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ZBW German National Library of Economics: Update: New dump of EconStor Linked Dataset available

Tue, 2016-05-17 11:18

We are happy to announce that we have updated our EconStor LOD dump. This dataset now comprises 108k metadata records provided with Semantic Web URIs and partially linked to external datasets like STW and JEL.
The dataset is available at and under a Creative Commons license CC0 1.0.

EconStor LOD Linked data   Repository (publishing)   Economics  

William Denton: Information Please

Tue, 2016-05-17 02:59

If you haven’t heard Information Please, an old American radio panel quiz show, give it a try. Two hundred and nineteen episodes are available on the Internet Archive and easy to download. You’ll have days or weeks of good listening. Podcast listeners who like working through series of shows will especially enjoy it.

Before I say more about Information Please, allow me to indulge myself by listing what I think are the best radio comedies:

  • Cabin Pressure, John Finnemore’s perfectly written and gorgeously acted BBC situation comedy about four people working at a one-airplane airline;
  • Frantic Times, by the Frantics (sketch comedy on the CBC, which evolved into a montage of memorable repeated characters such as the Ultramind, “the greatest evil genius in the history of evil geniuses”);
  • The Great Eastern, a Broadcasting Corporation of Newfoundland arts and culture show picked up by the CBC in the nineties;
  • I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue, BBC’s “antidote to panel games”, running since 1972 but missing Willie Rushton, who died in 1996, and the great Humphrey Lyttelton, who died in 2008;
  • I’m Sorry, I’ll Read That Again, a BBC comedy from 1964–1973; and
  • Our Miss Brooks, on CBS radio from 1948–1957 with the deadpan and sardonic Eve Arden.

For radio panel shows, though, it’s Information Please. Now, the BBC has a lot of wonderful comedy panel shows, two very difficult radio quiz shows (Brain of Britain and Round Britain Quiz), and one fiendishly hard television contest (University Challenge). All of them make Reach for the Top and Jeopardy! look trivial, and even put Half Wits in the shade.

But there’s no show so good-natured, enjoyable, historically interesting and informative as Information Please. It’s hosted by Clifton Fadiman, with regular panelists Franklin P. Adams, John Kieran and Oscar Levant. Each week there’s a guest (or two, if Levant isn’t there), such as Christopher Morley, Fred Allen, Faith Baldwin, Moe Berg, Clare Boothe Luce. It vibes New York, The New Yorker and the Algonquin Round Table.

It’s a simple format: people send in questions, and if the panel can’t get enough of them right, the sender wins a prize. It starts off that they get a set of the Encyclopedia Britannica, but as time goes on and the US enters the war, they get war bonds. The show is sponsored first by Canada Dry, then Lucky Strike (“Lucky Strike means fine tobacco”), then Heinz. There’s a break in the middle where an announcer does an advertisement for the sponsor.

Here are a couple of examples of nice exchanges. The first is from 22 November 1940, with guests Deems Taylor and Lewis E. Lawes, then warden of Sing Sing. Note this is over a year into World War Two, but over a year before the US enters.

Fadiman: Elizabeth Strauss, of this city, sends this one in: What have these four men in common? Very simple question. The four men are: John Bunyan, Oscar Wilde, Adolf Hitler, and Warden Lewis E. Lawes. [Laughter.] Well, we have two hands. Mr. Lawes?

Lawes: Their books [were] all written in jail. It’s too bad some of those you mentioned, besides myself, are not now in jail.

Fadiman: Yes, I can think of one. We hate to put you in the company of Mr. Hitler, but it’s just for the sake of of the question, and just for fun. Can you name the four books, Mr. Lawes, that were written in prison by these four—by these three gentlemen and Mr. Hitler? [Laughter]

Lawes: Well, Mein Kampf, by a non-gentleman, and …

Fadiman: Oscar Wilde?

Lawes: Oscar Wilde, The Ballad of Reading Gaol

Fadiman: I don’t know if that was the one written in prison. Mr. Kieran?

Kieran: I think he wrote Suspiria de Profundis.

Fadiman: Just De Profundis; you’re thinking of de Quincey. And Mr. Taylor?

Taylor: I think he did write The Ballad of Reading Gaol.

Fadiman: I’m not certain of that. I take it back, Warden, if Mr. Taylor says so, he’s probably right.

Taylor: Pilgrim’s Progress might be right.

Fadiman: John Bunyan’s famous book Pilgrim’s Progress also written in prison, that’s quite correct.

Taylor: Warden Lawes’s Meet the Murderer! I’ll give you the last one, it’s still selling.

Fadiman: Did you write that one while in the prison walls, Warden?

Lawes: Yes.

Fadiman: I thought it was Twenty Thousand Years in Sing Sing.

Lawes: Well, I was in the same walls.

Fadiman: Haven’t moved.

Taylor: Well, he could go home, couldn’t he?

Fadiman: You have a home, haven’t you, Warden Lawes?

Lawes: Yes I have a home, but the radio programs are getting so good, like Information Please, I’d stay home and listen to the radio all the time.

Fadiman: Isn’t he a nice man?

Adams: You trying to flatter me?

Lawes: Yes, Mr. Adams.

Adams: You’re doing all right.

From 28 March 1939, with Adams, Kieran, Moss Hart and Rex Stout:

Fadiman: The next one comes from a very eminent author indeed, Mr. Upton Sinclair of Pasadena, California. [The show is] full of famous people tonight. I want you to name five characters from the Old Testament, and I want you to state what each did to deserve the description here given. And you’re going to get five out of five, or I’ll know the reason why. I will probably know the reason why. The most soluble character from the Old Testament. Mr. Adams.

Adams: Lot’s wife.

Fadiman: Why?

Adams: She turned to salt.

Fadiman: Turned to a pillar of salt. Let me have the chemical formula, Mr. Adams.

Adams: NaCl.

Fadiman: Very good, very good. Very easy. The most indigestible. The most indigestible. Mr. Hart.

Hart: Nebuchadnezzar.

Fadiman: Most indigestible? He himself was not indigestible.

Hart: He ate grass, is what I meant.

Fadiman: He himself was not indigestible. Mr. Adams.

Adams: Jonah!

Fadiman: Jonah, yes. Terribly indigestible. Lived in the whale’s belly. The great discomfort of the whale. Now who was the strictest vegetarian?

Hart: Nebuchadnezzar.

Fadiman: Ah, very good, Mr. Hart. (Laughs.) Nebuchadnezzar, who did eat grass as oxen. And the outstanding monopolist of the Old Testament. The outstanding monopolist. Mr. Kieran.

Kieran: Joseph.

Fadiman: And why do you say that?

Kieran: Because he gathered up all the crops in Egypt and stored them for seven fat years.

Stout: A more dangerous one was Solomon: he gathered up all the wives.

Fadiman: Say, there’s a monopoly.

Adams: Dangerous to whom? Solomon?

Fadiman: How about the severest music critic? This is really a sticker. The severest music critic in the Old Testament.

Stout: David.

Fadiman: Why do you say that? Critic, I say.

Stout: Oh, critic.

Fadiman: You know what a critic is. You must have had some experience after your books were published, Mr. Stout. The answer is Saul, who threw a spear at David while he was playing the harp.

Stout: I had David on the wrong end.

Fadiman: Rather pointed criticism. Well, we got one wrong. We were supposed to get five out of five. Canada Dry is going to send five dollars to Mr. Upton Sinclair, with its compliments.

Upton Sinclair! The next question was sent in by Ellery Queen. In the same show it emerges that Moss Hart lives at the Waldorf Astoria. The episode ends with the announcement that Dorothy Parker will be next week’s guest. Dorothy Parker!

The wit, wisecracks and joking make it all worth hearing, but the attention to and insight about current events, especially during the war, make it even more so. The attention Oscar Levant paid to foreign politics and troop movements surprised me.

The shows are all available from the Internet Archive: page one, two, and three. You can listen to them there or download them to your device.

A small technical note. The shows will work fine as they are, but to clean up the metadata I ran this:

for I in Information_Please_-_*; do DATE=`id3info $I | grep TALB | sed 's/.*: //' | sed 's/[Y,].*//'`; TITLE=`id3info $I | grep TIT2 | sed 's/.*: //'`; NEWTITLE="$TITLE ($DATE)"; echo $NEWTITLE; id3v2 --TIT2 "$NEWTITLE" --TALB "Information Please" "$I"; done

pinboard: Extending Library Carpentry · Issue #34 · mozillascience/global-sprint-2016 · GitHub

Tue, 2016-05-17 00:24
RT @yo_bj: #lt It looks like Library Carpentry has a project in for the Mozilla Global Spring #mashcat #code4lib

DuraSpace News: TUNE IN to Current Hydra-in-a-Box Project Demos

Tue, 2016-05-17 00:00

Austin, TX  Curious about how the far-reaching Hydra-in-a-Box project is progressing? “Hydra-in-a-Box”, as it is nicknamed, aims to foster a new, national, library network through a community-based repository system, enabling discovery, interoperability and reuse of digital resources by people from the U. S. and around the world. If you have a spare ten minutes you can tune in to YouTube and get the latest updates on ongoing design and development work from the Hydra-in-a-Box team.

DuraSpace News: Shine On–The DSpace Repository Community at OR2016

Tue, 2016-05-17 00:00

Austin, TX  Are recent DSpace open source repository software advances of interest to you? Here are several opportunities to catch up on what the the DSpace community is engaged in and planning if you will attend the 11th Annual International Conference on Open Repositories Conference (#OR2016) next month, June 13-16, in Dublin, Ireland.

DSpace Developer and DCAT (DSpace Community Advisory Team) Meeting

• Monday, 13/Jun/2016: 9:00am - 11:00am

Dan Cohen: The Digital Divide and Digital Reading: An Update

Mon, 2016-05-16 18:21

Last month I wrote an article for The Atlantic on the state of the digital divide, the surprisingly high rate of device (smartphone and tablet) adoption at all socio-economic strata, and what these new statistics mean for ebooks and reading. An excerpt:

According to Common Sense, 51 percent of teenagers in low-income families have their own smartphones, and 48 percent of tweens in those families have their own tablets. Note that these are their own devices, not devices they have to borrow from someone else. Among middle-income families (that is, between $35,000 and $100,000), 53 percent of tweens have their own tablets and 69 percent of teenagers have their own smartphones, certainly higher but by a lot less than one might imagine.

If we pull back and look at households in general, the gap narrows in other ways. This winter, the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop published the first nationally representative telephone survey of lower-income parents on issues related to digital connectivity. The study, conducted by the research firm SSRS, included nearly 1,200 parents with school-aged children, interviewed in both Spanish and English, via landlines and cell phones. It was weighted to be representative of the American population.

In this comprehensive survey, a striking 85 percent of families living below the poverty line have some kind of digital device, smartphone or tablet, in their household. Seventy-three percent had one or more smartphones, compared to 84 percent for families above the poverty line. These are vastly changed numbers from just a few years ago. A 2011 study by Common Sense showed that in lower-income (under $30,000) households with children, only 27 percent of them had a smartphone, compared to 57 percent for households with children and income over $75,000.

It’s worth pondering the significance of these new numbers, and how we might be able to leverage widespread device adoption to increase reading. My conclusion:

We must do everything we can to connect kids with books. Print books, ebooks, library books, bookstores—let’s have it all. Let’s give children access to books whenever and wherever, whether it’s a paperback in the backpack, or a phone in the back pocket.

[Read the full article at The Atlantic.]

Access Conference: Diversity Scholarships: Call for Applications

Mon, 2016-05-16 15:28

The Access 2016 Planning Committee is pleased to announce that we will be offering Diversity Scholarships to help valued members of our community attend Access 2016 in Fredericton, NB!

Each year, Access conference planners set aside funds to support a minimum of two scholarships, but thanks to a generous donation, two additional scholarships will be available in 2016! A total of 4 scholarships, valued at up to $1000 CAD each, will be awarded to help offset the cost of registration, travel, and accommodation for Access 2016!

Each applicant must self-identify as a member of a traditionally under-represented and/or marginalized group in technology communities, including, but not limited to, those based on gender identity, race, sexuality, or physical ability. Applicants must also be unable to attend the conference without some financial assistance (student, unemployed, underemployed, or working at a company/institution that does not support professional development).

If you’ve received a Diversity Scholarship to attend Access in either of the past two years (2014 or 2015), we would appreciate it if you would hold off this year to give other under-represented members of our community a chance to participate.

For more information on the Diversity Scholarship Program, consult the scholarship plan. A more extensive, but not exhaustive, list of what we mean by a traditionally underrepresented and/or marginalized group is also available. That said, we think you’re the best person to identify if you are a member of a traditionally under-represented or marginalized group: don’t feel constrained by this list!

How to Apply:

Application Criteria:

  • You self-identify as a member of a traditionally under-represented/marginalized group (see extended list, above)
  • You are unable to attend the conference without financial assistance (i.e. you are a student, unemployed, underemployed, or lack funding for professional development).

Application Process:

  • Send an email to no later than June 17, 2016, detailing your background and interest in library technology and how you think Access will advance your professional development. No more than 300-500 words, please!
  • Please attach an updated resume or CV.
  • That’s it! We don’t need proof of your eligibility. We trust you!

How We’ll Decide

If you meet the criteria listed above and follow the application guidelines, we’ll throw your name into the hat for a scholarship. At a planning committee meeting in June, we will draw names and those people will be awarded scholarships. Successful applicants will be contacted via email no later than June 24.

LITA: LITA Forum Assessment Task Force Survey

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:28

Dear Colleagues,

The LITA Forum Assessment Task Force wants your opinions about the impact of LITA Forum and how it fits within the library technology conference landscape. We invite everyone who works in the overlapping space between libraries and technology, whether or not you belong to LITA or have attended the LITA Forum recently (or at all), to take a short survey:

We anticipate this survey will take approximately 10 minutes to complete. Participation is anonymous unless you provide your email address for potential follow-up questions. The survey closes on Friday, May 27th, 2016, so don’t delay!

We will summarize what we learn from this survey on the LITA Blog after July 1st. If you have any questions or are having problems completing the survey, please feel free to contact:

Jenny Taylor ( or Ken Varnum (

We thank you in advance for taking the time to provide us with this important information.

Jenny Taylor
Co-Chair, LITA Forum Assessment Task Force

Ken Varnum
Co-Chair, LITA Forum Assessment Task Force

LITA: Transmission #4

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:14

In a fun-filled fourth episode, Begin Transmission sits down with John Klima, Assistant Director at the Waukesha Public Library and LITA Blogger. Learn about Klima’s commitment to public service and steampunk expertise.

Begin Transmission will return with our fifth episode on May 31st.

D-Lib: Scientific Stewardship in the Open Data and Big Data Era -- Roles and Responsibilities of Stewards and Other Major Product Stakeholders

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Article by Ge Peng, Cooperative Institute for Climate and Satellites-North Carolina (CICS-NC), North Carolina State University and NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), Nancy A. Ritchey, NCEI, Kenneth S. Casey, NCEI, Edward J. Kearns, NCEI, Jeffrey L. Privette, NCEI, Drew Saunders, NCEI, Philip Jones, STG, Inc, Tom Maycock, CICS-NC/NCEI, and Steve Ansari, NCEI

D-Lib: Report from the Sixth Annual DuraSpace Member Summit, March 2016

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Conference Report by Carol Minton Morris, DuraSpace

D-Lib: Linking Publications and Data: Challenges, Trends, and Opportunities

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Conference Report by Matthew S. Mayernik and Jennifer Phillips, NCAR/UCAR Library, National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR); Eric Nienhouse, Computational and Information Systems Lab, National Center for Atmospheric Research, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR)

D-Lib: Institutional Repositories: Home for Small Scholarly Journals?

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Article by Julie Kelly and Linda Eells, University of Minnesota

D-Lib: Stewardship

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Editorial by Laurence Lannom, CNRI

D-Lib: Customization of Open Source Applications to Support a Multi-Institution Digital Repository Using DSpace

Mon, 2016-05-16 14:13
Article by Youssef Benchouaf, Daniel Hamp and Mark Shelstad, Colorado State University