News You Need to Start the Week

by | Apr 30, 2012 | 0 comments

Today’s menu: a new resource from Sunlight Labs; Excellence in Academic Libraries Award goes to Champlain College; new medical ebook pack from ebrary; CODiE Award finalists include Cengage Learning; an advanced digitization method; and S&P revises its rating on ProQuest.

  Scout—A New Free Alert System for Government Information

Information Today reports that “Sunlight Labs introduced Scout, a free alert system for the things you care about in state and national government. It covers Congress, regulations across the whole executive branch, and legislation in all 50 states. You can set up notifications for new things that match keyword searches. Or, if you find a particular bill you want to keep up with, Scout can notify you whenever anything interesting happens to it—or is about to. Notifications are available via email, SMS, RSS, and JSON. 

INFOdocket also reported on this new resource in this post “Scout: A New Alerting Tool (Beta) for Fed/State Government Info From Sunlight Labs.”

Scout is in beta and to offer your impressions you can click on  Feedback which is also located on their website.

Champlain College library wins award

Champlain College has received an Excellence in Academic Libraries Award from the Association of College and Research Libraries.
The award was presented Monday to Champlain College library director Janet Cottrell by Joyce Ogburn, association president and university librarian at the University of Utah.   “This year’s award recipients exemplify the commitment of today’s academic and research librarians to providing quality, innovative student learning experiences,” Ogburn said in a news release issued by Champlain College. “Receiving an Excellence in Academic Libraries Award is a national tribute to each library and its staff for outstanding services, programs and leadership…”

ebrary Helps Medical Libraries Acquire E-books Strategically, Launches New Packs (PDF)

“ebrary®… today announced a solution specifically for medical libraries that includes new packs in Nursing & Allied Health, Medicine, and Psychology & Social Work. The new, discounted packs include essential e-books from publishers such as Informa Healthcare, F.A. Davis Company, and Oxford University Press that are purchased outright under a perpetual..”
archive model.

 Cengage Learning’s Course360 Named 2012 CODiE Award Finalist

“Cengage Learning…, was recently named a finalist in the Best Postsecondary Instructional Solution category of the Software & Information Industry Association’s (SIIA) 2012 CODiE Awards for its Course360 online courses.  The CODiE Awards, the only peer-reviewed honor in the industry, celebrate achievement and vision in software, education technology and digital content.  The Best Postsecondary Instructional Solution category recognizes the best teaching solution targeted toward students in college and trade/professional school learning environments. Category finalists include solutions that offer ability to deliver custom-crafted materials and help students navigate their digital/ebooks and reference content in a format that fits the way they learn with interactive media, collaboration tools and course content…”

Quality Assurance for Digital Book Collections

INFOdocket reports on this post from the Open Planets Foundation that discusses an advance in digitization method:

“Scientists of the Safety and Security Department at the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) developed a method to efficiently detect corresponding images between different image collections as well as to assess their quality. By using inter point detection and derivation of local feature descriptors, which have proven highly invariant to geometrical, brightness and color distortions, they are able to successfully process even problematic documents (e.g. handwritten books, ancient Chinese texts)… This work is part of the SCAlable Preservation Environments (SCAPE) project which aims at developing scalable services for planning and execution of institutional digital preservation strategies. The SCAPE project is co-funded by the European Union under FP7 ICT-2009.4.1 (Grant Agreement number 270137).”

S&P revises ProQuest outlook to stable

“On April 26, 2012, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services revised its rating outlook on Ann Arbor, Mich.-based ProQuest LLC to stable from negative. We affirmed all existing ratings on the company, including the ‘B-‘ corporate credit rating…”

“Overview — U.S. library content provider ProQuest completed the issuance of a new $150 million first-lien term loan due 2018 and $40 million revolver due 2017, and used the proceeds to refinance its existing credit facility. — We are revising our ‘B-‘ rating outlook on the company to stable from negative. — The stable outlook reflects our expectation that ProQuest will maintain an adequate cushion of compliance and adequate liquidity based on the recent transaction to support the current rating.”


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