January 26, 2011

Book shelving? There's an app for that

Shelved is an iPod/iPhone/iPad app for the librarian wanna-be.   The point of the game is simple: put the books in order--but any librarian will tell you that's not as simple as it sounds. As co-developer Scott Douglas says:

Shelving books may not sound very sporty, but if you have ever wondered how fast can you shelve a cart of books, then there’s now an app for that.

Last October, my wife and I began working with a developer to create a game just for librarians. The game is called “Sheleved” and it went live last week.

The game features three different modes of play based on different types of call numbers:  Library of Congress, Dewey, and Alphabetical.

It may not be the most exciting game, but if you are looking to test your library shelving staff, or even test yourself, then it’s just the game for you.

January 25, 2011

Labour History Ebooks now available.

The Canadian Committee on Labour History is Canada’s organization of historians and other scholars interested in the study of the lives and struggles of working people throughout Canada’s past.  Since 1976, the CCLH has published Labour/Le travail, Canada’s pre-eminent scholarly journal of labour studies. It also publishes books, that focus on the history of Canada’s working people and their organizations.

Working with  CCLH, Athabasca University Press  recently released 21  ebooks in the area of Canadian labour history.  The Past CCLH Publications Series  currently covers digitized (pdf)  titles originally published between 1985 and 2007. The publications include documentary collections, oral histories, autobiographies, biographies, and provincial and local labour movement histories with a popular bent that will be of interest to  labour audiences as well as university audiences rather than simply on scholarly studies in the labour area.

The 21 titles in this series has been added to the Alloway Library catalogue and will be of particular interest to researchers working  in the areas of History and Political Studies.

January 24, 2011

Celebrating library sleepers

January 18, 2011; UCSD Biomedical Library.
It's a blog called "Asians sleeping in the library,"  and it's a series of contributed pictures of just that-- although  it includes pictures of people sleeping in classrooms as well.

It's "not meant to be discriminatory, mean spirited or malicious in any way, shape or form. It is meant to celebrate, not berate, the hardest workers at our universities."

The creator of this blog "is a handsome Jew who also likes to sleep in the library."  (That's what he said.)

It is kind of funny in a random, Internet kind of way.
So relax, sleeping in the library could make you famous.

January 22, 2011

Bubble Ball Boy Creates Hit App in the Library!

The Spanish Fork Public Library in Spanish Fork, Utah is the birthplace of the world's most popular free iPhone app: "Bubble Ball. The game/puzzle's creator is a fourteen-year old boy named Robert Nay, who spent weeks in the library to develop the code.  According to a Reuters news story,  "it was at the public library in his hometown of Spanish Fork, about an hour's drive south of Salt Lake City, where Robert found the computer technology books and the space to work on his creation.


"I just wanted to make an iPhone app. I thought it would be cool. And I wanted to see if I could do it," Robert said in a recent interview with Reuters. "I played games that were similar to it. I just took what I liked from different games, and, like, add my own stuff."
But Robert's "Bubble Ball," a puzzle and game of strategy that involves the principles of physics in moving a floating bubble from one point to another, is anything but a knock-off of other apps.
"He spent countless hours working on it, and the final product includes more than 4,000 lines of code. He sent it to the Apple app store on December 22. It appeared for download at the app store December 29," said his mother, Kari Nay.
Robert first began working on his invention in November.
"Bubble Ball" was downloaded 1 million times in its first two weeks of release from Apple's iTunes website and has since surpassed the 2-million mark, replacing "Angry Birds" as the site's most popular free app.

But Robert is developing a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit, too. He already is working on a new game that may include an "in-app" purchase option for additional game levels for 99 cents.
Asked about his advice to other young people, he hardly looks up while tapping away on his laptop.
"Go for your dreams and do what you want to do," he says.
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January 21, 2011

NRC Research Press Back Files: Now Open Access for Canadians


Ottawa, Canada – On January 1, 2011, over 100,000 back files of NRC Research Press journals became Open Access for all Canadians (with the exception of newly released Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences phase 2, 1901–1979, and Canadian Journal of Research).
Cameron Macdonald, Executive Director of Canadian Science Publishing, says this is an important step forward for NRC Research Press. “It is our commitment to Canadians that they have access to some of the finest research published. The NRC Research Press back files, dating back to 1951, cover fields ranging from botany to physics, and we are proud to offer all Canadians full Open Access to this important resource.”
 The journals to offer Open Access back files are
Alloway Library's Journal List has been updated to include links to these titles.  By offering Canadians Open Access to its back files, NRC Research Press is reinforcing its position as the leading scholarly publisher in Canada. The organization also provides publishing services to another 11 journals, including Canadian Aeronautics and Space Journal and Canadian Journal of Remote Sensing.
Read more. 
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