All news

Open-score intro to the Beethoven quartets – March 6

Posted February 21st, 2014 by Christie Moore

jupiter_quartet_smOpen-Score Introduction to the Beethoven Quartets: The Jupiter Quartet,  hosted by Teresa Neff. Quartet in G Major, Op. 18, No. 2; Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 74 “Harp”; Quartet in E minor, Op. 59, No. 2. The Jupiter Quartet will present each of the works on their concert program of March 7 and play excerpts, with scores and facsimiles available for use by the audience.

Date: Thursday, March 6, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 6:30 pm
Q and A and reception follows
Free and open to the public

Sponsored by MIT Music and Theater Arts.

Discussion: Scientific imaging for artwork & other cultural heritage materials

Posted February 20th, 2014 by Heather Denny

Discussion: Thursday, February 27, 2014, 11:00 am, 14N-132 (DIRC)


Detail: Two modes of Reflectance Transformation Imaging. The bottom view shows a Japanese woodcut in “Normal” mode. The top view shows the “Specular Enhancement” mode, which removes color virtually to reveal the subtle surface impressions made in the paper by the artist. © Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Konishi Hirosada, artist, Osaka Actor Mimasu Daigoro IV , color woodcut with embossing and metallic pigment, c. 1851-59.

New scientific imaging tools offer the capability to see distinctive details on a 16th century rare book cover, a manuscript, or a work of art, that can’t be seen with the naked eye. Please join the MIT Libraries’ Curation and Preservation Services Department for a fascinating look at how this technology can help us to learn more about our cultural heritage materials, and how to best preserve them.

Carla Schroer, of the non-profit Cultural Heritage Imaging, will discuss the new empirical capture and analysis tools Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI), Algorithmic Rendering (AR), and image-based Structure from Motion (SFM) generation of textured 3D geometry. These techniques will be explored in the context of the emerging science of “Computational Photography.” Computational Photography extracts and synthesizes information from image sequences to create a new type of image containing information not found in any single image in the sequence. This technology is in use in many areas from major art museums to remote archaeological sites to fields in the natural sciences.

The event is free and open to the public, no registration required.

Be an OECD Student Ambassador: and have a chance to go to Paris!

Posted February 19th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

OECD logo

Interested in the world economy or international relations?  Then become an OECD Student Ambassador!  Deadline: March 30th.

Student Ambassadors are undergraduates who engage with the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) and plan on-campus activities to raise awareness of the Organization and its work. Based on their performance, two outstanding Student Ambassadors will be selected to attend the OECD Forum in Paris in May 2015.

All Student Ambassadors attend an initial training in Washington, DC, May 31-June 1, 2014, and will receive a certificate of participation and a letter of recommendation.  Expenses for trips plus a budget related to promotional activities on campus will be paid by the OECD.

For more information see: the OECD Student Ambassador Program 2014-2015 Guidelines

Deadline for applications: March 30, 2014

Download the OECD Student Ambassador Program 2014-2015 Guidelines and Application

Email application materials to Elodie Turchi at For further questions, contact Ms. Turchi or Katherine McNeill, Economics Librarian, at

Paper engineering page turns for music scores – March 3rd

Posted February 14th, 2014 by Christie Moore

Paper Engineering Page Turns for  Music Scores

paper_eng_1_tnCome spend an hour with composer and vocalist Erin Gee and MIT Libraries Conservator Jana Dambrogio as they demonstrate a practical and low-tech way to transform the pages of your performing music scores into a continuous sheet of paper that is easy to handle during performances.

Erin will perform the voice part from her piece for voice and ensemble, Mouthpiece X, to show how the enhanced score functions. Jana will demonstrate how you can do this with your own music.

Date: Monday, March 3, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 5-6 pm
Reception follows
Free and open to the public

Composer Charles Shadle – Wednesday, March 5

Posted February 14th, 2014 by Christie Moore

Composer forum series: Charles Shadle

CharlesShadle_tn Western Saddlebag: Cowboy Songs and the Craft of Composition.
Charles Shadle, MIT Senior Lecturer in Music and Theater Arts.
The talk will focus on Western Saddlebag, a newly composed suite of arrangements of traditional cowboy melodies for piano.

Date: Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 5-6 pm
Reception follows
Free and open to the public

Sponsored by MIT Music and Theater Arts.

OA research in the news: MIT names new provost and chancellor

Posted February 12th, 2014 by Katharine Dunn
Martin Schmidt and Cynthia Barnhart Photos: Dominick Reuter

Martin Schmidt and Cynthia Barnhart
Photos: Dominick Reuter

Two MIT faculty members have been named provost and chancellor, the Institute’s two most senior academic posts. Martin Schmidt, the new provost, is an electrical engineering professor and had been associate provost since 2008. The provost is the senior academic and budget officer on campus. Cynthia Barnhart, a professor in civil and environmental engineering, has been associate dean of the School of Engineering since 2007. In Barnhart’s job as chancellor she’s responsible for undergraduate and graduate education and student life.

Explore Professor Schmidt’s research and Professor Barnhart’s research in the Open Access Articles collection in DSpace@MIT, where it is openly accessible to the world.

Since the MIT faculty established their Open Access Policy in March 2009 they have made thousands of research papers freely available to the world via DSpace@MIT. To highlight that research, we’re offering a series of blog posts that link news stories about scholars’ work to their open access papers in DSpace.

Presidents’ Day hours: Monday, February 17

Posted February 12th, 2014 by Grace Mlady

mount-225587_640On Monday, February 17, 2014, the following libraries will open at noon (12pm):

All other library locations will be closed. Libraries resume spring term hours on Tuesday, February 18.

Have questions? Ask Us!

Learn quantitative methods at ICPSR this summer–registration opens today!

Posted February 10th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

Need to expand your skills in statistical methods and quantitative analysis? Attend the ICPSR Summer Program! Each year, ICPSR provides a comprehensive, integrated program of studies in research design, statistics, data analysis, and social science methodology. Registration is now open for the 2014 session.  Note: MIT attendees can register at a discount and scholarships are available.

For a listing of course offerings and application information, see the ICPSR Summer Program web site.  Courses this year include:

Note that while most courses are held at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, some are held in nearby Amherst, MA or New York, NY.


And don’t forget ICPSR as a source of quantitative data on a range of topics: from markets, election statistics, health, education, international relations, social attitudes and behavior, and more!  Recently added datasets include:

In other news, attend an upcoming Webinar: Resources for Health Research from ICPSR.

For further information, contact Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian, at

Monuments Man and Art Conservator George Stout

Posted February 7th, 2014 by Jana Dambrogio

George Leslie Stout was one of the United States of America’s first art conservators. Stout worked in Cambridge, Massachusetts as the head of the first Conservation Department in the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University before being called into active military duty in 1943. Soon after, he was recruited to serve on the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives section (MFAA) also known as the Monuments Men. Stout later lead the Monuments team of men and women dedicated to safeguarding cultural property in war areas during and after World War II. After the war, he returned to Massachusetts and was the director of the Worcester Art Museum and later the Isabella Stewart Gardner Art Museum. He was a founding member of the International Institute of Conservation.

George Stout was one of the first names I learned when I became interested in the field of art conservation in 1989. Rutherford Gettens and George Stout’s Painting Materials: A Short Encyclopedia and Stout’s The Care of Pictures were the first two books I purchased, read cover to cover, and still reference today. The Foundation for the American Institute of Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works’ (FAIC)  “George Stout Memorial Fund” afforded many students, including me, the opportunity to attend our first annual AIC meetings to become active members of this extraordinary field that George Stout and many other Monuments men and women helped to create.

Today, The Monuments Men movie opens. It is based on this true story about a local hero (played by co-screen-writer and producer, director, and star George Clooney) who worked with several hundred others to save countless works of art we may still have the pleasure of enjoying. Thanks George!

Libraries release new guide to independent book publishing

Posted February 6th, 2014 by Katharine Dunn

Independent (or self) publishing has exploded in the last few years: The number of independently published titles grew by 422% between 2007 and 2012. A large part of that growth is because in some ways it’s quite easy to publish a compilation of lecture notes, monograph, book of essays, textbook, or novel—there are now dozens of companies that can help authors sell to a potentially large audience or simply print a copy of their book. But which company, if any, is right for a given project?

The MIT Libraries’ Office of Scholarly Publishing, Copyright, and Licensing has created a guide to independent publishing as a resource for authors navigating the services and companies out there. We released the guide last month during the IAP session “An Introduction to Independent Publishing” cosponsored by Urban Studies & Planning Professor Anne Whiston Spirn. Spirn, who independently published her latest book, The Eye is a Door, led the well-attended session and shared her own experience and advice. We hope to run it again next year.

The guide gives an overview of what independent publishing is and why you might decide to do it, and suggests questions to ask before choosing a company or service, e.g., do you want to edit or design your book or pay someone to do this work? Do you hope to make money from sales? Do you want to publish an e-book, print book, or both? The guide also highlights some of today’s most popular publishing companies and the services they offer.


Enhanced Mendeley Access for MIT Users

Posted February 4th, 2014 by Helen Bailey

Mendeley Institutional EditionGreat News! The MIT Libraries has purchased Mendeley Institutional Edition for all MIT Users.

What is Mendeley?

Mendeley is a tool for managing, annotating and sharing PDFs.  It can also be used to create citations and bibliographies in Microsoft Word, Open Office and LaTeX.

What is Mendeley Institutional Edition (MIE)?

MIE gives MIT users enhanced access to Mendeley.  If you join the MIT group you will get 5 GB of personal space in Mendeley (vs. 2 GB with a free account) and 20 GB of shared space (vs. 100 MB for free). You will also be able to create an unlimited number of shared groups with up to 25 members.

How can you get access to our MIE subscription?

To get access to our MIE subscription you need to join the MIT group. To do this go to:

On that page click the “Join this Group” link. You’ll be prompted for your MIT email address and a link will be sent there for joining the group. There you can create a new account or connect your existing account to the group.

Note: You must have an active MIT email address to sign up. If you already have a Mendeley account using a non-MIT email address you’ll be able to move that account to the MIT group using the link sent to your MIT address. Instead of creating a new account, click the link that says “Already have an Account?” and sign in with your existing account information.  You should then be able to validate your account as being eligible for the MIT group.

Want to Learn more about Mendeley?

See our Mendeley at MIT research guide (which links to our Mendeley Basics video).

Questions?  Email

A Visit from the Smithsonian Institution’s Director of Research and Scientific Data Management

Posted February 3rd, 2014 by Helen Bailey

Thorny Staples presents on the Smithsonian's SIdora repository

Last week the Curation and Preservation Services department of MIT Libraries had the pleasure of hosting Thornton “Thorny” Staples from the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Research Information Services. Although he claims to be a curmudgeon, Thorny is actually a very friendly digital library pioneer with experience creating innovative solutions for a wide variety of digital collections challenges.

On this visit, he gave library staff an overview of the Smithsonian Institution’s SIdora research data management tool. This tool is an interactive system to help the Smithsonian’s many researchers capture and manage their data along with its context. The data is managed in a trusted repository where it can be shared and re-used by other scholars, and ultimately archived by the Smithsonian’s curators. The project is currently in development, but Thorny gave a demonstration of the tool’s pilot instance and it was already easy to see how much great functionality it will have. We look forward to seeing the tool and its output as development progresses.

Many thanks to Thorny for visiting us here in Cambridge and giving us a behind-the-scenes look at the SIdora reposoitory!

New Archnet website for Islamic art and architecture

Posted February 3rd, 2014 by Heather Denny

Umm al-Sultan Sha’ban Mosque & Madrasa Restoration
Cairo, Egypt (Aga Khan Historic Cities Programme)

After ten years as the premier online resource for the study of material and visual culture in Islamic societies, Archnet has been reimagined and restructured. The new Archnet – a collaboration between the Aga Khan Trust for Culture and the Aga Khan Documentation Center at MIT Libraries – is a portal to rich and unique scholarly resources featuring thousands of sites, publications, and images. It is focused on architecture, urbanism, environmental and landscape design, visual culture, and conservation issues related to the Muslim world.

To learn more, visit the Archnet site.

For more information, please contact us at




Binders’ Tickets in the Peterson Telegraphy Collection

Posted January 30th, 2014 by Jana Dambrogio

Binders’ tickets are one type of signed binding and are rare finds. They would have been placed in the book by the binder for a little “PR”. Here are the only two found in the books in the newly donated and catalogued Peterson Telegraphy Collection.

photo 2photo 2 copy

Leighton Son and Hodge.

photo 5


Binder’s Ticket #2

photo 5 copyphoto 4 copy

Wyman and Sons. Publisher binding. London. 1880s.

photo 2 copy 2

Wyman and Sons advertised themselves as printers, engravers, lithographers, bookbinders, and stationers. They made the books from scratch, literally, from the printing of the text pages to the binding of the books. They were located at 74, 75 and later 81 Great Queen Street, Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London, W.C. Check out their many advertisements in The Academy and Literature. The one in volume 12, August 25, 1877, p. 205 is informative. See Google free eBooks.


Shown above (left to right) are Marianna Brotherton and Leslie To, who have just completed an internship in our lab. For the past few months, Marianna and Leslie have been helping to process and conserve the Peterson Telegraphy Collection–a total of 42 boxes of books, pamphlets, photos, and artifacts. Stay tuned for a “farewell guest blog post” from Marianna and Leslie about their favorites treasures from the Peterson Telegraphy Collection.

New and improved services you’ll <3

Posted January 30th, 2014 by Heather Denny

Heart made from book pagesWelcome back! While you were on winter break, the Libraries were working on some improvements we think you’ll like (possibly even love).

  • Extended borrowing periods Yes, you can keep books out longer! You asked, and we doubled the amount of time you can borrow library materials. 60 days for most MIT items, with up to 5 renewals.

If you like these services, let us know! Connect with us on Twitter or Facebook.

Composer Forum presents Either/Or – Thursday, Feb.13

Posted January 29th, 2014 by Christie Moore

The Composer Forum series presents Either/Or:


Contemporary music ensemble Either/Or will perform in the Lewis Music Library:

Date: Thursday, February 13, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 5-6 pm
Reception to follow
Free and open to the public

The performance will feature selections of music by Alvin Lucier to be performed in concert at the MIT Chapel on 2/15/14. Sponsored by MIT Music and Theater Arts.

Ask Us! – Chat is Back

Posted January 29th, 2014 by Mark Szarko

Ask Us LogoYou asked us to bring it back, and we were happy to oblige! Starting Monday, February 3, if you have a question, you can ask us via chat. For the spring term, the service will be staffed as a beta from 12-5, Monday through Friday. To ask a question, just type your Kerberos ID in the chat box on the Ask Us! page. Of course, you’re still welcome to ask questions in person, over the phone, or via e-mail. We just figured sometimes it’s easier to get a real-time answer on your computer, tablet, or mobile device.

Got feedback on the new service? Tell us! We still consider it a beta, so your input will help us to make it better. Interested in what else might be new in the Libraries? Check out the list on our betas page!

Barker Library closed on Friday, Jan. 31

Posted January 28th, 2014 by Jeremiah Graves

Ann WolpertThe Barker Engineering Library will be closed all day on Friday, January 31.

The closure is to facilitate the memorial service and reception for Ann J. Wolpert, Director of the MIT Libraries from 1996-2013.

Access to the Barker 24/7 study space is expected to resume at 9:00pm and the library will be open for regular business hours on Saturday.

All other MIT Libraries locations will remain open for regular business hours and the 24/7 study spaces in Dewey and Hayden will be available after closing.

We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

Spend more time with your library books

Posted January 28th, 2014 by Melissa Feiden

girl reading book in libraryYou asked and we listened!  With the start of spring term, we’re doubling the loan period for most MIT Libraries’ materials.  Now you’ll get a 60-day loan for items like books, graphic novels and MIT theses.  But wait, there’s more!   We’re also increasing the number of times you can renew your loans. MIT faculty, students and staff can now renew loans up to 5 times (unless they’ve been requested by someone else).  The longer loan periods plus increased renewals can add up to a loan of 360 days–nearly one year– for MIT faculty, students, and staff!

As always, you can visit Your Account to view loans and renew eligible items.  However, a gentle reminder: If you’re finished with your library materials before your loan ends, please return items to any MIT Libraries location, including the book drop in the Stata Center Student Street.

Stay tuned in the coming months for additional changes that will make MIT Libraries’ materials more accessible and make your loans easier to manage.   For more information about current library policies, check out our Circulation FAQ.

Want to let us know your thoughts about improving library services?  Tell Us!

Libraries’ spring term hours begin Monday, January 27

Posted January 22nd, 2014 by Grace Mlady

The MIT Libraries’ spring hours begin this Monday, January 27, 2014.

Barker and Dewey Black-eyed Susans with Blue Sky
Monday-Thursday: 8:30am-11pm
Friday: 8:30am-6pm
Saturday: 11am-7pm
Sunday: 11am-11pm

Hayden (Humanities & Science) and Rotch
Monday-Thursday: 8:30am-12am
Friday: 8:30am-8pm
Saturday: 11am-7pm
Sunday: 11am-12am

Lewis Music
Monday-Thursday: 9am-9pm
Friday: 9am-6pm
Saturday: 1pm-6pm
Sunday: 2pm-9pm

These hours will remain in effect through Friday, May 23, 2014. For a complete list of library locations and hours, visit our hours page.

Have questions? Ask Us!