briefs / higher ed / internet / libraries

What's interesting today

Mashable: Why Browsing Is So Important to Content Discovery
This is a great, well-written article on why browsing is such an important part of information discovery, and how we’re losing this as we rely more and more on search alone.

ALA: Top Ten Most Frequently Challenged Books of 2010
Banned Books Week is coming up (September 24-October 1). Here’s the Office of Intellectual Freedom’s list of most frequently challenged books last year. Always an interesting list, and I noticed that “And Tango Makes Three” has been number one or two since 2006. (It was released at the end of April 2005.) Anyway, take a look at the list and pick out one to read!

Swiss Army Librarian: Library Media Box and Other Vending Machines
What I think is cool about these vending machines that dispense library materials is that you can put them anywhere. I love seeing stories about things like this being placed in train stations, convenience stores, etc. I can’t quickly find it now, but I seem to also recall seeing a story in the last couple of years about some small lockers set up in a convenience store, which allowed people in a town with no library to place holds on materials in the library system that served their region, and they could pickup and drop off at these lockers. (From the 9/7 AL Direct.)

Library Journal: To Fix Higher Education, Start by Eliminating Tenure
Steven Bell poses three questions to Naomi Riley, author of The Faculty Lounges: and Other Reasons Why You Won’t Get the College Education You Paid For. The whole question of tenure and research vs. teaching is an important one. It seems that the focus is on faculty doing research, which is certainly part of what is driving the discussion about “is your fancy education really worth it if the professors listed in the admissions book teach one senior seminar a year.” The topic might not seem to impact libraries much, but Bell makes some important connections, which he asks Riley about.

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