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New features available for Spo...

April 12, 2021 by Catherine A. Aster Digital library The Digital Library Systems and Services Access and Discovery Team completed a multi-week development work cycle for Spotlight at Stanford on 7 April 2021. The work cycle focused on continuing the enhancement and support of the Spotlight at Stanford platform to ensure the greatest possible flexibility […]

LC Labs Letter: March 2021

LC Labs Letter: March 2021

March 2021 LC LABS LETTER A Monthly Roundup of News and Thoughts from the Library of Congress Labs Team Spotlight: Of the People program As we’ve shared before, the Of the People program connects the Library of Congress more deeply with Black, Hispanic, Indigenous and other communities traditionally underrepresented in library collections by expanding its collections, using technology […]

Volunteer Vignette: It’s just

In today’s post, I interview a By the People volunteer, Maddie, who has gone above and beyond! By the People is a crowdsourced transcription program launched in 2018 at the Library of Congress. Volunteer-created transcriptions are used to make digitized collections more accessible and discoverable on You can read our other Volunteer Vignettes on the Signal here and here. Carlyn: What […]

Stay “in the loop” with LC Lab

In 2020, LC Labs began the Humans in the Loop experiment to explore ways to responsibly combine crowdsourcing experiences and machine learning workflows. As you may know from following along with LC Labs’ investigations into these methods, machine learning’s reliance on pattern recognition and training decisions made by human annotators makes it really good at […]

Computing Cultural Heritage in...

Olivia Dorsey, Innovation Specialist at the Library of Congress. Olivia is working on Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud (CCHC). We’re thrilled to share that Olivia Dorsey recently joined the LC Labs team as an Innovation Specialist! Olivia will be working on the Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud (CCHC) initiative at the Library. The […]

A Disproportionate Pandemic

Jack Miller dusts shelves at the main location of Gail Borden Public Library District in Elgin, Illinois, pre-pandemic. Photo: Gail Borden Public Library District in Elgin, Illinois Before COVID-19 came along, 18-year-old Jack Miller, who has autism, visited the main location of Gail Borden Public Library District (GBPLD) in Elgin, Illinois, three times a week. […]

Emerging Leaders: Where Are Th...

The American Library Association’s (ALA) annual Emerging Leaders (ELs) program recognizes the best and brightest new leaders in the library profession, allowing them to get on a fast track at the Association by participating in planning groups, networking, gaining an inside look at ALA structure, and serving in leadership capacities early in their careers. At […]

The Road to Normal

Valerie Wagley, counselor at Fair Oaks Elementary School in Cobb County, Georgia, reads to kids at a bookmobile stop in summer 2020. Photo: Kelli Wood When Goochland County (Va.) Public Schools abruptly stopped in-person learning at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic last March, school librarians Zoe Parrish, Sarah Smith, and Susan Vaughn worried that […]

Users at the Center of Everyth...

Photo: ©Monkey Business/Adobe Stock In her professional life, coauthor Lauren Stara has worked for three architectural firms, one zoo, one multinational corporation, two museums, five universities, three public libraries, and one state library agency. She has also done freelance work or consulting in both architecture and librarianship. Over those 32 years, she has worked in […]

By the Numbers: Deaf History a...

Deaf actor Linda Bove played Linda the Librarian on Sesame Street for 31 years. Photo illustration: YouTube (screenshot); ©R. Gino Santa Maria/Adobe Stock (television) 15Number of years National Deaf History Month has been celebrated. In 2006, the American Library Association (ALA) and National Association of the Deaf announced the month would be observed March 13–April […]

A Movement Grows in Brooklyn

Items from the Greenpoint collection, including a newspaper, a photo of an implosion of natural gas storage tanks, and an award presented to Greenpoint Against Smell and Pollution. Photos: Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library, Brooklyn Collection Greenpoint, New York, a historically working-class Polish immigrant community, sits at the confluence of the East River and Newtown Creek, […]

Fighting the Spread

©wei/Adobe Stock When the COVID-19 pandemic started spreading throughout the US in early 2020, Jessica Daly, consumer health librarian at hospital network Orlando (Fla.) Health, knew it was time for her—and other information specialists in the medical field—to step up. “As medical professionals and librarians, we tell people what to do, but we don’t often […]

Think Inside the Box

A kamishibai box is a small stage containing a sequence of cards that illustrate traditional folktales. Photo: Geo1208 The performance begins like this: Erica Siskind, librarian at Oakland (Calif.) Public Library, rides her bike to the front of the room, parks it, and pulls from her basket two sticks and a small wooden box. Clack, […]

Where Monarchs Reign

Human visitors explore the butterfly garden at Kokomo–Howard County (Ind.) Public Library’s South branch. Photo: Kokomo–Howard County (Ind.) Public Library When members of the Howard County (Ind.) Master Gardener Association became enchanted by the idea of creating a local butterfly habitat, their first stop was Kokomo–Howard County Public Library (KHCPL). Not for books and information […]

Browse group feature now avail...

We’re pleased to announce the availability of a new Spotlight at Stanford feature. Exhibit creators can now set up and configure browse groups for their digital exhibits. This high priority feature has been requested by Stanford Libraries staff as well as many external Spotlight stakeholders.  Browse groups is an optional feature that can be useful […]

Thoughts on fighting QAnon – H

Thoughts on fighting QAnon – How can so many people believe things that are obviously untrue?

Well that was a sobering read. A few weeks ago the following post by Barbara Fister was circulated at MPOW: Lizard People in the Library. We were supposed to have a discussion about it, but I wasn’t able to make the Zoom time, so I didn’t read it then. Yesterday someone pointed out that the […]