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Weekly News Digest

September 24, 2007 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

CLICK HERE to view more Weekly News Digest items.

Nominations Open for AIIP Technology Award

The Association of Independent Information Professionals (AIIP; www.aiip.org) announced that nominations are now open for the 2007 AIIP Technology Award. The deadline for nominations is Sept. 28. The award will be presented to the winners at Information Today, Inc.’s Internet Librarian conference (www.infotoday.com/il2007) on Monday, Oct. 29, 2007, in Monterey, Calif.

Members and nonmembers alike are welcome to nominate any company or individual that produces information products (databases, Web organizers, Internet sites) as an entry in the competition via a short and simple nominations form found online at www.aiip.org/AIIP_Tech_Award_Nomination_2007.doc.

There are two categories: one for Web-based services and another for desktop software. Successful entries in each category will be new or revamped products or technologies that help information professionals with their day-to-day operations in locating, analyzing, and organizing information. The product must be related to the information field; AIIP does not consider accounting, word-processing, database, spreadsheet, or other programs not directly related to locating, analyzing, or organizing data appropriate for this award.

Source: Association of Independent Information Professionals

New Digital Preservation and Access Task Force Formed

The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation are funding a blue-ribbon task force to address the issue of economic sustainability for digital preservation and persistent access. The Blue Ribbon Task Force on Sustainable Digital Preservation and Access will also include support by the Library of Congress, the National Archives and Records Administration, the Council on Library and Information Resources, and the Joint Information Systems Committee of the United Kingdom.

The task force will be co-chaired by Fran Berman, director of the San Diego Supercomputer Center at University of California–San Diego (www.sdsc.edu/index.html) and a pioneer in data cyberinfrastructure, and Brian Lavoie, an economist with strong interests in data preservation and research scientist with OCLC Programs and Research, OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc. (www.oclc.org). They will convene an international group of prominent leaders to develop actionable recommendations on economic sustainability of digital information for the science and engineering, cultural heritage, public and private sectors. The task force is expected to meet over the next 2 years and to gather testimony from a broad set of thought leaders in preparation for the task force’s final report.

In its final report, the task force is charged with developing a comprehensive analysis of current issues and actionable recommendations for the future to catalyze the development of sustainable resource strategies for the reliable preservation of digital information. During its tenure, the task force also will produce a series of articles about the challenges and opportunities of digital information preservation, for both the scholarly community and the public.

Source: OCLC

Schlager Group to Publish Historical Reference Set

Schlager Group (www.schlagergroup.com), an editorial services company that provides a behind-the-scenes service for reference publishers (such as Gale and Charles Scribner’s Sons), is launching its own multiformat reference imprint with a new series based on primary source documents. Milestone Documents in American History will be published in a four-volume print set, along with digital components, in April 2008. The new set is designed to explore the nation’s most important documents and to analyze their historical impact. Schlager claims it is one of the first reference works to place primary sources in the starring role.

Milestone Documents in American History combines primary source material with extensive analysis by acclaimed historians and, in the process, gives students a new option for using these sources to understand history. For example, students will find the full text of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Pearl Harbor speech along with a detailed overview by the historian Carl Rollyson (Baruch College, City University of New York) that explores the key facets of the speech, including its historical context, intended audience, and essential quotes. Further, Rollyson offers a paragraph-by-paragraph analysis of the text, providing students with the immediacy and emotion of 1941. Additional elements include study questions, a timeline, glossary terms, photographs, and illustrations.

Paul Finkelman, a legal historian and the President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law and Public Policy at Albany Law School, will serve as executive editor. Finkelman, in turn, has gathered a team of more than 75 historians and scholars to write for the set.

A companion set—Milestone Documents of American Leaders—will follow in 2009, and subsequent titles will extend the series into world history. All titles in the series will be suitable for high school and lower undergraduate college students.

Source: Schlager Group

MetaCarta Announces Geographic Alerts Service for Online Publishers

MetaCarta, Inc. (www.metacarta.com), a provider of geographic information retrieval and search solutions, announced the MetaCarta Local Alerts Service for Publishers. Local Alerts inform people about news stories, classified ads, community events, restaurant reviews, and even social media, related to their favorite city, town, or neighborhood. Online publishers can now deliver geo-targeted content to users regardless of where they live, work, or play.

Features of Local Alerts for publishers include the following:

  • Personalized geo-targeted content delivery—Site visitors can receive personalized content that discusses the places and locations they designate as important.
  • Automatic geographic data extraction—Local Alerts identifies the places mentioned in unstructured content in real time, making it easy to deliver it to specific users.
  • Registration-based service—Local alerts is a registration-based service that enables a one-to-one relationship with users.
  • Flexible implementation—The solution comes with a registration-based system or easily integrates to existing registration and email systems.
  • Outsourced solution—Software-as-a-service (SaaS) model offers rapid implementation and on-demand scalability.

With MetaCarta, you can ask for information about the Middle East, Western Europe, and central Africa and not have to type in all the country names in which you are interested. Or you can ask for information about New York City, and MetaCarta will also find information mentioning the Bronx, Brooklyn, or Queens even though the specific term New York City is not mentioned.

MySanAntonio.com is the first organization to offer this free service to its readers. MySanAntonio.com is a partnership between the San Antonio Express-News, a Hearst Corp. newspaper, and KENS 5, a CBS affiliate.

Source:MetaCarta, Inc.



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