National Library Week Events

Here at the Salmon Library, we have two primary events going on as part of this year’s National Library Week (April 12 through 18).

The first is our National Library Week Photo Contest. The rules are fairly simple:

  1. Take a photo of the Library, in the Library, or somehow otherwise dealing with the Salmon Library.
  2. Either email it to me (, or post it online in one of three ways:
    • Twitter! Tweet us the photo @uahlibrary and/or hashtag your photo with #nationallibraryweekUAH.
    • Instagram! Post your photo @uahlibrary with the tag: #nationallibraryweekUAH.
    • Facebook! Post your photo to our Facebook page.
  3. Early next week, we’ll decide winners.

Photos submitted may be retweeted/shared/etc. Winners may show up on the Library blog and in our next newsletter. And while we’ll gladly take entries from all of our patrons (students, faculty, guests, and more), the prizes will be awarded to UAH students, only.

Our second week-long tie-in is a drive to have books donated to Books for Africa. We have a box in the library lobby, just bring by the books at any time!


April 09 Workshop: Oh The Cites You’ll See!

A researcher will often want to try to find articles in their field of study which are particularly useful to other scholars. But how can you find out which papers are more widely used? Join Michael Manasco and Ron Schwertfeger on April 9th to find out more! Oh The Cites You'll See
Together, Ron and Michael will talk about Journal Citation Reports (JCR) and Scopus (two of the resources available through the UAH Library to help you with your research needs). This session will take place in Room 214 of the UAH Salmon Library, at 12 noon on April 9th.

This session is open to everyone! UAH faculty, staff and students are encouraged to bring their own laptops or tablets, as there will be some practice exercises.

Click here if you need directions to the library from off-campus.

Refined Researchers at a Glance

Three-in-One, From Graphic Novels in Education to Free Science Resources to the History and Future of the Book: March 31, April 1, and April 2

Hello, all!

We have three talks coming up at the Salmon Library, the week after Spring Break, that will cover three fun and important topics, and everyone is welcome.

Our “Three Talks, Three Subjects, One Week, One Place” (say it three times fast, it’s actually kind of easy!) extravaganza will cover topics from

  • graphic novels and comics in education, to
  • bad science reporting meets good free science resources, to
  • the future and history of the book.

We’ll have door prizes and snacks, and leave time for a forum discussion and question and answer. At a glance, here’s our poster for the events (which you might have seen around).

Individually, the three talks are as follows (click the title to see more information):

This Book has PICTURES In It!

(Tuesday, March 31. Library room 111. 5:30pm.) Michael Manasco will talk about comics and graphic novels both as a history of the art and more specifically in how they are used in education and the classroom. He will include tips and examples relevant to both educators and students, and a discussion of significant graphic novels.

Wide Weird Wacky World of Science Reporting

(Wednesday, April 1. Library room 111. 5:30pm.) An April Fool’s Day Special. Doug Bolden will look at not only how poorly some science reporting has fared (and some infamous science urban legends), but will also tell you how to find good quality science resources using the open web (and a few that are a little more locked down but easy to get to once you know how).

Welcome to the Future History of the Book

(Thursday, April 2. Library room 111. 5:30pm.) Doug Bolden returns to talk about the past and possible future of the book. This talk will examine the act of reading itself, and go into the disruptive nature of information technology (its destructive quality has been perhaps overstated). Doug will also attempt to explain how we are in the awkward teen stage of the digital text and include a discussion about the deceptively simple question, “What is a book?” [For those who spotted it, yes, this talk was originally planned for February 26. However, due to a couple weeks of snow and ice, it was cancelled and moved to April 2nd. You can still read my initial blog pot outlining questions I hope to address and deal with in it.]

If you want to contact Michael Manasco, you can do so at, and if you want to contact Doug Bolden, you can do so at

All three talks are part of our Refined Researchers series. Down below are individual graphics for them, as well as a flyer for the series as a whole. After them, we’ll have just two left. One, “Oh the Cites You’ll See”, will deal with citations, impact factors, and so forth. Then, another, “Online Job Hunting 101”, will talk about researching job opportunities online and the tools you need and how it differs from old school job hunting. More details on those are forthcoming.

New OVID Database trials from now until April 1st!

From now until April 1st, we have access to a free trial period of two of Ovid’s premier visual learning databases: Visible Body’s Anatomy & Physiology, and Visible Body’s Human Anatomy Atlas! Per Ovid’s website:

“Visible Body is a suite of online programs that cover anatomy, physiology, muscles, the skeleton and the circulatory system through interactive 3D models, animations, quizzes and more.”

These two resources are also optimized for use on iPads and Android devices; in fact, using a touch screen for certain features (navigating through layers of the body, etc.) provides a truly interactive experience.

View 3D visualizations with learning tools to explore the systems of the human body. Over 4,000 medically-accurate anatomical structures—developed by medically trained medical illustrators and vetted by leading anatomists—cover both systemic and regional anatomy. If you’re interested in detailed visualization of human anatomy, check out these tools for the month of March, and let us know what you think!

Click the links below to authenticate, or contact Michael Manasco, our Electronic Resources Librarian, at (256) 824-6965 or at for help with login access off campus.

Visible Body’s Anatomy & Physiology

Visible Body’s Human Anatomy Atlas


March 2015 Events at the UAH Library

There’s a lot going on at the M. Louis Salmon Library!  Here are some of our upcoming events for March, 2015:

March 04: Alumni Lunch & Learn / Refined Researcher Series “Accessing Government Statistical Information Online”

As a governmental data resource, statistical information is an important and valued source of information. Seth Porter will give a presentation covering the background of government statistics, accessing the most valuable resources for this information, and the importance of these resources and skills. This will be an overview of the best Open Source information sources. Join us at 11:30 AM-12:30 PM and learn about government statistics.  The free webinar version of this talk is open to all! Just use this link. 


March 10: Refined Researcher Series “Endnote II: The Endnote Strikes Back”

This talk expands upon Ron Schwertfeger’s workshop on the basic usage of Endnote, the premium citation manager.  This follow-up workshop goes beyond the tasks of adding and inserting citations to getting the most out of this program with increased interconnection and increased utility. This hands-on workshop will include such topics as:

  • Using groups, smart groups, and ratings to organize a hectic library
  • Sharing groups of references to collaborate with peers and classmates
  • Using Endnote with Activity Insight for tenure review

Come to Salmon Library room 111 on March 10th at 2:00 PM.  Bring your own device and follow along to become an Endnote ninja!


March 10: Moon Express – The Race Back to the Moon and The Future of Commercial Space Flight

Award winning inventor, entrepreneur, engineer, and educator Tim Pickens will be talking about the race back to the Moon and the future of commercial space flight. This event will take place at 5:30 PM-7:30 PM in Salmon Library Room 111. The agenda for the meeting will be as follows:

  •  5:30pm – Social Time
  • 6:00pm – Dinner
  • 6:30pm – Talk
  • 7:30pm – Close

You must RSVP by March 7th to attend; please contact Belinda Ong ( to RSVP.


March 12: Refined Researcher Series “Get Some CULTURE!”

Research in different cultures can be difficult due to problems such as the difference in meaning of common symbols/actions and due to the inherent issues of gathering people under occasional arbitrary constraints. Michael Manasco will demonstrate powerful research tools and how to overcome these elements on Thursday, March 12 at 12:00 PM- 12:45 PM in Salmon Library room 214. Focus will be given to eHRAF (electronic Human Relations Area File) for ethnographic research. This talk is open to all! Note: Some databases will require a UAH login.  Pizza and drinks will be provided.


March 19: Refined Researcher Series “UAH Alumni Access at the Library”

Attention UAH Alumni!  (And also students who are about to graduate!)  Join us at 5:30 PM in Salmon Library room 111, as Doug Bolden addresses the particulars about what you need to do to get alumni access to the library and some of the things you can do with library collections: research, finding materials, and getting books to read. If you need to get an Alumni Association Card (which is now free), contact the UAH Alumni association at  This talk is open to all!  It is aimed at UAH alumni and people who will soon be graduating.


March 31: Refined Researcher Series “This Book has Pictures In It!”

Join us at 5:30 PM in Salmon Library room 111, as Michael Manasco explores the current and possible uses of graphic novels in higher education.  This talk is open to all!  Please feel free to contact Michael Manasco at or by phone at 256.824.6965 with questions.


A few pictures of [late night] snow from around the library

Here are three pictures of snow taken around 11pm to midnight on Wednesday, February 25. The snow was still falling at that time (but starting to slow down) and the Salmon Library had a few inches built up out front.I wanted to make sure I got a picture of the Geode covered in snow. Because why not.

Unfortunately the camera started fogging up in the snow and so the pictures became a bit…esoteric…as it went along. Here are three that turned out fairly well, and one that is blurry enough (of a rather pretty tree covered in snow right outside of the library) that you have to a little faith that it’s not a strange digital art project.

Front of Salmon Library, snow building up on sign

The Geode outside of the Library, covered in snow

Snow covered tree from near the Salmon Library parking lot

Tree right outside of the Salmon Library, covered in snow, but blurry due to an increasingly fogged up camera

Any great pictures you want to share of UAH and the Salmon Library covered in snow? Send them to and I’ll work on compiling a second post!

Five questions to be tackled with the upcoming talk: Welcome to the Future History of the Book.

This coming up Thursday, in Salmon Library room 111 at 5:30pm, I will host a talk, Welcome to the Future History of the Book. It will be a look at the past, present, and future of the book, of information technology, of literacy, and of several related topics. It will blend headlines and actions related to the promotion (or destruction) of books and information and face several questions head on. Five of those are below.

This talk is open and free to all. Bring a friend!

Question 1. What is a book?

Both in the sense of being hard to say what does and does not constitute a book (for instance, do audiobooks count? Do ebooks? Do collections of articles? Short stories? Does it have to be intended to be a book? Does it have to be a good book? Is there a certain minimum page count? A certain minimum Lexile rating?) but also in the sense of saying what degree of bookness something has to have to receive the sense of an elevated status. There will be a short demonstration of this difficultly.

Question 2. Is the book really dying?

No. Changing, sure, but that was bound to happen (pun not intended). However, it might get complicated.

Question 3. If the book isn’t really dying, why have there been so many articles about the death of books?

Conversely, if the book really was dying, to whom would all those articles be appealing? What is the purpose of worrying about the death of books (and libraries, literacy, etc) if it is really inevitable and no one cares?

Question 4. Can information technology be disruptive but not destructive?

Think about the printing press, the automated printing press, cheaper paper, emails, instant messages, text messages, FaceTime, VHS cassettes, CDs, lossless music files. Each of these things altered something that was before and changed how the average person interacts with information. Suddenly your average person could afford a book, or could store entire music libraries on a device that fit in their hand, or could record a favorite TV show and watch it later. Most of these things have been decried by someone, and some of them have had a major impact on our daily lives, but rarely do they destroy the core of the medium. Sure, your laser discs might not work any more, but the principle of watching movies at home has not be utterly destroyed, merely improved (for whom is a whole other question).

Question 5. What might a book look like in 50 years? 100?

Now we’re talking. Maybe literally!

See the flyer below if you want to see more information. Or go to the Welcome to the Future History of the Book event page. You can contact me at for more information, if you need.

The Return of Zotero / Refined Researcher Series


Flyer for workshop The Return Of Zotero

Are you looking for ways to use the Zotero freeware to more effectively manage your research citations? We are here to help!  As the next session in our Refined Researcher series, I will lead a short, hands-on workshop to take your Zotero expertise to the next level.

During this event, I will talk about how to get more than just citations out of this program, including such topics as:

  • How to organize and manage items in your library with collections, tags and notes.
  • How to use Zotero from your iPad/iPhone.
  • How to share your Zotero references with partners for group projects .
  • How to use Zotero to prepare a list of your publications for Activity Insight (if you are a teacher who is coming up for tenure review).

This session will be offered on February 24th at 2 pm in the Salmon Library, Room 214.

These advanced tricks and power user tactics will help fulfill even the most dedicated researcher’s needs. Please feel free to bring your own laptop or tablet to practice on your own.

This talk is open to all.  More information about the session (& my email address if you want to RSVP) is available on the event posting here.

You can find out more about our other upcoming sessions on the library calendar of events.

See you there!

Flyer for workshop The Return Of Zotero


“Now It’s Personal!” : biographical research workshop tonight at 5:30

Biographical research is more than just discovering when a person was born. It’s also about exploring the impact that individual had on their community and even the course of history. I’ll be hosting a session of our “Refined Researcher” series tonight on how to conduct biographical research at UAH with our various databases, from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm in the Salmon Library, Room 214. During this event, we’ll cover:

  • What constitutes biographical data
  • Types of biographical materials that are available in the library
  • Focus on The American National Biography and The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

We’ll talk about using our available resources to help you learn about the important people—the movers and the shakers—and the major trends they started that have shaped society into what it is today. And, of course, the little moments that make learning about history so much fun! Come learn how to research the historical figures who have made their mark on the world. Who knows? It may come in handy for your next research paper.

Information from last night’s talk on copyleft: The Left Side of Copy[right]

opening shot for the talk, showing a circle and the title "Left Side of [Copy]right"

As mentioned in the previous blog post, I held a talk about copyleft and issues surrounding it and copyright: “The Left Side of Copy[right]”. As I do, I felt it would be good to share the complete presentation here. The talk, and original the graphics involved, are all released CC-BY 4.0 International (something that will make sense to you  as you go through the presentation). Links to a zip file containing the graphics (as both PNG and XCF files) is down below.

Up next for me is the February 26th talk: Welcome to the Future History of the Book. Where I will simultaneously answer the question, “Is the book doomed?,” and demonstrate the problems with actually answering the question, “What’s a book?”. And no, I’m not being facetious.