Throwback Thursday: Capitol Avenue looking West, Omaha, Nebraska

Postcard of Capitol Avenue looking West, Omaha, Nebraska.  Approximate date early 1900’s.

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What’s Sally Reading?

School Library Journal’s Best Books 2016

Every year the editors of School Library Journal announce their choices of the best books published that year.  A total of 66 titles have been honored this year and are listed on this page.  Divided into five lists the categories are: Picture Books (17 titles), Chapter Books (2 titles), Middle Grade (14 titles), Young Adult (15 titles), Nonfiction (18 titles).

Once you click on one of the categories you will see a slide show of the titles. Scroll down to find a form to fill out in order to download a printable PDF version of the full list. There is also an “Other Bests” link on the right side of the screen which contains a print list of eight additional categories, such as “Top 10 Graphic Novels,” “Top 10 Latinx” (a new gender-neutral term to include Latina and Latino) titles, and “Top 10 Apps.” I hope you can find some time to explore these pages.

One of the titles included on the School Library Journal’s “Best Books 2016,” Middle Grade list is Makoons by Louise Erdrich (The Birchbark House series, Bk 5).  Continuing the story of an Ojibwe family, this title focuses on Makoons, twin brother of Chickadee, both of whom are determined to succeed as buffalo hunters. Makoons has a vision that shakes him to his core.  Will his family be able to handle the coming challenge?  This series has been widely praised and has appeared on numerous “best” lists. Makoons is intended for grades 4-6.

The first book in the series, The Birchbark House, was published in May of 1999.  Following it are: The Game of Silence (Bk 2) which received the Scott O’Dell Historical Fiction Award, The Porcupine Year (Bk 3), Chickadee (Bk 4) which also received the Scott O’Dell Historical Fiction Award, and, of course, Makoons.

(The Nebraska Library Commission receives free copies of children’s and young adult books for review from a number of publishers. After review, the books are distributed free, via the Regional Library Systems, to Nebraska school and public libraries.)

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NCompass Live: #1lib1ref: a Citation as a Gateway into Librarianship on Wikipedia

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘#1lib1ref: a Citation as a Gateway into Librarianship on Wikipedia’, on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

Wikipedia is a first stop for researchers: let’s make it better! The Wikipedia Library Team at the Wikimedia Foundation are embarking on a second year of the #1lib1ref campaign, which will run January 15 through February 3, 2017 and coincides with Wikipedia’s birthday. During #1lib1ref (One Librarian, One Reference) librarians each add one reference to Wikipedia. These citations to reliable sources will benefit Wikipedia readers worldwide.

Alex Stinson, GLAM-Wiki (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums) Strategist at the Wikimedia Foundation, and Wiki-librarians Phoebe Ayers (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Kelly Doyle (Wikipedian in Residence for Gender Equity, West Virginia University Libraries), Merrilee Proffitt (OCLC Research), and Jessamyn West (Vermont librarian and technologist) will discuss what it means as libraries to be involved in Wikipedia and show how you can contribute to #1lib1ref.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Feb. 1 – EGAD! Bed Bugs in the Library?
  • Feb. 8 – A New Standard for Public Service Measures for Archives & Special Collections
  • Feb. 22 – Metadata Makeover: Transforming Omaha Public Library’s Digital Collections

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Friday Reads: The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami

https://pics.librarything.com/picsizes/fe/c5/fec559bdd73040d59712b726a77434f414f4141.jpgBecause Haruki Murakami’s birthday was yesterday, and because this is a library blog, this week I’ve chosen to write about The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami. While this is available as an audio book, I must recommend the Knopf print edition if you are able to read that instead. The book design is by Chip Kidd, and it’s lovely. The cover alone references the narrative in several creative ways, and the illustrations within the book are plentiful and thoughtful.

The art design struck me even more as a vehicle for the story, a vehicle almost approaching a translation of the story, because of a recent article about Murakami. If you’re interested in Murakami, you should read “The Murakami Effect” by Stephen Snyder, which appeared on Literary Hub on 01/04/2017. You may agree or disagree with the writer’s arguments (here’s a clue to its contents: the subtitle is “On the Homogenizing Dangers of Easily Translated Literature”), but reading a critique of the translation of Murakami’s work does give you an insight into how the author structures his works. Murakami does not write about complicated ideas as much as he juxtaposes unexpected, easily visualized entities and actions, which allow the reader to fill in the complicated ideas themselves, around those entities and actions. This happens to make him very easy to translate—or, he writes this way because it’s easy to translate, according to Snyder.

I have more of an appreciation for Murakami after reading the Lithub article, which may not have been the author’s intent. Snyder attempts to take some wind out of the literary sails of Murakami’s reputation, comparing him to other Japanese writers (like Minae Mizumura, whom you might want to learn more about) and finding him, in the end, pop.

But I like pop. Murakami is nuanced enough to be quality while being accessible. And letting the reader draw some conclusions is one of my favorite things that an author can do—I love this about Flannery O’Connor, for example. It is important, though, not to take Murakami’s work as any sort of object lesson about Japanese life, just as we can’t expect to learn all we need to know about the South from O’Connor. This is another point in Snyder’s article—how Americans see Murakami’s writing as synecdochical for all things Japanese, overwriting reality with a magic key they think they learned from some magical realist novels. Readers need to try to be smarter than that, and I think we can be.

The Strange Library is a quick read—for a less marketable author, this would have just been a short story in a magazine. So hipster grad students won’t be able to carry it around as long as they can carry around their copies of 1Q84… but it’s a good introduction to Murakami if you’ve been interested and yet haven’t taken the leap. And you know you want to read a book called The Strange Library. And yes, that’s all I’m going to tell you about the actual text.

Fun facts about Haruki Murakami: not related to writer Ryu Murakami (whom I recommend if you want something grittier) or artist Takashi Murakami (if you want something even more pop). And if there’s anything more precious, predictable, and yet still enjoyable, than a McSweeney’s humor piece about Haruki Murakami, I don’t know what it would be, so here that is.

Murakami, Haruki, and Ted Goossen. The Strange Library: 107. , 2014. Print.

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Throwback Thursday: Auditorium, Omaha, Nebraska

Postcard of the Omaha, Nebraska Auditorium.  Approximate date early 1900’s.

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Governor Ricketts Proclaims 2017 One Book One Nebraska: Black Elk Speaks

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 11, 2017

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Rod Wagner
402-471-4001
800-307-2665

Governor Ricketts Proclaims 2017 One Book One Nebraska: Black Elk Speaks

On Jan. 9, 2017 Governor Pete Ricketts signed a proclamation honoring 2017 One Book One Nebraska: Black Elk Speaks by John G. Neihardt. In this year people across Nebraska are encouraged to read this novel. The story of the Oglala Lakota visionary and healer Nicholas Black Elk (1863-1950) and his people, offers readers much more than a glimpse of a vanished time. Black Elk’s searing visions of the unity of Humanity and Earth, conveyed by John G. Neihardt, have made this book a classic that crosses multiple genres and generations. The 2017 One Book One Nebraska selection is among 150 books chosen to highlight the 150th year celebration of Nebraska’s statehood. Rod Wagner, Director of the Nebraska Library Commission, presented the governor with a copy of the book. “The John G. Neihardt Foundation and State Historic Site in Bancroft is honored to take part in sharing this story, as well as our heritage and history, together with Nebraskan readers and beyond,” said Amy Kucera, Executive Director at the John G. Neihardt State Historic Site. “This transcendent tale is a true gift – created from a remarkable past so we might better understand the present, it continues to inform and inspire the future as each generation takes its turn through the pages.”

Photos of the proclamation-signing ceremony are available online.

The One Book One Nebraska reading program is entering its thirteenth year and is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Library Commission, John G. Neihardt Foundation & Nebraska State Historical Society, University of Nebraska Press, Humanities Nebraska, and Nebraska libraries and regional library systems. It encourages Nebraskans across the state to read and discuss one book, chosen from books written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. Libraries across Nebraska will join other literary and cultural organizations in planning book discussions, activities, and events to encourage Nebraskans to read and discuss this book. Support materials to assist with local reading/discussion activities are available on the 2017 One Book One Nebraska web page. Updates and activity listings will be posted there and on the NCB Facebook page.

The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book, supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the Nebraska Library Commission.

As Nebraska’s state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services-“bringing together people and information.”
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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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Nebraska Statehood Stamp

As part of the celebration of the 150th anniversary of Nebraska Statehood, the United States Postal Service will issue this stamp on March 1, 2017, in Lincoln. Known for agriculture, Nebraska (the Cornhusker State), became the 37th state on March 1, 1867. Nebraska photographer Michael Forsberg set up among prairie grasses on the riverbank between the small cities of Grand Island and Kearney to capture the image shown on the stamp. In the photograph, sandhill cranes fly low to scout for shelter from nighttime predators. This mid-migratory rest for half a million birds along the Platte River is unique to Nebraska. Forsberg captured this image as winter thawed into spring around the year 2000. USPS Art Director Derry Noyes designed the stamp using Forsberg’s existing photograph.

The 5-cent stamp commemorating the 100th anniversary of Nebraska statehood was first placed on sale at Lincoln, Nebraska, on July 29, 1967.

Julian K. Billings of Omaha, Nebraska, designed the stamp. An ear of yellow corn with its green husk is the background against which the artist placed a reddish-brown Hereford cow. Yellow and green were printed offset; brown was applied by the Giori press. It was issued in panes of fifty and was authorized for an initial printing of 120 million.

 

For those interested in other statehood stamps issued by the United States Postal Service, you can visit their website.

 

 

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What’s Up Doc? New State Agency Publications at the Nebraska Library Commission

New state agency publications have been received at the Nebraska Library Commission for December 2016.  Included are titles from the Nebraska Courts, the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, the Nebraska Legislature, and the Nebraska Public Employees Retirement System, to name a few.

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NCompass Live: Library Improvement Grants for 2017

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘Library Improvement Grants for 2017’, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

Do you have a program or project you would like to see funded? Are you considering applying for an upcoming Nebraska Library Commission grant to support this project? Join Richard Miller, NLC Library Development Director, as he provides a grant information session about the Nebraska Library Commission’s Library Improvement Grants for 2017. The session will be an overview of the grant, including grant priorities, eligibility requirements, the application process, and deadlines. Nebraska accredited public libraries and certain state-run institutional libraries will be particularly interested in this presentation.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 18 – #1lib1ref: a Citation as a Gateway into Librarianship on Wikipedia
  • Feb. 1 – EGAD! Bed Bugs in the Library?
  • Feb. 8 – A New Standard for Public Service Measures for Archives & Special Collections

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Friday Reads: Star Wars: Bloodline

I am a member of the original Star Wars trilogy generation. My parents took me and my sister to see Star Wars in the theater in 1977, before it was IV, before it had a subtitle.

Along with all fans, I was devastated by the sudden death of Carrie Fisher. Her portrayal of the strong, independent, powerful rebel, Princess Leia, was an inspiration to pre-teen me.

From their first encounter, when I saw Leia stand up to the hulking Darth Vader, I was hooked. So, when I heard that a new Star Wars book was coming out last year that focused on Leia, I had to have it. And I wasn’t disappointed.

Star Wars: Bloodline, by Claudia Gray, is part of the new series of novels that are being published in conjunction with the new films and TV shows.

When Disney purchased Lucasfilm in 2012, all of the Star Wars books and comics that had been previously written were declared non-canon by Disney, meaning that those stories were no longer the history of the Star Wars world. Instead, Disney is publishing new books that will bring the storytelling in the new movies into continuity with the older ones.

Bloodline takes place between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. It is a fast-paced novel, full of espionage, planet jumping, and clandestine missions. Yes, the Rebellion defeated the Empire at the end of Return of the Jedi. But unfortunately, that did not bring peace to the galaxy. Politics and in-fighting is undermining the New Republic Senate, of which Leia is a member. But, her investigations into criminal activities related to the problems in the Senate lead her to determine that something much bigger is going on.

In addition to being an engrossing story about Senator Leia and her young team of followers as they track down this new threat to the Republic, Bloodline provides some important context for The Force Awakens and future films. It reveals the beginnings of the formation of the Resistance and the origins of the First Order.

And you’ll also discover where Leia earned the awesome title ‘Huttslayer’. Killing a crime lord with the chain keeping you his slave can earn you big points with certain parties.

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Computers in Libraries Conference (March 28-30) Discount

The Nebraska Library Commission is offering a group discount to all Nebraska librarians who attend the Computers in Libraries 2017 conference. This year it will be held at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City, Arlington, VA, on March 28-30, 2017. Detailed information about the conference can be found on the conference web page.

This year a new pass type is being introduced that includes workshops. This new pass, the Gold Pass, is being offered as part of the group discount at the rate of $589 (regular rate is $789).

The Full 3-day Pass will be $329 (regular rate is $549). No discount rates are available for the preconference seminars and workshops, unless purchased as part of a Gold Pass.)

In addition, discount prices of $599 (regularly $749) on the Library Leaders Summit (includes all three days of CIL), and $119 (regularly $209) on the Internet@Schools Track are also available.

To receive the discount you will need to register online using this link. Discounted rates should appear on the registration form. If you don’t see discounted rates on the form, please contact Susan Knisely for assistance.

The registration deadline is February 24 to receive the discounted rates.

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Throwback Thursday: Arbor Lodge, State Park

Postcard of Arbor Lodge, State Park, Nebraska City, Nebraska.  Approximate date early 1900’s.

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NCompass Live: Begin With Books: An Early Literacy Partnership

Join us for the first NCompass Live of 2017, ‘Begin With Books: An Early Literacy Partnership’, on Wednesday, Jan. 4, 10:00-11:00 am Central Time.

Lincoln City Libraries has worked with the City/County Health Department to encourage early literacy among the low income clients they serve by providing children with free books when they come for their immunization appointments. We also provide books for the clinic waiting room and adult volunteer readers on busy clinic mornings. Find out how to recreate this program in your community, using medical homes to teach young children and their parents about the importance of early literacy. Provider education, literacy handouts, and links back to the library will be discussed.

Presenter: Vicki Wood, Lincoln City Libraries.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 11 – Library Improvement Grants for 2017
  • Jan. 18 – #1lib1ref: a Citation as a Gateway into Librarianship on Wikipedia
  • Feb. 1 – EGAD! Bed Bugs in the Library?

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Friday Reads: All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook by Leslie Connor

Perry, age 11, was born and has lived all his life with his mother in the fictional Blue River Co-ed Correctional Facility in Surprise, Nebraska, thanks to the current warden pretending he isn’t there. Then the new district attorney, Tom VanLeer, living in a nearby town, discovers his existence and “rescues” him from his mother and friends by bringing him home and becoming his foster family with his wife and his step-daughter, Zoey.  Zoey is Perry’s best friend at school.

For his class project, Perry decides to write the story of several inmates, who are his friends, and who agree to be interviewed. Regret for what they, including Perry’s mother Jessica, had done and how they have changed and are working toward parole, staying positive as much as possible, all send a different message than one might expect from prisoners. There are a few negative people incarcerated there, and Perry keeps his distance from them.

District Attorney Tom VanLeer is certain his approach is the right one, even as he delays Jessica’s parole hearing, believing she is guilty of making her son suffer in prison. Zoey finds some of her stepfather’s viewpoints and habits condescending and irritating. She and Perry also find their new situation, as foster brother and sister, rather problematic.

Perry is a wonderful character, with a positive viewpoint and an understandable confusion about things he has never encountered before, such as how to make the bathtub become a shower. His upbringing in the correctional facility has prepared him to give others a chance, and to challenge Tom VanLeer on his misconceptions. Other characters are well-developed and offer additional viewpoints as to how things can go terribly wrong and hopefully be forgiven. A terrific choice for grades 5-8 as well as adults.

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End-of-Term (EOT) Government Website Harvest Enlists Librarians, Educators, Students

As the United States—and the world—prepare for the January 20, 2017 presidential inauguration, libraries, institutions, and citizens are joining forces to identify federal government websites to be captured and saved in the End of Term (EOT) Web Archive.

The archive currently holds government web content from the administration changes of 2008 and 2012, and in July resumed collection efforts for EOT 2016 content. Government document and subject experts have been joined by librarians, academics, political and social science researchers, educators and their students, and other volunteer nominators in semester-long efforts and all-day “nominatathons” to identify URLs that are then submitted for inclusion in the EOT Archive. Those that are in-scope and not duplicates are assigned a weighted score by project specialists and given a priority level for web crawling.

A collaboration between the Library of Congress (LC), California Digital Library (CDL), University of North Texas (UNT) Libraries, Internet Archive (IA), George Washington University Libraries, Stanford University Libraries, and the U.S. Government Publishing Office, the EOT Presidential Harvest 2016 preserves federal government websites (.gov, .mil, etc.) from the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government. According to the EOT Harvest website, the archive is “intended to document federal agencies’ presence on the World Wide Web during the transition of Presidential administrations and to enhance the existing collections of the partner institutions.” The public access copy of the archive is kept at IA; LC holds a preservation copy, and an additional copy is held at UNT for data analysis.

COLLABORATIVE WEB PRESERVATION

The idea for the partnership was born at the International Internet Preservation Consortium (IIPC) meeting in Canberra, Australia, in summer 2008.

“We had just found out that the National Archives was not going to do their dot-gov crawl that they had done in 2004,” explained LC digital library project manager Abbie Grotke. “A number of us sitting around the room at the IIPC meeting who were already collecting government material in one way or another at our own institutions said, ‘Well, let’s do this together collaboratively.’ And one of the big goals of that was to share a copy of the data among all the partners.”

The CDL, IA, LC, UNT, and GPO—all members of IIPC and partners in the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP)—decided to join forces to document changes to government websites during the administration change from George W. Bush to Barack Obama. “Digital government information is considered at-risk, with an estimated life span of 44 days for a website,” noted NDIIPP director of program management Martha Anderson in a press release at the time. “This collection will provide an historical record of value to the American people.”

Several of the organizations were already active in preserving government web content. LC has preserved congressional websites on a monthly basis since December 2003. UNT Libraries, as part of the GPO’s Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), created its CyberCemetery in 1997 to capture and provide access to the websites and publications of defunct U.S. government agencies and commissions.

While organizations such as FDLP have focused on collecting, preserving, and providing access to printed publications, they do not have the infrastructure to archive digital material. Government document librarians across the country had for some time been aware of the need for an organized web collection effort.

“I’ve been really active for ten years at least trying to move the documents community towards collecting and preserving digital government information,” Stanford University U.S. government information librarian James R. Jacobs, one of the original participants, told LJ. Jacobs’s website, Free Government Information, has been supporting the preservation of digital government material for more than a dozen years.

HARVESTING HISTORY

Each partner contributed to aspects of the new project, from organization to application development. The nomination tool, a simple front-end interface designed to identify, prioritize, and describe the thousands of government web hosts, was built by UNT. The content collection was performed with the open-source Heritrix web crawler, developed by IA with support from IIPC. In order to aggregate EOT content, LC developed BagIt Library, an open source Java large-scale data transfer tool, as well as a desktop version, Bagger.

Beginning in August 2008, IA began a broad crawl of government sites, supplemented with crawls by the other project partners. The URLs were collected in December 2008, and again after the January 2009 inauguration. Final comprehensive crawls were performed in spring and fall 2009 to document any final changes. Ultimately, each partner transferred their collected content to a single consolidated archive. Metadata and thumbnail images were generated by IA’s in-house tools, with CDL providing input on Dublin Core format. Once the data transfer was complete, in mid-2010, a total of 15.9 terabytes of data had been collected.

In November 2011, the EOT Harvest resumed to document changes between Obama’s two terms—this time with the help of LIS students.

After reading a post about the project on LC’s blog about the 2012 EOT Harvest, Debbie Rabina, a professor at New York’s Pratt Institute School of Information, thought that it would be a good project for students in her Government Information Sources class. She contacted Grotke, and the two developed a plan for Rabina’s students to identify government social media sites as a semester-long project.

The class used government directories to search each agency for social media accounts, such as the U.S. Government Manual and the A-Z agency list available on USA.gov. They eventually nominated some 1,500 accounts found on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, Pinterest, GitHub, Foursquare, and others. Eventually, all 2012 EOT Harvest partners captured some 21 terabytes of data.

MOBILIZING IN 2016

Four years later, in the wake of the 2016 election, Rabina felt the need to further expand the harvesting efforts’ reach. “I was trying to think about what I could do as a librarian,” she told LJ. Drawing on her previous experience with the EOT Harvest, she said, “I thought this would be a good way for me to do something.”

Rabina reached out to Grotke and Jacobs, as well as librarians from local New York organizations. The New York Academy of Medicine (NYAM) was to be the host of the 18th International Conference on Grey Literature—published material produced outside of commercial or academic publishing, which is often not easily accessible—from November 28–29, and Rabina proposed that it also host an EOT nominating session that week.

On December 1, ten volunteers at gathered at NYAM library to spend an afternoon identifying URLs. Rabina provided a handout with instructions for the nomination process—although it is relatively straightforward, certain kinds of content, such as PDFs or FTP (file transfer protocol), are not readily crawlable by Heritrix and need to be traced back to an originating http or https URL.

Rabina’s handout also identified areas for participants to explore, mainly subdomains of science.gov, which may be most at risk of changing after the transition; when new reports are commissioned, for example, there is no requirement to save older ones. “The law has different levels of requirements for preservation, and for maintaining versions, for different types of government information,” explained Rabina. “The ones that are afforded the most protections for preservation and retention are things from the legislative branch, like our laws and bills and budget. But the stuff that comes from the agencies… like EPA reports about the level of water toxins in New Jersey, a lot of that just isn’t retained and gets lost.”

Especially with new agency heads in a new administration, she added, “their own vision can be anything from ‘I don’t believe in global warming’ to ‘I just want to update this website because it’s ugly, so let’s throw it all out.’”

In addition, noted Jacobs, “Government agencies change their content management systems all the time. You might have a link to a document or webpage that you like or want to use for your research or have an interest in, and that URL could change.”

THIS YEAR’S CROP

The 2016 harvest is projected to be the largest yet.

“The first thing to stress is that it’s not coming out of any sort of paranoia about the new administration, necessarily,” Jacobs told LJ. “This is our third go-around. We’re basically focusing on the dot-gov, dot-mil internet domain, and trying to collect as much information from those domains as we can in order to put a marker there for every four years.”

Groups at other institutions, including Simmons College and Brandeis University in Massachusetts and the University of Toronto, have also expressed interest in convening nominatathons. Rabina has put together a new handout for interested participants, with an eye to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, OSHA, NASA, and the Transportation Research Board. “We’re focusing on areas where we feel that there will be leaders who will bring another vision,” Rabina told LJ, “All of the science and the environment stuff. As far as I’m concerned, Department of Defense is kind of my last priority to get to.”

The EOT Archive has asked for particular assistance in identifying Judicial Branch websites; important content or subdomains on very large websites, such as NASA.gov, that might be related to current presidential policies; and government content on non-government domains, such as .com or .edu.

The nomination tool allows users to submit URLs for inclusion and lets the EOT Archive filter out duplicates. In-scope web pages include those of federal government websites and social media accounts—particularly those that may change significantly or disappear during the transition. Local or state government websites, and any non-government sites including news sites and those documenting the U.S. elections, are out of the EOT Harvest scope. Each URL submitted is assigned a weighted score by project specialists, according to whether it is in or out of scope and its priority for crawling.

Volunteers are asked to submit some simple metadata, including the nominated site’s title, agency, branch, and comments. While these are not required, they help identify resources for future reference. A bookmarklet is available for Firefox, Google Chrome, and Internet Explorer on the EOT nomination tool website. Nominators can also submit via a simple Google form.

The Internet Archive will perform a comprehensive crawl across the entire .gov domain, supplemented by in-depth crawls by partners and volunteers based on the submitted lists of URLs. “We also ramp up our own collecting of government websites during this time to share with the project,” noted LC’s Grotke. “We’re already collecting house and senate sites, legislative branch content, some executive branch content…. We’re getting a little bit more in-depth coverage before and after inauguration day.”

NOMINATIONS WELCOME

Anyone interested in helping nominate websites for collection can email the EOT team at uc3@ucop.edu, or consult the EOT Web Archive site for more information.

“We would welcome any nominations of federal government websites,” said Grotke. “Nominate sites you feel are important or most at risk of disappearing or changing. We recommend including both top level (e.g. epa.gov) as well as subdomains (nepis.epa.gov). You might want to pick a topic to focus on, but we’re happy to accept any and all nominations you come up with. One way you could do this is to do searches for topic(s) of interest and include the .gov search parameter (“environment site:*.gov”). That will only search .gov domain for that keyword and you’ll quickly find the government sites of interest to you. Don’t worry about whether your nominated site has already been nominated. We’ll de-duplicate our list of seeds.”

She added, “This time around we’re really excited by all the community engagement like [Rabina’s] events she’s holding in New York…and also there have been these self-organizing groups,” Grotke told LJ. “They’re just sort of emerging with communities…that are concerned about the subject matter or just interested in the project and nominating websites.”

Reprinted from Library Journal / Library Hotline, by Lisa Peet, December 13, 2016.

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Throwback Thursday: Wesleyan University

wesleyan

Postcard of Wesleyan University, University Place, Lincoln, Nebraska.  Approximate date early 1900’s.

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E-rate: What’s New for 2017? – Recording now available

The recording of the E-rate: What’s New for 2017? online session is now available.

What is E-rate? How can my public library benefit from E-rate? How do I apply for E-rate?

E-rate is a federal program that provides discounts to schools and public libraries on Telecommunications, Internet access, and Internal Connections costs in order to make these services more affordable. There have been some big changes to E-rate since USAC launched the E-Rate Productivity Center(EPC) last year. This new online portal is the main point of entry for all future E-rate interactions. With your organizational account you can now use EPC to file forms, track your application status, communicate with USAC, and more.

What does your public library need to know to use this new E-rate portal? In this workshop, Christa (Burns) Porter, Nebraska’s State E-rate Coordinator for Public Libraries, will first cover the basics of the E-rate program and then show you how to access and use your account in EPC to submit your Funding Year 2017 E-rate application.

If you have any questions or need any assistance with your E-rate forms, visit the NLC E-rate webpage or please contact Christa (Burns) Porter, 800-307-2665, 402-471-3107.

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NCompass Live: Best New Teen Books of 2016

Join us for next week’s NCompass Live, ‘Best New Teen Books of 2016’, on Wednesday, Dec. 28, 10:00-11:00 am Central Time.

Sally Snyder, Nebraska Library Commission’s Coordinator of Children and Young Adult Library Service, and Jill Annis, Librarian at Elkhorn (NE) Grandview Middle School, will give brief book talks on new titles that could be good additions to your library’s collection. Titles for middle and high school ages will be included.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Jan. 4 – Begin With Books: An Early Literacy Partnership
  • Jan. 11 – Library Improvement Grants for 2017
  • Jan. 18 – #1lib1ref: a Citation as a Gateway into Librarianship on Wikipedia
  • Feb. 1 – EGAD! Bed Bugs in the Library?

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Friday Reads: The Fireman by Joe Hill

A fast-moving plague has set the world ablaze, quite literally. The “Dragonscale” spore marks its hosts with intricate tattoo-like patterns, which just happen to also cause them to spontaneously combust. Whole cities watch in terrors as their inhabitants burn to death, no cure in sight. To protect themselves, some citizens band together into “cremation squads” and hunt down those carrying the disease.

Before the local hospital ignited, Nurse Harper cared for the infected in her New Hampshire town. She and her husband Jakob made a pact to kill themselves if they ever caught the spore. Now Harper’s on the run from the cremation squads and Jakob, having discovered her own dragonscale markings… and her pregnancy.

This is the second book by Joe Hill I’ve read, the first being NOS4A2 (which I loved). It lived up to my expectations, and I will seek out more of his work. It wasn’t until I finished this book that I realized that Joe is the son of Stephen King, writing under a pseudonym so that his writing could stand on its own merit (which it does). If you’re in the mood for a fast-paced horror/thriller novel, this is it!

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Throwback Thursday: Lindell Hotel

lindell-hotel

Postcard of Lindell Hotel, Lincoln, Nebraska.  Approximate date early 1900’s.

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