Daily Archives: February 9, 2015

Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps display

By Heather Ross, supervisor, Social Sciences Library and Donald W. Hamer Maps Library

sanborn map

The Sanborn collection is heavily used by patrons. — photo by Heather Ross

Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps were designed to help underwriters to estimate risk without having to see the buildings in person. These historic maps have so many uses for today’s researchers. Stop down to the Donald W. Hamer Maps Library to see the display.


A close up of one of the posters on display

Download the posters here: https://psu.box.com/SanbornDisplay

View and edit Office files in Google Chrome

Submitted by Ryan Johnson, technology training coordinator

extensionIf you are at home or on a computer without Microsoft Office you can view and Edit Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files in Google Chrome with a new extension.

Once the Office Editing for Docs, Sheets & Slides Extension for Google Chrome is installed, Office files that you drag into Chrome, open in Gmail, Google Drive, and more, will be opened in Docs, Sheets, and Slides for viewing and editing.

You can save each file back to its original Office format, or convert it to Docs, Sheets, or Slides to unlock more features, like inviting others to edit with you, commenting, chat, and more.

If you want to see a quick video tutorial on how this works, watch this YouTube Video from Google.

Data Learning Center overview and future initiatives brown bag

February 11, 2015, noon–1:00 p.m., Mann Assembly Room

Learn how the University Libraries Data Learning Center assist students, staff, and faculty in transforming data into information! This session will introduce you to the services and staff of the Data Learning Center. We will provide you with insight into how our service interactions work and our relationship to other units both within and external to the library.

Presenters: Stefanie Austin, Tara LaLonde, Nathan Piekielek, and Stephen Woods

All library employees are welcome to attend. This session will be offered via Adobe Connect for
those who would like to participate virtually.

Adobe Connect Session: https://meeting.psu.edu/ssltraining/

LHR News: Feb. 9

Please join us in welcoming the following new hires:

Audrey Bencel, Interlibrary Loan
Adriel Gonzalez, Commons Services
Michelle Lovell, Commons Services
Zachariah Mann, Penn State Berks

FAFSA and Scholarships presentation

“FAFSA and Scholarships” will be presented Wednesday, February 18, 5:30–6:30 p.m., in Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library.

Get help unraveling the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in this workshop, part of the Money Counts: a Financial Literacy Series, a collaborative effort of the Penn State Commission for Adult Learners and the University Libraries.

Each year, students and parents complete the FAFSA to be considered for financial aid from the federal government, and in most instances, additional money from the state in which they reside and the college they want to attend. That’s why the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is so important—it is the gateway to three potentially big sources of financial aid from federal, state, and college entities. If you don’t complete a FAFSA, you could be missing out on a lot of financial aid, including potential scholarships. In this workshop, Penn State Financial Literacy Manager, Dr. Daad Rizk will help students review the Financial Aid Process, understand the FAFSA application and explore options to find scholarships to finance education.

Refreshments will be provided. Additional details are online at http://bit.ly/1rzz1Jw. Registration is available online at http://bit.ly/16yTesX.

Researcher examines resource struggle in South African nature reserve

“Forest Food Fight! Gender, Indigenous Knowledge and the Struggle for Resources at the Dwesa-Cwebe Nature Reserve in South Africa” will be presented on February 25, at noon, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library. Katie Tavenneris, a dual-degree PhD candidate in rural sociology and women’s studies, will present the seminar, which will focus on the gender-differentiated knowledge and valuation associated with forest foods, the politics of everyday resistance and the possibility for resource co-management at the Dwesa-Cwebe Nature Reserve. It is free and open to the public and can be viewed online.


Tavenneris… awarded a U.S. Borlaug Fellowship in Global Food Security in 2013

For over 100 years, the communities adjacent to the Dwesa and Cwebe Forests have been caught in a conflict over natural resources. Residents were forcibly removed from the area for decades by colonial and apartheid-era governments. After being declared a nature reserve in 1978, locals lost all access to natural resources. Although the communities won a land-claim battle in 2001, local people are prohibited from harvesting natural resources, including a variety of forest foods. Remarkably, the indigenous knowledge associated with these foods endures through the stories, actions and resistance of local women.

In 2013, Tavenneris was awarded a U.S. Borlaug Fellowship in Global Food Security and was a visiting researcher at Bioversity International in Rome. Her research interests include international development, natural resource management, biodiversity conservation, feminist theory, and rural social and agrarian change.

This seminar is co-sponsored by the University Libraries and the Interinstitutional Consortium for Indigenous Knowledge. For more information, see icik.psu.edu. If you have question about access accommodations, please contact Helen Sheehy at hms2@psu.edu or 814-863-1347.

Drupal migration update

The Drupal migration project continues to move forward. Web Implementation Management Team (WIMT) chair Binky Lush and lead web developer Charlie Morris conducted a short presentation recently to highlight the progress that has been made to date. (Their presentation was part of the February 3 Tech Update and can be viewed on MediaSite Live.) The presentation outlined the following areas:

  1. Drupal development: Morris is leading the technology portion of the migration. The three other web developers are Wayne Ellenberger, Andrew Calvin and Karen Schwentner. Currently, this group is working on migrating the following
    sites: ICIK, the Pennsylvania Center for the Book, The People’s Contest and
    ASEE Community Engagement Division. The look and feel of the old sites will be maintained, although the design will now be responsive (i.e. can be viewed
    correctly on any device).
  2. Timeline and migration schedule: The entire Drupal implementation will be conducted over two years. A migration order has been planned and dates will be set soon.
  3. Content strategy: A full content inventory of the Libraries’ 10,000-plus webpages was conducted and it was found that some content was duplicative, no longer relevant, or out-of-date. During the migration process, WIMT will consider analytics, do usability testing, and re-work pages for functionality as needed. In the long term, WIMT will be responsible for developing a strategic vision for the Libraries’ site, including the policies and guiding principles for creating pages.
  4. LibGuides: LibGuides will replace the current guides. Helen Smith led a forum on LibGuides, which can be viewed on MediaSite Live.
    If you have questions, please email UL-wimt@lists.psu.edu. For more information on WIMT see the previous blog post: “Team to guide Drupal implementation.”

Events: Feb. 9 and beyond

February 11, noon–1:00 p.m.: Data Learning Center overview, Mann Assembly Rm and online: Adobe Connect Session: https://meeting.psu.edu/ssltraining/

February 12, 2015 10:00 a.m.: Introduction to SelectSurvey. See TechSmart for location and details. Want to learn more about the survey tool for the libraries? Everyone at the University Libraries has access to SelectSurvey. In this Introductory class, you will learn basic survey creation, management and deployment.

February 18, 5:30 p.m.: “FAFSA and Scholarships,” Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library.

February 19, 10:00–11:00 a.m.: Library Research Basics. W315 Pattee Library. Learn how to find books, articles and other materials in your research area or major by using the Libraries’ online databases. You will also discover library services that can help streamline your research process. Individuals not affiliated with Penn State can register by calling 814-865-9257. To register, go to http://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/lls/classes/research_basics_seminar.html.

February 24, 11:15 a.m.: Penn State Laureate Susan Russell presents “Thanks, Mrs. Sawyer: How My First Grade Teacher is Helping Me Translate 21st Century Education,” Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library.

February 25, noon: Forest Food Fight! Gender, Indigenous Knowledge and the Struggle for Resources at the Dwesa-Cwebe Nature Reserve in South Africa, Foster Aud. Presented by Katie Tavenneris, dual-degree PhD candidate in rural sociology and women’s studies. View online.

February 26, 9:30 a.m.: Creating Accessible Word and PowerPoint Documents in Office 13
See TechSmart for location and details. In this session, you will discover best practices to create accessible Microsoft Word and PowerPoint documents (updated for Office 13). Whether you create website content or just email and share documents with staff, creating accessible Office files is very important. This session will cover the basic techniques needed to optimize your content for accessibility.

March 2, 10:00–11:30 a.m., Endnote, W23 Pattee. EndNote can be used to search online bibliographic databases, organize references, images and PDFs in any language and create bibliographies and figure lists instantly. Attend one of these seminars to learn how to get the most out of EndNote. To register, go to http://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/lls/classes/research_basics_seminar.html

March 5, 10:00–11:30 a.m.: Mendeley. 302 Paterno Library. Mendeley is a free reference manager and academic social network that can help you organize your research library, collaborate with others online and discover other relevant papers based on what you are reading. To register, go to http://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/lls/classes/research_basics_seminar.html.

March 18, 3 p.m.: Women Don’t Ask. Book talk discussion session with author Sara Laschever, Foster Aud.


** Also see “Training and Enrichment Opportunities” for additional staff events.