July 21, 2007
Stereotypes Negatively Affect Women's Academic Performance
A report from the National Academies, Beyond Bias and Barriers: Fulfilling the Potential of Women in Academic Science and Engineering, concludes that women are underrepresented at higher levels of science and engineering academics because of the influence of gender bias and the disadvantages that such bias generates. Both women's and men’s perceptions and evaluations of competence and performance are affected by these biases. They cause women to be consistently underrated and men to be consistently overrated.
Equally true for women in the legal academy? I think so. [JH]
Start-Ups Make Inroads With Google's Work Force
"As Google Inc. exploded into a company of more than 12,000 employees, attracting a million resumes a year, the Internet giant rarely lost staff to start-ups or had prospective workers turn down job offers. Now, though, Google's magnetic pull on top Silicon Valley talent is showing signs of weakening." [RJ]
July 20, 2007
Friday Fun: Librarian Blogger Sing-along
You don't have to hold a tune to sing along with the Laughing Librarian's Blogga song (by Brian Smith). [JH]
When 'Digital Natives' Go to the Library
"College and university librarians got some unconventional advice: Play more video games. At a packed session for academic librarians attending the annual meeting of the American Library Association, in Washington, the topic was how to help students who have learned many of their information gathering and analysis skills from video games apply that knowledge in the library. Speakers said that gaming skills are in many ways representative of a broader cultural divide between today’s college students and the librarians who hope to teach them." [RJ]
Fight Different: Politics 2.0
Interviews with Bloggers, Politicos, and Netizens on Politics 2.0 from Mother Jones. Check it out! [RJ]
- Refugees and Asylees: 2006. This report presents information on the number and characteristics of persons admitted as refugees or granted asylum to the United States in fiscal year 2006.
- Data on Refugees and Asylees. Access data on refugees and asylees admitted in fiscal year 2006 by several characteristics.
- Naturalizations: 2006. This report presents information on the number and characteristics of foreign nationals who became American citizens during fiscal year 2006.
- Data on Naturalizations. Access data on persons who became American citizens in fiscal year 2006 by country of birth, state of residence, and other characteristics.
- Legal Permanent Residents: 2006. This report presents information on the number and characteristics of persons who became legal permanent residents in the United States during fiscal year 2006.
- Data on Legal Permanent Residents. Access data on immigrants who became legal permanent residents in fiscal year 2006 by class of admission, country of birth, state of residence, and other characteristics. [RJ]
It's Not News, It's Fark
Drew Curtis, creator of the wildly successful website Fark, examines why mass media keeps churning out inane stories that look like news but are really nothing more than "fark." From Publisher's Weekly:
Curtis delivers [his critique] with richly sarcastic humor. A section on hysteria over unlikely disasters, for example, punctures alarmist stories with one-line synopses like "Oh my God, there's bacteria on everything." Other chapters explore fake news trends, such as "Equal Time for Nutjobs," which explains how 9/11 conspiracy theories manage to get public airing, or the proliferation of nonevents that are little more than publicity stunts. But the anger behind his criticisms of media companies for producing such nonsense is defused by the acknowledgment that readers actually want to be titillated.
List Price: $20.00
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Gotham; DIAF edition (May 31, 2007)
Corporate Welfare Enriches Big Business
"During fiscal year 2006, the federal government spent $92 billion on corporate welfare. In the policy analysis "The Corporate Welfare State: How the Federal Government Subsidizes U.S. Businesses," the Cato Institute's director of budget studies, Stephen Slivinski, finds that billions of dollars are annually spent to cushion America's largest companies at the taxpayers' expense.
Slivinski defines corporate welfare as "any federal spending program that provides payments or unique benefits and advantages to specific companies or industries," justified as remedies to market failure. Special interests argue that without subsidies, competition or an industry's viability would be jeopardized. However, Slivinski demonstrates that the "market failures on which the programs are predicated are either overblown or don't exist." Large corporations including Boeing, Xerox, Motorola, Dow Chemical and General Electric have received millions in taxpayer dollars while playing paupers to the federal government." [RJ]
July 19, 2007
Professional Reading: The Peloponnesian War and the Future of Reference, Cataloging, and Scholarship in Research Libraries
Thomas Mann has posted an interesting essay on the Library of Congress Professional Guild site. Here's the abstract:
"The paper is an examination of the overall principles and practices of both reference service and cataloging operations in the promotion of scholarly research, pointing out important differences not just in content available onsite and offsite, but also among necessary search techniques. It specifies the differences between scholarship and quick information seeking, and examines the implications of those differences for the future of cataloging. It examines various proposals that the profession should concentrate its efforts on alternatives to cataloging: relevance ranking, tagging, under-the-hood programming, etc. The paper considers the need for, and requirements of, education of researchers; and it examines in detail many of the glaring disconnects between theory and practice in the library profession today. Finally, it provides an overview of the whole “shape of the elephant” of library services, within which cataloging is only one component."
See also: Why we need librarians, Everything Is Miscellaneous [RJ]
More Dollars, Less Sense: Waste, Fraud, and Abuse in Federal Government Contracting
"Last year, Rep. Henry A. Waxman released the first comprehensive assessment of government contracting under the Bush Administration. One year later, this new report finds that the worrisome trends identified last year have worsened significantly. For the first time, (1) annual federal procurement spending crossed the $400 billion threshold, (2) more than half of this spending — over $200 billion in new contracts — was awarded without full and open competition, and (3) the total value of wasteful federal contracts now exceeds $1 trillion." [RJ]
Large firms have trouble retaining women
"As big law firms struggle to retain women lawyers and boost them into leadership roles, they're losing many to contract positions, smaller firms, in-house jobs, government posts and legal aid careers that women lawyers say give them more control over their work and personal lives. Law firms are trying to reverse the trend with some new policies as clients seek diverse legal teams, but so far seem to have had little effect." (sub. req.) [RJ]
English-Chinese Glossary of Legal Terms, Print and Web Versions
English-Chinese Glossary of Legal Terms: The fourth edition of the English-Chinese Glossary of Legal Terms was published in December 2004. The Glossary was compiled by the Law Drafting Division of the Department of Justice and is a handy reference tool for locating bilingual legal terms and expressions used in the Hong Kong legislation. The fourth edition consists of three volumes. Volumes one and two contain 32,000 selected terms and expressions. Volume three contains, among other materials, a list of English-Chinese short titles and citations of our laws and an updated list of major Government organisations. The publication is on sale at the Government Publications Sales Section, Room 402, Murray Building, Garden Road, Central or the online Government Bookstore at http://bookstore.esdlife.com at $148 per set. For the web version of the English-Chinese Glossary of Legal Terms, please click here.
Chinese-English Glossary of Legal Terms: The Law Drafting Division of the Department of Justice published in December 1999 a Chinese-English Glossary of Legal Terms, which contains around 11500 entries. The entries contained in this Glossary echo those contained in the third edition of the English-Chinese Glossary of Legal Terms published in September 1998. To facilitate quick access to entries, both Strokes Index and Hanyupinyin Index are provided. The publication is on sale at the Government Publications Sales Section, Room 402, Murray Building, Garden Road, Central or the online Government Bookstore at http://bookstore.esdlife.com at $53. For the web version of the Chinese-English Glossary of Legal Terms, please click here.
Glossary of Terms Used in Electoral Legislation: The Law Drafting Division of the Department of Justice has produced "The Glossary of Terms used in Electoral Legislation". This bilingual glossary, which is indexed alphabetically in English and by the number of character strokes in Chinese, covers some 660 terms and expressions used in electoral legislation enacted from August 1997 until the end of February 1998. For the web version of English-Chinese Glossary of Terms Used in Electoral Legislation, please click here. For the web version of Chinese-English Glossary of Terms Used in Electoral Legislation, please click here.
Windows Live hits second generation
"Microsoft is adding photo sharing and Web-based hosted storage to Windows Live. The moves represent the first in a wave of new services that will roll out in the coming months. While Microsoft has spent the past few months winnowing its list of services and updating its mainstay Hotmail, it is now looking to add new services and bring tighter integration of its differing products."
"Teaching and learning is reaching new heights via powerful (and sometimes, unexpected) collaboration tools: meeting, conferencing, class capture applications--even wikis and open source course management systems. Find your campus collaboration model here." [RJ]
July 18, 2007
The Expanding Digital Universe: A Forecast of Worldwide Information Growth Through 2010
"In this detailed white paper, IDC researches and analyzes the impact of ever-increasing amounts of digital information generated worldwide. It defines the digital universe and forecasts its growth to an incredible 988 exabytes (or 988 billion gigabytes) in the year 2010. Get a clear picture of what this expanding universe means to you and your organization. Find out what's driving growth—from files and e-mail to voice data and images. And learn about strategies for managing the rapidly expanding digital universe." [RJ]
Directory & Search Engine Of The World's Embassies & Consulates
"Serving the diplomatic community and the online community since 1996, EmbassyWorld is designed to provide a comprehensive list of contact resources for all of the world's diplomatic offices. Our goal is to provide an easy-to-navigate directory that is clearly laid out and fully cross-indexed." Check it out. [RJ]
A Provost and Librarian Walk Into a Meeting...
"Speaker after speaker in the audience posed variations on that scenario Monday at a session of the American Library Association’s annual conference that was part roundtable, part “Ask Amy.” During “The Art of Persuasion: Strategies for Effective Communication with Chief Academic Officers,” organized by the Association of College and Research Libraries, the provosts and vice presidents for academic affairs on the panel shared a list of their do’s and don’ts when approaching new college officials in their positions." [RJ]
New CDC Report Documents Percentage of People Without Health Insurance
"CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics is issuing a new report entitled "Early Release of Health Insurance Estimates Based on Data From the 2006 National Health Interview Survey."
Some of the highlights include:
- In 2006, there were 43.6 million Americans of all ages who did not have health insurance (at the time of the interview), or 14.8% of the population.
- Among working-age Americans (those ages 18-64), there were 19.8% who did not have health insurance in 2006, a slight increase from 18.9% in 2005.
- Approximately 9.3% of children under the age of 18 did not have health insurance in 2006, a decrease from 13.9% in 1997.
- In 2006, the percentage uninsured at the time of interview among the 20 largest states ranged from 7.7% in Michigan to 23.8% in Texas. [RJ]
Doctor's blog sinks malpractice defense
"In a surpise move by opposing counsel in a recent malpractice suit, the defendant was revealed on the stand to have written prejudicial comments about the trial on his personal Web log. The case settled out of court the next day. Plaintiff's lawyer Elizabeth Mulvey says attorneys would be wise to make sure clients have not posted information on the Internet that could affect a trial." (sub. req.) [RJ]
Political Science Papers Blog
"Welcome to the political science papers blog, which seeks to serve as a rough-and-ready guide to political science papers which are likely to have some appeal to a general audience (as measured by the editor’s idiosyncratic notions of ‘appeal’). As currently constituted, the blog will post entries consisting of the abstracts of the papers, bibliographic details, and, where available, links to the papers in question." [RJ]