At the Ref Desk (8/13/18): Complaints upstairs about someone playing the trumpet in one of the computer labs. Oy. [more...]
Subscribe to RSS - Databases

Databases

Mommy, What's a 'Manila Folder'?

Submitted by Leo Klein on Thu, 9/27/12 (6:54pm)

I just had to laugh when in this otherwise informative usability study on LibGuides, I came across the following sentence:

"In the EMU Library’s initial LibGuides implementation, the option for tabs with rounded corners was used to resemble the design of manila file folders and increase the association with the file-folder metaphor."

Do kids these days even know what a 'Manila folder' is?

Topic: 

Oops, Research Database ERIC Giving Out Soc. Sec. Numbers

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 9/15/12 (3:28pm)

Opps-a-daisy: One of the top databases for education, ERIC, says it's been publishing Social Security numbers along with research data since the days of microfiche. Only now, thanks to the Web, they finally noticed. Huh?

Dear ERIC Community,

In early August we discovered that sensitive personally identifiable information appeared in some full text documents contained in the ERIC collection. Specifically, social security numbers and other highly sensitive information were found in multiple documents and in a way that could not easily be isolated. For that reason, we had to temporarily disable access to many full text documents.

Although these documents had been publicly available in microfiche for many years, the advent of Internet search engines has made it easier to find this information. Our number one concern is to ensure that any full-text documents we provide do not violate any individual's privacy. We believe that if any of us were to have our privacy compromised by an ERIC document, we would want the same consideration.

You can read the rest here...

Topic: 
Institution: 

Whither MySQL?

Submitted by Leo Klein on Mon, 5/18/09 (8:16pm)
Quite a chunk of open-source software, including Drupal, is dependent on MySQL for its database back-end. So it's kind of unsettling, to say the least, when the ownership of this free software passes into the hands of its main commercial competitor, Oracle. As Ryan Paul over at Ars Technica explains:
Oracle's recent move to acquire Sun has placed the responsibility for advancing MySQL development into the hands of the project's most prominent competitor. The move is of deep concern to MySQL stakeholders and has created some uncertainty about the future of the popular open source database system.
The article goes on to discuss an interesting alliance of MySQL developers whose purpose is to "insulate MySQL from Oracle's competitive interests by giving the collective MySQL community enough leverage to control the project's destiny." More here...