Friday, July 30, 2010


Librarians involved with providing instruction for undergraduate courses know better than anyone that it can be a mistake to take students' skill-sets for granted.

A recent article from The Chronicle of Higher Education emphasizes this point in its discussion of how professors often do not explain fully enough the tasks demanded by the research process, leading to papers that " little more than meet formulaic standards."

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


An editor for the website, a site devoted to technical product reviews and software downloads, has composed a list of 10 reasons why physical books are superior to ebooks.

The Huffington Post has picked up the story

Monday, July 26, 2010


The Gospel Music History Archive at the University of Southern California works to "...preserve the legacy of gospel music in a state-of-the-art digital archive."

This website is one important part of the project's work. Visitors can view videos of gospel performers; view photo galleries; read material about the religious makeup of California; browse a calendar of events; and read the project's in-house publication, "The Wire."

The initiative supporting this project is part of the Center for Religion and Civic Culture at USC, which was created in 1996.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Turning your own print books into e-books – copyright infringement?

For more on the new invention that makes digitizing your own books possible, check out the latest updates to "In the News" on the library's Copyright subject page.

News stories, from an e-mail list created by Amy Mata at the Center for Intellectual Property (University of Maryland University College), are updated regularly.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


If you aren't aware that cupcakes are have been a hot trend in the confection market, I can only say that I'm sorry you've been missing out.

What is the relationship between cupcakes and libraries? We have NPR to thank for making that connection, and for its article of July 20 that describes with a mix of humor and earnestness the non-negotiable and steadfast value of libraries and librarians:

And if you're in Birmingham, check out Dreamcakes Cupcakes in Homewood--on your way home from one of the many excellent libraries in the Birmingham area (hint:

Monday, July 19, 2010


Southern Spaces is a peer-reviewed Internet publication and forum that "provides open access to essays, interviews and performances, events and conferences, gateways, timescapes, and annotated links about real and imagined spaces and places of the U.S. South." The journal is supported by the Robert W. Woodruff Library of Emory University.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

MedlinePlus: High-Quality Medical/Health Information

Many Internet users utilize the Internet to search for medical and health information. If you're one of those people, you know that the resources you find in an Internet search can range from outright quackery to credible, well-documented information provided by reliable experts. And you've probably wished that there were a way to limit your search to just the reliable information. Well, there is, and it’s been around for years.

Next time you’re searching for medical information on the web, try MedlinePlus at . Medline gathers medical information from only the most reputable sources. The director of the National Libraries of Medicine states:

“MedlinePlus has extensive information from the National Institutes of Health and other trusted sources on over 800 diseases and conditions. There are directories, a medical encyclopedia and a medical dictionary, easy-to-understand tutorials on common conditions, tests, and treatments, health information in Spanish, extensive information on prescription and nonprescription drugs, health information from the media, and links to thousands of clinical trials. MedlinePlus is updated daily and can be bookmarked at the URL: There is no advertising on this site, nor does MedlinePlus endorse any company or product.”

– Dr. Donald A. B. Lindberg

As always, if you have any questions about this resource, which is also linked from the University Library’s Medical and Health Sciences Page we’ll be happy to assist.

Thanks to Lori Northrup for providing the material for this posting

Monday, July 12, 2010


‎"What's in the daily news?
I'll tell you what's in the daily news."

(You get a gold star if you can name the musical in which those lyrics appear. Hint: Marlon Brando had a singing role in the movie version.)

What was in the New York Daily News on July 11 was an article about e-books: "Check it out or Click It Out from the New York Public Library."

And here's a relevant YouTube link for your listening pleasure, because musical theatre makes every day better:

Upside Down Mortgage?

Friday, July 9, 2010


With thanks to Paul Richardson, Professor of Music.

As you may know, Samford is hosting the annual conference of The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada from Sunday, July 11, through Thursday, July 15.

More than 200 visitors from across the continent will be on campus for workshops, addresses, reading sessions, and worship. While these sessions are limited to those registered, there will be five hymn festivals that are free and open both to you and to the public.

As you can see, the festivals for this year’s conference are unusually varied:

Sunday, July 11, 7:30 pm, Reid Chapel
“Free at Last: Spiritual Songs of Liberation”
Mary Louise Bringle, Andrew Donaldson, Deborah Carlton Loftis

Monday, July 12, 7:30 pm., Homewood High School
Sacred Harp Singing
David Ivey

Tuesday, July 13, 7:30 pm, Sixth Avenue Baptist Church
“Unsung Hymns by Black and Unknown Bards”
James Abbington

Wednesday, July 14, 7:30 pm, Reid Chapel
“Crazy in Alabama: Longing for Justice in Story and Song”
Kate Campbell

Thursday, July 15, 10:30 am, Reid Chapel
“What Does the Lord Require?”
Jacque Browning Jones, Adam M. L. Tice

You may recogznie some of the names among the festival leaders. Deb Loftis is a former Samford librarian who also taught adjunctively. Her husband John was director of the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission. Deb is the new Executive Director of The Hymn Society and visiting professor of church music at Baptist Theological Seminary in Richmond.

Kate Campbell is a Samford graduate who frequently collaborates with Wayne Flynt.

You may also be interested in attending a pre-conference event. Faythe Freese, associate professor of music at the University of Alabama, will present an organ recital in Hodges Chapel on Sunday, July 11, at 4:00 pm. This recital is being sponsored as a memorial to Gretchen Hartung Anderson, who graduated from the Ida V. Moffett School of Nursing in 1995, by the Hartung and Anderson families.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada is holding its annual conference here at Samford July 11-15. The conference theme is "Sing of Justice ~ Sing of Peace."

We invite you to stop by the library and view our display of rare and historic hymnals from the library's Special Collection.

To learn more about the Hymn Society and this year's conference, visit

Friday, July 2, 2010


After the recent series of posts focused on the difficulties surrounding e-books, I thought that our readers deserved some good news. Something exciting. Something that works. And something that is--free. To users at least.

Free audio books. It's true. LibriVox-- free audio books of materials that are in the public domian. Readings are provided by volunteer readers. Jane Austen, Jack London, Mark Twain, Saki, and many many other writers are available. Readings can be downloaded to your computer and burned to audio CD.

Click here to browse the entire catalog.
Click here to search by author or title.
To learn about how the creators of LibriVox make it all work, click here.

This is the Internet at its best. Happy 4th everyone!