CityLab: Should Libraries Be the Keepers of Their Cities’ Public Data?. “In recent years, dozens of U.S. cities have released pools of public data. It’s an effort to improve transparency and drive innovation, and done well, it can succeed at both: Governments, nonprofits, and app developers alike have eagerly gobbled up that data, hoping to improve everything from road conditions to air quality to food delivery. But what often gets lost in the conversation is the idea of how public data should be collected, managed, and disseminated so that it serves everyone—rather than just a few residents—and so that people’s privacy and data rights are protected. That’s where librarians come in.”
Library of Congress: Library Receives Major Grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “The Library of Congress announced today that it has received a $540,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to evaluate the physical health of the national collection of books in American research libraries and to guide their archive retention and preservation decisions. Since there currently is no objective formula to assess the condition of millions of books in the custody of the nation’s libraries, this scientific study will help inform best practices and provide a baseline for libraries to analyze their print collections based on established scientific guidelines. “
Times of India: Tomes gather dust: Nizam’s collection, too, left to decay . “Nothing much is right with the State Central Library, the apex library of the state. At the risk of being destroyed are rare books from the Nizam’s personal collection that lay strewn on the floor. Some are tied by strings with insects eating away at them. While a few have been stacked inside broken almirahs [basically a cabinet], covered with years of dust.”
Google Blog: Grow with Google is heading to libraries in all 50 states, starting today. “For many people in cities and towns across America, the public library is the central place to access information, search for a job or even learn about running a small business. And librarians aren’t just checking out books to patrons—they’re providing key digital resources for their communities. At the end of last year we announced our plans to bring Grow with Google to more local communities by teaming up with libraries in all 50 states across the country to help ensure that economic opportunity exists for everyone, everywhere.”
GeekWire: Interview: NYPL’s chief digital officer says public is better off when libraries are ‘risk averse’ about tech. “First: It’s not just about digitizing books. That’s the biggest misconception that the public has about the role of digital technology in libraries, according to the chief digital officer of what is arguably the world’s largest public library.”
RTE: Chester Beatty makes rare artefacts available to view online. “The Chester Beatty in Dublin has launched a new website offering online access to thousands of rare books, manuscripts and decorative arts. High resolution images have been taken of 2,000 of the fragile items, which were left to the State by collector Alfred Chester Beatty in 1968.” The Chester Beatty is a library/museum and sounds like a great visit; the Web site is https://chesterbeatty.ie/ .
Google Blog: Grow with Google is coming to a library near you. “To support the amazing work of libraries throughout the country, Google and the American Library Association are launching the Libraries Ready to Code website, an online resource for libraries to teach coding and computational thinking to youth. Since we kicked off this collaboration last June, thirty libraries across the U.S. have piloted programs and contributed best practices for a ‘by libraries, for libraries’ hub. Now, the 120,000 libraries across the country can choose the most relevant programs for their communities.”