a Multi-Library Collaborative Model to Deliver Text Reference Service will investigate how text reference service is different from other types of virtual reference services (such as email and instant messaging) and how it can fulfill users' information needs."

"Luo will also study whether text reference provides an opportunity for libraries to engage new users, including our nation's teens – the fastest growing group of individuals using text messaging. Luo will study the rich pool of data available via InfoQuest, the nation's first large-scale collaboration by numerous libraries to provide text reference services. Launched in July 2009 by Alliance Library System, today more than 60 libraries from multiple states participate in InfoQuest. They include a wide array of library types, including urban, suburban, and rural libraries, small and large libraries, and public, academic, school, and law libraries. The project's goal is to learn from InfoQuest's innovative national model, gleaning new knowledge regarding how to implement, manage, and assess a collaborative text reference service model, as well as factors libraries should consider when deciding whether or not to participate in a text reference collaboration."

For information regarding this announcement, please contact Lisa Valdez at lvaldez@slis.sjsu.edu.


San Jose SLIS to Award Scholarships to American Indians and Alaska Natives

June 16, 2010 announcement from the San Jose School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) — "The San Jose School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) is partnering with the American Indian Library Association (AILA) to launch Circle of Learning – an initiative designed to recruit and support American Indians and Alaska Natives who are interested in earning a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree. The scholarship program is designed for Native students who want to earn a fully online ALA-accredited MLIS degree."

"Scholarship recipients will receive financial assistance and other support, including mentoring, career advisement, field experiences, involvement in professional conferences and workshops, and interaction with Native leaders in the profession. Because all courses are delivered fully online, students will be able to live anywhere while earning their MLIS degree."

"Circle of Learning's unique blended approach of online curriculum delivery and face-to-face social and professional interactions will help ensure that scholarship recipients receive personalized support and develop a professional network that will benefit them in the years ahead. The Circle of Learning scholarship program is made possible because of a generous grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the primary source of federal support for the nation's libraries and museums."

"The Circle of Learning advisory committee is finalizing application criteria. Details regarding eligibility for scholarships and application materials will be available on the project website by August 3, 2010. Students will need to be admitted to the School's MLIS program in order to receive scholarship funding, and the individuals selected to receive scholarships will be eligible to start receiving tuition reimbursement for courses taken during the Spring 2011 semester. For more information regarding the Circle of Learning project, including application information and deadlines, please visit the project's website at http://slisweb.sjsu.edu/circleoflearning/. For more information about SLIS and how to apply to the School's fully online MLIS program, visit http://slisweb.sjsu.edu/audience/prospective.htm."

For more information, please see the full press release.


IMLS Launches National Campaign to Promote 21st Century Skills and Community Engagement

June 16, 2010 — "The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has announced a national campaign aimed at engaging museums, libraries, and civic leaders in meeting the 21st century learning needs of their communities."

"The national campaign, Making the Learning Connection, is intended to help communities assess their needs and contribute to a shared vision for 21st century learning. It includes an eight-city workshop tour, a national contest, new online tools and resources, and a series of interactive webinars."

"The eight-city tour kicked off on June 21 at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore. The tour will provide an opportunity for museum, library, and other community leaders to discuss the 21st century learning landscape of their city and explore strategies for furthering 21st century learning goals...."

"...The Making the Learning Connection campaign is part of IMLS' continuing initiative to engage libraries and museums, community stakeholders and policymakers to meet the educational, economic, civic, and cultural needs of communities. This campaign builds upon the release of Museums, Libraries and 21st Century Skills, which provides an online self-assessment for libraries and museums to encourage a strategic approach to 21st century learning and a report for library and museum practitioners and policymakers."

For more information, please see the full press release.


IMLS Awards More Than $22.6 Million in Librarian Recruitment and Education Grants

June 15, 2010 — "The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) today awarded 38 Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grants totaling $22,623,984. These grants provide scholarships for students in master's and doctoral programs in library and information science, support the research of early career faculty in graduate schools of library and information science, and provide continuing education opportunities to enhance the skills of practitioners in libraries and archives. Some of the projects in this year's awards will help to boost libraries' efforts to help the unemployed find work; support libraries in rural communities; expand relationships between libraries, museums, and archives; and strengthen the skills of library staffs in the Pacific territories. To see a complete list of awardees and descriptions of how they intend to use their grants, please go to http://www.imls.gov/news/2010/061510_list.shtm."

"The 2010 grantees include:

  • University of Illinois - Amount: $988,543
  • Pratt Institute - Amount: $971,407
  • Palau Community College - Amount: $216,405
  • OCLC/WebJunction - Amount: $940,750
  • Nebraska Library Commission - Amount: $721,033
  • Alaska Division of Libraries, Archives, and Museums - Amount: $185,427"

"There were 110 applications to the program with requests totaling $68,242,619. The next deadline for the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program is December 15, 2010. For more information, please go to http://www.imls.gov/applicants/grants/21centuryLibrarian.shtm."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Austrian National Library and Google cooperate in digitisation

June 15, 2010 announcement from Max Kaiser, Austrian National Library — "As one of the first national libraries worldwide the Austrian National Library will digitise its complete holdings of public domain books from the 16th to the 19th century. This project will make one of the five internationally most important historical book collections available online. Also all works which are located in the Austrian National Library's famous State Hall will be digitised."

"The project – unique in its size in Austria's cultural sphere – will be carried out in a Public Private Partnership with Google. Details were announced in a press conference on 15 June 2010. In the next few years around 400.000 public domain works will be digitised. These will be made available without restrictions and free of charge via the digital library of the Austrian National Library and via Google Books. In addition users will be able to access the digital books via Europeana, the European digital library."

"The project supports one of the Austrian National Library's key strategic objectives to provide unrestricted access to its collections to the largest possible audience. In the near future users will find the digitised books in the Austrian National Library's online catalogue and will be able to access them via a single click, perform full-text searches, read them online or download the entire works. The provision of full-text search will further improve retrievability and accessibility of the works."

For more information, please see the project web site.


Biomed Central Cites Harvard as Open-Access Institution of the Year

Worldwide Honor Shared with University of Zurich and Chinese Academy of Sciences

June 10, 2010 — "BioMed Central (BMC), an international publisher of journals in science, technology, and medicine and a pioneer in open-access publishing, named Harvard University one of the world's three open-access institutions of the year. BioMed Central announced the honor at its fourth annual research awards ceremony in London on June 9."

"The annual award recognizes institutions that have done the most to show leadership in taking steps to expand access to the published results of scholarly research. This year, to reflect the global spread of open-access initiatives, BMC chose to honor Harvard together with the University of Zurich and the Chinese Academy of Sciences."

"The award to Harvard recognizes the breadth and significance of Harvard's open-access policies: "The open-access mandate introduced by Harvard's Faculty of Arts and Sciences has been extremely influential, encouraging and emboldening other US institutions including MIT, Kansas and Duke University to take similar action. In addition, a further four schools at Harvard have since gone on to introduce their own mandates. (Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard Business School, Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government).""

"In addition, BioMed Central lauds the University as 'it emphasizes the need to find sustainable alternatives to subscriptions in order cover the costs associated with peer-reviewed publication, while avoiding the need to restrict access.'"

For more information, please see the full press release.


Open access uptake for OUP journals: Five years on

June 10, 2010 — "Through the Oxford Open initiative, launched in July 2005, Oxford University Press (OUP) has experimented with open access models and has been carefully monitoring and sharing results. Today, over 90 Oxford journals are hybrid open access and six are fully open access."

"In 2009 the average uptake of the open access option for participating journals fell to 5.9%, compared with 6.7% in 2008. This reduction was due to a lower uptake amongst 11 new titles joining Oxford Open in 2009. On a like-for-like basis, the average uptake in 2009 for journals which entered the scheme prior to 2008 was stable (6.7%, compared with 6.8% in 2008)."

"Based on titles included in Oxford Open prior to 2008, by broad subject area the highest uptake continues to be in the Life Sciences (11.4% compared with 11.2% in 2008). However, there was substantial variation between individual titles; for example, Bioinformatics (31%) and HMG (20%) have seen continued growth, whilst some other life science titles have seen a reduction of 5%-10%. Medical titles have declined from 5.0% to 4.6%, whilst Humanities, Social Science, and Law continue to have a much lower uptake (2.5%). At 8.2%, Mathematics was the second largest uptake, an increase compared with 2008 (6.8%)."

For more information, please see the full press release.


UKSG and NISO Announce First Endorsers of KBART Recommended Practice

New KBART Phase II Working Group and Co-Chairs Also Revealed

June 1, 2010 — "UKSG and NISO are pleased to announce that the American Institute of Physics, Ex Libris, Serials Solutions and OCLC are the first organizations to publicly endorse the Phase I recommendations of the KBART (Knowledge Bases And Related Tools) Working Group, a joint initiative that is exploring data problems within the OpenURL supply chain. KBART's Phase I Recommended Practice (NISO RP-9-2010), published in January 2010, contains practical recommendations for the timely exchange of accurate metadata between content providers and knowledge base developers. A number of other major organizations in the scholarly information supply chain are also working towards KBART endorsement."

"All content providers, from major databases to small publishers, are encouraged to publicly endorse the KBART Recommended Practice by submitting a sample file to the KBART working group. Once the file's format and content has been reviewed and approved, and the provider has made it publicly available (in line with the recommendations), the provider will be added to a public list of endorsing providers. Knowledge base developers can endorse the KBART Recommended Practice by confirming that their systems can process KBART formatted files. In addition, a contacts registry is now available on the KBART Information Hub at http://www.uksg.org/kbart or http://www.niso.org/workrooms/kbart where content providers and knowledge base developers can register their organization's information for downloading holdings metadata."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Enhancement of ID.LOC.GOV

May 28, 2010 announcement from Rebecca Guenther, Library of Congress — "The Library of Congress is pleased to announce the enhancement of its ID.LOC.GOV web service, Authorities and Vocabularies, which provides access to Library of Congress standards and vocabularies as Linked Data. In addition to technological refinements aimed at improving the user experience, we now offer additional vocabularies:

  • Thesaurus of Graphic Materials
  • MARC Code List for Relators
  • Cryptographic Hash Functions
  • Preservation Events
  • Preservation Level Role"

"The latter three are in support of preservation and technical metadata schemes. The vocabulary data are available for bulk download. Additional vocabularies will be added in the future, including (among others) the MARC code lists for geographic areas, countries and languages and additional PREMIS controlled vocabularies."

"The Authorities and Vocabularies web service was first made available in May 2009 and offered the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), the Library's initial entry into the Linked Data movement. In part by assigning each vocabulary and each data value within it a unique resource identifier (URI), the service provides a means for machines to semantically access, use, and harvest authority and vocabulary data that adheres to W3C recommendations, such as Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS). In this way, the Authorities and Vocabularies web service also makes government data publicly and freely available in the spirit of the Open Government directive. Although the primary goal of the service is to enable machine access to Library of Congress data, a web interface serves human users searching and browsing the vocabularies."

"We are very interested to get feedback on the uses and usefulness of the service to inform ways that we might enhance it. (There is a comment form at the site.)"


DuraSpace Launches Sponsorship Program

May 20, 2010 — "DuraSpace, an independent 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, has launched its 2010 Sponsorship Program to engage leaders from university and library communities in supporting the organization's ongoing mission. DuraSpace provides open source software and services to help ensure that current and future generations have access to our collective digital heritage. DuraSpace is the home of the DSpace and Fedora open source software for digital repositories. Sponsors contribute at three levels of giving as an investment in community-driven approaches to preserving our digital heritage."

For more information, please see the full press release.


Open access options on 7 more Nature Publishing Group journals

May 19, 2010 — "Nature Publishing Group (NPG) is pleased to announce open access options for seven further journals. Twenty-five journals published by NPG now offer authors an open access option, including all 15 academic journals owned by NPG..."

"...Launched in April 2010, Nature Communications is the first Nature-branded online-only journal with an open access option. In 2009, NPG introduced open access options on twelve of its academic journals..."

"NPG's self-archiving policy ensures that authors of original research papers can comply with funder mandates for public access, regardless of which NPG journal they publish in. In addition, NPG offers a free Manuscript Deposition Service into PubMed Central and UK PubMed Central on 43 of its titles."

For more information, please see the full press release.

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