Author Archives: Carrie Macfarlane

About Carrie Macfarlane

Director of Research & Instruction.

A Heaven We Have Left – a poem

Thanks to poet Gary Margolis for sharing this library-related poem.

A Heaven We Have Left

I’m reading a novel that takes place
in 1860 in Sicily. The writing’s so good
I could be anywhere and not know
where I am. I’ve never heard of the author,

Gieuseppe di Lampedusa, who only
wrote one book, until a friend wanted
to pay me for a gift I couldn’t take
any compensation for and mailed me

this story. For listening to his wife
who was worried about their son
when my friend was out of town. Away
attending to their daughter. Who said

he thought I would be carried away
by the paragraphs, the natural details married
to the psychological, how Lampedusa presents
the past as if it were the present. How he collapses

the future in a sentence. Quickly
and forever involves me in that other
century, a place not my own.
Unless I lived in Sicily in 1860

and cheered for Garibaldi the Great Unifier.
And all those underneath, accompanying stories.
I can’t ask God to give me more time
to read. To take with me when I’m gone.

Although maybe I could beseech Him, believe
beneath the ground there is a library and no
librarian, no automatic notice letting me know
when a timeless book is overdue.

When I have to return or pay to replace it.
When my friend is away so long
I feel like I’m living in a once and future century,
one of us will have to read and write about.

-Gary Margolis

You CAN search library databases from off campus!

You can search library databases from off campus! Just start at the library site:  JSTOR, ebooks, audiobooks, Summon and all of our online journals, magazines and newspapers are there for you…no matter where you are!

When you’re off campus, links that are on library web pages (for example, Research Guides, Summon and the Journals list) will ask you to log in with Midd credentials. It’s as easy as that!

Seniors: Ask a librarian about alumni access to library databases!

Enjoy the summer!


Friday Links – December 5, 2014

Gates Foundation announces “world’s strongest policy on Open Access“. ‘from January 2015, researchers it funds must make open their resulting papers and underlying data-sets immediately upon publication — and must make that research available for commercial re-use. “We believe that published research resulting from our funding should be promptly and broadly disseminated,” the foundation states.’

Librarians as publishers. As an example – one of our own: Portulano (while the library may not be “a publisher” of this journal, certain library staff members provided instrumental support in making it accessible)

All About Those Books. The Mount Desert Island High School version of Meghan Trainor’s “All About The Bass.” (MDIHS has just 571 students!)

FSU Shooting Highlights the Need for Library Security.  Library Journal article – “Early in the morning of November 20 a lone gunman opened fire in Florida State University’s (FSU) Strozier Library.”  The library staff will be receiving training this month for how to handle such situations.

Classroom LIB105 to be renovated and expanded

To meet the high demand for interactive video conferencing spaces on campus the College has decided to fast track a renovation and expansion of the LIB105 classroom. LIB105 will go off-line after this semester and the renovated space will go back online for the Summer Language School session. The room will be enlarged to the east, increasing its size by about 1/3. The finished room will be dividable into two spaces, each with its own entry door. The space will have high end, state of the art video conferencing equipment.

Changes to shelving and seating

The six study carrels on the east wall of 105 will be removed. We will reuse the lockers from these study carrels in carrels located elsewhere in the library.

To open up additional floor space, seven static ranges of shelves will be converted to compact shelving, compressing the collection against the existing compact shelving in the SE corner of the floor. To make the shelving conversion possible, right after exams end in December, the books (specifically, PS 214 – PS 3569 E5) and shelves will be temporarily moved to the Harman Periodicals Reading Area. The temporary shelves will stay in place during January and into February while the new exterior wall of 105 is built and the compact shelving units are installed, then the books will be moved from Harman back onto the new compact shelving. A few of the big blue easy chairs from Harman will be placed between the showcases and book stacks, and the rest will be staged on the upper level of Davis Library. The newspapers and magazines will continue to be accessible. All the books will continue to be available for use except for the short time they’re actually moving from one spot to the other and back. The new compact shelving and the static book stacks on the north side of LIB105 will be accessible throughout the spring semester while the renovation of 105 continues.

Facilities Services will do what it can to minimize noise and dust. This project is quite similar to the expansion of LIB140 a few years ago, which was, overall, quite painless and had little impact on people in the building.

Changes to room scheduling

The LIB105 classroom is currently used as an instruction and computer lab space. In January 2015, when the renovation begins, this will change. Scheduling and events staff are working on policies for the new videoconferencing room and for the LIB140 classroom, which has just been opened to use outside of the Economics Department. The library has given feedback on these proposed policies.

For now, we know:

  • LIB105 will be closed for renovation from January 2015 through the spring term.
  • When LIB105 reopens as a videoconferencing and meeting space, in time for Language Schools, it will be quite different. For one thing, it will no longer have computers! And in terms of scheduling, videoconferencing events will receive priority.
  • Beginning in January, students looking for a computer lab in the Library will need to use other rooms, including LIB140 and LIB220, the Wilson Media Lab. There are computer labs outside the library too, of course.
  • From January through the end of the spring term, classes that would have been scheduled in LIB105 will need to be scheduled elsewhere.
  • Even after LIB105 reopens in the summer, videoconferencing needs will get higher priority than instruction.

Questions? Post here, or contact your liaison.

We’ll post updates here as often as we can.

Friday Links – October 17, 2014

Time for a Thesis – From the Senior Admissions Fellows Blog, a self-reflective essay by a History major on the impact of our annual message to seniors about thesis carrel signup and research support. His conclusion is quite nice: “When I think ahead to the books and research, I am not so much nervous as I am excited,” he says.

Practicing Collaborative Digital Pedagogy to Foster Digital Literacies in Humanities Classrooms – This article presents two case studies of classes who employed different techniques to “foster digital literacies in humanities students using distinct approaches for each course.” My key takeaway hinged on one student’s observation: “Through creating an infographic in, I learned that it is very important to develop skills in being able to pick out important information from the vast amounts that you can easily find online.”

How Stress Affects the Brain During Learning – A fight or flight reaction may be useful in some situations, but it is highly detrimental in the classroom. Whether anxiety stems from test taking or from an unstable home environment, the brains of students experiencing high levels of stress look different than those who are not — and those brains behave differently, too. In this article, we’ll take a look at the neural and hormonal responses that underpin a student’s stress response, and make a few suggestions for continuing to teach through the challenges it presents.

Upcoming Battery Will Charge Phones And Electric Cars in Minutes – It takes about an hour to fully charge a cell phone, and the battery lasts about two to three years over 500 charge cycles. However, a new design could reduce charge time to only a few minutes and the battery is expected to last for 10,000 charge cycles over a 20 year lifespan.

FireChat in Hong Kong: How an app tapped its way into the protests
(CNN) — The revolution will not be televised but it will be tweeted, instant messaged or, in the case of Hong Kong, broadcast on mesh networks like FireChat.


Liaison Discussion: My Very First MOOC. Led by Steve Bertolino.

Topic: My Very First MOOC. Led by Steve Bertolino.
Who’s Invited: All liaisons and anyone who might be interested
Who’s “Required”: Primary liaisons, please try to attend if you can. Sorry in advance for any conflicts.
Where and when: Wednesday, October 8, 10-11 am. LIB145.
Description: Steve took a 12-week MOOC and survived! Come for an overview of what the course was like. We’ll have a discussion exploring the pros and cons of the MOOC style of online learning.

“Liaison Discussion Section” meetings address research and/or technology topics of interest to liaisons. They can be conversations, or presentations, or both. Anyone is welcome to attend.

Welcome (Back) to the Library!

Whether you’re new to campus or returning from summer break, we invite you to take advantage of all the library has to offer. Here are 5 things you won’t want to miss:

Many thanks to our talented Digital Media Tutors Maggie, Emily and Denisse, who created this video and others as a summer project!

More tips for the new semester:  Midd Libraries Quick Guide [go/quicklib]

Continue reading

Friday Links – July 11, 2014

At Sea in a Deluge of Data
By Alison J. Head and John Wihbey
Chronicle of Higher Education
People in charge of hiring at large organizations such as Microsoft, Nationwide Insurance and the FBI say that recent college graduates lack skills in research and analysis. “The new workers default to quick answers plucked from the Internet. That method might be fine for looking up a definition or updating a fact, but for many tasks, it proved superficial and incomplete…”

How unexpected opportunities can inform practice – As a part of some of my coursework I have had the opportunity to read some interesting educational research. I thought it might be helpful to share a brief overview of some of the articles that I’ve reviewed. This is the first post in a series that I was planning to share. Please feel free to contact me at if you’d like to discuss further.

11 University and Library Groups Release Net-Neutrality Principles – The nation’s colleges and libraries have a message for the Federal Communications Commission: Don’t mess with net neutrality.