Library News

Scholastic To Sell Educational Technology Business To Houghton Mifflin Harcourt For $575 Million To Focus On Global Core Children's Books And Supplemental Education Businesses

Library Technology Reports - Fri, 2015-04-24 15:13
(April 24, 2015). Scholastic Corporation (NASDAQ: SCHL) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its Educational Technology and Services ("EdTech") business to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Company ("HMH") (NASDAQ: HMHC) for $575 million in cash. EdTech had $249 million in revenues and $40 million in operating income in the 2014 fiscal year ended May 31, 2014. Revenues were $175 million and operating income was $17 million for the first nine months of the current fiscal year ending May 31, 2015. Scholastic expects net proceeds from the sale, after taxes, transaction fees, and other expenses, of approximately $360 - $370 million.
Categories: Library News

Build a Circuit & Learn to Program an Arduino in a Silicon Valley Hackerspace

LITA Blog - Fri, 2015-04-24 12:05
Panel of Inventors & Librarians Working Together for a More Creative Tomorrow A LITA Preconference at 2015 ALA Annual

Register online for the ALA Annual Conference and add a LITA Preconference

Friday, June 26, 2015, 8:30am – 4:00pm

Computers have changed our lives, but what do we really know about them? Library/information centers can provide answers. Via this hackerspace hosted innovative and experiential session, attendees will learn practical skills such as soldering and learning the basics of Arduino programing and being able to create and adapt programs for their own needs. A panel of Silicon Valley insiders and librarians will share how their institutions programs on programming contribute to analytical thinking.

This experiential session is for anyone, with or without experience, who is curious about the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) / Do-It-Together (DIT) movement, and how it can help libraries. Come join LITA at Noisebridge, for a day at one of the first US hackerspaces. In the morning, attendees will learn to solder their own limited edition LITA project, learn the basics of electronics, and leave not only with the projects they made and inspiration to experiment on their own, but also with ideas for implementation of hackerspaces in their libraries.

There will be an afternoon panel lead by a Silicon Valley inventor and library colleagues from School, Public and University Libraries that will provide different perspectives of how a hackerspace and its programming can provide a catalyst for lifelong learning in students/patrons, and how libraries can remain relevant and supportive far into the future. The discussion will include helpful hints to decide what type of space and tools are is right for your institution. Finally there will be a choice of experiential small group projects along with tours of the space.

An additional materials fee of $25, payable at the door, may apply for this session

Additional resources

A Librarian’s Guide to Makerspaces
Mitch Altman TedxBrussels talk
Tod Colgrove TedxReno Talk
Castilleja School Bourn Idea Lab
The Maker Jawn Initiative at the Free Library of Philadelphia
Arduino

Presenters:

  • Mitch Altman, Co-founder of Noisebridge, President and CEO of Cornfield Electronics
  • Tod Colegrove, Head of DeLaMare Science & Engineering Library, University of Nevada – Reno
  • Angi Chau, Director of Bourn Idea Lab, Castilleja School (Palo Alto,CA)
  • Brandon (BK) Klevence, Maker Mentor and Prototyper, The Maker Jawn Initiative (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Tara M Radniecki, Engineering Librarian at DeLaMare Science & Engineering Library at the University of Nevada, Reno
  • Daniel Verbit, MLIS Candidate, University of Alabama

Where:

The fun will take place at the well known Noisebridge hackerspace. Accessible using the BART system.

Sponsor:

SparkFun is an online retail store that sells the bits and pieces to make your electronics projects possible. Whether it’s a robot that can cook your breakfast or a GPS cat tracking device, our products and resources are designed to make the world of electronics more accessible. Learn more at https://learn.sparkfun.com/

Registration:

Cost

  • LITA Member $235 (coupon code: LITA2015)
  • ALA Member $350
  • Non-Member $380

How-to

To register for any of these events, you can include them with your initial conference registration or add them later using the unique link in your email confirmation. If you don’t have your registration confirmation handy, you can request a copy by emailing alaannual@compusystems.com. You also have the option of registering for a preconference only. To receive the LITA member pricing during the registration process on the Personal Information page enter the discount promotional code: LITA2015

Register online for the ALA Annual Conference and add a LITA Preconference
Call ALA Registration at 1-800-974-3084
Onsite registration will also be accepted in San Francisco.

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the course, contact LITA at (312) 280-4269 or Mark Beatty, mbeatty@ala.org

Categories: Library News

Tips for Managing Electronic Resources

LITA Blog - Fri, 2015-04-24 09:00

Credit: Pixabay user Geralt, CC0 Public Domain

Last fall, I unexpectedly took on the electronic resources management (ERM) role at my university. Consequently, I had to teach myself–on the fly–how to manage 130+ electronic resources, along with a budget of several hundred thousand dollars. My initial six months focused on finances, licensing, and workflows rather than access, discoverability, or other key issues. So here are some life-saving tips for all you new e-librarians, because I know you didn’t learn this in library school!

Let’s start, as always, with the users.

Evaluate user needs.

Are you new at your job? Then begin by conducting a needs assessments, formal or informal. Check the programs and course offerings to make sure they still align with the e-resources for which you pay. Seek out faculty, colleagues, and students to get a sense of what resources they assign, use, or see used. Pull usage statistics from each database–and be sure to cross-reference this vendor data with web analytics because vendor data can be self-serving to the point of fictitious. Do your users use each resource enough to justify its cost? And they do really require the level of access you’re paying for? If not, can the resources be marketed and usage increased? And if there’s just no market, can those funds be reallocated and more relevant sources acquired?

Be budget-conscious.

Budgets are a huge consideration for any e-resources manager given that libraries are constantly absorbing budget cuts while vendors raise prices 3-5% a year, on average. Can your library afford to provide the resources it currently offers? More importantly, can the funds be used better? Can you save ten thousand dollars on one contract simply by renegotiating the number of concurrent users so as to reflect enrollment? Can you review your databases for duplication of content? Can you tap free, open access resources to plug content gaps or replace proprietary platforms? Can you talk to vendors and peruse old records to check for any unused credits lying around? And above all, how can you make the case for spending more money on electronic resources?

Negotiate terms.

Often you don’t actually need to throw more money at e-resources to get the best value. Most vendor reps are authorized to reduce off-the-shelf pricing by 20-25% without consulting their boss, and if you push hard enough–especially with smaller or longstanding service providers with a stake in the clientele–you can save potentially huge sums that can then be reallocated to purchase more databases or ebooks. And even if you don’t get a big discount, at least you can get special add-ons or other privileges. But you have be willing to negotiate and drive a hard bargain. Don’t be mean, because vendors are people too–usually very nice people; I’m Facebook friends with several. But we have to remember that our first duty is to get the best value for our taxpayers or students, not to “be nice” to the private sector and hand them all our money without demur.

Take advantage of add-ons.

Even if you aren’t a tough negotiator, you can derive maximum benefit from your subscriptions by exploring untapped services and add-ons most vendors provide. Want to market an e-resource? Check with the vendor-chances are that they can provide free web-based training and marketing materials. Annoyed that a database doesn’t integrate with your discovery layer? Talk to the vendor’s tech team; chances are that you can work something out. And major subscriptions often come with package deals and free add-ons. For example, libraries that use OCLC’s WorldShare as their ILS may be surprised to discover that ContentDM comes bundled with a WMS subscription.

Think consortia.

Speaking of packages, remember the value of group or consortial deals! We save 15% on our EBSCO databases through our free membership in an independent college consortium. Scan your environment to see if there are any great consortial arrangements out there. If not, consider initiating one with area libraries that have similar user populations and information needs. Talk to your state association and regional network or cooperative as well as to folks at your university. That said, be sure to evaluate critically the e-resources and terms of each consortial deal–beware of paying for stuff you don’t need, let alone paying twice for databases you already have.

Learn to love documentation.

Document everything. Seriously. When I started my position, there was no systematic workflow or documentation in place, older invoices were packed loose into folders, and invoices would trickle in randomly through snail mail. I created budget spreadsheets listing databases, vendors, pricing, and period of service; digitized and classified a year’s worth of records; and converted the system to e-invoicing. I also created a master password list for all administrative logins and a contact list for the reps and tech support for each e-resource. Not only does this streamline your workflows and preempt internal audits, but also enables you to document what e-resources you have, how much money you have saved, and how much money you can spend before the new fiscal year.

Read the contracts.

Read licensing agreements and contracts before signing. PLEAZ. Words are negotiable, same as prices. Can you tweak the wording to soften your legal obligations and remove financial penalties for violating the terms of use? Can you demand a VPAT documenting the e-resource’s accessibility? Can you add a clause excluding the library from liability if a user or advocacy group sues because disabled users cannot access the e-resource? Can you give the library a quick out clause in cases of multiyear contracts? Can you get reimbursed if the e-resource goes offline for an extended period? . . . In short, can you modify the standard contract? In all cases, the answer is yes. You can.

Ensure legal compliance.

Credit: Pixabay user Geralt, CC0 Public Domain

Be sure your institution is complying with the terms of the contract. You don’t want to get sued or have your access terminated without notice because people didn’t read the contract carefully enough and gave two hundred students access to an e-resource budgeted for only two users.

Closing thought.

Be that person who interrogates assumptions, saves the library money, and better serves staff and end users. If something was done that way for years, chances are it can be done better.

Do you manage electronic resources? Have you done in the past? Please share your tips below!

Categories: Library News

collectionHQ and 3M Announce Partnership

Library Technology Reports - Thu, 2015-04-23 15:12
(April 23, 2015). collectionHQ, the world's leading collection performance improvement solution and 3M, the global leader in library innovation, are pleased to announce their eagerly-anticipated partnership which will offer 3M Cloud Library subscribers the ability to load their circulation data into collectionHQ's ebook module.
Categories: Library News

Gale supports public libraries with new Digital Early Literacy Resource

Library Technology Reports - Thu, 2015-04-23 15:12
(April 23, 2015). Supporting public libraries' life-long learning initiatives, Gale, a part of Cengage Learning, is pleased to announce Miss Humblebee's Academy, a new early literacy product that will assist the library's youngest learners in building foundational literacy skills. Partnering with Miss Humblebee LLC., Gale has co-developed a robust product tailored specifically to the public library user, which includes the assessment tools libraries need to measure their impact on early literacy development in their communities. Studies show that participating in quality early learning can boost children's educational attainment and earnings later in life, underscoring the importance for public libraries to provide resources that serve this young audience.
Categories: Library News

Auto-Graphics' SHAREit selected by Access PA and Health Sciences Libraries Consortium (HSLC)

Library Technology Reports - Thu, 2015-04-23 15:12
(April 23, 2015). Auto-Graphics and HSLC, on behalf of the Pennsylvania Office of Commonwealth Libraries, announce the selection of Auto-Graphics' SHAREit, as the statewide resource sharing system. After a competitive RFP process including resource sharing and interlibrary loan vendors throughout the nation, Auto-Graphics was selected by HSLC to provide the next Interlibrary loan platform for Access PA, one of the oldest ILL implementations in North America. Auto-Graphics' SHAREit was selected because it meets the needs indicated to HSLC by the Pennsylvania librarians.
Categories: Library News

The Unfortunate Importance of Beauty

The title of Amanda Filipacchi‘s latest novel says it all. So many teens are so very conscious of appearances, I can only imagine that this book will incite discussion. The cover and title alone are likely to inspire certain readers to pick it up.

It also fulfills that frequent request for funny books (the humor here is largely satirical), and will satisfy readers looking for a love story, albeit a unique one. I also appreciate that its two main protagonists are artists, a composer and a costume designer. This is a sophisticated read for smart teens.

FILIPACCHI, Amanda. The Unfortunate Importance of Beauty. 332p. W.W. Norton. Feb. 2015. Tr $25.95. ISBN 9780393243871. LC 2014037010.  

A memorable group of five friends are featured in this wholly original novel filled with plot twists and turns that address the themes of beauty, friendship, and love. Barb, 28, an exquisitely beautiful costume designer, every day painstakingly dons a disguise that makes her ugly. Lily, 25, is a brilliant pianist and composer who, by society’s standards, is deemed unattractive. Georgia is a successful novelist with quick wit. Penelope, supported by her wealthy family, is struggling to find her place after having been kidnapped and held in a coffin several years prior. The fifth member is an ex-cop who was injured when he rescued Penelope. Barb and Lily have been friends for eight years and Barb finds Lily “nothing but beautiful,” though Barb’s perception is admittedly “skewed by affection.” In an attempt to have Strad, a man Lily has loved for years, notice her, she composes music that makes her beautiful. She must go to great lengths to have her music playing while they are together, or else wear a mask that Barb has created. The author weaves amusing elements of farce and fantasy into the story without jarring the narrative. Barb and Lily just want to find true love that is not based on appearances and through a host of preposterous circumstances, their wishes come true. VERDICT Though the characters are not teens, this novel is bound to spark a lively debate about the nature of beauty, whether society’s norms can be changed, and the notion of true love.—Jane Ritter, Mill Valley School District, CA

Categories: Library News

The midnight plan of the repo man /

New At the Library - Thu, 2015-04-23 09:11

    ISBN: 9781466855908
    Author: Cameron, W. Bruce


Categories: Library News

Burnt toast makes you sing good : a memoir of food and love from an American Mid

New At the Library - Thu, 2015-04-23 09:11

    ISBN: 9780670015443
    Author: Flinn, Kathleen


Categories: Library News

Station eleven /

New At the Library - Thu, 2015-04-23 09:11

    ISBN: 9780385353311
    Author: Mandel, Emily St. John, 1979-


Categories: Library News

Bird box /

New At the Library - Thu, 2015-04-23 09:11

    ISBN: 9780062259653
    Author: Malerman, Josh


Categories: Library News

Rivers of sand : fly fishing Michigan and the Great Lakes region /

New At the Library - Thu, 2015-04-23 09:11

    ISBN: 9780762778119
    Author: Greenberg, Josh


Categories: Library News

SOAS Library Implements Kuali Open Library Environment

Library Technology Reports - Wed, 2015-04-22 21:10
(April 22, 2015). SOAS Library has adopted the Kuali Open Library Environment (OLE) as its new library management system. As the UK National Research Library for Asia, Africa and the Middle East, SOAS Library has chosen Kuali OLE to manage its information and resources, including its renowned special collections. SOAS Library is the third library in the world to adopt the new system following Lehigh University and the University of Chicago.
Categories: Library News

2015 Koha North American Users Group conference

Library Technology Reports - Wed, 2015-04-22 18:10
(April 22, 2015). Registration is now open for the 2015 Koha North American Users Group conference, August 5-8, in Erie, PA.
Categories: Library News

After Hours: Circulating Technology to Improve Kids’ Access

LITA Blog - Wed, 2015-04-22 15:14

A LITA Webinar: After Hours: Circulating Technology to Improve Kids’ Access

Wednesday May 27, 2015
1:00 pm – 2:00 pm Central Time
Register now for this webinar

The second brand new LITA Webinar on youth and technology.

For years libraries have been providing access and training to technology through their services and programs. Kids can learn to code, build a robot, and make a movie with an iPad at the library. But what can they do when they get home? How can libraries expand their reach to help more than just the youth they see every day? The Meridian Library (ID) has chosen to start circulating new types of technology. Want to learn about Arduinos? Check one out from our library! What is a Raspberry Pi? You get 4 weeks to figure it out. Robots too expensive to buy? Too many iPad apps to choose from? Test it from your library first. Join Megan Egbert to discover benefits, opportunities and best practices.

Megan Egbert

Is the Youth Services Manager for the Meridian Library District (ID), where she oversees programs and services for ages 0-18. Previous to her three years in this position she was a Teen Librarian. She earned her Masters in Library Science from the University of North Texas and her Bachelors in Sociology from Boise State University. Her interests include STEAM education, digital badges, makerspaces, using apps in storytime, and fostering digital literacy. @MeganEgbert on Twitter

Then register for the webinar

Full details
Can’t make the date but still want to join in? Registered participants will have access to the recorded webinar.
Cost:

LITA Member: $45
Non-Member: $105
Group: $196
Registration Information

Register Online page arranged by session date (login required)
OR
Mail or fax form to ALA Registration
OR
Call 1-800-545-2433 and press 5
OR
email registration@ala.org

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the course, contact LITA at (312) 280-4269 or Mark Beatty, mbeatty@ala.org.

Categories: Library News

John Cabot University in Rome selects OCLC WorldShare Management Services

Library Technology Reports - Wed, 2015-04-22 15:10
(April 22, 2015). John Cabot University, an American university located in the heart of Rome, is the first in Italy to select OCLC WorldShare Management Services as its library management system.
Categories: Library News

La Veta School District goes live on the CLiC AspenCat LibLime Koha Union Catalog

Library Technology Reports - Wed, 2015-04-22 15:10
(April 22, 2015). La Veta School District has now joined the Colorado Library Consortium AspenCat LibLime Koha union catalog for all collection and patron management services. With the addition of the La Veta School District, the CLiC AspenCat union catalog now has over 700,000 bibliographic records describing over one million attached item records. The La Veta School District staff worked with the LibLime Project Management team to successfully transfer bibliographic, item, and patron data to the LibLime Koha application.
Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: April 22

LITA Blog - Wed, 2015-04-22 12:27

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week

Director of Research and Instructional, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA

Division Librarian, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

Emerging Technologies Librarian, Marquette University Libraries, Milwaukee, WI

Principal Librarian, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

Programmer Analyst II, Virginia Beach Public Library, Virginia Beach, VI

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a  job posting.

 

Categories: Library News

Boopsie achieves major milestones with 3 million mobile app downloads to date and 400,000 unique app users per month

Library Technology Reports - Wed, 2015-04-22 09:10
(April 23, 2015). Boopsie announced that it has reached 3 major milestones in Q1 2014. The company, which white labels its native mobile app platform to more than 4,000 library sites of all kinds, worldwide, has been downloaded over 3 million times, has achieved a sustained rate of 400,000 unique mobile app users per month and its users have performed over 750 Million queries to library databases using its platform.
Categories: Library News

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