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DuraSpace News: OpenBU Adopts @mire's Managed Hosting

planet code4lib - Fri, 2015-02-20 00:00

By Ignace Deroost, @mire  

DuraSpace News: Play to Grow Your DSpace Development Skills

planet code4lib - Fri, 2015-02-20 00:00

From Ignace Deroost, @mire  When looking at the Github language statistics for the DSpace project, one could easily assume that a solid background in Java is all it takes to tackle most DSpace development challenges.

District Dispatch: Education and school library legislation is heating up

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 22:01

It’s record cold in D.C., but we’re busy meeting with Senate staffers trying to promote school libraries. Both U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Chairman Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-MN) have committed to passing a reauthorization bill for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). In late January, Sen. Alexander released his discussion draft and received a lot of push back from the education community….including school libraries because libraries were not well integrated into the legislation. There was no acknowledgement of the importance of effective school library programs. He declared that the Committee would pass the bill out of committee the last week of February.

Tell Sen. Lamar Alexander to include school library program in ESEA reauthorization.(Photo by DOE PHOTO/Ken Shipp)

Sen. Alexander then met with HELP Committee Ranking Member Sen. Patty Murray and they decided that they would make Sen. Alexander’s bill more bipartisan, which will take some time. So the committee marking up the bill is pushing the markup to March. But the House passed their bill out of committee, with no amendments for school libraries passing in the committee.

Library advocates are calling their Senators about the SKILLS Act to see how much can be included for an effective school library program. This legislation has been so hard to pass–Congress has been trying since 2006 and they haven’t completed it yet–so we need to stay tuned. To learn more on ESEA legislative activities this Congress, read up on the SKILLS Act.

Take action for school library funding now!

The post Education and school library legislation is heating up appeared first on District Dispatch.

District Dispatch: ALA joins lengthy list of groups calling for balanced deficit reduction

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 18:09

In 2013, the Bipartisan Budget Act negotiated by Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) provided partial, temporary relief from sequestration. With the return of full sequestration in 2016, the American Library Association (ALA) is collaborating with NDD United, an alliance of organizations working together to protect nondefense discretionary funding, to renew efforts to bring an end to sequestration.

Today, ALA joined NDD United and more than 2,100 organizations from across all sectors of the economy and society to urge Congress and President Obama to work together to end sequestration. The letter (pdf) emphasizes (1) the importance of nondefense discretionary (NDD) programs, (2) the harmful effects of budget cuts to date, and (3) the equal importance of both defense and nondefense programs in America’s security at home and abroad, and thus the need for equal sequestration relief.

Sequestration cuts had significant impact on federal library programs. For example, school libraries already suffering from budget cuts, saw a 12.5 percent cut in Innovative Approaches to Literacy making less grant money available for low-income school libraries. LSTA funding was reduced nearly $10 million which reduced libraries abilities to provide services for education, employment and entrepreneurship, community engagement, and individual empowerment.

NDD published “Faces of Austerity” in 2013.

Cuts to date have had significant impacts on the lives of Americans as demonstrated in NDD United’s 2013 report “Faces of Austerity: How Budget Cuts Make Us Sicker, Poorer, and Less Secure (pdf).” Deficit reduction measures enacted since 2010 have come overwhelmingly from spending cuts, with the ratio of spending cuts to revenue increases far beyond those recommended by bipartisan groups of experts. And there is bipartisan agreement that sequestration is bad policy and ultimately hurts our nation. However, so far, Congress and the President have not been able to agree on other deficit reduction to replace the damaging cuts. As work begins on the 2016 budget, it is critical that Congress and the President find a replacement to sequestration to allow the government to keep making appropriate investments in Americans.

The post ALA joins lengthy list of groups calling for balanced deficit reduction appeared first on District Dispatch.

HangingTogether: The Five Stages of Code4Lib

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 16:22

View of the Williamette River and Mount Hood from Downtown Portland OR

I had the good fortune to attend the Code4Lib 2015 conference in Portland OR last week.  It was a great event as usual, but it’s an event that I don’t always get to attend in person.  Does anyone else go through these five stages during the conference?  Right, me neither.

  1. I’m very familiar with all current technologies, but let’s see what others are up to.
  2. Oh, wait, it turns out that I don’t know anything and don’t belong here.
  3. Then again, I understood that last presentation and could totally do what they did.
  4. So now I need to throw out all my code and rewrite my apps using that framework I just heard about for the first time.
  5. I’m heading over to the Multnomah Whisk{e}y Library, anybody else interested?

About Bruce Washburn

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DPLA: Family Bible records as genealogical resources

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 15:45

Family tree from the Bullard family Bible records. Courtesy of the State Archives of North Carolina via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center.

Interested in using DPLA to do family research, but aren’t sure where to start? Consider the family Bible. There are two large family Bible collections in DPLA—over 2,100 (transcribed) from the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, and another 90 from the South Carolina Digital Library. They’re filled with rich information about family connections and provide insight into how people of the American South lived and died during the—mainly—18th and 19th centuries.

Prior to October 1913 in North Carolina, and January 1915 in South Carolina, vital records (birth and death, specifically) were not documented at the state level. Some cities and counties kept official records before then, and in other cases births and deaths were documented—when at all—by churches or families. Private birth, death, and marriage events were most often recorded in family Bibles, which have become rich resources for genealogists in search of early vital records.

Family Bibles are Bibles passed down from one generation of relatives to the next. In some cases, such as the 1856 version held by the Hardison family, the Bible had pages dedicated to recording important events. In others, the inside covers or page margins were used to document births, deaths, and marriages. The earliest recorded date in a family Bible in DPLA is the birth of John Bullard in 1485.

Not only do family Bibles record the dates and names of those born, died, or married, but these valuable resources may identify where an event took place as well. Oftentimes, based on the way in which the event was recorded, the reader can sense the joy or heartache the recorder felt when they inscribed it in the Bible (for example, see the Jordan family Bible, page 8). You’ll even find poetry, schoolwork, correspondence, news clippings, and scribbles in family Bibles that provide insight into a family’s private life that might otherwise be lost (for examples, see the Abraham Darden, Gladney, and Henry Billings family Bibles).

Slave list, Horton family Bible records. Courtesy of the State Archives of North Carolina via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center.

Family Bibles—especially those from the southern US—may be of particular interest to African American genealogists whose ancestry trails often go cold prior to the Civil War. Before the 1860s, there is little documentary evidence that ancestors even existed  beyond first names and estimated ages in bills of sale, wills, or property lists produced during slavery. Family Bibles are some of the only documents that contain the names of slaves, and in rare cases their ages, birthdates, and parentage.

A search on the subject term “Bible Records AND African Americans,” in the collection from the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, returns a set of 142 North Carolina family Bibles that contain at least one documented slave name. In a few cases, the list can extend to ten or more (for example, Simmons Family Bible, page 4). This information enables African American genealogists to begin to trace their ancestry to a place and time in history.

Because African Americans are listed among the slaveholding family’s names, it can sometimes be difficult to discern which are family members and which are their slaves, so some care is required when working with these records. Generally, slaves are listed without last names (for example, see page 7 of the Horton Family Bible).

Whether you are a family researcher or are simply interested in American history, the family Bibles from North and South Carolina will be of great interest. They tell deeply personal stories and expose a rich history hidden in the private collections of American citizens that remind us that all history is truly local.


Featured image credit: Detail from page 2 of the Debnam Family Bible Records. Courtesy of the State Archives of North Carolina via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center.

All written content on this blog is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. All images found on this blog are available under the specific license(s) attributed to them, unless otherwise noted.

District Dispatch: Tweet questions about fair use and media resources

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 15:11

Next week is Fair Use Week so let’s celebrate with a copyright tweetchat on Twitter. On February 25th from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern), legal expert Brandon Butler will be our primary “chatter” on fair use.

There are few specific copyright exceptions that libraries and educational institutions can rely on that deal specifically with media, so reliance on fair use is often the only option for limiting copyright when necessary. The wide array of media formats both analog and digital, the widespread availability of media content, the importance of media in the teaching and research, in addition to advances in computer technologies and digital networks were unheard of in the 1960-70s when Congress drafted the current copyright law.

But Congress recognized that a flexible exception like fair use would be an important user exception especially in times of dramatic change. Fair use can address the unexpected copyright situation that will occur in the future. Particularly with media, it’s a whole new world.

The tweetchat will address concerns like the following:

  • Can I make a digital copy of this video?
  • When is a public performance public?
  • When can I break digital rights technology on DVDs?
  • Is the auditorium a classroom?
  • How can libraries preserve born-digital works acquired via a license agreement?
  • And my favorite: What about YouTube? What can we do with YouTube?

Ask Brandon Butler your media question. Participate in the Twitter tweetchat by using #videofairuse on February 25, 2015, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. EST.

Brandon Butler has plenty experience with fair use. He is a Practitioner-in-Residence at American University’s Washington College of Law, where he supervises student attorneys in the Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic and teaches about copyright and fair use. Brandon is the co-facilitator, with Peter Jaszi and Patricia Aufderheide, of the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries, a handy guide to thinking clearly about fair use published by the Association of Research Libraries and endorsed by all the major library associations, including the American Library Association (ALA).

Special thanks to Laura Jenemann for planning this event. Laura is Media Librarian and Liaison Librarian, Film Studies and Dance, at George Mason University, VA. She is also the current Chair of ALA’s Video Round Table.

The post Tweet questions about fair use and media resources appeared first on District Dispatch.

LITA: Tools for Creating & Sharing Slide Decks

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 13:00

Lately I’ve taken to peppering my Twitter network with random questions. Sometimes my questions go unanswered but other times I get lively and helpful responses. Such was the case when I asked how my colleagues share their slide decks.

Figuring out how to share my slide decks has been one of those things that consistently falls to the bottom of my to-do list. It’s important to me to do so because it means I can share my ideas beyond the very brief moment in time that I’m presenting them, allowing people to reuse and adapt my content. Now that I’m hooked on the GTD system using Trello, though, I said to myself, “hey girl, why don’t you move this from the someday/maybe list and actually make it actionable.” So I did.

Here’s my dilemma. When I was a library school student I began using SlideShare. There are a lot of great things about it – it’s free, it’s popular, and there are a lot of integrations. However… I’m just not feeling the look of it anymore. I don’t think it has been updated in years, resulting in a cluttered, outdated design. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m snobby when it comes to this sort of thing. I also hate that I can’t reorder slide decks once they’re uploaded. I would like to make sure my decks are listed in some semblance of chronological order but in order to do so I have to upload them in backwards order. It’s just crazy annoying how little control you have over the final arrangement and look of the slides.

So now that you’ve got the backstory, this is where the Twitter wisdom comes in. As it turns out, I learned about more than slide sharing platforms – I also found out about some nifty ways to create slide decks that made me feel like I’ve been living under a rock for the past few years. Here are some thoughts on HaikuDeck, HTMLDecks, and SpeakerDeck.


screenshot: plenty of styling options + formats

This is really sleek and fun. You can create an account for free (beta version) and pull something together quickly. Based on the slide types HaikuDeck provides you with, you’re shepherded down a delightfully minimalistic path – you can of course create densely overloaded slides but it’s a little harder than normal. Because this is something I’m constantly working on, I am appreciative.

I haven’t yet created and presented using a slide deck from HaikuDeck but I’m going to make that a goal for this spring. However, you can see a quick little test slide deck here. I made it in about two minutes and it has absolutely no meaningful content, it’s just meant to give you an easy visual of one of their templates. (Incentive: make it through all three slides and you’ll find a picture of a giant cat.)

One thing to keep in mind is that you’ll want to do all of your editing within HaikuDeck. If you export to Powerpoint, nothing will be editable because each slide exports as an image. This could be problematic if you needed to do last minute edits and didn’t have an internet connection. Also, beware: at least one user has shared that it ate her slides.


screenshot: handy syntax chart + space to build, side-by-side

This is a simple way to build a basic slide deck using HTML. I don’t think it could get any simpler and I’m actually struggling with what to write that would be helpful for you to know about it. To expand what you can do, learn more about Markdown.

From what I can tell, there is no export feature – you do need to pull up your slide deck in a browser and present from there. Again, this makes me a little nervous given the unreliable nature of some internet connections.

I see the appeal of HTMLDecks, though I’m not sure it’s for me. (Anyone want to change my mind by pointing to your awesome slide deck? Show me in the comments!)


screenshot: clean + simple interface for uploading your slides

I was so dejected when I looked at my sad SlideShare account. SpeakerDeck renewed my faith. This is the one for me!

What’s not to love? SpeakerDeck has the clean look I’ve craved and it automatically orders your slides based on the date you gave your presentation, most recent slides listed toward the top. Check out my profile here to see all of this in action.

One drawback is that by making the jump to SpeakerDeck I lost the number of views that I had accumulated over the years. On the same note, SpeakerDeck doesn’t integrate with my ImpactStory profile in the same way that SlideShare does. I haven’t published much so my main stats come from my slide decks. Not sure what I’m going to do about that yet, beyond lobby the lovely folks at ImpactStory to add SpeakerDeck integration.

One thing I would like to see a slide sharing platform implement is shared ownership of slides. I asked SpeakerDeck about whether they offered this functionality; they don’t at this time. You see, I give a lot of presentations on behalf of a group I lead, Research Data Services (RDS). Late last year I created a SlideShare account for RDS. I would love nothing more than to be able to link my RDS slide decks to my personal account so that they show up in both accounts.

Lastly, I would be remiss as a data management evangelizer if I didn’t note that placing the sole copies of your slides (or any files) on a web service is an incredibly bad idea. It’s akin to teenagers now keeping their photos on Facebook or Instagram and deleting the originals, a tale so sad it could keep me up at night. A better idea is to keep two copies of your final slide deck: one saved as an editable file and the other saved as a PDF. Then upload a copy of the PDF to your slide sharing platform. (Sidenote: I haven’t always been as diligent about keeping track of these files. They’ve lived in various versions of google drive, hard drives, and been saved as email attachments… basically all the bad things that I am employed to caution against. Lesson? We are all vulnerable to the slow creep of many versions in many places but it’s never too late to stop the digital hoarding.)

How do you share your slide decks? Do you have any other platforms, tools, or tips to share with me? Do tell.

Open Knowledge Foundation: Announcing the Open Data Day Coalition micro-grantees

planet code4lib - Thu, 2015-02-19 12:27

Two weeks back a coalition of Open Data Day supporters announced a micro-grant scheme in an open call for groups with good ideas for Open Data Day activities. The response was overwhelming and over 75 groups from all corners of the world found the time to send in an application for one of the 300 USD micro-grants.

We were absolutely overwhelmed with the number of applications and sadly could only reward a small fraction of them, despite the vast majority being more than worthy of financial support. Through dire deliberations the following groups were selected:

We, the coalition behind the micro-grants, congratulate them all and look forward to help them alongside all other groups organizing Open Data Day activities.

For all the groups who were unfortunately not awarded funds this time around, we were still tremendously excited to read about their plans. We were severely limited in the funds we had available and are disappointed that we couldn’t support more groups! We hope that those groups will still be able to carry on and organize their planned event and we are here to provide . The vast majority of Open Data Day events are organized without budget, and in the spirit of the global volunteer community we hope that they will be able to as well! We look forward to support all Open Data Day organizers in other ways and will be pushing Open Data Day heavily on social media, blog posts etc.

If you have plans to organise an event, don’t forget to add it to the wiki and on the official Open Data Day world map of events. It’s still not too late to organise, so roll up your sleeves and jump into it! More than 200 events are already in progress, let’s reach 300!

See Spanish translation of this post.

HangingTogether: Re-inventing the scholarly record: taking inspiration from Renaissance Florence

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 23:15

Ponte Vecchio, Florence Italy


On February 11th, we presented the Evolving Scholarly Record (ESR) Framework at the EMEA Regional Council annual meeting, in Florence. The topic was on spot, as the plenary talks preceding the ESR break-out session had paved the way for a more in-depth discussion of how libraries can re-invent their future stewardship roles in the digital domain.

Keynote David Weinberger had argued compellingly the day before, that the Web was a much better place for information to be in than the fixed physical containers of books and journals, and that its shape allowed for unlimited expansion, so that “on the web, nothing is filtered out, only filtered forward.” He continued to say: “Researchers like to put their findings on the web because it allows for discussion and a multiplicity of views, including disagreement.” In the follow-up session, Jim Neal made the same observation but phrased it somewhat differently, saying “researchers dump their work everywhere,” denouncing the “repository chaos” and asking who was responsible for ensuring scholarly integrity on the web? He sent a strong message about the need to decide what of continuing value should be preserved and the imperative to devise new types of cooperative strategies to steer the scholarly ecosystem in the right direction.

As the first speaker at the ESR-break-out session, I presented the Framework, highlighting: 1) the scattering of research outputs on the web and the expanding boundaries of the scholarly record, 2) the increased use of common web platforms by scholars for sharing their work at the risk of compromising scholarly integrity practices and of losing the ability to capture and preserve the scholarly record and 3) the fast changing configuration of stakeholder roles and the need for innovative practices to ensure that the recording of the ESR is organized in consistent and reliable ways.  Ulf-Göran Nilsson (Jönköping University) wondered if the Framework might benefit from being complemented with an underlying economic framework, as he argued that the journal subscription model determined the traditional “Fix” and “Collect” roles of publishers and libraries respectively. He suggested that the economic models for OA-publishing are similarly likely to affect the dynamics of the ESR-stakeholder roles. Cendrella Habre (Lebanese American University) asked what libraries should do to start addressing the ESR-problem space?

Brian Schottlaender (UC San Diego), our second speaker, gave an enlightening reaction. He spoke about “rising to the stewardship challenge” and described how the curation of research data is becoming an increasingly important part of the stewardship tasks of the scholarly record. His “full-spectrum stewardship”-diagram gave a process view of the SR, with 1) the scholarly raw material as “inputs,” 2) the scholarly enquiry and discourse as “operators” and 3) scholarly publishing as “outputs.” Whilst libraries have traditionally focused on the outputs, they are now hiring archivists to capture the raw data as well. John MacColl (St Andrews), our third speaker/reactor, lifted the session to higher policy-levels – stressing the need for community conversations and for taking ownership of and control over stewardship. He thought the ESR-Framework could be instrumental in identifying problems and inefficiencies – and, solving these would in turn help counter chaos and “surrendering to the web.” With his metaphor of librarians as “hydraulic engineers of information flow,” he came full circle back to the theme of the Florentine meeting: “The art of invention.”


The talks will have inspired the audience to ask questions and to add their perspectives to the discussion – however there was too little time left. I would therefore like to invite those who attended and those who read this blog post, to leave their comments behind and to continue the conversation right here!

About Titia van der Werf

Titia van der Werf is a Senior Program Officer in OCLC Research based in OCLC's Leiden office. Titia coordinates and extends OCLC Research work throughout Europe and has special responsibilities for interactions with OCLC Research Library Partners in Europe. She represents OCLC in European and international library and cultural heritage venues.

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Cynthia Ng: Using Regex in MarcEdit to Fix Repeated Subfields in MARC records

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 23:07
Can you tell I’ve been doing a lot of MARC work? UPDATE: Apparently this is possible as a one step regex process. Go see Terry’s comment below! Ah well, live and learn. The Problem Today’s problem is repeated subfields. I don’t even have a particular use case for this except that I received a set … Continue reading Using Regex in MarcEdit to Fix Repeated Subfields in MARC records

LITA: Jobs in Information Technology: February 18

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 20:53

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week

Library Technology Professional 2, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM

Systems & Information Technology Librarian (Assistant Professor), NYC College of Technology,  New York City,  NY

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a  job posting.


District Dispatch: What we’ve been up to

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 19:01

Photo by Joel Penner

If you have been following us here on District Dispatch, you probably have a pretty good idea what sort of policy and legislation we have had our attention turned to the past few months. From net neutrality to 3D printing, we do our best to keep you up to date on the happenings relevant to libraries here in the District.

That said, maybe you are new to District Dispatch! Or maybe you just can’t get enough of those Washington updates! Whatever the case, I present to you the latest 6 month report from the Washington Office. Find out what has been going on behind the scenes at the Office of Government Relations and the Office for Information Technology Policy by clicking the link below (PDF).

6 Month Report 2015

The post What we’ve been up to appeared first on District Dispatch.

Islandora: Islandora Camp EU2 - What to Expect

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 18:26

Islandora Camp in Madrid is still several months away and we are still accepting proposals for presentations from the community, but we wanted to give a little preview of the kind of content you can expect, for those who might still be on the fence about attending.

Day One

On the first day of camp we address Islandora software and the community from a broad perspective. There are some standard topics that we cover at every camp, because they are always relevant and there are always updates:

  • An update on the project and what is happening in the community
  • A look at innovative Islandora sites around the world
  • A look at the current software stack and modules in our latest release (which, by the time if iCampEU2, will be Islandora 7.x-1.5)

On the not-so-standard front, we will have Fedora 4 Integration Project Director Nick Ruest as part of our Camp instructor team, and he will be giving an update and (hopefully) an early demo of our Fedora 4/Islandora 7.x integration.

Day Two

The second day of Islandora Camp is all about hands-on experience. If you are a librarian, archivist, or other front-end Islandora user (or interested in becoming one), the Admin track will go over how to use Islandora via its front-end menus and GUIs. We will cover basic site set up, collections, single and batch ingests, security configuration, and setting up Solr for discoverability. For the more technically inclined, we have a Dev track that delves into Islandora from the code side culminating in the development of s custom Islandora module so you can learn how it's done.

Day Three

The last day of the event is turned over to more specific presentation and sessions from the community. Right now we are looking at some sessions on linked data, FRBRoo ontologies in Islandora, themeing, and multi-lingual Islandoras, but our Call for Proposals is open until March 1st, so this line up could change. If you have something you'd like to share with the Islandora Community, please send us your proposal!

If you have any questions about Islandora Camp in Madrid, please contact me.

DPLA: What DPLA and DLF Can Learn from Code4lib

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 16:00

This post has been crossposted to the Digital Library Federation blog.

Code4lib 2015 was held last week from February 9-12, 2015 in Portland, Oregon. The Code4lib conferences have grown in the last ten years, both in terms of size and scope of topics. This growth is particularly impressive when you consider that much of the work of organizing the conference falls upon a circulating group of volunteers, with additional organizational support from organizations like the Digital Library Federation. It has become clear to me that the Code4lib community is interested in ensuring that it can develop and support compelling and useful conferences for everyone who chooses to participate.

I believe communities like Code4lib are important for organizations like the Digital Public Library of America and the DLF in several ways. First, Code4lib conferences provide a structure that allows its community members to have venue to act on areas of interest. While Code4lib has a similar process to the DLF Forum for selecting sessions, the key difference is there are ample opportunities with semi-structured time for community members to self-organize. For example, each Code4lib conference has multiple blocks for five-minute lightning talks that open for signup at the conference itself. These presentations are often the most memorable content from the Code4lib conferences, as they include an element of risk, such as a live demo, an unrehearsed presentation, or untested ideas. Code4lib also ensures ample time for breakout sessions. Like lightning talks, topics for breakout sessions are determined at the conference itself, rather than in advance. These topics can range quite widely, from working sessions to collaborate on software development, to discussing ways to work through very specific but shared problems.

Secondly, Code4lib and communities like it provide a forum to talk through their values openly and honestly. While it was not an easy conversation, the community deliberated and ultimately developed a code of conduct for its conference and online channels. Conference presentations at this year’s Code4lib have also made it clear that there are social implications for the cultural heritage technology community in terms of how we adopt, develop, and release open source software, such as “Your Code Does Not Exist in a Vacuum” by Becky Yoose, and Jason Casden and Bret Davidson’s presentation, “Beyond Open Source.” Other important presentations from this year that talk about values within our community include Jennie Rose Halperin’s “Our $50,000 Problem: Why Library School?”; Margaret Heller, Christina Salazar and May Yan’s “How To Hack it as a Working Parent”; and the two keynote presentations by Selena Deckelmann and Andromeda Yelton.

Finally, Code4lib is important to organizations like DLF and DPLA because it provides the opportunity to have a strong regional focus. When community members have significant interest to see an event in their region, they are welcome to organize regional meetings or groups along the same rough model. So far, this has included several regional meetings in the United States and Canada, as well as two regional groups in Europe, Code4lib Japan, and Code4GLAM Australia. Having this flexibility can make it easier for people access to large travel budgets to participate in a larger community, and can improve outreach opportunities for organizations like DPLA and DLF.

DPLA and DLF have a great opportunity to support and learn more from the vibrant Code4lib community, by encouraging members within our networks to self-organize in similar ways. In particular, we at DPLA look forward to providing an opportunity to do this at DPLAfest 2015, to be held April 17-18, 2015 in Indianapolis. We are particularly eager to see members of the DLF and Code4lib communities attend and participate in shaping large-scale cultural heritage networks for the future. In addition, DPLA and DLF are offering DPLAfest 2015 cross-pollinator travel grants to support attendance by staff from DLF members not currently part of a DPLA Hub team. Please consider applying – we would love to support your attendance!

LITA: The Internet of Things

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 13:00


Internet Access Here Sign by Steve Rhode. Published on Flickr under a CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 license.

Intel announced in January that they are developing a new chip called Curie that will be the size of a button and it is bound to push The Internet of Things (IoT) forward quickly. The IoT is a concept where everyday items (refrigerators, clothes, cars, kitchen devices, etc.) will be connected to the internet.

The first time I heard of IoT was in the 2014 Horizon Report for K-12. Yes, I’m a little slow sometimes… There is also a new book out that was shared with me by one of the fellow LITA Bloggers, Erik Sandall, by David Rose titled Enchanted Objects: Design, Human Desire, and the Internet of Things. If you want an interesting read on this topic I recommend checking it out (a little library humor).

When I first heard of IoT, I thought it was really interesting, but wasn’t sure how quickly it would fully arrive. With Intel’s new chip I can imagine it arriving sooner than I thought. Last month, I blogged about Amazon Echo, and Echo fits in nicely with IoT.  I have to say that I’d really like to see more librarians jump on IoT and start a conversation on how information will be disseminated when our everyday items are connected to the internet.

According to the author of an article in Fast Company, IoT is going to make libraries even better! There was an article written in American Libraries by Mariam Pera on IoT, Lee Rainie did a presentation at Internet Librarian, and Ned Potter wrote about it on his blog.   But there is room for more conversation.

If anyone is interested in this conversation, please reach out!


If you could have one device always connected to the internet what would it be? You can’t say your phone.

Open Knowledge Foundation: Call for Applications: School of Data 2015 Fellowship programme now open!

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 10:26

We’re very happy to open today our 2015 Call for School of Data Fellowships!

Apply here

Following our successful 2014 School of Data Fellowships, we’re opening today our Call for Applications for the 2015 Fellowship programme. As with last year’s programme, we’re looking to find new data trainers to spread data skills around the world.

As a School of Data fellow, you will receive data and leadership training, as well as coaching to organise events and build your community in your country or region. You will also be part of a growing global network of School of Data practitioners, benefiting from the network effects of sharing resources and knowledge and contributing to our understanding about how best to localise our training efforts.

As a fellow, you’ll be part of a nine-month training programme where you’ll work with us for an average of ten working days a month, including attending online and offline trainings, organising events, and being an active member of the thriving School of Data community.

Get the details

Our 2015 fellowship programme will run from April-December 2015. We’re asking for 10 days a month of your time – consider it to be a part time role, and your time will be remunerated. To apply, you need to be living in a country classified as lower income, lower-middle income or upper-middle income categories as classified here.

Who are we looking for?

People who fit the following profile:

  • Data savvy: has experience working with data and a passion for teaching data skills.
  • Social change: understands and interested in the role of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and the media in bringing positive change through advocacy, campaigns, and storytelling.
  • Has some facilitation skills and enjoys community-building (both online and offline) – or, eager to learn and develop their communication and presentation skills
  • Eager to learn from and be connected with an international community of data enthusiasts
  • Language: a strong knowledge of English – this is necessary in order to communicate with other fellows, to take part in the English-run online skillshares and the offline Summer Camp

To give you an idea of who we’re looking for, check out the profiles of our 2014 fellows – we welcome people from a diverse range of backgrounds, too, so people with new skillsets and ranges of experience are encouraged to apply.

This year, we’d love to work with people with a particular topical focus, especially those interest in working with extractive industries data, financial data, or aid data.

There are 7 fellowship positions open for the April to December 2015 School of Data training programme.

Geographical focus

We’re looking for people based in low-, lower-middle, and upper-middle income countries as classified by the World Bank, and we have funding for Fellows in the following geographic regions:

  • One fellow from Macedonia
  • One fellow from Central America – focus countries Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua
  • One fellow from South America – focus countries Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador
  • Two fellows based in African countries (ie. two different countries)
  • Two fellows based in Asian countries (ie. two different countries)
What does the fellowship include?

As a School of Data fellow, you’ll be part of our 9-month programme, which includes the following activities:

  • guided and independent online and offline skillshares and trainings, aimed to develop data and leadership skills,
  • individual mentoring and coaching;
  • an appropriate stipend equivalent to a part time role;
  • Participation in the annual School of Data Summer Camp, which will take place in May 2015 – location to be confirmed.
  • Participation in activities within a growing community of School of Data practitioners to ensure continuous exchange of resources, knowledge and best practices;
  • Training and coaching of the fellow in participatory event management, storytelling, public speaking, impact assessment etc;
  • Opportunities for paid work – often training opportunities arise in the countries where the fellows are based.
  • Potential work with one or more local civil society organisations to develop data driven campaigns and research.
What did last year’s fellows have to say?

Check out the Testimonials page to see what the 2014 Fellows said about the programme, or watch our Summer Camp video to meet some of the community.


This year’s fellowships will be supported by the Partnership for Open Development (POD) OD4D, Hivos, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Macedonia. We welcome more donors to contribute to this year’s fellowship programme! If you are a donor and are interested in this, please email us at

Got questions? See more about the Fellowship Programme here and have a looks at this Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page.- or, watch the Ask Us Anything Hangouts that we held in mid-February to take your questions and chat more about the fellowship.

Not sure if you fit the profile? Have a look at our 2013 and 2014 fellows profiles.. Women and other minorities are encouraged to apply.

Convinced? Apply now to become a School of data fellow. The application will be open until March 10th and the programme will start in April 2015.

Library Tech Talk (U of Michigan): In Search Of... A Better Search Experience

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 00:00

Search is the cornerstone of the library website, and the primary goal of our online presence: to help users find resources and information so that they can do their work.

DuraSpace News: REGISTER: COAR-SPARC Conference in Porto, Portugal

planet code4lib - Wed, 2015-02-18 00:00

From Stacie Lemick, Programs and Operations Associate, SPARC

Washington, DC  SPARC is pleased to announce that registration is now open for the upcoming COAR-SPARC Conference, Connecting Research Results, Bridging Communities, Opening Scholarship, to be held April 15th and 16th in Porto, Portugal. 

Jonathan Rochkind: ethical code for software engineering professionals?

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-02-17 17:12

Medical professionals have  professional ethical codes. For instance, the psychologists who (it is argued) helped devised improved torture methods for the U.S. government are accused of violating the ethical code of their profession.

Do software engineers and others who write software have professional ethical duties?

Might one of them be to do one’s best to create secure software (rather than intentionally releasing software with vulnerabilities for the purposes of allowing people in the know to exploit), and responsibly disclosing any security vulnerabilities found in third party software (rather than keeping them close so they can be used them for exploits)?

If so, are the software developers at the NSA (and, more likely, government contractors working for the NSA) guilty of unethical behavior?

Of course, the APA policy didn’t keep the psychologists from doing what they did, and there is some suggestion that the APA even intentionally made sure to leave enough loophole, which they potentially regret.   And there have been similar controversies within Anthropology. There’s no magic bullet to ethical behavior from simply writing rules, but I still think it’s a useful point for inquiry, at least acknowledging that there is such a thing as professional ethics for the profession, and providing official recognition that these discussions are part of the profession.

Are there ethical duties of software engineers and others who create software?  As software becomes more and more socially powerful, is it important to society that this be recognized? Are these discussions happening?  What professional bodies might they take place in? (IEEE? ACM?).  The ACM has a code of ethics, but it’s pretty vague, it seems easy to justify just about any profit-making activity.

Are these discussions happening?   Will the extensive Department of Defense funding of Computer Science (theoretical and applied) in the U.S. make it hard to have these discussions? (When I googled, the discussion that came up of how DoD funding effects computer science research was from 1989 — there may be self-interested reasons people aren’t that interested in talking about this).

Filed under: General


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