NPR – “As information becomes more digital, public libraries are striving to redefine their roles. A small number are working to create “hackerspaces,” where do-it-yourselfers share sophisticated tools and their expertise. The Allen County Public Library, which serves the city of Fort Wayne, Ind., has a modest hackerspace inside a trailer in its parking lot. Library director Jeff Krull says hosting it is consistent with the library’s mission.”
NYT – “This city, home to the nation’s first large public library, has a new and somewhat grittier venue for reading. Housed in a green military tent, the library at the Occupy Boston encampment is overflowing with scholarly tomes that have no due dates or late fees.”
UC San Diego – “The estate of Alice Goldfarb Marquis, Ph.D., an accomplished writer, historian and alumna of the University of California, San Diego, has left $1.1 million to support the UC San Diego Libraries. The gift from the Alice G. Marquis Living Trust, which represents the largest bequest ever to the Libraries, will help to maintain and enhance collections and services of the UC San Diego Libraries, with a portion of the gift specifically designated to augment the existing H. Stuart Hughes UCSD Libraries Endowment for Modern European History. The Libraries will also direct some of the funding from the bequest to establish a new study area open 24 hours, five days a week, in Geisel Library.”
O’Reilly – “The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) reports that one in five adults worldwide is still not literate. In this interview, Elizabeth Wood (@lizzywood), director of digital publishing for Worldreader and a speaker at TOC Frankfurt, talks about the social and infrastructure issues affecting literacy and how Worldreader is making a difference. She says Worldreader’s goal is to reach 1 million children by 2015.”
AP – “A project by the libraries at the University of South Carolina has taken 19 newspapers from across the state and made editions between 1860 and 1922 available on a website. A National Endowment for the Humanities grant is paying for the South Carolina Digital Newspaper Program. USC Libraries Dean Tom McNally says the old newspapers help the history of communities come alive.”
AP – “Maurice Sendak’s eyes harden and his off-center smile curls as he considers the idea of writing a memoir. “I didn’t sleep with famous people or movie stars or anything like that. It’s a common story: Brooklyn boy grows up and succeeds in his profession, period,” he explains in his friendly growl. “I hate memoirs. I hate them. What you have is your private life. Why make it public? And how different is it from anybody else’s life? People want to read things like, ‘Did you have an affair with Oprah Winfrey, really and truly?’” The world cares about the 83-year-old Sendak, whether he likes it or not. He’s a dark soul who has been canonized, a hero who never asked for the job. With a sigh, and a wink, he confides that bookstores still contact him for appearances and children still call out and ask if he’s the guy who wrote “Where the Wild Things Are.” He even has an “in” at the White House; President Barack Obama read “Where the Wild Things Are” for the 2009 Easter Egg Roll.
Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library Offers Free Slaughterhouse Five Copies to Students at School that Banned the Book
GalleyCat – “In an inspiring response to censorship, the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library will give away up to 150 free copies of Slaughterhouse Five to high school students in Republic, Missouri. The school board voted to ban Kurt Vonnegut‘s book from the high school library along with Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler. If you believe in this cause, the museum is asking for donations to help pay for shipping for the books.
Daily Texan – “The soft-spoken, bearded library assistant in the Life Science Library doesn’t necessarily have the look of an indie rock guitarist who toured Europe with an acclaimed ’90s indie band, but there’s more to Harold Whit Williams, who recently released his first solo album after taking a break from recording music, than meets the eye. Aside from working in the Life Science Library since 2002, Williams is a musician and a published poet who, over the last two decades, tasted the allure of a rock-star lifestyle, retreated into the stability of a steady job on campus and, recently, began to dabble in music again. The style of his sound and the sensibilities behind it have changed a bit since his days as a guitarist in the band Cotton Mather, but the appeal is still there and he sees exciting times ahead.”
Time – “Annie Platoff, a librarian at UC Santa Barbara, is on a mission to find out what happened to the American flags that astronauts planted on the moon during the six lunar landings. Platoff’s research pinpointed four of them, including the one from Apollo 17, the final lunar mission. At the very least, the nylon national symbols are “tattered” and have “darkened” over the years. She speculates that the other two, planted during Apollo 11 and Apollo 12, fell victim to the ignition gases emitted from the lunar module during blast-off.”
NOLA – “Charlotte Rizzo, the librarian at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School in Kenner, believes educating young students is the key in preserving and conserving nature. Rizzo recently led a year-long wetlands program at the school in hopes of encouraging students to take an interest in saving the wetlands.”