Current Cites (Digital Library SunSITE)

Volume 5, no. 3, March 1994

Edited by Teri Andrews Rinne

The Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720
ISSN: 1060-2356  -

Contributors: Nathan Meyer, David Rez, Richard Rinehart, Teri Rinne, Roy Tennant

[ Multimedia and Hypermedia ] [ Networks and Networking ][ Optical Disc Technology ][ General ]

Multimedia and Hypermedia

Baker, Kim and Sunny "Grandma and Me & Photo CD" CD-ROM World 9(4) (April 1994):64-67. - This article will be useful to the small library or historical museum, or even to individuals. It shows how to become a multimedia CD-ROM author using only a normal PC, a CD-ROM drive capable of reading multisession Kodak Photo CDs, and a relatively inexpensive software product called "Create It," also by Kodak. The museum or library would not need much in the way of equipment or expertise, or even a scanner, because the presentation can be created using normal photos or film, and the Create It software, which are taken to any Kodak developer to put into Photo-CD format. This is a value-added way of displaying visual collections because unlike space-consuming wall-mounts, or film it allows user interaction through individual pacing and selection, and hyper-links between segments. -- RJR

Conway, Paul "Digitizing Preservation" Library Journal 119(2) (February 1, 1994):42-45. - This article, from the head of Yale's Open Book Project, explores the issues facing an institution on the verge of deciding to digitize part of its collection. He compares the advantages of digital imaging over microfilm: remote access and ease of use; as well as the disadvantages: cost and unknown longevity. One intelligent answer to the main obstacle, cost of equipment and expertise, is the formation of consortiums between university departments (such as Berkeley's Museum Informatics Project) or between universities (such as The Digital Preservation Consortium, mentioned in the article). The article is also useful in its partial listing of pilot imaging projects currently underway at public institutions around the country, mentioning as well the major corporate partners involved. The author warns that with the quick obsolescence of equipment (not to mention the raised expectations of patrons) that investment in digital imaging must be a continuing one. -- RJR

Sullivan, Jeffrey "Freebies of the Month: The 1993 CIA World Fact Book" Computer Shopper 14(4) (April 1994):616. - This 1600-card Hypercard stack is a freeware version of the comprehensive world affairs resource already available via many gopher services and on some commercial CD-ROMs. The main advantages, of course, is that it is free, and you don't need to dial up to use it each time. Having this tidbit of world info locally loaded allows library or school users added ease and speed of access, and would even allow them to take it home for use on a computer without a modem. (The article doesn't mention any specific Internet sites, so keep looking.) -- RJR

Networks and Networking

Billings, Harold, et al. "Remote Reference Assistance for Electronic Information Resources over Networked Workstations" Library Hi Tech Issue 45 12(1) (1994):77-86. - The objectives, problems and accomplishments of a grant funded project at the University of Texas Austin General Libraries are outlined in this very readable piece by Billings, et al. The Library set out to research, implement and evaluate the feasibility of an interactive online librarian. The objective was to allow the librarian to provide remote assistance and intervene (if requested) during and online search session; a sort of "pilot, copilot" interaction. This is one interesting and creative approach to providing reference services as more of our library, information and academic communities become flooded with electronic information. -- DR

Caplan, Priscilla "You Can't Get There From Here: E-prints and the Library" The Public-Access Computer Systems Review 5(1) (1994):20-24. [available via gopher URL:gopher://] - Pre-publication versions of articles or manuscripts (pre-prints) have long been important to scientists, and the electronic versions (e-prints) of these documents are making it much easier and faster for researchers to access this information. Caplan asserts that libraries can play an important role in collecting, organizing, and providing access to this information, as they do for print materials. -- RT

Coalition for Networked Information, "Electronic Billboards on the Digital Superhighway: A Report of the Working Group on Internet Advertising, Draft" March 18, 1994. [URL:] This short (18 page) document represents the thinking-to-date of CNI's Working Group on Internet Advertising. The paper starts with an overview of Internet culture as it has been, and proceeds to outline "other forces" at work presently, such as commerical access, commercial data services, and product vendors. Issues of free speech, consumer benefits (more "information rich" advertisements available as needed, not unsolicited), the types of ads presently found and ultimately desireable are discussed. In particular, the spectre (and probable reality) of a email box full of "junk email" is worth noting. Conclusion: no advertiser could resist the Internet as a source of customers and guidelines are in our (the netter's) best interest. -- NM

"EFF Statement on FBI Draft Digital Telephony Bill" EFFector Online 7(4) (February 24, 1994):n.p. - Available via anonymous FTP from [URL:] This short article outlines EFF's analysis of the Digital Telephony Bill and EFF's position with regard to the proposed legislation. EFF comes out strongly against the provisions of the bill, opining that it "lays the groundwork for turning the National Information Infra- structure into a nation-wide surveillance system" and radically ex- tends the state's access to information about electronic communications. EFF's critique revolves around the disparity between the invasive power of the FBI's proposed technologic and legal access and the lack of legal and technologic safe-guards of behalf of citizens. The article includes Internet pointers to relevant source documents and is well worth reading. -- NM

"Electronic Storefronts Open Doors for Server Services" The Internet Letter 1(6) (March 1, 1994) - An increasing number of companies are offering Internet server services, whereby a company can present its wares electronically to Internet users. This article describes four such outfits and the types of services they provide to other commercial organizations. Perhaps one of the most well known of these "electronic storefronts" is the Global Network Navigator by O'Reilly & Associates. Using World-Wide Web and Mosaic client access, O'Reilly presents services and products from a variety of companies. Although there are presently few takers for such services, it is likely that this is a growth industry. -- RT

Kalin, Sally "Collaboration: A Key to Internet Training" Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science 20(3) (February/March 1994):20-21. - The Penn State University Libraries handle the library staff Internet training issue through a cooperative effort with their university's Office of Computer and Information Systems. This approach has proved to be very successful and has helped create an evolving partnership between two disparate campus units. -- DR

McLaughlin, Pamela Whiteley "Embracing the Internet: The Changing Role of Library Staff" Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science 20(3) (February/March 1994):16-17. A narrative outline describing how the Syracuse University Library responded to the increasing demand on library professionals to understand and navigate the expanding volume of information available in an electronic form. -- DR

Reinhardt, Andy "Building the Data Highway" BYTE 19(3) (March 1994):46-74. - If you read one article on the Internet this month, make it this one. Reinhardt identifies all the key players, protocols, and policies that are in the process of trying to create the highly publicized "information superhighway." Ranging from technical details to federal legislation, Reinhardt steers clear of the kind of overwrought hyperbole that tends to blemish other stories on this topic, while providing an insightful and informative overview of the challenges and opportunities relating to the creation of a national information infrastructure. Highly recommended. -- RT

Tennant, Roy "Tips & Techniques for Internet Trainers" Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science 20(3) (February/ March 1994):22-24. - A good overview and introduction for the potential Internet trainer. Tennant, an experienced Internet instructor, offers practical information that will prove valuable to the new Internet trainer. Advice on focus, preparation and presentation is outlined with particular attention paid to preparation. -- DR

Tetzeli, Rick "The Internet and Your Business" Fortune 129(5) (March 7, 1994):86-96. - This article describes a number of ways that businesses, both large and small, are using the Internet. Although not many companies are making much money over the Internet now, nonetheless many are banking on it becoming a lucrative new market. When Fortune starts paying attention to the Internet, you can bet that the 500 largest companies that it identifies each year won't be far behind. -- RT

Tuss, Joan "Roadmaps to the Internet: Finding the Best Guidebook for Your Needs" Online 18(1) (January 1994):14-26. - The number of books published on or about the Internet is rapidly growing as popular interest and use increases. Tuss has reviewed and selected eleven of the "best books about the Internet." She has critiqued and organized the books according to user focus: those who have not yet but want to access the Internet, those who are using the Internet and want to do more and those who want to teach about the Internet. The strengths and substance of each of the eleven books are outlined as well as the author's recommendations for those looking for information on a particular Internet subtopic. -- DR

Zakon, Robert H'obbes' "Hobbes' Internet Timeline" posted to NETTRAIN@UBVM.BITNET on March 17, 1994. [available by sending a message to] The best single listing of dates and events relating to the Internet that I have seen. It goes from the very birth of packet switching in the 1960's up to the first Internet-connected White House. -- RT

The publication of the online journal Internaut marks an interesting milestone in the history of publishing. This journal is made freely available on the Internet in a compressed file of HTML-marked up documents and associated image files. Users of NCSA Mosaic, a client program for accessing Internet servers of many different varieties (World-Wide Web, Gopher, FTP, etc.), can uncompress the Internaut files and view them via Mosaic in a user-friendly point-and-click mode. The premier issue of Internaut includes articles on the beginnings of the Internet and the Community Memory Project, Cable Internet (cited below), and other topics as well as links to online resources (e.g., TCP/IP software for but it is clear that Internaut stands well enough on its own. [URL:]. -- RT

Aboba, Bernard "Understanding Cable Internet" Internaut 1 (1994):n.p. - Aboba describes how the coaxial cable that pipes signals to your TV can be harnessed to bring the Internet to your computer instead. But read the article before dashing out in search of the magic cable converter with which to accomplish this feat. It's harder (and possibly more expensive) than you may think.

Aboba, Bernard "Understanding Information Ecology" Internaut 1 (1994):n.p. - A free-ranging and thought-provoking essay on networking, its impact on our lives and perhaps more importantly the impact that we all have on each other as we scramble to get our piece of the bandwith pie. Barry Commoners "Tragedy of the Commons" as it applies to the Internet.

Cerf, Vinton and Bernard Aboba "How the Internet Came to Be" Internaut 1 (1994):n.p. - Aboba's transcription of Cerf's account of the beginnings of the Internet.

Felsenstein, Lee and Bernard Aboba "How Community Memory Came to Be" Internaut 1 (1994):n.p. - Felsenstein describes to Aboba the beginnings of an interesting project to bring electronic communications to an entire San Francisco Bay Area community.

Optical Disc Technologies

Campbell, David K. and Kraig Proehl "Optical Advances" BYTE 19(3) (March 1994):107-116. - Campbell and Proehl explain why MO (magneto-optical storage) is "poised to shake off its 'slow-moving' image." Today's 1.3-GB capacity for 5.25-inch MO technology is expected to double before 1995, again before 1996, and once more before 1998, jumping to a 10.4-GB capacity in less than four years. MO is seen as the perfect solution for storage-hungry applications such as image management, network data management, online archives, and unattended backups. -- TR

Gunning, Kathleen, et. al. "Networked Electronic Information Systems at the University of Houston Libraries: The IRIS Project and Beyond" Library Hi Tech Issue 44 11(4) (1993):49-55, 83. - This article describes an innovative grant-funded project undertaken in 1989 by the University of Houston Libraries in which an experimental Intelligent Reference Information System (IRIS) was built. The IRIS project established a ten-workstation CD-ROM network that provided access to 19 CD-ROM databases, and developed an expert system to recommend reference sources. In 1992, the Libraries initiated a new project to replace the IRIS network infrastructure, expand the number of networked workstations, increase the number of networked CD-ROM databases, offer remote access to CD-ROMs, and provide access to new types of network resources, such as electronic serials and OPACs on the Internet. Future plans will be to continue to explore new technologies in an effort to build a comprehensive electronic information system that offers access to diverse types of networked information both within the library and from users' offices, dorms, and homes. -- TR

Nicholls, Paul and Pat Ensor "Ten Significant CD-ROM Developments in 1993" Computers in Libraries 14(2) (February 1994):48-51. - Industry experts Nicholls and Ensor recap what has been deemed a "watershed" year for CD-ROM. Rounding out their top ten list: CD-ROM hits the mainstream, installed base and implementation, CD-Recordable, multimedia, publishing, network licensing, trade publications, retail distribution, software distribution on CD-ROM, and declining hardware and software prices. -- TR


Lippert, Margret "Continuing Computer Competence: A Training Program for the '90s" Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science 20(3) (February/March 1994):18-19. - A brief description of how the Engineering and Science Libraries at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology deal with training library staff in computer competence. Because more and more library materials are becoming available in electronic format, the libraries at MIT chose a comprehensive, twenty-class series to train their staff in most nearly every facet of computing in a library. -- DR

Current Cites 5(3) (March 1994) ISSN: 1060-2356 Copyright (C) 1995 by the Library, University of California, Berkeley. All rights reserved.

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