Wednesday, February 28, 2007

By Local Standards

At the Main Library and around downtown, people are quite used to the work happening on the site of the future Santa Fe Civic Center. Santa Feans who don't come downtown very often are startled when they get to the corner where Sweeney Convention Center (and its previous incarnation, Santa Fe High School) used to be: by local standards, it's a really deep hole in the ground...
trucks at work at Sweeneytrucks at work at Sweeney

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Some Statistics

We've updated the Library Facts and Statistics page. One of Robert Heinlein's characters says, "A fact should be loved for itself alone," and we feel that way about our numbers. One of our favorite numbers this time around is this one:
Of our 323,000 items, more than 70,000 of them were donated to the library. 22% of the entire collection came from our users.
In the run-up to opening Southside Library, we needed to make a list of all the titles which only Southside owns. So then we collected some numbers about the rest of the system and discovered:
Of our 197,000 titles and 323,000 items,
  • Main has 151,538 items
        Main has 128,069 titles
           72,773 titles are only at Main
  • La Farge has 108,606 items
        La Farge has 94,942 titles
           40,355 titles are only at La Farge
  • Southside has 62,299 items
        Southside has 49,433 titles
           17,678 titles are only at Southside

Monday, February 26, 2007


   One of our readers pointed out we hadn't said lately where the Southside Library is. The address is 6599 Jaguar Drive. You enter the parking lot from Valentine Way, the street to the north of the purple marker on the map at right. The Yahoo satellite image shows our lot empty (the + in the middle of the frame). The neighborhood is quite new. Most maps were made before Jaguar was extended west, and don't show Jaguar crossing Country Club at all.

The grand opening is March 23rd. We hope to see you there.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Interlibrary Loan Department

You may not have noticed the Interlibrary Loan Department of the library. They work down in the basement of the Main Library, and their collection is by definition invisible (though vast): the 81,000,000 titles we don't have and which are available for us to borrow from 57,000 public and academic libraries throughout the country. Articles from periodicals and microfilm of reference materials are also available.

It's a reciprocal service, and we try to fill as many requests from other libraries for their patrons as we borrow for our own users—approximately 3600 books per year, lending and borrowing. This includes items from as far away as Alaska and Hawaii. Quite a few requests come to us for regional information, including books on building with adobe, Native American history, and xeriscape gardening. Some of the more interesting requests from our own patrons include oral histories of obscure folk artists from the Smithsonian's Archives of Art, books in French, German, and Polish, and non-fiction books on everything from building carousel horses to dancing the samba.

We can borrow almost anything for you. Thousands of new titles are added to the network every day (Watch Worldcat grow). "A fantastic service," says library patron and volunteer, Richard Graham, "imagine what it would cost if you had to pay for it!" Linda H., the interlibrary loan librarian, says, "If you have a library need that has not been met by the Santa Fe Public Library's collection, please check with the Reference Desk for assistance with Interlibrary Loan possibilities. Happy reading from your Interlibrary Loan Department."

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Special Interest in the Clovis People

This week's Science Magazine features (cover) the work of two researchers who have established a slightly later and much briefer span of time for Clovis culture, Redefining the Age of Clovis: Implications for the Peopling of the Americas. It's been all over the news (1)(2)(3).

They were named 'Clovis' because the first discovery and excavation of sites which yielded their characteristic and beautiful tools happened in the late 1920s and early 1930s here in New Mexico. Most archaeologists have believed since then that the Clovis people were the earliest human occupants of North America. But more recently, other workers in the field have been challenging the    view.

Books come out friequently—some of the ones we have are Elaine Dewar's Bones : discovering the first Americans; E. James Dixon's Bones, boats & bison : archeology and the first colonization of western North America; the book by the lead scientist who began excavating at Monte Verde in South America in 1977 and reset the settlement calendar, Tom Dillehay, The settlement of the Americas : a new prehistory; Paul S. Martin's latest salvo in his 40-year campaign to demonstrate both 'Clovis first' and that in less than 1000 years they had peopled the New World and wiped out the large ice-age mammals, Twilight of the mammoths : ice age extinctions and the rewilding of America—to keep us up to date on the latest thinking about the still contentious question of who were the earliest settlers in the New World.

PS. As of Saturday the physical February 23rd issue of Science had not yet arrived; and the electronic version is not yet available. Odds are the magazine will come early this week.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Manyholds - The Books You're Willing To Stand In Line For

Here is the top of the list of titles with the most holds on them at the moment: This is not much different from last month's list. Kiran Desai's book slowly accumulates more and more holds. The James Patterson fiction factory has two titles near the top, and a third below. But overall a fairly familiar list of titles. What doesn't appear in the list on the webpage, titles with only a handful of people waiting, is more like news: who would have imagined there are people standing in line for Conversational Brazilian Portuguese? These are titles our readers are just discovering, or a reading group has just picked them up, or, perhaps, nearly all the demand has been satisfied and after three or four more readers are satisfied it won't be on hold any more...
cover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of book
The current list is always available from the main page of the catalog (where it's called 'Current Popular Titles'), and from the About Books & Literature page.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Federal Issues Affecting Libraries

We received the following email from Geri Hutchins, Federal Programs Coordinator at the New Mexico State Library:

"Federal Issues Affecting Libraries"
"The provisions of the Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA) which got stuck in committee during the last Congress is part of a new bill introduced into the Senate. S.49 Protecting Children in the 21st Century Act. Look at Sections 203 and 204.

"States are now introducing similar own bills into state legislatures. While the Democrat-controlled Illinois General Assembly may not be too receptive to new social networking legislation proposed by freshman Republican Senator Matt Murphy, the bill may be the first in several state attempts to achieve the goals of the federal Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA), which passed the House of Representatives but failed in the Senate. The Social Networking Website Prohibition Act would require public libraries to prohibit access to social networking web sites, including MySpace and many less controversial, on all publicly accessible computers, including those used by adults, and also would prohibit access by students in schools.
Source: Library Journal, 2/20/2007

"E-Government and Libraries: Could New Law Be on the Horizon? An embryonic initiative may produce federal funds to help public libraries provide access to e-government. The library role in e-government was highlighted in a breakthrough report last year by researchers at Florida State University's Information Institute. A follow-up discussion draft report, E-Government and Public Libraries: Current Status, Meeting Report, Findings, and Next Steps, based in part on a December 2006 meeting involving a variety of library stakeholders, offers ideas and recommendations, notably a preliminary version of a new federal bill that would provide formal and fiscal support for public libraries' roles in disaster assistance and helping with online forms like taxes and Medicare. The report is available at
Source: Library Journal 2/20/2007"

Monday, February 19, 2007

The Next Big Shipment Is Tuesday

The stocking of the shelves at Southside Library is coming along.
reference books
The next big shipment is on Tuesday, an entire truckload of children's books. We are hoping to do a big push on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to get that truckload processed and shelved. If you are interested in volunteering, please call the Southside Library workroom at 955-2812, the La Farge Reference desk at 955-4862, or the library's administrative assistant Maria Finley at 955-6789, and leave your name and phone number.
'not checked in'
Southside will be staying open until 8 PM on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. Consider stopping by at the end of the day for a little convivial shelving... (Once it opens, Southside's hours will be 12-8 Monday, Tuesday and Thursday; 10-5 Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.)
problem solving

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Notices, Notices

We are about to begin sending overdue notices by telephone and email. The default setting is for telephone notification. If you do not want to hear from the telephone robot, you can change the setting yourself by logging into your record and clicking on the "Modify Personal Information" button. Or call the circulation desk at Main at 955-6785, or La Farge at 955-4865.

Saturday, February 17, 2007


Now that the Superbowl is over, Storytime at Children's is the place to be. That's right, it's time to get out of the house, away from the TV and bring your kids to Storytime. That's Wednesday at Main from 10:30-11:00. We'll be reading from a host of new books, including the story of Owen and Mzee, the giant tortoise and baby hippo who have been inseperable since the tsunami. We have lots of new books for all ages and interests and more to come.
Remember the funny shoes in the Art Gallery? Come see the artist, Bob Johnston, show off more of his work and hear a story or two. Come February 20th from 12-1 ish.
March 9th, join FAM JAM for a free preview class of music and movement. Space is limited so call 955-6783 to reserve a space for your preschoolers spot.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Read On Santa Fe!

   The City's Public Information Officer announces the Following:

Read On Santa Fe! Community Read
Schedule of Events
All of the city’s Community Read events are at the New Mexico Film Museum (formerly the Jean Cocteau Cinema)
Saturday, March 3 – Local Film Matinee
Screening of locally-produced films and documentaries about economic struggle. Tickets available beginning at 11:45 a.m. Tickets are free, though donations will be accepted to support the filmmakers and a local youth organization.
  • La Marcha: Working for Economic Justice (Showtime 12:50 p.m.) This is the story of the Santa Fe Living Wage Campaign, which emerged through the efforts of diverse community-based organizations to build a coalition that illustrates core U.S. values of teamwork, fairness, opportunity, responsibility and respect.
  • Gary and the Angels (Showtime 2 p.m., followed by Q&A with producer Margo Manaraze Wagner) is based on the life of Gallup resident Gary Murphy who struggles with his fetal alcohol syndrome disabilities, alcohol abuse, and homelessness.
  • Salt of the Earth (Showtime 3:30 p.m.) is based on an actual strike against the Empire Zinc Mine in New Mexico. The film deals with the prejudice against the Mexican-American workers, who struck to attain wage parity with Anglo workers in other mines and to be treated with dignity by their bosses.
  • Cinderellas of Santa Fe (Showtime 5:30 p.m., followed by Q&A with director Vanessa Vassar) is a documentary film that follows people who are highly educated and/or extremely creative and are recognized in their fields. But, they must still work as cleaning ladies, waitresses and bartenders in order to support their art, their children and their dreams.
  • American Waitress, new mexico (Showtime 7:40 p.m., followed by Q&A with director Vanessa Vassar and special guests) is a documentary feature film that examines the lives, attitudes, perceptions and experiences of waitresses. More than a film about waitresses, it is a film about life, social structures and human nature.
Tuesday, March 6 – Student and Youth Film Contest
6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Screening of short films by local youth and students on the topic of “getting by” in Santa Fe followed by a brief Q&A with the filmmakers. Winning student films will be hosted on after the showing. The deadline for submissions of films 5 minutes or less is Feb. 28. Call 955-6046 or 955-6629 for more information.

Thursday, March 8 – Panel Discussion
6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Reception from 8 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The Mayor and a panel of community members will discuss the complexities of poverty in Santa Fe in relation to the issues discussed in Barbara Ehrenreich’s book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America.

Sunday, March 11 – Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America
7 p.m. at the Lensic Performing Arts Center
*This is not a city-sponsored event*

Open On Presidents' Day

The libraries will keep their normal schedule on Presidents' Day, February 19th. Main and La Farge will be open 10 AM to 9PM.

But isn't it a legal holiday, you ask. Yes. The City follows the State employees holiday calendar. We work on this one, and get it back later on the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Last Hurrah of Harry P.

We just ordered 30 copies of J. K. Rowling's final Harry Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, ten for each library. It won't be out until July, but you can certainly place a hold on it now...
cover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of book

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Hundreds of Boxes...

Hundreds of boxes have already been unpacked, checked in, and shelved at Southside Library.

(Lots more to go.)

We still need lots of help. If you are interested in volunteering, please call the Southside Library workroom at 955-2812, the La Farge Reference desk at 955-4862, or the library's administrative assistant Maria Finley at 955-6789, and leave your name and phone number.

Immediately what we need is help with the enormous physical task of getting Southside's collection ready for the grand opening on March 23rd; but also, long-term, Southside will need help for on-going things like the bookstore, shelving, assistance with children’s programs, etc.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Peter Pan in Scarlet, and Other New TItles

We have just ordered the authorized Peter Pan sequel, Peter Pan in Scarlet. The author, Geraldine McCaughrean, was selected by Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, which holds J. M. Barrie's original copyright, to write this sequel. It will be interesting to see how well it works for those of us who have Peter Pan written deep in our childhood memories.

That's the top of the news from the Just Added to the Database list, but there are lots of other delicious titles. This time we left in a larger number of picture books in the list, for their engaging covers (e.g. Babies in the Bayou); and continue to try to exclude the inaccessible Southside Library items. There's a new biography of Charles Bukowski by Barry Miles; the 75th anniversary edition of The Joy of Cooking (!!!); new novels by James Houston and Matt Rees ; The Gum-Chewing Rattler, a new one from Joe Hayes (!!!) ; and hundreds more.

Most of the other What's New Lists, and the Large Print Titles list, have been updated also. They are always available from the top page of the catalog.

cover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of bookcover of book

Sunday, February 11, 2007

...And how do they do it, really?

One of our readers sent us a link to a book-scanning machine which claims to do 2400 pages per hour. Too bad we can't pull their animated .gif in here, but it's worth taking a look at.

This is probably NOT how Google is doing it—their technology is a proprietary secret— nor necessarily any of the other big scanning projects. But it does appear that the days of dissassembling (that is, destroying) a book in order to preserve its content may be past.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis

The IPCC report has been all over the news. Right now only the Summary for Policymakers is available; and it is heavy going, very technical (and full of bad news). The full report will come out in April.

The InterGovernmental Panel on Climate Change's own website is presently featuring the 2007 material; many news stories (1)(2)(3) give you some ideas about what it means.

As for what we might be able to do about it, for a fairly draconian description try James Kunstler's long blog entry, The Agenda Restated. We have a number of his books, including the 2005 title, The long emergency : surviving the converging catastrophes of the twenty-first century.

The bad news graphic comes from the NOAA page, Climate Impact of Quadrupling of CO2.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Volunteers for Southside

With the recent newspaper and radio coverage of the arrival of the collection to Southside Library (and thank you to Henry M. Lopez for the headline of a lifetime, Filling a Library's Soul), we have been alerting our users to the need for volunteers for Southside. Working in overdrive (watch them go!!), the Technical Services staff unpacked, checked in, and rough-sorted the first 300 boxes of materials on Tuesday and Wednesday. Other library staff and volunteers shelved most of those by Wednesday afternoon. But there's at least 1300 more boxes to get unpacked, etc.; and then they ALL have to be shelved.

If you are interested in volunteering please call the La Farge Reference desk at 955-4862, or the library's administrative assistant Maria Finley at 955-6789, and leave your name and phone number.

Immediately what we need is help with the enormous physical task of getting Southside's collection ready for the grand opening on March 23rd; but also, long-term, Southside will need help for on-going things like the bookstore, shelving, assistance with children’s programs, etc.

Thanks for thinking about working with us, and please ask your friends and family to help also, it would be appreciated.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Honk If You Love Tag Clouds

The librarians on the NGC4Lib (Next Generation Catalogs for Libraries) email list are still following the train of thought that tries to connect subject headings with the social networking classification mechanism of tagging. Shortly after Eric Lease Morgan posted about his experiment in loading subject headings from his catalog into , a librarian at Missouri Botanical Garden posted the result of his own similar experiment. And his makes a lovely tag cloud. Who could resist clicking on a big green "Early Works to 1800", just to see what they have?

A question on the Public Libraries email list about a suitable software for cataloging a church library brought the reply that many churches use LibraryThing, and made us wonder about what a church's tag cloud might look like. Here's Tempe Church of Christ's. Christ Redeemer Church. And First Baptist Church, Vallejo.

A little hunting around turns up lots of web sites with the power to make visual displays of their data (1)(2)(3)(4— this one also turns up in Martin Griffiths' fascinating paper, Talking Physics in the Social Web)—and of course the big guys, collecting the results of millions of individual decisions about what something is about: technorati, flickr, If only we had the skills and time to export our own catalog data into tag clouds; the subject headings for, say, the 500 most popular nonfiction books last year. Or to open the catalog to tagging, so you could tell us what our titles are about... well, that's why the NGC4Lib geeks play with this stuff.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

We Got Great Press Yesterday

   The New Mexican has a nice article including a video of the truck rolling down Jaguar. We're also on the front of the Journal North, but you can't get it online. Our own photos are on the webpage. Grand opening March 23. Yaay. We're on our way.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Eight Hundred Boxes

The first truckload of materials for the Southside Library arrived today

The Mayor rode in the co-pilot seat.

Kids along the way turned out to cheer

Mayor Coss and Councilor Dominguez helped

First Book Out of the First Box

Eight Hundred Boxes... and another truckload tomorrow at 9 AM

Lots more photographs
on the web page.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

New Date Due Slips

It's a small improvement but very pleasing. We now have receipt printers at the checkout desks. You get a slip that tells you what you checked out, and when they are due. A lot of people stick them up on the refrigerator...

Friday, February 02, 2007

The Web As An Unlimited Supply of Groovy Miscellany

This Week in Library BlogLand. It looks like we better subscribe to this one.

One of our readers sent us a New Yorker article by Jeffrey Toobin, Google's Moon Shot: The quest for the universal library about the legal state of Google's electronic book scanning project; and an article about The 100 Top Alternative Search Engines.

Once something comes up, you hear about it everywhere. There's a school district in West Virginia that wants to put Dance Dance Revolution (which we posted about on Monday) into every school to counteract obesity. (Thanks to Our Descent Into Madness for this cite.)

Lastly, one of our colleagues pointed out that Sweden is opening an embassy in the virtual world Second Life. No-o-o-o. Even for the opportunity to learn about yet another popular manifestation of social networking, I think I will not join the 3,147,284 presumably real people who are presently inhabitants of Second Life.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Book Sale This Weekend At La Farge

books on the sale tableThis weekend is the Friends of the Library's bargain book sale, at the La Farge Library, 1730 Llano Street. The hours are Saturday February 3rd, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and Sunday 1:00 to 4:00 PM.

Saturday all items have fixed prices:

Hardcover $1.00
Movie Videos $1.00
Paperbacks $.50 or 3/$1.00
Records & Childrens Books $.50
Cassettes, Videos & CDs $.50
Sunday is Bag Day. $2.50 per bag.