The digital videos for selected Code4Lib 2009 conference presentations are now available (QuickTime format).
Archive for the 'Techie' Category
Here's a quick selection:
EDUCAUSE has released The Economic Downturn and Its Impact on IT: Suggestions for EDUCAUSE Response.
Here's an excerpt:
- Two-thirds of respondents indicate that their institution has experienced budget cuts of an average of 7% overall. These cuts are expected to rise to 9%.
- The average cut for IT units is the same as for the total institution (7%), with about half currently facing budget reductions.
- Public institutions are more affected than private colleges and universities. Also, large public institutions are more likely to have cuts, and the cuts are larger compared to smaller, public institutions. Variances by FTE for private institutions were not significant.
- CIOs report cuts more frequently than do faculty. Among faculty who report cuts, however, a larger proportion report deeper cuts, compared to the CIO respondents.
- Most CIOs (88%) have at least some discretion in how to allocate cuts, but 61% have had mandatory restrictions. Among those without complete discretion, the most common budget reduction strategy is a hiring freeze, either through leaving positions unfilled (75%) or not hiring new positions (69%). Nearly half (43%) have travel freezes.
The New York Public Library Labs has built a new Rails-based usability testing tool called Infomaki. It' still a "zero-point” release, but an open source release is planned soon.
Read more about it at "Introducing Infomaki: Bite-sized Usability Testing."
The Communications Workers of America have released Speed Matters: A Report on Internet Speeds in All 50 States.
Here's an excerpt:
The median download speed for the nation [the U.S.] was 2.3 megabits per second (mbps). In Japan, the median download speed is 63 mbps, or 30 times faster than the U.S. U.S. also trails South Korea at 49 mbps, Finland at 21 mbps, France at 17 mbps, and Canada at 7.6 mbps. The median upload speed from the speedmatters.org test was just 435 kilobits per second (kbps), far too slow for patient monitoring or to transmit large files such as medical records.
Read more about it at "Drupal: MLibrary's Future CMS."
Presentations from the Corporation for National Research Initiatives' Handle System Workshop are now available.
Here's a description of he Handle System from its home page:
The Handle System is a general purpose distributed information system that provides efficient, extensible, and secure HDL identifier and resolution services for use on networks such as the Internet. It includes an open set of protocols, a namespace, and a reference implementation of the protocols. The protocols enable a distributed computer system to store identifiers, known as handles, of arbitrary resources and resolve those handles into the information necessary to locate, access, contact, authenticate, or otherwise make use of the resources. This information can be changed as needed to reflect the current state of the identified resource without changing its identifier, thus allowing the name of the item to persist over changes of location and other related state information.
Here's an excerpt from the announcement:
DiRT lists dozens of useful tools for discovering, organizing, analyzing, visualizing, sharing and disseminating information, such as tools for compiling bibliographies, taking notes, analyzing texts, and visualizing data. We also offer software reviews that not only describe the tool’s features, strengths, and weaknesses, but also provide usage tips, links to training resources, and suggestions for how it might be implemented by researchers. So that DiRT is accessible to non-techies and techies alike, we try to avoid jargon and categorize tools by their functions. Although the acronym DiRT might suggest that it’s a gossip site for academic software, dishing on bugs and dirty secrets about the software development process, we prefer a gardening metaphor, as we hope to help cultivate research projects by providing clear, concise information about tools that can help researchers do their more work more effectively or creatively.
DiRT is brand new, so we’re still in the process of creating content and figuring how best to present it; consider it to be in alpha release and expect to see it evolve. (We plan to announce DiRT more broadly in a few months, but we’re giving sneak previews right now in the hope that comments from members of the digital humanities community can help us to improve it.) Currently the DiRT editorial team includes me, my ever-innovative and enthusiastic colleague Debra Kolah, and three whip-smart librarians from Sam Houston State University with expertise in Web 2.0 technologies (as well as English, history, business, and ranching!): Tyler Manolovitz, Erin Dorris Cassidy, and Abe Korah. We’ve committed to provide at least 5 new tool reviews per month, but we can do even more if more people join us (hint, hint). We invite folks to recommend research tools or software categories, write reviews, sign on to be co-editors, and/or offer feedback on the wiki.