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Archive for August, 2007

Chemicals and Drugs in PubMed: Online Search Clinic

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

NLM and the National Training Center and Clearinghouse recently conducted an hour-long clinic that covered how the MeSH vocabulary is used to describe substance concepts and how to search PubMed for relevant articles. The webcast of this August 23rd clinic was recorded and is available, along with a transcript and copies of the presenter’s slides, at Questions posted by participants and NLM’s responses will be added soon.

Important “take home” messages from the clinic:

    1. In general, use unqualified substance names for the most comprehensive results. If you must qualify, use the [NM] search tag to find your substance as either a MeSH term or a supplementary concept or substance name.

    2. Check MeSH for previous indexing to capture the literaturre indexed prior to when the specific substance term was added to MeSH.

    3. Use pharmacological action terms for precision. To combine with a substance term, search the pharmacological action term as a MeSH heading [MH] so as not to explode and include all of the substances with that pharmacological action.

    4. Ignore stereoisomerism (identified as the letters D, L, DL, R, or S, or the symbols plus or minus before a substance name) when identifying substance names.

    5. If you can’t find a salt, try the general compound.

    6. Search by CAS registry number [RN] only after checking MeSH, as recently added substances do not have an RN.

    7. In chemical or molecular names, include all commas and hyphens, but delete parentheses or square brackets (which would be confused as nesting or qualifier symbols by PubMed).

    8. If you cannot find the chemical in MeSH, try searching by fragments of the chemical name in the MeSH database.

    9. Try the PubChem Substance database to find substances, especially if you have only the molecular name, structure, or weight.

Protecting Library & Archive Collections: Disaster Preparedness, Response & Recovery

Monday, August 27th, 2007

The Western States and Territories Preservation Assistance Service (WESTPAS) is offering a series of disaster planning workshops in Oregon and Washington.

The “Protecting Library & Archive Collections” workshops are presented in a 2-part sequence to produce the following outcomes for disaster preparedness activities:

* Complete a disaster plan by the end of Part 2.
* Learn how to train staff to implement your plan effectively.
* Set pre- and post-disaster action priorities for your collections.
* Learn how to use practical decision-making skills during an
* Experience salvage procedures for books, documents, and non-print

Currently scheduled workshops include: (more…)

Web 2.0: CDC invests in Second Life real estate

Monday, August 13th, 2007

Reprinted from “Government Health IT”
BY Ben Bain
Published on Aug. 10, 2007

A virtual world where millions of beautiful, eternally young people with designer bodies fly from island to island seems more like a setting for a beer commercial than a place where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would put its money.

But CDC’s decision to purchase its own island in the virtual world of Second Life makes real-world sense, said John Anderton, an associate director of communications science at CDC. His Second Life avatar, Hygeia Philo, is an attractive woman inspired by Hygeia, the ancient Greek goddess of health.

“Avatars have the good fortune of being sort of eternally youthful and healthy, but each of those avatars is connected to a person and those people do have real health needs,” he said. “It’s people’s health CDC is interested in, and people are using different tools to access [health] information.” (more…)

Exciting New Calendar

Wednesday, August 8th, 2007

The NN/LM PNR has a new Google calendar of regional and national events. Come see what we’re up to. We’d like to know what you’re up to, also. Take this opportunity to publicize what’s going on in your neighhborhood. Email us at if you have an event to add.

The Joy of Computing

Monday, August 6th, 2007

Joy of Computing book cover, “The Technology Place for Non-Profits” has released a free guide with practical tips and stories from small and rural libraries about keeping public computers available.

According to Chris Peters on the Washington State Library Updates Mailing List, “The Joy of Computing is an eighty page cookbook on the ins and outs of providing computing resources for patrons in small and rural libraries. Concise and easy-to-read (lots of lists and headings and links to further resources), the cookbook discusses fundraising and budgeting, IT planning, training for staff and patrons, and how to recruit and supervise technology volunteers. Furthermore, there’s a wealth of information on computer maintenance and security. The Joy of Computing is available for free download.”

Sample Tips from “The Joy of Computing”:

Short on space? Build a mobile computer lab.
The Colorado River Indian Tribes Library, located in Parker, AZ, currently has five public-access computers that are networked and equipped with a high speed DSL Internet connection. The library hopes to expand its lab by adding new machines, but its facilities are too small to accommodate any extra computers. To help solve this lack-of-space problem, Gil Harper — The Colorado River Indian
Tribes Library’s Computer Technology Specialist — devised the idea of a mobile computer lab, which would house nine wireless laptop computers. According to Harper, a mobile computer lab would not only give the library more room for computers, but would also bring technology to community residents who can’t travel to the library …

Convert your old computers into thin clients to squeeze life out of them.
Your library’s old computers may not be able to run the latest version of Windows, but they’re not junk! In fact, Kinney County Public Library in Brackettville, Texas, with the help of IT consultant Rodney Greensage was able to add eight computers to its lab using systems that would have been destined for the junkyard. By converting your computer network into what’s called a thin client (a network computer without a hard drive that runs its programs from a server), the libraries were able to squeeze life out of old computers and save money at the same time …

File your nails, not your invoices – use EFTS!

Thursday, August 2nd, 2007

DOCLINE now makes using EFTS (Electronic Fund Transfer System) easier for all sized libraries. Via the DOCLINE “Requests” tab, the EFTS Transaction File Builder allows you to review and select transactions to create a file to upload to EFTS for billing. It also allows you to exclude transactions if you don’t wish to bill for them.

NLM encourages all libraries to consider joining EFTS to reduce ILL costs and labor, and eliminate waiting for outgoing checks to be issued and incoming payments to be received. See the NLM Technical Bulletin article, EFTS and DOCLINE® Assist Libraries with Billing for more information.

Join the 52 Pacific Northwest Region Network members who already participate in EFTS and start saving time and money. If you have any questions, or to request EFTS promotional materials (bookmarks, labels, pamphlets or emery boards), please contact Patricia Devine.