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“Guerilla Open Access Manifesto”

“Guerilla Open Access Manifesto” published on No Comments on “Guerilla Open Access Manifesto”

If you are in academia you are probably at least aware of the growing Open Access movement.  I think of it basically as Creative Commons for scholars, and this doesn’t really mesh well with the pre-existing publishing model that scholars and academics have been using for ages. The Internet Archive has full text of the “Guerilla Open Access Manifesto”.  It’s short and sweet and strong and well thought.

"Information is power. But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for 
themselves."

Having the flu

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ihavethefluI had the flu most of Christmas break.  This is one of the few drawings I managed to squeeze out of my mind/hand while I was sick.  I found it.  And now that the memory of how terribly I felt is almost gone, I kind of like the drawing.  It could be a good logo or tattoo for something or other, except that it has my face on it.

Our lives with books

Our lives with books published on 2 Comments on Our lives with books

I am finally back in the saddle of keeping up with my fellow library schmucks and I’ve scrolled through enough news items for the ‘e-books not print books,’ ‘death of libraries in face of digital materials,’ ‘no one has personal libraries anymore’ chants to finally give me a headache. I understand it’s posh and edgy to make such sweeping pronouncements but it’s only done to get a rise.  I mean, isn’t it?  You all don’t really believe that digital literature will replace all things print?

library003library002library001

Lo and behold, my personal library.  I weed it often but it never decreases appreciably in size.  And you know what?  My collection of digital literature, some duplicating but most unique, is probably growing to be just as big.  Arguments abound from people who rose to the bait of the digital over physical headlines generally go like this:

PRO Digi:

  • multiple books accessed through one light weight and portable device
  • less storage space
  • fits into already increasingly digital world

PRO Print:

  • art books and often comics are not made for digital interface
  • like the feel and smell of books
  • not everything is duplicated, therefor how can print be replaced

I find I use print and digital books in different ways.  I used to keep list of books I wanted to read but didn’t have the time right now, you know, the ones libraries don’t reliably carry.  Now I buy the e-book because, although it is a purchase, it seems like less of a commitment.  It doesn’t take space in my home and when I am done with it, deleting it will feel a whole lot less of a waste than trying to donate a print copy in a responsible way.  E-books equal easy to dispose equals somehow easier to buy.  I buy print books when I know I will want to revisit the thing many many times, when I know I will want to lend it to a friend.  A lot of my print collection is picture heavy, harkening back to a standard print pro.  Increasingly my print collection houses several indie publications, not only rare for their small printing, but because the indie comic and zine making community is still very hands on.

People who cultivate personal libraries will probably just add digital material to their print collecting.  Libraries are a multimedia experience after all.  People who bought the best seller, or the book their friend recommended, to read and then discard, or sit on an ignored shelf in the family room, will probably move their habits to digital if inclined in that direction.  My point:  there is no either or decision to be made, and each circumstance will be different for each consumer.  If we’re talking about publishers making calls to best sell/market their material, maybe format on demand will be the fashion, where the consumer can choose what format they would like at checkout.

Finally, I buy print because when the big electromagnetic bombs go off and plunge our world back into the middle ages, I am going to have the most kickin’ access to entertainment all in my spare room.

inhale, count to ten

inhale, count to ten published on No Comments on inhale, count to ten

Ok, my website (except for the Bean) is currently completely messed up.  No images are displaying and I can trace no reason.  Gonna take a chance and ignore it until tomorrow in the hopes that it is something weird with my host.

fingers crossed

No problem, dumb head, sort of.  So, I started brainstorming all the things that could be happening and realized that I should probably double check the site via a different browser before freaking out too much.  And then I thought about anything that is different with my browser and I remembered that I had outfitted it to avoid online tracking.  Problem solved.  Don’t know how to two are connected, though I know it is corrected ’cause the only problem was in my browser till I reverted my online tracking changes.  Not all of them but still.  Never mind my freaking out, or trying not to freak out.  Even though I’m rambling nonsensically, never mind.

Think about what we do

Think about what we do published on No Comments on Think about what we do

In my library news streams was an article : Oakmont Regional High librarian eyes ditching Dewey Decimal System for new classification – Sentinel & Enterprise.  The librarian at Oakmont points out that the Dewey Decimal system isn’t giving the right message to the kids.  Examples:  Homer’s ILLiad in nonfiction and books on homosexuality next to those on incest and prostitution.  I had never thought about it before and am surprised at myself.  Also impressed when people don’t simply accept something because it is custom, traditional, or whatever.

Ode to Shampoo

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my husband and friends have heard my diatribe during my long and clumsy search of a new shampoo.  you see, I used to use herbal essences and then it changed formulas and everything had cocoa butter.  I mourned the loss of the herby tea like scents and grumbled over having to seek something else in the fruity cocoa buttery world of shampoo.  I don’t like the smell of the buttery.  anyway, long story kind of shorter, when I was in the drug store the other day I found this.  I didn’t know if it was back-stock found in a box somewhere or if the wonderful tea smelly herbaceous wonderment of hair care is coming back from the breach, but I bought it and will indulge my sense nostalgia to its fullest just the same.

lo and behold, when I got home I saw a commercial reminiscent of the original hair washing on the plane commercial from way back when.  Herbal Essences has heard my plea and this was no back-stock.  yes!

Who is John Galt?

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As I write the topic line for this post I am thinking of my mother and her coffee mug and mouse-pad that say just that:  ‘Who is John Galt?’ – the disillusioned anthem of the independent hard-worker in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged.  Mom gave the book to me to read when I was 15 and I read like a demon through every class break and into the early morning.  But why talk about it now?  I just came across an article in The Spokesman-Review : Bill requires all Idaho kids to read ‘Atlas Shrugged.’

Now, the perpetrator of the bill is painting it as a lesson to the board of education regarding other rules and repeals.  He isn’t really going to follow through, but the article brings up popular opinion on the book that I wanted to ponder.

“The 1957 novel has been embraced by libertarians and the tea party movement, in part for its opposition to “statism” and embrace of capitalism, as Rand expressed her philosophy of “objectivism,” focusing on “the morality of rational self-interest.” In recent years, the novel has been touted by conservative commentators including Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.”

It’s been a while since I’ve read it and perhaps my 15 year old mind was being dazzled by themes in the book that it wanted to see, not the themes that everyone else was seeing.  Honestly, I don’t quite get conservative adopting of the book.  Maybe it’s my 33 year old mind not really understanding politics outside of seeing how they’re practiced.  But here goes, here’s some pondering:

I’ll admit that Ayn Rand pitches a hard line in Atlas Shrugged and that all of her hard lines in all of the books I’ve read of her’s have glowed with capitalism.  Though capitalism, to me, has always been a non-partisan, non-denominational love.  In fact, economic systems are not political systems, no matter how much they are confused.

Rand’s “morality of rational self-interest” seemed a meaner, seedier quest for human perfection and self reliance along the lines of Louisa May Alcott’s Transcendentalism.  Though where Alcott may suffer the public because it is embiggening, Rand leaves the public because they are insufferable.  The public here are the masses of fictional devices who rely and profit completely on another’s talent, success, and drive.  These devices may or may not reflect actual persons.

What I got from Atlas Shrugged is that a person’s utmost responsibility is to himself, and that, whether admitted or no, everyone functions in their own self-interest.  No action is without selfishness.  This self-interest must be balanced to the needs of the society one chooses to function within.  It’s almost anarchic when you consider that the ultimate self-responsibility exhibited in the book is leaving/disappearing from/abandoning the society that doesn’t blend with one’s own ideals and needs.  This is why I never considered Ayn Rand’s writings to have anything to do with politics and why I wonder at their adoption by conservative groups.  Don’t political parties need government?  Isn’t anarchism about having none?

Oh, but you may say they are trying to change government for the better in line with “rational self interest.”  Changing the society you live in admits to loving/needing it the way it is as well.  It is supporting the structure put in place by those who oppose you.  Consider, when you cannot win an argument the energy you put into arguing is wasted.  You cannot argue someone out of their beliefs.  You can leave them be and go do something productive with your time and money.

i don’t care

i don’t care published on No Comments on i don’t care

if wordpress is urging me to update. I have learned my lesson not to do such things until my plugins say I can.

Erase yourself

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I have killed my imaginary pet by deleting my link from Facebook to the only game I kept playing.   For a long time, the only reason I would log into Facebook daily was to feed the guy and make sure he was happy.  Every time I took a weekend off and had to look at his pitiful poor starving posture and filth I wanted the freedom but couldn’t make myself do it.  Now I go days without thinking about logging in and it’s wonderful.  I think it’s just one of those things that you make yourself need when you don’t.  You know those things, like all web 2.0.  I’m not going to make any great argument for or against living part of your life online.  I certainly am not one to talk either way.  But if you should want to leave the net there are a couple of options out there:   web 2.0 suicide machine and vanish:  self destructing digital data.

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