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8 July 2012
by andrew
Comments Off on learning to cursive

learning to cursive

Judith Thurman’s recent post at the New Yorker blog on cursive handwriting and the Declaration of Independence reminded me of something I wrote some time ago about my own experiences learning to write and read cursive. Reading it over now, I … Continue reading

2 July 2012
by andrew
Comments Off on “the library is itself their laboratory and museum”

“the library is itself their laboratory and museum”

From William Coolidge Lane, “The treatment of books according to the amount of their use” (1903): (emphasis in the original; I have added paragraph breaks for readability) The question then resolves itself into this: Can a scholar accomplish his work … Continue reading

23 February 2012
by andrew
Comments Off on different kinds of stacks

different kinds of stacks

I’m taking a course in collection development/management and I’ve come to realize that I must be somewhat of an outlier as a library user. This is probably less true of the number of books I check out than of the … Continue reading

4 October 2011
by andrew
2 Comments

access to subjects

[Note: I started writing this as a comment on this post on “Bookworm and Library Search” over at Benjamin Schmidt’s Sapping Attention, but Blogger wouldn’t let me post it, probably for length reasons. Since my comment turned out to be mostly a … Continue reading

10 April 2010
by andrew
2 Comments

a system of signs

Sometimes, in the library, information seeks you. Books on the hold shelf come wrapped in sheets of paper fastened with rubber bands. This is next to the self-checkout machine. Self-checkout has its perils. So do certain kinds of micro- readers. … Continue reading

9 April 2010
by andrew
Comments Off on pointed and shot

pointed and shot

I finally remembered to bring “my” camera to the library today. Keep in mind that the windows are  dirty, I’ve actually borrowed this camera and barely used it before, I don’t know anything about how to set lighting/zoom/etc properly though … Continue reading

3 April 2010
by andrew
Comments Off on seeing and believing

seeing and believing

Alana Newhouse’s article about photographer Roman Vishniac, his photographs, the stories he told with and about those photographs, and the evidence that challenges those stories, is really kind of fantastic. Never heard of Vishniac? (I hadn’t.) Not sure you’re interested? … Continue reading

28 March 2010
by andrew
Comments Off on you’d probably need more than old newspapers for that kind of story, though

you’d probably need more than old newspapers for that kind of story, though

The excitement of research.

24 March 2010
by andrew
Comments Off on recall numbers

recall numbers

I still remember the old card catalog at the main university library. I don’t think I ever used it. My mom worked in the cataloging department and sometimes I’d walk by the rows of drawers on my way to the … Continue reading

29 January 2010
by andrew
5 Comments

and I thought I’d spent a lot of my life around libraries

Apparently, many New York Public Library branches used to have live-in superintendents, some of whose families also lived in the library buildings with them. I wonder how many other non-residential buildings had this kind of set-up – and if other … Continue reading