OA research in the news: Wireless@MIT

Posted October 25th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

The Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory has launched the MIT Center for Wireless Networks and Mobile Computing (Wireless@MIT), whose goal is to bring researchers from MIT and industry together to develop next-generation wireless technologies. The center, co-led by electrical engineering and computer science professors Hari Balakrishnan and Dina Katabi, will work on problems like extending the battery life of mobile devices and figuring out how to do more with the limited radio spectrum licensed to wireless carriers.

Explore Professor Balakrishnan’s research and Professor Katabi’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.

Ongoing renovations will close Barker Reading Room until early 2013

Posted October 18th, 2012 by Heather Denny

Barker Reading Room, photo by L. Barry Hetherington

Renovations to the Barker Library Reading Room have recently been expanded in scope and complexity. As is often the case with historic restoration, previously undetected structural issues have been detected and need to be addressed. At the same time this work will also allow for additional lighting enhancements to be made. Interior scaffolding will now be expanded, and will fill the remaining floor space in the Reading Room, making the room inaccessible to students and faculty for the duration of the project. The closure is effective October 18, 2012.

The Libraries understand the inconvenience this closure will cause, and sincerely regret the mid-semester disruption to student work and study habits. Library staff will make every effort to assist students in finding other suitable study spaces within the Libraries. While the Reading Room is closed, library users can find alternative spaces for studying in Barker Library on floors six through eight, as well as in other library locations.

Barker Library’s Reading Room is still expected to reopen early in 2013. At that time the Libraries also expect to debut a new entryway to the reading room that will give students 24/7 access to the newly renovated space. For more details about the renovations, see the September 28, 2012 MIT Tech article. Stay informed of progress by checking the Barker Library website or following @mitlibraries on Twitter.

OA research in the news: Why is Usain Bolt so fast?

Posted August 9th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

As Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt runs today for his second gold medal of the London Olympic Games, many spectators wonder: how does he go so fast? Mechanical engineering professor Anette Hosoi offers some insight in a Q&A with MIT News and in a series of videos for NBC Learn’s “Science of the Summer Olympics.”  “[T]he amazing thing about Usain Bolt, the thing that sets him apart, is his stride length, which is almost 10 feet,” she says. (By comparison, Hosoi found that her own stride was half that long.) Hosoi, whose field is fluid mechanics, also explains what makes a “fast pool” for competitors, helping the likes of Michael Phelps set world records.

Explore Professor Hosoi’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.

Barker Reading Room to close for summer renovations

Posted August 1st, 2012 by Heather Denny

Barker Reading Room, photo by L. Barry Hetherington

August 1, 2012 UPDATE–On August 14, Barker Library’s main reading room will close temporarily to allow for restoration work to the Great Dome’s ceiling, as well as renovations to the reading room itself. Most of the disruptive work is expected to be completed during August, allowing the reading room to reopen by, or shortly after, the start of the fall term.


May 14, 2012–After Commencement on June 8, 2012 the Barker Library Reading Room will close for the summer to allow for renovations to the Reading Room and Dome. The Reading Room is expected to reopen in September 2012 for the fall term, although renovations will continue through December with occasional minor disruptions.

As part of the project, a new entrance will be added to the Reading Room to make it accessible as a 24-hour study space. An around-the-clock Reading Room under the iconic Dome will significantly expand students’ options for late night study on campus. Currently the Libraries offer secure 24/7 study areas in both Hayden and Dewey libraries, the addition of the Barker Reading Room will more than triple the amount of space currently available for 24/7 study. The Libraries expect to inaugurate 24-hour service in Barker beginning in January 2013.

While the Reading Room is closed, library users can find alternative spaces for studying in Barker Library on floors six through eight, as well as in other library locations. Stay informed of renovation closures and progress by checking the Barker Library website or following @mitlibraries on Twitter.

Open access research in the news

Posted June 4th, 2012 by Katharine Dunn

MIT researchers bid adieu to sticky condiments

It is a problem familiar to most of us: The last ounces of ketchup just won’t shake free from the bottle, so we throw it out, wasting food and money. In May, the architects of a solution won the audience choice award at MIT’s $100K Entrepreneurship Competition. Scientists from the lab of mechanical engineering professor Kripa Varanasi invented a plant-based coating they call LiquiGlide, a slippery material that helps any condiment—from honey to mayonnaise—slide easily out of glass or plastic. “We’ve talked to various folks in the supply chain, from equipment makers to bottle makers to food companies, and they all love it and want it in their bottles,” Varanasi told the Boston Globe. Varanasi’s lab has also created surfaces and coatings that keep frost off planes and allow water to flow more efficiently through pipes.

Explore Professor Varanasi’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.

IAPril 2012: Patent Searching Fundamentals

Posted March 23rd, 2012 by Mark Szarko

When: Tues April 3, 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Where: 14N-132

While you won’t come out of this session qualified to be a patent attorney, you will be able to successfully find patent references from all over the world and know how to obtain patent text and diagrams. The session will be a hands-on practicum that will help de-mystify the patent literature and expose attendees to key resources for finding patents through free resources available on the web.

Please register for this session. For more information, please contact Howard Silver with any questions.

Elsevier Boycott Grows: MIT Faculty Speak About Participation

Posted February 10th, 2012 by Ellen Duranceau

The boycott of Elsevier started by mathematician Timothy Gowers has rapidily grown to nearly 5000 names, including at least 45 from MIT. MIT signers, who constitute nearly one percent of participants, come from all across MIT, including Biology, CSAIL, EECS, Linguistics, Math, the Media Lab, Philosophy, and Physics.

“I signed the petition simply because I believe that if taxpayers fund research, they should have access to the results of that research without going through a paywall,” says EECS Professor Seth Teller.

Those taxpayers would not have access to government-funded research if Elsevier has its way. Elsevier supports the Research Works Act (RWA), which would prohibit the government from requiring authors to openly share articles that result from the research it funds, thus making the existing NIH Public Access Policy, or any others like it, illegal.

For Professor Scott Aaronson, “signing this petition was a no-brainer.” He “started boycotting Elsevier and most other commercial publishers as a graduate student, because the economic model didn’t make sense” to him. “I couldn’t understand why academics were (1) donating their papers to publishers like Elsevier, (2) signing away their copyrights, (3) asking their universities’ libraries to buy *back* the papers at exorbitant, ever-increasing costs, and (4) even reviewing the papers (an onerous burden) free of charge, all while I could see for myself that the publishers were providing little or no ‘value-added,’ since most people just downloaded the papers from the arXiv or the authors’ homepages anyway.”

For Professor Aaronson, this boycott has been a long time coming. “I’ve simply been waiting for what I saw as the inevitable moment when a critical mass of academics would ‘wake up’ to the issue” that the existing publishing model, with ever-increasing prices, was “unsustainable,” he says. “Now that one of the greatest mathematicians on earth (Timothy Gowers) is spearheading the boycott movement, and dozens of other leading figures in the mathematical community have declared their support, that moment may have arrived.”

More information:

“Glass at MIT: Beauty and Utility” Opening Feb.10 in the Maihaugen Gallery

Posted February 1st, 2012 by Heather Denny

Please join us for the opening of the MIT Libraries’ latest exhibit GLASS AT MIT: BEAUTY AND UTILITY

Date: Friday, February 10, 2-4pm
Location: Maihaugen Gallery (14N-130)

A new exhibition in the Libraries’ Maihaugen Gallery explores glassmaking as revealed in glassware from MIT laboratories, blown glass from the MIT Glass Lab, and stunning stained glass windows from the Libraries’ Charles J. Connick Stained Glass Foundation Collection. Tools, early photographs, and selections from rare books demonstrate the combination of artistry and engineering that goes into the creation of glass.

This event is free and open to the community.

Presentation on Research Data Management Services at Johns Hopkins

Posted November 4th, 2011 by Katherine McNeill

Please join us for a presentation by Sayeed Choudhury on the development of research data management services provided to the Johns Hopkins University research community by the Sheridan Libraries (  This presentation is being hosted by the MIT Libraries’ Research Data Management Team, which provides support for managing research data created at MIT (

Date:  Monday, Nov. 7th
Time:  2-3pm
Place: 6-120

Bio: G. Sayeed Choudhury is the Associate Dean for Library Digital Programs and Hodson Director of the Digital Research and Curation Center at the Sheridan Libraries of Johns Hopkins University. He is also the Director of Operations for the Institute of Data Intensive Engineering and Science (IDIES) based at Johns Hopkins. He is the Principal Investigator for the Data Conservancy, one of the awards through NSF’s DataNet program. He has oversight for the digital library activities and services provided by the Sheridan Libraries at Johns Hopkins University.

Date: Monday, Nov. 7th

>Time: 2-3pm

>Place: 6-120

Barker Library hosts late night demo of Foucault’s Pendulum

Posted November 3rd, 2011 by Heather Denny

Staying up late in the library is common at MIT, but in this video, six grad students pull an all-nighter for a different reason – to prove that the Earth is rotating about its axis. How do they accomplish this? With a 160-year old demonstration called a Foucault’s Pendulum.


ESRI Business Analyst available through MIT GIS Services

Posted October 19th, 2011 by Lisa Sweeney
Business Analyst

Business analyst data for Boston's Back Bay neighborhood

This package combines detailed data about business, consumer spending, demographics, segmentations, and major shopping centers with tools for analyzing geographically.


Find out more about the data types available and its capabilities.

Business Analyst Desktop is available in the MIT GIS Lab for teaching and research purposes. Business Analyst Online is also available for teaching in MIT classes. Contact with questions or if you would like access to Business Analyst Online for a class.

Welcome back! Check out what the Libraries did over your summer vacation.

Posted September 22nd, 2011 by Heather Denny

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:

New resources

Library hours & study space

Upcoming Events

View the What we did on your summer vacation flyer (pdf).

GIS workshops – Fall 2011 Series

Posted September 19th, 2011 by Lisa Sweeney

MIT GIS Services

Come learn about creating maps and doing geographic analysis!

Register for the Fall GIS workshop series.

Workshops include:

  • Introduction to GIS – Friday, Sept. 23, 1-3:30 pm or Tuesday, Sept. 27, 4-5:30 pm.  This session will introduce students to open source and proprietary GIS options.
  • Introduction to GIS for Architecture – Wednesday, Oct. 12, 12:30-2 pm
  • Discovering and Using US Census Data – Tuesday, Oct. 18, 1-3:30 pm
  • Exploring Spatial Patterns using ArcMap – Tuesday, Nov. 1, 1-3:30 pm
  • Introduction to Spatial Statistics Tools and Analysis in ArcMap – Tuesday, Nov. 8, 1-3:30 pm
  • Introduction to Regression Analysis in ArcMap – Tuesday, Nov. 15, 1-3:30 pm

Into the Sky with Diamonds: book discussion with author

Posted September 7th, 2011 by Christie Moore

Thursday, Sept. 29, 4-5 pm in the Lewis Music Library (14E-109)

grelsamerRonald P. Grelsamer, M.D. will discuss his book, Into the Sky with Diamonds: the Beatles and the Race to the Moon in the Psychedelic ’60s. NASA Astronaut and MIT Professor Jeffrey A. Hoffman will also participate in this event.

Dr. Grelsamer is Chief, Patellofemoral Reconstruction at the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York.

This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.
For more information, email Peter Munstedt or call 617-253-5636.

Barker Library closes early on Wednesday, August 31

Posted August 29th, 2011 by Mark Szarko

Barker Library will close at 4pm on Wednesday, August 31 due to previously-scheduled special event.

Reference services will be available in the Hayden Library (14S-100) or online through AskUs!.

Barker will re-open for normal business hours on Thursday, September 1st.

ESRI ArcGIS 10 Downloadable

Posted May 12th, 2011 by mit-admin

The latest version of the ESRI GIS software (including ArcGIS/ArcMap) and ESRI Data and Maps are now available to the MIT community via download from:

Use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to make maps and analyze spatial information. Learn more about using GIS for your teaching at research at MIT GIS Services.

MIT GIS Services Globe

Digital library partnership gives MIT access to additional online resources

Posted April 20th, 2011 by Heather Denny

The MIT Libraries have recently joined HathiTrust, a partnership of over fifty academic libraries that share the ambitious goal of building a comprehensive digital library of their shared collections.

Started in 2008, the HathiTrust digital library currently contains over 8.5 million digitized volumes representing the collections of partner institutions. HathiTrust’s collections include both copyright and public domain materials digitized by Google, the Internet Archive, and Microsoft, as well as partner institutions.  Founded by twelve universities from the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, the University of California system and the University of Virginia, the partnership has now grown to include fifty-five institutions.  MIT and Harvard are two of the most recent universities to join.

Through the HathiTrust website, the public can search the full-text of 8.4 million digitized volumes, and get full online access to 2.2 million volumes that are in the public domain.  With the MIT Libraries membership, the MIT community will have the added benefit of being able to download full volumes of public domain works in PDF format, and also build and share collections using the Collection Builder feature.  Access will be provided to MIT users, with authentication through Touchstone, later this year.

Joining HathiTrust is one of several steps the MIT Libraries have recently taken to expand access for MIT faculty and students to print or digitized resources beyond the holdings of MIT.  In January, the Libraries announced their membership in Borrow Direct, a partnership with Ivy Plus libraries that gives the MIT community access to nearly 50 million print items. In February, MIT and Harvard libraries jointly announced an expanded alliance to explore collaborations for sharing library materials, advancing digital preservation collections practice, and developing future off-site storage facilities and services.

“In today’s interdisciplinary learning environment, it’s essential for our faculty, students and researchers to have access to an even wider array of information resources than ever before.  By collaborating with other outstanding research libraries, we can offer the resources necessary to support the cutting edge research and education that is MIT’s hallmark,” said MIT Director of Libraries, Ann Wolpert.

Wolpert added that it is important for universities to take a leading role in shaping digital libraries. “Libraries have been stewards of the scholarly record for centuries,” she said.  “We’re committed to the long haul.”

The MIT Libraries are actively involved in open access initiatives that support MIT’s mission to make scholarly knowledge openly available to the world.  Partnering with HathiTrust, an organization committed to collecting, organizing, preserving, communicating, and sharing the record of human knowledge, is in line with the Libraries principles of supporting the long-term curation of the cultural record, and furthering global scholarship and research.

GIS courses available online through ESRI Virtual Campus

Posted April 19th, 2011 by Lisa Sweeney

Want to learn about GIS online, on your own time? The MIT community has access to many virtual campus courses from ESRI. Courses can help students learn many skills including: using ArcGIS, working in 3D, raster analysis, programming with Python, and creating mobile GIS applications. The virtual campus addresses a variety of topics including getting started with the basics of GIS and working with HAZUS – using GIS technology to estimate physical, economic, and social impacts of disasters.

The MIT community can sign up for ESRI virtual campus courses for free by emailing For a listing of available courses visit the MIT GIS Services website:

For updates about GIS related events, new GIS data and software, and more subscribe to by visiting:

Change in IEEE Author Policy: Impact on MIT Faculty Open Access Policy

Posted March 23rd, 2011 by Ellen Duranceau

In January 2011, the IEEE changed a key author policy, discontinuing the right authors had to post the final published version of their IEEE articles on the web. This alters what authors can do with their work and how the MIT Faculty Open Access Policy can be implemented for these papers.

The policy change is not retrospective: papers posted before January do not need to be taken down from the web. But from January on, authors may post only their accepted manuscripts, not the final published version of their articles.

As a consequence of this policy change, the MIT Libraries can no longer copy the final published articles from IEEE’s database and post them in MIT’s research repository, Dspace@MIT, as we have been doing since the faculty passed their Open Access Policy.

Instead, the Libraries are now requesting that authors submit their final accepted manuscripts of IEEE papers for deposit under the Policy. Papers can be uploaded through a simple web form and will appear in the Open Access Articles Collection.

For more information:

Access scientific information on the go with SciFinder Mobile!

Posted March 1st, 2011 by Barbara Williams

SciFinder Mobile is now available to those registered to use the web version of SciFinder at MIT.

Accessing SciFinder Mobile is easy. Using the web browser on your smartphone

  1. Visit
  2. Sign in with your SciFinder web version username and password and you’ll be seamlessly directed to the mobile-friendly version of SciFinder.

Use SciFinder Mobile anytime and anyplace.

With SciFinder Mobile, you can:

  • Explore by Research Topic. Locate information on a specific area of research
  • Explore by Substance Identifier. Search for substances of interest to retrieve information such as molecular formula, predicted properties, and experimental properties
  • Explore by Author Name. Enter an author’s name to locate their published research
  • Explore by Company Name. Find articles and patents issued by a particular company, academic institution, or government organization
  • Review Keep Me Posted Alerts.* Stay up-to-date with the latest information found via SciFinder Keep Me Posted alerts that were Previously created in the web version of SciFinder

  • Retrieve Saved Answer Sets.* Review search results from SciFinder Saved Answer Sets

* From alerts and answer sets that were previously created in the web version of SciFinder

Remember you are limited to 100 detailed substance or reference displays per day.

Questions, contact the CAS Customer Center at, or 800-753-4227.