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October 20, 2010

Ask the ALA Librarian

Showing Movies in the Library:

Q. There's a community group that wants to show a movie to its members in one of the meeting rooms at the library. Is this legal?

Click here to see the answer!

"Best Colleges" in Minnesota

US News and World Report announced its "Best Colleges 2011."

Four Minnesota colleges were named "Best Colleges in Undergraduate Teaching at National Liberal Arts Colleges!" They are:

Carleton College - Northfield, MN
Macalester College - St. Paul, MN
St. Olaf College - Northfield, MN
St. John's University - Collegeville, MN

We have much to be proud of in Minnesota - Congratulations!

September Reference Notes

The September issue of Reference Notes is now available.

In the spirit of the balmy temperatures we've enjoyed deep into October comes the September issue of Reference Notes. It may be a little late, but just like the temp outside, it's well above average. This issue answers the unanswerable, highlights resources to support students working on History Day projects, investigates a special feature of the Britannica databases, and reflects on banned books and intellectual freedom. See: above average, right?


Answering the Unanswerable: Librarians to the Rescue
History Day Resources
EBSCO and European Americana Database
Britannica's Featured Spotlight Series: Hispanic Heritage Month
Search Minnesota Reflections Collections in WorldCat
Google Instant
Death to RSS Feed Readers - Long Live RSS Feeds!
Reference Renaissance 2010
How To Be Suspicious of Studies
UM Morris Banned Books Event Celebrates Freedom to Read
Metropolitan State University's Intellectual Freedom Panel Discussion

The Friends of the St. Catherine University Libraries Host Ginny Cooper

Ginny Cooper, Chief Librarian of the District of Columbia Public Library on Monday, November 1, 2010 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm in Rauenhorst Hall, 3rd floor, Coeur de Catherine. This event is free and open to the public.

Meet Ginny Cooper, a Minnesotan, Past President of the Public Library Association, and recipient of the Charlie Robinson Award from the Public Library Association. Ginny has been recognized for being a public library director who has been a risk-taker, an innovator, and an agent of change.

Ginny will talk about public libraries, library careers and her own career trajectory.

Please join the Friends of the St. Catherine Libraries and the faculty and students of the MLIS Department in thanking the Friends of the Library and Development and Services Library for their generous funding of a new "Friends of the Library Development & Services Research and Collection Fund" supporting student and faculty research and library collections.

RSVP by October 27 to Rita Schultz (651) 690-6649 or rischultz@stkate.edu

October 15, 2010

RUSA - 2010 Isadore Gilbert Mudge Award

Nominate candidates for the 2010 Isadore Gilbert Mudge Award.

Established in 1958 and sponsored by The Gale Group, the award consists of "an annual cash award of $5,000 and a citation to an individual who has made a distinguished contribution to reference librarianship. (In 2001, the cash award was changed from $1,500.) This contribution may include an imaginative and constructive program in a particular library, authorship of a significant book or articles in the reference field, creative and inspirational teaching, active participation in professional associations devoted to reference services, or in other noteworthy activities which stimulate reference librarians to more distinguished performance."

Ramsey County Library - Roseville Branch

On Monday, Oct. 11, I visited the new Roseville branch of Ramsey County Library. They hope to qualify for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification. The library should definitely be on your list of libraries to see. The building is spacious and bright with room for many collections, a coffee shop, teen room, community room, Friends of the Library bookstore, and one of the larger children's section I've seen. It even has a "Calm Room" where parent and child can go to calm down. The second floor houses more than 50 public computers, study rooms, magazine, fiction and non-fiction collections, as well as their Ask a Librarian center (not Reference desk). The Roseville Library is a beautiful space for personal and social occassions.

Monday was their All Staff Workshop day and I gave a presentation on ELM in the Teen Room and stayed for a session by staff member Ellen Brinkman about Ramsey County Library's NetLibrary eAudiobook collection. The session was hands-on where we learned how to download audio files to an MP3 player and manage our eAudiobook files. RCL owns two different types of eAudiobooks with NetLibrary, MP3 and WPM files. I learned that MP3 files are available for download by patrons and the file will stay on their system for as long as they want it there, while the WPM files will stay on their system but will disable after 3 weeks. WPM files have Digital Rights Management encoded on the files to make them disable. The newer the eAudiobook the more likely it will be an MP3 file. Ellen did an excellent job of guiding 15 librarians through the process of downloading and managing an MP3 collection on personal devices.

October 14, 2010

Library related event at St. Catherine University--St. Paul Campus

Marilyn Johnson has been called sly and wise -- and a great storyteller. USA Today has called her nod to librarians, This Book is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All, "a humorous, unabashed love letter to the men and women who used to toil quietly in stacks but now circulate in cyberspace."

Johnson will share her anecdotes about the challenges librarians face in era of Google-powered searches and Wiki-powered knowledge databases on October 15 at 5 p.m. in Jeanne D'Arc auditorium at St. Catherine University.

The Student Governance Organization for the Masters of Library and Information Science (MLIS) program is sponsoring her visit. The event is free and open to the public.

"[This event is] for anyone and everyone who cares about their library and their community," says MLIS Graduate Student Candice Melinda LaPlante, an executive committee member of the organization. "The speaker is, herself, not a librarian, but a historian -- one who has found continued purpose and importance for our libraries and librarians, and who wants to rally people and raise their consciousness concerning this matter."

Johnson speaks regularly at library conferences across the United States. She is a former magazine editor and the author of The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries.

"I wrote This Book is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All after chasing dozens of tech-savvy librarians who are wrestling the accumulated history and culture of the world in a variety of mutating formats while serving needy, techno-stressed patrons -- us," Johnson says. "These librarians are leaning into the digital age while they hold firmly to old-fashioned librarian values like privacy, accuracy, open access, and free speech. Irrelevant? Hardly. In fact, we've never needed them more."

A question-and-answer session and book signing will follow her talk; for more information, e-mail lissgo@gmail.com.

By Pauline Oo
Oct. 11, 2010

Contact Pauline Oo, (651) 690-6181

October 1, 2010

Your Brain on Google

Your Brain On Google: Neurological Effects Of Search Engine Use.

Have you seen this yet? It is from a CBS interview with Neuroscientist, Gary Small. I'm using the link from e-strategyblog.com where I first saw this. We are getting smarted all the time!