Subject/Topic areas

Climate Change volumes now online

Posted April 11th, 2014 by Chris Sherratt

Many will already be aware that Dr. James Hansen, one of the most prominent voices in the climate change conversation, visits our campus next week. In honor of his visit, the Libraries would like to highlight the new, five volume online resource, Climate Vulnerability: understanding and addressing threats to essential resources.

It would be difficult to find an aspect of this challenging topic not addressed in this collection of essays. Well referenced and written by experts, the articles explore the vulnerability of human health, food resources, energy, ecosystems and water to our climate and its changes. They address science, policy, economics and social ramifications of these changes in the world around us.temperature_gis_2012We hope you explore!  Image credit: NASA

 

Community Archives in the Digital Era: Creating the South Asian American Digital Archive

Posted April 11th, 2014 by Mark Szarko
Samip Mallick

Samip Mallick

Desis Rising Up and Moving (DRUM)

Please join the MIT Libraries for a discussion with Samip Mallick, co-founder and Executive Director of The South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA). SAADA works nationally to give voice to South Asian Americans by documenting, preserving, and sharing stories that reflect their diverse experiences.

Mallick will share stories from the archive and SAADA’s unique approach to documenting and preserving community history. The discussion will be moderated by Professor Vivek Bald of MIT Comparative Media Studies/Writing.

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Photograph of Vaishno Das Bagai, pictured in a general store. Courtesy of Rani Bagai

 

 

 

Founded in 2008, SAADA has built a digital archive of over 1600 items, and through outreach and educational programming has raised awareness about the rich histories of South Asians in the United States.

Refreshments will be served.

Date: Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Place: 2-105
Time: 4:00-6:00pm
4-4:30: refreshments
4:30-6:00: talk followed by Q&A

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact: Michelle Baildon baildon@mit.edu

Additional support is provided by the MIT Asian Pacific American Employee Resource Group, the Center for Bilingual/Bicultural StudiesMIT India, and MIT’s programs in Comparative Media Studies/Writing and History.

“Be Thou the Advocate…”

Posted April 10th, 2014 by Nora Murphy

Happy Charter Day, MIT!

Letter from Governor Andrew to William Barton Rogers, 9 March 1861

On this day, 153 years ago, the Massachusetts legislature passed, and Governor John Andrew approved, legislation that established MIT.

On March 9, 1861, Governor Andrew had written to William Barton Rogers that a meeting had been scheduled with the State Board of Education to afford an opportunity for proponents of the plan to explain its advantages for education and industry. The letter reproduced here expresses the governor’s confidence in Rogers’s dynamic personality and powers of persuasion.

Rogers had worked long and hard to establish a polytechnic school in Boston, spending years sharing his vision and soliciting support. Two days later the U.S. Civil War began when Confederate soldiers fired upon Fort Sumter. MIT’s first classes were not held until 1865, shortly before the end of the war.

More information about the establishment of MIT is available on the  Institute Archives and Special Collections web site. MIT’s original charter is housed at the Massachusetts Archives among the acts and resolves of the Commonwealth.

Help identify MIT Banjo Club of ca.1893

Posted April 10th, 2014 by Christie Moore

Is one of these players your ancestor? Help identify members of MIT’s Banjo Club of ca.1893, the picture hanging outside the Lewis Music Library!

BanjoClub_1893webFrom yearbooks in the Institute Archives and Special Collections, we have made some tentative IDs. Left to right, standing: Nathan Cheney ’94; possibly Floyd Frazier ’96; Winthrop Tracy Case ’94; possibly Edwin Francis Hicks ’94; possibly F.S.V. Sias ’95. Sitting: possibly Lucius Spaulding Tyler ’96; Albert William Thompson ’95 or ’96; George Frederic Shepard, Jr., ’95.

Post a comment on the Lewis Music Library Facebook page if you can help!

 

Find business case studies

Posted April 8th, 2014 by Katherine McNeill

Need business case studies for a course? There’s no shortage of sources — a Google search turns up hundreds of distributors of business cases. Here are our top picks for cases on any subject within business and management.

Sloan LearningEdge
A collection of cases from Sloan in entrepreneurship, leadership, ethics, operations management, strategy, sustainability and system dynamics.

MIT Center for Information Systems Research
To find business cases on the CISR website, go to Publication Search and select Working Paper (case studies are found in this category).

Harvard Business School case studies
Harvard Business Publishing has thousands of business cases available. Our interlibrary borrowing service can obtain cases needed for your MIT-related coursework or research. Abstracts of HBS cases can also be found in Business Source Complete. Enter “Harvard Business School cases” in the SO Publication Name field.

ABI/Inform Global and Business Source Complete are Libraries databases covering scholarly articles and other types of literature in business and management. To find case studies, use the Document Type limiter in Advanced Search.

Social Science Research Network (SSRN) is resource for working papers in management and other social sciences. Use Title/Abstract search and include “case study” (in quotes) in your search.

Many websites list cases available for purchase. Here are some of the best-known distributors:

  • The Aspen Institute sponsors CasePlace.org, a distributor of cases and other teaching resources from a variety of publishers. Use Advanced Search and select Product Type: cases.
  • The China Europe International Business School provides access to cases through its China Case Clearing House. Although it distributes cases from schools worldwide, the emphasis is on China-related enterprises.
  • The Case Centre is an independent, non-profit organization focused on promoting the case method in business education.
  • The Ivey Business School, University of Western Ontario, distributes cases from business schools worldwide through Ivey Publishing.

Have questions about business case studies? Ask Us!

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.

Science poetry reading April 10 in the Lewis Music Library

Posted April 4th, 2014 by Katharine Dunn

2013_poetry-e_DickinsonThe MIT Libraries is hosting a poetry reading in the Lewis Music Library on Thursday, April 10, with author and professor Adam Dickinson.

Dickinson’s latest collection, The Polymers, is an imaginary science project at the intersection of chemistry and poetry. It was a finalist for Canada’s 2013 Governor General’s Award for Poetry and was recently called “the most exciting book of English poetry published anywhere last year.”

Dickinson sees The Polymers as part of “ecopoetics,” or “ecocriticism, …a kind of environmental activism practiced using the resources of poetry and poetics rather than simply traditional academic scholarship.”

Date: Thursday, April 10, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 5:00- 6:00 pm
Reception to follow

The event is free and open to the public.

The origins of MIT’s Specifications for Thesis Preparation

Posted April 3rd, 2014 by Nora Murphy

Faculty Minutes, 23 May 1868As the deadline for submitting theses for the 2014 June degree period approaches, students may be wondering how the specifications originated. 

In May of 1868 the MIT faculty voted to approve the first specifications for theses, requiring only that a thesis be written “on paper of ordinary letter size (about 8 x 10 in.), on one side of the paper only, and with a margin of one inch on the left.” In 1872 additional specifications were added: the paper was to be of good quality, “with drawings on double elephant paper 40 x 27, or single elephant 20 x 27.” Early theses were handwritten, with hand drawings of illustrations, until about 1914 when typewriters began to be used with regularity.

For more information about early theses, and the development of thesis specifications, contact the Institute Archives and Special Collections. Current thesis specifications are prescribed by the Committee on Graduate Programs and the Committee on Undergraduate Programs and are published by the MIT Libraries.

OA research in the news: Gleason named Associate Provost

Posted April 3rd, 2014 by Katharine Dunn
Karen Gleason

Karen Gleason

Chemical Engineering professor Karen Gleason was named this week as MIT’s Associate Provost. Gleason, a faculty member since 1987, has previously served in several administrative roles, including associate dean of engineering for research. She holds 18 patents for work in chemical vapor deposition polymers and their applications in optoelectronics, sensing, microfluidics, energy, biomedicine, and membranes. Provost Martin Schmidt said Gleason’s entrepreneurship and experience with industry  will be helpful in “strengthening MIT’s industrial engagements.”

Explore Professor Gleason’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.

Violin music concert Friday, 4/11/14

Posted April 1st, 2014 by Christie Moore

sjia_achow_cropThe 12th annual Prokopoff violin music concert will be held on Friday, April 11, from 1-2 pm in the Lewis Music Library. Nine talented MIT students will perform music by Rachmaninoff, Chopin, Wieniawski, Bach, Paganini, and Elgar. Come enjoy some wonderful music in an attractive setting!

This event highlights the more than 2,000 violin music scores collected by Stephen Prokopoff and donated to the library in 2001 by Lois Craig, former Associate Dean of MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning.

Date: Friday, April 11, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: 1 – 2 pm

The concert is free and open to the public.

Reclaiming your copyright after 35 years: a new opportunity

Posted March 31st, 2014 by Ellen Duranceau

Starting in 2013, authors began to have the ability to reclaim copyrights they transferred to a publisher in 1978 or later. Copyright law permits authors to reclaim their copyrights 35 years after transferring rights for purposes of publication. Authors interested in reclaiming copyright need to file a notice in advance, according to a designated timetable.

Reclaiming copyright allows the author to make new publishing arrangements, including making the work openly available on the web, or taking advantage of new economic opportunities.

Initiating the required notice to the Copyright Office involves very specific steps that must be taken on a particular timetable. A few of the key parameters include:

  • The notice to the copyright holder (publisher) must include specific pieces of information, and must also be registered with the Copyright Office
  • The notice must be provided to the copyright holder within 10 years and no later than two years before the copyright would terminate under the notice (see Sample calculations)
  • Termination must occur during a five year period beginning 35 years after publication

In a simple case, these specifications likely mean that for a work published in 1981, the last year a notice could be sent to inform the publisher about termination would be this year, in 2014. An author may require the assistance of an attorney to determine exactly whether and how the requirements apply, as the process is complex.

For more information:

Ellen Finnie Duranceau / Program Manager, Scholarly Publishing, Copyright, and Licensing / MIT Libraries

E-books to enhance professional development

Posted March 28th, 2014 by Barbara Williams
MIT Libraries resources support online professional development courses for the MIT community.

MIT faculty, staff and students have access to Lynda.com, and a recently added collection of online classes from Skillsoft that focus on business, management and IT.

The MIT Libraries provide access to e-book collections that supplement and enhance the online courses at Lynda.com and Skillsoft.

Books 24×7: full-text e-books on engineering and IT topics

Safari Technical Books Online: IT books published by O’Reilly

MIT Press Ebooks: e-books available from the MIT Press

Springer Ebooks: e-books published by Springer on a variety of scientific topics

For more information on e-books offered by the MIT Libraries, see the MIT Libraries’ E-book Research Guide.

ebook247

Preservation Week, April 29–May 1: Explore the art and science of preserving cultural heritage

Posted March 27th, 2014 by Heather Denny

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Join us for a variety of events that highlight the importance of preserving cultural heritage materials during National Preservation Week.

Tuesday, April 29th, starting at 12 pm

The Art and Science of Document Security: Past, Present, and Future, 32-144 A series of talks presenting research on historical, contemporary, and novel methods for creating secure documents in all forms. Join us for one session or several. There will be breaks for refreshments and questions throughout.

  • 12:15 pm “Our Marathon”: The Boston Bombing Digital Archive
    Our Marathon is a crowd-sourced digital archive of stories, photos, video, and social media related to the Boston Marathon bombings and aftermath. Join us for a brown bag talk with Jim McGrath and Alicia Peaker from the Our Marathon team for an overview of the project and the archive.
  • 1:00 pm      Opening Remarks
  • 1:15 pm     Our Digital Lives: Protecting Our Data In Use and At Rest, Michael Halsall, Senior Network and Information Security Analyst at MIT

  • 1:45 pm    Benign Neglect No More: How Document Security Affects Access to Memory, Kari R. Smith, Digital Archivist, MIT Libraries Institute Archives and Special Collections
  • 2:45 pm    Historic Letterlocking: The Art and Security of Letterwriting, Jana Dambrogio, Thomas F. Peterson (1957) Conservator, MIT Libraries Curation and Preservation Services
  • 4:00 pm    Thanks for the Memory: 50+ Years of Computing at MIT exhibit, 14N-130 Gallery visit led by Nora Murphy, Archivist for Reference, Outreach, and Instruction, MIT Institute Archives and Special Collections, Maihaugen Gallery  

  • 8:00 pm   The Monuments Men Movie Screening, 26-100 Enjoy a free screening of The Monuments Men. George Clooney portrays a local art conservation hero George Stout who saved cultural heritage from ruin during WWII.

Wednesday, April 30th, 11 am-3 pm

  • Our Marathon “Share Your Story” event, 10-105 Representatives from the Our Marathon online collection of Boston Marathon Bombing experiences will be on campus to document the personal experiences of the MIT community during and after the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombing.

May 1st, 2-3 pm

  • Scrapbook Preservation webinar, 14N-132 Interested in preserving your own items? Join us for a free webinar about scrapbook preservation hosted by the American Library Association. Melissa Tedone, Conservator of the Parks Library Preservation Department at Iowa State University, will talk about older scrapbooks as well as how to identify the most stable materials for new scrapbooks.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information contact preservation-team@mit.edu, or see the Preservation Week website.

Text-mining contract signed by Libraries offers computational access to Elsevier articles

Posted March 26th, 2014 by Ellen Duranceau

elsevier logoThe MIT Libraries have signed an agreement with Elsevier, the largest publisher of journal articles in the world, to allow members of the MIT community to text-mine scholarly articles subscribed to through Elsevier’s ScienceDirect service.

Typically, licensed access to journals like Elsevier’s does not permit systematic searching or downloading, and excludes the use of software agents, robots, or scripts. This has been a disappointment to many researchers, who wish to take advantage of automated tools to carry out new forms of research, speed up the research process, and enhance discovery and innovation.

Elsevier’s new service is a response to what they called “legitimate criticism” that publishers were not responding to researcher requests for text-mining. Chris Shillum, vice-president of product management for platform and content at Elsevier, told Nature Publishing that Elsevier had been considering requests “case by case,” but “now wants to make text-mining permissions quicker and easier to obtain,” by taking “’the practical barriers away.’”

The new text-mining service for Elsevier articles is available by contacting the Libraries’ Office of Scholarly Publishing, Copyright & Licensing through the address textmine@mit.edu.

When sending a request, please include your name, a short description of your proposed project (which could be simply to experiment with the service), and who else would be involved in this research. The Libraries will obtain an API key for you to use in carrying out your text-mining research. The researcher does not need to sign any agreement – the Libraries’ agreement removes that hurdle.

Use is limited to noncommercial research, with “snippets or bibliographic metadata” from the resulting dataset (that is, not the fulltext of articles) shareable through a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial license.

If you have any questions about this new service, please contact:

Ellen Finnie Duranceau / Program Manager, Scholarly Publishing, Copyright & Licensing / MIT Libraries

More information :

Discovering the Libraries: Lewis Music Library

Posted March 26th, 2014 by Pritee Tembhekar

By MIT Libraries’ student blogger, Pri Tembhekar

Hello everyone!

MusicLibSm

Some great study spaces in the Lewis Music Library.

This week’s post is about one of my favorite places to study–the Lewis Music Library. It is especially valuable for classical music aficionados but has resources for all to enjoy. I often visit the music library when I’m craving a quieter place to work but one that is not as oppressive or pungent as, say, the reading room in the student center. The upstairs study nook is good for more casual work. The large tables downstairs provide ample room to spread out your papers and get to business. Upstairs, there are two group study rooms that are ideal for team meetings. The group study rooms can also be used by one person, but they must relocate should a group need the space.

The music library also offers much more beyond a quiet, calm, and naturally lit study space. All that studying can cause considerable stress. From first-hand experience I know that playing music can relieve stress and encourage a happier perspective. If you’ve been meaning to get back to a musical instrument that you once loved, Lewis Library’s scores can help. With over 39,000 musical scores, there’s certainly something you can pick up to ease back into playing music. There are also pieces from 1880-1920 in the Inventions of Note collection that can be accessed online.

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There are pianos on the 1st and 2nd floor as well as Macintosh computers with music software on both floors.

Once you are back into the swing of music, you might consider joining other musicians for an open mic afternoon. Full reign of the piano and a captive audience are up for grabs about once a month in the Lewis Music Library. The next open mic event is Friday April 4th from 12-1 pm in the music library. A full list of music library events, including professional performances, can be found here.

The music library also offers other handy resources to keep in mind. There is a scanner/copier and Macintosh computers on the second floor. These computers have music software that allows for editing and composition. This includes Sibelius7, Finale 2012, Reaper 4, and Logic Pro X. Listening devices for VHS, DVD, and CDs are also available and can be used in the group rooms to facilitate music study. Finally, the library specializes in in-depth research. There are starter guides available, as well as interesting finds such as the oral history collection, and online streaming.

 

Improving Water Quality in 19th Century Massachusetts

Posted March 25th, 2014 by Nora Murphy

A recent MIT news spotlight on research for detecting bacteria brought to mind 19th century research on water quality in Massachusetts.

05.18.10.01_Ellen_edit_300In the 1880s MIT chemist Ellen Swallow Richards, in collaboration with faculty member Dr. Thomas Drown, undertook a multi-year, comprehensive survey of the Massachusetts water supplies for the State Board of Health. The results included definitive information about the flow of rivers, analysis of the chemicals in the water, and high and low water marks. The most significant outcome was the creation of a ‘normal chlorine’ map of the Commonwealth’s water supplies. The varying amounts of chlorine in the water samples taken from Massachusetts’ rivers revealed the extent of man-made pollution in the Commonwealth. The findings lead to the establishment in Massachusetts of the first water-quality standards in the U.S.

Ellen Swallow Richards was chemist to the Massachusetts Board of Health from 1872 to 1875 and water analyst from 1887 to 1897, and an advocate for sanitary water and safe cooking standards throughout her life.

To examine the papers of Ellen Swallow Richards, and to learn more about and MIT’s long history of research on sanitary chemistry and food technology, contact the MIT Institute Archives and Special Collections. Additional information about Mrs. Richards and her scientific contributions are available online.

OA research in the news: New evidence for the ‘bang’ of the Big Bang

Posted March 20th, 2014 by Katharine Dunn
Alan Guth

Alan Guth

This week, a team of astronomers announced the first “smoking gun” evidence of inflation, a theory of cosmology that describes the quick and violent expansion of the universe in its first fractions of a second. Inflation is the “‘bang’ of the Big Bang,” says Alan Guth, an MIT physics professor who first proposed the theory in 1980. “In its original form, the Big Bang theory never was a theory of the bang. It said nothing about what banged, why it banged, or what happened before it banged.”

The astronomers peered into the cosmic microwave background, a bath of radiation from the early universe, and saw the influence of ripples in space-time, known as gravitational waves. These offer extremely strong evidence that the universe expanded by a repulsive form of gravity, as described by Guth and others.

Explore Professor Guth’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.

Next open mic in the Lewis Music Library: April 4

Posted March 20th, 2014 by Christie Moore
piano

Piano obtained through the Class of 1982 Music Library Fund

It’s happening again: Library music! Open mic in the Lewis Music Library, a chance to try out the new piano. Come jam, perform, or just listen. Everyone welcome. Bring your own music or use the library’s (we’ve got lots!).

Date: Friday, April 4, 2014
Place: Lewis Music Library, Bldg. 14E-109
Time: noon- 1 pm
Refreshments provided

Save the date! One more first Friday open mic event this semester: May 2, 2014

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.

Five years on: University open access policies on the rise

Posted March 18th, 2014 by Katharine Dunn

uc_oap6bIn the five years (to the day!) since MIT faculty unanimously voted to pass the MIT Faculty Open Access Policy, dozens of other colleges and universities in North America have followed suit. In 2013 alone, nine institutions, or schools within institutions, committed to open access policies. These include Oregon State University, Wellesley College, the University of Rhode Island, Caltech, Bryn Mawr, and one of the largest public research universities in the world, the University of California. Faculty members at UC, which has 10 campuses and more than 8,000 faculty, receive about 8% of all research funding in the United States.

“Scholars everywhere owe deep thanks to the UC faculty,” wrote Peter Suber, director of the Harvard Office for Scholarly Communication, when the UC policy passed in July 2013. “[The policy] will increase the momentum for other universities to adopt their own OA policies. And it will prove that even the largest and most complex universities can still adopt OA policies by faculty vote.”

The recent policies all use language similar to MIT and Harvard, whose Faculty of Arts and Sciences passed the first OA policy in North America in 2008. They are permission based, which means faculty authors give their university a license to make articles freely available in an online repository like DSpace. In other words, OA policies like these shift the default to open access. As noted by the UC Office of the Academic Senate, “The adoption of this policy across the UC system also signals to scholarly publishers that open access, in terms defined by faculty and not by publishers, must be part of any future scholarly publishing system.”

More information:

OA policies at other universities

Guide on Good Practices for University Open-Access Policies