Friday, September 09, 2005

Geaux Library Project

Please pass on to anyone you know or any listserv you are on ....

Dear Librarians, Information Professionals and other Friends,

The Geaux Library Project will attempt to meet the information needs at hurricane evacuee shelters around Louisiana and beyond. Using computers and networking equipment donated to the Red Cross and others by large commercial and local IT companies, we will be setting up small computer labs at Red Cross shelters and staffing them with librarians and other trained volunteers.

Our pilot locations in Louisiana will include the Gonzales, Baton Rouge, and Acadiana (Lafayette) areas. We need your help!

Specifically, we have openings for the following volunteer positions:

On-site positions

Geaux Getters
You will do an initial needs assessment on the shelter(s) in your area. You will be provided with a questionnaire to determine the information necessary for the project. This will require you to visit the shelter physically and in put your findings into a web-based form.

Geaux Coordinators
You will be responsible for determining and assigning the necessary amount of volunteers for shelter(s) that they oversee. Communications will take place over the phone, online, and possibly in person. Coordinators may need to periodically visit the shelter site to determine adequacy of resources. Coordinators can also double as Geaux Librarians.

Geaux Librarians
You will be asked to supervise a small network of computers and volunteers in a shelter. This may include: reference, referring in-depth questions to our searcher network, data entry, instruction on computer use to a population with very limited computer skills, coordinating computer usage times among patrons, opening and/or closing the computer area, basic technical support i.e. turning on computer and maintaining a printer and/or fax machine, other duties as they arise. Shifts are flexible.

You will need to be available to do anything the Geaux Librarians or Geaux Coordinators need you to do.

Geaux Techs
Hardware and network techs will be needed to troubleshoot any issues that may come up at the various sites, and setup new shelter computers. Some of the work may be done remotely depending on the issue.

Geaux Couriers
You will drive equipment and supplies from a pickup point to the shelters. This can be a one time job or you can volunteer to do it more often. We will specify the locations as they come up. We have an immediate need for a Geaux Courier to bring equipment from Lafayette to Gonzales or Baton Rouge!

Remote Positions

Geaux Speed Searcher
You will be issued a login ID and password that will give you access to questions posted by onsite librarians. You may work on these answers and view other answers until a notice has been posted that no more are needed. This may be done anytime, anywhere, and our only request is, in accordance with the ALA Code of Ethics, to respect the confidentiality of these questions.

Geaux Writer
You will write content for the website as needed such as policies, volunteer position descriptions, link descriptions, etc... Experience in writing clear, easy to read information in a must.

Geaux Webmaster
You will maintain the website. You must have experience in using a variety of web programming languages and using database driven websites.

Everything is completely voluntary at this time, but the satisfaction you receive will be helping hurricane Katrina victims by doing what you know how to do better than anyone else!

For more information and further description of volunteer opportunities, please see our website. Go there to fill out the volunteer signup form to become part of this much needed project.

We are also accepting Donations through the website. Click on the For Donors section to see what items we need and how to donate.

We will be putting out instructions on how to start your own Geaux Library in your area soon, so keep watching the website for more information. The website is just now functional to get more volunteers and donations. We will add more information when we get some help.

For our sanity, please do NOT respond by e-mail! Use the website to communicate with us.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Spectrometer Classroom Package Available for Loan

Some news from MPOW that might be of interest. The ALTA® Reflectance Spectrometer classroom package is available for loan. Qualified sites will receive:
  • 20 working ALTA® Reflectance Spectrometers
  • 1 ALTA® Reflectance Spectrometer CD including lesson plans
  • 1 ALTA® Reflectance Spectrometer booklet including lesson plans
  • 1 Basalt sample
  • 1 Olivine sample
  • 1 Hematite sample
  • 1 sample of Martian Soil Simulant
  • 1 sample of Lunar Soil Simulant
  • 1 CD containing images of Mars and the Moon to assist in lesson plans
The ALTA Reflectance Spectrometer® is a classroom instrument designed to allow students (grade 5 through adult) to learn about visible light, invisible light, the origins of color, and the value of reflection spectroscopy of light in remote sensing applications. Using the ALTA, students themselves can measure the reflectances, i.e., the proportions of incident light that are reflected, from materials of their own choosing. With ALTA, reflectances can be measured in eleven colors of light, blue through infrared. Measured reflectances on suitable surfaces are typically within a few percent of laboratory values. The ALTA is suitable for classroom demonstrations and laboratory investigations in biology, geology, planetary sciences, and physics.


The North American Serials Interest Group, Inc (NASIG) now has an RSS feed from their news page. Looks like the page is using Blogger.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Fine Tuning FRBR

Thom Hickey at Outgoing describes using the thematic index number or code in music records that helps identify the piece described to get better clustering results in FRBR. Looks like a very useful tweak.

Call for Computers and Printers

"The outpouring of support for our request for computers has been tremendous," Hamilton advises. "We nearly have what we need. Please put out the word that we have what we need in the way of computers and printers and people can focus on those other states that have been devastated. Tell everyone to pass on the word. We are working quickly to prepare the computers for our libraries. You all have saved the day!"
The State library of Louisiana has sent out this call for computer equipment. If you are interested and able to send computers, here is the request from the Louisiana State Librarian, Rebecca Hamilton.

To all-we are in desperate need of computers/printers. We are being inundated with evacuees needing to file FEMA applications, unemployment, search for loved ones, etc. and are coming into our public libraries to use the computers. Our libraries have greatly extended their hours to accommodate the people but they need additional computers and printers. If you can please put the word out that if anyone wants to help immediately, this is our greatest need."

Equipment Specs:
  • Pentium 3
  • Windows 2000, prefer XP
  • Laser printers if you can still get toner for them
Send equipment to:
State Library of Louisiana
701 North 4th Street
Baton Rouge, La. 70802-5232
If you are able to assist them, please let Rebecca know via email at to help her know what to expect.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005


myOAI seems to have disappeared without a trace. Anyone know the story?