Drawing a Line…In the Ether.

Transparency VS Anonymity on the Web

Where do you fall?

As scholars and professionals, many of us spend a lot of time in the connected digital realms of the interwebs. While the Internet allows us access to information and entertainment of all kinds, individuals and companies – both benign and malicious – are getting much more savvy about finding, tracking, and collecting information in the other direction — about you!

While this infographic is positively ancient at nearly a year old, it gets to an important issue of how the web is used as a communication tool and it got me wondering about how folks in our community feel about the topic, whether they’re aware of the issues, and what precautions they take – or don’t care about!

Results of Mashable's Anonymity Poll

Results of Mashable's Anonymity Poll

According to this poll from Mashable which shows nearly 80% support, people overwhelmingly feel that anonymity is an important quality for their web experience. Pseudonyms are a common and time-honored  strategy used by folks to maintain a kind of privacy/anonymity. Would we have the published works of George Elliot or the Bronte sisters had they not committed this subterfuge? And what of the “victims of fame” like Charles de Lint who, after gaining a devoted following as a fantasy author, used an alternative name to publish a series horror stories.

Many people whose professional work all-but-requires them to have an online identity (including myself) have created separate online personas where they can interact with non-work related communities. Some long-time bloggers who have shared extensively about their expertise and life have come to regret the decision, despite what they and others may have gained from their open sharing. This evidence notwithstanding, Internet giant Google has made it clear that the only way you’ll use their Google+ services is with your “real” identity.

How do you use the web? Do you fall more to the side of supporting transparency or anonymity? In between? Tell us in the comments!

Student-tested Tips for Surviving Finals

1.   Check out the Final Exam Schedule so that you know when your exams will be and plan ahead so that you give yourself plenty of time to study for each of them.
2.    Study in chunks.  Block off specific hours of your schedule to study for each test you have to take. A ten minute study break every few hours is also a good idea.
3.     Schedule in some exercise.  There’s no better way to relieve stress.  Don’t plan on studying non-stop the whole week.
4.    Take advantage of study groups.  A group can motivate you to get started and discussing difficult concepts with each other can aid in understanding.
5.    Take advantage of review sessions.  Most professors will touch on certain topics more heavily than others in review sessions and this might give you a better idea of what will be on the exam.
6.    Take advantage of your professor’s office hours.  If you’re unsure about anything, touch base with your professor or TA.
7.    Make sure you have the materials you’ll need for the test the night before.  Bring a back-up pen or pencil.
8.    Get a good night’s rest  and have a good breakfast before your test.  If you follow tip #1, you won’t have to stay up all night cramming.
9.    Don’t wait until your class is about to begin to get a bluebook.  If you need a blue book, you can pick it up at the Library Service Desk for 15 cents.
10.  Don’t psych yourself out.  You’ve studied, so don’t talk yourself into doing poorly.  Put yourself in confidence mode, visualize it all going right and think A+.

Forget Your Supplies?

 

Forget to bring supplies to the library with you? Need a blue book for tonight’s class?

The Milne Library Store offers a wide selection of products at a nominal cost; including blue books, highlighters, note cards, flash drives, and more

Just ask at the Service Desk!

Electronic Posters in Milne

Do you have an event to publicize?

Submit an electronic poster to be shown on the LCD monitor in the Milne Library Lobby for maximum visibility!  It is available for use by faculty, staff and recognized student organizations and is easy to accomplish.  Simply go to the Milne Library home page, click on Requests and Services and then select “E-flyer” to find design recommendations and the submission form.  Your electronic poster will rotate with up to 9 others and will stay up for 1 to 2 weeks.  Submissions are posted on a first come first serve basis.  If you have questions, please contact Coleen Hopkins.

Need Some Help? We’ve Got It!

Help is Available! Photo Credit: Flickr user gruntzooki

Librarians are always available to help with your research and technology needs.

Working with a group?  We can accommodate. Sciences? Got it.  Business Stats? Yep.  Need help with web sites, podcasting, powerpoint or excel? For sure!  Music Media? You know it!   And that’s only a taste of the subject coverage available.

Want to contact a librarian right away?  Simply fill out a Consultation Request form telling us a bit about your project or research needs, and a librarian will contact you to set up an appointment.

If you still have questions, don’t forget that the service desk or IM a Librarian reference chat is always a great place to start.

Bill Baker: Profiles of Milne Library Staff

If you are in the library in the evening, you may have seen Bill Baker in the Information Delivery Service (IDS) Office.  Bill has held this position for over ten years here at Milne Library and his areas of responsibility include supervising borrowing, lending and document delivery.

Bill states that it makes him happy when he can “go the extra mile” by sending an email or making a phone call to get materials for a patron.

Ask Bill to see the picture of his son with General Petraeus!

Storytelling in Milne on Nov. 29, 2011

On Tuesday, November 29th, Milne Library will host a Storytelling Event for children and their caregivers! This event is open to SUNY Geneseo faculty, staff and students as well as the Geneseo community.

Come listen to stories about chipmunks, Native Americans and the Oregon Trail performed by School of Education students — and be entertained by songs and read-alouds performed by members of the Young Children’s Council.

Storytelling will last from 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm, with refreshments provided. The event will take place in the Teacher Education Resource Center, located on the lower-level of Milne Library.

Library Hours for Thanksgiving Break

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Turkey Day. Courtesy Flickr User CraftyGoat.

We here at Milne Library wish you a safe and happy journey home for the Thanksgiving holiday. If your plans include a little studying or research, the library will have reduced hours over the Thanksgiving Break:

Wednesday, November 23 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Thursday – Saturday, November 24 – 26 CLOSED
Sunday, November 27 6:00 PM – 1:00 AM

See the complete list of library hours.   Travel safely!!

Password Security

With the holiday online buying season gearing up, it’s a good time to think about your online security. Mashable just published a list of the 25 Worst Passwords of 2011.  If any of your passwords are on the list, you might want to think about changing things up a bit. Lifehacker has some great tips for picking and remembering passwords.

Some have turned to password management software to help keep track of their many passwords.  The major issue with such programs is that you must download the software and can only access it from that single device. 

An alternative to downloading password management software might be Open ID, which allows you to sign into websites with a universal ID and password.  You can choose to use an account that you’ve already created.  Some of the more well known OpenID providers include Google, Facebook, Yahoo!, Microsoft, AOL, and Twitter.  If you have one of these accounts, you already have an OpenID identity.

Meet Joe Easterly

Joe Easterly

Joe Easterly, Milne's Electronic Resources and Digital Scholarship Librarian

With Library service expanding deeper into the realm of digital scholarship – the new Digital Media Lab, open-source publishing, Digital Thoreau, etc. — could a matching librarian be far behind? Of course not, and he has arrived in the person of Joe Easterly, who became Milne’s first Electronic Resources and Digital Scholarship Librarian on October 24.

Joe is here to act as the primary human resource for faculty and students working on (or hoping to begin) scholarly projects with a digital focus. It’s what he’s been doing, more or less, at the University of Buffalo for the last four years where he was a media specialist and coordinator of the Media Resource Center, serving as the Visual Resources librarian to the university’s visual arts faculty. The skills he’s acquired through his coursework (he earned his master’s degree in library science in 2007, with an emphasis in digital media information systems and retrieval) and professional experience will serve him – or, more accurately, the Geneseo campus community – very well.

Among the projects Joe has been involved in is UBdigit, the University of Buffalo’s digital library collection. He managed and directed the Visual Resources Collection portion of that resource, from scanning the images to creating the metadata, working closely with faculty and supervising a team of student assistants. Joe is used to collaborating with faculty, having conducted workshops, developed image digitization standards, facilitated licensing and consignment of digital images, and helped write grants. He also has experience digitizing images for exhibitions and scholarly publication, and he’s done digital preservation consulting for UB Galleries and museum curators in the Buffalo-Niagara region. He was a charter member of UB’s Digital Humanities Initiative. Safe to say, Joe knows his way around the digital scholarship landscape and is prepared to lead others through it.

One of the first projects Joe has joined here at Geneseo is the Digital Thoreau Project, headed by English professor Paul Schacht and other faculty from the English department and Milne Library. Digital Thoreau aims to bring the works of Henry David Thoreau – beginning with a TEI-encoded scholarly edition of Walden – to scholars, students and general readers around the world.

Joe’s ease and expertise with digital technology and his commitment to librarianship are built on a solid humanities foundation. He received a BA in linguistics, has studied French extensively and is currently pursuing a second master’s degree in social anthropology. He is also a classically trained pianist. Lately, he says, he’s “really into” wine and photography, and when the weather’s fine he likes to go sailing.

The folks at Milne are very glad that Joe decided to join the faculty, and the feeling is mutual, he says. “I was really impressed by how committed and talented the library faculty and staff are … it was a big motivation for me to join.” Aesthetics played a (small) part, too, in his decision to come to Geneseo. “I was expecting the dreary early-70s late modernist architecture you sometimes see at [SUNY] campuses,” he says. “I had no idea how beautiful the town is, or the campus, until I came to visit.” Joe is not the only one who is optimistic about his future here at Geneseo, and about the future of digital scholarship.

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