Category Archives: Uncategorized

Free Webinar Series: The Social Library

Social Library is a regular WebJunction series featuring some of the amazing work from the libraries that we follow on Facebook. It’s a great virtual tour of how libraries are using social media to connect with their communities, promote services and programs, and engage with their patrons and fans. If you’d like to see your library featured in the Social Library series, please let WebJunction know via social@webjunction.org, or find them on Facebook.

Here are the most recent entries in the Social Library series:

Social Library, Volume 104

 News / Last Modified:20 March 2018

The latest edition of our Social Library highlights innovative ways libraries are using Facebook to connect with communities. One library is circulating fishing poles and another created a video to show that yes, people still use libraries. One libra…

Social Library, Volume 103

 News / Last Modified:20 March 2018

This edition of our Social Library series presents fresh ideas from libraries truly responding to community needs. From language classes in Cree to a lactation station for mothers, and from services for local veterans to a community discussion on new…

Social Library, Volume 102

 News / Last Modified:06 March 2018

In this next edition of the Social Library, we’re showcasing a comic con focused on diversity, patron-designed library cards, libraries as creative economic development hubs, coffee-incentivized reading, and new services for health, literacy and pare…

Social Library, Volume 95

 News / Last Modified:22 February 2018

In this edition of our Social Library series we’re highlighting a pumpkin decorating contest (no carving allowed!), a library ambassador’s take on the new Austin Public Library, a makeup workshop, a 150 celebration, and a microcollege in the Brooklyn…

Social Library, Black History Month Edition

 News / Last Modified:20 February 2018

We continue the Social Library series with this special Black History Month edition, highlighting examples of ways your library can use social media to connect your community to books, programs, videos, oral histories and other resources during the m…

Social Library, Volume 100

 News / Last Modified:06 February 2018

We began our Social Library series nearly three years ago, and we’re pleased to be publishing our 100th edition today! We’ve featured 424 different libraries, representing over 60 states and countries. We have collected each of the editions into a sp…

Social Library, Volume 99

 News / Last Modified:23 January 2018

In this, the first 2018 edition of our Social Library series, we’re highlighting a fresh set of stellar examples of libraries leveraging Facebook in innovative ways. From a fun movie tie-in contest to a reading challenge, and from staff favorites to …

Social Library, Volume 98

 News / Last Modified:04 January 2018

This fresh edition of our Social Library series is guaranteed to bring a few surprises! These libraries are adding everything from lucha libre to the DMV to their offerings, and one is presenting a unique opportunity for patrons to “read away&qu…

Social Library, Volume 90

 News / Last Modified:21 December 2017

We continue our Social Library series with this latest edition featuring dogs and dinosaurs, a mobile kitchen, and some of the innovative ways libraries are using Facebook features. Thank you to all these libraries for their great work and if you’d l…

Social Library, Volume 97

 News / Last Modified:19 December 2017

This week’s edition of our Social Library series highlights posts from five libraries we follow on Facebook, with everything from tech tips to fundraising. There’s really no limit to what you can bring to social media to engage with your community. W…

Reprinted from WebJunction Crossroads : The Newsletter for Library Learning, April 4th, 2018
Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Technology, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Tax Time Help for Your Patrons

Well folks, it’s that time of year again–Tax Time!  The Nebraska Department of Revenue is not distributing forms to libraries this year, so below are some alternatives for helping your patrons.

For decades, public libraries have become unparalleled resources in their communities, far beyond their traditional, literary role. Libraries assist those who need it most by providing free Internet access, offering financial literacy classes, job training, employment assistance and more. And for decades, libraries have served as a critical resource during tax season.

Each year, more and more Americans feel as though they lack the necessary resources to confidently and correctly file their taxes on time. This is particularly true for moderate and lower-income individuals and families who are forced to work multiple jobs just to make ends meet. The question is “where is help available?”

Libraries across the country are stepping up their efforts to assist local taxpayers in filing their taxes for free. Many libraries offer in-person help, often serving as a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) location or AARP Tax-Aide site.  Here in Lincoln, VITA is offering this service at these locations, and forms can be printed from the Nebraska Department of Revenue website.

There is an option for free tax prep that libraries can provide—and with little required from already busy library staff. The next time that a local individual or family comes looking for a helping hand with tax preparation, libraries can guide them to a free online tax preparation resource—IRS Free File:

  • Through the Free File Program, those who earned $66,000 or less last year—over 70 percent of all American taxpayers—are eligible to use at least one of 12 brand-name tax preparation software to file their Federal (and in many cases, state) taxes completely free of charge. More information is available at www.irs.gov/freefile. Free File starts on January 12, 2018.
  • Free File complements local VITA programs, where people can get in-person help from IRS certified volunteers. There are over 12,000 VITA programs across the country to help people in your community maximize their refund and claim all the credits that they deserve, including the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Any individual making under $54,000 annually may qualify. More information on VITAs is available at www.irs.gov/vita. More information about AARP Tax-Aide can be found here.

With help from libraries and volunteers across the nation, we can work together to ensure that as many taxpayers as possible have access to the resources and assistance that they need to file their returns.

The Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA) hosts a website – www.taxtimeallies.org – that provides resources to inform and assist eligible taxpayers with filing their taxes including fact sheets, flyers and traditional and social media outreach tools. CCIA also encourages folks to download the IRS2Goapp on their mobile phone.

Thanks to help from libraries just like yours, we can help eligible taxpayers prepare and file their tax returns on time and free of charge.

 

District Dispatch, ALA, January 12, 2018

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Free Webinar–Money on Our Minds: How to Help Library Patrons Make Financial Choices

You are invited to participate in a webinar to learn about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)’s financial education resources on Thursday, February 22, 2018 from 2:00 to 3:00pm eastern standard time. See below for details.

Many Americans are turning to a trusted source in their communities, their local public library.  The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a federal government agency, recognizes that libraries are a powerful and trusted community resource, and has materials specifically for libraries to use to inform their patrons about financial education.  Collaborating with the CFPB makes it easy for libraries to refer your patrons to trusted sources so they can make important money decisions.

Learn more about the value provided for libraries collaborating with CFPB

You can learn more about this exciting opportunity to help empower your patrons in the financial services market through an upcoming webinar conducted by the CFPB.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

2:00-3:00 pm (Eastern Time)

Step 1:  To join the February 22nd webinar, please go to the following link at the time of the webinar:

https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join.php?i=PWXW6738308&p=7758404&t=c

(Note that this webinar link will not be live until the day of the webinar).

Step 2:  Listen to the audio by dialing 888-795-5920 and entering participant passcode 77-58-404.

Step 3: If you can’t participate on the day of the webinar, it will be recorded, and available for later viewing here:  CFPB Library Training Resources

If you have any questions about this webinar-or about CFPB’s Libraries Initiative–please contact Ken McDonnell at Kenneth.mcdonnell@cfpb.gov;

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau : consumerfinance.gov 

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | 1 Comment

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 November 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Administrative Services Division, the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality, the Nebraska Department of Transportation, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link above, or directly in the .pdf below.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian, or contact Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Free Webinar TODAY! Not Just Bingo: Library Services and Programs for Older Adults

Not Just Bingo: Library Services and Programs for Older Adults | Breezing Along with the RML

Today, November 15 at 10am MT/11am CT

Description: To support older adults in our community, libraries must be prepared to provide dynamic, educational and creative programming. Stacey Lewis, Manager of Adult Programming at St. Louis County Library, discusses how to tap into community resources and partnerships to provide a wide range of program opportunities, tips for developing and sustaining partnerships, and specific examples of programs and services that have worked for this large metropolitan library system.

 

To join the training session:
——————————————————-
1. Go to Go to https://nih.webex.com/nih/k2/j.php?MTID=t2d3144e085574eef9be59b62fcf1231d
2. Enter your name and email address (or registration ID).
3. Enter the session password: mcrbreezing
4. Click “Join Now”.
5. Follow the instructions that appear on your screen.

——————————————————-

To view in other time zones or languages, please click the link
https://nih.webex.com/nih/k2/j.php?MTID=t31b699875e9f4a8498a1cce6463e9e08

——————————————————-
To join the session by phone only:
——————————————————-
To receive a call back, provide your phone number when you join the training session, or call the number below and enter the access code.
Call-in toll number (US/Canada): 1-650-479-3208
Access code: 621 206 616

Annette Parde-Maass
Education and Outreach Coordinator
National Network of Libraries of Medicine | MidContinental Region
Creighton University Health Sciences Library
AnnetteParde-Maass@creighton.edu
402.280.4156

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

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 October 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts, the Nebraska Department of Labor, the Nebraska Secretary of State, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link above, or directly in the .pdf below.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, or contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian, or Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Friday Reads: Figures in Silk, by Vanora Bennett

Figures in Silk, by Vanora Bennett, once again falls into my favorite genre to read: historical fiction.  It is a glimpse into early Tudor history: not into life at court itself, but rather into the way that the political machinations affected and disrupted the lives of London’s ordinary citizens and particularly its powerful merchants.

The year is 1471.   Edward IV, who won the throne with the help of his brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, is restoring law and order after the long years of war during the War of the Roses. Under Edward IV, life in England begins to improve. Business is booming once more and the printing and silk industries prosper in London.

 

When silk merchant John Lambert marries off his two beautiful daughters, their fortunes are forever changed. Elder daughter Jane Shore begins a notorious liaison with the king while industrious and clever Isabel finds herself married into the house of Claver, a wealthy silk dynasty. Fate delivers Isabel a challenge when her new husband is killed and she is forced into apprenticeship to her mother-in-law, Alice Claver.

Isabel is already an accomplished embroiderer of silk in her own right, but it is from Alice Claver that Isabel learns all there is to know about the silk trade and its’ purchase from Italy, Persia, Spain, Tunisia, and beyond. Isabel learns to make her way in this new world of silk and forges a contract with her sister’s lover, King Edward IV.  This new contract allows Isabel to bring silk production to London for the first time, and to hopefully break the monopoly that Venetian silk makers have over the silk trade.

As Isabel grows in power, and her plan for a silk industry run by Englishwomen is set into motion, the political landscape shifts in dangerous ways.  One sister will fall as the other rises and choices must be made that will change their lives forever.

If you enjoyed Vanora Bennett’s first novel Portrait of an Unknown Woman, you will definitely enjoy Figures in Silk!

Posted in Books & Reading, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

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 September 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, the Nebraska Secretary of State, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link above, or directly in the .pdf below.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Talking Books and Banned Books Week

We don’t often think of banned book issues when considering talking book and braille library services, but yesterday, the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped shared this fascinating story upon the passing of Hugh Hefner:

“Hugh Hefner’s death on Wednesday at age 91 brings to mind ‘Playboy’ magazine’s role in the history of NLS. In the early 1980s, various objections were raised about ‘Playboy’ being offered as part of the NLS magazine program. In response, the House and the Senate decided to end taxpayer funding for the braille edition of the magazine. The American Council of the Blind, the American Library Association, the Blinded Veterans Association, and others filed suit, and on August 28, …1986, a federal judge ruled that withholding funds for ‘Playboy’ violated the First Amendment. NLS continues to offer braille and audio editions of ‘Playboy.’ And, just to be clear: they only include the articles.”

In the NLS collection, “The Playboy Interview (DB17158)” and “The Playboy Interview II (DB21612)” include more than fifty of the magazine’s signature Q&As with famous personalities, including politicians, actors, musicians, artists, and authors. Also “Playboy Stories: The Best of Forty Years of Short Fiction (DB42199)” collects some of the magazine’s award-winning fiction.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Free Webinar! Back to School: School Library Legislation in the Statehouses

Fewer than half of all states currently require a school librarian in their public schools. In recent years, however, legislation has been introduced in several additional states. Who is leading these efforts and what insights can they share with the rest of us? We will hear from three states and follow their presentations with a facilitated discussion for participants.  The representatives from the three states are:

Debra Kachel, Legislative Liaison, Pennsylvania School Librarians Association

James Keehbler, Former President, New Jersey Library Association

Mernie Maestas, President, Missouri Association of School Librarians

When: Wednesday, September 27, 2017, 2:00:00 PM CDT – 3:00:00 PM CDT

Register here!

Attendance during the live webinar is free and open to all. A seat in the webinar is reserved for the first 100 logins.

All registrants will receive a link to the recorded webinar if it fills to capacity.

The link to the recording will be available at http://www.ala.org/advocacy/chapter-advocacy-exchange

This webinar is brought to you by the American Association of School Librarians (AASL), the Chapter Relations Office (CRO), and the Office for Library Advocacy (OLA) as part of our State Ecosystems initiative to strengthen coalitions across libraries.

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Free Nebraska Statehood 150 Videos!

Did you know that Nebraska Statehood 150 has a whole series of short YouTube videos, titled NOW YOU KNOW NEBRASKA!, about the history, culture, people, government, and places of Nebraska?

Click here to watch: NOW YOU KNOW NEBRASKA!

Excellent resource for learning and teaching about Nebraska History!

The first week’s videos are presented by current Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, but the rest are presented by various kids and adults.  VERY informative, fun, quick facts about Nebraska!

Five videos per week, beginning with January 9th, 2017.

 

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Programming, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs, Youth Services | Leave a comment

Free Nebraska Statehood 150 Event!

Salute to the Good Life : A Gala Tribute to Nebraska’s History, Culture and Military Personnel

Webpage

Friday, September 22

4:00 PM – 10:30 PM
Centennial Mall South | Lincoln
Free Admission | Family Friendly
Festival Seating | Bring Your Own Lawn Chairs or Blankets

Food Trucks| Laser Light Show | Fireworks | Remembering our Fallen Memorial | Emceed By Broadcast House

Schedule:

Truckin’ Through Nebraska | A Mobile Children’s Museum
Open 3:00-7:00 p.m.

Food Trucks
3:00-11:00 p.m.

Nebraska National Guard Band
4:00-4:45 p.m.

Josh Hoyer
5:00-6:00 p.m.

The Back 40
6:15-7:30 p.m.

Kris Lager Band
7:45-8:45 p.m.

Laser Light Show
8:45-9:05 p.m.

Kris Lager Band
9:10-10:10 p.m.

Fireworks Finale
10:10-10:30 p.m.

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Public Relations, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Free Webinar! Beyond Books: Public Libraries Address the Social Determinants of Health

Beyond Books: Public libraries address the social determinants of health Breezing Along with the RML from NNLM MCR

September 20, 2017 10am MT/11am CT

Register

Join Anna Morgan from the Healthy Library Initiative as she discusses public libraries, their influence on social determinants of health, and their importance for community well-being. The Healthy Library Initiative has worked with Philadelphia area public libraries in identifying how the libraries address social determinants of health and how they can build on those programs. To read more about Healthy Library Initiative and what they do, visit http://www.healthylibrary.org/.

Presenter

Anna Uma Morgan, MD, MSc, MSHP is a general internist and recently completed the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Morgan’s work is focused on community-based interventions for addressing the social determinants of health. As a clinical scholar, she worked primarily with the Healthy Library Initiative, a partnership between Penn and the Free Library of Philadelphia aimed at harnessing the power of public libraries to improve population health. She continues to practice primary care in underserved populations.

 

Questions? Contact:

Annette Parde-Maass

Education and Outreach Coordinator

National Network of Libraries of Medicine | MidContinental Region

Creighton University Health Sciences Library

AnnetteParde-Maass@creighton.edu

402.280.4156

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Free Webinar! Libraries Transform: Health Literacy Toolkit

Libraries Transform: Health Literacy Toolkit

Register

Date: September 14, 2017

Time: 12-1pm MT/1-2pm CT

Description: October is Health Literacy Month. The American Library Association (ALA) and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) have created a Health Literacy Month toolkit for the Libraries Transform campaign. Join Amanda J. Wilson (NNLM) and Jeff Julian (ALA) as they discuss NNLM’s mission to support health literacy efforts in libraries and explain how to use the key messages, data, and marketing materials to promote health literacy at your library.

1 MLA CE is offered for this session

 

Annette Parde-Maass

Education and Outreach Coordinator

National Network of Libraries of Medicine | MidContinental Region

Creighton University Health Sciences Library

AnnetteParde-Maass@creighton.edu

402.280.4156

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

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 July 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, the Nebraska State Board of Health, the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, and the Local Emergency Operations Plans, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Friday Reads: Raven Rock

I had high expectations for Raven Rock: The Story of the U.S. Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself—While the Rest of Us Die. I became interested in the book after listening to an engaging interview with the author, Garrett Graff, on NPR’s Fresh Air. Unfortunately, the book didn’t live up to my expectations. Don’t get me wrong, there is some good stuff here. But generally I found the middle part of the book to be a repetitive bore. Raven Rock picks up during World War II, when the U.S. was heading full throttle into the atomic age, with Harry S. Truman President of the United States. While there are many facets to Raven Rock, Graff primarily describes the aftermath of the atomic bomb deployment prior to the cold war, subsequent U.S. government preparations for doomsday, and other disaster planning. The book provides a chronology by each president after Truman. I found the first few chapters to be of interest (Truman and Eisenhower), then the beginning of aforementioned lackluster, drawn out, and sleepy sections, then heating up again around September 11, 2001 (Bush 43).

I think one of the challenges for Graff was getting his hands on information that wasn’t classified. This might explain why the reader has chapter after chapter devoted to the 50’s and 60’s time period, yet less than 2 pages devoted to President Clinton. Raven Rock, named after the massive Raven Rock Mountain Complex (also known as Site R), is an underground military nuclear bunker carved into the area’s greenstone granite, and located about 6 miles north of Camp David. It is basically an underground city, complete with offices, communications centers, bomb blast doors, dining facilities, an infirmary, bathrooms, etc. Speaking of Camp David, Graff provides an interesting narrative about the history of it (formerly known as Shangri-La). One of the appealing aspects of Raven Rock is these sorts of anecdotes, and I wish Graff devoted more attention to them. A few highlights include Graff’s descriptions of code names used for government officials and their family members, and the challenge to deciphering them on radio transmissions. Example: “Volunteer will reside at VALLEY for an indefinite time. I repeat: VOLUNTEER will reside at VALLEY for an indefinite time. VICTORIA requests that VENUS will go to VALLEY with agent” actually meant that Lyndon Johnson (VOLUNTEER) will reside at his private residence at The Elms (VALLEY), and Lady Bird (VICTORIA) requests that Luci (LBJ’s daughter, VENUS) will go to The Elms (VALLEY) with an agent. Also, the fact that up until at least 1910, tourists could sit at the president’s desk in the White House, and as Vice President, Lyndon Johnson’s phone number was listed in the phone book. Another anecdote describes a curious exchange between Chief Justice Earl Warren and officials who distributed a Mt. Weather entrance ID card to him but not Mrs. Warren. In our self-centered world of today, you have to appreciate the Chief’s returning the card, sarcastically saying:

“Then I suppose I should call my wife and say, ‘Honey, there is an atomic bomb attack to be made on Washington, and I am flying to safety in Appalachia. Sorry I don’t have time to come home and say good-bye, but it was nice to have met you.'”

Raven Rock is one of a number of emergency operations centers for the government, along with Mount Weather in Virginia, and Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado. But Graff’s Raven Rock is about much more than the construction and maintenance of these facilities; it’s about government disaster, succession, and “COG” or continuity of government planning — the principle that government continues to operate in the case of a catastrophic event. Granted most of this centers around the cold war, but on September 11, 2001, it took a much different turn. As Graff points out, September 11 exposed a clustered mess of communications problems and other assorted government disarray. Graff also devotes quite a bit of attention to the nuclear “football”. While the football doesn’t explicitly contain launch codes, “one military aide compared it to a Denny’s menu. You can go through and point at different pictures and that’s the type of nuclear war you would order. …”

All in all, Graff provides an interesting narrative of how the government’s plans have evolved over time to adequately handle these sorts of real and potential doomsday type disasters. Graff points out some of these failures along the way, but also interesting facts that most readers likely are unaware of. Just skip the middle third of the book.

Posted in Books & Reading, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

New Public Library Toolkit for Consumer Health Information Resources

The McGoogan Library of Medicine at University of Nebraska Medical Center has created a new Public Library Toolkit to support Nebraska public librarians in delivering consumer health information to their communities. The toolkit provides links to training resources for librarians, and state and local health statistics to help with program planning. It also provides websites for consumers that cover health and wellness, finding healthcare, financial assistance, and caregiver support.

McGoogan Library has been serving the consumer health information needs of Nebraska citizens for over 30 years. The library continues to seek opportunities to support and collaborate with public libraries. If you have feedback or suggestions for the toolkit, please contact Christian Minter, Community Engagement & Health Literacy Librarian at christian.minter@unmc.edu or 402-559-7226.

Posted in Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Technology, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

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 July 2017.  Included are reports from the Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts, annual reports and information guides from the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

All items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted .pdf link.

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Uncategorized, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

Public Library Survey Tip No. 6

Today marks the end of the Bibliostat tip series. We will focus on the federal question of capturing and reporting the number of Wi-Fi sessions your library has in the reporting period (your fiscal year). The idea behind this is that communities may lack areas providing free Wi-Fi, and the local public library often fills that gap. The difficulty lies with how to accurately capture this data, especially in smaller libraries that lack full time IT tech support. Real time technical solutions do exist, but for most these aren’t practical. Today I’ll offer you a simple potential solution to more accurately capture a representative sample of who is using your Wi-Fi. As most of you know, data for the public library survey is sometimes estimated from captured data from an “average week”. In other words, you take a representative sample during a typical time period (e.g. for the number of library visitors you count everyone during a week in the spring, summer, fall, and winter) and then you do a bit of math to get the reported annual figures.

So the question really is how you more accurately get this sample for Wi-Fi uses? And what about the kids in the parking lot that are using your Wi-Fi? Some libraries have taken to following people around to see if they have a laptop, tablet, or smartphone, and then recording that data (called an “observation estimate”), but who really wants to do that (and it might be more than a bit creepy depending on the circumstances). So here is another option. If you have an android or apple device (e.g. smartphone) capturing these representative samples just got a little easier and a little more accurate, but it does take a bit of work during your sample time period. First, you need to get an app that tells you what devices are connected to your Wi-Fi at a particular point in time. You could search the App Store (Apple) or the Play Store (Android) at length for network scanners or terms such as who is using my Wi-Fi, but I’ll give you a couple of apps that are available for free and work fairly well. These are Fing and EZ Net Scan. In no way am I endorsing these over others; these are just two examples. You should try some out and see what might fit your needs. Downloading these apps offers you the ability, when you are connected to the library Wi-Fi, to see all the other devices that are connected to the same Wi-Fi network. So ideally you would start at a particular point in time, write down the IP addresses for the connected devices, and then re-scan every so often (say every 15-30 minutes) to see if any new devices are connected, or if a device drops connections. Once you collect the data during the sample time period, you just do your math to get an annual figure. Worst case scenario is that you capture data for a typical day and then multiply by the number of days in a year you are open. Better case is that you take a sample for a defined time period, such as a typical day during each of the four seasons (spring, summer, winter, and fall).  Shaka.

Posted in General, Information Resources, Library Management, Uncategorized | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Public Library Survey Tip No. 5

Shaka. There are two more installments in this series of Bibliostat tips, and both will focus on library technology. Today we will take a look at internet connections and speed. There are two relevant questions: (1) What is the type of your internet connection; and (2) What is your download speed. For the type of your connection, if you don’t know, you will need to ask your internet service provider (ISP) to confirm. These are things like DSL, Cable, Fiber Optic, Satellite, etc. The trickier part to the survey is reporting your download speed, because there are a variety of factors that could affect your speed test. There are a number of different websites and online tools to measure your speed, but we like to recommend the NDT (Network Diagnostic Tool). Completing a test is easy by going to this site and clicking on “Start Test”. After a few minutes, a report will kick out that will tell you what your download speed is. A few things to keep in mind: It’s best to do a test at various times during an “average day”. If you only do one test or test at the same time every day, you are not likely to get an accurate sample of your actual speed. Also, try and perform tests both from your Wi-Fi and over a wired connection, as there might be some variance between the two. When you do multiple tests, report the average speed.

The takeaway from collecting this data on your end is that you have a more accurate picture of what speed you are offering compared to what you are actually paying for. Secondly, the speed tests might flag other network issues that you need to look into. For instance, if your wired speed is consistently 60 Mbps, and your Wi-Fi speed lags far behind that, then you might have issues that need to be investigated (such as your Wi-Fi router, it’s range, or some other issue). Finally, measuring your speed is helpful as a comparison tool; you can compare what your library offers compared to your peer libraries.

Posted in General, Library Management, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment