Tag Archives: Library Kiosk

Hone your IT, media, and productivity skills with Lynda.com

University of Chicago researchers have access to Lynda.com, a leading provider of online courses covering business, media, and technology.  Researchers can choose from over 4,000 courses, all of which are broken up into short, easy to use videos.  Business courses cover LyndaLinkedin_blackeverything from leadership and marketing to product management, while media courses cover specific software such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe InDesign, as well as general techniques for graphic design, video editing and more.  Technology courses cover a full range of software and skills, including Java, R, SPSS, data analysis and cyber security.  Course levels range from introductory to advanced and instructors are vetted industry experts.

In addition to courses, Lynda.com has created guides using a collection of short videos, articles and checklists, that provide a step by step process for starting a business and becoming a manager.  The Starting a Business guide covers everything from evaluating yourself and your business idea to establishing operations.  Lynda.com’s Weekly Series feature guarantees that content stays fresh.  The most recent video in the Marketing Tips weekly series discusses representing the keyword funnel through SEO.

Questions about how to leverage this powerful tool? Ask us on Twitter, Facebook, or through our reference services.

Mother’s Room, Regenstein B51

Regenstein Room B51, located on the building’s B Level, has been renovated to create an accessible, ADA-compliant Mother’s Room for the exclusive use of nursing mothers currently affiliated with the University and visiting researchers using the Library’s collections. This single-use, private room is available for up to one hour increments.

To request use of the Mother’s Room, please contact the secretary in the Library Administration Office (Regenstein 180) between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. At other times, please see the Circulation Supervisor on duty.

Recordings Collection now in Mansueto

The Recordings Collection, formerly located in Regenstein Room 360, has been relocated to the Joe and Rika Mansueto Library.

The Collection is now accessible all of the hours that Mansueto is open (107½ hours per week during the academic quarter), compared to the 36 hours per week the collection was formerly accessible in Regenstein Room 360.

In addition to providing longer service hours, the new location allows items in the collection to be requested at any time and from any place with an internet connection via the Library Catalog.  Material will be available for pick up within 15 minutes of the request during the open hours of Mansueto Circulation.  See “How do I request items from Mansueto?” for more information.

For users who wish to listen to recordings on site, one of the glass research cubicles in Mansueto has been converted into a listening station equipped with a CD player, turntable, cassette player and headphones. Users may request access to this new listening station at Mansueto Circulation.

For more information about the Recordings Collection, please contact Scott Landvatter, the Bibliographer for Music.

Library Catalog record for a pair of CDs. Click "Request from Mansueto Library" to retrieve.

Library Catalog record for a pair of CDs. Click “Request from Mansueto Library” to begin retrieval process.

Changes at Ex Libris Café

Over the March interim, three new bar-height tables, each 24 feet long, were installed in Ex Libris, the student run coffee shop located in the northeast corner of the 1st floor of Regenstein.   The new tables, with convenient access to 60 duplex power outlets, provide much-needed additional seating for café users.  They replace a number of the round three-person café tables, which have been moved to the A Level, another Regenstein meal zone, adjacent to the new glass wall.

KI Apply café stoolsEx Libris cafe logo are on order and are expected by the close of April; they will replace the temporary stools being used at the bar-height tables.

Another change in the café this quarter is a new beverage on the menu – cold nitrous infused coffee on tap.

Lastly, for those wondering whether there are now fewer sofas in the café, rest assured that the same number of sofas remain; they have just been rearranged.

2016 Robert L. Platzman Memorial Fellowships Awarded

Robert Platzman

Robert Platzman in 1941

The Special Collections Research Center is pleased to announce the recipients of the Robert L. Platzman Memorial Fellowships for 2016.

Established through a bequest of George W. Platzman (1920-2008), Professor in Geophysical Sciences, the research fellowships are named in memory of George’s brother Robert Platzman (1918-1973), Professor of Chemistry and Physics and a member of the Metallurgical Laboratory at the University of Chicago during World War II.

The annual Platzman Fellowships provide funds for visiting researchers whose projects require on-site consultation of University of Chicago Library collections, primarily but not exclusively materials in Special Collections, with priority given to beginning scholars. Additional information on the Platzman Fellowship program is available on the Special Collections web site: http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/scrc/about/platzmanfellowships.html

2016 Robert L. Platzman Fellows

Kate Bellamy
PhD candidate, Centre for Linguistics, Leiden University, Netherlands
Consulting the papers of Paul Friedrich and Norman McQuown
“Rediscovering Lost Voices: Two Approaches to Indigenous Literacy in Purépecha (Mexico)”

Lucie Claire
Maître de conferences, UFR des lettres, Université de Picardie Jules Verne, Amiens, France
Consulting editions of works of Marc-Antoine Muret in the rare book holdings
“The American Destiny of the Humanist Marc-Antoine Muret (1526-1585)”

Azra Dawood
PhD Candidate, History, Theory and Criticism of Architecture and Art, Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Consulting the records of the University of Chicago Department of Buildings and Grounds and the papers of Harold H. Swift, Julius Rosenwald, Robert M. Hutchins, and others
“John D. Rockefeller, Jr. and the Architecture of Protestant Internationalism (1919-1946).”

Raquel Escobar
PhD candidate, History, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Consulting records of the American Indian Chicago Conference in the Native American Educational Service records, and the papers of Robert Redfield, Sol Tax, and others
“Reconcile the Indian, Reconcile the Nation: Indigenismo, the Nation, and Transnational Networks of the Inter-American Indian Institute”

Louis Fletcher
PhD candidate, School of Social & Political Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Scotland
Consulting the records of the Social Science Research Committee and the papers of Quincy Wright, Charles E. Merriam, and Beardsley Ruml
“A Genealogy of Democratic Peace”

Ilnyun Kim
PhD candidate, History, Ohio State University
Consulting the records of the International Association for Cultural Freedom
“The Liberal Persuasion: The Congress for Cultural Freedom and the Intellectual Cold War in the World, 1950-1967”

Paul Putz
PhD candidate, History, Baylor University
Consulting the papers of Amos Alonzo Stagg and related archival collections
“Creating the Christian Athlete in the Twentieth-Century United States”

Aulii Silva
PhD candidate, Educational Foundations, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Consulting the papers of Henry Northrup Castle
“Worth Another Look: A Native Hawaiian Review of the Henry N. Castle Papers”

John Suval
Ph.D. candidate, History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Consulting the papers of Stephen A. Douglas
“Dangerous Ground: Squatters, Statesmen, and the Rupture of American Democracy, 1830-1860”

Unrequired reading at the Library

Miss reading for fun? Having trouble finding unrequired reading in the libraries’ collections? With over 11 million print & electronic books, it can be hard to browse the library collections to find reading for fun. But have no fear, librarians are here! Read on to learn about specific collections at University of Chicago Libraries dedicated to leisure reading and top tips to find your next favorite fun read.

D'Angelo Law LIbrary Book Display

Books on display at the D’Angelo Law Library

Tip #1: Visit D’Angelo Law Library. The D’Angelo law library collects novels, mysteries, science fiction,  humor, science, history, and biography (Supported by the Alison T. Dunham Memorial Fund). Find authors such as Jonathan Franzen, Chuck Palahniuk, Jennifer Weiner, and many more! The collection is easy to locate and recently purchased titles can be found on display on the fourth floor.

Tip #2: Browse the Reg’s Young Adult Fiction. In 2015, College student Maya Handa won an Uncommon Fund grant to buy young adult fiction for the Reg’s collections. You can view some of the purchased book covers on display next to the dissertation office or browse for yourself by visiting the PZ call numbers on the 3rd floor.

Tip #3: Check out the Class of 2000 Books. As its gift to the University, the Class of 2000 has established a book fund for the purchase of popular fiction and media for Regenstein. The gift is intended to provide students with mysteries, science fiction, other contemporary fiction, and media that would not ordinarily be purchased by the Library.

via GIPHY

Tip #4: Search the library catalog. The library has a lot of great books for you to read, but you have to know what you’re looking for. Find new book recommendations by browsing book recommendation engines like:

Selection of Class of 2000 Books

A few books purchased using the Class of 2000 fund. Photo by Rebecca Starkey.

  • Amazon: The online shopping giant pulls purchase histories from users. Usually browsing the “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought…” section brings up great recommendations. It has allowed readers to review books for over 20 years, making the site a massive resource for book recommendations.
  • GoodReads: Described as the ‘Netflix for Books,’ GoodReads has a recommendation engine that uses a reported 20 billion data points to give suggestions tailored to your literary preferences. GoodReads also allows you to create your own virtual library, connect with friends, and create wishlists.
  • WhatShouldIReadNext: Just type in a book or author you enjoyed and see your recommendations flow in. The site’s recommendation inventory is less expensive when compared to Amazon or GoodReads, but the nice thing about this resource is that you can also browse recommendations by subject. Really enjoyed Americanah? See all other books about Nigeria!

Once you find a book that you want to read, just type it into the catalog to find it in the library. If it’s not here, remember that you can also browse search in Big 10 university libraries and Ivy League libraries through UBorrow and BorrowDirect.

Tip #5: As always, if you are having trouble finding a book in the collections, or have any questions, Ask a Librarian!

The business benefits of learning another language

In today’s global economy, it’s no surprise that businesses benefit from the skills of polyglots.  Of course, the most obvious benefit is the ability to transfer information in multiple languages.  Learning a second language also provides a window into the culture of the speakers of the language as well as an empathetic view of the effort many people around the world have made to learn English.   These additional insights facilitate relationship building, a must when trying to do business anywhere in any language.mango

University of Chicago researchers have access to Mango Languages, an online interactive language learning tool for learning vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar and culture all in a single, integrated experience.  It covers more than 70 languages from American Sign Language to Arabic, Vietnamese and Yiddish.  Non-native English speakers can also study English as a second language.  Seventeen different versions are available.  In order to use all of the functions of Mango, users need to create a personal account and log in.

Questions? Ask us on Twitter, Facebook, or through our reference services.

Preserving the Texture of Legal History: The Pleasure and Privilege of Rare Books

On the D’Angelo Law Library’s sixth floor, behind the glass walls and the keycard-entry doors, bathed in air that is always between 60–65°F and 45–60 percent humidity, are the really old books.

The artifacts sit in this climate-controlled silence, brought out for the occasional visitor but more often viewed digitally by students and scholars who might never have cradled a 400-year-old calfskin volume or turned a heavy parchment page printed in calligraphy. There are more than 3,700 items in the Law School’s collection, and more than half are available in digital form—meaning those volumes are both physically rare and more accessible than ever before. It is a modern paradox: as technology brings content closer—and reduces the need for in-person use—does a rare book become more so, or less? Can it be both?

Photos of the Rare Books sections at the University of Chicago's D'Angelo Law Library.

Digitization of rare texts has been an important development—scanned books are accessible to a greater number of researchers and are searchable—but it is impossible to fully replicate the experience of working with an original. The process of converting the documents into searchable text isn’t perfect; abbreviations, for instance, aren’t always translated consistently or accurately. Context can be lost if a full volume isn’t available and one can’t flip back to find a full citation or foundational details. And the experience of holding and reading a physical volume is lost when it appears only on a screen. To visit the two rooms housing the D’Angelo Law Library’s Rare Books Collection—or better, to thumb through a centuries-old volume beside a historian like Alison LaCroix, the Robert Newton Reid Professor of Law, or R.H. Helmholz, the Ruth Wyatt Rosenson Distinguished Service Professor of Law—is to peer into the lives and minds of the long-gone scholars and leaders who created our nation’s governing structure, or interpreted canon law, or commented on the decisions of a 17th-century European court. It is to touch what they touched, to see the law in a slightly different way, and to remember that all of these ideas were created and shaped by people.

It is, simply, to feel the curves and coils of history.

***
One afternoon last fall, LaCroix held some of these curves and coils in her hand—a 225-year-old, first-edition French translation of the United States Constitution and acts of the first U.S. Congress that the D’Angelo acquired about two years ago. The book, Actes passés à un congrès des Etats-Unis de l’Amérique, is believed to be the first French translation of the Bill of Rights and is curious for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that it essentially groups the nation’s supreme law alongside things like the Tariff Act of 1789.

“We don’t usually think of the Constitution as an act of Congress—it’s not just some regular old statute,” LaCroix said. “But there it is.”

Photograph of page of ConstitutionThen there’s the puzzle of the book’s origin, a question made somehow more compelling by the volume’s physical presence. The text was translated by one Monsieur Hubert, who appears to have been a lawyer or judge in the French parliament, or court—but who asked Monsieur Hubert to do it? And what might that decision tell us about the America’s efforts to gain recognition on the world stage, Europe’s view of the fledgling democracy, or early U.S. political divisions? What clues might lurk in the volume’s marginalia, or the ways in which the content is structured? The timing makes it intriguing: the late 1780s brought not just the ratification of the U.S. Constitution but the start of the French Revolution, a 10-year conflict that inspired both enthusiasm and fear among Americans. There was marked division in America—those who were pro-British and those, like Thomas Jefferson, who were pro-French. Had someone in America thought it important to share our law with the French during their time of upheaval, or had someone in France requested it?

“Who was the audience? Who in France said, ‘I want the U.S. Constitution, and I want to know what the U.S. Congress is doing?’” LaCroix said. “As often happens when you pick up a primary source, all these questions arise.”

As she turned the pages, history seemed to swell and take shape: there, in French, was the Judiciary Act of 1789, which would eventually become the first congressional act to be partially invalidated by the U.S. Supreme Court. But when it was translated for this volume, the act was still new and whole: it would be more than a decade before the landmark Marbury v. Madison struck down one of its provisions, affirming the concept of judicial review.

“When we’re talking about these periods in law school, it doesn’t always seem concrete: it is Marbury v. Madison, it is John Adams and George Washington and their theories. They’re in casebooks, so the texture is stripped away,” LaCroix said. “But there is so much literal texture in this volume: just feeling the pages and seeing the print. It’s a mode of human connection with people who created the structures of government institutions and offices.”

She ran her finger down a page, examining the text as she spoke.

“These were things that were created by people,” she continued, “let’s not forget that.”

***

The strength of the D’Angelo’s Rare Books Collection is historical U.S. law; the D’Angelo has nearly all the original primary sources in that category. The library is working to expand the European collection, an important area of growth, D’Angelo Law Library Director Sheri Lewis said. Right now, the library adds at least a few rare materials each year, and acquisitions are often driven by opportunity. Librarians—often Lyonette Louis-Jacques, Foreign and International Law Librarian, and Bill Schwesig, Bibliographer for Common Law—peruse dealer catalogs, participate in rare book auctions, and look for other chances to acquire volumes that meet particular research interests or add valuable dimension to the collection. In the autumn of 2014, for instance, the D’Angelo acquired about 100 rare titles that had been withdrawn from the collection at the Rutgers School of Law-Camden Law Library.

Photograph of a rare bookThe vast majority of the D’Angelo’s rare books are from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, though fourteen percent are from the seventeenth century and four percent are from sixteenth century. There are early volumes of the United States Reports, sixteenth-century canon law written in Latin, and volumes of Consilia, which are collections of opinions written to advise European judges in the sixteenth, seventeenth, and early eighteenth centuries. There are books on Prussian law, materials on witchcraft trials, and volumes of Sir William Blackstone’s eighteenth-century Commentaries on the Laws of England, which are influential treatises that played a role in the development of the American legal system. Some of the books in the D’Angelo’s rare collection are heavy elephant folios; others are just a few inches long, small enough to fit in the palm of a hand. Many of the books are beautiful, featuring ornate, handset type or fore-edge painting, which are designs or pictures painted onto the edges of the pages. Some have elegant, handwritten notes in the margins—the insights of early readers. Some volumes have held up surprisingly well for their age, and others have been rebound or preserved in other ways.

“Our library is fortunate to have these treasures of law and legal history in our collection,” Lewis said. “Our aspiration is to grow; there are still scholars who work with this material, and they work with it in a way that makes the actual artifact desirable.”

After all, not everything has been digitized; books that aren’t available online—especially ones that fit faculty research interests—are of obvious and particular value. The first-edition French translation of the Constitution, for instance, was a title the library knew LaCroix would appreciate. When the library acquired it, the book was in pamphlet form, and they took it to a rare book conservator to have it rebound.

D’Angelo librarians often consult with Helmholz, the rare book collection’s most frequent user. Right now, he’s hoping to help them find a collection of volumes published near the end of the sixteenth century: Tractatus universi iuris, or “The Treatise of All Laws.”

“It was a standard book, and we don’t have a copy, but we should,” he said. “It’s proving a little hard to find one, but it’s the kind of thing I’d like to get.”

A scholar whose expertise includes canon law, Helmholz has his own collection of rare books in his office and at home—though none, he notes, are on the extreme end of rare or valuable. For instance, there’s a 1556 volume covering basic canon law of the Middle Ages that he got a bit of a deal on.

“It’s quite a handsome volume, but look at this,” he said, flipping through the inside, “it was lacking some of the pages. So what the book dealer did is Xerox from another edition and paste these in. It’s a far-from-perfect copy—even the title page is gone, and the binding isn’t in great shape. But it’s useful, and for my purposes, it works. And I was able to buy it for, I don’t remember, maybe $400.”

Students and others who visit Helmholz’s office will sometimes ask about the books, and he usually doesn’t mind pulling a volume or two from the shelf. It’s gratifying, he said, to see the interest.

Shelf of rare books“Pick one out,” he told a visitor one morning last fall, before offering a brief tour of a heavy 1709 volume detailing the duties of ecclesiastical judges. “Did you have any Latin?” he asked the visitor—who hadn’t—before translating some of the text and encouraging her to be less hesitant in turning and touching the pages.

“They’re not fragile—you can see this is done in rag paper,” he said. “These things will still be around when most of the books we have from the 1900s are dust.”

This is another part of the draw: many old books are durable, a tribute to the craftsmanship of their time. They’re also practical in ways that digital versions are not. In any book, for instance, one can stumble upon related content or deliberately flip back a few pages for context. A rare book might represent the only opportunity to do that within a given niche.

“If you pull up a statute online and you’re in a small subset—small Roman numeral iv, part 3—you don’t know where you are,” LaCroix said. “As an intellectual matter, you need to be able to work back up the tree and see what’s next to it.”

Optical Character Recognition, the technology that converts the books to searchable documents, can fall short, particularly in dealing with abbreviations in Latin or other foreign languages.

“By experience, you can work out what these abbreviations mean, but you can’t really search for them,” Helmholz said. “Some of the sources cited in rare books become quite unrecognizable in scanned versions. Normally, in rare books, scanned versions are not adequate substitutes for the original.”

As these volumes continue to become both older and more accessible, Helmholz wonders if the market might offer an advantage to those who are still after the physical experience of the old book.

“My hope is that prices [of rare books] will decline markedly so we can buy more. I haven’t seen evidence of that yet, but it is my hope,” he said. “If you can get what you need in digitized form, why would you pay a small fortune for a book—except for the pleasure or privilege of having a rare book and being able to look at it?”

A University of Chicago Law School news release

New online resource: Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical Texts

Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical TextsThe researchers at the University of Chicago now have online access to the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical Texts through Brill. The database includes high resolution images of the biblical texts discovered in the Judean desert along with a side-by-side comparison of Hebrew transcription, English translation and the text of the Leningrad Codex. Until now, this content was only accessible electronically through the CD-ROM version published in 1999. Through the online database, researchers are able to search across the entire content, link between texts and download images of scrolls either on or off-campus. Included at this time is the Revised List of Texts from the Judean Desert (2010) that includes non-biblical texts, though these are currently not available to read online. Since the database is published by Brill, researchers can simultaneously access related databases published by Brill, such as The Context of Scripture online or the Coptic Gnostic Library online. Any questions can be directed to Anne K. Knafl, Bibliographer for Religion and Philosophy.

The display of a fragment from Genesis 19:27-28 from the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Online.

The display of a fragment from Genesis 19:27-28 from the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Online.

 

Library offers guides for data management and author identifiers

Data Management

The Library has created a guide to help researchers with Data Management issues such as how to write a Data Management Plan (DMP) and Data Repository and Storage Options available.

Why manage your data?

Many funding agencies such as the NSF now require that researchers write a data management plan in order to receive funding. Preserving your data also ensures it will be available in the long term. In addition documenting and managing your data saves you time because it will be easier to use in an organized and understandable form. Putting your data in a repository and letting the repository handle any requests about it also saves you time that you can focus on your own research.

Author Identifiers

We also offer a guide to creating and using Author identifiers, including ORCID IDs. Creating an ORCID ID gives you a persistent, unique numeric identifier that links together all of your research work, including any name changes over the course of your career. It distinguishes you from others with the same name and ensures that your work is attributed to you. It also makes it easy for others to locate all of your research, since it is all linked by an identifier.