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One of my favorite perks of academia is finding a personally interesting book through the university library.

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Kiddo surprised me today by learning how to count in binary from a library book. I’d checked out the book for her, but I wasn’t expecting such an immediate pay off. I’m skeptical of the “kids gotta learn CS” agenda, but I’m also proud of her when she does.

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'Why We're Dropping Basecamp - Duke University Libraries Blogs'

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Lots to appreciate in this post. link to “Why We’re Dropping Basecamp - Duke University Libraries Blogs”

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Got to do early voting at the library today, which neatly combines a lot of my favorite things into a single experience.

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I know it’s not Advent yet, but I’m feeling impatient for Advent, and if I start checking out Advent books from Libby/the library now, I won’t have to compete with people for them in a month when Advent really starts.

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Kiddo picked up a new library card over the weekend (lots of Kentucky counties do reciprocity agreements, so we collect them), and she’s incensed that there’s a 25-book limit at this system (we regularly check out 50 books each from two different counties).

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'An Iowa school district is using ChatGPT to decide which books to ban - The Verge'

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Even if ChatGPT could be trusted to do this task, “let’s remove books from libraries with less work” is a good example of how efficiency isn’t always a good thing. link to ‘An Iowa school district is using ChatGPT to decide which books to ban - The Verge’

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'The Case of the Internet Archive vs. Book Publishers - The New York Times'

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Good coverage of a worrying development. I’m sympathetic to authors’ worries here, but I also think they’re wrong. If digital is different than the physical, copyright considerations need to be more generous, NOT stricter. The Internet Archive is an important service, and I’m worried about the future. link to ‘The Case of the Internet Archive vs. Book Publishers - The New York Times’

radical early Christianity

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One of the biggest perks of working in academia is access to an academic library. Don’t get me wrong: I deeply appreciate and regularly visit my local public libraries, and kiddo and I have made a couple of visits to her school’s summer library hours (which is an amazing idea). There’s something about the breadth of an academic library, though, that can really come in handy sometimes. For example, I was recently reading an article by Dan McClellan on Bible translation in Latter-day Saint contexts and noticed with interest his reference to David Bentley Hart’s translation of the New Testament.

📚 bookblog: ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ for Born Both: An Intersex Life, by Hida Viloria

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I finally read this book weeks after picking it up from a local library and knowing I’d enjoy it. Viloria’s life story (like so many others’ stories) casually destroys sex and gender binaries. Reading about the experiences of intersex people was an important part of my beginning to reject those binaries several years ago, and I think anyone clinging to those binaries ought to hear from voices like Viloria’s. That’s not to say that other queerings of that binary are any less valid than being intersex, of course!

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After five years of teaching in an LIS program, I’ve finally had the moment I’ve been dreaming of: Running into a former student during a family trip to a local library.

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on '“The library is a safe place.” – WIL WHEATON dot NET'

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I’ve felt a lot of appreciation for Wil Wheaton recently, but for him to come to Kentucky to praise our libraries and speak against dumb laws passed by our legislature makes me just love the guy. link to ‘“The library is a safe place.” – WIL WHEATON dot NET’

📚 bookblog: ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ for Gender Queer: A Memoir, by Maia Kobabe

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This is a frank, vulnerable memoir that I learned a lot from; I’m glad for Kobabe’s willingness to share eir story. I also appreciated the art style. I’d been meaning to read this in print a while ago but had checked out too many books from the library and had to return it before I got to it. I’m glad it was available on Hoopla so I could read it on my phone instead of mindlessly scrolling through TVTropes.

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'Florida Teachers Are Emptying Classroom Libraries to Avoid Going to Jail'

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What a dumb world we live in. link to ‘Florida Teachers Are Emptying Classroom Libraries to Avoid Going to Jail’

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One of kiddo’s library books right now is part comic and part choose your own adventure, all wrapped up in a solo TTRPG adventure. It’s a bit too old for her, but we’re both loving it.

📚 bookblog: ❤️❤️❤️❤️🖤 for The Handbook to Lazy Parenting, by Guy Delisle

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I’m a big fan of Delisle’s comics, but in the past, I’ve skipped his series on parenting. This morning, though, a friend visiting Brussels offered to bring me back a copy of Delisle’s « Chroniques de Jeunesse », so when I went to the library later in the day, I couldn’t help but pick up something else he’s done. His art is great, and his stories are funny and sweet. My only complaint is that I couldn’t read the original French edition (though I should be glad Kentucky libraries carry the English translations!

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'Public Library Budgets Are Being Slashed. Police Have More Cash Than Ever'

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Libraries are perhaps the most important public institution out there. We can’t afford to cut their budgets. link to ‘Public Library Budgets Are Being Slashed. Police Have More Cash Than Ever’

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The pure joy kiddo showed when getting her first library card was exactly what I needed just now.

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Looking at the haul of new library books in our living room today, I realized that we’re both a family that buys a lot of books and a family that saves huge amounts of money thanks to the library.

beating Super Mario Galaxy 2 with kiddo

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About a month ago, I blogged about the approach we take to playing video games around here, which is to check out old games from a local library and play them on the Nintendo Wii we liberated from my parents’ basement a couple of years ago. Earlier this week, that approach bore some fruit: After repeated cycles of keeping the game out as long as we could, returning it for a couple of weeks, and then checking it back out, kiddo and I beat Super Mario Galaxy 2—a game several years older than she is for a console that’s been around for nearly as long as her parents have known each other.

old video games, libraries, and xkcd

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There’s a great xkcd strip (see below) about someone who always plays video games on a five-year lag because you get to enjoy all the good games with less of a hassle: I love this strip for a few different reasons. First of all, I’ve never been a hardcore videogamer, so if I do ever play a big title, it usually is about five years after the fact. Second, I think there’s something about it that gets funnier (or else makes me feel older) over time: It’s funny to think of someone only discovering Portal in early 2013, but now that “five years late” is almost “ten years ago,” there’s something kind of absurd about the strip.

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There was a brief period of publisher generosity early in COVID times where I snagged so many PDFs of books my uni library usually doesn’t have access to. Still making my way through them.

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Grâce à une épisode de Culture BD sur France Culture, j’ai décidé de lire (enfin) Corto Maltese. Content de trouver des traductions chez ma bibliothèque locale, mais il faut que je trouve plus de moyens pour lire la BD en français, quoi.

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'Oklahoma Threatens Librarians: ‘Don’t Use the Word Abortion’'

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Libraries are a key part of a democratic society, and this is a very worrying development. link to ‘Oklahoma Threatens Librarians: ‘Don’t Use the Word Abortion’’

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Very happy to learn that the whole run of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl is now available through my library. I am several years behind and eager to catch up.

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'Why we need a public internet and how to get one - The Verge'

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Lots of interesting ideas in this interview. I particularly like libraries running Mastodon instances. link to ‘Why we need a public internet and how to get one - The Verge’

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'KY lawmakers reverse vote, give politicians control of libraries | Lexington Herald Leader'

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Grumpy about this this morning. link to ‘KY lawmakers reverse vote, give politicians control of libraries | Lexington Herald Leader’

🔗 linkblog: my thoughts on 'KY libraries worried by bill giving politicians control over them | Lexington Herald Leader'

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Wish that I’d been paying better attention to this legislation. Libraries are pillars of our communities and ought to retain partisan independence. link to ‘KY libraries worried by bill giving politicians control over them | Lexington Herald Leader’

🔗 linkblog: just finished 'Penguin Random House Demands Removal Of Maus From Digital Library Because The Book Is Popular Again | Techdirt'

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The first line is a powerful one. Libraries ought to be a constant reference point (and beneficiary) when liberalizing IP. link to ‘Penguin Random House Demands Removal Of Maus From Digital Library Because The Book Is Popular Again | Techdirt’

🔗 linkblog: just finished 'Internet Archive Supports the Maryland’s Library eBook Fairness Law - Internet Archive Blogs'

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Intrigued by this idea. link to ‘Internet Archive Supports the Maryland’s Library eBook Fairness Law - Internet Archive Blogs’

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I dream of a world where IP laws are liberalized to the point that libraries can provide their own, publicly-funded streaming services.

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Won a $25 gift card to local indy bookstore from local library. Went to bookstore and wound up spending an ADDITIONAL $50, so it looks like everybody won this round.

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I never mind paying fines at a library, and I never grumble about a bill at a bike shop. Both institutions deserve all the money they can charge me.

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A local library offers access to a fourth-tier music streaming service with a limited collection. Don’t know why most people would bother, but me and my ultra-niche music tastes are doing great.

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Late fines start to lose some of their teeth once you start reframing them as new opportunities to financially support your local library.

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One of my favorite things about university libraries and ILL is that they’re officially there for research, but no one will stop you from reading the books just because you want to.