Blackwell ejournals move to Wiley Interscience

Wiley has announced that the content and access rights of Blackwell Synergy journals will move to Wiley Interscience on July 1, 2008.  The Synergy site will be discontinued, and links to Synergy URLs will be redirected.  

Read the press release and FAQ sheet: Blackwell Synergy Journals Moving to Wiley InterScience


Web page design trends reports that broadband users are experiencing slightly shorter response times despite the fact that the average web page has tripled in size since 2003. However, response times for the 43% of households that use dial-up continues to climb.

Another note I found of interest, since my institution blocks streaming video, is that the use of streaming media has increased 100% each year, up 600% between 2000 and 2005. However, more than 87% of streaming media are abandoned in the first 10 seconds, wasting up to 20% of server bandwidth.

It’s important to know one’s target audience, the article says; for example, charities may find more of their users in the dial-up group. The article goes on to give suggestions for reducing the size of a web page.

Second Life & Medical Libraries

I’ve just tagged another article about virtual medical education in Second Life.

The relevance of Second Life to medical libraries was a controversial topic at MLA ’08. One view is that Second Life is overhyped and our customers are not there; we should not waste our resources on it. The other side points out that Second Life reaches users who can’t come to the library for one reason or another — homebound caregivers, stay-at-home parents, people whose disabilities make travel difficult. They point to a large Second Life community of health information users and providers.

I attended a couple of intriguing presentations by University of Michigan librarians, who moved into Second Life when its medical school began to develop its virtual presence. Gillian Mayman et al presented an entertaining skit demonstrating a reference transaction in Second Life; it reminded me of staffing the reference desk at the community college, where some students think nothing of answering their cell phones in the midst of the process. The slides for another presentation by PF Anderson, Second Life for Engagement, Outreach, and Building Interdisciplinary Communities of Learning, are available at Slideshare.

I found it very interesting, but since I work in a hospital system that blocks streaming video due to bandwidth issues, I don’t see Second Life in my worklife in the forseeable future.

CINAHL Clinical Queries now available

Press release from EBSCO:

In response to customer feedback, and through collaboration with
McMaster University, the EBSCOhost versions of CINAHL, CINAHL
Plus, CINAHL with Full Text, and CINAHL Plus with Full Text now
offer the ability to employ Clinical Queries as part of any search.

Clinical Queries, designed for clinician use, allow users to limit
searches with specific search strategies, to aid in retrieving
scientifically sound and clinically relevant study reports indexed
in CINAHL databases. Searches can be refined using specific search
strategies designed to produce results in five research areas:

  • Therapy – High Sensitivity
  • Prognosis
  • Review
  • Qualitative
  • Causation (Etiology)

As research may require different emphasis, three strategies are provided for each area.

  • High Sensitivity is the broadest search, to include ALL relevant material. It may also include less relevant materials.
  • High Specificity is the most targeted search to include only the most relevant result set, may miss some relevant materials.
  • Best Balance retrieves the best balance between Sensitivity and Specificity.

Please visit EBSCO’s Support Site ( to learn about all of EBSCO’s products, search among thousands of FAQs, download Flash tutorials, Help Sheets or User Guides, or communicate with EBSCO’s Technical Support Representatives online, via EBSCO’s Support Form, or by telephone:

In the United States and Canada:(800) 758-5995
Outside of the United States and Canada: access code, (800) 3272-6000


Marcie Brown
Technical Communications Manager
EBSCO Publishing
10 Estes Street
Ipswich, MA01938

MHSLA Research Committee poster

MHSLA Research Committee poster (powerpoint)

I’d like to share the MHSLA Research Committee poster with you, but I’m having problems uploading and displaying the file. This is my third try, let’s see if something legible turns up this time. If not, well, watch this space. I’ll try again.

Something new…

… on  MHSLA Blog.

Lots of new ideas from MLA 2008 … and I’m putting the first to work today. In the left sidebar, you will now “Sandy’s Reading List.” As I read interesting articles on the Internet, I’ll be tagging them in The titles of those I’ve bookmarked most recently will appear in the sidebar; click “Sandy’s Reading List” to see the rest.

My first shot at social bookmarking. Try it out!

MLA ’08

Greetings from MLA ’08! 

The Research Committee presented its poster today: Health Sciences Libraries in Michgian: Connecting to Emerging Web 2.0 Technologies.  The poster was well received. Some poster viewers were interested in our findings, as they were looking at the same issues.  Eric Schnell, who will be part of Monday’s Panel Discussion on “Top Technology Trends” pointed out that Web 2.0 has been around for 5 years now, and we should be moving on to something else.  In particular, he suggests that we would be better off experimenting and learning on our own, rather than waiting for an annual conference to find out what’s happening.  I agree, by the time a technology trend is explored by early adopters, noted by conference planners, and added to a conference schedule, the technology wave has moved on. However, one of the barriers that librarians expressed in the MHSLA survey is  lack of time for learning the technologies. One of the values of a hands-on workshop is that it occurs away from the workplace in a setting that allows learning time uninterrupted by the daily demands of providing library services and attending to customers.

I’ll be interested to see what Schnell and his fellow panelists identify as the “next big thing.”

MLA members unable to attend the conference have an opportunity to view a live webcast of the Wednesday May 21 plenary session “Web 2.0 Tools for Librarians: Description, Demonstration, Discussion, and Debate.”  For details see the MLA website: