Endangered Alphabets Exhibit

The  Departments of Anthropology and Languages & Literatures and Milne Library present:Endangered Alphabets Exhibit Opening
Endangered Alphabets Mandic Board
Endangered Alphabets Mandic Board

With artist and author, Tim Brookes**, Director of Professional Writing at Champlain College

Milne 105
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
2:30 PM

Wood Shavings - A Work In Progress
Wood Shavings - A Work In Progress

Writing has become so dominated by a small number of global cultures that the 6,000-7,000 languages of the world are written in fewer than 100 alphabets. Moreover, at least a third of the world’s remaining alphabets are endangered—no longer taught in schools, no longer used for commerce or government, understood only by a few elders, restricted to a few monasteries or used only in ceremonial documents, magic spells, or secret love letters.

The Endangered Alphabets Project, which consists of fourteen carvings and a book, is the first-ever attempt to bring attention to this issue. The text is the same for each, namely, Article One of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

All are invited to attend.

Refreshments will be served, courtesy of the Anthropology Student Group.

For more information about the display, see The Endangered Alphabets Project (http://www.endangeredalphabets.com/)

Tim Brookes, Artist & Author
Tim Brookes, Artist & Author

**Tim Brookes has this to say about himself:

“I was born in a small house in London, of parents who were poor, honest and liked going for very long walks. My education consisted of being forced to take written exams every five or six weeks, and eat school lunches of liver and onions-until I got to Oxford, where we had written exams every eight weeks and had lunches of pickled onions and
Guinness.This was quite enough to make me flee the country and seek gainful employment in Vermont, where I have lived for 24 years, writing a great deal and trying to grow good raspberries. Only one of my books has been translated into another language; it appeared in Dutch as “Geen plek om een koe kwijt te raken.” My favorite color is russet. If I had my life all over again, I would take more risks, like smuggling the liver out of the dining hall wrapped in my handkerchief.Read more about Tim on his blog, www.timbrookesinc.com.”

Top ten reasons to use Google Calendar

  1. It’s FREE!  Geneseo Apps are provided through CIT (see these 3 easy steps for setting up your account).
  2. You can import your class schedule into your Google Calendar right from myGeneseo.
  3. Keep track of multiple calendars in one place and customize the color for each (work schedule, class schedules, extracurricular activities, etc…).
  4. Share your calendar with classmates and friends.
  5. It’s in the cloud!  Google Calendar is available on any device with access to the internet.
  6. Get Google calendar on your phone (including Android, iPhone, and BlackBerry).
  7. Get event reminders.  You can set up pop-up or email reminders minutes, hours, days or weeks ahead of the event.
  8. Send invitations and track rsvp’s for any event.
  9. Google Calendar also has a wide database of public calendars that you can subscribe to for free (i.e. U.S. Holidays).
  10. With your Geneseo Apps account, you also have an account for nearly 50 other useful Google products.

5th Annual Library Assistants’ Day

5th Annual Library Assistants’ Day

Syracuse, NY

On October 25, 2011, Donna Hanna, Tim Finnigan and I travelled to Syracuse, NY for the 5th Annual Library Assistants’ Day.  This event began in 2007 and was co-sponsored by CLRC and Nylink.  This year’s event was hosted by CLRC, SCRLC, RRLC and WNYLC.

The day began with “Keynote Presentation on Social Media” by Anthony Rotolo, Assistant Professor of Practice and Social Media Strategist at Syracuse University.  Professor Rotolo addressed the group on the fact that social media has been with us for a long time in more of a “gate keeper” format and went on to explain how the current, less restricted Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and YouTube are affecting our lives.  He showed a picture of one of his classes, where everyone had a laptop open, and stated that Twitter is live on the screen during class. He finds he has much more class interaction by using this format.  Professor Rotolo’s presentation was extremely engaging and I found it interesting that he also has a class on Star Trek at Syracuse University!

After a short break, Nora Hardy, South Central Regional Library Council (SCRLC) presented “e-Books and e-Readers Panel Discussion” with input from Caitlyn Lam, Yale University; Heather Urtz, Mid-York Library System; and Charles O’Bryan, Delaware-Chenango-Madison-Otsego BOCES.

Ms. Hardy described what an e-Book and an e-Reader are and how rapidly the technology is changing.  She discussed on content sources, formats, and the devices.  Some of the considerations a library must make are whether to buy or lease a title, can it be lent, how many times and how many simultaneous users can it support.  Ms. Hardy also described some of the options available on an e-reader and suggested sites to research to select the best options for you or your library.

As a Staff Supervisor at the Service Desk in Milne Library, I was especially interested in attending Ben Hogben’s workshop “Supervising Students and Volunteers.”  Mr. Hogben is the Manager of Access Services at Ithaca College.  Not only did he impart a great deal of knowledge but delivered it with a sense of humor that kept us all engrossed and involved.

Mr. Hogben began with the Hiring/Recruiting process including identifying the skills needed, the learning outcomes for the applicant, what career building skills they would acquire in our employment, advertising the position and interviewing techniques to gain the information needed to hire the appropriate applicant.

The second topic covered was Training.  Mr. Hogben quoted a Chinese Proverb, “Tell me, I’ll forget…Show me, I’ll remember…Involve me, I’ll understand.”  He discussed learning styles, being clear on what you want, accessible training guides, methods of communication and evaluating performance.

Mr. Hogben then moved on to Retention and stressed three premises that organizations are built on; communication, respect and trust.  He impressed upon us the importance of personally thanking and congratulating employees who do a good job to re-enforce a positive attitude.  On the reverse, he discussed the need for a Disciplinary/Termination Policy.  There should be documented information that is given to the employee when they are hired so that they know exactly what will not be tolerated in your workplace and how the organization proceeds if one of the policies is violated.  Mr. Hogben states that discipline should always be handled in a non-personal manner.

As a follow-up Mr. Hogben recommended that we become “coaches” for our student employees and suggested reading material.  He also supplied us with other resources for supervising students and volunteers.  Last but not least, he stated the importance of having Emergency Procedures available online AND a hard copy in the department as emergencies don’t just happen on the day shift!

My final event of the day was “Local History:  Folklife in a Public Library” by Todd DeGarmo, Founding Director of the Crandall Public Library Folklife Center, Glens Falls, NY.  The Folklife Center manages the Special Collections and Archives of the library by researching and presenting the cultural traditions of their area.  Mr. DeGarmo described his background and how he began the Center and how he and his staff continue to fund it.  He stated that we are all “folk” and have our stories, our crafts, our beliefs, and our music passed down for generations and occurring now.  He suggested ways of promoting a library’s collections to be an on-going part of life in our own region.

As in the past, this event was an excellent learning experience and we came home with numerous ideas to share with the Milne Library Staff.

Coleen Hopkins

Donna Ayers: Profiles of Milne Library Staff

Donna Ayers is a Keyboard Specialist II and the IDS Lending Manager.  Donna has worked in Milne Library for six years and began in the Acquisitions and Government Documents departments.  She has been in Information Delivery Services for four years and her duties include managing IDS lending operations and working with our IDS Manager to train and supervise student workers.  Donna also selects locations, provides backup assistance with borrowing requests and provides backup for the IDS Manager.

Donna states that she enjoys helping people and working with the students here at Milne.  She can be found in room 108 on the library’s lower level.

Halloween Storytime this Friday at 6 pm!

On Friday, October 28th, Milne Library will host a Halloween Storytime Celebration for children and their caregivers! Any age is welcome, though these mildly scary stories are geared toward ages 10 and under.

Storytime (performed by Milne Library’s Mark Sullivan) will last from 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm, with refreshments provided. The event will take place in the Teacher Education Resource Center, located on the lower-level of Milne Library. Costumes are optional.

Take time to read, and discuss, a good book

Dear student, is your overworked brain screaming for a break?  Do you miss reading just for yourself, just for pleasure?  Maybe you have a list a mile long of all the great books you’re going to read when you “get the chance”?  Well, now’s your chance! Geneseo’s Book Club invites you to a discussion of their first book of the semester, Walter Moers’s The City of Dreaming Books, on Sunday evenings at 7 p.m. beginning this Sunday (Oct. 23) in Milne 104.  A copy or two may still be available in the stacks at PT2673.O293 S73 2008.

Publisher’s Weekly calls The City of Dreaming Books “a delightfully imaginative melange of Shel Silverstein zaniness and oddball anthropomorphism a la Terry Pratchett’s Discworld … a wonderfully whimsical story that will appeal to readers of all ages.”

City of Dreaming Books
Geneseo's Book Club's first pick of the semester

Student organizer Chelsea Pullano and Milne Library have partnered to sponsor the book club, intended to give students the opportunity to round out their lives a bit with regular, lively discussions of good books in a friendly and relaxed setting.  The Club plans to spend a few weeks on Moers’s book, and then decide on what to read next.  Milne Library will purchase copies of the books to loan, but it’s first come, first served – so join the group this Sunday and claim your spot around the table!  Refreshments will be provided.  Contact Chelsea at [email protected] for more information.

iPhone Apps for Research and Collaboration

If you’re like me, much of the time spent away from your laptop is spent checking your phone for news, email and new xkcd comics.  If you’re spending that much time on your phone, you might as well do something useful.

Check out the following free apps to help you search the literature, cite your sources, and organize your work.

iPhone Apps
iPhone apps for research and collaboration

Ebsco Databases – Ebsco provides access to a large number of databases via one app (ERIC, Georef, American History and Life, MLA International Bibliography, Business Source Complete, Academic Search Complete and lots of others).  Because access to these databases is paid for by the library (with your tuition dollars), you need to log in to Academic Search Complete via the library website first.  At the bottom of the screen you’ll click on a link that will send an email with an activation code.  After downloading the app, open your email on your phone and click on the link.  You will then have 9 months of access.  I’ve found this process to be pretty simple and easy – no need to log in every time.  The app will connect you to full text articles within the Ebsco databases, and even Geneseo’s “Get it” service for articles found elsewhere.

SciVerse Scopus Alerts – A search app for the interdisciplinary database Scopus.  This app can do keyword searching, citation tracking, and alerts for the science and social science literature.  Scopus is an outstanding database, but the app has some issues.  The biggest problem is getting it to work.  You need to remember your Scopus username and password (not your Geneseo username), and even then there can be trouble.  While the tech support is responsive, it just isn’t as easy to get started as the Ebsco app above.

Evernote – I recently started using this piece of software on my computer for note taking during meetings and lectures.  I am in love with its simplicity and universal usefulness.  Take class notes on your computer, then download the iPhone app to access them anywhere.  Record voice notes on your phone and automatically sync them to your laptop.  Take pictures with your phone and insert them into the notes you’ve already started, or start a new note.  The iPhone app syncs with the desktop application so that you never have to guess where a certain piece of information is.  Share notes with others via shared notebooks or simple weblinks.  I love this app.

Dropbox – Along with the Dropbox website, this tool allows you to easily share files among friends (with shared folders), or between your computer and phone.

EasyBib – An app from the popular website.  This app allows you to scan the barcode of a book and create a formatted citation (which you will, of course, check against the style manuals for accuracy).

Merriam Webster Dictionary – There are lots of dictionary apps out there.  This one is free, and has a nifty voice search function.

Mendeley – This app works with Mendeley Desktop and the Mendeley website.  It allows you to store and organize your PDF journal articles and book chapters.  It’s like iTunes for journal articles: Mendeley will organize your folders for you and you can create folders (playlists) of articles.  You can share those folders with others to help you collaborate on group projects.  The desktop version integrates with Microsoft word to help you cite your sources.  This mobile app allows you to access the journal PDFs you have synced to the web, as well as the ability to search your personal library.

Since I don’t have an Android phone, I can’t comment on the availability or usability of these apps on that platform.  Perhaps in another post.

What apps do you use to get your work done?

Ruby Certificate Workshop

Becoming an Uber-Researcher
Becoming an Uber-Efficient Researcher

Becoming an Uber-Efficient Researcher 

Thursday, October 22, 2:30-3:30 pm

Milne Library Room 104

Learn about easy-to-use research tools that help you organize, share and automatically cite your research sources.  Walk-ins are welcome! Bring your own laptop or check out a netbook at Milne’s Service Desk!

Resource Spotlight: GIS Subject Guide

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Geotechnology
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Geotechnology

Milne Library, in collaboration with the Geography department, has created a research guide for Geographic Information Systems and Geotechnology.  This fast-growing, practical, and influential field of study is both evolving and diversifying.  It is used heavily in many fields to visualize data, including (but certainly not limited to) medicine, law enforcement and business.  GIS incorporates visual-spatial data, and  data in a way that allows the user to view and even manipulate information, ultimately providing those users with more context and a clearer understanding of that data.

Whether you’re looking for examples of resources that incorporate GIS, looking to learn more about this ever-growing field, or even looking to create your own data-infused-maps, this guide can get you started!