Monthly Archives: May 2013

Week in Review – 31 May 2013

Revised Library Hours for Fall Term

The Dean has approved revised facility operating hours for the fall term as a response to our current and impending vacancies as well as the upcoming furlough. These hours will be in effect through the end of the fiscal year. We will revisit whether or not they need to be extended further based on our staffing at that time.

We will have normal facility hours through 18 August, though will be closed on A-Day (17 August).

Beginning 18 August, we will operate the following service hours:

Day Normal Hours New Amended Hours
Mondays 0700-2245 0700-2245
Tuesdays 0700-2245 0700-2245
Wednesdays 0700-2245 0700-2245
Thursdays 0700-2245 0700-2245
Fridays 0700-2100 0700-1630
Saturdays (non-football) 0700-2100 0900-1700
Saturdays (football) 1530-2100 1530-2100
Sundays 1100-2245 1500-2245

In addition, Special Collections and Archives will be open by appointment only through until July 1st. The collection will then close until the beginning of the term to complete the planned collection move into Bartlett Hall.

SHARP Stand Down Day

A reminder that all staff are required to participate in one of the two SHARP Stand Down days events this coming Tuesday 4 June. The first session will run from 0800-1200 and the second session will run from 1230-1630. I am still awaiting final confirmation of the location, but believe it to be Arnold Auditorium in Mahan Hall.

In addition, early next week we will complete a walkthrough of shared staff areas and offices to ensure that no material is visible that is against regulation or that creates a negative/hostile work environment, particularly as it relates to sexual harassment or assault. This is also by direction of the Secretary of Defense.

Budget / Furlough Update

Employees should have received copies of the Notice of Proposed Furlough today. Remaining employees will receive their memos on Monday. Employees have 14 days to reply to one of the Reply Officials.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
Friday
31 May 2013
Week in Review 0700-1630
Saturday
1 June 2013
CLOSED
Sunday
2 June 2013
1300-2100
Monday
3 June 2013
CLOSED
Tuesday
4 June 2013
SHARP Stand Down Day 0700-2100
Wednesday
5 June 2013
Dean’s Staff Meeting 0700-2100
Thursday
6 June 2013
All Library Staff Meeting 0700-2100
Friday
7 June 2013
Week in Review Alumni Golf Event 0700-1630

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

29APR-5MAY 6MAY-12MAY 13MAY-19MAY 20MAY-26MAY
Access Services
Items Charged Out 648 418 257 229
Gate Count 6,523 5,889 5,889 2,039
Administrative Services
DV Tours 0 0 0 1
Significant Events Hosted 4 2 1 2
Events/Meetings Attended 24 30 14 21
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 23 21 27 26
Library Instruction Sessions 0 0 0 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 0 0 0 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 91 130 104 76
Items Added – Digital 117 2,027 726 2
Items Added – GovDocs 180 69 86 54
Items Added – Other 0 23 0 0
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 90 204 74 129
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 44 27 35 41
Research Visits < 1 hour 7 2 15 58
Research Visits < 1 day 3 10 5 11
Research Visits > 1 day 0 0 2 0
Instruction Sessions 0 0 0 0
Cadets Taught 0 0 0 0
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 1,791 969 638 841
LibGuides Visits 500 453 268 279
Digital Collections Visits 344 233 2 19
Facebook Visits 17 18 N/A 16
Public Printer Prints 0 0 21 0
Public Printer Copies 0 1 1 16
Public Printer Scans 47 56 30 472

USMA Library Radar

Brief status updates on current and planned library initiatives. ★ indicates a 2012-13 objective.

Access Services
★ Communication Channels Beta Blog expanding Assigned 31-Mar-13
★ JH 2nd Floor Review Preparing next steps Active 30-Apr-13
Administration
ALSC Metrics Design Programming being done by Army Waiting 01-Feb-13
JH Security System Design Paused 31-May-13
Guide to Event Planning Reworking into digital product Assigned 31-May-13
★ New Employee On-Boarding Next step is review Assigned 31-May-13
Windowshade Repair Haig repair partially complete Waiting 31-May-13
Library Parking Space Awaiting DES Waiting 31-May-13
★ Gift SOP Final language complete Active 31-May-13
★ USMPS On hold Assigned 31-May-13
★ Gift / Needs Statements Planned 31-May-13
ConnectNY Annual Meeting Final planning underway Active 10-Jun-13
★ Mobile Infrastructure Waiting for Airwatch system Waiting 31-Aug-13
Fires of Hate Exhibit Dates selected for Apr-Jun 2014 Planned 15-Jan-14
Information Gateway
★ Evening Skills Clinics Spring slate underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ LibGuide Review Work underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ Embedded Liaisons Department work underway Assigned 31-May-13
IGD GS-09/11 Recruitment Internal announcement posted Waiting 31-May-13
★ Academic Support Statements Statement work underway Assigned 31-Jul-13
Materials Processing
★ Collection Inventory SOP Planned 28-Feb-13
★ Gov Docs Review Assigned 30-Apr-13
Withdrawal Policy Planned 31-May-13
★ CTC Digital Collections On hold pending repository Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Awaiting CPAC Action Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
Special Collections and Archives
★ Ring Case Biographies Initial planning underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ WP Authors Reception Planning for fall Assigned 31-May-13
★ Fee-For-Service Planned 31-May-13
★ Library History Exhibit Planned 31-May-13
SC&AD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Assigned 31-May-13
Bartlett Hall Move Re-awaiting funding Assigned 30-Jun-13
Systems Management
★ Discovery Layer Contract let Assigned 01-Mar-13
SMD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 01-Mar-13
★ Institutional Repository Planned 30-Apr-13
★ Security System Review Planned 30-Jun-13
★ Public Website Redesign Redesign underway Active 30-Jun-13

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “in 2006, Amherst decided to reserve the majority of its transfer slots for students coming from community college. In some ways, the decision represented potentially a more radical commitment to underprivileged students than online courses — as it came at an actual cost to the school, while online courses are highly profitable. Seven years later, Amherst president emeritus Anthony Marx argues claims the program has worked brilliantly, just as his administration had expected. Broadening its search for transfers to the roughly one million students who graduate from community college every year, “we could find amazing jewels that no one else is looking for,” he told an audience at a panel hosted by The Century Foundation on Thursday.” – How America’s 2-Tiered Education System Is Perpetuating Inequality – Emily Chertoff – The Atlantic
  • “Finding a book used to mean scouring the shelves at a bookstore, asking a bookseller for guidance or relying on recommendations from friends. But bookstores are dwindling, leaving publishers with a deep worry about the future of the business: with fewer brick-and-mortar options, how will readers discover books? One-day discounts are part of the answer. Promotions like the Kindle Daily Deal from Amazon and the Nook Daily Find from Barnes & Noble have produced extraordinary sales bumps for e-books, the kind that usually happen as a result of glowing book reviews or an author’s prominent television appearances.” – Daily Deals Propel Older E-Books to Popularity – NYTimes.com
  • “Fewer than one in eight of the city’s public high schools reported having a newspaper or print journalism class in an informal survey this month by city education officials, who do not officially track the information. Many of these newspapers have been reduced to publishing a few times a year because of shrinking staffs, budget cuts and a new focus on core academic subjects. Some no longer come out in print at all, existing only as online papers or as scaled-down news blogs. If New York is the media capital of the world, “you wouldn’t know it from student publications,” said Edmund J. Sullivan, executive director of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, which runs award competitions and workshops for high school journalists. He counts 7 of the city’s 560 public high schools as active members, down from about 85 in the 1970s. In comparison, 23 of the city’s private schools are participating.” – At School Papers, the Ink Is Drying Up – NYTimes.com
  • “The Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property has just released a new report that paints a dreary picture of a very evasive campaign to wage war against people who pirate ebooks and other forms of media. Instead of going through the court system, which costs a copious amount of time, energy, and money, the document advises to go after the root of the problem, the end user. One of the suggestions the document makes is, “If an unauthorized person accesses the information, a range of actions might then occur. For example, the file could be rendered inaccessible and the unauthorized user’s computer could be locked down, with instructions on how to contact law enforcement to get the password needed to unlock the account. Such measures do not violate existing laws on the use of the Internet, yet they serve to blunt attacks and stabilize a cyber incident to provide both time and evidence for law enforcement to become involved.” In essence, a pirate commits theft and has to report the theft to the police in order for them to regain access to their computer and likely to pay a fine.” – US Publishing Industry Might Soon Be Infecting eBook Pirates with Malware | Good E-Reader – eBooks, Publishing and Comic News
  • “To paraphrase Orwell, the English of the world wide web – loose, informal, and distressingly dyspeptic – is not really the kind people want to read in a book, a magazine, or even a newspaper. But there’s an assumption that that, because it’s part of the all-conquering internet, we cannot do a thing about it. Twenty-first century civilisation has been transformed in a way without precedent since the invention of moveable type. English prose, so one argument runs, must adapt to the new lexicon with all its grammatical violations and banality. Language is normative; it has – some will say – no choice. The violence the internet does to the English language is simply the cost of doing business in the digital age.” – George Orwell’s critique of internet English | Books | guardian.co.uk
  • “One of the areas Mr. Powell thinks the flagship hasn’t moved quickly enough on is putting courses at least partially online. To make his case with his breakfast buddies, some of whom are skeptical about Web-based courses, Mr. Powell recounted a conversation with a waitress named Dulce, on the Mexican border, who had signed up for an online course. “I told her the traditionalists would say you’re getting cheated, because you aren’t getting the classroom experience that helps you grow,” Mr. Powell said. “She stiffened and said, ‘You know what’s getting cheated? Not getting an education at all.’ – In the Name of Access, a Chairman Hammers for Change in Texas – Administration – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • “Coding will be the key to innovation in the future but many students, but especially low-income students, aren’t exposed to it,” she says. Tech moguls including Bill Gates, Google’s Eric Schmidt and Meg Whitman from Hewlett-Packard agree with her. They’ve thrown their weight behind Code.org, a new nonprofit whose “learn to code” videos have gone viral. They say that coding, programming and computer science will be the language of the 21st century. “In a world that’s increasingly run on technology, computer science is a liberal art that every student should be exposed to, regardless of their path in life,” says Code.org’s Hadi Partovi. Labor economists say Partovi might be right. By 2020, the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics is projecting that 778,000 computer jobs will be created. “That is substantial growth that is expected to outpace the growth of the overall economy,” says Martin Kohli, a chief regional economist there. Jan Cuny, who oversees the National Science Foundation’s CS10K initiative, a $40 million program aimed at getting more computer science teachers in high school classroom, says those projections are low. She estimates that 1.4 million jobs—and 60 percent of the STEM jobs of the future—will require computing skills. They are good jobs too. In 2012, according to the BLS, the average salary for a computer programmer was about $80,000. (By comparison, the average wage for American workers is $45,800.)” – Is Coding the New Second Language? | Ideas & Innovations | Smithsonian Magazine
  • “Libraries have historically been on the fore of linking books with data, and in the last 18 months, libraries have made some big moves. The New York Public Library was a sponsor of this hackathon, as well as an API partner. The Digital Collections API (one of the many projects NYPL Labs has been working on) allows developers to work with NYPL’s catalog data and records. “We think of books as books, and we forget that they are containers,” said David Riordan, product manager for NYPL Labs and hackathon mentor. “It’s the thought, ideas, construction, and organization. And finding ways to get into that is what librarians have always done. What does it look like if a library is a big suite of APIs? Not just books, but what about what’s in those books? Our shared cultural history is in these materials, and by finding ways to extract them, we make wholly new resources from which we can do research, tell stories, inspire ourselves, and discover our future.” – Why You Should Try Hacking Books ⚙ Co.Labs ⚙ code community
  • “Vitamin authentication. Dugan shows a pill that can be ingested and then battery-powered with stomach acid to produce an 18-bit internal signal. After that, the swallower’s whole body becomes a password.” – Google’s Regina Dugan Demos Electronic Tattoos & Ingestible Passwords – Liz Gannes – D11 – AllThingsD

Week in Review – 24 May 2013

IT Strategic Priorities for USMA

This year, BG Trainor asked that I help coordinate a discussion across the Academy on strategic priorities for technology. The experience has been a good one, gathering together individuals from  organizations like academic departments, ODIA, USMAPS, Admissions, etc. and pushing forward some conversation and thought about how technology currently works and doesn’t work at USMA. The library has a strong interest in technology infrastructure as a core service that many of our value-added services relies upon.

The result of our work this year is a list of priorities that we are putting forward to the Dean and Academy leadership. These are drawn from our own conversations and observations, as well as the input of many from across the Academy who have contributed to the process. The list is somewhat lengthy, but I thought I would share the top five that the group is putting forward as some of the most important and strategic areas we feel the Academy needs to focus on.

The group will continue next year to work with IETD on fleshing these out into tangible initiatives where appropriate.

Promote technologies which enable staff and faculty to perform their essential duties (education, research, etc.) with ease.

Staff and faculty will establish relationships with numerous individuals who are not members of the DA community and who operate with technological freedoms not necessarily granted within a DA network. There will also be situations, such as students on Semester Abroad, where the teaching mission will require tools which are not used in the typical classroom environment. The Academy must provide an infrastructure that facilitates flexible, diverse, reliable, and available client and enterprise services. Client services are technologies employed directly and frequently by individual customers for personal mission accomplishment (collaborative, authoring, distribution, and consumption tools). Enterprise services support institutional business processes that transcend individuals (workflow systems, messaging, database access and storage). Furthermore, the infrastructure must be scalable; i.e. as customer needs for service expand, the infrastructure must be able to accommodate growth without service interruption. Examples of progress toward this goal would be expanded and streamlined support for a range of technological solutions and services to support the educational mission (e.g. access to cloud-based services and a diversity of hardware and software tools).

Improve efforts to “enable” cadets (and faculty/staff) in their use of technology.

Since 1985 when plebes were first issued personal computers, the West Point model for literacy training has been to introduceinspire, and enable. We introduce technology survival skills in early courses: primarily math (spreadsheets and symbolic mathematics) and English (word processing).  We inspire through practice, illustration, and challenges to learn more about advanced capabilities of technology in IT105 (fundamentals of IT, computer programming, and advanced applications). We enable by providing ubiquitous, freely available technologies that are helpful, current, relevant, and appealing in an environment where appropriate technology use is modeled by leaders and valued by the institution. The greatest opportunity for improvement is in the “enable” phase of this model. Where once we led the Army and undergraduate education in this regard, today we lag. Digital literacy is not ubiquitous across the Academy, and we often assume a higher skill level among cadets and faculty than actually exists. Technology consumers become literate only in the technologies that are freely accessible for exploration and use. Cadets need flexible access to tools as they are developed and not years after their introduction into general consumer use.  Access to a variety of client services will provide exposure to these technologies. The ability to use new hardware platforms for daily business will also further this end. A proven good strategy is to explicitly encourage and enable senior faculty to set the example of “early adoption.” The rest of the Military Academy will follow. We should also revisit and ensure that our introduction to technology survival skills is effective and working as we intend. Development of additional, required training that would both address cadet awareness of locally-available resources as well as support for their transition into the Army should be a priority. Training efforts should also be maintained for faculty and staff to promote skills development and integration into the curriculum and administrative workflows. Adoption of classroom management systems that allow instructors to better control and guide technology use would be helpful.

Retain decentralized IT staffing to allow for greater discipline/mission specialization.

Technology is most effective when it is applied directly to the workflows it is designed to support. Decentralization of IT staff is a critical component in ensuring that discipline/mission-specific priorities are designed for and maintained. This is particularly true in a setting as diverse as the academic and administrative functions of USMA. This goal does not require action, but is an affirmation of the support structure in place. Deviation from this model, we believe, will result in a degraded ability to meet mission.

Provide an ever-present and capable data network.

We require access to information and data services that are ubiquitous and reliable. This includes secured access available via wired and wireless connections as well as unsecured access that is open to the general public for basic and limited use. Access to cell networks should also be provided throughout our central infrastructure which would include major academic facilities where coverage provided by external towers is spotty at best, and mostly non-existent. Access to networks for instrumentation and special-use equipment should be designed to maintain security and allow for easy transfer of critical data. Whether or not the circuits provided are procured through government, military, or commercial channels, the capabilities of networks should be varied and should provide a location for legal and mission-appropriate activity to occur. Network security via network access control is an absolute requirement and enforcement of clear, manageable policies regarding information use should be in place. The demand for high performance computing access and access to web-casting and webinars will likely continue to grow with awareness and lack of access to travel and internal budget dollars.  The pipeline for data transfer will need to grow significantly to accommodate this. Intranet data transfer rates of 20-100 Gb/sec and internet transfer rates in the 1-10 Gb/sec ranges should be targets for sustained rates of transfer. Examples of progress toward this goal would include wireless network expansion, the ability to support public users on our wireless networks, cell network expansion in academic facilities, and development of a standardized report that documents use and saturation of data networks.

Develop and maintain a diverse ecosystem of operating systems, platforms, and devices.

We require a central IT infrastructure that can support multiple operating systems and platforms, recognizing that there are many contributing factors that may require specific client systems and infrastructure. Decisions regarding deployment of operating systems and platforms should be made based primarily on mission requirements. Mobile and Bring-Your-Own devices should be supported with appropriate access to network resources permitted by network access control systems. Mobile and tablet devices should be fully supported for mission work in both academic and administrative settings. Virtual systems should be widely available both as central enterprise servers and as client workstations in laboratory settings. Examples of progress toward this goal would be expanded support for non-traditional platforms such as Linux, Unix, Apple (OS X and iOS), Android, tablet devices, cell phones, wearable technology, etc.).

New Library Endowment/Collections Given

This afternoon, we are very pleased that a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Dr. Stephen E. Draper and the West Point Association of Graduates that establishes a new endowment to support library initiatives as well named collections for Dr. Draper focusing on water, natural resources, and law and for his wife Ms. Lucy Draper on the history of women at West Point. We plan to receive these collections later this summer and will share more about them at that time. Special thank yous to the AOG and Suzanne Christoff for working with Dr. & Mrs. Draper to bring this gift to fruition.

Budget / Furlough Update

Based on guidance given previously, we should expect initial notices of the impending furlough action to be received in the next week. Division chiefs are working on internal plans for staffing. I am putting forward a revised schedule for building hours for fall term that would have us maintain normal hours with the following major exceptions: Fridays close at 1630 instead of 2100; Saturdays open 0900-1700 instead of 0700-2100; and Sundays open 1500-2245 instead of 1100-2245. This would give us just one shift on Saturdays and Sundays. There are variances to this plan due to home football games. The Dean will need to approve these changes before they are final.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
Friday
24 May 2013
Week in Review 0700-1630
Saturday
25 May 2013
Graduation CLOSED
Sunday
26 May 2013
1300-2100
Monday
27 May 2013
Memorial Day CLOSED
Tuesday
28 May 2013
CLDT Begins 0700-2100
Wednesday
29 May 2013
 Division Heads 0700-2100
Thursday
30 May 2013
 SHARP Training COL Ryan Retirement 0700-2100
Friday
31 May 2013
Week in Review 0700-1630

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

22APR-28APR 29APR-5MAY 6MAY-12MAY 13MAY-19MAY
Access Services
Items Charged Out 803 648 418 257
Gate Count 5,545 6,523 5,889 3,236
Administrative Services
DV Tours 0 0 0 0
Significant Events Hosted 2 4 2 1
Events/Meetings Attended 22 24 30 14
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 48 23 21
Library Instruction Sessions 0 0 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 0 0 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 32 91 130 104
Items Added – Digital 21 117 2,027 726
Items Added – GovDocs 111 180 69 86
Items Added – Other 0 0 23 0
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 93 90 204 74
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 40 44 27 35
Research Visits < 1 hour 21 7 2 15
Research Visits < 1 day 2 3 10 5
Research Visits > 1 day 0 0 0 2
Instruction Sessions 1 0 0 0
Cadets Taught 13 0 0 0
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 2,290 1,791 969 638
LibGuides Visits 790 500 453 268
Digital Collections Visits 409 344 233 2
Facebook Visits 32 17 18 N/A
Public Printer Prints 0 0 0 21
Public Printer Copies 1 0 1 1
Public Printer Scans 80 47 56 30

USMA Library Radar

Brief status updates on current and planned library initiatives. ★ indicates a 2012-13 objective.

Access Services
★ Communication Channels Beta Blog expanding Assigned 31-Mar-13
★ JH 2nd Floor Review Preparing next steps Active 30-Apr-13
Administration
ALSC Metrics Design Programming being done by Army Waiting 01-Feb-13
JH Security System Design Paused 31-May-13
Guide to Event Planning Reworking into digital product Assigned 31-May-13
★ New Employee On-Boarding Next step is review Assigned 31-May-13
Windowshade Repair Haig repair partially complete Waiting 31-May-13
Library Parking Space Awaiting DES Waiting 31-May-13
★ Gift SOP Final language complete Active 31-May-13
★ USMPS On hold Assigned 31-May-13
★ Gift / Needs Statements Planned 31-May-13
ConnectNY Annual Meeting Final planning underway Active 10-Jun-13
★ Mobile Infrastructure Waiting for Airwatch system Waiting 31-Aug-13
Fires of Hate Exhibit Dates selected for Apr-Jun 2014 Planned 15-Jan-14
Information Gateway
★ Evening Skills Clinics Spring slate underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ LibGuide Review Work underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ Embedded Liaisons Department work underway Assigned 31-May-13
IGD GS-09/11 Recruitment Internal announcement posted Waiting 31-May-13
★ Academic Support Statements Statement work underway Assigned 31-Jul-13
Materials Processing
★ Collection Inventory SOP Planned 28-Feb-13
★ Gov Docs Review Assigned 30-Apr-13
Withdrawal Policy Planned 31-May-13
★ CTC Digital Collections On hold pending repository Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Awaiting CPAC Action Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
Special Collections and Archives
★ Ring Case Biographies Initial planning underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ WP Authors Reception Planning for fall Assigned 31-May-13
★ Fee-For-Service Planned 31-May-13
★ Library History Exhibit Planned 31-May-13
SC&AD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Assigned 31-May-13
Bartlett Hall Move Re-awaiting funding Assigned 30-Jun-13
Systems Management
★ Discovery Layer Contract let Assigned 01-Mar-13
SMD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 01-Mar-13
★ Institutional Repository Planned 30-Apr-13
★ Security System Review Planned 30-Jun-13
★ Public Website Redesign Redesign underway Active 30-Jun-13

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “In a recent conversation, she explained that wired and wireless connections, building blocks of modern life, are now essentially controlled by four companies. Comcast and Time Warner have a complete lock on broadband in the markets they control, covering some 50 million American homes, while Verizon and AT&T own 64 percent of cellphone service. Don’t get her started on the Comcast-NBCUniversal merger unless you have some time on your hands.” – Telecom’s Big Players Hold Back the Future – NYTimes.com
  • “We must concede that though we can maintain the paths of URIs over the lifetime of a service, most domain names are inevitably ephemeral. A two year registration to host a joke, a fifteen year registration to build a company. All will be resold. What to do? We need to not fight the fragility. We need to look at the very heart of the web, the directory that connects the names of our services to the servers they run on, and we need to apply the concept of the Wayback Machine to it. We need temporal DNS, maintainable by librarians to keep the domains of the past connected to their archived futures. Your DNS provider as Time Lord*; rather than searching for what Geocities was like, picking a date at the DNS level could route all of your internet traffic through 1998.” – Building the Great Libraries of the Internet with a DNS time machine · Ben Ward
  • “Most are driven mainly by curiosity rather than the desire to show off their certificates to any potential employer, and none has paid for a verified certificate. Consider Anna Nachesa, a 42-year-old single mother in a village near Amsterdam who logs on to MOOCs for several hours each night after dinner with her teenage kids. She has always found TV boring, she says, and for her, MOOCs replace reading books. She is a physicist by training, with a degree from Moscow State University, and she works as a software developer. “This stuff is actually addictive,” she says. In some ways the lure is like Everest: Some want to climb it to see if they can. “The Dutch have the proverb ‘If you never shoot, you already missed,’” she says.” – What Professors Can Learn From ‘Hard Core’ MOOC Students – Technology – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • ““Let me state this for the record: the Internet is not dead. Digital will not disappear. Print will not kill the web.” These statements are laid out in bold red, right on the white cover of Fully Booked: Ink on Paper, a new hardback from Gestalten, and it’s such a familiar trope that it takes a moment to register the clever turnaround. The rest of the essay, which extends for pages into the interior, further imagines a world in which an emerging print media model threatens a long-standing digital world with new concepts such as linear narratives and the gift of space, smell, and tactility. It’s a nice setup for a publication promoting the uniquely physical experience of tangible publications.” – 1 | A Book That Celebrates The Tactile Thrills Of Print | Co.Design: business innovation design
  • “My point here is that technology has a tendency to create its own norms. The classic example is the automobile — a technology which kills more than 30,000 Americans every year. From the 1930s through the 1990s, societal norms about who roads belonged to, and what people should do on them, were turned on their head thanks to the new technology. The dangerous new activity allowed by the new technology became the privileged norm, to the point at which just about all other road-based activity — and roads have been around for thousands of years, remember, since long before the automobile — essentially ceased to exist. Eventually, we reached the point at which elected representatives were happy saying that if a bicyclist gets killed by a car, it’s the bicyclist’s fault for being on the road in the first place. If Google Glass — and wearable computing more generally — takes off and fulfills its potential, it will change society’s norms about what is public and what is private. It is therefore entirely rational, whatever you think of the set of norms we have right now, to assume that they will end up moving towards something more well disposed towards the new technology.” – How technology redefines norms : Columbia Journalism Review
  • “Today, your library might be able to lend you an e-reader, and it might have quite a few e-books, but I’d venture to say that the scenario of users ably borrowing devices and e-content from a library, academic or public, is rare. You can borrow a really nice $2,000 laptop, and look at e-books through a browser, but a $200 reader with an e-book? That’s unlikely. Yet this should be simple. Have you bought an e-book from a major corporate provider like Amazon? In under a minute, the book will be in your hands. Even your grandmother can do it! Have you borrowed an e-book from your local public library? If you haven’t, try to do so. If you have, you may have had the same experience most people do: the complexity is beyond mind-boggling. Teaching grandma UNIX seems easier. And even if your academic library is providing e-books, have you seen much choice in the available popular titles? It’s no wonder library users think: “Nice job getting all those articles in your catalog, but why can’t you figure out how to get them on my e-reader like the rest of the world can?” – We Love E-Books! (EDUCAUSE Review) | EDUCAUSE.edu
  • “BookStats found that trade publishing overall saw significant growth since 2011, despite the closures of many brick-and-mortar stores during the same period. Not surprisingly, publishers’ revenue from brick and mortar retail fell 7 percent, but more than made up the ground online, growing 21 percent. Overall, trade net revenue rose 6.9 percent to just over $15 billion in 2012. The number of books sold also grew, by 8.1 percent, to $2.291 billion. Ebooks make up a fifth of the trade market, according to BookStats, and were one of the growth drivers, growing by nearly half (44 percent) to over $3 billion in net revenue and grew almost as much in number of titles sold (42.8 percent).” – Ebooks, Online Drive Trade Sales Growth
  • “Bexar County’s so-called BiblioTech is a low-cost project with big ambitions. Its first branch will be in a relatively poor district on the city of San Antonio’s South Side. It will have 100 e-readers on loan, and dozens of screens where the public will be able to browse, study, and learn digital skills. However it’s likely most users will access BiblioTech’s initial holding of 10,000 digital titles from the comfort of their homes, way out in the Texas hinterland. It will be a truly bookless library – although that is not a phrase much to the liking of BiblioTech’s project co-ordinator, Laura Cole. She prefers the description “digital library” – after all, there will be books there, but in digital form.” – BBC News – Paperless public libraries switch to digital
  • “In particular, he said, elementary schools will increasingly adopt less disruptive styles of blended learning that rotate online learning activities into a student’s schedule but still maintain the basic structure of a traditional teacher-led classroom. For example, schools will continue to “flip” their classrooms with videos (from Khan Academy or other sources) students can watch online, but mostly rely on classroom teachers to shape the experience. At the middle school and high school levels, where students tend to have more personalized, modular schedules, he said, the school setting will remain in place but the classroom structure will be upended. In those grades, educators will increasingly adopt more disruptive blended learning models. For example, students looking for more advanced subjects or languages not offered at their school could supplement their in-school experience with online classes – even massive open online courses – that barely involve offline instruction.” – Clay Christensen takes closer look at how online learning will disrupt K-12 education — Tech News and Analysis
  • “The value of adaptive learning is unquestionable in every classroom. Teaching is hard—it requires working with 30 little minds, each moving at a different pace and learning in their own way. Optimizing the classroom to maximize each student’s experience is exactly the sort of thing software can provide teachers and their schools.” – These two charts make the case for iPads in every classroom – Quartz
  • “The medicine of our time is purported to be open information. The medicine comes in many bottles: open software, free online education, European pirate parties, Wikileaks, social media, and endless variations of the above. The principle of making information free seems, at first glance, to spread the power of information out of elite bubbles to benefit everyone. Unfortunately, although no one realized it beforehand, the medicine turns out to be poison.” – Free information, as great as it sounds, will enslave us all – Quartz
  • “The creation of the major shows that even financially secure institutions like Colorado College are not immune from a growing call by students, parents and policymakers to create a better connection between what happens in the classroom and potential careers. From career services to internships to new programs, even elite institutions are signaling that career preparation is a key component of their mission. But the new program, and the way Colorado College officials are talking about it, is also reflective of a shift in the way liberal arts colleges sell themselves. Amid much hand-wringing about what the future holds for such institutions (including numerous books, columns and conferences), some leaders have begun to formulate a different argument.” – Colorado College’s education major challenges whether disciplines still define the liberal arts | Inside Higher Ed

Week in Review – 17 May 2013

SOP for Hours of Operation

In my experience, hours of operation for academic libraries are generally “set it and forget it” sorts of things. Semesters follow regularly routine schedules, and events such as breaks are spelled out usually a minimum of 3-4 years in advance. Here at West Point, we have a number of unique parameters in play when it comes to hours of operation, which add up to a requirement for a little more flexibility. We need to balance both a need for long-term planning (particularly for events that need to use library facilities), with a need for short-term adjustment/accommodation (compressed/altered class schedules). Our student body has schedules that are much more rigid (e.g. mandatory football games that negate the need for library service). This past year we had last minute adjustments to the fall semester TEE schedule and the sequester brought a very real possibility of changes to the academic calendar. The upcoming furloughs will impact facility hours in some way. In short, we need a system whereby we can be forward-looking to set hours for major events in the future, yet adaptive to adjust to whatever may pop up.

The draft SOP linked below attempts to strike that balance whereby we will have a regular process of setting tentative hours followed by a parallel process to harden those hours as the time draws closer. A new calendar in SharePoint will serve as our authoritative calendar and we will be working to more systematically communicate these hours to those with facility reservations. We are also looking at more permanent signage to be posted near the main entrances to the building. As always, comments are welcome.

SOP – Hours of Operation

Recruitment Update

An internal announcement for one of our IGD vacancies was posted today: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/343841000. Please refer any qualified candidates to the ad.

Budget / Furlough Update

The Secretary of Defense announced furloughs of up to eleven days this past week. We will be working to finalize a master library plan for staffing and will then be asking divisions to make specific plans for their areas as well.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
Friday
17 May 2013
TEEs Week in Review  COL Ressler Retirement Ceremony 0700-2100
Saturday
18 May 2013
USMAPS Graduation 0700-1500
Sunday
19 May 2013
 Armed Forces Day CLOSED
Monday
20 May 2013
Class Reunions SHARP Training 0700-2100
Tuesday
21 May 2013
Class Reunions / Alumni Review / STAP Begins Division Heads  AOG Distinguished Graduate Award 0700-2100
Wednesday
22 May 2013
Class Reunions 0700-2100
Thursday
23 May 2013
ELDP Graduation 0700-2100
Friday
24 May 2013
Graduation Review and Banquet Week in Review 0700-1630

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

15APR-21APR 22APR-28APR 29APR-5MAY 6MAY-12MAY
Access Services
Items Charged Out 1,129 803 648 418
Gate Count 6,662 5,545 6,523 5,889
Administrative Services
DV Tours 1 0 0 0
Significant Events Hosted 3 2 4 2
Events/Meetings Attended 26 22 24 30
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 65 48 23 21
Library Instruction Sessions 2 0 0 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 19 0 0 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 83 32 91 130
Items Added – Digital 7,561 21 117 2,027
Items Added – GovDocs 113 111 180 69
Items Added – Other 0 0 0 23
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 103 93 90 204
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 53 40 44 27
Research Visits < 1 hour 10 21 7 2
Research Visits < 1 day 2 2 3 10
Research Visits > 1 day 0 0 0 0
Instruction Sessions 0 1 0 0
Cadets Taught 0 13 0 0
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 2,622 2,290 1,791 969
LibGuides Visits 817 790 500 453
Digital Collections Visits 264 409 344 233
Facebook Visits 21 32 17 18
Public Printer Prints 0 0 0 0
Public Printer Copies 20 1 0 1
Public Printer Scans 102 80 47 56

USMA Library Radar

Brief status updates on current and planned library initiatives. ★ indicates a 2012-13 objective.

Access Services
★ Communication Channels Beta Blog expanding Assigned 31-Mar-13
★ JH 2nd Floor Review Preparing next steps Active 30-Apr-13
Administration
ALSC Metrics Design Programming being done by Army Waiting 01-Feb-13
JH Security System Design Paused 31-May-13
Guide to Event Planning Reworking into digital product Assigned 31-May-13
★ New Employee On-Boarding Next step is review Assigned 31-May-13
Windowshade Repair Haig repair partially complete Waiting 31-May-13
Library Parking Space Awaiting DES Waiting 31-May-13
★ Gift SOP Language in draft Active 31-May-13
★ USMPS On hold Assigned 31-May-13
★ Gift / Needs Statements Planned 31-May-13
ConnectNY Annual Meeting Final planning underway Active 10-Jun-13
★ Mobile Infrastructure Waiting for Airwatch system Waiting 31-Aug-13
Fires of Hate Exhibit Dates selected for Apr-Jun 2014 Planned 15-Jan-14
Information Gateway
★ Evening Skills Clinics Spring slate underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ LibGuide Review Work underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ Embedded Liaisons Department work underway Assigned 31-May-13
IGD GS-09/11 Recruitment Internal announcement posted Waiting 31-May-13
★ Academic Support Statements Statement work underway Assigned 31-Jul-13
Materials Processing
★ Collection Inventory SOP Planned 28-Feb-13
★ Gov Docs Review Assigned 30-Apr-13
Withdrawal Policy Planned 31-May-13
★ CTC Digital Collections On hold pending repository Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Awaiting CPAC Action Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
Special Collections and Archives
★ Ring Case Biographies Initial planning underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ WP Authors Reception Planning for fall Assigned 31-May-13
★ Fee-For-Service Planned 31-May-13
★ Library History Exhibit Planned 31-May-13
SC&AD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Assigned 31-May-13
Bartlett Hall Move Re-awaiting funding Assigned 30-Jun-13
Systems Management
★ Discovery Layer Contract let Assigned 01-Mar-13
SMD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 01-Mar-13
★ Institutional Repository Planned 30-Apr-13
★ Security System Review Planned 30-Jun-13
★ Public Website Redesign Redesign underway Active 30-Jun-13

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “Since the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau highlighted a year ago that student debt had surpassed the $1 trillion threshold, others have warned about the impact on the broader economy. Last year, the Treasury Department’s Office of Financial Research described how student debt might impact demand for mortgage credit. The Federal Reserve Board’s open market committee discussed whether student debt is impacting household spending. And just a few weeks ago, the Financial Stability Oversight Council discussion of student debt in its annual report added to the chorus.” – Excessive student loan debt drains economic engine – Rohit Chopra – POLITICO.com
  • “I was taking an advanced calculus class and my instructor was reputed to be a fabulous researcher, but he barely spoke English. He was a very boring and bad teacher and I was absolutely lost and in despair. So I went to the campus tutoring centre and they had Betamax tapes of a professor who had won teaching awards. Basically I sat with those tapes and took class there. But I still had to go to the other one and sat there and wanted to kill myself.I thought at that time, in the future, why wouldn’t you have the most entertaining professor, the one with the proven track record of getting knowledge into people’s heads? We’re still not quite there. In university you’re still likely to be in a large lecture hall with a very boring professor, and everyone knows it’s not working very well. It’s not even the best use of that professor’s time or the audience.” – Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales argues the boring university lecture will be the first casualty of the online education revolution.
  • “The 14-year-old allegedly lay on the floor for several minutes and then — at least according to police — helped his mom with her Web search.” – After teen is shot, mom allegedly goes first to WebMD | Technically Incorrect – CNET News
  • “Mr. Stripling said there had been a sea change in the last few years, with the rich getting richer and some pay packages exceeding not just $1 million, but $2 million. Deferred compensation agreements can increase pay drastically, as was the case with Mr. Gogue, whose pay went from $720,000 to $2.5 million in a single year when he completed a five-year contract. But the biggest growth last year, Mr. Stripling said, was in the $600,000 to $700,000 range, a category that included 28 chief executives, up from only 13 the previous year.” – University Presidents Are Prospering, Study Finds – NYTimes.com
  • “As every aspect of our daily lives has become hyperconnected, some people on the cutting edge of tech are trying their best to push it back a few feet. Keeping their phone in their pocket. Turning off their home Wi-Fi at night or on weekends. And reading books on paper, rather than pixels.” – Disruptions: Even the Tech Elites Leave Gadgets Behind – NYTimes.com
  • “I never allow myself to have an opinion on anything that I don’t know the other side’s argument better than they do.” – The Work Required To Have An Opinion
  • “We don’t realize that our society and our democracy ultimately rest on the stability of middle-class jobs. When I talk to libertarians and socialists, they have this weird belief that everybody’s this abstract robot that won’t ever get sick or have kids or get old. It’s like everybody’s this eternal freelancer who can afford downtime and can self-fund until they find their magic moment or something. The way society actually works is there’s some mechanism of basic stability so that the majority of people can outspend the elite so we can have a democracy. That’s the thing we’re destroying, and that’s really the thing I’m hoping to preserve. So we can look at musicians and artists and journalists as the canaries in the coal mine, and is this the precedent that we want to follow for our doctors and lawyers and nurses and everybody else? Because technology will get to everybody eventually.” – Jaron Lanier: The Internet destroyed the middle class – Salon.com
  • “Our age elevates the precision-tooled power of the algorithm over flawed human judgment. From web search to marketing and stock-trading, and even education and policing, the power of computers that crunch data according to complex sets of if-then rules is promised to make our lives better in every way. Automated retailers will tell you which book you want to read next; dating websites will compute your perfect life-partner; self-driving cars will reduce accidents; crime will be predicted and prevented algorithmically. If only we minimise the input of messy human minds, we can all have better decisions made for us. So runs the hard sell of our current algorithm fetish.” – Steven Poole – On algorithms
  • “It’s time to stop thinking of computer programming as a specialty subject. Schools should respect it as a fundamental skill.” – Why High Schools Should Treat Computer Programming Like Algebra – Jordan Weissmann – The Atlantic
  • “If most top colleges wanted to be truly equitable, they could not be with their current business model. There is not a golden pot of low-income applicants that schools want but are failing to reach. Instead, many schools don’t want more low-income students because they won’t be able to pay for them without a major overhaul of school funding practices. Outside of the handful of super-elite universities with fortress endowments, colleges’ finances are currently designed around enrolling a disproportionately high number of high-income students. These schools could not afford to support more low-income or middle-income students absent either a huge increase in tuition, a commensurate reduction in spending, or a dramatic change in public funding. In fact, schools are already moving away from a more equitable system. Colleges actively recruit “full pay” students who can attend and will not need financial aid. A 2011 survey by Inside Higher Ed found that about 35 percent of admissions directors at 4-year institutions, particularly public colleges, had increased their efforts to target “full pay” students. Far from wanting to enroll more low-income students, colleges recruit more affluent ones who will pay full price to attend. A follow-up survey of college business officers found that the most common strategy to deal with financial challenges in the next few years was to “raise net tuition revenue.” More than 7 in 10 college CFOs cited this answer. In other words, schools are becoming more reliant on the inequality in the system than ever before.” – Why American Colleges Are Becoming a Force for Inequality – Josh Freedman – The Atlantic
  • “College enrollment in the spring-2013 term dropped by 2.3 percent compared with the same term a year ago, according to a report released on Thursday by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center. Four-year, for-profit institutions saw the sharpest enrollment decline among higher-education sectors tracked in the report, with a fall of 8.7 percent. The report describes declines in every sector but four-year, private nonprofit institutions, whose spring-2013 enrollment grew by half a percentage point compared with the previous year.” – College Enrollment Fell by 2.3 Percent This Spring, Report Says – The Ticker – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • “Changing the delivery system might serve to make private education both more affordable and more different, and signs of such change are already evident, but rarely in the traditional nonprofit portions of the private sector. Instead, the boldest innovations are coming from entrepreneurs, most of them profit-seeking and most of them delivering instruction (and more) via technology rather than face-to-face in brick buildings that are open just six or eight hours a day for 180 or so days a year. Or elite universities — the ones that are still thriving and would continue to thrive without these changes — are, themselves, innovating — mostly for students other than their own. The MITs and Stanfords are teaming up with the Courseras and Udacitys — educational technology companies specializing in online education — to offer online courses to thousands. Udacity has put a toe into the K-12 waters, both by partnering with local school systems and by inviting students to enroll directly in its college-level courses. Nor is it likely to stop there. Indeed, I expect “St. Paul’s math” and “Dalton’s literature” in time to echo across the land, too. If current trends continue, we’re going to see a bi-modal system develop, with public schools (including charter schools) and ultra-elite private schools monopolizing the education space as the plethora of smaller private and parochial schools that once fell between them gradually fade away.” – Why Private Schools Are Dying Out – Chester E. Finn Jr. – The Atlantic
  • “A recent survey of nearly 35,000 eight to 16-year-olds by the U.K.’s National Literacy Trust found that for the first time, more kids are reading via electronic devices than traditional books. A full 52 percent preferred reading books on a tablet or other electronic device, while in comparison, only 32 percent preferred traditional books. The remaining 16 percent had no preference or said they don’t like to read.” – Death of Traditional Books? Kids Prefer Reading Via Screen | Education on GOOD
  • “Online education strips away all of those expenses except for the cost of the professor’s time and experience. It sounds perfect, an alignment of technology, social need and limited resources. So why do so many people believe that it is a deeply flawed solution? Because it means massive swaths of higher education is about to change. Technology has disrupted many industries; now it’s about to do the same to higher ed.” – College Is Going Online, Whether We Like It Or Not – Zachary Karabell – The Atlantic

Library Website Update

The library website remains offline due to a security incident. The server is being rebuilt and should be available to be made available today, however it cannot be turned on without approval from security teams upstream of USMA. It may be available tomorrow, though likely only on the local network. We’ll have another update on Monday.

Week in Review – 10 May 2013

The Literal Week in Review

Back before I was in a leadership position I remember meeting and talking with the then Associate Director for Library Services at the Library of Congress Deanna Marcum who discussed one way she worked to keep staff in the loop regarding the things that she was working on and dealing with throughout her week. She did that with a weekly email update. That practice is something I have tried to stick with over the years, though I find it perhaps just a beneficial for me as for others as a chance to think about what has been happening and what is coming up.

My take on the update has usually been more topical, talking about a particular initiative that is actively being worked on, or summarizing some work that has been recently completed. This week, I thought I’d dive down at a lower level and list out a more granular look at what I was up to this week. The end of the semester always brings plenty of activity and this week has lived up to that standard 🙂 So below is a list of work-related activities for this week (Sunday-Saturday). Kudos if you make it all the way through the week!

Sunday, 5 May

  • 1300 – Start going through news updates. I spend a fair amount of time doing this, but I think it is important for strategic thinking and particularly understanding changes in education, libraries, government, military, and technology. I routinely monitor more than 650 sources on topics like Business, Creativity, Education, General News, Government, Libraries, Media, Military, Politics, Science, Software, Technology, Thought, and Visualization. I curate items of interest to a blog from which I further cull items for the Food for Thought section (down below)
  • 1400 – HI 105 TEE prep work … preparing draft essay questions for consideration by the full group of instructors and beginning to look at my instructor-specific section.
  • 1530 – Library Objectives … review and compile a first draft from divisional input received the previous week
  • 1700 – Wrap for the day

Monday, 6 May

  • 0755 – Arrive Library
  • 0800 – Daily Operations Meeting in Admin. We meet each morning to do a brief overview of anything that requires coordination that day. (Topics include: Event expected in Haig today … Shades not lowered properly after weekend event … Air handling not appearing to be working … Shelving contract funded)
  • 0815 – Office work. Monday mornings are generally set aside for preparing for the week, particularly for class as needed. Specific tasks worked on included checking in with overnight news … emailing TEE questions to HI 105 course director … archiving USMA email … certifying time cards … preparing two lessons for the week … writing a quiz … continuing work on library objectives … updating weekly statistics … answering email (receive average of 50 messages daily requiring some sort of action) Email topics included, TEE week snacks, weekly statistics from divisions, donor correspondence, proposed database adjustments, ConnectNY Annual Meeting business, ATAAPS leave requests, ConnectNY invoicing, library staffing for Memorial Day)
  • 1150 – Lunch
  • 1240 – Prepare for afternoon meetings.
  • 1300 – Meet with Pam Hawks, intern to do an exit interview as she has completed her work … discuss her impressions of the library and the internship. Took delivery of her final digital files for the terrace interpretative display project.
  • 1345 – More email
  • 1425 – Meeting with LTC Ohlson and LTC Jensen from CEP. Library, CEP, and IID will host the Dean’s Recognition Ceremony on 21 June. We discuss initial tasks and planning assignments.
  • 1445 – Work on thank you letters for recent donations … additional prep work for classes this week … conversation on budget planning with Melinda.
  • 1630 – Heading home to swap kid duty.
  • 1700 – News review from the day.
  • 1745 – Wrap
  • 2045 – Work on reviewing language for proposed new endowment for the library … new language finally received. Draft email to donor introducing changes.
  • 2130 – News and blogging
  • 2215 – Wrap

Tuesday, 7 May

  • 0745 – Arrive Library
  • 0800 – Daily Operations meeting. Topics include: Light use of Haig Room … Shades left down in the Haig Room on Sunday because the weather was nice … Discussed pulling together an estimate for shade repair/replacement … Discussed planning for Dean’s Recognition Ceremony.
  • 0815 – News / Email / Daily Agenda Planning (Email topics of the day include, lost key for the Haig Room, upcoming CFE luncheon, library noise as noted in the AOC report, Supt request for Howitzer support, reviewing potential TEE questions, SC&AD shelving award, new LibGuide standards)
  • 0900 – Weekly Check-in with David / MPD … Discussed review of titles for binding, change of serials vendor, thoughts on discovery platforms, and library objectives.
  • 0930 – Prepare slides for Dean’s Meeting on Wednesday
  • 1000 – Weekly Check-in with Dan / IGD … Discussed objectives … information literacy assessment … liaison assignments for summer/fall.
  • 1105 – Weekly Check-in with Suzanne / SC&AD … Discussed potential endowment gift, move planning, ongoing reference items, summer hours planning.
  • 1145 – Email
  • 1200 – Lunch
  • 1210 – Off to Meeting in Thayer for HI 105 and HI 108 instructors to discuss Plebe History writing program … walked through the opportunities and challenges as observed this year.
  • 1315 – Back in the library … quick prepare for Heads Meeting
  • 1330 – Division Heads … review of proposed objectives … trimmed back the list a bit … divisional updates as reported in the minutes.
  • 1435 – Back in office … final prep for class.
  • 1450 – Off to Thayer for class
  • 1505 – HI 105 Lesson 39 … gave writ … discussed TEE and did some TEE prep. Lecture / Discussion on Ford, Carter, and Reagan presidencies.
  • 1605 – Back in the library … brief conversation with Melinda on budget items and outstanding contracts.
  • 1615 – LTC from DEP to discuss their use of fifth floor for their departmental awards during Grad Week.
  • 1635 – Email and clean off desk
  • 1700 – Head home (and decide on the drive to do a log for this week’s Week in Review)
  • 1940 – News
  • 2015 – Blogging then initial planning for document to be prepared tomorrow for new Supt.
  • 2110 – Review of discovery platform proposal
  • 2130 – Review of library objectives following division heads discussion today
  • 2200 – Type up day log for Saturday-Tuesday.
  • 2245 – Wrap

Wednesday, 8 May

  • 0745 – Arrive Library … Pam and Shalanda out
  • 0800 – Daily Ops Meeting … Discussed event in Haig Room, upcoming DEP grad week event.
  • 0810 – Final preparation of draft objectives … emailed to staff
  • 0830 – Preparation for later meetings, particular web/communications team.
  • 0900 – Weekly Check-in with Christine / SMD … discussed discovery layers, print management, Konica authentication issues, proximity card system issues, website redesign.
  • 0940 – Additional work on website planning for later meeting.
  • 1000 – Cadet AI for upcoming TEE
  • 1025 – Depart for meeting with Dr. Blair in Taylor Hall
  • 1030 – Weekly Check-in with Dr. Blair … discussing hours for Memorial Day, review of discovery project, introduction of draft objectives, planning for iPad acquisition and print management.
  • 1100 – Dean’s Weekly Staff Call … library brief discusses hours for Memorial Day, Archives shelving contract, upcoming ConnectNY meeting, and lack of CPAC support in hiring.
  • 1205 – Discussion with COL Dodge re: purchase of iPads for the library and print management.
  • 1215 – Meeting in Thayer to prepare TEE questions for HI 105.
  • 1255 – Drop by office to pickup documents for web meeting.
  • 1300 – Web/Communications Team Meeting … reviewed edits to our new Discover page, ongoing work on our Get Help tab and began conversations on a page highlighting services by user group (cadets, faculty, community, public).
  • 1405 – Review email (Topics today include: Library Memorial Day hours, ConnectNY elections, Gift of MacArthur address for the Honor Kiosk, CBT Library brief, TEE planning)
  • 1415 – Discussion with Melinda regarding outstanding contracts for collection analysis, Bartlett Hall security system, iPads.
  • 1430 – Work on brief for LTG Caslen on USMA Library (while munching on lunch)
  • 1520 – Prepare iPad pilot survey for cadets in HI 105
  • 1535 – Grade HI 105 writs
  • 1550 – HI 105 Lesson 40 lecture review
  • 1600 – ConnectNY teleconference for June Meeting Planning
  • 1630 – Enter grades online into AMS
  • 1645 – Email
  • 1700 – Brief news review
  • 1710 – Head home
  • 2030 – News review/blogging
  • 2130 – TEE prep review
  • 2215 – Log day
  • 2230 – Wrap

Thursday, 9 May

  • 0745 – Arrive Library … Pam out.
  • 0800 – Daily Ops Meeting – No Haig events, continuing to look at shades.
  • 0810 – Email (Topics include: iPad contract, website redesign, TEE policies, collection analysis, donor correspondence, History iBook project).
  • 0900 – Weekly Check-in with Melinda / ADM … discussed a reduction in our Jane’s subscription, our quote for collection analysis, shade repair, iPads, coordinating hours for graduation week.
  • 1000 – Weekly Check-in with Debbie / ASD … discussed online scheduling in SharePoint, RFID & security, objectives, communications/blog work for the summer.
  • 1035 – Rating Check-in with Sharon
  • 1100 – Email / Clean up desk
  • 1130 – Rating Check-in with Casey
  • 1205 – Lunch
  • 1225 – Review agenda for staff meeting
  • 1250 – Head to 514
  • 1300 – All Library Staff Meeting … divisional updates, and review of proposed objectives
  • 1400 – Examine falling microphone from the ceiling in 501 (Pradeep will look further).
  • 1410 – Teleconference for ConnectNY web redesign team.
  • 1430 – Review for class.
  • 1440 – Depart for Thayer … swing through History department to pick up paper for TEE and make copies of final questions for cadets.
  • 1505 – HI 105 Lesson 40 … reviewed for TEE, took iPad survey for pilot, discussed globalization during the presidencies of Clinton and Bush.
  • 1605 – Arrive back in library
  • 1615 – Meeting with contractor who will install Bartlett shelving and Melinda. Do a walkthrough discussing timelines and logistics.
  • 1645 – Arrive back in library. Email.
  • 1705 – Head home
  • 1930 – Review news
  • 2020 – Final TEE prep
  • 2100 – Begin to review IT Strategy final document for Dean
  • 2210 – Log day
  • 2220 – Wrap

Friday, 10 May

  • 0745 – Arrive Library … Fridays are usually days for catch up and I try not to schedule meetings. This is the first Friday in several weeks I’ve been successful at fending them off.
  • 0800 – Daily Ops Meeting – No Haig events, library web server offline due to security breach
  • 0810 – Coordinate website response … draft email for distribution by the Dean’s Office … multiple discussions with IETD regarding next steps … outage posted to the blog and Facebook … notification to reference desk as POC for research.
  • 0840 – Email (Library web, ATAAPS, AOC reports, History iBooks project and HTML5 design tasker)
  • 0900 – Review news
  • 0920 – Email … seeking update on recruitment from CPAC
  • 0930 – Print TEEs
  • 0930 – Clean off part of desk … Inbox Zero! (lasts 8 minutes)
  • 0950 – Review Bartlett shelving materials
  • 1010 – Various tasks … news … beginning to pull together content for Week in Review … update WordPress online.
  • 1145 – Lunch
  • 1210 – Resume work on Week in Review.
  • 1400 – Conversations on ConnectNY event planning and our submission for ACRL biannual statistics.
  • 1415 – News review and selection of Food for Thought.
  • 1515 – Telephone call with IETD regarding library web server outage and prioritization of work to restore service.
  • 1530 – Finish Week in Review … dig through piles of paper that have been building up for a while.
  • 1600 – Check-in with Reference/Circulation regarding web outage.
  • 1610 – Forms for recruitment sent by CPAC … meet with Dan to review and return.
  • 1620 – Post Week in Review … reacquire Inbox Zero!
  • 1630 – Head home

Saturday, 11 May

  • 1000 – Arrive for TEE, setup classroom, distribute exams, gather returned iPads and reset them.
  • 1100 – Administer TEE, grade Part I while cadets work Parts II and III.
  • 1430 – Finish TEE.
  • 1515 – Head home

Budget / Furlough Update

We do not have any new official news to share on furlough planning this week. We continue to push all remaining contracts for the fiscal year.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
Friday
10 May 2013
 Last Day of Classes Week in Review 0700-2100
Saturday
11 May 2013
Term End Exams Begin 0700-2100
Sunday
12 May 2013
1100-2245
Monday
13 May 2013
 TEEs 0700-2245
Tuesday
14 May 2013
TEEs Division Heads 0700-2245
Wednesday
15 May 2013
TEEs 0700-2245
Thursday
16 May 2013
TEEs 0700-2245
Friday
17 May 2013
TEEs Week in Review  COL Ressler Retirement Ceremony 0700-2100

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

8APR-14APR 15APR-21APR 22APR-28APR 29APR-5MAY
Access Services
Items Charged Out 1,151 1,129 803 648
Gate Count 5,985 6,662 5,545 6,523
Administrative Services
DV Tours 0 1 0 0
Significant Events Hosted 3 3 2 4
Events/Meetings Attended 13 26 22 24
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 78 65 48 23
Library Instruction Sessions 8 2 0 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 1 19 0 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 92 83 32 91
Items Added – Digital 1,527 7,561 21 117
Items Added – GovDocs 39 113 111 180
Items Added – Other 1 0 0 0
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 114 103 93 90
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 53 53 40 44
Research Visits < 1 hour 7 10 21 7
Research Visits < 1 day 3 2 2 3
Research Visits > 1 day 1 0 0 0
Instruction Sessions 0 0 1 0
Cadets Taught 0 0 13 0
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 2,811 2,622 2,290 1,791
LibGuides Visits 766 817 790 500
Digital Collections Visits 151 264 409 344
Facebook Visits 14 21 32 17
Public Printer Prints 0 0 0 0
Public Printer Copies 85 20 1 0
Public Printer Scans 113 102 80 47

USMA Library Radar

Brief status updates on current and planned library initiatives. ★ indicates a 2012-13 objective.

Access Services
★ Communication Channels Beta Blog expanding Assigned 31-Mar-13
★ JH 2nd Floor Review Meeting with team Assigned 30-Apr-13
Administration
ALSC Metrics Design Programming being done by Army Waiting 01-Feb-13
JH Security System Design Paused 31-May-13
Guide to Event Planning Reworking into digital product Assigned 31-May-13
★ New Employee On-Boarding Next step is review Assigned 31-May-13
Windowshade Repair Haig repair partially complete Waiting 31-May-13
Library Parking Space Awaiting DES Waiting 31-May-13
★ Gift SOP Language in draft Active 31-May-13
★ USMPS On hold Assigned 31-May-13
★ Gift / Needs Statements Planned 31-May-13
ConnectNY Annual Meeting Final planning underway Active 10-Jun-13
★ Mobile Infrastructure Waiting for Airwatch system Waiting 31-Aug-13
Fires of Hate Exhibit Dates selected for Apr-Jun 2014 Planned 15-Jan-14
Information Gateway
★ Evening Skills Clinics Spring slate underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ LibGuide Review Work underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ Embedded Liaisons Department work underway Assigned 31-May-13
IGD GS-09/11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
★ Academic Support Statements Statement work underway Assigned 31-Jul-13
Materials Processing
★ Collection Inventory SOP Planned 28-Feb-13
★ Gov Docs Review Assigned 30-Apr-13
Withdrawal Policy Planned 31-May-13
★ CTC Digital Collections On hold pending repository Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Awaiting CPAC Action Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
Special Collections and Archives
★ Ring Case Biographies Initial planning underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ WP Authors Reception Planning for fall Assigned 31-May-13
★ Fee-For-Service Planned 31-May-13
★ Library History Exhibit Planned 31-May-13
SC&AD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Assigned 31-May-13
Bartlett Hall Move Re-awaiting funding Assigned 30-Jun-13
Systems Management
★ Discovery Layer Funded Assigned 01-Mar-13
SMD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 01-Mar-13
★ Institutional Repository Planned 30-Apr-13
★ Security System Review Planned 30-Jun-13
★ Public Website Redesign Redesign underway Active 30-Jun-13

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “The elite schools will get better and better and the state schools will get more standardized and commodified, more reliably mediocre. Actually, that’s an optimistic scenario. If we check out secondary education, we can see that the elite high schools are better than ever, while most high schools are pretty much warehouses for teenagers. Those two kinds of high schools will pretty predictably feed those two kinds of colleges. And nobody with eyes to see trusts assessment rubrics to guarantee quality control.” – MOOCS and the Stratification of American Higher Education | Rightly Understood | Big Think
  • “The unemployment rate for college graduates in April was a mere 3.9 percent, compared with 7.5 percent for the work force as a whole, according to a Labor Department report released Friday. Even when the jobless rate for college graduates was at its very worst in this business cycle, in November 2010, it was still just 5.1 percent. That is close to the jobless rate the rest of the work force experiences when the economy is good. Among all segments of workers sorted by educational attainment, college graduates are the only group that has more people employed today than when the recession started.” – College Graduates Fare Well in Jobs Market, Even Through Recession – NYTimes.com
  • “Let’s repeat that last part: “no digital communication is secure”, by which he means not that any communication is susceptible to government interception as it happens (although that is true), but far beyond that: all digital communications – meaning telephone calls, emails, online chats and the like – are automatically recorded and stored and accessible to the government after the fact. To describe that is to define what a ubiquitous, limitless Surveillance State is.” – Are all telephone calls recorded and accessible to the US government? | Glenn Greenwald | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
  • “Digital technologies create new opportunities for accelerating, expanding, and individualizing learning. Our members and students are already actively engaged in building the schools and campuses of the future—including quality online communities. Increasingly, teachers, faculty, and staff are becoming curriculum designers who orchestrate the delivery of content using multiple instructional methods and technologies both within and beyond the traditional instructional day. Teaching and learning can now occur beyond the limitations of time and space. NEA embraces this new environment and these new technologies to better prepare our students for college and for 21st century careers.” – NEA – NEA Policy Statement on Digital Learning
  • “Is more data always better? Hardly. In fact, if you’re looking for correlations—is thing X connected to thing Y, in a way that will give me information I can act on?—gathering more data could actually hurt you.” – Most data isn’t “big,” and businesses are wasting money pretending it is – Quartz
  • “According to the survey, 86.9 percent of first-time, full-time freshmen in 2012 received some form of institutional aid, with the average award amount equal to 53.1 percent of the sticker price. Those numbers dropped slightly as students progressed through school. Students at small institutions were more likely to receive awards than were their peers at other institutions, but students at research universities were more likely to receive larger awards. The rising discount rate, coupled with enrollment declines at several of the institutions surveyed, is a reflection of the myriad forces that are making it harder for colleges to get students and their families to pay top dollar for a college education. Those forces include a decline in the number of traditional-aged college students, increased competition for students with the ability to pay, decreased household incomes, increased scrutiny of tuition hikes, and more questioning of the value of a college degree. “We are finding that our decision to increase tuition is less elastic than in previous years,” wrote one survey respondent, whose response was kept anonymous. “More and more families are ‘setting’ the amount of tuition that they are willing to pay, making it more difficult to increase net tuition revenue by increasing our sticker price.” – NACUBO survey reports sixth consecutive year of discount rate increases | Inside Higher Ed
  • “Not only does the FBI claim it can read emails and other electronic communications without a warrant — even after a federal appeals court ruled that doing so violates the Fourth Amendment — but the documents strongly suggest that different U.S. Attorneys’ offices around the country are applying conflicting standards to access communications content,” he wrote.” – FBI may be reading emails without a warrant  – NBC News.com
  • “Every time we make a mobile call or send a text message–which pings a cell tower–that info is recorded. So, with enough computer power, a company can draw pretty accurate conclusions about how and when people move through a city or a region. Or they can tell where people have come from to attend an event. As part of a recent case study, for example, Verizon was able to say that people with Baltimore area codes outnumbered those with San Francisco area codes by three to one inside the New Orleans Superdome for the Super Bowl in February. In a world enamored of geolocation, this is digital gold. It’s one thing to know the demographic blend of a community, but to be able to find out how many people pass by a business and where they’re coming from, that adds a whole nother level of precision to target marketing.” – What Phone Companies Are Doing With All That Data From Your Phone | Innovations
  • “You won’t keep control of your time, unless you can say ‘no.’ You can’t let other people set your agenda in life.” – Warren Buffett at a conference earlier this week.

Week in Review – 3 May 2013

Research Help & Reference Service

This week, I held an introductory meeting with staff who work the reference desk to talk about the big picture of how we provide research help to cadets, faculty, and staff and what some of our current and future challenges are in providing that service. I’ve asked the group to brainstorm how we can best design a complete suite of services that help our constituents do better research and therefore improve the quality of the education received by cadets. This is driven by a few different factors:

  • Research help and reference service is core to what we do, and how we want our users to see value in the library. In some cases we succeed very well at this now, in other areas we can improve. The brand of the library should be our service and staff, not just our building.
  • We have identified that we would like to move the current reference service point. That begets the question, “what should the new service point look like?” Understanding how we want to deliver the service in a broad way will help inform how to design a physical space.
  • We have current and upcoming vacancies that will impact how we provide this service. We need to design the service for resiliency and sustainability.

Specific questions I raised for the team to consider:

  • Consider and propose how research assistance can best be designed and built to assist cadets in pursuing academic excellence through information use. Who provides this service? What service exactly are we providing? Where will it happen (largely determined, but not when it comes to service point design) When do we provide the service? How do we deliver the service?
  • How can we ensure that our “brand” at West Point is the quality of service we deliver?
  • How can we develop deeper and more meaningful partnerships with cadets and faculty?
  • How is the quality of our service increasing the value and usefulness of a West Point education?

We will talk more about their work as it progresses as a whole library staff. Much if not all of we do helps to support our work to ensure that cadets, faculty, and staff have both access to and knowledge of how to use the resources we curate, collect, and provide.

Related to this effort is a draft policy that provides some guidance on support for external constituents. Our first priority for service is always cadets, faculty, and staff of USMA. We are not a public library, though we do have a mission to provide some support to the general public on the topic of the Academy and the West Point Military Reservation. This policy is draft and I am seeking comments from library staff. We will be developing an accompanying SOP that will walk through standard reference interactions and how they should be handled so that we can have consistency across our team. Please let me know what you think and how it can be improved.

Draft LPOM 2-2 External Reference and Research Support

Budget / Furlough Update

We do not have any new official news to share on furlough planning this week. We have been given revised spending targets for FY13 which meet our minimum needs and will also allow us to reactivate some cancelled content as well as move forward with some critical improvements such as a discovery service. We are very grateful for support from the Dean’s Office to make these things happen.

We also have received word that Superintendent has allocated funding to move forward with the purchase and installation of our compact shelving for Special Collections and Archives in Bartlett Hall North. The contract is ready to be let and we hope will have funds applied this week. That should put us on track for the midsummer installation and hopefully a reconfiguration of collections in the August/September time frame.

USMA Library Events

The events below will likely affect USMA Library and Jefferson Hall operations in the coming week.

Date USMA O/DEAN USMA Library Jefferson Hall Hours
Friday
3 May 2013
Week in Review D/MATH First Class Recognition 0700-2100
Saturday
4 May 2013
Special Olympics 0700-2100
Sunday
5 May 2013
West Point Strings Concert 1100-2245
Monday
6 May 2013
West Point Negotiation Project 0700-2245
Tuesday
7 May 2013
Division Heads 0700-2245
Wednesday
8 May 2013
Strategy Case Competition 0700-2245
Thursday
9 May 2013
 Dean’s Staff  All Library Staff 0700-2245
Friday
10 May 2013
Last Day of Classes Week in Review 0700-2100

USMA Library Metrics

USMA Library tracks a number of key statistics to measure service levels. These are their stories …

1APR-7APR 8APR-14APR 15APR-21APR 22APR-28APR
Access Services
Items Charged Out 1,046 1,151 1,129 803
Gate Count N/A 5,985 6,662 5,545
Administrative Services
DV Tours 0 0 1 0
Significant Events Hosted 4 3 3 2
Events/Meetings Attended 19 13 26 22
Information Gateway
Reference Questions 60 78 65 48
Library Instruction Sessions 0 8 2 0
Cadets Attending Sessions 0 1 19 0
Materials Processing
Items Added – Books 9 92 83 32
Items Added – Digital 0 1,527 7,561 21
Items Added – GovDocs 105 39 113 111
Items Added – Other 0 1 0 0
Continuing Resource Check-Ins 921 114 103 93
Special Collections & Archives
Reference Inquiries 34 53 53 40
Research Visits < 1 hour 9 7 10 21
Research Visits < 1 day 6 3 2 2
Research Visits > 1 day 0 1 0 0
Instruction Sessions 1 0 0 1
Cadets Taught 16 0 0 13
Systems Management
Library Home Page Visits 2,717 2,811 2,622 2,290
LibGuides Visits 825 766 817 790
Digital Collections Visits 138 151 264 409
Facebook Visits 23 14 21 32
Public Printer Prints 0 0 0 0
Public Printer Copies 25 85 20 1
Public Printer Scans 14 113 102 80

USMA Library Radar

Brief status updates on current and planned library initiatives. ★ indicates a 2012-13 objective.

Access Services
★ Communication Channels Beta Blog expanding Assigned 31-Mar-13
★ JH 2nd Floor Review Meeting with team Assigned 30-Apr-13
Administration
ALSC Metrics Design Programming being done by Army Waiting 01-Feb-13
JH Security System Design Paused 31-May-13
Guide to Event Planning Reworking into digital product Assigned 31-May-13
★ New Employee On-Boarding Next step is review Assigned 31-May-13
Windowshade Repair Haig repair partially complete Waiting 31-May-13
Library Parking Space Awaiting DES Waiting 31-May-13
★ Gift SOP  Language in draft Active 31-May-13
★ USMPS On hold Assigned 31-May-13
★ Gift / Needs Statements Planned 31-May-13
ConnectNY Annual Meeting Request forwarded to GC Waiting 10-Jun-13
★ Mobile Infrastructure Waiting for Airwatch system Waiting 31-Aug-13
Fires of Hate Exhibit Dates selected for Apr-Jun 2014 Planned 15-Jan-14
Information Gateway
★ Evening Skills Clinics Spring slate underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ LibGuide Review Work underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ Embedded Liaisons Department work underway Assigned 31-May-13
IGD GS-09/11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
★ Academic Support Statements Statement work underway Assigned 31-Jul-13
Materials Processing
★ Collection Inventory SOP Planned 28-Feb-13
★ Gov Docs Review Assigned 30-Apr-13
Withdrawal Policy Planned 31-May-13
★ CTC Digital Collections On hold pending repository Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Awaiting CPAC Action Waiting 31-May-13
MPD GS-11 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 31-May-13
Special Collections and Archives
★ Ring Case Biographies Initial planning underway Assigned 31-May-13
★ WP Authors Reception Planning for fall Assigned 31-May-13
★ Fee-For-Service Planned 31-May-13
★ Library History Exhibit Planned 31-May-13
SC&AD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Assigned 31-May-13
Bartlett Hall Move Re-awaiting funding Assigned 30-Jun-13
Systems Management
★ Discovery Layer Funded Assigned 01-Mar-13
SMD GS-06 Recruitment Hiring freeze Waiting 01-Mar-13
★ Institutional Repository Planned 30-Apr-13
★ Security System Review Planned 30-Jun-13
★ Public Website Redesign Redesign underway Active 30-Jun-13

Food for Thought

A few quotations from the past week about libraries, information, technology, and the future

  • “The respondents were most likely to take online courses on topics they felt more comfortable “teaching themselves.” When a student considered a subject area “difficult”—many cited mathematics and science courses as examples—they were more likely to want a traditional brick-and-mortar setting because, the report says, “they needed the immediate question-and-answer context of a face-to-face course.” – Students Avoid ‘Difficult’ Online Courses, Study Finds – Wired Campus – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • “As recently as the year 2000, only one-quarter of all the world’s stored information was digital. The rest was preserved on paper, film, and other analog media. But because the amount of digital data expands so quickly — doubling around every three years — that situation was swiftly inverted. Today, less than two percent of all stored information is nondigital.” – The Rise of Big Data | Foreign Affairs
  • “An estimated 5 million Americans are already using wearable devices to sync their lives to the cloud, and their ranks are growing rapidly. Like Paulus, they are sending vast amounts of information—collectively referred to as Big Data—to the servers of salivating Silicon Valley executives. In just the first half of last year, venture-capital firms invested $700 million in businesses developing new wearable and embedded devices. According to a study by the consulting giant McKinsey, Big Data could be worth $300 billion annually to the health-care industry alone. But its value to sports-apparel companies, health-food purveyors, and even mattress-makers is also apparent. At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, 283 vendors showed up to promote digital health products—over 100 more than the number of companies hawking games. One British mobile-research firm estimates that by 2017, 70 million people will be buying wearable devices annually and slapping them on their wrists (and chests, ankles, and necks). And while there is no valuation yet for, say, what Paulus’ heart rate is worth per beat, there’s reason to think that users of tracking apps and sensor-laden devices are giving the milk away free.” – Who Really Owns Your Personal Data?: Critical Eye : Details
  • “Says Christopher Johnson, a linguist and naming expert, “The problem with Google is that it makes us painfully aware of how unoriginal we are. Before web search, two bands could use the same name in happy ignorance as long as they were serving different geographical and stylistic markets.” – Michael Erard – Like a Lead Balloon – The Morning News
  • “Nearly half of all undergraduates in the United States arrive on campus needing remedial work before they can begin regular credit-bearing classes.” – Colleges Adapt Online Courses to Ease Burden – NYTimes.com
  • “Bit by bit, Rumsey digitized his collection — up to 38,000 maps and other items — along the way developing software that made it easier for people to explore the maps and 3D objects such as globes online. Today, the Digital Public Library of America announced that Rumsey’s collection would now be available through the DPLA portal, placing the maps into the deeper and broader context of the DPLA’s other holdings.” – Oh the Places You’ll Go: 38,000 Historical Maps to Explore at New Online Library – Rebecca J. Rosen – The Atlantic
  • “94% of parents say libraries are important for their children” – from recent findings published in Parents, Children, Libraries, and Reading, a Pew Internet & American Life Project
  • “You have to exercise,” he said, for instance. “Or at some point you’ll just break down.” You also need to remove from your life the day-to-day problems that absorb most people for meaningful parts of their day. “You’ll see I wear only gray or blue suits,” he said. “I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.” He mentioned research that shows the simple act of making decisions degrades one’s ability to make further decisions. It’s why shopping is so exhausting. “You need to focus your decision-making energy. You need to routinize yourself. You can’t be going through the day distracted by trivia.” The self-discipline he believes is required to do the job well comes at a high price. “You can’t wander around,” he said. “It’s much harder to be surprised. You don’t have those moments of serendipity. You don’t bump into a friend in a restaurant you haven’t seen in years. The loss of anonymity and the loss of surprise is an unnatural state. You adapt to it, but you don’t get used to it—at least I don’t.” – Michael Lewis: Obama’s Way | Vanity Fair
  • “By 2017, half of all employers will require workers to supply their own devices for work purposes. Also, Gartner says, enterprises that offer only corporately-owned smartphones or stipends to buy your own will soon become the exception to the rule. As enterprise BYOD programs proliferate, 38% of companies expect to stop providing devices to workers by 2016 and let them use their own, according to a global survey of CIOs by Gartner, Inc.’s Executive Programs.” – BYOD, or else. Companies will soon require that workers use their own smartphone on the job – Computerworld
  • “The good news is that an overwhelming majority think jobs and completion are at least somewhat important. The bad news? Fewer than two thirds think either counts as “very important.” To which I can only ask: If those aren’t tops on your priority list right now, what the hell is? Meanwhile, more than a fifth don’t seem to think that cost factors much into the quality calculation, which is a view I can sort of imagine a sentient creature defending in 1997 when everybody thought the stock market was a magical fount of retirement money and the internet was going end unemployment. But at time when half the country seems convinced that everybody under the age of thirty is about to burned alive on a giant pyre of student debt, it’s tad tone deaf. According to Gallup, 77 percent of Americans think colleges need to cut tuition. Every single college is going to be judged via a cost-benefit analysis. This is not complicated. It should be understood by now.” – Only 65% of College Presidents Say It’s ‘Very Important’ That Grads Get Good Jobs – Jordan Weissmann – The Atlantic