Thursday, December 17, 2009


The SLIS Library would like to extend a hearty "congrats" to all its new graduates! Twenty-one students have reached the end of their (all too brief?) sojourn with SLIS and are preparing to launch themselves into the heart-stopping world of the professional librarian. While we will miss them, we wish them all the best.

This semester's happy graduates include Kathleen Baird, Lori Bird, Michelle Coller, Michelle Downer, Lyra Eugenio-Thomson, Katie Gleischman, Lisa Guidarini, Matthew Jabaily, June Jacob, Christina Johannson, Susan Mannix, Keely Merchant, Sarah Mueller, James Ramsey, Bruce Sullivan, Dennis Trest, Merle Watkins, Suzanne Way, Lisa Winkler, Briana Wolbers, and Megan Zabel. Go get em, grads! Don't forget to write.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Well done, Sensational SLISers!

Congratulations to UW-Madison's own Sensational SLISers book cart drill team, who returned triumphant from this year's WLA annual conference! The 2009 routine, based on an unlikely mashup of the Harry Potter theme and "I Put A Spell On You," worked its magic on the WLA judges, who awarded the SLISers first place honors. Swing by the SLIS library and check out the team's trophy-on-wheels: a slick new magenta book cart.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Explore the world of cartonera publishing!

In 2003, a group of progressive Argentinian artists and writers developed a new alternative to the paradigms of corporate publishing that have dominated the distribution of books for decades. Cartonera publishing uses salvaged cardboard, cheaply photocopied pages, and tempera paint to create one-of-a-kind works of art that can vastly undercut the often prohibitive prices of commercially published books. In the six years since its birth, cartonera publishing has caught fire, extending its fingers into Mexico, Brazil, Peru, and much of the rest of Latin America. It's a fascinating cultural phenomenon, and the issues of access and community addressed by cartonera should be of particular interest to us as librarians.

Hot on the heels of Banned Book Week, and in conjunction with the Wisconsin Book Fest, UW-Madison has organized a cartonera publishers conference, featuring presentations by eight cartonera editors and an exhibition of some of the fruits of this unique form. In addition, SLIS will host a Make Your Own Cartonera workshop, under the experienced guidance of Aldo Medinaceli of Yerba Mala Cartonera. All the materials are provided, so stop by the Commons between 10 and 12 on Friday, October 9th, and get acquainted with the iconoclastic, DIY aesthetic of cartonera!

Cartonera Conference
October 8-9
Full Schedule of Events

Cartonera Workshop
Friday, October 9th, 10AM-12PM
SLIS Commons

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Welcome back SLISers.

Welcome SLIS students to Fall semester.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

SLIS Library excitement does not end with the waning of Spring Semester!

In the coming weeks, your loyal SLIS Library attendants will be assembling course reserve materials for summer classes, making headway on reorganizing our stacks, and providing the first-class service that you have come to expect of us.

Firstly, your access to summer print and e-reserves will operate in the same fashion as during the normal fall and spring semesters. Look for them as the first day of your class approaches.

Secondly, one of our summer projects will be working to coordinate a reorganization of our collection. We will be integrating materials from our general collection into the our Newsletters and Annual Reports section to create a Historical Section, while the currently received Newsletters will be integrated into the Periodicals. In this way, we hope to minimize confusion and maximize simplified access to our materials.

Finally, if you plan on frequenting the SLIS Library this summer, please keep in mind that our summer hours will be changing more swiftly than James Patterson can churn out a book. Our schedule is based on the summer course timeline and when in-person classes will be meeting at our library. Summer hours are posted on the front door of the SLIS Library and on our website, accessible at here.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Louise's Retirement from SLIS

As you probably already know, our indefatigable School of Library and Information Studies Director, Louise Robbins, will be retiring this summer. What some of you may not know is that Louise first came to SLIS in 1991 as the faculty director of the SLIS Laboratory Library. After the previous Lab Library director retired in 1990, a search began for a replacement faculty member to serve as director. At the time, the Laboratory Library added to it's mission the role of teaching library and the library director replacement needed to be highly attuned to students' learning needs. So, in August of 1991, Louise, who was still a doctoral candidate at Texas Women's University, joined the faculty as director of the library with her job description including implementation of a brand new requirement for master's students -- the practicum. Louise's charge was to develop and supervise practicum experiences for all students and to design projects using the Laboratory Library. I think we all know how that new intiative turned out, don't we? Sadly, in 1997 the Laboratory Library lost Louise as the director, but luckily our school gained her as the department director, and ... the rest is history.

We are all very grateful for the work Louise has done for the SLIS Laboratory Library and the department overall. She is admired and loved and will be genuinely missed.

To honor Louise's legacy of learning and leadership, please consider joining us in a gathering for her in the SLIS Laboratory Library this Friday, April 17, 2009 from 4:30-7:00 p.m. (Program at 5:30 p.m.). We will celebrate and reminisce about Louise's many dedicated years as SLIS director, faculty and, last but not least, director of the Lab Library.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

SLIS Laboratory Library Redesign

Do you have your fall housing lined up yet? Consider a sleeping pod in the new mixed use SLIS Library development, SLOOGLE (SLIS Library Out of the bOx Great Living Environment). All units will retain access to the comfy furniture by the lake windows. Outlet spots on the west side will also remain a “Commons” area, but with a new reservation system. The microforms area will be taken over by Food Fight and while details of the new restaurant are still in the planning stages, the agreement does require 24/7 availability of good coffee. More retail and office space will also become available as we reduce the collection. Besant voiced some concerns but has been voted off the island.
Suggestions? More interested in distance services? Contact the SLOOGLE Team.

Seriously now, SLIS students are not around as much as has been true in the past. As we think about space use and services going forward, what would be helpful for you? Please email mbesant at if you’d like to be part of a planning effort.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Who celebrated their 20th birthday just two weeks ago?

- “Born” on March 13, 1989
- “Birthed” at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (aka CERN Laboratory)
- “Inception” by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, with his authorship of the paper "Information Management: A Proposal”

Do you think you know the answer? Email your guess to the SLIS Library ( and you will be entered for the chance to win a special library-related prize!

Certificate of Birth
___???____ was born to Sir Tim Berners-Lee
on this thirteenth day of March 1989
at CERNuropean Organisation for Nuclear Research.

Reply By: April 3rd.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Next Chapter in Wireless Reading- Stay informed on the latest technologies!

Alternative formats are becoming more popular and mainstream than ever. The Amazon Kindle 2 is the latest electronic reader. Books download to the Kindle in less than five seconds. It's not back lit like a computer, which makes it especially easy to read. A keyboard is included to make annotations, as well as to look up words in the built-in dictionary. It's so slim, (1/3 inch!) you can practically take it anywhere. It can also hold up to 1500 books!! The Kindle has a unique file type, so there's no need to ever connect to a computer. You can browse Amazon. com Kindle store on the Kindle itself as well.
Learn more here.
Also, check out the Sony Reader here.

Monday, March 2, 2009

SLIS Library Workshops and the last Open Source Webinar

Have you checked out the SLIS library workshop schedule yet? We scheduled various great workshops this semester, including Ms Office software, online databases and other useful LIS resources. All workshops are in the SLIS Computer Lab (Click Here for Schedule). Welcome to drop-in any of them. Here are the workshops in the following weeks:

- Instructor: Crystle Martin
- Date: Tuesday, March 3, 1:00-2:00
ProQuest: Historical Newspapers
- Instructor: Peggy Cruse
- Date: Monday, March 9, 2:00-3:00
New Tools
- Instructors: Crystle Martin and Melissa Adler
- Date: Friday, March 13, 11:00-12:00
ProQuest: Historical Newspapers
- Instructor: Peggy Cruse
- Date: Monday, March 23, 2:00-3:00
Collection Manager
- Instructor: Sheliah Harrington
- Date: Thursday, March 26, noon-1:00

Also, SLIS library registered for a series of WiLS Open Source Webinars, and we will be having the last Webinar this Friday. You can find out more about Open Source Webinars at

Friday Webinar: Google Sites and Apps for non-profits
- Date: Friday, March 6, noon-1:00
- Location: Cat Lab

Monday, February 23, 2009

Oscar At The Library

Did Sunday night's show leave you eager to learn more about movies? The 81st Annual Academy Awards might be in the history books, but that doesn't mean you have to wait until next year to satisfy your motion picture curiosity. Aspiring cinematographers, wannabe film critics, and movie fans everywhere can turn to these unique libraries to discover the wonders of the cinema.

As the official library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the Margaret Herrick Library is considered "The World's Preeminent Cinema Research Facility." The Herrick Library's collection focuses on the development of motion picture as both an art form and an industry. A visit to the Herrick Library, located in Beverly Hills, might uncover anything from screenplays and production design sketches to the personal papers of Alfred Hitchcock. Although almost all of the library's collection is available to the public, all of the Herrick Library materials are non-circulating.

No stranger to preservation and research, the Library of Congress operates its own institution devoted to cinema. The Motion Picture and Television Reading Room is a project of the Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Division (MBRS) of the Library of Congress. The reading room contains descriptive materials about motion pictures that date back to Thomas Edison's Kinetoscopic Records from the 1890's. Different in scope from the Hollywood-focused collection of the Academy's Herrick Library, the Motion Picture and Television Reading Room collects and documents films that trace the everyday history of America, mostly from the first half of the 20th Century. While the reading room is located in Washington, D.C., many of the MBRS' historic films are viewable online.

Lastly, located right in our own backyard, the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research is an internationally recognized facility devoted to collecting the papers and A/V materials of key personnel across all facets of US audio/visual/stage culture. A joint project of the Wisconsin Historical Society and the Communication Arts department of UW-Madison, the WCFTR is a gold mine of historic television footage, classic manuscripts from Broadway, landmarks of independent cinema, and a window to Hollywood's Golden Age. Where else but the WCFTR can you find the financial records of none other than Spartacus himself, Kirk Douglas?

Image "Neon" courtesy Flickr user Hitchster:

Monday, February 9, 2009

Find us in the Stacks!

For the last 3 weeks we have been working on a huge shelf reading project. We have been going through the stacks, shelf by shelf, making sure all of them are in perfect Dewey Decimal order. When we find books out of order, we take them out, browse them (to make sure they are not marked as "Lost" in Voyager), and put them back where they belong. We started the project in the children's section and we are steadily moving toward the general collection. Along the way we are getting better acquainted with our collection and with Dewey. So, if you ever need to find us and we are not behind the desk, check the stacks!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Top 10 ways to spot the arrival of spring from the 4th floor of Helen C.:

10. The contents of the lost and found diminish-anyone missing a left glove?
9. You can make more use of daylight when you're sitting in the comfy chairs by the window
8. SLIS lab library workers are commencing in periodical cleaning whilst humming merry tunes
7. The clocks in the Computer lab and Cat lab go from Mountain Standard time to even more wrong
6. Library patrons are shocked with the latest gossip, not static
5. The polar and tropical climate zones in the library become more temperate
4. The tissue boxes are emptied, not for melting nostrils, but for allergic ones
3. The view from the window reveals ice fishers are being replaced by sail boats on the lake
2. The Chinese characters on the windows-ask Tien-I in the Cat Lab!
1. The one degree you're concerned with is designated by the University, not by Fahrenheit