Engineering

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 (http://dmp.data.jhu.edu/).  This presentation is being hosted by the MIT Libraries’ Research Data Management Team, which provides support for managing research data created at MIT (http://libraries.mit.edu/data-management).

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.



MIT Tech TV

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 gishelp@mit.edu 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: http://ist.mit.edu/services/software/esri/10

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 gishelp@mit.edu. For a listing of available courses visit the MIT GIS Services website: http://libraries.mit.edu/gis/teach/esrivc.html

For updates about GIS related events, new GIS data and software, and more subscribe to mitgis@mit.edu by visiting: http://mailman.mit.edu/mailman/listinfo/mitgis

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 scifinder.cas.org/mobile.
  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 help@cas.org, or 800-753-4227.

Harvard and MIT Libraries Explore Far-Reaching Alliance

Posted February 4th, 2011 by Heather Denny

Hayden Library, MIT

Widener Library, Harvard University

New agreement reflects physical proximity, cross-registration, joint programs, and research affinities

The Provosts of Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have charged their respective library systems to explore expanded collaborations for sharing library materials, advancing digital preservation and collection, and developing future off-site storage facilities.

Both institutions have identified increased collaboration between and among their complementary libraries as an essential element in developing the research library of the 21st century. While an ambitious level of collaboration is anticipated, each library system will remain engaged with and guided by the respective missions and priorities of each university. While enhanced collaboration may serve to reduce prospective costs, the focus of the collaboration is on the future of 21st-century library services, technologies, and collections.

“No single library system can expect to meet the full intellectual needs of the academic and research communities of MIT and Harvard,” stated Harvard Provost Steven E. Hyman. “A wide-ranging exploration of all opportunities for collaboration is of great interest to both institutions.”

Both formal and informal relationships already exist between the MIT and Harvard libraries. MIT has shared in the use of the Harvard Depository since its inception in 1985. A 1995 agreement between Harvard College Library (HCL) and MIT brought reciprocal borrowing privileges to faculty, researchers, and graduate students in both institutions. An April 2010 pilot program extended those privileges to undergraduate students.

While traditional library materials have been the focus of prior agreements, digital materials are at the forefront of the new alliance.

“The increasing primacy of digital materials brings its own urgency to our collaboration, ” observed MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif.  “As new models of online information delivery emerge, Harvard and MIT can support joint programs for open-access as well as joint acquisition and licensing approaches that are appropriate for education and academic research.”

Under the agreement, the two libraries will develop a four-tiered action plan by the end of 2011.  The four tiers are:

Reciprocal access to circulating collections

By developing linked access between Harvard and MIT library catalogs and implementing reciprocal privileges that extend to Harvard’s graduate and professional school libraries, library patrons can anticipate full access to 20 million volumes that users will experience as a single collection.

Enhancing digital preservation and collection practices

MIT and Harvard have earned leadership roles through their open access programs and repositories and through their respective approaches to digital preservation. High priority areas for collaborative growth include digital archives of faculty papers and web-based publications.

Developing wider access to electronic information

Questions of electronic serials pricing, and the costs of building digital information management and delivery systems, point to opportunities for Harvard and MIT to investigate new models for licensing agreements, as well as alternative, open access forms of publication that reflect each institution’s commitment to the dissemination of new knowledge.

Envisioning joint off-site storage facilities for the future

Harvard and MIT have shared the Harvard Depository for high-density, non-browsable, off-site storage since 1985. Together, the two universities could effectively anticipate both a new service model and an additional facility for off-site storage.

“We’ve enjoyed a collaborative working relationship with Harvard’s libraries for many years,” said Ann Wolpert, Director of the MIT Libraries.  “This new agreement builds on our successes and underscores the commitment we share to provide our communities with the best and broadest range of resources possible, and to be at the forefront of advancing the digital preservation of scholarly work.”

“In several ways, the libraries of Harvard and MIT are already united by proximity and affinity,” said Helen Shenton, Executive Director of the Harvard Library. “Our new agreement supports the distinct priorities of two very singular universities. At the same time, it challenges us to collaborate on a sustainable information ecosystem for the 21st century.”

Changing Access to JSTOR

Posted January 10th, 2011 by Ellen Duranceau

Because JSTOR has recently reported excessive, systematic downloading of articles at MIT, we need to add a new layer of access control. This is the only way to prevent recurrence of the abuse and therefore the only way to ensure ongoing access to this valuable resource for the MIT Community.

How this affects your access:

  • Whether you are on- or off-campus, you must use either the shortcut URL for JSTOR (http://libraries.mit.edu/get/jstor) or use the JSTOR link in Vera in order to be recognized as a subscriber.
  • Your current MIT status will be verified as you are passed through to the JSTOR site.
  • This change will take effect by Wednesday, January 12, and as early as Monday, January 10.

If you find you have any problem with access, please email econtrol-lib@mit.edu.

The incidents that prompted this change involved the use of a robot, which is prohibited by JSTOR’s Terms and Conditions of Use . Additionally, these incidents violated MITnet Rules of Use. Continued access to JSTOR and other resources is dependent on the MIT Community complying with these policies.

Thank you,
Steve Gass
Associate Director for Research & Instructional Services
MIT Libraries

MIT Undergraduate student wins Knovel University Challenge

Posted December 8th, 2010 by Heather McCann

Monica Isava, an MIT undergraduate student in Mechanical Engineering, recently won an iPod nano in Knovel’s University Challenge! More than 10,000 students from 40 countries entered the contest. Pictured above are: Monica Isava and Angie Locknar (Mechanical Engineering Librarian).

Although the contest is over, you can still use Knovel in your own research! Knovel offers fulltext access to many leading science and engineering reference works. Try it for yourself!

Library Locations Closed Over Christmas & New Year's Holiday Week

Posted December 2nd, 2010 by Melissa Feiden
MIT winter scene

photo by: Tom Pixton

All MIT Libraries locations, with the exception of the 24-hour study facilities in Hayden and Dewey libraries, will be closed Thursday, December 23, 2010 through Sunday, January 2, 2011, as a cost saving measure to meet Institute budget reductions.

During the closure, the Libraries’ website, Barton, Vera and access to electronic licensed resources will be available.  However, most library staff will be on furlough and will not be available to offer assistance. A small number of staff will be on-call to address any reported system outages; reasonable attempts will be made to bring systems back online as soon as possible.

While it will continue to be possible to make online requests for some MIT Libraries’ services or materials, these requests will not be acted upon until the Libraries reopen.  Due dates for materials on loan have been adjusted to reflect the closure – no items will be due during this period and fines will not accrue.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

Visit our library hours page for a complete list of individual library hours.

Please send questions, comments or concerns to budgetfeedback-lib@mit.edu.