Blog Archives

Metaphors, Ireland, RSS, More: Big Saturday Morning Buzz, April 26, 2014

If I never update ResearchBuzz again it’s because I’ve discovered a database at the University of Virginia called The Mind is a Metaphor. This is like brandy for my brain. “This collection of eighteenth-century metaphors of mind serves as the basis for a scholarly study of the metaphors and root-images appealed to by the novelists, poets, dramatists, essayists, philosophers, belle-lettrists, preachers, and pamphleteers of the long eighteenth century. While the database does include metaphors from classical sources, from Shakespeare and Milton, from the King James Bible, and from more recent texts, it does not pretend to any depth or density of coverage in literature other than that of the British eighteenth century.”

A new tool has been developed to track social media for information on the crisis in Venezuela. “Venezuela Decoded gathers information found on Twitter, groups it by source (either from government or opposition sources) and separates them by language (Spanish and English). It also features a timeline created with the online tool Timeline JS that shows the most important events of each day.”

The White House has announced a new online veterans employment center. “The Veterans Employment Center, an integrated, online tool connecting veterans, transitioning service members and their spouses with both public and private-sector employers, is the result of an interagency effort to improve, simplify and consolidate the current array of employment resources for veterans. Additionally, this will provide one comprehensive database of resumes for employers who are seeking to leverage the skills and talents of veterans, service members, and their spouses.”

IFTTT has finally launched an app for Android.

The National Library of Ireland has added over 10,000 items to its online collection. “”A portrait of the infamous Ellen Byrne, who was tried for her husband’s murder in 1842 after his badly decomposed body was found in their shared bed; photographs of 1916 leader Tom Clarke, his wife Kathleen and family; and posters documenting the suffragette movement are just some of the 10,500 newly digitised items released by the National Library of Ireland (NLI) today (24.04.14).””

I love this article from Marshall Kirkpatrick, and not just because I’m an old woman yelling for you to get off my lawn: Why I Think RSS Still Matters.

Now available: a new search engine for royalty-free stock photos (press release.) “The new tool indexes every image from each of the leading microstock vendors allowing for side-by-side comparison of pricing, licensing models and terms. The new site was developed by PressFoto, an emerging microstock company offering some of the most aggressive pricing and flexible licensing models in the business.”

Under construction: a database of Australian Aboriginal languages, many of which have lost all their speakers. “ASHLEY HALL: At the time of European colonisation, there were more than 200 Indigenous languages across Australia; there are far fewer now. Nonetheless, linguists are working to preserve what’s left in a digital archive.” (This is a transcript, a link on the left plays the story.)

Danny Sullivan wonders, in a long and thoughtful article: What if Google really did kill Google+?

The Getty Museum has added another 77,000 images to its open content archive. “Of those images, 72,000 come from the Foto Arte Minore collection, a rich gallery of photographs of Italian art and architecture, taken by the photographer and scholar Max Hutzel (1911-1988).”

Fun! 7 Online Design Tools for Creating Sharable Visuals.

Have you started playing with your new Twitter profile yet? Here are some tips for optimizing it.

Pinterest has added a new “Guided Search” feature. “Guided search represents the most significant of three announcements Pinterest made tonight at its headquarters. The company also is adding the ability for users to add custom categories within the app to better focus on their interests. (Up until now users have only been able to choose among the 32 original categories that Pinterest launched with.) The company also released improvements to related pins, which now show relevant items underneath 90 percent of pins on the network.” Good morning, Internet…

I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you. Feel free to comment on the blog, or @ResearchBuzz on Twitter. Thanks!

Obituaries Australia Provides Information on Over 2700 Australians

Obituaries Australia Home Page

Obituaries Australia Home Page

In April, The Australian National University launched Obituaries Australia, an online Web site that aggregates information on over 2700 Australians, in obituary or biography format. It’s available at http://oa.anu.edu.au/. You can search this Web site by keyword, of course, but there are a number of ways you can browse, too. You can browse by date of death, date of birth (I saw biographies going back to the 1700s), name, author (who wrote the item), or publication (where the item appeared.) You can also browse by lists (awards, clubs, military service, etc.)

I did a name search for Smith and got 26 results. Results include name of the person, birth-death years, and sometimes a little blurb about the person (“diplomat, public servant and Japanophile,” “ironmonger,” “surgeon and photographer,” etc.) “Surgon and Photographer” looked interesting, so I clicked on the obituary for Julian Augustus Smith.

This detail page had the obituary as it originally appeared in The Argus (there’s also a link to the original), a picture of Dr. Smith, and a sidebar with a life summary including birth and death dates, religious influence, and occupation. The items in the sidebar are clickable so you can browse lists of Australians by various characteristics — occupation, cause of death, religious influence, etc. There’s even a list of bushrangers available which includes Jack Donohoe.)

Sometimes the biographies are more extensive, as for Issy Smith. Sergeant Smith’s obituary information includes links to another obituary, several links to articles about him in newspaper archives, and a very extensive sidebar.

I’m impressed with both the amount of information here but also the external links to newspaper archives and the extensive cross-linking. Useful reference site.

Australian Women’s Weekly in National Library of Australia Digital Archive

Hat tip to PC World Australia for the pointer to the new digital archive of Australian Women’s Weekly, brought to you by the National Library of Australia. This archive spans 10 June 1933 to 15 December 1982, which is 2500 issues and 220,000 pages, totaling about 275,000 articles. That’s not small, but I did find some pages that were listed in the search engine but weren’t viewable yet. You can do a keyword search at http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/title/112.

The search box is in the upper right, and you have to make sure you click on the “Limit to issues of this title” checkbox underneath the search form, but I love this publication home page. There’s a browsing mechanism, citation information, and RSS feeds for new articles that are added to the collection.

I did a search for fashion hats, always fun when you’re searching an archive that spans so many years, and got over 4100 results.

Search results include title and date of article and some context. Some articles are not available, with a notation marked COMING SOON, but each of those COMING SOON articles offers an RSS feed for an update on when that article is available.

For the available articles, click on a title and you’ll get a page viewer with your search keywords highlighted. You can zoom and pan as you’d expect. To the left of the viewer there’s a machine-generated transcript (which you’re invited to correct) with spaces for tags and comments and lists. Quick links allow you to print the article, save it as a PDF, or view it as a JPG.

This archive is extensive but in addition a lot of effort has gone into making it easy to use and follow up. Excellent.

Search National Library of Australia Images by Color

Hat tip to ResourceShelf to the pointer about a new resource from the National Library of Australia — the ability to search about 18,500 images from the Library’s collection by color.

You can try it yourself at http://ll04.nla.gov.au/ . It’s pretty simple; pick a color from the color grid on the left. (There’s a menu beneath it to more precisely specify the color for which you’re searching.) As soon as you pick the color you’ll get images from the Library’s collection. I picked a subdued yellow and got nine images which looked like drawings, paintings, and possibly a photograph.

You can click on an image and you’ll get an overlay window showing the image and what colors it has in it. But that’s all. You won’t get a larger image, you won’t get any more detail about the image, and as far as I can see you won’t even get a link to the original image in the archive.

So this is an interesting toy, possibly useful for designers who want to look at the way color is used — but it’s not a sideways tool for discovery in the National Library of Australia’s image collection.

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