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This blog and RSS feed is used to send out alerts to members of Trinity College Dublin and those wishing to visit the Library.

Details on admission requirements, opening hours, borrowing rights, and access to the Library’s catalogues and databases can be found at the Library website.

Visitors wishing to see the Book of Kells and the Long Room may visit the Book of Kells website.

Electrical Upgrades, Lecky Library – from 25/08/16

Work on installing power sockets with USB outlets on Lecky Library desks will commence on Thursday 25th August 2016.

This work is welcomed as it will add 178 power outlets to the 63 that were installed last summer. So, although we are delighted the work will go ahead as planned, nevertheless we are aware that there will be some disruption to regular users of the space.

The work will include the following installation:

(1) Lower Lecky – on 86 desks

(2) Upper Lecky – on 92 desks

…and will run for approximately 4/5 working days in the Lower Lecky, followed by 4/5 working days in the Upper Lecky.

During the works, as there will be some disruption in the area, we would advise you to seek quieter study areas elsewhere in the BLU Libraries complex.

Apologies for this disruption.

Britannica Academic (formerly Encyclopaedia Britannica)

Summer is a time when our subscription e-resource providers often choose to launch new platforms and unveil improved, expanded offerings. One of these, this summer, is Britannica Academic, the direct descendant of Encyclopaedia Britannica.

Britannica Academic: Some advantages of its new platform:

  • There are improved search and filtering options.
  • It is possible to track every change and addition to an article using the ‘Article History’ option.
  • Primary materials can be found in the add-on resource (automatic trial enabled by Britannica, until 12 September), ‘Original Sources’.

Britannica Digital Learning offers free 30-minute online training webinars. Sign-up, details and dates.

Have a look at Britannica Academic, or at any of the Library’s subscription e-resources, by visiting our Databases and E-Books page on the Library’s web site.

The Library provides access to its subscription databases, both on and off campus, to TCD-affiliated readers, but remember that you must access these resources via the Library site to be recognised as being ‘TCD-affiliated’.

Early Irish Manuscripts Project Shortlisted for Major Award

Some of you may already know about the Early Irish Manuscripts Project, a conservation, research and digitisation campaign focused on four of the Library’s most important early medieval insular Gospel Books funded by the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Art Conservation Project.

We are delighted that the Bank of America, Merrill Lynch & Trinity College Dublin have been shortlisted for the Allianz Business to Arts Award 2016 for Best Large Sponsorship. The three other contenders are projects spearheaded by Sky, An Post and RTÉ, so keep your fingers crossed as the competition is tough!

The Awards will take place on Monday, September 19th 2016 at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre. Time to dust off our dinner jackets and ballgowns…

Old Library Maintains Full Accreditation with Museum Standards Programme of Ireland

MSPI - 16We are delighted that the Old Library of Trinity College Dublin has maintained full accreditation under the Museum Standards Programme of Ireland.

Awarded Full Accreditation in 2012 for the first time, the Assessor said that “as with the original application for Accreditation, the quality of the application and standards demonstrated during the site visit was extremely high, reflecting the continued professionalism and commitment of the staff at the Old Library.

“The Old Library is currently facing a future where they are responding to rapidly increasing visitor figures and audience expectations for digital access to collections, whilst balancing these drivers with the needs of a nationally important collection. The Old Library has continued to provide a high level of collections care and access in a challenging environment. In particular areas of work, particularly collections care, preservation and training, the work of the staff continues to exceed current best practice and stands as an exemplar of high quality stewardship.”

Susie Bioletti, Keeper of Preservation and Conservation, and Anne-Marie Diffley, Visitor Services Manager, accepted the award from Conor Newman, Chairman of the Heritage Council.

The Heritage Council’s main commitment to collections care comes through its support of the Museum Standards Programme for Ireland (MSPI). This important initiative, with participants from a wide range of Irish collecting institutions, sets out to raise standards of care across Irish museums and galleries.

This programme, the first of its kind in the Republic of Ireland, sets out to improve all aspects of Ireland’s museum practice. A voluntary programme, it has attracted involvement from across the cultural spectrum – from national institutions to small, volunteer-led organisations. It is complemented by a full training programme, with a targeted post-graduate museum course which is supported by the Heritage Council and delivered by the University of Ulster.

10th Annual PG Skills Development Summer School

Postgraduates of yore

Postgraduates of yore

The 10th Annual PG Skills Development Summer School will take place on Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th June. There will be contributions from the Library on EndNote as well as on how to approach a literature review. We will also be joining other speakers in a general session entitled “Promoting and Publishing Your Research”. The full schedule is available on the Student Learning Development website.

New Library Website Launches

Launching!We’re excited to have launched our new website! This reflects the visual identity of College, while retaining our own special features that have been requested by our users, such as our Stella Search box and daily Opening Hours on the homepage.

Importantly, the vast majority of pages are still located at their old addresses, so bookmarks and links will still work. However we’ve added a few new sections and pruned away outdated pages. We’ve spoke to students to see what works and what doesn’t, and will be implemented further changes later to keep making the website better for you.

We’re delighted the new site also works more effectively on phones and tablets, and are grateful as ever to our colleagues in the Digital unit for their hard work in bringing the site to life.

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Student Shelvers 2016/2017

The Library of Trinity College Dublin is now accepting applications for student shelvers for the 2016/2017 Academic year. Applicants must be students of Trinity College Dublin.

Student shelvers are employed to work a minimum of 10 hours per week in the Berkeley, Lecky, Ussher and Hamilton Libraries on the main campus, and the John Stearne Medical Library in the Trinity Centre, St James’ Hospital. The primary role of student shelvers is to sort, move and shelve library materials.

Full details of job description, selection criteria and the application form are available online here. You will require your TCD network username and password to access these pages.

The closing date for receipt of applications is 12 noon, Friday 5th August. No late applications will be accepted.

If you have any queries please see contact details on the application site.

NEW online resource for the Library: French-language E-Books, Autrement Mêmes collection / dirigée par Roger Little

The Library of Trinity College Dublin has recently purchased access to 51 titles from the Autrement Mêmes collection, published by L’Harmattan, Paris. 

Autrement Memes collection Le ConquérantAbove is one title from the collection directed by Professor Roger Little (Fellow Emeritus (French), TCD). The Library has purchased access to 51 titles, out of a total of 122, to date.

According to Professor Little, the texts in the collection ‘are difficult to find, often available only in specialised libraries, sometimes indeed extremely rare […] all genres and all relevant periods are covered, mainly prose texts, however, from the 18th century to the latter part of French colonialism’.

Each title can be found catalogued individually in the Trinity Library system, Stella, and all 51 titles can be seen together on the database Autrement Mêmes.

For a full list of TCD Library’s databases of journals and E-Books, current, new, and on trial, use the Databases and E-Books link on the Library homepage, found under the Stella search box.

Clíona Ní Shúilleabháin, Electronic Resources Librarian.

Passing of Professor John Byrne

Professor John Byrne, who has been called “the father of Irish computing”, passed away on April 16 at the age of 82. Prof. Byrne had a long and illustrious career in Trinity College Dublin, and was a great friend to the Library.

Thanks to his interest in the Library, our 1872 Printed Catalogue was digitised in 2005 as part of a final year project for Computer Science students initiated by Prof. Byrne. It is incredible to think that the same module is still in use today, a decade later, and has been of benefit to thousands of scholars – quite a legacy.

In the 1990s he was an adviser to the Stella Project, where records from the card catalogue and the periodicals catalogue were digitised and added to the online catalogue, and in the 2000s advised the Mellon Project tasked with digitising the Accessions Catalogue.

As mentioned, Prof. Byrne was a great friend to the Library and was very interested in our work – especially when it came to anything to do with computers! He was an exceptionally courteous user of the Library and very grateful for any help that the Library Staff gave him.

The Irish Times obituary gives more details of this great of Irish computing.

Trevor Peare, the Library’s former Keeper of Readers’ Services adds:

John Byrne told me that his interest in the Library was initially sparked by his discovery in the Library of a very rare edition of Galileo’s works – most of the other copies had been publicly burned soon after publication. The record for the book was “buried” in the Printed Catalogue of 1872. At the time there were only three physical copies of the Printed Catalogue in the Library.

This led him on to his work to make the Printed Catalogue more readily available to  scholars. He supervised a succession of Masters’ students working on Optical Character Recognition (OCR) while it was a very new area of research and application. John found a full set of unbound sheets for the Catalogue in a basement on Front Square which he was able to use for his project.

John’s computerised Printed Catalogue is a masterful demonstration of a powerful interface to a computer system – although the indexing and searching is all automated, the reader is still able to view an image of the appropriate entry in the original Printed Catalogue, so as to browse adjacent entries. It is well worth having a look at his “introduction” on the opening screen and his help screens are models too.

He was still working on some developments on the Catalogue right up to a month or so of his death – he most recently introduced a facility where an unsuccessful search in the Printed Catalogue was redirected to the Stella Search system. John was never one to let things sit as they were – always developing and improving on what had gone before.

John was well known in the Library during the 1970s and 1980s. As well as working on the Printed Catalogue project, he knew his way around the staff areas and was often seen inspecting the newly catalogued books on their way to the shelves – a genuine Renaissance Man, with a huge range of interests, but always kind and courteous to everyone – and meticulous about borrowing and returning his loans.

The Transient Transference of Memory – an Exhibition in the BLU

dec_vt100_terminal DSC_0008As part of the memory-themed programme of events for Trinity Week, a small exhibition has been set up in the Orientation Space in the BLU. Comprising of a very old VT100 terminal (which older readers may remember as the first type of machine to run the electronic version of the Library Catalogue) and some older storage media from the 1980s onwards, it’s a fun and nostalgic look at times gone by. So if you’re interested in the link between computer memory and memory loss and preservation (or you just want to see a load of old computer junk) then take a look at this mini-exhibition in the Orientation Space, which will be there until this Friday…