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August 2010 Archives

August 31, 2010

New Database: Films On Demand

The library now has a new subscription, Films On Demand. It is a state-of-the-art streaming video collection consisting of more than 7,000 titles and covering a broad range of subject areas including humanities, social sciences, business, economics, science, mathematics, health, and medicine. The collection allows teaching faculty to incorporate outstanding films into their courses, course management systems, online lesson plans, or distance learning courseware. The platform of this collection also provides many Web 2.0 features allowing users to select, organize, and personalize for their own needs.

You are welcome to take full advantage of this collectiont! If you would like to learn more about this collection and its features, please contact a Reference Librarian at or your library laisions.

August 19, 2010

eBooks - Year Two

By Kenneth C. Green
From digital tweed, Inside Higher ED

Greetings, dear reader, and welcome to DigitalTweed. Launched in 1999 as a column in Converge Magazine, DT later appeared in Campus Technology Magazine (2003-06). Following an extended sabbatical, it returns to Inside Higher Ed, where IHE founders and editors Scott Jaschik and Doug Lederman have given me permission to wander the academic landscape. If successful, these posts will inform and entertain, and at times also annoy. A little dissonance can be a good thing.

Disclosure: these posts will often cite data from The Campus Computing Project ( Begun in 1990, Campus Computing is the largest continuing study of the role of eLearning, and information technology in American higher education. Designed as a benchmarking study to aid and inform campus IT planning and policy efforts, Campus Computing affirms the “Deming Dictum” (see W. Edward Deming) as a guiding principle: “In God we trust; all others bring data.” Some thirty firms in the college publishing and information technology industries are corporate sponsors of The Campus Computing Project. When appropriate – as in today’s commentary on eBooks – DigitalTweed will reference these corporate relationships.

It’s been an interesting 18 months for eBooks in higher education. Like other “ever-arriving” technologies, eBooks have been on the wish list in academe and for consumer markets for several decades. Many observers forget that SONY made its first foray into the consumer eBook market in the early 1990s. My first eBook experience was reading Jurassic Park on a Palm Pilot around 1993.

Read more.

Smithsonian Institution, Collections Search Center

ArchivesNext announced the winners of the Best Archives on the Web 2010. Smithsonian Institution, Collections Search Center won the Best Repurposing of Descriptive Data Award.

The Collections Search Center provides easy "one-stop searching" of more than 4 million of the Smithsonian's museum, archives, library and research holdings and collections. The access to more Smithsonian collections via this Search Center is increasing over time. Collections currently available include:

Museum Collections

Archives Collections

Research Databases

Libraries Databases

Image Gallery

August 17, 2010

A California-Based Reform Model Provides Direction for Transforming Teacher Preparation

From Alliance for Excellent Education

Washington, DC ─ The traditional training options available to high school teachers need to be redesigned to better align teacher education with current high school reform efforts, according to a new brief from the Alliance for Excellent Education. The Linked Learning Approach: Building the Capacity of Teachers to Prepare Students for College and Careers argues that teacher preparation programs based on the Linked Learning approach offer a promising model for other school districts, states, and regions to create and sustain college- and career-focused learning environments.

This brief follows the Alliance’s first Linked Learning brief, Preparing Students for College and Career: Linked Learning in California—released in March 2010—which explains the basics of a Linked Learning program, highlights promising models, and outlines the challenges and benefits of implementing the approach. Both briefs were made possible with the generous support of the James Irvine Foundation.

Launched in California, Linked Learning connects rigorous content material with real-world experience in a wide range of fields, such as engineering or arts and media, with the goal of preparing students for postsecondary education, work, and life. In both curriculum and structure, Linked Learning schools vary from traditional high schools and therefore demand a different type of teacher preparation that blends academic- and career-focused instruction.

According to the Alliance brief, teacher training programs with a Linked Learning focus build on traditional programs and are centered on four basic principles:

* Creating an integrated curriculum that establishes a clear connection between college prep courses and career-technical environments.
* Encouraging teachers to open their practice and collaborate with their peers.
* Developing and implementing project-based lesson plans and pacing those projects in a way that engages each student in the classroom.
* Establishing work-based learning opportunities such as internships or job shadowing.

Read more ...

Full report

August 13, 2010

E-Science and Data Support Services: A Study of ARL Member Institutions

Source: The Association of Research Libraries

Washington DC—The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) has published E-Science and Data Support Services: A Study of ARL Member Institutions, which synthesizes data collected in a 2009 survey with subsequent interviews of several responding libraries. Authored by Catherine Soehner, Catherine Steeves, and Jennifer Ward, the study was sponsored by the ARL E-Science Working Group to build an understanding of how libraries can contribute to e-science activities in their institution and identify organizations and institutions that have similar interests in e-science to leverage research library interests.

The study draws on data from 57 of 123 ARL member libraries (a 46% response rate for the survey). Over 75% of survey respondents reported that their institution either provides infrastructure or support services for e-science or is planning infrastructure for such activities. This finding demonstrates research libraries’ rapid engagement in e-science in recent years. Both the survey and the authors’ interviews detail how institutions are quickly rising to meet the challenge of managing data and their diverse strategies for doing so in the face of significant challenges regarding infrastructure, funding, and staff resources.

The report presents the findings of the survey of ARL member libraries and also includes six case studies compiled by the authors to elaborate library e-science activities and collaborations. Strategies for resourcing e-science services, staffing patterns, and the influence of institutional culture are explored. In addition to the case studies and survey findings, the report includes a bibliography of related articles, reports, and Web sites, along with the survey instrument and a selection of recent research library position descriptions with significant e-science support components. A free and open webcast is being planned for the fall.

To view the free report, please visit

August 12, 2010

Quantum fractals at the border of magnetism

From Science Centric

U.S., German and Austrian physicists studying the perplexing class of materials that includes high-temperature superconductors are reporting this week the unexpected discovery of a simple 'scaling' behaviour in the electronic excitations measured in a related material. The experiments, which were conducted on magnetic heavy-fermion metals, offer direct evidence of the large-scale electronic consequences of 'quantum critical' effects.

The experimental and theoretical results are reported this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by physicists at Rice University in Houston; the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids and the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems, both in Dresden, Germany; and the Vienna University of Technology in Austria.

'High-temperature superconductivity has been referred to as the biggest unsolved puzzle in modern physics, and these results provide further support to the idea that correlated electron effects - including high-temperature superconductivity - arise out of quantum critical points,' said Rice physicist Qimiao Si, the group's lead theorist.

Read more.

For the First Time Ever, Scientists Watch an Atom's Electrons Moving in Real Time

From Science Centric

An international team of scientists led by groups from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ) in Garching, Germany, and from the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley has used ultrashort flashes of laser light to directly observe the movement of an atom's outer electrons for the first time.

Through a process called attosecond absorption spectroscopy, researchers were able to time the oscillations between simultaneously produced quantum states of valence electrons with great precision. These oscillations drive electron motion.

'With a simple system of krypton atoms, we demonstrated, for the first time, that we can measure transient absorption dynamics with attosecond pulses,' says Stephen Leone of Berkeley Lab's Chemical Sciences Division, who is also a professor of chemistry and physics at UC Berkeley. 'This revealed details of a type of electronic motion - coherent superposition - that can control properties in many systems.'

Read more.

August 9, 2010

Salem Science (Forensic Science ) and Salem Health (Psychology and Mental Health)

With the Library’s purchase of the print reference title Forensic Science, library users now have access to the online version through a link from the entry in Webster (the online catalog) and on the Research Tools page under the subject heading Science. With the Library’s purchase of the print reference title Psychology and Mental Health, library users now have access to the online version through a link from the entry in Webster (the online catalog) and on the Research Tools page under the subject heading Health.

August 6, 2010

BASE: Bielefeld Academic Search Engine

BASE is one of the world's most voluminous search engines especially for academic open access web resources. BASE is operated by Bielefeld University Library.

As the open access movement grows and prospers, more and more repository servers come into being which use the "Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting" (OAI-PMH) for providing their contents. BASE collects, normalises, and indexes these data.

BASE is a registered OAI service provider and contributed to the European project "Digital Repository Infrastructure Vision for European Research" (DRIVER) which was successfully completed at the end of 2009.

In comparison to commercial search engines, BASE is charcterised by the following features:

* Intellectually selected resources
* Only document servers that comply with the specific requirements of academic quality and relevance are included
* A data resources inventory provides transparency in the searches
* Discloses web resources of the "Deep Web", which are ignored by commercial search engines or get lost in the vast quantity of hits.
* The display of search results includes precise bibliographic data
* Several options for sorting the result list
* "Refine your search result" options (authors, subject headings, year, resources and language)

Start searching BASE

Street Slide: Browsing Street Level Imagery

By Johannes Kopf, Billy Chen, Richard Szeliski, Michael F. Cohen
Presented at SIGGRAPH 2010
From Microsoft Research

A multi-perspective street slide panorama with navigational aides and mini-map.


Systems such as Google Street View and Bing Maps Streetside enable users to virtually visit cities by navigating between immersive 360° panoramas, or bubbles. The discrete moves from bubble to bubble enabled in these systems do not provide a good visual sense of a larger aggregate such as a whole city block. Multi-perspective "strip" panoramas can provide a visual summary of a city street but lack the full realism of immersive panoramas.

We present Street Slide, which combines the best aspects of the immersive nature of bubbles with the overview provided by multiperspective strip panoramas. We demonstrate a seamless transition between bubbles and multi-perspective panoramas. We also present a dynamic construction of the panoramas which overcomes many of the limitations of previous systems. As the user slides sideways, the multi-perspective panorama is constructed and rendered dynamically to simulate either a perspective or hyper-perspective view. This provides a strong sense of parallax, which adds to the immersion. We call this form of sliding sideways while looking at a street façade a street slide. Finally we integrate annotations and a mini-map within the user interface to provide geographic information as well additional affordances for navigation. We demonstrate our Street Slide system on a series of intersecting streets in an urban setting. We report the results of a user study, which shows that visual searching is greatly enhanced with the Street Slide interface over existing systems from Google and Bing.


ACM Transactions on Graphics (Proceedings of SIGGRAPH 2010), 29(4), Article no. 96, 2010.

August 4, 2010

ARTstor News

ARTstor is one of the library's research databases.

ARTstor Newsletter, Volume 13 now available
• International Collaboration
• Shared Shelf News
• Promoting ARTstor Collections
• ARTstor Travel Awards 2010
Learn more

Updated ARTstor subject guides now available
There are now twenty-two updated subject guides available on ARTstor's website, at In addition to highlighting relevant collections in each subject, these one-page handouts highlight unique interdisciplinary content in ARTstor, search strategies, and search terms that greatly aid discoverability across disciplines in the Digital Library. The latest handouts also address two new subject areas: the History of Medicine and Natural Science and Latin American Studies.
Learn more

Collection news

Now available: Contemporary architecture in the Netherlands and Scandinavia from ART on FILE
More than 870 images are now available from the ART on FILE campaign documenting contemporary architecture in the Netherlands and Scandinavia. Learn more

Now available: Seattle Art Museum
ARTstor has collaborated with the Seattle Art Museum to make available more than 2,700 high-quality images of world art from the museum's permanent collection. Learn more

August 2, 2010

Seminal Social Sciences Archive Goes Online And Opens to The Public

Few, if any, archival resources can claim as complete and wide-ranging a documentary record for American academic publishing in the social sciences over the past half century than the Irving Louis Horowitz-Transaction Publishers Archives, 1939-2009. According to William L. Joyce, Penn State's Dorothy Foehr Huck chair and head of special collections, "This archive of well over 100 cubic feet of materials documents the expansion of social science research and publication from the 1960s into the first decade of the 21st century as it also illustrates the widening focus of the social sciences on important public policy issues."

The archive is newly opened for public research use at Penn State's Historical Collections and Labor Archives (HCLA) of The Eberly Family Special Collections Library, University Libraries. Researchers worldwide can obtain more information and access digitized copies of the majority of the archive through the Libraries’ website at online.

Read more.

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