California Wines, the Planets, Modern Arabic, & More | Reference Reviews, November 15, 2014 Issue

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A starting point for exploring the world of California wines but not essential; a handy volume packed with the latest scientific observational analysis; a useful dictionary for scholars and interpreters; a massive, up-to-date undertaking on the field of information science and technology.

Q&A: Thomas Leitch | Reference 2015

Wikipedia U

Thomas Leitch’s Wikipedia U: Knowledge, Authority, and Liberal Education in the Digital Age (Johns Hopkins, 2014; see review, LJ 11/1/14, p. 91) examines ideas surrounding accuracy and authority in the academy today and challenges what readers think they know about Wikipedia, its contributors, and its users. Via email, Leitch recently answered some questions about his new title.

Short-Term Loan, Long-Term | Reference 2015

Not for the first time, librarians and publishers are confronting what can feel like an impasse. The system of short-term loan (STL) of e-monographs, which was conceived as a form of digital interlibrary loan (ILL), is seen by many libraries as the only way they can afford to provide such materials and by many publishers as the beginning of the end of their business.

Researchers’ Advisory | Reference 2015 How-To

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Librarians and library users have a variety of ­resources to turn to for their information needs: Internet search engines such as Google, common or institutional knowledge, the physical collection, and electronic databases. For public libraries, the term database describes a searchable collection of electronic records to which a library subscribes. It may also be used more generally to describe other electronic or Internet-based resources the library pays for, such as language learning or résumé-building sites. Access to and successful use of these resources is rarely intuitive and often frustrating for library patrons, who may be unaware of their existence until the moment of need.

Best Databases 2014

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This year’s best database roundup, as nominated by LJ’s readers, includes an intriguing mix of the tried-and-true as well as upstarts on their way to finding a place in all librarians’ toolkits. The members of our profession have always welcomed fresh ways of finding information and helping patrons, and the resources listed below offer useful, absorbing, and in some cases attractive avenues to explore along with some new ways to assist.

American Consumer Culture: Market Research and American Business, 1935–1965; Global Plants | Reference eReviews

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A database of documents that are intended to “collect, preserve, and interpret the unfolding history of American enterprise.” A digital library of plant specimens from around the world.

Bibles for Bonsai, Spice and Herbs; Moderate Islam, Plus Short Takes | Reference Reviews

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A high-level overview of what one needs to know to choose and grow a bonsai with success, a beautiful volume that covers herbs and spices with a personal touch, a valuable resource on Native American history, a moderate view of Islam.

China: Reference eReviews

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As of July 2014, China continues to be the world’s most populous country. The resources we examine here focus on the China of today and look at the country’s past, from China Data Online to Policing the Shanhai International Settlement, 1894–1945.

Barsanti on Film, Liebman on Health & Fitness, U.S. Birth & Death Rates | Reference Reviews

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­Liebman’s no-nonsense title goes back to the basics, educating users on how to do specific exercises; Vital Statistics of the United States is a core title that is ideal for ready-reference collections.

What to Keep in Mind When Conducting a Reference Interview

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by Dave Harmeyer Some of the tips to remember when improving your reference interview skills go back to basics. They begin with studying the approaches that your patrons have to the library. We may assume that patrons want to find information themselves, usually on the Internet. But by the time they make the effort to […]