Art + Architecture + Planning

Study Sanctuary—Hayden’s Lipchitz Courtyard

Posted June 27th, 2014 by Heather Denny

The Lipchitz Courtyard within Building 14 (adjacent to Hayden Library) is a hidden gem—a quiet, leafy retreat where you can find a sunny or shady spot to pull up a chair and read a book, or enjoy artwork from MIT’s Public Art Collection.

The courtyard contains three sculptures by 20th century Cubist artist Jacques LipchitzPhotographer Yulla Lipchitz donated the monumental bronze sculptures by her late husband in memory of the late MIT President Jerome B. Wiesner, founder of the Council for the Arts at MIT. 

The garden is also featured on the list of MIT’s pocket gardens, It contains paper birch trees, azalea, hydrangea, rhododendron, and flowering perennials. Stop by to see what’s in bloom, and enjoy this special oasis!

Llipchitzcourtyard_blog

New! Access to the complete New Yorker

Posted May 30th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

New Yorker cover image        

The current issue and all past issues of The New Yorker—going all the way back to very first in 1925—are now available to the MIT community through our subscription to The New Yorker Digital Archive.

You can read the magazine in its full-color glory anywhere you have a browser and an internet connection (try it on your iPad).  So if you’re traveling light this summer and have a hankering for “The Talk of the Town,” those sometimes uproarious, sometimes inscrutable cartoons, and a little Eustace Tilley, check out The New Yorker Digital Archive.

Share your research data with openICPSR—free for a limited time!

Posted May 12th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

openICPSR logo

Need to share research data you have collected in the social or behavioral sciences?  Have a funding agency that requires you to make your data publicly available?  Share your data through openICPSR!

A service of the ICPSR data archive, openICPSR is a research data sharing service for the social and behavioral sciences which provides:

  • Distribution through an established network of over 740 research institutions with powerful search tools and search engine indexing, enabling your data to be discovered and cited
  • Reliability of a trusted, sustainable organization with over 50 years’ experience storing research data
  • Review by professional data curators
  • The ability to accept and disseminate sensitive or restricted-use data

In order to make your data publicly available to others, openICPSR charges a deposit fee (different levels of service are available).  Normally this cost would be written into a grant proposal when planning your data management.  But if you have data right now to share, for a limited time through the end of the calendar year, you can self-deposit your data in openICPSR with no fee!

For more information:

  • For assistance in preparing your data for deposit in ICPSR for free this year, contact data-management@mit.edu.
  • For more information on all your options for depositing data with ICPSR, including professional data curation, contact deposit@icpsr.umich.edu.
  • Working on other issues related to data management or sharing?  Looking for a way to share data from other disciplines?  We can help!  Find out more about the Libraries’ data management services.

Cite your data sources!

Posted April 23rd, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

citation needed sign    data

You’re familiar with the importance of citing the literature that you use in your paper.  But did you know that it’s equally important to cite the sources of the data that you use?

Authors don’t always rigorously cite their data sources—have you ever had a hard time finding the data underlying a publication?—but citing data is equally important in order to:

  • Give the data producer appropriate credit
  • Enable readers of your work to access the data, for their own use and to replicate your results
  • Fulfill publisher requirements

Need guidance and examples?  See the Libraries guide to citing data.  For help in citing data—or in identifying sources of data behind publications—contact Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian, mcneillh@mit.edu.

Want to know more about improved standards and practices in the field for data citation?  See:

Image credits: futureatlas.com [CC-BY-2.0], infocux Technologies [CC-BY-NC-2.0]

Discovering the Libraries: Enriching and simplifying research

Posted April 23rd, 2014 by Pritee Tembhekar
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Priya Kalluri, ’16, doing research on several generations of Frankenstein adaptations, using MIT Libraries’ resources.

By MIT Libraries’ student blogger, Pri Tembhekar

Hello everyone! It is research season! Well at least many of us have design projects, theses, or final reports that require significant research. This week I’ll be highlighting some of the Libraries’ resources for research. You probably already know about finding print resources, such as books owned by the MIT Libraries. While this is a good first step, there are many additional sources of information that can add depth and breadth to your findings.

Subject matter experts are part of the Libraries’ staff and have specialized knowledge about subjects ranging from accounting to women’s and gender studies. These experts can provide research consultations for courses, theses, and other in-depth research. These consultations can be very valuable if you come prepared, and with a project that isn’t due in the next two hours. In case you are facing an impending deadline, these subject matter experts have kindly put together subject matter guides. For an example of how these can be used, take the one on energy. The experts have provided a list of easily accessible databases and journals along with short descriptions of their contents. This enables students to produce higher quality research than Google alone can facilitate. The guides are also a direct way to utilize MIT-only resources without much research into which resources are available and relevant. In short, some of the leg work has been done for you! For a particularly fun research guide, check out the one on designing and making stuff.

Along the same lines as the research guides, the Libraries provide class guides. Certain classes require substantial outside material and/or research from students. The professors can work with librarians to put together class guides especially usefully for that class. If your research is for a class, it is worth checking if there is a class guide for it. In my case, the guide for 10.27 (Energy Projects Lab) along with the Energy guide mentioned above and the Chemical Engineering guide were the foundation for preparing a meaty introduction to my final report in 10.27.

Finally, one of the simplest resources is a class textbook. The Libraries provide access to select textbooks online. I never thought to search for textbooks in the library until a friend mentioned last year that he wasn’t buying the textbook because he could access it through the Libraries. This is also useful if you find that you need a textbook for a class you aren’t taking or would like to peruse the textbook for a class you might take. Never hurts to look before you buy!

Learn more about Mendeley–with pizza!

Posted April 17th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

Mendeley logo

Meet Mendeley Representatives–Refreshments served!

When: Friday April 25th 3:30-5pm

Where: 14N-132

Come eat pizza and learn more about Mendeley, a tool that helps you manage and share pdfs and easily generate citations and bibliographies when writing.  Representatives from Mendeley,  MIT Mendeley Advisors and library staff will be on hand to meet you, answer your questions and get feedback on this great tool.

RSVP for the event.

Enhanced Mendeley Access for MIT Users

The MIT Libraries has purchased Mendeley Institutional Edition for the MIT community.  This gives MIT users more personal and shared space than what is available with a free Mendeley account.  To find out more see our Mendeley page.

Questions? Email personal-content@mit.edu

New journal on urbanism & an Aga Khan AKPIA symposium, 4/11-12

Posted April 8th, 2014 by Patsy Baudoin

nullThe MIT Libraries, through the Aga Khan Documentation Center, now receives Portal 9, a journal of stories and critical writing about urbanism and the city. Two issues, in both English and Arabic, are published each year, each focused on a unique topic and addressing “the need for a conscientious debate about architecture, planning, culture, and society in urban contexts across the Middle East and the rest of the world.” Portal 9 can be found in Rotch Library’s Limited Access collection, beginning with issue #1 (Autumn 2012).

Readers concerned with issues of urbanism and the city might also be interested in the Aga Khan Program at MIT’s upcoming symposium, “The Orangi Pilot Project & the Legacy of Architect Perween Rehman,” taking place this Friday and Saturday (April 11 & 12) at MIT. The program includes a keynote address by architect Arif Hasan, and papers on topics in the areas of Land & Housing; Planning, Politics & Conflict; Community-based Planning & Professional Choices; Gender, Development & Finance; and Documentation, Knowledge & Evaluation. Sharon Smith, the Libraries’ Aga Khan Documentation Center Program Head, will be speaking at the symposium. More information can be found on the event’s website.

Learn About Socio-economic Data at the ACS Data Users Conference!

Posted March 20th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

ACS logo

Use data from the American Community Survey (ACS), which measures social and economic trends in the U.S.?  Learn how to optimize your work by attending the inaugural ACS Data Users Conference!

Held May 29-30, 2014 in Washington, D.C., the program includes presentations by ACS data users, top Census Bureau staff, and a lunch presentation by John H. Thompson, director of the U.S. Census Bureau.

Space is limited, register now!

Can’t attend the conference but want to be part of the community?  Join the ACS Data Users Group.

Want to learn more about the ACS or other population data from the Census Bureau?  Check out the Libraries’ guide to Census and Demographic Data.

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)

CulturalHeritageImage

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 washington.contact@oecd.org. For further questions, contact Ms. Turchi or Katherine McNeill, Economics Librarian, at mcneillh@mit.edu.

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.

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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 mcneillh@mit.edu.

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!

New Archnet website for Islamic art and architecture

Posted February 3rd, 2014 by Heather Denny
AgaKhanHistoricImage

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 archnet@mit.edu

Archnet

 

 

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.

New guides to Social Science Data Services and Census and demographic data

Posted January 27th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

CensusLogo-white       govslider_hdwk_acs_video      ICPSR logo

Looking for data for a research project?  Need to do quantitative analysis of social science topics?  Interested in understanding the human/social aspect of an engineering question?  Look no further than our new and improved guides to:

1. Social Science Data Services: http://libguides.mit.edu/ssds

Find:

  • Data on subjects across the social sciences, including economics, health, labor, political science, public opinion, and more
  • Micro-level data from data archives and repositories such as ICPSR and the Harvard Dataverse Network
  • Data on countries around the world
  • Guidance on how to use and cite data
  • And more…

2. Census and demographic data: http://libguides.mit.edu/census

Find:

  • Demographic and economic data from the U.S. Census Bureau and other sources
  • International census and demographic data about countries worldwide
  • Background and methodology information for understanding Census Bureau Surveys

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Have questions?  Need further help in finding data for a research project?  Contact Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian, at mcneillh@mit.edu.  For help in using data in a GIS, contact GIS Services.

Bound by Hand–Bookbindings created in the Libraries’ Conservation Lab

Posted January 7th, 2014 by Jana Dambrogio

Today is the first day of two Individual Activity Program (IAP) classes the conservation lab is offering. Participants are learning how to transform paper, cloth, board, thread, and glue into two types of blank books–pamphlet and flat back case bindings. Fabricating these foundational book structures reminds us here in the conservation lab why we love books, why we love to make them, and why we are dedicated to preserve them for access-old and new.

Pamphlet bindings made by hand with thread and paper.

A participant is creating the cover for the flat back case binding. Case bindings are made by creating the text block and cover separately; they are attached to each other to create a book.

Instructors for the class: Conservation Assistant Ayako Letizia and Preservation Associate Kate Beattie from the Wunsch Conservation Laboratory, Curation and Preservation Services.

Webinar: Measure change over time with the American Community Survey

Posted December 6th, 2013 by Katherine McNeill

acs

Want to research change over time in social and economic trends for states and local areas across the U.S.?  Use the American Community Survey!

American Community Survey data are released in annual or multiyear estimates (depending upon geographic area) and measure citizens’ experiences in a wide range of social and economic issues.  However, assessing trends over time can be challenging when working with ACS multiyear estimates, so get tips in an upcoming Census webinar: Using the ACS to Measure Trends Over Time.

In this webinar, demographers, planners, and researchers will provide guidance for measuring trends with ACS data.

WHEN: Friday, December 13, 2013, 1–2 p.m. (EST)

Space is limited. Register.

Use data in your research and win a prize! Gain experience in data analysis via an internship!

Posted December 3rd, 2013 by Katherine McNeill

ICPSR logo

ICPSR Research Paper Competition

Using data from the ICPSR (Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research) data archive for one of your classes?  Submit your paper to the ICPSR Research Paper Competition and get a chance to win a $1,000 cash prize!

ICPSR sponsors the competition to highlight the best research papers using quantitative data from the ICPSR archive.  Special prizes are given for using data in their minority, fertility, or HIV data collections.  Note: Some competitions are limited to undergraduate or master’s students.

Deadline for submission: January 31, 2014.

For details on the competition and for help finding data in the ICPSR archive, see ICPSR’s page on the competition or contact Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian, at mcneillh@mit.edu.

ICPSR Summer Undergraduate Internship Program

ICPSR now is accepting applications for its 2014 summer internship program for undergraduates, an NSF-funded program.

  • Explore a research question from start to finish — including literature searches, data analyses, and creation of a conference-ready poster on your research findings
  • Work in small groups and with faculty mentors
  • Gain experience using statistical programs such as Stata, SAS, and SPSS
  • Stipend given

For an example, see a video of a past ICPSR intern presenting on his research project.

Applications are now being taken through an on-line application form. Two letters of recommendation are required, and can also be sent over the Web.

Deadline for application: January 31, 2014.

For more information, see ICPSR’s page on the program or contact Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian, at mcneillh@mit.edu

Get help with statistical software packages, statistics, and research technology

Posted December 2nd, 2013 by Katherine McNeill

Rlogo       stata        SAS_logo

Do you use statistical software packages, such as R, Stata, SAS, or SPSS?  Want to be more effective with statistical analysis, research technology, or social science research methods? No need to struggle with these issues on your own!

MIT has two new resources that can help:

1. Guide to Statistical Software

  • Learn how to access statistical software (e.g., R, Stata, SAS) at MIT
  • Find resources for learning and using these software packages

2. Research Technology Consulting

This service is available to help you individually with:

  • Learning or troubleshooting statistical software packages such as R, Stata, or SAS
  • Data analysis support and programming advice
  • Statistical methodology questions
  • For social science research projects:
    • Research project planning and guidance
    • Use of research technology (e.g., screen scraping, social network analysis, and more)

To make an appointment or ask for tips on a project:

This service, based at Harvard, is provided by the Harvard-MIT Data Center and available to the MIT community as a pilot.

Learn Statistical Software in Workshops
In addition, attend one of the upcoming workshops on statistical software.

The Harvard-MIT Data Center also provides: a data repository, research computing environment, and a specialized computer lab.

For questions about these services, contact Jennie Murack, Statistics Specialist, or Katherine McNeill, Social Science Data Services Librarian.

What we did on your summer vacation!

Posted August 30th, 2013 by Heather Denny

Welcome back! The MIT Libraries have been working hard during your summer vacation.  Here are some of the new things you can look forward to this fall:WhatWeDidgraphic

New Resources

  • New search tool  Finding library resources just got easier with BartonPlus. It brings together many library collections in one search interface–searching most MIT-licensed e-resources like e-books and full-text articles, as well as collections in the classic Barton catalog like books, theses, music, DVDs, and more. 
  • More options for borrowing  Borrow Direct, a partnership that allows library materials to be shared between member institutions, has expanded to include the University of Chicago. MIT users can search over 50 million volumes owned by Borrow Direct libraries through MIT’s WorldCat.
  • New guide to APIs for scholarly resources  Many scholarly publishers, databases, and products offer APIs to allow users with programming skills to more powerfully extract data to serve a variety of research purposes. With an API, users might create programmatic searches of a citation database, extract statistical data, or dynamically query and post blog content. Learn more in the APIs for Scholarly Resources guide.
  • Music Oral History Project  For over 100 years music has been a vibrant part of MIT’s culture. A new website features in-depth interviews with faculty, staff, and former students about their musical experiences at the Institute, as well as their professional careers in music or other fields.

Improved study spaces

  • Upgrades to Hayden Library  The window bays in Hayden have gotten a facelift! The windows have been cleaned, frames painted, and new shades have replaced the curtains. Also check out the  new artwork by Dennis Oppenheim that adorns the first floor wall. Additionally, a number of tables and study carrels in Hayden were refinished this summer. Coming up – we hope to reupholster some of the comfy seating on the 1st floor.

Upcoming events

  • Music & Theater Arts Composer Forums  During the fall term the Lewis Music Library will host MTA Composer Forums. Stop by the library at 5pm on Oct. 9, Oct. 23, Nov. 6, Nov. 20 to hear from featured musicians.
  •  Fall workshops Throughout the month of October the Libraries will offer a series of workshops on subject-specific resources. See the event calendar for details.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest news!