E-Reading for the People of the Book: How Jews will Adapt to the Digital Revolution

Print vs. Electronic, the ongoing debate (CC image by Mobil Yazilar)
Print vs. Electronic, the ongoing debate (CC image by Mobil Yazilar)

This post was contributed by Dr. Henry Abramson, Dean of the Avenue J Campus of Touro College:

We are living in a Gutenberg moment, plunging wildly into an unprecedented age of transformation whose dark contours obscure the uncertain future. The Information Revolution dwarfs the 18th century Industrial Revolution, which was really great at making things bigger and faster: airplanes travel faster than horses, microwaves cook faster than campfires, but they are still all about visiting relatives or making dinner. Our digital technology, by contrast, thrusts us into change that is radically new. Facebook, for example, evolved out of the idea of a printed student phone book, using the online format to easily expand and update its content. Now, twelve years after it was first launched by students at Harvard, is it anything like a phone book? Even more, is it anything like anything? And for those born after 1995: what’s a phone book? Continue reading

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November is a month to celebrate authorship

photo-1429051781835-9f2c0a9df6e4November 1st was National Author’s day. Officially adopted by the Department of Commerce in 1949, the idea for the day originated with teacher and avid reader Nellie Verne Burt McPherson, but its observance was popularized by McPherson’s granddaughter, Sue Cole, after McPherson’s passing in 1968. Cole urged people to write a note to their favorite author on the 1st to “brighten up the sometimes lonely business of being a writer.”1 These days you’re probably more likely to tweet an author you admire (official hashtag: #NationalAuthorsDay), but showing your appreciation is still encouraged. Continue reading

Altmetrics and You

(CC image via Flickr user AJC1)
(CC image via Flickr user AJC1)

Have you ever read a really interesting article in a journal like Nature and then shared it on Facebook?  Or participated in discussions of a research article on one of your favorite blogs? Retweeted the link to the latest study about whether coffee is good for you or not on Twitter? Then you may have been involved in building altmetrics for these papers! Continue reading