Sheep Showcase

Have you ever met Jordan, the Library Cat? What if there was another furry animal in the Library, maybe not as alive, but nonetheless as interesting?

The Main Library’s newest Fringe Festival exhibition opens on Friday 31st July 2015, featuring Dolly, the sheep!

Showcasing not only Dolly herself (on loan courtesy of National Museums Scotland), but also rare books, archive documents, pictures, sound and film clips from the University of Edinburgh’s Special Collections, presenting all the research that eventually led to the creation of Dolly, the first animal in the world to be cloned from an adult cell.

Towards Dolly books

A sample of the University collections on display

The Fly Room

The Fly Room – from the Towards Dolly exhibition

The Curator, Clare Button’s words about the exhibition:

Dolly is the most famous chapter in Edinburgh’s long genetics history. This exhibition tells the wider story of the many pioneering discoveries which have taken place here, taking our visitors ‘towards Dolly’ and beyond.

We, here at the Library Annexe, are happy to be able to contribute with a few books from our collections. These are:

If you become interested in the subject, and would like to have a look at these books, they will be requestable again after the end of the exhibition, through DiscoverEd.

Further links:

University of Edinburgh Exhibitions: Towards Dolly

News and Events: Dolly stars in genetics exhibition

Towards Dolly

‘Towards Dolly: A Century of Animal Genetics in Edinburgh’

The exhibition is free and open to the public from 31 July to 31 October 2015, Monday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm.

Exhibition Gallery, Main Library, George Square, Edinburgh, EH8 9LJ

Viktoria Varga, Library Annexe Assistant

Do it like they do on the DiscoverEd channel

DiscoverEd is the Library's discovery service and principal search tool

DiscoverED, the University of Edinburgh’s new one step information, discovery and delivery service, is now on-line and fully operational. You can request Library Annexe items using the new service; all you have to do is sign in and find the items using the search bar. As well as books, DiscoverEd will search ebooks, ejournal articles and more.

The first request for a Library Annexe item was placed by non-other than our staff member Dominic Tate. Congrats Dominic, we know how important this is to you. [You will receive your diploma in the mail shortly.]

You can read all about DiscoverED at the links below.

About DiscoverEd

Search for Library Annexe items and more

Marko Mlakar, Library Annexe Assistant

Recycling at the Annexe (It’s easy bein’ green)

We’re happy to report that the Library Annexe has joined University’s (recycling) efforts to make our planet a wee bit more sustainable. Every little step in the right direction helps, so next time when at the Library Annexe please recycle your litter.

“No dogma taught by the present civilization seems to form so insuperable an obstacle in the way of a right understanding of the relations which culture sustains to wildness, as that which declares that the world was made especially for the uses of men. Every animal, plant, and crystal controverts it in the plainest terms. Yet it is taught from century to century as something ever new and precious, and in the resulting darkness the enormous conceit is allowed to go unchallenged.”

John Muir

John Muir was a Scottish-American advocate of preservation of wilderness, born in Dunbar, East Lothian. If you want to know more about John Muir the University Library has a small collection of his works or you can visit his birthplace in Dunbar.

 Find “John Muir : apostle of nature” on the library catalogue

Recycling bins at the Library Annexe

Recycling bins at the Library Annexe

The University of Edinburgh’s Waste & Recycling department

John Muir on Wikipedia

Visit John Muir’s Birthplace

Information on the John Muir Way

Marko Mlakar, Library Annexe Assistant

Merry AnneXMAS!

Gallery

This gallery contains 5 photos.

Merry Christmas from Edinburgh’s Library Annexe! Here are a few festive images from some of the books that can be found within our general lending collections: Images are taken from the following Library Annexe books: I Saw Esau by Iona … Continue reading

Favourite character from a Scottish book

As part of Book Week Scotland, the Scottish Book Trust are holding a vote to discover the most loved characters in Scottish fiction. Here, the Library Annexe staff put forward their own favourites.

One of the interests that the Annexe team has in common is a love of sci-fi, which has begun a continuous stream of talk over lunch breaks and has culminated in the recent founding of the (small and unofficial) Annexe Science Fiction Club.

In this vein, and to promote what I think is one of the most underrated Scottish fiction books of the last century my nomination for favourite character goes to Maskull, the protagonist of David Lyndsay’s novel A Voyage to Arcturus.

Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay

Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay

Maskull, a man from Earth, awakens alone in a desert on the planet Tormance, seared by the suns of the binary star Arcturus, and embarks on an extraordinary pilgrimage with an extraordinary revelation at the end.

Having sold only 596 copies of its initial print run of 1430, Lyndsay’s masterpiece has since found a place as a classic of speculative fiction, earning itself a place in Harold Bloom’s the Western Canon, and earning words of praise by masters from J.R.R. Tolkien to Philip Pullman.

Even though he is very far from the type of hero one can relate to, I often find myself thinking about Maskull (and Lyndsay’s wildly imaginative world) when I really should be working.

And if that is not a sign of a good book, I don’t know what is.

Iraklis Pantopoulos, Library Annexe Assistant

Find A Voyage to Arcturus on the University of Edinburgh online catalogue

When picking a favourite Scottish character from literature, I am drawn to my two favourite Scottish authors, Muriel Spark and Iain Banks, but I find myself struggling to choose a best character. The lure of the enigmatic Long John Silver is also hard to resist – a character so well drawn, he has become the template for all pirates since.

The Invisibles Vol. 1

The Invisibles Vol. 1

However, I am going to collectively go for Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles, a weird and mysterious bunch, mainly because this is the book that introduced me to his work (and is the only DC comic that is ever likely to feature Greenock as a location).

Read about The Invisibles at Wikipedia

Morrison’s work on Batman has been exceptional, but somehow Batman doesn’t feel very Scottish… apart from in Batman: Scottish Connection, as drawn by Glaswegian Frank Quietly.

(It’s terrible).

Find Grant Morrison’s Arkham Asylum on the University of Edinburgh online catalogue

Why not vote for your favourite at the Book Week Scotland website?

Carl Jones, Library Annexe Supervisor

Book Week Scotland 2014

Today marks the start of Book Week Scotland; the annual celebration of books and reading, as organised by the Scottish Book Trust. Part of the activity for 2014 includes the writing of love letters to libraries. Well, I’ve worked in libraries for seven years, and I can’t quite imagine doing anything else, so I think it’s safe to say that I love libraries. The world of library professionals is ever changing, and you are like as likely to spend your time digitising obscure texts to be uploaded on-line these days as you are to find yourself shelving dusty volumes onto creaking shelves. However, like most people I meet, I was initially drawn to the strange allure of a room full of words and ideas, each sealed with a binding, and the incomparable magic of losing yourself inside their pages.

This week, why not use your local library services. If you are a student or a researcher, make sure you take full advantage of the University’s resources:

http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/information-services/library-museum-gallery

And, please, visit the Scottish Book Trust website and see what else is going on:

http://www.scottishbooktrust.com/book-week-scotland

There are events happening all over Scotland throughout the week, including this “festival of books” at the Edinburgh College of Art:

Bookmark’ at ECA

Carl Jones, Library Annexe Supervisor

Centre for the Study of World Christianity Update

With the print collections of the Centre for the Study of World Christianity (CSWC) Library, set up by Professor Andrew F. Walls, now having been in our care at the Annexe for a year, the time to say goodbye again is approaching.

Over his long career spanning over 50 years Professor Walls has held posts (among others) at the UK universities of Aberdeen, Liverpool Hope and, of course, Edinburgh. The scope and nature of his research led the magazine Christianity Today to describe him in 2007 as ‘a historian ahead of his time’ and ‘the most important person you don’t know’.

Professor Andrew F. Walls

Professor Andrew F. Walls set up the Centre for the Study of World Christianity at Edinburgh

As the topic of the influence exercised by different religious groups within British society is at the forefront of the public interest the moment, Professor Walls’s outlook on the way Christianity has moved and developed over the years is certainly pertinent. And his unique outlook is reflected in this collection that he gradually built up over the years of his career as a missionary and academic. Apart from Professor Walls’s main interest in the development on Christianity and Christian mission in Africa (which he saw as a reflection of the future of Christianity as a whole), the collection contains material that illuminates the way that the Western world has viewed eastern religions and vice versa. The CSWC collection is a unique resource on the topic. However, previous access to this collection was irregular.

When the collection was added to the fold at the Annexe, it was partially to make it accessible on a wider basis (via intra-library loans available to all users), but also to allow work to be performed on this diverse collection. Indeed, over the past year requests for CSWC items became a regular part of our workflow at the Annexe. As the collection has gradually grown over the years since its donation to the New College library by Professor Walls, now was an opportunity to streamline it and make easier to both access and manage.

To this end, here at the Annexe we have used our time with the World Christianity collection, in collaboration with colleagues throughout Information Services, in order to carefully work through the 11,000 items contained in it. A number of projects were set up to ensure that the material is consolidated, itemised, and re-classified. Each item (books and pamphlets) will be individually processed and the collection streamlined, ready for its re-integration to the Library of Congress stock at New College library later this summer. As an off-shoot of this process, a small part of the collection will be divided and sent to complement the Andrew Walls Collection currently held at Liverpool Hope University, forging a strong collaborative link.

Iraklis Pantopoulos, Library Annexe Assistant

[Article] Christianity Today: Historian Ahead of His Time

[Blog] The AnneXe Factor: Library of the Centre for the Study of World Christianity now at the Annexe

About the Centre for the Study of World Christianity

About New College Library

Overview of the Andrew F. Walls Centre, Liverpool Hope

The new Annexe Thesis Scanning Service proves popular

 

picture of a number of black-bound theses piled up in a cupboard over two shelves

The orders for thesis scans are definitely piling up.

After 9 months and 62 orders the pilot stage of the Thesis Scanning Service is over. When the service started I don’t think any of the team anticipated the impact it would have on our workload. We naively expected to be scanning one thesis a week but, with an average eight scan requests coming in each month, it isn’t unheard of for us to deliver five completed scans in one working week. This far exceeded our expectations and we have been pleasantly surprised by the uptake. In fact, now that the service is up and running, each of us devotes up to half of our working day to digitisation.

The project has highlighted the demand for digital copies of theses. Although only a handful have made their way onto ERA thus far those that have are benefiting from increased visibility and usage. Since being made available on ERA, Lance Whitehead’s 1994 thesis on the Clavichords of Hieronymus and Johann Haas has been viewed over 100 times and downloaded almost 40. On average the theses that have been available via ERA for more than 6 months have been downloaded 23 times each.

As more materials are added to the ERA database, their visibility on search engines such as Google Scholar will only increase, allowing our worldwide audience access to Edinburgh’s Research. Despite some of the interesting moments and challenges along the way, we feel the service has been a great success and all of us on Team Annexe are looking forward to seeing how it develops in the future.

Maria O’Hara, Library Annexe Assistant

Tom Kibble’s Thesis digitised and made available online

Picture of Tom Kibble

Professor Kibble is currently an Emeritus Professor at Imperial College London

During the summer graduations Tom Kibble will receive an Honorary Degree from the School of Physics & Astronomy for this work in Theoretical Physics. An Edinburgh graduate, Kibble contributed to the discovery of both the Higgs mechanism and the Higgs boson.

scanned image of handwritten formulas included in the thesis

All of the formulas in the the thesis were handwritten.

Ahead of the graduation ceremony in July the School requested the digitisation of his 1958 Thesis on Quantum Field Theory. As with all of our thesis scans the digitised copy will shortly be made available on ERA. In the meantime, the School of Physics & Astronomy will be using it for an exhibition on Kibble to coincide with the conferment of his honorary degree.

Maria O’Hara, Library Annexe Assistant

Edinburgh physician’s thesis digitised for inclusion in Japanese Museum Exhibit

unedited image of a scanned page

The Carbon Pages were so thin a sheet of paper had to be placed behind each page before it was scanned

Earlier this year a digital copy of the 1909 thesis of Scottish born anthropologist and physician Dr Neil Gordon Munro was ordered by a museum in Japan. The digitised work will be included in an exhibition at the Yokohama History Museum in the city where Munro lived and worked as director of the General Hospital for much of his career.

The thesis was challenging to digitise as much of it was typed on thin, see-though carbon paper. Many of the pages had become wrinkled with age and some were handwritten.

As the University of Edinburgh begins exploring distance learning tools and deploying courses via Coursera this thesis, submitted from Japan, demonstrates the Universities rich yet largely invisible history of distance learning.

For a closer look at the completed digital copy on ERA go to: http://www.era.lib.ed.ac.uk/handle/1842/6685

Maria O’Hara, Library Annexe Assistant