Monday, March 9, 2009

State Records New South Wales on Youtube

Alan Ventress has let me know that the State Records latest contribution to You Tube is a 10 minute video devoted to family history at State Records.

It can be viewed at

Their video on the history of the Sydney Harbour Bridge has had over 2000 hits

Well done State Records New South Wales!

Open Library Environment

Carmel McInerny of the National Library of Australia gave a very interesting talk on “The Open Library Environment (OLE) Project” and other open source initiatives at the National Library on Thursday 5 March. She described the change in the National Librarys (NLA) approach from tendering for the market to provide a solution to use of open source software.

She is the NLA representative on the OLE project which is a Mellon funding project to seek an open source library management system for large libraries (as opposed to small library solutions such as Koha or Evergreen). She quoted Eric Lease Morgan: “Library catalogues need to provide an increased number of services against content not just services against the index”. Referring to the implementation of an approach based on service oriented architecture and business profess mapping she noted that while OLE was at an early stage planning design documents, the benefits would be tremendous.

The advantages of collaboration mean that the models can be carefully thought out and designed. She also talked about using RefTracker and other tool kits (open source and off the shelf) to manage original material acquisitions, the NLA implementation of VU-find for catalogue access (with relevance ranking and facets), Internet Archive „flipbed‟ software for page turning and word searching for digitised printed materials and a project she is leading called GETWISE – gain efficiencies through workflow investigation and system exploration. It was a terrific presentation, providing much food for though for both digital solutions and workflow analysis (business process mapping).

A very interesting and informative presentaiton!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Read books online or via your mobile device in installments

Daylit is a terrific service that give readers access to around 1000 books either to read online chapter by chapter or to receive in installments.

Thank you Karna for alerting me to the service!

It has many titles across a wide range of genres and years - ranging through Tom Peters management books, science fiction (Wells, Norton, William Rice Burroughs), the classics (Austen, Shakespeare), books that are fun reads (Berlitz Hide This French Book for Lovers - 2 installments are free) and serious reading (such as Best of Technology Writing 2007)

The web site notes: "We created DailyLit because we spent hours each day on email but could not find the time to read a book. Now the books come to us by email. Problem solved...We got the idea for DailyLit after the New York Times serialized a few classic works in special supplements a few summers ago. We wound up reading books that we had always meant to simply by virtue of making them part of our daily routine of reading the newspaper. The only thing we do more consistently than read the paper is read email. Bingo! We put together a first version and began reading "War of the Worlds" and "Pride and Prejudice". We showed it to friends, added more books and features at their request, and presto, DailyLit was born."

It is easy to use:

"DailyLit sends books in installments via e-mail or RSS feed. We currently offer over 1000 classic and contemporary books available entirely for free or on a Pay-Per-Read basis (with sample installments available for free). You can read your installments wherever you receive e-mail/RSS feeds, including on your Blackberry and iPhone. Installments arrive in your Inbox according to the schedule you set (e.g. 7:00am every weekday). You can read each installment in under 5 minutes (most folks finish in 2-3 minutes), and, if you have more time to read, you can receive additional installments immediately on demand. Our titles include bestselling and award winning titles, from literary fiction and romance to language learning and science fiction. DailyLit features forums where you can discuss your favorite books and authors. We also have a gift service, where you can send books via DailyLit to friends, with installments starting on any date you choose (even that very day - perfect for last minute gifts), and each installment comes with a personalized message written by you."

Definitely worth a serious look..