Thursday, January 25, 2007

Searching for the BEST Sites

Last Friday I made a link to the American Library Association-Reference and User Services Association Best Free Reference Web Sites. An enterprising librarian named Bill Drew has created a "Google Custom Search Engine" to assist you in focusing on the best information from these hand-picked websites for your particular need. A great time saver when looking for reliable results. Type a name, or history, or a quotation and see what happens. Who needs a million Google return when you can search within the best of the best. Make this a favorite/bookmark.
http://www.google.com/coop/cse?cx=012681041057676717069%3Alxoys7hon_y

If you want to know more about the existence of other GCSEs, how to find them and how to make them, then read this article from Research Buzz, the list that alerts me to lots of good stuff.

BTW, I had to teach a library session for a computer science class last night so I updated the webpage Amy Prendergast has been using. If you need CS info you might want to look at this page. Research Methodologies CIS 518 js

Friday, January 19, 2007

Best Free Reference Sites & Weekend Project

OK, you must bookmark this site. It's the reference librarians' list of the best websites for reference type information.
Best Reference Sites of 1999-2006

And for your weekend activity:
http://members.cox.net/crandall11/money/shirt/

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Procrastination Central

"Anyone can do any amount of work providing it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment." Robert Benchley [Like me right now]

It's early in the semester. You are starting to understand how much work you are going to have to do to make it through. This is a resource you should try. Take the assessment and see what you can do to get over the stalling and JUST DO IT!

Procrastination Central gives you:
* A formal definition of procrastination
* A list of scholarly articles, theses, and books
* A historical analysis
* Theories, treatments, and case studies

Finally, we are in the process of conducting new research. If you would like to have your own procrastination assessed, please click here or on the procrastination link under Online Studies on your left. You will get a formal assessment of your procrastination as well as some suggestions about what you can do to reduce your delaying.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Scholarpedia

Here's another attempt to create a reliable source of information with "experts" supplying the information. Volunteer if you are an expert. http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Main_Page

Friday, January 12, 2007

Stumbleupon

For your weekend's entertainment try this site. You do have to sign up, but I can guarantee that it is worth it. You can install a link on your menu bar and customize the kinds of websites you are interested in. Do "humor" for sure, because there are some hysterical websites indexed by this group. As you click Stumbleupon you can "thumbs up" or "thumbs down" to rate the sites and the program learns your idiosyncratic sense of humor--or bizarre sense, as mine is. So far I have not been disappointed in the bizarre-ness of websites indexed. It is a great place to take a short break from your work. Short--right!
JS

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Skepticism--A Library Virtue


The Public Library of Science has just published a study on the objectivity of "sponsored" research: "Relationship Between Funding Source and Conclusion Among Nutrition-Related Scientific Articles."
  • Much of the money available for doing medical research comes from companies, as opposed to government agencies or charities. There is some evidence that when a research study is sponsored by an organization that has a financial interest in the outcome, the study is more likely to produce results that favor the funder (this is called “sponsorship bias”). This phenomenon is worrying, because if our knowledge about effectiveness and safety of medicines is based on biased findings, patients could suffer. However, it is not clear whether sponsorship bias extends beyond research into drugs, but also affects other types of research that is in the public interest. For example, research into the health benefits, or otherwise, of different types of food and drink may affect government guidelines, regulations, and the behavior patterns of members of the public. Were sponsorship bias also to exist in this area of research, the health of the wider public could be affected.
Resolve this year to evaluate all information, whether it is a simple webpage or supposedly objective scientific research. Evaluate our own opinions too, as we are always tempted to choose that which will benefit us, rather than that which is true.


Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Excellent Career Choice

Looking for a career? Judy Burnham of the Biomed Library sent this article from US News & World Report. http://www.usnews.com/usnews/biztech/articles/061218/18librarian.summary.htm

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

We're back!

Ah! All my emails of last year have been archived. My files are cleaned up. My office is stripped in preparation for moving--if we should ever fill the new Instruction/Technology/Reference Librarian. And I'm ready to begin afresh. If you haven't noticed, the SOUTHcat library catalog has been updated so it is time for all of us to relearn how it works. But let's start the year with some Librarian New Year's kind of websites.

Kathy Jones sent me this website: Earth Calendar
http://www.earthcalendar.net/index.php"The Earth Calendar is a daybook of holidays and celebrations around the world. For the purpose of this web site a 'holiday' is any day that
recognizes a cultural event." By date, country or religion and the phases of the moon.

Now you need a calendar to on which mark up your holidays. Voila! Google Calendar is an online calendar you can maintain and share with your family, friends and work colleagues. Take a tour, then sign in to gmail or register for an account at: http://www.google.com/intl/en/googlecalendar/tour.html.

"I wasted time, and now doth time waste me."- Shakespeare, King Richard II, Act V, Scene V
And a website with tips to help motivate you to get organized this year:
I Need More Time / The Time Manager http://www.ineedmoretime.com/ The site will try to sell you books on organization, but there are a lot of free tips also.

And last, what words NOT to use this year:
The 2007 list from Lake Superior State University of words that you should avoid in the New Year. List of Banished Words. http://www.lssu.edu/banished/current.php