February 08, 2008

My Angry Rant About Smoking...

so, who decided that only smokers have rights?
do i not also have them?

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November 13, 2007

Cleveland Botanical Garden Library-There's Work to be Done!

Working in a place called the Cleveland Botanical Gardens, one would expect great botanical knowledge from any employee thereof. However, this is not the case for their head librarian, who confesses that, while he is a self-professed “gardener,” he is not qualified to answer many of the questions he is asked relating to plants and their care. This is one of the reasons he is completely reorganizing the Garden’s library and plans to have an online card catalogue up and running by December 1st: so people are able to find what they are looking for more easily. This project—creating and updating bibliographic records for 20,000 books—has occupied the majority of his time for the past 11 months. He and his team of about 17 volunteers and 3 paid workers have been weeding out inaccuracies in the current hard copy card catalogue, which uses the Manx system, and updating them to the Library of Congress system.
This is not, of course, the only writing done by this head librarian. He is currently working on writing up a project proposal to get grant money to build a publicly accessible preservation room for the 1500 or so rare botanical books currently locked away where only he can see them. He also wants to make the 5,000 or so rare books currently located in cabinets above the library shelves more accessible to the public, and is hoping that the online database will accomplish this goal.
He also does much less interesting writing on a daily basis: as the head of the Education in Library Committee, he must write agendas for their meetings; as head librarian, he is responsible for writing up schedules for his 3 employees and 17 volunteers; as a librarian, he is responsible for sending out overdue notices (he noted here that one man owes $271.00 in late fees for a book that is worth $6.00!); as someone who cares about the future of the library, he writes up training manuals for volunteers and workers, library policies, and coordinates description of special events and programs. He is responsible for the fliers located throughout the library that many people would take for granted, such as the reference papers located below each shelf to decode the call numbers of the books, or the signs for the books sale that recently concluded.
Though he has not been involved in the actual archive in the past 11 months, due to the fact that he has been focusing solely on finishing up his online card catalogue database project, he still had some stories to share regarding the institution’s archive. He said that, while attempting to organize the chaos that is the Cleveland Botanical Garden’s archive, volunteers came across samples of Shaker Seeds, each small packet worth upwards of $5,000. Another time, they found a rare silver tea set: donated to the institution, even though it had nothing to do with botany! He said that there were some real treasures located there, though: some of their historic photographs of early Cleveland’s Victorian gardens are the only ones of their kind. So the archive is not dead, just slightly neglected. As soon as he is done with the catalogue project, he is going to move on to the archive. As he puts it, “all organizations has an archives” that they should keep updating.
How does his writing make the library more meaningful? Right now, by making the library more accessible to the public. His dream is that the online catalogue will allow gardeners from all over the state to find the book—however rare or unusual—that they need, and be able to get it through Ohiolink, a system like inter-library loan to which Cleveland Botanical Granden’s library is trying to get connected. Until then, you’ll just have to visit to see for yourself!

September 27, 2007

Paper or Plastic?

Actually, I’d like some HTML please.
Is paper becoming obsolete? Do we even need the physical textbooks anymore? Why not just post everything—from notes to homework assignments to books—online and save the trees? Here at Case Western Reserve University, we are moving in that direction.

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September 21, 2007

I can read you like a book...

Can a person be "read like a book?"
Does our outward appearance represent us, or do we represent our outward appearance?

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September 14, 2007

Confessions of a Compulsive Reader...

I’m a compulsive reader. Like, how some people are compulsive eaters, or television watchers; how some people are obsessive compulsive and need everything to be all neat and organized. Yeah. Like that.

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August 31, 2007

Cheating in high school? NEVER, ALAS!

“Oh, no, I would never do that!"

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August 27, 2007

Testing, Testing, 1, 2, 3

Hello everybody. Well, I know that nobody reads my blogs, but I thought I would post this, as it is my homework, and since there is no other way for me to be certain that this system is working with my new laptop. Today, I realized that I am going to have a lot of homework assignments in college that involve this computer, and there's a part of me wishing that every assignment would--or could--be this easy and easygoing.