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In January 2010, the LII Newsletter was renamed
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Topics we covered this week include caffeine, patent medicine trading cards, environmentally-sound painting, Thailand, plants, photos, space tourism, and a collection of patent-medicine trading cards with marvelously unsound advice. Some content underwritten by California Digital Library. Bon appetit from librarians Karen, Wendy, Pat, Jennifer, Maria, Charlotte, and Tom.
Tip of the Week
We rolled out our new search engine this Tuesday, and even if you aren't a regular denizen of our website, give it a try. The Siderean software we're now using pulls together "search" and "browse" very nicely. Go forth and enjoy. Use our feedback function to tell us what you think.
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Inventions of Note: Sheet Music Collection
"This sheet music collection consists of popular songs and piano compositions that portray technologies (old and new alike) as revealed through song texts and/or cover art." Technologies include automobile, airplane, radio, and telephone, and most items date from 1890-1920. A small number of entries include sound files (such as "Kissing Papa through the Telephone"). Browsable by title. From the Lewis Music Library, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22641
UnderCover: Artists' Sketchbooks
Companion to an exhibit that "focuses on ten sketchbooks. Every page is reproduced -- front and back (recto and verso) -- and can be seen all together or sequentially." Also includes brief background for artists including Edward Burne-Jones, Jacques-Louis David, Jean-Honoré Fragonard, George Grosz, and John Singer Sargent. From the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22644
WatercolorPainting.com: Learning Center
Collection of watercolor painting reference articles, covering topics such as choosing watercolor materials (brushes, paints and pigments, palettes, and paper), matting and framing, stretching paper, and color theory. Includes tool and color preferences of some professional watercolorists. From an artist who "has worked with watercolors for over 30 years and has won many local, regional and national awards."
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22658
"Yotophoto is a search engine for free-to-use stock photographs ... " It indexes "various sources of free imagery on the web including Flickr, Wikipedia, Stock.Xchng, Morguefile, Pixelperfect Digital and OpenPhoto." It only indexes photographs. "Other image types like maps, graphics, illustrations, 3D renderings, charts and the like are not indexed at this time." Browsable by tag, or searchable by word and by color of image.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22636
How Space Tourism Works
This site introduces the space tourism industry, citing its first tourist adventurers, along with the training and costs involved. It includes summaries of several commercial space travel projects and ideas, including space stations for corporate communities and a national contest to develop reusable launch vehicles for transporting the public into space. From How Stuff Works.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22646
Patent Medicine Trade Cards
Website for an ongoing effort to digitize a collection of 19th century "small, colorfully illustrated advertising cards touting a particular medicine and its many cures. The illustrations often have little to do with any of the ailments purported to be cured. They were pure advertising and very collectible." Searchable by keyword, such as "oil, extract, tonic, disease, ache, consumption, ague, dyspepsia, kidney, liver, heart, bowels, [and] appetite." From the University of California, Los Angeles, Library.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22632
This website provides "a database of congressional staff salaries." Searchable, or browse by last name, state, representative or senator, or U.S. Senate and House of Representative committee, leadership office, or administrative office. Staff listings include start and end dates for positions, titles, and salaries. Also includes a foreign gifts database. Data is obtained from official government records. From a sister group to a company "supplying a wide range of technical, policy and strategy papers."
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22649
United States Senate Office of Public Records [Lobby Filing Disclosure Program]
"In accordance with the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 the Secretary of the Senate has initiated this program to allow the public to view filings received by the Office of Public Records." View digitized images of lobby reports by name (registrant, client, lobbyist), client country or state, filing year (1998-present), and other criteria. Includes instructions for using the program. From the U.S. Senate.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22647
Caffeine Content of Common Beverages
Quick reference to caffeine content of selected beverages, including coffee, tea, soft drinks, and energy drinks. Provides a brief introduction to caffeine, "a substance that exists naturally in certain plants. ... It can also be produced synthetically and added to foods and beverages." From the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22663
Detoxify Your Studio
Tips from an artist for less-toxic painting, including ideas for effectively using acrylic paint (in place of oil paints) and for creating a healthy workspace. Discusses cleaning, ventilation, and artist materials. Part of a collection of how-to articles for artists and musicians, from a nonprofit arts organization.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22659
This September 2006 article provides brief suggestions, including buying spinach from a small local farm and using frozen spinach, for those who "want to eat spinach but are worried about recent reports of E. coli contamination." Accompanied by several recipes using frozen spinach, such as spinach and crab enchiladas and tamale tarts. From the website for Sunset magazine.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22667
The Library of Congress: Hispanic Reading Room
Collection of research materials for "the geographical areas [and cultures] of the Caribbean, Latin America, and Iberia ... and peoples throughout the world historically influenced by Luso-Hispanic heritage, including Latinos in the U.S., and peoples of Portuguese or Spanish heritage in Africa, Asia, and Oceania." Features exhibits and photo collections, genealogy resources, bibliographies and finding aids, and more. Some material available in Spanish and Portuguese. From the Library of Congress.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22655
Let's Party: A Guide to Drug-free Parties for 5th-8th Graders
"This website is a resource for parents to help their fifth through eighth grade children as they begin to host and attend parties." Provides suggestions for parents for party planning, rules, invitations, curfews, and more. Includes party game and food ideas. Also available in Spanish. From the University of Illinois Extension.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22668
Consortium of California Herbaria
A database of hundreds of thousands of records of "California vascular plant specimens that are housed in herbaria throughout the state." Searchable by scientific name, county, source, collection date, and other factors. Many of the records link to a corresponding map. Participants include selected University of California campuses, the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, and the San Diego Natural History Museum. From the University and Jepson Herbaria, University of California, Berkeley.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22483
Education: Art Hazards
Guidelines for the safe use of art and craft supplies in accordance with the California Education Code, which "prohibits schools from ordering or purchasing any product that contains toxic or carcinogenic substances for use in grades K-6." Includes general guidance (such as avoiding inhalation hazards and solvent-based products) and a detailed list of prohibited products. From the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA).
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22660
Brain Injury Association of Washington
Publications and resources from this Washington state organization that provides education, information, and advocacy for survivors of brain injuries and their families. Features a brain injury fact sheet, prevention tips, events calendar, a list of support groups in the state, links to other resources (including rehabilitation centers in Washington), and related material.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22500
Learning Each Other's Languages: L.V. McWhorter and the Columbia Plateau Tribes
Companion to a 2005-2006 exhibition with the theme of "[tribal historian and author] Lucullus Virgil McWhorter's role as a cultural mediator between Anglo Americans and the native peoples of the Columbia Plateau." Includes exhibit panels, photos of the exhibit, and a downloadable exhibit guide. The exhibit was curated by graduate students. From Washington State University Libraries.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22438
Shaping Youth, Sustaining Life: The Civilian Conservation Corps in the Northwest
This 2004 audio presentation recounts the story "of men who either worked in CCC [Civilian Conservation Corps] camps in the Pacific Northwest, or who worked in camps across the nation and now call the Pacific Northwest their home." During the Great Depression, the CCC "provided over 3 million young men the opportunity to combat poverty, hunger and economic adversity" by offering conservation work in forests and parks. From Whitworth College, Spokane, Washington state.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22497
Landscape Change Program
"The Landscape Change Program, at the University of Vermont, is a virtual collection of images that documents
200 years of Vermont's changing face" featuring "thousands of views of Vermont as it was and as it is." Browse using interactive maps, or search by year, keyword, and location. Also includes learning modules designed to look at a specific group of photos on topics such as the 1927 flood, lesson plans, a bibliography, and related material.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22643
U.S. Embassy in Thailand
Find background on U.S.-Thai relations and alerts about current situations affecting U.S. travelers from this website for the U.S. embassy in Thailand. Includes a list of U.S. government agencies in Thailand, press releases and transcripts of speeches, and economic reports and trade data.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22654
EPA Library Closings Continue Despite Protests
Summary of 2006 events related to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) budget cuts and library closings, including the announcement of the closure of the EPA Headquarters Library to walk-ins. Includes links to a related article and an activist organization's document on the EPA libraries. From the website of the American Library Association's American Libraries magazine.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22657
In Focus: Special Report: Lucy's Baby
September 2006 feature about the discovery in Ethiopia's Afar region of a skeleton of an Australopithecus afarensis child who lived 3.3 million years ago. Features background about the skeleton (found in the same area as area as "Lucy," another A. afarensis skeleton), an interactive graphic of this human ancestor, a photo gallery, and a podcast of an interview with the Lucy discoverer. From the website for Scientific American magazine.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22656
International Education Week (IEW)
IEW, which takes place in mid-November, is a "joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education ... to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences in the United States." The site features suggested IEW activities for students (such as participating in a Model UN), a list of IEW events, and related material.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22627
Women in World History: Sati
Learning module about sati, a concept originating in the Laws of Manu (India), which "declared that a Hindu widow ... was not to remarry, while a Hindu widower was permitted to marry again. Gradually, the word sati was used to designate the ritual of self-immolation or self-sacrifice by a Hindu widow on her husband's pyre." Provides readings, documents, teaching materials, and a brief bibliography. From the Center for History and New Media, George Mason University.
LII Item: http://lii.org/cs/lii/view/item/22662
Thanks for reading LII New This Week!
Jennifer English, Liaison to Califa Library Group
Wendy Hyman, Senior Editor
Maria Brandt, Associate Editor
Charlotte Bagby, Senior Weeder