Archive for the ‘libraries’ Category

Friday, February 20th, 2015

New Feature: Lending (a.k.a. “Circulation”)

circulation-lendingboxWe’ve just released a major new feature: lending tracking, or, as libraries call it, “circulation.”

Why are we doing this?

Regular members have long called for a simple way to track lending. But the strongest calls have come from the many small libraries that use LibraryThing–community centers, classrooms, museums, churches, synagogues, ashrams, health centers, masonic temples, etc. We’ve got a list of some our favorites.

Simple but Strong

Although simple to use, “Lending” was designed to be powerful enough for small libraries. Rather than just a field for a name, it’s a full system, with:

  • Who checked something out and when
  • Due dates and “overdue” status
  • “On hold,” “missing” an custom statuses
  • Summary information by transaction, status and patron
  • Control over what status information visitors see

Here’s a video I made explaining it:

If you don’t want to watch the video, or want more information, here it is in text.

Come talk to us about it here on Talk.

Where can I find it?

Members who haven’t changed their catalog display styles will find the “Lending” column on style “B.” To add it to a style, go to “Settings.” (This used to be just a “cog” graphic next to the styles.)

circ_bar_1and2

You can find Lending summary information as a mode, together with tags, authors, etc.

circ_bar_1

Here’s how it looks in the catalog. Double-click to add or change a book’s lending status. Although there are a lot of fields, everything is optional. If you just want to track in/out, with no names or dates or due-dates, that’s fine:
circulation-catalog

Here’s what lending looks like on book pages–a little “book-pocket” icon () to edit lending status, and, if the book has a status, an area for showing it.
circulation_bookpage

Here’s what it looks to add a status:
circulation-newstatus

Selecting the “Lending” menu within the catalog () shows you summary and transaction information.
circulation-transactions

There are a lot of options here:
circulation-patronscirculation-statuscirculation-dewey

There’s also a “Lending Summary” section for your home page, available under Home > Books:
Homepage

Thanks. Come talk to us about it here on Talk.

PS: This was a joint effort between myself and Ammar, who did great work, with some help from Chris Holland and others.

Labels: libraries, new feature, new features, small libraries

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Occupy Libraries!

It’s been fascinating to watch the rise of libraries at the various Occupy sites around the world, particularly the impressively-large collection at Occupy Wall Street known as the People’s Library. We reached out and suggested a LibraryThing account for the collection, and the volunteer librarians in Zucotti Park responded enthusiastically.

The OWSLibrary catalog now includes more than 3,300 titles, and it’s quite a rich and varied collection (check out the tag mirror). We’ve got a Talk thread where members are posting the books they share with the library; as of this morning, I share 100 titles with them, everything from E.O. Wilson to Annie Dillard to Strunk & White. If you’re signed into LibraryThing, you can see what you share with the OWS Library here.

The OWSLibrary folks also have an active blog, Twitter, and Flickr presence (they’ve even got library stamps!). Many authors have visited to speak, lend support, and sign books, and there’s now even an Occupy Wall Street Poetry Anthology.

More than 1,300 writers have signed the Occupy Writers petition in support of the Occupy movement, including Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Junot Díaz and more.

You can read some good coverage of the Occupy library movement in American Libraries, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Wall Street Journal.

On Friday, local librarian JustinTheLibrarian, Tim and I went downtown on our lunch break and cataloged the Occupy Maine library, a small collection housed at Portland’s Spartan Grill restaurant (which also serves a very tasty gyro).

Occupy Sacramento’s library is also up on LibraryThing, and we’ve been in touch with various other Occupy libraries; if your city’s library joins up, we’d love to know about it!

While you may agree or disagree with the Occupy movement as a whole, we think what they’re doing with books and libraries is simply awesome. And we’re very happy to be a part of it.

Labels: cataloging, flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, libraries

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

Help libraries damaged by Hurricane Irene

Author Kate Messner posted yesterday about serious damage suffered by the Wells Memorial Library in Upper Jay, NY from Hurricane Irene’s floodwaters. Almost their entire childrens’ book collection was soaked beyond salvage, and they could use donations of money or books to replace the lost titles.

We’re sure there are other libraries out there in the same situation, so we want to help however we can. I’ve set up a wiki page to track needs and how to help, and I’ve contacted librarians at various libraries in the Bahamas and the U.S. reported to have suffered damage from Irene. I’ll be updating the wiki page as I get new information, but others should feel free to add to it, or to email me (jeremy@librarything.com) with updates.

I’ll be sending copies of some of my favorite childrens’ books, as well.

Come discuss on Talk.

Labels: altruism, libraries, love

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

LibraryThing in embassy libraries

Did you know that the U.S. State Department helps organize and maintain libraries around the world? They are set up as Information Resource Centers at embassies and consulates, and as American Corners (partnerships between embassy Public Affairs sections and local host institutions). In Afghanistan, they’re known as Lincoln Learning Centers.

LibraryThing offers free lifetime status for these accounts, and so far more than a hundred diplomatic libraries have begun to catalog their resources using LT. Just a few of those include:

Other American Corner libraries getting their LT catalogs underway recently include a whole bunch in places like Khazakhstan, Serbia, and Fiji.

Just one of the many different uses being made of LibraryThing around the world!

Labels: cultural library, libraries

Monday, December 17th, 2007

¿Qué hay en tu estantería? (Spanish books)

Cataloging your Spanish-language books just got a lot easier. We already have user-translated Spanish language site, www.LibraryThing.es, our fourth-most popular site. But we didn’t have good Spanish sources.

So today I’ve added 20 Spanish sources, including a bookstore and nineteen libraries.

The bookstore, deastore.com, is an excellent source for recent books, popular paperbacks and cover images, mostly from Spain. Deastore is critical insofar as Amazon, our most-used source, has no Spanish or Latin American site, and few Spanish books. The libraries provide depth, including older books and–although all but one are from Spain itself–books from elsewhere in the Spanish-speaking world.

You can add sources to your options here. Here’s the complete list:

  • deastore.com
  • Biblioteca Central de La Rioja
  • Biblioteca de Castilla y Leon
  • Biblioteca Foral de Bizkaia
  • Biblioteca Pública de Avila
  • Biblioteca Pública de Burgos
  • Biblioteca Pública de Palencia
  • Biblioteca Pública de Salamanca
  • Biblioteca Pública de Segovia
  • Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes
  • Congreso de los Diputados
  • Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
  • Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
  • Universidad Complutense de Madrid
  • Universidad de Alcalá de Henares
  • Universidad de Alicante
  • Universidad de Burgos
  • Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED)
  • Universidad Politécnica de Madrid
  • Universidad Pública de Navarra

Did you make it this far? The first 25 people to write to tim@librarything.com from a Spanish-language email address (.es, .mx, .ar, etc) will get a free membership. (If you don’t have one, write to us in Spanish.) And for the next few days, if you run a Spanish-language blog, we’ll send you five memberships—to blog or just to give to friends.

Labels: libraries, new libraries, spanish, spanish books

Friday, December 14th, 2007

Hungary! Hungary!

LibraryThing is now open for Hungarian cataloging!

We’ve added two sources—the Hungarian National Library (Országos Széchényi Könyvtár) and the Hungarian National Shared Catalogue (Magyar Országos Közös Katalógus), a 17-library consortium which, if I understand correctly, includes the national library as well.*

We are looking forward to welcoming more Hungarians to LibraryThing. Our Hungarian-language site, hu.LibraryThing.com is at an advanced stage of translation. But we need your help. As we release each language, we realize how critical it is to build momentum. We’ve had success in Holland and Denmark because there were already active Dutch and Danish communities on LibraryThing, and because I knew a good many bloggers in both countries. So far, our Hungarian community has been small (114 members at last count) and I don’t know a single Hungarian blogger! So, if you want this to succeed, spread the word. Blog about it! Tell friends! Stand on a street corner!

Oh, and since you read down this far, how about a free account? The first 20 members who write to me from a .hu address** will get a free premium account. Just send me your member name to tim@librarything.com. If you run a blog in Hungarian, I’ll send you five more to give away to visitors.

*I’d love some clarification on this. We don’t have a bookstore yet—the way we’ve added Bol-Bruna for Dutch, and deastore.com for Italy. We’d love to add one. Update: Apparnetly, The National Library goes on siesta between 23:00-3:00 CET (GMT +1).
**If you’re a native Hungarian speaker in Romania or elsewhere, write me and we’ll work it out.

The flag image above is by Flickr user antenae, and is licensed under the Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Her profile lists here as “24, female, Budapest, Hungary.” Does she want a free membership?

Labels: hungarian, hungary, libraries, magyar, new libraries

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

Rijksmuseum Research Library

After yesterday’s announcement of four major Dutch-language sources, we got an email from someone at the Rijksmuseum Research Library, inviting us to add them too. We were happy to.

As anyone who’s been to the Netherlands knows, the Rijksmuseum (site, Wikipedia) is Amsterdam’s phenomenal art museum. The Research Library (site, Wikipedia) is apparently the largest art historical museum library in the Netherlands, housing some 140,000 monographs as well as serials and auction catalogs. It’s also first art-history library in LibraryThing, and should be useful for bibliophiles with art interests.

Labels: dutch books, libraries