Total Eclipse of the Sun

Solar Eclipse (CC0 image via Pixabay)

 

It’s the end of the world! Actually no, it’s just a solar eclipse, but not just any solar eclipse: a total solar eclipse. A total solar eclipse will pass over the United States on Monday, August 21st. For a brief amount of time, around 2.5 minutes, the moon will block out the sun, the brightest stars and planets will be visible, and animals and insects will believe it is nighttime. One of the more spectacular features of a total eclipse is being able to view the corona (outer ring caused by its atmosphere) of the sun for a brief period. It is a sight to be seen. Continue reading

Sometimes You Can Judge a Book by Its Cover

“Covers” by Henning M. Lederer on Vimeo

Way back in 2009, an observant blogger from the New York Observer noticed a “new trend” among booksellers. Rather than wrapping books in colorful paper dust jackets, some books incorporated the art directly onto their covers. It must have been quite an observation, since other bloggers repeated or quickly replicated the original blog. I can’t say I noticed at the time, so here is my contribution to the conversation, a mere eight years later. Continue reading

A swallow visits the LCW library: What we can learn “from the birds”

LCW gets an unexpected visitor

The other day at Lander College for Women, a bird flew into the building. We were advised to close the door of the library to prevent the bird from flying in during the window of time it took to catch and release the bird into freedom. We did not want our visitor, the bird dubbed Larry, to build a nest in our books! The excitement of the “bird alert” reminded me of the important metaphor that birds serve in various texts. Continue reading

The Sky’s the Limit! Association of Jewish Libraries Annual Conference

On June 19, 20, and 21, the Association of Jewish Libraries held its annual conference. The Association of Jewish Libraries has chapters all over the world, ranging from all regions of the United States to Europe, the U.K., and Israel. The annual conference is a chance for Judaica Librarians from all these chapters to assemble and exchange information about the dynamic field of Judaica Librarianship, from Hebrew day school libraries and university libraries to synagogue libraries. Continue reading

Ice Cream Social: Facts for National Ice Cream Month

(CC0 image via Pexels)

Being that it is summer I figured I would write a lighthearted blog on a lighthearted topic – Ice Cream.

July is National Ice Cream Month. Yes – National Ice Cream Month (and National Ice Cream Day) are officially recognized holidays designated in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan after receiving a joint resolution from Congress on the matter. It seems that even Congress can agree on their love for this sweet treat. Continue reading

Staff Profiles: An Interview with Nino Rtskhiladze

Library Assistant Nino

My name is Nino Rtskhiladze (Tski-lad-ze), and I am the Library Assistant at Touro College Borough Park 45.

I was born in Georgia, and I live in New York with my family: My spouse and three teenage kids. I speak Georgian, Russian and English languages.

I graduated from Tbilisi State University in Georgia, where I got my BA in Oriental Studies. I also earned my MBA at GAU (Georgian American University).

I have worked at Touro college since February 27, 2017, and I really enjoy my job.

When I’m not working, I love to travel, read books, watch movies and spend time with my family. I love cooking and baking, but still, my favorite food is sushi. I love to play piano, and I also have a music education.

The latest thing I’ve read is An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser, but my favorite books since my earlier ages are Eugene Onegin by Alexander Pushkin, Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.

I always try to find positive sides even in the negative things, and I want to say to everyone: Never give up, and smile: life is beautiful!

4th of July Weekend

Flag in a 3D-printed holder, created at our Bay Shore Library

Happy Independence Day from Touro Libraries!

Though library locations will be open on Monday, if you’re looking to get a jump start on the holiday celebrations, know that John Adams would have had your back. He insisted that July 2nd (the day the first of the signers affixed their names to the Declaration) was the proper anniversary. For this and more trivia to share around the barbecue or at the beach this weekend, look back on our 5 Independence Day Facts post.

Touro Libraries will be closed on Tuesday July 4th. Have a safe and happy holiday!

Find Free Scholarly Research with Open Access Repositories

Here at Touro, like most colleges and universities, our students and faculty rely on peer-reviewed, scholarly journal articles to conduct their research. Touro Library subscribes to a large number of scholarly journals which can be accessed through our many databases. We think we’ve got things pretty well covered, but still, we are working on expanding our reach and offering the best access to peer-reviewed scholarly literature we possibly can. One area we are looking for this is in Open Access (OA). OA refers to material that is published online, for free, without most copyright and licensing restrictions. Much of it is published under a Creative Commons license. It is important to note that OA material is published with the full consent of the copyright holder, not pirated in any way. Scholarly journal publishing has never been a money-making endeavor for the writers so they are not giving up any kind of financial benefits by publishing OA. For more information on the various business models used by OA journals, and anything else you might want to know about OA, see Peter Suber’s excellent Open Access Overview.       Continue reading

One Librarian, One Reference

Wikipedian Lane Rasberry presents some background on Wikipedia

On June 7th, 2017, Touro College librarians gathered at the Midtown campus for a Wikipedia editing event facilitated by Lane Rasberry, Wikipedian-in-Residence at Consumer Reports. Lane has visited the Touro Campus several times before for student events, but this was the first time that our librarians would be loosed on Wikipedia’s entries. If you thought Wikipedia and librarians (always carrying on about scholarly sources this and databases that) don’t mix, you’d be surprised! The model Wikipedia article is based on authoritative, often scholarly, information sources, and each fact included in an entry should be supported with an appropriate citation. In fact, the criteria for becoming a “Featured Article” on Wikipedia sound a lot like a good literature review: well-written, comprehensive, well-researched, and neutral.

Read on to hear about Touro librarians’ experiences editing Wikipedia in their own words: Continue reading

Flag Day: The Anniversary of the Stars & Stripes

(CC0 image via Pixabay)

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Each year, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14th. It started with a teacher, BJ Cigrand, in 1885. He encouraged his students to observe the anniversary of the adoption of the first official flag of the United States on June 14, 1777. At that time, the flag sported only 38 stars (compared to 50 today), after Colorado joined the Union in 1876, along with the 13 horizontal stripes representing the original 13 Colonies.

flags
The flag on display at Bay Shore library

Cigrand spread the idea through his writing and speeches on patriotism and the flag. Over time the ceremonies grew across the United States. After three decades of acknowledging “Flag Day”, President Woodrow Wilson wrote a Proclamation on May 30th, 1916 for the official observation of the anniversary of the Flag Resolution of 1777. To further recognize the history of the flag, an Act of Congress on August 3rd, 1949 signed by President Truman officially made June 14th of each year National Flag Day.

Citizens, businesses and organizations are encouraged to observe Flag Day by hanging a flag throughout the week of June 14th.

Contributed by: Joan Wagner, Chief Librarian, Bay Shore

Streufert, Duane. “Usflag.Org: A Website Dedicated To The Flag Of The United States Of America – The History Of Flag Day”. Usflag.org. N.p., 2017. Web. 13 June 2017.