Tag Archives: Princeton University Library

Lunch and Learn: SearchIt@PUL with Nancy Pressman-Levy and Jeremy Darrington

Wednesday, February 29,
12:00 noon

Frist Multipurpose Room B
SearchIt@PUL:  New Research Discovery Tool from the Library
Nancy Pressman-Levy, Jeremy Darrington
Would you like to learn how to expand your research beyond Google?   SearchIt@PUL, the Library’s new discovery system introduced in the fall of 2011, is just the tool you need to help you discover the impressive resources the Princeton University Library makes available.  SearchIt@PUL consists of two research options:
Catalog+ is a new interface to the Library’s Main Catalog, which allows you to limit a search by “post-search” facets, renew items online, manage saved titles, and place various requests.  
Articles+ is a large search engine that links to full-text journal and newspaper articles, as well as to other electronic content from the Library’s online subscriptions.  Other content includes dissertations, book reviews, conference proceedings, art and photo images, and audio recordings.
Join Princeton librarians Jeremy Darrington and Nancy Pressman Levy for a  demo of this exciting new system.
About the speakers:
Jeremy Darrington is Princeton’s Politics Librarian and a member of the Library’s Discovery Implementation team. Jeremy works extensively with students and faculty to help them find data and sources for their research. His interests include the use of technology in research and instruction, changes in the scholarly communication system, access to government information, preservation of research data, and digital privacy. He is ABD in political science from UC Berkeley and has a Masters in Library and Information Science from the University of Washington.
Nancy Pressman Levy is the Head of the Donald E. Stokes Library and a member of the Library’s Discovery Implementation team.
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Lunch & Learn: Mapping and Emergency Response: Managing a Flood of Data presented by Bill Guthe, Wangyal Shawa

Wednesday, October 5,
12:00 noon

***Oakes Lounge, Whig Hall***
Mapping and Emergency Response: Managing a Flood of Data
Bill Guthe, Wangyal Shawa

Following any significant event, people expect to find information on-line regarding the event’s location and potential impacts.  Such information is provided through existing GIS datasets, satellite images, on-site sensors, and eyewitnesses, and comes more quickly and in greater detail than ever.  The greatest challenges are to assess data quality and relevance, judge spatial accuracy and precision, and make the data available for others to analyze and present.  International structures to manage spatial data will be described, and examples of recent earthquakes, public events, and hurricanes will be explored.
About the speakers:
Bill Guthe helps faculty, staff and students use Geographic Information Systems  (GIS) and satellite image processing software.  Prior to joining OIT in 2000, he held a number of positions in New Jersey state government integrating GIS into environmental decision-making.  Bill works closely with Tsering Wangyal Shawa, the GIS librarian in the Princeton University Library, to provide training and ongoing support to GIS and remote sensing software users.  These include short training sessions, half-semester courses, and customized training provided as part of other courses.  Bill also helps individuals with coding or processing issues they may encounter using the software.  With Mike Chupa, Bill supports users of the PICSciE Visualization Laboratory to explore spatial and scientific information in a large-screen, high-definition display environment.
Wangyal Shawa is a Geographic Information Systems and Map Librarian at Princeton University. In this role, Mr. Shawa is responsible for the design, launching, and management of an automated digital cartographic and geospatial information service in a campus-wide networked environment. He has widespread experience in geospatial data selection, software and hardware and holds degrees in the areas of library science, education, geography, and cartography. He is an active member of the American Library Association Map and Geography Round Table (ALA MAGERT) and was the chair of ALA MAGERT (2005-2006). He was selected by the National Research Council and the Federal Geographic Data Committee’s Homeland Security Working Group to study and publish reports on “Licensing Geographic Data and Services” and “Guidelines for Providing Appropriate Access to Geospatial Data in Response to Security Concerns.”  He was born in Tibet and has lived and taught geography and cartography to high school and undergraduate students in India, Nepal, Kenya, and Sudan.

Lunch & Learn: Improving Wikipedia

Image representing Wikipedia as depicted in Cr...

Image via CrunchBase

Wikipedia, said David Goodman at the October 13 Lunch ‘n Learn seminar, is by far the most used online encyclopedia, and the most referenced source in the world, with more than 338 million unique visitors a month. It contains articles in more than 260 languages, has an impressive geographic reach, and extensive coverage of topics, currently with more than 16 million articles and 5 million illustrations and media files.

It owes its success as a modern, comprehensive, encyclopedia, and its challenges, to its five pillars. It is designed for its online environment, it has a neutral point of view (which sometimes requires multiple points of view), its content is free, and all involved should act in a respectful and civil manner. Beyond that, suggests the fifth pillar, Wikipedia does not have firm rules.

Number of articles on en.wikipedia.org Number of articles on en.wikipedia.org [Source: Wikipedia]

The staggering and unexpected growth, even to those close to the project, carries with it an inherent problem: the reliability of the information. Conventional methods of certifying information are not applicable: basic principles of the site are that anyone can edit, and decisions on content are made by consensus among whoever wishes to participate, rather than by any form of centralized editorial control or peer review. There is therefore considerable resistance to its use for serious purposes. Nevertheless it is inevitably being used for such purposes, including in the academic world. This imposes a responsibility on those working at the encyclopedia to try to upgrade and maintain the quality.

This responsibility has given rise to multiple layers of control , for preventing the inclusion of improper material, and evaluating the accuracy of what is included. In his talk, Goodman explained some of these procedures, and demonstrated them in action. Though they have an effect, he acknowledged that they  work erratically and unsystematically.

Their effectiveness depends upon a sufficient number of suitably qualified people participating in writing, screening, and upgrading the articles. Therefore, there are organized efforts to recruit qualified users to work in a systematic way on content in specific areas. There are informal workgroups of skilled amateur and professionals in some subject areas. And there are experiments where some college faculty use Wikipedia writing assignments in their courses.

Most successful method, says Goodman, is the individual participation of knowledgeable people. Most involved encounter certain barriers: an anti-elitist lack of respect for formal qualifications, the somewhat artificial prevailing style, the peculiarities of the interface, the difficulties in writing simultaneously for readers with a wide range of background, the impossibility of getting one’s own way with an article, the impossibility of stabilizing a finished article, and the lack of personal authorship for completed work–in short, the crowd-sourcing environment.  Goodman recognizes that Wikipedia will never be a medium for academic authorship. But it is an unmatchable medium for communicating knowledge to the widest possible audience. The barriers can be overcome with skill and patience, he insists, and the necessary abilities are the same as those for teaching a class of beginners.

Above all, he hopes that more will become involved with the writing projects. Some you you, he hopes, will also become addicted.

David Goodman David Goodman [Source: Wikipedia]

Speaker Bio: David Goodman is one of the volunteer administrators at Wikipedia, and Vice-President of the New York City chapter. David was previously Biological Sciences Bibliographer and Research Librarian at the Princeton University Library. He has a Ph.D in Biology from the University of California at Berkeley, and a MLS from Rutgers University. Goodman’s Wikipedia page contains a link to the notes he presented at the Lunch ‘n Learn talk.

A podcast of the presentation is also available.

Lunch & Learn: Archives and Manuscripts: Library Finding Aids with Daniel Santamaria

FAbook.jpgThe Department of Rare Books and Special Collections at the Princeton University Library holds world class archival and manuscripts collections. The Mudd Manuscript Library, with more than 35,000 linear feet of storage, holds two major collections: The Princeton University Archives and “Public Policy Papers” which include very significant collections in the areas of foreign policy, economics and economic development, Civil Liberties, Law and Jurisprudence.
Finding aids, descriptive inventories created by archival repositories in order to provide access to collections, serve as the entry points for scholars and researchers to discover and explore these collections. In order to provide a standard structure for finding aids, the archival community developed an international XML metadata standard, Encoded Archival Description (EAD) in 1995.
Comparable to AACR2 and MARC for bibliographic records, the content standard for Finding Aids has now been adopted by numerous institutions. EAD reflects the hierarchical nature of archival collections and provides a structure for describing the whole of a collection, as well as its components. And the standard supports flexible searching by collection, creator, biographies, title, call number, or topic.

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Lunch & Learn: Creative Commons: Guilt-Free Reuse of Others’ Work with Keith Gresham and David Hollander

Modern copyright law guarantees authors full rights over their work even without the inclusion of the © copyright notice. “All rights reserved” gives authors (for the length of their lives plus 70 years) the sole right to copy their works, to prepare derivatives or revisions of their works, to distribute or publish, or to perform or display their works in public.
Such unrestricted rights can create problems and generate fair-use confusion for members of the academic community who want to incorporate photographs, illustrations, music, video, and other forms of creative content into their own publications, lectures, presentations, and projects. Fair use may not infringe on copyright, and the factors used to determine what is and is not fair use include the purpose and character of the use, the nature of the copyrighted work, the amount of the work used, and the effect of such use upon the value of the copyrighted work.

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