Friday, 21 December 2012

Library Christmas break opening hours

Townsville and Cairns Library buildings will close at 5pm on Friday 21st December 2012, and will be reopening at 8am on Wednesday 2nd January 2013.  Find out more about Library summer opening hours.

We wish you all a safe and enjoyable Christmas and New Years holiday break. We will see you all in 2013.

So long, Algernon...

Visitors to the Townsville campus library over the past few years may be familiar with our Library Gorilla, Algernon.

Algernon has been with us since before the naming of the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library, and has probably been a "member of staff" longer than some of our librarians.

Algernon is, in fact, the treasured childhood toy of one of our medical students.  Lauren P has had him since she was about one year old (he looks pretty good for a 20+ year old stuffed gorilla), and kindly lent him to us for a jungle-themed display.  You may remember Lauren - she worked in the library on the lending services desk for a couple of years, and her picture still turns up on our website from time-to-time.

When she didn't come to collect him after the jungle display, he became something of a fixture in our office - sitting on whatever seat happened to be available.  Then we decided that, as long as he was with us, we may as well keep using him in displays...

Algernon became the face for many of our displays over the years.  At first we used him as a decoration, but as he became more of a character, we let him "design" the displays for us - we ran with books "chosen" (as well as presented) by our resident gorilla.  He also wrote a number of blog posts for us.

At one point we even faked his death - but it was all revealed to be a plot worthy of a pulp fiction novel, involving an evil twin brother and a detective that looked suspiciously like a giant papier-mâché curlew...

Lauren was happy for us to keep him around, as long as she was still a student here at JCU.  He really was adopted as part of the team.  He may have even joined us for a couple of parties over the years, but it's probably best if you don't tell Lauren about that.  Let's just say there *might* be photographic evidence of a librarian dancing with a stuffed gorilla.

With the refurbishment of the Ground Floor of the library building, and the relocation of the staff, it became harder to use Algie in displays.  Always mindful of the fact that he was on loan to us, we wanted to make sure that his displays where within sight of our office.  When that became impossible, we weren't comfortable about leaving him out on his own.

He remained a fixture of our office, though.  While you might not have seen him for a while, we see him every day.  He's been a part of our team for years.

But Lauren has graduated, and is moving on (congratulations, Lauren!), and now it's time for Algernon to go home.

Today we had a morning tea to say goodbye to Algie (oh, and to Anne, who is leaving us for a year on secondment).  We wish him (and Lauren - and Anne, for that matter) all the best.  He has been the best stuffed gorilla to ever work in this library.

Feature eBooks: Christmas

Christmas: A candid history. Written for everyone who loves and is simultaneously driven crazy by the holiday season, this book provides an enlightening, entertaining perspective on how the annual Yuletide celebration got to be what it is today.

Christmas philosophy for everyone: Better than a lump of coal. From Santa, elves and Ebenezer Scrooge, to the culture wars and virgin birth, this book explores a host of philosophical issues raised by the practices and beliefs surrounding Christmas. It offers thoughtful and humorous philosophical insights into the most widely celebrated holiday in the Western world. Contributions come from a wide range of disciplines, including philosophy, theology, religious studies, English literature, cognitive science and moral psychology.

The man who invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens's A Christmas carol rescued his career and revived our holiday spirits. With warmth, wit, and good cheer, Standiford shows how the unlikely success of "A Christmas Carol" revitalized Charles Dickens's languishing career and revived the celebration of the near-forgotten Christmas holiday.

This year it will be different. A charming collection of Maeve Binchy's much-loved Christmas stories, featuring new delights and old favourites.

Mayan Prophecy and the End of the World

If you are reading, this then the world did not end on 21/12/2012. If you are curious to on what grounds was this prediction based, the place to start would be the Ancient Mayan Calender. For holiday and New Year conversation topics or to brush up on coursework for next year some titles in the library ebook collection to read online are
For something more humorous I would simply do a search of the web for some cartoons. 

Thursday, 20 December 2012

GATFC Computer lab availibility over Summer Break

Please read the following information from the IT&R week in review of 21st of December 2012 for information on computer lab availability, hours and support services.

Information Technology & Resources staff will be unavailable from 5pm Friday 21st December 2012 until the first working day of the New Year Wednesday 2nd January 2013.

Please also note Access and Hours of Operation which covers availability of General Access and Teaching Computer Facilities. These are undergoing annual maintenance which this year involves loading of new images for Semester 1, 2013. During the break, clients who believe that there is a Computing or Communications service problem should first check Central Computing Bulletins for any advice regarding the problem or outage. If nothing is detailed, clients should ring the Service Status number +61 7 4781 6555. Should the problem be known, advice will be available.

All General Access and Teaching Computer Facilities (GATCF) facilities on Townsville, Cairns and Mackay campuses will be closed for the Christmas Break commencing 5pm Friday 21st December 2012 with the exception of the following areas which will be open with swipe card access.  During this time security staff will be patrolling these areas but no IT support staff will be available to service them in the case of service disruptions.

Computer Centre Building 2 Rooms 103 and 104

Library Building B1 Room 030

Selected facilities in the Townsville Computer Centre Building 2 and the Cairns Library Building B1 as well as Library areas on both campuses will re-open at 8am Wednesday 2nd January 2013.

The GATCF team will post notices to the Central Computing Bulletins advising of any changes to the status of the GATCF labs. You should check the bulletins for ongoing updates from time to time.

New title by JCU author

A/Prof. Rosita Henry
Performing place, practising memories: Aboriginal Australians, hippies and the state. 

During the 1970s a wave of "counter-culture" people moved into rural communities in many parts of Australia. This book focuses in particular on the town of Kuranda in North Queensland and the relationship between the settlers and the local Aboriginal population, concentrating on a number of linked social dramas that portrayed the use of both public and private space. Through their public performances and in their everyday spatial encounters, these people resisted the bureaucratic state but, in the process, they also contributed to the cultivation and propagation of state effects.

Available from JCU Library in ebook format.

Monday, 17 December 2012

The Mabo Library says “thank-you” to its 2012 volunteers

Back: Liz Downes, Marg Naylor (volunteers), Narelle Harrison (Library staff member)
 Front: Jennifer Tompkins (volunteer),  Bronwyn McBurnie (Special Collections Librarian)

The Eddie Koiki Mabo Library staff celebrated the end of a great year for our three Special Collections volunteers today. A thank-you morning tea was held so that kind words of thanks and friendship could be shared over cake, chocolates and pikelets! This year Marg Naylor donated 190 hours working with the University Art Collection. Jennifer Tompkins donated 110 hours of her time working with Narelle Harrison (Library staff member), primarily in the Library Archives collection. Lastly, Liz Downes donated a 177 hours of her time researching Special Collections, and writing for the Library News Blog under the series name “Fossickings in Special Collections”. All three volunteers freely gave us the benefit of their skills and knowledge, and have made a fantastic contribution to the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library Special Collections.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Closed - 24 Hour Information Commons

Due to building maintenance, the 24 hour Information Commons computer lab in the Townsville Eddie Koiki Mabo Library building will be closed from 5pm Friday 14th of December to 5am Sunday 16th of December 2012. Please visit other computer labs, if needed.

JCU lecturer Russell McGregor wins literary prize

Aboriginal people and the Australian Nation Associate Professor Russell McGregor Congratulations to Associate Professor Russell MacGregor  who has won a a prize for his book Indifferent Inclusion. Russell has received an award from the 2012 NSW Premier's History Awards  and earlier this year his work was shortlisted in the Australian History Prize in the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards .

Here is a short excerpt from the judge's comments "McGregor’s story places less emphasis on oppression than it does on the agency exercised by Indigenous Australians as they secured inclusion within the nation. Using an impressive array of primary sources, McGregor develops an original and compelling argument. He suggests that inclusion was less a function of a political action than of a social and cultural campaign as Aboriginal Australians challenged the apathy of European Australians and claimed a place within the nation." 

Indifferent Inclusion is held in the library catalouge in both hard copy and eBook version. Copies are also held at Townsville City Libraries. It can also be purchased online or from various retail stores.

BrowZine Service Outage

BrowZine have notified us that the service will be unavailable for several hours commencing 5pm AEDST Saturday 15th December.

Full announcement

Items already in your journal shelf will still be available (like they would be in offline mode) - but access to new content will be unavailable for the duration of the upgrade.

After a successful trial the Library has subscribed to Browzine and are currently working with the vendors on incorporating more of our ejournal content in preparation for full launch early in 2013.

Upcoming Reserve Online Unavailability

The Reserve Online repository will be unavailable for 24 hours from noon AEDST Thursday 20th December  2012 due to Copyright Compliance requirements. The system will be available again noon AEDST Friday 21 December 2012. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Special Collections Fossickings 16: Bigger than Yasi? - Cyclone Mahina

The Pearling Disaster, 1899: A Memorial, Map insert, p14.
Was Yasi the most severe cyclone ever to cross the Queensland coast? Maybe not.  Striking the Cape York coast on 4 March 1899, Cyclone Mahina is still regarded as Australia’s worst natural disaster since European settlement, with the loss of over 400 lives and dozens of ships. Clement Wragge, the subject of a previous Fossickings post, identified and named this terrifying storm but tragically his warnings were transmitted after the event.

With a central pressure of 27 inches (914mb) compared with Yasi’s 930mb, Mahina was even more intense than her modern cousin. Moreover the cyclone generated a combined storm surge and “wave run-up” of at least 13 metres, spreading  5km inland and causing many of the Aboriginal deaths.  A police constable at Barrow Point, 30 km to the south, found himself and his Aboriginal troopers in waist-deep water despite being camped on a ridge 12 metres above sea level.
Mahina destroyed several pearling fleets, operating out of Thursday Island, which had taken last minute shelter in Bathurst Bay, only to find this was in Mahina’s direct path. Of more than 320 souls lost from the pearling fleets the vast majority were from the Pacific or Torres Strait Islands, Japan or South-East Asia. Most of the Aboriginal deaths occurred on land, or indeed as they desperately tried to rescue the stricken pearlers.  Only 12 European deaths were recorded.

The Pearling Disaster, 1899: A Memorial, p29.
Caption: Captain W. F. Porter of Crest of the Wave. 
Mr. Arthur Outridge (Father of Harold Outridge) in Diving Dress
One of the real treasures in Special Collections must surely be the contemporary account, “The Pearling Disaster 1899 : A Memorial”, published by the Outridge family who lost two members aboard the schooner “Sagitta”.  The National Library of Australia is currently providing access to a digital copy of this book.  Hector Holthouse devotes a chapter of his 1971 book “Cyclone” to  Mahina, while Ian Townsend’s gripping 2008 novel, “The Devil’s  Eye” is based on events surrounding the storm and lists the names of nearly all the non-European victims.  All titles are held in the North Queensland collection.

Story by Miniata

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Black Ink Press Support Indigenous Writers this Xmas

Christmas is a time to consider presents and any good librarian would always suggest a book.

This year why not choose not only an Australian writer but a book with Australian culture in it and one that supports Indigenous Australian writers. Black Ink Press is a Townsville based publisher that has over the pass 10 years or so published around 60 titles written by Indigenous Australians from all across Australia; by schoolchildren and adults; in Indigenous languages and English; across the genres of poetry, traditional tales, recent historical events, and just good yarns.

The second reason to buy now is that Black Ink Press titles are currently in short demand due to restructuring of the parent organisation. I went to buy a personal favourite called Junjardee and the Red Bank by Janelle Evans & Jaquanna Elliott   which is about the little hairy man that I grew up hearing about in southern Queensland. They only had one copy left.

I have seen Black Ink Press titles stocked at most major book retailers in Townsville and also at independent book stores, and several other types of retailers. You can also borrow the titles here at JCU library.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Introducing EndNote X6

EndNote version X6 is now available for use. You can download the program using the link in our EndNote LibGuide or you can borrow the installation CD from the Library’s lending desk.

EndNote X6 has several new features, including:
  • Update and synchronise the references in EndNote desktop and EndNote Web by the click of a button. Maintain and synchronise the references in your EndNote library with the references in your EndNote Web library even across multiple computers 
  • Change Layout options to match your monitor and preferences such as showing the Preview, Reference, and PDF Viewer panels on the right side of the screen to fit widescreen monitors 
  • Open PDFs in a separate tabbed Reference / PDF window for viewing references or annotating PDF files 
  • Apply a rating to each of your references. Search your EndNote library by selecting the Rating option from the Field list.
See more about the new EndNote features in the “Welcome to EndNote X6” section of the EndNote Online User Guide.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Special Collections Fossickings 15: Clement Wragge - weatherman extraordinaire

Among many much grander volumes there exists in the Rare Book Collection a small book of unremarkable title and appearance. Nonetheless publishers Sapsford and Co  proudly announced  the first issue of Wragge’s Australasian Weather Guide and Almanac, produced “regardless of pains [and] careless of expense.”

In fact, the book’s homely appearance belies the remarkable life and eccentric character of its compiler, Clement Wragge.  English-born, he abandoned a legal career at home and, arriving in Australia, began studying meteorology. He had already built some of Australia’s first weather stations when, in 1887, he became Queensland’s chief weather forecaster, constructing a weather observatory on Wickham Terrace.

Author Hector Holthouse claimed that Wragge’s nickname of “Inclement Wragge” arose from the torrential rain which fell on Brisbane shortly after his arrival. Others suggest it referred to his tempestuous nature. Wragge pioneered tropical cyclone research, unsuccessfully urging the need for a specialised research centre, and was the first to bestow exotic feminine names on cyclones. Less diplomatic was his practice of naming southerly storms after politicians he disliked! The failure of his drought-breaking attempts damaged Wragge’s reputation but two of the vortex guns used in his experiment remain on display in Charleville.

The 1898 Almanac, intended as an annual publication, contains a wealth of knowledge extending beyond the meteorological. Details of tides and ocean currents jostle with articles on agriculture, industry and mining, postal information, bushcraft  and medical advice.  One article is devoted to the luxuriant garden Wragge created at his Taringa home.  This handy compendium must have found a valued place in both city and bush and his publishers were right to be proud of it. Wragge resigned his government position in 1902 although the almanac continued for a while without him. We should feel privileged to hold a copy of the very first issue of this deceptively ordinary book, compiled by such an extraordinary character.

Last July ABC-TV’s weather woman, Jenny Woodward, introduced a feature on Clement Wragge on 7.30 Queensland.  Go to State Library of Qld's blog to read more about the man.

Story by Miniata

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

New Libguide for eBooks

JCU Library over the past couple of years has expanded its collection of online books from the thousands to a couple of hundred thousand possible titles. 

When searching either via One Search or Tropicat, you would have seen many more electronic resources in the results list.  
  • One Search will identify them as eBook and an icon that looks like a book with an e in it.
  • In Tropicat the record will state either online or electronic resource depending on the type of search done.
There are a several platforms that provide online book titles that the library subscribes to. Each one will work slightly differently in the way you download, borrow, or read the book.

So go to our new LibGuide eBooks Guide to learn more.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Relax with some holiday humdingers

If life has slowed down for you over summer, you might like to consider some recreational reading or vege out time in front of the TV. If this is the case, come visit the first floor of the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library. We have put together book and DVD displays that might provide you with some relaxation material. We will add new titles as the display items are borrowed.