In the interest of providing new and improved modes of access to Special Collections & Archives’ extensive collection of digitized materials, we’re excited to announce that we have have secured our own Middlebury College Library collection within the Internet Archive (also available via go/middleburyia).
The Internet Archive is a nonprofit digital library based in San Francisco whose stated mission is to provide permanent and universal access to all knowledge. In order to meet their ambitious goals, the Internet Archive allows free uploading and downloading to its 50 petabyte data cluster, engages in massive web harvesting and preservation via the Wayback Machine, and oversees one of the largest book digitization projects in the world. Certainly, we are excited to join many of our peer institutions in making unique contributions to the project.
Though the Middlebury College Library collection at the Internet Archive is still quite small, currently containing a sample of works from our Vermont Collection Books & Pamphlets, we expect it to grow rapidly and act as a primary component of our digital archives strategy. Key advantages of hosting digitized content with Internet Archive include:
- Broader access and discoverability of uploaded content;
- Support for streaming and online viewing of media formats ranging from scanned books to audio to vintage video games;
- Automatic OCR for digitized texts;
- Embeddable links & players for streaming audio and video;
- Automated derivation and delivery of digital objects to users in many more file types and formats that we could reasonably support on our own;
- And – of course – that the service is free for both users and contributors.
Everyone is encouraged to pay a visit and take a look at the growing collections. Any questions, comments, or suggestions regarding Internet Archive or our digital collections there can be directed to Patrick Wallace.
The New Library Items site is back, this time as a separate site which can be found at http://newlibstuff.middlebury.edu. Use this interface to browse the collection of library items by subject or type and see their covers.
We have added a WordPress plugin called The Events Calendar to support a site for the DLA.
- WordPress Creative Commons Configurator 1.8.12
- WordPress Open Street Map 3.5.3
- WordPress Recent Posts Widget Extended 0.9.9.4
Tweaks and Fixes
- The limit on the amount of time allowed when you save page settings in Drupal has been increased. This should prevent you from seeing the grey “503 error” page when adding permissions to a particularly large portion of the site, though we still recommend using the AD Group Manager when possible.
- We’ve optimized the query that fetches lists of donors for MiddSTART so that it returns only a few hundred rows from the database on each page load, rather than a hundred thousand.
- Missing page regions caused by a recent update to Monster Menus were restored to several themes, including the Museum and the interior “blue” MIIS theme.
- Extra white-space in Newsletter templates caused by a recent update to Monster Menus has been removed.
- A large number of pages that were showing up in the Google Webmaster Tools report for the MIIS site as 404s now redirect to appropriate content. There are now virtually no broken links on their site, or on other sites pointing at the MIIS site.
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.
There is now a “Stats” link in the green Page section of the Edit Console on the Middlebury and MIIS Drupal sites. Clicking this link will bring you to a report that displays data from Google Analytics for that page from the last 30 days, including pageviews, unique pageviews, bounce rate, exits, referrers, and search terms. Because Google has a limit to the number of API requests we send them, this data is cached for three days.
If someone returns to a webform and edits a previous submission to the form, the confirmation emails that the form sends out when it is normally submitted will be sent out again to all of the intended recipients with the updated information from the form. This change applies to all forms on the Middlebury and MIIS Drupal webform sites.
We have prepared a guide to common web accessibility issues that our site editors can help us resolve, with links to videos explaining the issues and how to fix them.
- Drupal monster_menus 7.x-1.23 and 7.x-1.24
- Drupal twitter_pull 7.x-2.0-alpha3
- Drupal views 7.x-3.12 and 7.x-3.13
- WordPress Accelerate theme 1.2.2
- WordPress CM Tooltip Glossary 3.2.3
- WordPress Creative Commons Configurator 1.8.10
- WordPress Email Users 4.7.10
- WordPress Jetpack 3.8
- WordPress RSS Includes Pages 3.0
Tweaks and Fixes
- The “Class Photo Roster (Faculty Only)” links on the Middlebury and MIIS Directory now take you to a page with links to the Middlebury and MIIS Course Hubs. The photo rosters available in the Course Hubs include several additional features, including each student’s commons affiliation and advisor. We will be supporting the photo rosters through the Course Hubs and removing them from the Directories.
- The way the data is structured for content in regions on the page was changed in Drupal Monster Menus version 7.x-1.23, causing some of our custom code to believe that page regions were empty for unauthenticated users part of Thursday morning until this was fixed.
For the next 30 days, students, faculty, and staff of Middlebury College have free access to the Foreign Office Files for China, 1919-1980. These are archival documents from the British Foreign Office that deal with China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan from between 1919 through 1980. Our trial includes these parts of the archive:
- 1919-1929: Kuomintang, CCP and the Third International
- 1930-1937: The Long March, civil war in China and the Manchurian Crisis
- 1938-1948: Open Door, Japanese war and the seeds of communist victory
- 1949-1956: The Communist revolution
- 1957-1966: The Great Leap Forward
- 1967-1980: The Cultural Revolution