Spring Fever Blossoms on the Wofford Campus

Signs of the imminent arrival of the scantily-clad student-bird have started appearing on the Wofford College campus. These signs include students studying outside, a proliferation of flip flops on feet everywhere, and conversation balloons appearing on the walls of buildings around campus:

Midterms are almost over. Enjoy your spring break and watch the campus for more signs of spring and its attendant high-jinks.


New Outdoor Furniture on the Front Patio!

We have added a new outdoor seating area on the front patio of the library just in time for the warmer weather.  Stop by and check it out!


Digital textbooks will soon be the norm

According to the latest report from the social learning platform Xplana, in the next five years digital textbook sales will surpass 25% of the market for higher education and career education sales.
The report goes on the summarize some of the factors influencing sales growth:

  • cost of textbooks
  • availability of digital content
  • student buying and sharing trends
  • continued growth of for-profit institutions and online learning

Read the report summary here or download the full report.

Reposted from The Centered Librarian.

"A terrible beauty is born"

Easter, 1916

I have met them at close of day
Coming with vivid faces
From counter or desk among grey
Eighteenth-century houses.
I have passed with a nod of the head
Or polite meaningless words,
Or have lingered awhile and said
Polite meaningless words,
And thought before I had done
Of a mocking tale or a gibe
To please a companion
Around the fire at the club,
Being certain that they and I
But lived where motley is worn:
All changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

That woman's days were spent
In ignorant good-will,
Her nights in argument
Until her voice grew shrill.
What voice more sweet than hers
When, young and beautiful,
She rode to harriers?
This man had kept a school
And rode our winged horse;
This other his helper and friend
Was coming into his force;
He might have won fame in the end,
So sensitive his nature seemed,
So daring and sweet his thought.
This other man I had dreamed
A drunken, vainglorious lout.
He had done most bitter wrong
To some who are near my heart,
Yet I number him in the song;
He, too, has resigned his part
In the casual comedy;
He, too, has been changed in his turn,
Transformed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

Hearts with one purpose alone
Through summer and winter seem
Enchanted to a stone
To trouble the living stream.
The horse that comes from the road.
The rider, the birds that range
From cloud to tumbling cloud,
Minute by minute they change;
A shadow of cloud on the stream
Changes minute by minute;
A horse-hoof slides on the brim,
And a horse plashes within it;
The long-legged moor-hens dive,
And hens to moor-cocks call;
Minute by minute they live:
The stone's in the midst of all.

Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?
That is Heaven's part, our part
To murmur name upon name,
As a mother names her child
When sleep at last has come
On limbs that had run wild.
What is it but nightfall?
No, no, not night but death;
Was it needless death after all?
For England may keep faith
For all that is done and said.
We know their dream; enough
To know they dreamed and are dead;
And what if excess of love
Bewildered them till they died?
I write it out in a verse -
MacDonagh and MacBride
And Connolly and Pearse
Now and in time to be,
Wherever green is worn,
Are changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

-W.B. Yeats, 1916

In observance of St. Patrick's Day, here are some links to resources provided by the National Library of Ireland.

The 1916 Rising: Personalities and Perspectives

Yeats: The Life and Works of William Butler Yeats

Above: James Joyce reading from Finnegan's Wake.

And of course Joyce's Ulysses in 18 animated .gifs: Ulysses for Dummies. (It's a lot funnier if you've read the book - I'd recommend taking the time someday.)

"I had several e-books .... the national security force arrested me for possessing them."


Kim Heung Kwang, founder of the North Korea Intellectual Solidarity organization and former professor of computer science in North Korea, in The Atlantic describing why he left that country:

The books were pretty innocuous fare, mostly motivational titles like Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People. “These weren’t anti-regime books, so why was this a crime?” he asks bitterly. “I saw that there wasn’t any hope for the North Korean system. I started to dream of going somewhere where I had the freedom to read what I wanted.” Kim defected in 2003 and arrived in South Korea a year later.

One of the first things Kim’s team created was an e-book called Window to the Global Village. A 204-page primer about South Korea and the rest of the world, it is loaded with embedded video, music, photos, and voice files. The three-gigabyte thumb drive had extra space, so he added a math program for children, a fortune-telling program for adults, games, and a bunch of computer tools.

Read the rest of the story at The Atlantic.


Daylight Savings

Time Vertigo

Sunday, 2 A.M. marks the beginning of daylight savings time and, out of curiosity, Sara and I (OK, mostly Sara) did a little investigation of digital exhibits and resources on its origins. Here are a few resources that we found:

On Time: How America Learned to Live by the Clock

by the National Museum of American History

(We also have the book associated with this exhibit in our collection)

Time Exhibits from the U.S. Official Time Website

One exhibit from this list not to be missed is NIST's "A Walk Through Time."
And let me share with you a new word I learned today: horology.

If you find yourself wondering what time it is on Sunday, come back to this post and check out the widget below (Flash required).

(This widget is a public service provided by the Time and Frequency Division of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). It is a web clock showing the official time of day from NIST, displayed as a 12 or 24-hour clock, in a user-selectable time zone.

The default time zone comes from the time zone setting on the client's computer, and it re-synchronizes with NIST every 10 minutes.)


James Bond supports International Women's Day

Sam Taylor-Wood, director of the piece, said: “Bond is challenged by ‘M’ to think about gender inequality, and I hope that the film encourages viewers to do the same. Despite great advances in women’s rights, statistics show that when it comes to the balance of power between the sexes, equality is far from being a global reality. As ‘M’ reminds Bond, facing up to gender issues and the sometimes covert nature of sexism in the 21st century is something that we all have to recognise, confront and challenge.”

"It's not just about money and power," 'M' tells Bond, as she explains that access to education and freedom from violence are more telling metrics for gauging women's equality.

"So, are we equals?" 'M' asks. "Until the answer is 'Yes' we must never stop asking."



Compare Apple's iPad to iPad2

It's here....Apple's iPad 2, much like the original iPad, has arrived in the marketplace on the shoulders of a huge, cleverly designed marketing blitz. Lance Ulamoff from pcmag.com summarizes new features, and answers questions about what is missing:

Why no memory specs? - because with the new dual core A5 processor chip, performance is hugely improved. No specs were announced, but iPad's 256 MGs have surely been increased.

Why no 4G?- Apple's research indicates that almost 50% of iPad buyers purchased the wi-fi only model, so why develop a 4G model when the 3G model isn't in huge demand?

Why no Apple TV gaming? - wi-fi probably won't support real-time gaming interaction.

Also, no 7-inch tablet, no Flash support, no display resolution boost, no SD card slot or USB ports....

Read the whole article: iPad 2

Volunteers, UN share data to provide humanitarian aid in Libya

Last week I noted a map mashup that aimed to document events occurring in Libya. But the next generation tool is already here, leveraging the experience and labor of Crisis Mappers and others in the Volunteer Technical Community (VTC) with the institutional support of the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

In true UN style, there is a list of common operational datasets incorporated into the map. These datasets provide a skeleton to the Crisis Map, while other data sources - mainstream media, twitter, flickr - flesh out the map and make it a dynamic tool.

View the Libya Crisis Map. (Consider the "Big Map" - last tab on the right, just beneath and adjacaent to the OCHA badge.)


Women's History Month Research Guide

In celebration of Women's History Month, we have created a new research guide, which includes books, documentaries, and films from our collection, as well as web resources.
Check out the Women's History Research Guide

Do you have favorite books, films, or resources related to Women's History?  Submit your suggestions below!  We'll review the entries and add them to our research guide.


iPad 2: "Tech married with the liberal arts"

Check out Engagdet's recent live-blogging of today's unveiling of the new iPad.

11:12AM [Steve Jobs:] "This is worth repeating. It's in Apple's DNA that technology is not enough. It's tech married with the liberal arts and the humanities. Nowhere is that more true than in the post-PC products. Our competitors are looking at this like it's the next PC market. That is not the right approach to this. These are pos-PC devices that need to be easier to use than a PC, more intuitive." (emphasis added)

We shall see, we shall see.


Website recognized as College Library Website of the Month

Our library's website was selected as the "College Library Website of the Month" for February by the College Libraries Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries.  Here's what they had to say:

South Carolina is called the Palmetto State, but palmettos are not a common sight in the state’s Piedmont region, where Wofford College is located.

The facilities at Wofford College’s Sandor Teszler Library are displayed appealingly on the library’s Web site, which includes many photographs of students learning within the library’s walls. A rotating series of events, resources, and archival collections are featured on the home page. The Writing Center, which is located within the library, receives prominent billing. Like many library Web sites, it features a tabbed search box with options for finding books, articles, reserves and subject guides.

Congratulations to Oakley Coburn and the rest of the staff at the Sandor Teszler Library for creating a site that showcases their facility and its resources so well!
Read the announcement
Have feedback on our site?  Let us know!