Recently in news Category

Cornell University, has been awarded a $882,610 grant by the NSF for the Tools for Open Access Cyberinfrastructure project, which will enhance the popular arXiv repository. The grant was funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, read the award here.

The arXive has been hosted by Cornell Library since 2001 and according to the press release:

"The grant for research into new features is independent of the operation and maintenance provided by the library, according to Simeon Warner, director of IT application development for the library, who oversees the operation of the arXiv. The Library is engaged in a separate effort to find long-term support to maintain and develop the arXiv, he noted.

New tools will link papers by concepts, not just by the citations they contain, and this will help users without advanced expertise -- including some outside the scientific community -- understand the significance of new research, said Ginsparg."

This is not the first announcement to "socialize" scientific research. A related effort (Cornell based) will create a "Facebook for Scientists" according to one press release. Cornell's Vivo software will be enhanced to connect scientists from around the world.

Read more about the $12.2 Million Grant for VIVOweb, "Social Networking Software for Scientists"

Or, try the current version of Vivo Live: It's very much like a faculty expertise database, using data from many systems on campus and combining it into a nice interface. Of course, the UMN has plans to do something along those lines, this article from the daily explains the long history of our own faculty database.

Ebooks becoming the norm in Academia?

The JISC just released a study on E-book use in the UK. Their "National E-Books Observatory Project: Key Findings and Recommendations" are presented online in..of course, an e-book at

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

"The results of the two year project exploring the behaviors of e-book users and the impact of course text e-books on print sales are now available. The final report summaries the key findings of the project and the recommendations for future action... captured through deep log analysis, focus groups, user surveys and print sales analysis."


HathiTrust: Shared Digital Repository

Have you begun to follow the developments around what is emerging as the world's largest digital library? Did you know that the University of Minnesota is a charter partner in this enterprise? Now you can search the entire digital library collection using their just released "Full Text Search" at

The HathiTrust is a massively scaled digital repository providing both access and preservation services for a growing number of research institutions, including all of the CIC, the University of California system, the University of Virginia, and more to be announced. Launched a little more than one year ago, the HathiTrust already contains an impressive 4,619,395 volumes or 1,616,788,250 pages (all full-text searchable) or 172 terabytes or 55 miles of shelved materials. Of these volumes 710,961 are in the public domain and are fully displayable.

The University of Minnesota Libraries are in the process of adding tens of thousands of scanned government documents into HathiTrust and anticipate adding hundreds of thousands of items over the next few years. The current catalog for searching the holdings of HathiTrust is available at: . A collaborative project is underway to build a longer-term discovery interface for HathiTrust with OCLC using WorldCat Local technology.

An impressive list of other initiatives around HathiTrust, including data mining, ingest of image and audio files, understanding the relationship between digital and print repositories for the purposes of preservation, and many more are underway. Monthly progress reports are published via RSS feeds at: . Check it out; HathiTrust is certain to be part of our "shared digital future."

SciFinder Scholar Now Available Online

If you're a SciFinder user than you know that in the past you've had to download client software onto your desktop to search SciFinder's database and use VPN if you wanted to access it off-campus.

Now SciFinder has recently made an online version available to UMN Library users.

To use SciFinder online you'll have to set up a SciFinder's the steps that our Chemistry Librarian, Meghan Lafferty sent out:

  • Log in to
  • Click on (or paste it into the address bar in your browser).
  • If you come to an Access Denied page, click on the "Please login..." link.
  • Use your e-mail address when filling out the registration form, .
  • Because only current University of Minnesota students, faculty, and staff are permitted to use SciFinder Scholar, please do not share registration/log-in information.

For those of you who currently use the client software, it will continue to work...but they are planning on phasing it out in late 2010.

We only have a limited number of SciFinder seats so please make sure to log out when you are finished using it.

As the semester rolls on, its a good time to remind you that Walter Library's SMART learning Commons offers tutoring help in many areas including Physics/Astronomy, math, writing, and more. See their website for a schedule of learning consultants and subject areas.

(For those who have not heard, IT will no longer offer tutoring services out of Lind Hall, they are referring their students to the Walter SMART commons) More on the move here

Also New this year: Peer-Learning Consultants hold weekly study session throughout the academic semester. These session are taught by trained undergraduates and are a great opportunity to ask questions in a friendly, fun group.
View their Fall 09 schedule here.


Our Digital Library Development Lab has created a mobile version of the University Libraries web site: . Expertly coded by John Barneson, this beta release features a compact version of our web site including MNCAT Plus search, our most popular database offerings, access to ejournals, library hours, and more.

Before we release this to a wider audience please take a moment to try it out (especially on your mobile phone!) and provide us with feedback.

Notes provides by
Martha Bishop, Observatory Librarian
National Radio Astronomy Observatory

The IAU Division XII Commission 5 Working Group Libraries business meeting at the IAU General Assembly was held Monday, 3 August 2009
Session 4 (4:00 - 5:30 p.m.)

The topics and presenters were:

  1. The Librarian's Brave New World - Panel of Librarians; Moderated by Uta Grothkopf
    1. Jill Lagerstrom
      • Library as place: renovating and downsizing
      • Metrics: The new HST Bibliography
    2. Chris Erdmann
      • Metrics: Facility identifiers -- how they are (or aren't) used
      • Showcasing FUSE: the ESO library full-text search system
    3. Marsha Bishop
      • Data curation: Keeping data over time
      • Brave New World: Strategies for survival
  2. Linking - Alberto Accomazzi

In attendance were:

Marsha Bishop, Bob Hanisch, Uta Grothkopf, Jill Lagerstrom, Arnold Rots, Miller Goss, Alberto Accomazzi, Chris Erdmann, Marion Schmitz, rep from Cambridge University Press, Masatoshi Ohishi, a few others unidentified

Full meeting notes and presentation pdfs and handouts are available at

AIP Archive Grant Opportunity

Anyone interested in collaborating on the AIP archival grant, please contact me

American Institute of Physics: Grants-in-Aid for History of Modern Physics & Allied Fields
Deadline: August 14, 2009
Support to make accessible records, papers, and other primary sources which document the history of modern physics and allied fields (astronomy, geophysics, and optics)

Elsevier's Publishing Ethics

A few links on the recent Elsevier publishing scandal. Although I have no original comments, I didn't want to let this this ethical issue go unnoticed. Instead, here's the news story coverage that I've been following.

Reporting on an Australian court case involving the health risks of a Merck product, Bob Grant reports the connection to Elsevier:

"Merck paid an undisclosed sum to Elsevier to produce several volumes of a publication that had the look of a peer-reviewed medical journal, but contained only reprinted or summarized articles--most of which presented data favorable to Merck products--that appeared to act solely as marketing tools with no disclosure of company sponsorship. (see Bob Grant, “Merck published fake journal,” The Scientist 30th April 2009.)

On May 7th, Grant reports 6 journals produced by Elsevier were fake:

"Scientific publishing giant Elsevier put out a total of six publications between 2000 and 2005 that were sponsored by unnamed pharmaceutical companies and looked like peer reviewed medical journals, but did not disclose sponsorship, the company has admitted."(see full story Bob Grant, “Elsevier Published 6 Fake Journals.” The Scientist, May 7, 2009).

Further coverage in The Guardian includes this comment:

"Elsevier chief executive, Michael Hansen, has now admitted that they were made to look like journals, and lacked proper disclosure. "This was an unacceptable practice and we regret that it took place," he said." (see full story Ben Goldacre, "The danger of drugs … and data" The Guardian, Saturday 9 May 2009 )

Finally, here is Elsevier's posted press release in response, saying:

"We are currently conducting an internal review but believe this was an isolated practice from a past period in time. It does not reflect the way we operate today. The individuals involved in the project have long since left the company. I have affirmed our business practices as they relate to what defines a journal and the proper use of disclosure language with our employees to ensure this does not happen again."

400 Years of the Telescope airs on PBS this month.

In 400 Years of the Telescope, Neil deGrasse Tyson takes viewers on a visually stunning journey from Galileo¹s first look at the cosmos in 1609, to today¹s thrilling quests to discover new worlds and glimpse the formation of the
first stars after the Big Bang. With warmth and humor, the planet¹s top astrophysicists discuss momentous discoveries and how telescopes have changed our understanding of the universe. Looking into the future, viewers
will learn of emergent telescopes that may detect life outside our solar system and allow humans to view the initial moments of the Big Bang.

For more information, visit:

You can check out the DVD from the library beginning in May. Check MNCAT

World Wide Science is an online digital library of 52 science databases and government publications from 56 countries.

The interface provides an alternative to sifting through the web in search of international scientific publications and open source journals.

Just added is the CERN Document Server, with nearly 1 million records, with 360,000 full-text documents of interest to researchers working in particle physics and related areas. The database covers preprints, articles, books, journals, and a significant volume of multimedia.

The People's Republic of China is another significant addition to in recent months with the addition of a database from the Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (ISTIC).

For more info contact Tim Byrne
Information International Associates, Inc.
DOE/Office of Scientific and Technical Information
P.O. Box 62
Oak Ridge,TN 37831
Phone: 865-241-2358

The multidisciplinary abstract database Web of Science (formally Science Citation Index) now indexes grant award and funding agency information for many publications.

Also new:

  • Conference Proceedings are now searchable included within Web of Science.
    Note: Times Cited counts now include proceedings citations. More information.
  • Authors can create their personal Researcher ID to correct author identity issues and increase citation count accuracy.
  • The 2007 Journal Citation Reports can show you the: Most frequently cited journals in a field and the highest impact journals in a field

    This database is listed on the Sci & Eng library homepage under "Multidisciplinary" or at

Stimulus Bill Funding listserv

If you haven't already, for details about Stimulus Bill funding opportunities and news, visit and subscribe to the listserv STIMULUS-RES-INFO

Recent news updates regarding the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Stimulus Bill) include:

  • $1.1 billion allocated for comparative effectiveness research
    Members of new "Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research" also named. More>>

  • NSF Director outlines key elements of Recovery Act implementation
    Notice no. 131 includes information on programs that will receive Stimulus funding, prioritization, and special award conditions.

  • Proposal deadline calendar now available
    Includes a brief description of the announcement, deadlines, links to useful information, and any applicable limited submission criteria. The (sadly, pdf) document will be updated as new information becomes available.

  • Researchers who are considering an interdisciplinary research proposal that includes the use or creation of high throughput data, as well as the associated issues of data management, analytics, and sharing, can contact Dr. Anne-Francoise Lamblin for guidance on proposal preparation. Anne-Francoise is the newly appointed Coordinator for the University's Interdisciplinary Informatics Initiative within OVPR. Anne-Francoise can be reached at 612.625.7414 or

AIP and APS Virtual Journals

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The APS/AIP Virtual Journals series collects various articles from high-ranked journals and brings them together to create a convenient overview of the following hot topics:

  • Biological Physics Research
  • Nanoscale Science & Technology
  • Quantum Information
  • Ultrafast Science
  • Applications of Superconductivity
Users may sign up for email alerts of the virtual "Table of Contents" to keep up with selected articles in those fields. For more information, and to test out the newly redesigned site, go to:

IT Library Committee Update

The following message was sent out to the IT Library Committee Members on 1/30/2009.

Members of the IT Library Committee,

Much has been happening in the Libraries since we met last fall. Here is a quick summary:

1. Walter Library now has a presence on Facebook, It includes our current workshops and events, news items, and photos. We currently have 17 fans, but would love more!

We also have a Twitter feed:

2. In addition, our own Kris Fowler, who has spoken at previous meetings of the IT Library Committee about changing models in scholarly publishing and retaining authors' rights, has co-authored an online guide entitled, "Developing a Scholarly Communication Program in Your Library," which is being promoted widely by the Association of Research Libraries and the Association of College and Research Libraries. It's available at:

3. Finally, I'm pleased to report that the University of Minnesota Libraries have received the prestigious "Excellence in Academic Libraries Award" for 2009, given by the Association of College and Research Libraries . A description of the award is available at:

I encourage you to read our actual nomination, which summarizes all that the Libraries have contributed to the University and beyond in recent years:

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or would like more information on anything I mentioned.



Janice Jaguszewski
Director of Academic Programs, Physical Sciences and Engineering
University of Minnesota Libraries
108 Walter Library
117 Pleasant Street S.E.
Minneapolis, MN 55455

The UMN-Twin Cities Libraries have received the 2009 Excellence in Academic Libraries award. This award, presented by the American Library Association (ALA)/Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), recognizes the accomplishments of library staff “as they come together as members of a team to support the mission of their institution.”

See the ALA press release about this award The actual award is to be presented by the President of ACRL (Erika Linke of Carnegie Mellon University) at a campus wide celebration ceremony to be planned for sometime in spring.

astro-ph now cataloged?

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Have you noticed that the arXiv divides astro-ph into subcategories?

Here is the interesting backstory coming from physicist Sean Carroll on Discover's Cosmic Variance blog:

"Here is probably the single most helpful thing I have ever done for the world. Last month Paul Ginsparg, who did a world-changing thing by inventing the arXiv system for sharing scientific preprints, was visiting Pasadena, and dropped by Caltech. We chatted a bit about blogs, the internet, the preprint server, ways one might incorporate links to blogs and talks and newspaper articles and all that ...
And then he asked, "Is there any other obvious way the arxiv could be improved?" To which I naturally responded, "You mean in addition to subdividing astro-ph into categories?"
... Paul and Mark Wise and I chatted for ten minutes and came up with a perfectly sensible (I like to think) set of categories into which astro-oriented papers would mostly fall, and Paul went away promising to implement such a scheme. After chatting around with a few actual astrophysicists and fine-tuning the system, it's now done!"

read the full story at

Got ArcGIS? The library does!

If it's difficult to get your hands on Arc GIS software, to make your own maps and create your own mapping applications, there are several options around campus- including the libraries.

The Borchert Map Library has ArcView software installed on the ten computers in our Automated Cartographic Information Center. The hours for the Map Library can be found here on their website. They also provide some assistance for creating and manipulating your data. Also, I've been told that ArcView software is on the computers in lab HHH 50 (open 8am to 6pm, M-F) in Blegen.

We have GIS data too. Take a look at the list of GIS information that the library subscribes to at

Try the Updated 5.0 includes a single-interface access science and technology information from 17 separate federal science organizations and searches:

Also, for those interesting in unlocking more government data and information, get your opinions submitted to Show Us the Data by March 9, 2009. The project will result in a report that will recommend documents and data that the federal government should make more freely available to the public in usable formats.

Libraries Allow Food/Drink


The library has loosened up on restrictions that ban food or drink in the library. Now you may enjoy "non-crumbly" meals and covered beverages without fear! View the new guidelines on the library web site at: Bookmarks with the new guidelines will be available at circulation desks at Wilson, Walter, and Magrath and all service desk will also keep cleaning supplies in stock.

This change was made in part to encourage library users to report spills for immediate clean-up.

APS Journals Allow Derivative Works

Note: According to copyright law, author's always retain the right to create derivative works, regardless of copyright ownership, under the fair use policy. For an entertaining explanation see this Fair(y) Use video.

Editorial: APS now leaves copyright with authors for derivative works

"When you submit an article to an APS journal, we ask you to sign our copyright form. It transfers copyright for the article to APS, but keeps certain rights for you, the author. We have recently changed the form to add the right to make 'derivative works' that reuse parts of the article in a new work. The importance of this change is discussed below."

To learn more about publisher policies that allow authors to rights such as posting their work to a web site or Digital Conservancy, visit the SHERPA reporting site

I've been frustrated by our library catalog lately and the sheer number of library databases (nearly 600!) are overwhelming and can be hit-or-miss on whether you might find the article you are looking for.

Luckily Google Scholar has shaped up to be a reliable way to access most article citations, and though a partnership with the Library, you can use Scholar to get full-text access to all library supported e-journals.

Here's how it works. In Google Scholar set your preferences (next to the search box) to "Library Links" = University of Minnesota - FindIt@U of M Twin Cities. Then each time you search Google, Scholar will display FIND IT Links to the library content - both electronic and print - otherwise a ILL link will appear for your convenience.


Also useful in preferences, you can set Google Scholar to provide citation export links in the format of your choice, like the free citation manager, RefWorks, that's supported by the library.

Walter Reference Desk Moved

In an effort to reduce the number of service points in Walter Library and to make our services more visible, Physical Sciences and Engineering (PSE) reference has moved from Walter 206 to the second floor circulation desk in the Great Hall. We hope that by providing both services in one area, this move will eliminate the need for library users to choose who to go to for assistance. We are piloting this change during the spring semester and will then evaluate it to determine if the move should be made permanent.

Please note that this move will not cut back on staff hours; a librarian will still be available for in-person reference from 8-5 M-F, and 1-5 Sat.

2009 International Year of Astronomy

The University of Minnesota Department of Astronomy is a proud partner in the 2009 International Year of Astronomy (IYA). In celebration, the Astronomy Department will be involved in many exciting events throughout the year. All of these events, such as weekly (Friday's at 8pm) Observing Nights, will be open to the public. Visit our Web site and Events Calendar to keep track of what IYA events are happening locally.

Google Map Mashup with Library

Try out this new tool I've created that allows you to search and discover maps held at the library using the power of Google Maps. The MapHappy mashup was debuted at the Geological Society of America Meeting in Houston last year and is now ready for your review and input!

  • MapHappy: A new way to find maps at the lIbrary!

Looking for digital Aerial Photos? The John R. Borchert Map Library is pleased to announce the release of MHAPO - Minnesota Historical Aerial Photographs Online (see MHAPO provides access to over 7700 digitized copies of historic photos covering the Twin Cities metro area.

Send me your feedback and suggestions!

Spring Workshops at Walter

January 29RefWorks Basics11:00-12:00
January 29Making an Impact with Wikipedia1:00-2:00
February 4Web Tools11:15-12:15
February 5EndNote for Sci/Eng11:15-12:15
February 9Keeping Up: Web-Based Tools2:30-3:30
February 10Zotero11:15-12:15
February 11Research Made Easy2:30-3:30
February 12Grant Funding3:00-4:15

These workshops are available in Walter 310. More workshops are available at other libraries. Check them out on the registration page.

Amazon: You can download a widget that alerts you if a book in is already in the library (Go to the download page). Of course if it's not... recommend it to me. The link is pops up in the Amazon page::

Google Just like your myLibrary tab in MyU the Libraries search box on the home page can be added to your iGoogle (go to download page).

Take a look at all the recent tools and widgets created by the digital library development lab at

The Get It Book delivery service has broken the 7,000 request mark during the month of October 2008. Only eighth months in service, Get It delivers books, journals, and other library materials directly to your campus office or nearest library for pick-up.

Get it Button Requests Per Month


Want to learn more about the Get It button, read my earlier post.

In Walter Library, the Great Hall on the 2nd floor will be open 24 hours starting Thursday, December 11 and ending at 9:00 pm on Thursday, December 18, 2008.

To kick-off the week, two Finals Week related events will be held in Walter:

  • From 1-6pm on Wednesday (12/10) the SMART Learning Commons will sponsor a Cram Slam event in 204 Walter Library in partnership with the Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence. Tutors and consultants will be available in biology, chemistry, physics, math, statistics, economics, writing, language, and more. Free food!
  • On Thursday (12/11) at 7:00 pm, the Science & Engineering library will host our annual Study Break with free refreshments, prizes, and a chance for students to stretch their legs and take a break. Meet us in first floor lobby of Walter until the cookies run out!

Also for those on the West bank, Wilson Library will be offering 24 hour study space in the basement area starting on December 11 and ending at 9:00 pm on Thursday, December 18, 2008.

Browse the last 20 Years of Physics

Latest issue of IOP's Physics World highlights the ways in which Physics has changed in the last 20 years. Great cover!

To read this issue, and many other popular magazines in print, visit the library and browse the current journal reading room on the second floor of Walter room 204. They are ordered by call number and Physics World is available at QC1 .P66.

Like other popular magazines, the older issues are available through the library's electronic subscription, in this case there is only a few months lag in the Physics World archive (1988-three months ago).

Wilson Library Book Sale

Start making room on your bookshelves!

The Wilson Library Fall Book Sale
Thursday, November 13 - Friday, November 14 • 2008
10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Wilson Library Basement

Thousands of used books for sale:
every subject from mineralogy to Mamie Eisenhower (whose 112th birthday is November 14!).

Prices on Thursday: $2 per book
Prices on Friday: $1 per book (until 1 p.m.)
Bag sale after 1 p.m. on Friday ($5 per bag)

For more information, contact Mark Desrosiers at

Chat with the Library 24-7

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The University Library Chat service is now available 24 hours a day thanks to a partnership with other libraries around the world. Ask reference or library questions from our web site (click Chat under the logo).

Read the MN Daily new story from 10-06-08 at

Looking for more ways to connect? The Sci/Eng Library is now on Twitter. Follow our tweets at We'll be tweeting about classes offered through the library, updates on new books, special library events ...all without clogging up your email inbox.

International Education Week


Save the date for the upcoming International Education Week November 17-21.

The Library's Diversity Outreach Collaborative would like to announce upcoming activities and to encourage everyone to participate. In support of the campus-wide program, there will be an Information Fair held in Walter Library for students, faculty, and staff:

  • Information is Culture: Tuesday, November 18 from 11am -2 pm in the 1st floor Walter Library lobby.

Watch the plans develop at

International Diversity in IT

This map represents the Undergraduate and Graduate student populations in the Institute of Technology during 2008. Click for the Poster pdf

Open Access mandate under attack

Read the article in this week's Science online:
House Weighs Proposal to Block Mandatory 'Open Access'
by Jocelyn Kaiser

Last week, members of a powerful House committee held the first-ever congressional hearing on a controversial policy requiring researchers to make their papers freely available to the public at a U.S. National Institutes of Health Web site--and floated a proposal to overturn it.

Full story contiues

Remember that because of the NIH Public Access Policy, millions of Americans now have access to vital health care information from the NIH’s PubMed Central database. Under the current policy, nearly 4,000 new crucial biomedical articles were deposited in the last month alone. This proposed bill would prohibit the deposit of these articles, and as a result, researchers, physicians, health care professionals, families and individuals will find it much harder to get access to this critical health-related information.

Time-Saving Workshops for Fall 2008

The Science & Engineering Library is offering over a dozen workshops this fall that are open to all staff, faculty and students. Join us to learn how to more effectively use freely available resources. Here is just a sampling from this coming week:

Google for Researchers

October 21, 2:30-3:30pm

With Google, you already search the web, share photos/movies/music, map directions and discover new things...but there are some tools you may have missed. This web search engine is on a mission to "organize the world's information and make it universally accessible." So let's explore the new tools and technology that pair Google-efficient tools with library-quality results to weave together a rich information web that goes beyond just the World Wide Web.
We'll look at tools such as, Google Docs, RSS Reader, Google Scholar, and iGoogle Research Gadgets that will help you access, evaluate, and share information in an easy collaborate environment.

Grant Funding for Graduate Students

October 22, 3:00-4:15pm

Find out more about funding opportunities available to graduate students. Learn how to use IRIS, SPIN, and Community of Science and the Foundation Directory to search for grant opportunities. Setting up e-mail updates on specific subjects will also be covered, as well as how to find internal U of M funding resources.

Web Tools for Working Collaboratively

October 23, 11:00am-12:00

Whether working with your colleagues across the University or around the world, it can be challenging to collaborate when you are in separate locations. Learn about web-based resources, both at the University and freely available on the web, that can help you to effectively collaborate. We will include resources such as Google Docs, and UThink.

EndNote for Engineers and Physical Scientists

October 30, 4:00-5:00pm

This workshop is an introduction to using EndNote. Learn to import citations, customize your account, and format your bibliographies and in-text citations. We will also discuss using EndNote in conjunction with EndNoteWeb, a free web-based version of EndNote available to University of Minnesota students, faculty, and staff.

Visit the Science and Engineering Library's workshops page for more information on upcoming workshops. If you have questions about the workshops or would like schedule a workshop for your class or research group contact Jody Kempf ( for additional information.

MNCAT Plus: Library Catalog Gets Facelift


MNCAT Plus is a new interface to the libraries' catalog which offers new features such as:

* Google-style searching. Simply type a search term or two and click “Go.?
* Relevant results. The items that best match your search terms will rise to the top of your results list.
* Powerful filters. Start with a broad search and refine your results with the links on the right-hand side of the screen.
* Real-time availability information. See at a glance whether materials are available online or at one of our libraries.
* Familiar functions. Features like Did You Mean? suggestions and links to Google Books and WorldCat make it easier for you to find what you need. When available, cover images of books will be displayed.
* Social networking features. Reviews and tagging allow you to make your own contributions to the experience of others.
* Save and gather your citations. Push citations for materials you want to use or share to RefWorks and
* Integrated access and delivery. Search MNCAT Plus and then move directly to online versions of items or request delivery of physical items with the “Get It? link.

The American Physical Society (APS) just announced their new online magazine Physics as a tool to help keep-up as "Physicists are drowning in a flood of research papers in their own fields."

Very true. So editor David Voss (former senior editor of Science) and team will write commentaries (dubed Viewpoints) and shorter distillations (Synopses) on significant articles selected by Phys Rev. editors. More in-depth articles (Trends) present a sub field overview and highlight particular advancement.

Does anyone find this and similar "time-saving" tools useful, such as the front-matter of Science of Nature or even Thompson-Reuter's ScienceWatch, or are they adding to the pile of things to catch up onl? Is APS's subject-specific approach more viable than past attempts to dig researchers out of the information deluge?

On the other hand, notice all the SN tools they link their stories to (yeah that's a scroll bar!) Physicists must be drowning in social networks too!


See the official announcement from APS below.

Walter SMART Commons Open

After a year of renovation of the former Learning Resources center, the new Walter SMART Learning Commonsl opened this summer on the second floor of the Science and Engineering library. There students may access the library media collection (DVDs, VHS, CD's, LPs), use media software (iMovie, Photoshop) and check out media equipment (like digital video cameras and our new flat screen viewing room). In addition to media service, the SMART commons incorporate workshops and academic tutoring support for many disciplines.

And save the date for the SMART opening reception in Walter: September 24 from 11:30-1:30.

LibX toolbar

LibX - Library Toolbar Browser Plugin is a Firefox extension that provides direct access to your library's resources from the Twin Cities campus. Use it to:

  • Search the library catalog directly from the LibX toolbar or using the right-click context menu.

  • access library content off campus by making it appear as though you are coming from an on-campus computer.
  • directly search Google Scholar for articles and access the electronic copy subscribed to by your Library. You can use this feature even from inside a PDF file, which makes retrieving papers referenced in a PDF file a snap.
  • link to library books directly from Google, Yahoo! Search, the NY Times Book Review, and other sites. For instance, book pages at Amazon or Barnes & Noble will contain cues that link to the book's entry in MNCAT. (like this )
    Watch this screencast for examples of this cool feature. (requires Macromedia Flash Plugin)

Scientist Memoirs online


The National Academy of Sciences posted hundreds of memoirs online. Find 900 full-text files for scientists like Thomas Edison, Joseph Henry and dozens of others at:

Also, remember that all of the NAS publications, reports and papers are available for download. In addition, check out other great biographical databases online, such as the electronic version of American Men and Women in Science. See more at the Physics Library resource page.

myLibrary now saves citations

I just wanted to let all of you know that myLibrary now has new functionality: the ability to create a list of "My Saved Citations!" Learn how to save citations or just try it anytime you are in the "Find It" menu from our databases and website.

If any of you have any suggestions for how to improve this please let me know.

Summer 2008 Workshop Series

Sign up for a free library workshop this summer.

Workshops at Walter Library:

May 21 Getting Published... 2:00-3:00
May 28 RefWorks Basics 3:00-4:00
June 4 Research Made Easy 2:00-3:00
June 11 Keeping Up: Web-based Tools 1:00-2:00
June 18 Grant Funding for Grads 12:30-1:45
June 25 SciFinder on the Web 2:00-3:30
July 9 Google for Researchers 1:00-2:00
July 16 Create your Powerpoint Poster 2:00-2:45
July 23 RefWorks Basics 1:00-2:00
August 18 RefWorks Basics 2:00-3:00
August 21 Grant Funding for Grads 9:00-10:15

More workshops held at McGrath and Bio-Med libraries

The Spring meeting of the IT Library Committee was held:4:00 -5:00 PM Thursday May 1 in Room 310 Walter Library

1. Announcements

Two new engineering librarians have been hired

  • Jan Fransen: Aerospace and Civil Engineering, May 19
  • Jon Jeffryes: Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering, June 2

SCImagine 2008: Student Robotics Projects Friday, May 9, 3:30 pm, Upson Room, 102 Walter Library

Competitive edge: Workshops for faculty and graduate students
o Grant funding: Search tools and resources
o Getting started: Publishing your science research article

Science Quiz Bowl: Terrific Success!
o 140 IT students participated

SMART Learning Commons, 2nd floor Walter Library
o Opening in May, offering tutoring services, writing assistance, computers for multimedia production, group study

2. Demonstration of New Tools and Services

o Can now attach files (pdf, jpg, tif, etc.) within your RefWorks account

Citation Linker
o Quick way to find the full text of a specific citation

E-Journal lists by subject
o Now available from the Libraries' main web page

"Get It" delivery service
o Click one button in MNCat to request delivery of books and journals

MyLibrary/MyU Portal
o Customized interface of key journals, databases, items checked out
o Link from

3. Update on author's rights

NIH mandate went into effect April 7. Learn more at Bio-Med library blog.

The web-based tool that lets you create a bibliographic library and automatically format citations has just been upgraded. RefWorks now allows users to upload files to attach to your citations. You can attach the article pdf from your computer and organize your research folders. Other ideas:

  • Create a personal bibliography
  • Attach notes
  • Upload supplementary material such as data sets, interviews, and power point presentations.

RefWorks is a free library service. Sign up for a new account. RefWorks works with BibTex and AIP citation styles and your library can be backed up on your hard drive.

If we don't subscribe to a particular journal in the library... fill out an ILL request! You can have any journal article (not subscribed through UMN) emailed to you within one to two days through an inter-library loan (ILL) request. This free library service will request the article from another library and email the pdf directly to you. You can fill out interlibrary loan requests from the library web site (click ILL) or create your free account at the ILL page.

What's really nice is once you have an account, any article that the library doesn't have access to can be requested with just a click of the "Find IT" button. So whether you are in searching Inspec, Web of Science, or even Google Scholar (set preferences first), the "Find It" button will link you directly to the article or give the option of a pre-filled ILL request if we don't have it. This works for books too!

Save the date: SCImagine 2008

SCImagine! 2008: Robots take over the Library

Three robots, three student groups…a battle of the intelligent versus the artificially intelligent.

Friday, May 9, 2008
3:30-5:00 p.m.
Free, open to public. Refreshments!
Upson Room, Walter Library 102
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

SCImagine web site

Come see live robot demonstrations and the latest creations of artificial intelligence by students from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota. The presentations will be accompanied by light refreshments and stimulating conversation.

SCImagine! emphasizes the Science & Engineering Library's role as an intellectual gathering place on campus. Each spring the library showcases university teaching, learning, and research in the physical sciences and engineering offering fascinating presentations and lively discussions.

MyLibrary Widgets


The myLibrary tab just got better! Not only can you save your favorite e-journals and databases or view materials you have checked out from the library, but we now offer the option to turn this information into RSS feeds or widgets for iGoogle, MyYahoo, or other portal/aggregator type venues.

Give it a try. Log in and click the RSS icon next to each module for more options..or you can click the Library tab in your MyU portal view.

Already almost 1,000 users have configured a myLibrary page with their personal library resources. Now all your favorites, like Nature or Science, can be just one click away! What's your favorite journal?


Save your favorite journals, list the resources you use most, and view the books you have checked out...all in one personal library page. Log into MyLibrary and start adding stuff to your MyLibrary portal page.

Browsing journals by title or subject category will allow you to add specific journals to your myLibrary account. Next to each entry click the "Add to MyLibrary" button. To get started:
Look for e-journals in Physics
Look for databases like INSPEC

Citation Linker

The Citation-linker will point you directly to journals and articles available online. Enter the information you have and be as specific (page numbers) or as vague (journal name only) as you like...we will do the rest. .

Get It Button

Starting March 3, 2008, requesting a book from a Twin Cities campus library will be a one-stop process for University of Minnesota faculty, staff and students.

Try it: Go to UM Library Catalog
Log into your account
Search for material
At availability screen click on “Get It? button
Select pickup location

Where: Any book, whether checked out or not, can be:

* held at the owning library
* delivered to a more convenient campus library
* delivered to an on-campus office, (UMTC faculty/staff only)

Once a book is either returned or found on the shelf, shipping will take place within 48 hours on weekdays; most requests shipped within 24 hours.

Welcome to the Physics and Astronomy Library news. We may be in different buildings, but this doesn't mean the we can't be connected! This new blog is my way of passing along valuable information about the library...without overloading your inbox. I have a backlog of items that I'll post here, including: easy tools for remote access to library resources, new online purchases of e-books and publications, and upcoming events and news that the library has to offer.

I'm always looking for feedback. Contact your librarian!

Lisa Johnson
Physics and Astronomy Librarian

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