Saturday, February 23, 2008

Positive Change Magazines

According to an article published in the San Francisco Chronicle (, new wave progressive magazines that promote “positive change” such as Body and Soul, Ode, Utne Reader, and Yoga Journal have attracted mass appeal. The following represent sample titles owned by the San Francisco Public Library in the Magazines and Newspapers Center:

Body and Soul
– A magazine devoted to maintaining balance in a busy world, articles cover topics such as holistic living, medicine, natural foods, self-help psychology, contemporary mysticism, and green politics.

Ode – Covers articles and feature stories on people and ideas changing the world.

Utne Reader – Covering insightful analyses of art and media from diverse perspectives, this magazine reprints articles published from over 2000 alternative and independent media sources, focusing on the latest ideas trends emerging in our culture.

Yoga Journal – A San Francisco based publication founded in Berkeley in 1975, this magazine concentrates on yoga, holistic health, New Age consciousness, meditation, and eastern and western spirituality.

For additional current and past issues of magazines, newspapers, and journals in a variety of topical subject areas, come by and browse the collection in the Magazines and Newspapers Center.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Library 2.0: The Future of Libraries

The Magazines and Newspapers Center will present a program—Library 2.0: The Future of Libraries--hosted by Sarah Houghton-Jan, Senior Librarian for Digital Futures at the San Jose Public Library and author of the award-winning blog.

For many, the word "library" conjures images of tattered books, dusty corners, outdated equipment, and scowling (if not shushing) library staff. Today's library has extended beyond what many of us grew up with: top-of-the-line public computers, DVD collections to rival Blockbuster, online magazines and newspapers, downloadable audio books, various cultural programs and computer training workshops, and librarians who are both Web 2.0 savvy and expert online searchers only too happy to help you find what you need.

But where do we go from here? The way people find information is transforming, privacy concerns in a digital age are largely unknown or ignored, user expectations of brick-and-mortar and virtual libraries are evolving, and the race to keep up with the ever-changing content and packaging of information is a challenge for all libraries. Find out how the library of tomorrow can help you live a better life today. Welcome to the future of libraries.

Sarah Houghton-Jan is the Senior Librarian for Digital Futures at the San Jose Public Library. She presents internationally on issues of technology services in libraries and is widely published including her first book on creating technology training programs for staff. She is also the author of the award-winning blog.

- Address: 100 Larkin St. (at Grove)
- Location: Main Library, Latino/Hispanic Community Room
- Event Date and Time: Tuesday, February 19, 2008 (6 to 7:30 p.m.)

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Research Your Roots!

Learn how to research your family history by using two genealogy databases: HeritageQuest Online and Ancestry Library Edition. Each database complements the other by combining thousands of digital, searchable historical census records, key genealogy resources, and local history collections.

Heritage Quest features a search utility for genealogical books and magazines plus an index to a Revolutionary War database about individuals who served in the war and the Freedman’s Bank database which includes information about freed slaves from the Civil War. Both databases include information about the US Census. Ancestry Library includes thousands of databases on everything from the California Birth Index to a list of Japanese Americans who were relocated during World War II. In addition, Ancestry Library offers a variety of charts and forms that patrons can download to print out.

Familiarize yourself with these two resources during this one-hour demonstration.

  • Address: 100 Larkin St. (at Grove)
  • Location: Main Library Training Center (5th Fl.)
  • Event Date and Time: Wednesday, February 13 (6 to 7 p.m.)
  • Saturday, February 2, 2008

    Using Microfilm and Microfiche

    The Herb Caen Magazines and Newspapers Center at the San Francisco Public Library has a wealth of archived newspapers and magazines. You can find an obituary for a long-lost relative or read the gossip columns when Clark Gable came to town. Discover the price of a TV in 1970 or learn about the news on the date of your birth. In a digital age where so much information is easy to find on the Internet, it is easy to overlook this vast collection of resources.

    There are different kinds of micro-formats. The library has magazines, journals, and newspapers on microfiche (a celluloid index card) and microfilm (a roll of celluloid film). The microform readers in the Center can be used to view either format.

    To use the microform viewing equipment:

    1. Choose whether you will be using the machine for microfilm or microfiche.
    2. Check to see that the machine and printer are turned on.

    To use the machine for viewing microfiche:

    1. Push the rectangular microfilm carrier all the way back. Bring the glass microfiche tray to the right and slide it forward.
    2. Lift the top of the glass tray and insert the microfiche card.
    3. Push the tray beneath the lit optical lens and the image will appear on the screen.
    4. Use the handle of the microfiche tray to move the image on the screen.

    To use the machine for viewing microfilm:

    1. Move the glass microfiche tray to the left and to the back.
    2. Pull the microfilm carrier to the front. Push the microfilm reel onto the left sprocket.
    3. Pull the film off the top of the roll, slide it under the left roller, underneath the glass plate, and under the right roller.
    4. Slide the film forward until it buckles against the right take-up reel.
    5. Press the front blue button to the left to get the film to “catch” onto the right take-up reel.

    Depending on the machine, the knob to advance or rewind the microfilm is either on the right side of the machine or the front.

    Options for using the machine are as follows: Different sized lenses are available. The lenses are interchangeable and can be exchanged for one of a different magnification.

    Above the lens are three wheels:

    • The top wheel rotates the image.

    • The second wheel increases or decreases the size of the image.

    • The bottom wheel focuses the image and turning it will sharpen the image.

    The Center has two kinds of microform equipment: Some of the machines are optical and will only display the film as it was photographed. The other machines are digital and allow you to print a reversed image from the screen. If the microfilm was photographed as a negative image, these machines will allow you to reverse it and print a positive image.

    When printing, make sure to use the zoom control and place your image within the crop marks on the screen. These crop marks show the boundary of what will be printed.

    If you have any questions about using the machines, you can ask one of the library staff to help you. Coming soon, the department will have microform and flatbed scanning equipment available.