Friday, February 29, 2008

Employment Trends in the Wireless Telecom Industry

Students in a MKT3000 class that I taught this morning are doing industry research and one of the questions they need to answer is how many are employed in the industry and is the industry growing? For the wireless telecom industry both the government regulator, the FCC, and the industry trade group, the CTIA, publish surveys that are data rich and include emplyment data. The FCC report is called "Trends in Telephone Service." The CTIA report is the "Semi-Annual Wireless Industry Survey."

Another way to approach this question is to use data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You will find industry-specific data in their report on Employment, Hours and Earnings from the Current Employment Statistics Survey. Go to the BLS Data page, find this report, and use the icon to "Create Customized Tables (One Screen)." Then just follow the steps.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Conference Board offers New Graduates' Workforce Readiness Report

The Conference Board has issued a new report, "New Graduates' Workforce Readiness:
The Mid-Market Perspective," which may be found by accessing the Conference Board in our databases. Among the key findings are "Deficiencies in basic writing and foreign language skills persist among college graduates, and deficiencies linger in written communications, leadership and professionalism/work ethic at the college graduate level." The report, R-1413-08-RR is by Jill Casner-Lotto and Henry Silvert.

Trial - Oxford Scholarship Online

Oxford Scholarship Online combines OUP's core scholarly books in thirteen subject areas: Economics/Finance, Political Science, Religion, Philosophy, Literature, History, Classics, Psychology, Linguistics, Physics, Mathematics, Biology, and Business/Management (bringing the total number of scholarly monographs available 1,973.

We are considering this as a purchase so please take a look.

New Reference Titles

Since I always have a look at the new reference books when they come down from collections, I'd like to start sharing some of the new titles with you. Just recently we received:

The American Freshman: Forty Year Trends (REF LB 2343.32 .A44 2007)
Data from the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at the University of California that reports on the CIRP Freshman Study of the "changing nature of students' characteristics, aspirations, values, attitudes, expectations, and behaviors." One thing they look at is the trends in technology use of entering Freshmen.

SIFMA Yearbook 2007-2008 (Index Table 5B)
SIFMA, the Securities Industry and Financial Market Association, is the new name of the Securities Industry Association (SIA). This is a directory of their members and an excellent source for job hunters as it names the department heads at local securities firms. It also includes rankings of the largest firms and a list of member firms with publicly-traded stock.

The Global Competitiveness Report (REF HF 1414 .G559 2007/2008)
Reports on the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) that measures over 100 indicators of productivity for 131 countries. The index doesn't just look at business conditions but examines infrastructure, public institutions and government inefficiency, the economy, and education. This book is published by the World Economic Forum and you can find more information and an interactive version at their website.

Factiva Adds New Content

According to the latest press release from Proquest, Factiva added more than 500 new publications in 2007. Some examples:

  • The Wall Street Journal Online was released as a separate source. Previously, articles from were available as part of source The Wall Street Journal
  • Washington which features unique content that does not appear in the print edition of The Washington Post
  • Japan: 18 new sources, including The Japan Securities Journal , The Shinano Mainichi Shimbun and news services from Dow Jones and Kyodo
  • Industry publications from Business Monitor International
  • Russia: 24 new sources added, and multiple sources reactivated. In Russian, new sources include IPO News and Comments , M&A News and Comments and sources from RBC and English-language content from Interfax , one of Russia's leading news agencies.
  • Al Jazeera , a Qatar-based channel of reference for Middle Eastern events and sources from Israel, Jordan and Lebanon
Proquest also announced that in the first half of 2008, the web content of Factiva will increase dramatically from 4,000 sites and blogs to more than 12,000 web sites and 4,000 blogs featuring well-known and respected global news and business sources. Examples of top sites world-wide include CNN, and the BBC.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Login/Logout on Public PCs

Recently, there have been a lot of problems with logins on the public pcs. Students cannot login or logout.

When logging onto public pcs, users should ONLY be clicking on the Explorer icon on the desktop NOT the login/logout icon.

If the bluesocket logout window has been closed and you cannot logout, click on the login/logout icon on the desktop. You MUST change the IP address in the browser address window in order to access the bluesocket logout window. If you do not change the IP address, the previous user remains logged on.

If the IP address ends in 10, change it to 11. If the IP address ends in 11, change it to 10. You will then get the bluesocket window which enables you to logout.

WorldCat has Started a Blog

The WorldCat Blog started February 18th. Here's what they say:

"Welcome to the WorldCat Blog! – a fun spot to read about what’s happening on and to share cool ways that people are using the site and their libraries."

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

books being held at circulation for SI professor

I took seven books that a CUNY-Staten Island professor, email address, left by the self-check machine to circulation where they are being held today. The professor left a note that he was in on Sunday and circulation was already closed. He said he would be in Tuesday for them. If he isn't, they will go back on the shelves.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Students asking about Reuters availability in the library

Tonight some students came to the reference desk and said they were told by the Subotnick Center that they could use Reuters in the library. I explained it was not yet working. They wanted to know when it would be; and suggested that the Subotnick Center should know the library's Reuters terminal isn't working yet.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Neighborhood news

I learned over the weekend from a member of the area community board that more NYU students are coming to the neighborhood. The high-rise apartment building under construction now at 3rd Avenue and 24-23rd Streets will be housing about 700+ NYU students with some commercial space on the street level.

Student reports problem with pages printed on student printer

A student in Economics 3250 came to the reference desk to complain about the poor quality of prints coming from the student printer. She showed me numerous pages that were "dirty" and also pages in which the first lines were not readable, or did not print. She said it was from a file that her professor put on Blackboard. The documents include one called "Group Project." I told her that I would make a help desk report, which I have done.

ehraf collections change names and look

eHRAF Collection of Archaeology is now eHRAF Archaeology, and
eHRAF Collection of Ethnography is now eHRAF World Cultures.

They have a totally new look and new URLs too in case you have those saved.

Monday, February 18, 2008

S&P Shariah compliant indices

Recently I saw a reference to Standard & Poor's Shariah compliant indexes, most of which started in 2006 and 2007. Shariah is Islamic canonical law which observant Muslims follow in their daily lives. Certain investments and practices are allowed, others, such as charging interest, are not. There is increased interest in such investments and this method of finance.

Standard and Poor's offers an explanation about their methodology and screening of possible investments. A general search for Shariah on the S&P website will retrieve other explanations.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Suggestions for house plans from 1960s

Thursday night a student asked at the reference desk for help in locating house plans from the 1960s, and information about home designs of the time. I located a few articles, and also display ads in the New York Times. In case this is a repeat question:

My parents built their home in 1960 in Iowa and my mom provided me with the dimensions of the house, which is a typical "ranch home" of the time.

Using Google Advance, I found the following web sites:

This one shows images of the homes and also the floor plans with dimensions. (The names of home styles are in the left.)

Friday, February 15, 2008

Web of Science - PyscArticles - Problem

I received a call the other day from a grad student who was searching for Psychology articles in the Web of Science database. He was accessing the database on campus. He would do a search, and click on the full text button of some results. This brought him into PsycArticles Direct, where he was given an abstract and presented with the option to get the full text in pdf. When he clicks on this option, he's brought to a PsycArticle login screen that requests a name and password, and he's not allowed to proceed any further.

I tried this on the ref desk yesterday and was able to proceed, but got an error message that the pdf file was corrupted and not viewable. I just tried it again now from my office, and get the same screen that the student did.

I know we can get directly to the PyscArticles database from our database page, but the student expressed frustration of having to go to multiple places, when the Web of Science says it does have this article as full text and doesn't provide a direct link to PsycArticles.

Any thoughts? The student did send me a screen shot, but it is too large to post here. You can recreate the search by going into Web of Science and doing an author search for Marlowe and Crowne. You will get four results. Click on the full text for the last article to see the login screen.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Student put Baruch ID card in photocopy machine--no sign about not doing it

A student put his Baruch ID card in the photocopy machine on the 2nd floor Thursday night. It got stuck. We used the tweezers Alfredo has to get it out. The student pointed out that there is a sign not to use the old copy card but there is no notice about not using Baruch ID cards. It appeared he was a new student and it is an assumption that might be made as on many campuses ID cards are used (or at least the numbers on the card) for photocopies.

The student printer and a loose electric power cable

The one student printer that was working Thursday night quit 5 minutes before the late evening classes were to start. Ten students were waiting for print jobs. A student said it shut off by itself. The electric power cable had become loose at the printer. Fortunately it started working again when it was pushed in a little. Something to check when you are trying to think what could be wrong. The printer was also very hot.

Accounting professor says thanks re: syllabus left at the reference desk by student

Dr. Michael Palley, who is teaching Acc 3202 Accounting Information Systems, thanks the library for watching out for the student who left the syllabus at the reference desk. He told me that the syllabus is available online so we don't need to hold it any longer.


Comment about a missing notebook

Thursday night Shayna Skarf came to the reference desk, with one of our security officers. She had called earlier Thursday about a blue hardcover notebook that she had left in the library.

She said someone told her it would be here. Ms. Skarf told the person earlier that she would get the notebook Friday, but she came instead on Thursday night.

We (Yvette and I) were been unable to find it and lost and found did not have it. Only after double checking with circulation was it located there. (Kay, the security officer, and Shayna also searched the fifth floor for the notebook.)

I am now wondering if Shayna spoke with someone in circulation rather than in reference but she said she had spoken to someone in reference.

If so, please post information in the future about such arrangements. It saves time and a lot of worries. The notebook contained dissertation research.

Thanks, Rita

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Book being held at reference desk for pick up Thursday morning

Stanton brought a book, written by Helmut Dahm, Vladimir Solovyev and Max Scheler...that is to be picked up Thursday morning. I put it to the side of the reference desk where the "holds" are usually placed.


2008 Elections - Census Bureau

The Census Bureau has published a web page dedicated to the 2008 elections. You can get a population overview for each state as well stats on voter turnout from the 2004 election. The Bureau also provides links to other relevant data that covers voter turnout, election data from the Statistical Abstract, and other state rankings.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Problem with Westlaw Campus Research

Several students reported in chat reference sessions today that they were unable to work with Westlaw Campus Research. Trying to access from off campus today, I encountered the following:
  1. I was able to log in remotely
  2. I was able to enter my search query in Westlaw
  3. Instead of seeing my search results displayed, I saw instead a Westlaw page asking me to login.

Not sure if this is just a remote access problem or something more global in our Westlaw access.

Monday, February 11, 2008

ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award

This year’s winners of the ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award were announced recently. McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario won in the University Library category with an interesting remake of their library. A new University Librarian and the creation of seven new librarian positions lead to a shift to what they call “Library Service 2.0 @ MAC.” Details are in their application along with information on liaison programs with the faculty and pictures of their new information commons.

Accounting and Auditing Resources

The Feb 2008 issue of the C&RL News Internet Column is about Accounting and Auditing Resources. Librarians in the reference practicum recently reviewed our accounting databases and discussed how to approach various kinds of accounting and auditing questions. This guide takes a different approach and surveys associations, enforcement agencies, blogs and internet portals. It points out an accounting guide, Ten Steps to Accounting Research, at the University of Florida Library. The guide was written by Peter Z. McKay, Business Librarian, who spoke about the Smathers Library website at UF at a recent CUBL meeting at the SLA conference.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

New Call Number Maps

You might have noticed that at the reference desk we have new simplified call number maps. Use these (instead of scrap paper) to write out the title and call number of books and give to students to guide them to the stacks.

Thank you to Joann Huang for the design work.

CPA exam review books being moved from ref to reserve

The CPA exam review books, previously in reference, are have their catalog records revised. Those from 2004 on will now be in reserve. Prior to 2004 (when the CPA exam changed) are in the stacks. The change is being made in part because one of the volumes in reference was destroyed. (The front and back cover and bar code number are all that remain.) Reserve offers more control. The change is being worked on now.

Wasserman/Subotnick Tutorials and User's Guides

Wasserman/Subotnick tutorials and user's guides are available through their Blackboard community. Instructions on how to enroll in the Wasserman Blackboard Community and accessing the tutorials are available on the Wasserman site (or follow this link).

What will you find there? Workshop handouts for Reuters and Bloomberg and other workshops held at the Wasserman Trading Floor, and other tutorials/user's guides.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The Recession Question

In anticipation of students researching the recession question, we might want to have this report handy. On January 23rd the Congressional Research Service (CRS) issued a four page report, "What is a Recession, Who Decides When it Starts, and When Do They Decide?" The commonly accepted definition of a recession as two consecutive quarterly declines in GDP is not the one used by economists. They rely on NBER for the official definition and the dating of recessions in the U.S. Recently the NBER dating committee clarified the definition by emphasizing that recessions require a downturn to be apparent in many economic activities at about the same time.

Their definition:
A recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in real GDP, real income, employment, industrial production, and wholesale-retail sales.

The report includes the dates of all business cycle turning points (recessions and expansions) since 1980 and the date they were announced by NBER. It can be months or even in some cases more than a year after the start that the committee announces the date of the beginning of a recession.

So while waiting for the official NBER dating, what data can we use to forecast the likelihood of a recession? The House Joint Economic Committee explains a new approach in a report on the Employment Recession Probability Index.

Reuters Certification Program

Richard Holowczak, Director of the Subotnick Center, just told me that Reuters has revamped its "Certification" program. It is similar to what Bloomberg has with a few important differences.

  • There are self-paced instruction guides for various topics
  • There will be on-line tutorials and video classes on various topics
  • There will be a lot of emphasis on creating spreadsheets using XMS models
  • The qualifying exam will be proctored by a Reuters employee who would periodically come to campus to administer the exam.

More details should be coming soon.

State of Green Business 2008 report is available

The recently released State of Green Business 2008 report is available for free.

Ipods movie rentals and accounting standards--another impact of Sarbanes-Oxley example?

Ipods and accounting standards are probably two things you don't consider at the same time.

However, according to several news sources, including this one, Sarbanes-Oxley may be one of the reasons 5G iPOD movie rentals may not be happening soon. (This also might be a good example of why product enhancements need to considered by all departments in a corporation.)

America: History and Life and Historical Abstracts

I have moved these two databases to the EBSCO platform.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Audit Analytics now has "create a company profile report"

The database Audit Analytics now offers a "create a company profile report" in which you may select (or unselect) from a wide variety of options. The "create a company profile report" appears once you have logged onto the database, and after you do a company lookup either by Ticker or CIK lookup. For example, if you want to learn the executive compensation of Verizon executives, you can search by VZ, and then create a report, that can be saved in Word. As previously, you can save search results from their other filters in Excel or word, and you can save many results at once.

Audit Analytics offers personal training on the database. If you are interested, you can contact them.

Monday, February 04, 2008

A library to consider for more than horticulture

Last week the METRO Green Libraries SIG meeting was hosted by Katherine Powis, the librarian at the Horticultural Society of New York. The library, in the midst of the Garment District, is open to the public. (You can also join the society, which includes the use of the library.)

And, it isn't only a place to learn about horticulture and plants. Katherine mentioned that they help many artists who are drawing plants and designers. She explained that it is a source of "hidden histories". The society was founded in 1900, an era of few large estates that employed gardeners, frequently from England, who trained American gardeners who developed their own styles, which are reflected in the articles. She said some of the articles in the bound volumes contain not kind references to others.

Since the 1960s, the Horticultural Society has been active in outreach to public libraries and to prisoners, including women and men at Rikers Island. "Horticultural therapy," which including working with plants, helps those with emotional problems and physical disabilities, in their recoveries, and their library collection includes this subject. She also suggested that their children's collection is a quick way to learn the basics about some plants and gardening.

The library is beautifully designed so it is a place to keep in mind for future reference. They have an active speakers program too.

Battle of Lexington Ave this Thursday

The Super Bowl victory by the Giants is not the only sports event this week. On Thursday, during the Battle of Lexington Ave, the Baruch Bearcats meet the Hunter Hawks. I went last year and really enjoyed the game and the fun event. This morning the security guard encouraged me to attend as it is so much fun. I'll be working the reference desk, but I would encourage you to attend if you can.

ISI Web of Knowledge

We now have access to ISI Web of Knowledge from our database page -- we now have access to the Science citation index expanded from 1900 to the present , Social sciences citation index from 1956 to the present, and Arts & humanities citation index from 1975 to the present. Please inform faculty!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Visit from the Bloomberg Rep

Harry and I met with Baruch's Bloomberg rep yesterday afternoon. In addition to changing some of the "look" of the Bloomberg terminal with more tabs, an auto complete search feature and more sophisticated charting, Bloomberg has added several new content areas. Bloomberg added pages for Law (BLAW) that feature litigation summaries for companies; pages for Pharmaceuticals (BDRUG) that feature information on company patents and clinical trials; and pages on Real Estate (BRE) that include property and tenant profiles and a search of commercial property. They have also built a page on the Worldwide Credit Crunch (WWCC). The rep promoted the Bloomberg Career Center(JOBS) and encouraged students to post their resumes there.

Le Grand Robert

Students in a French class have been asking for a French-French dictionary. I spoke to the professor who wants his students to use the Dictionnaire Robert (full title - Dictionnaire Alphabetique et Analogique de la Langue Francaise). This standard six volume work is in our reference collection at PC2625 .R552.

Welcome our Reference Intern

This week a second student joined us in our Reference Internship program. Alta de Lara is a student at Pratt. She has a BA in Music from Hunter and many years of experience working in executive search and recruitment. Presently she works part-time for Focalyst, the market research arm of the WPP Group. Alta will be with us on Tuesdays and Fridays.


The Chronicle has recently had a few articles dealing with the textbook quandary.
Yesterday, they described the current bill in Congress "House Bill Proposes Disclosure Rules to Control Textbook Prices", and today there is an article "One Way to Rein In Textbook Costs: Make Them Free", that proposes an alternative to the problem.