“A recently rediscovered trunk containing 2,600 letters sent from France, Spain, and the Spanish Netherlands between 1689 and 1706 will soon provide a fascinating glimpse into the plight of the early modern European everyman. These letters remained undelivered — including 600 letters never opened — because their recipients could not be found or would not pay outstanding postage costs. The trunk has been stored in The Hague’s Museum voor Communicatie since 1926. Now, an international team of experts from MIT, Yale University, University of Leiden, University of Groningen, and Oxford Univeristy is exploring each missive in a ground-breaking project called “Signed, Sealed, and Undelivered.” (via MIT)
“The MIT Libraries have just signed a contract with Springer that allows for use of their ejournals and ebooks in MITx courses. This is the first such arrangement with a journal publisher, and Springer is one of the largest journal publishers in the world. The agreement allows for use of 15 book chapters per calendar year (copyrighted 2005 to present) and 15 journal articles per calendar year (copyrighted 1997 to present). Use is via special links that allow for access to all registered course participants, for educational, personal, scientific, or research purposes.” (via MIT)
“The following email was sent today to the MIT community by Provost Martin Schmidt.
To the members of the MIT community: I am writing to let you know that I have asked Chris Bourg, the Director of MIT Libraries, to lead an Ad Hoc Task Force on the Future of Libraries, composed of faculty, staff and students from across the Institute. Because the MIT Libraries play a pivotal role in how scholarly information is communicated among faculty, students and researchers, the future of our educational and research programs depends heavily on services that the Libraries provide.” (via MIT)
“Chris Bourg has been named as the new director of the MIT Libraries, effective in February. Provost Martin Schmidt announced her appointment today in an email to the MIT community. Bourg comes to MIT from Stanford University, where she is currently associate university librarian for public services. At Stanford, Bourg oversees the largest division of the Stanford University Libraries, with six branches and a collection of more than 4 million volumes.” (via MIT)
“The MIT Libraries have signed an agreement with Elsevier, the largest publisher of journal articles in the world, to allow members of the MIT community to text-mine scholarly articles subscribed to through Elsevier’s ScienceDirect service. Typically, licensed access to journals like Elsevier’s does not permit systematic searching or downloading, and excludes the use of software agents, robots, or scripts. This has been a disappointment to many researchers, who wish to take advantage of automated tools to carry out new forms of research, speed up the research process, and enhance discovery and innovation.” (via MIT Libraries)