At the Ref Desk (7/2/19): Weird Request of the Week (WRW): patron needed help logging into a pc workstation with scanner. After I helped her log in she asked, 'can I fax from here?' [more...]
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Reference

Beware of What You Ask

Submitted by Leo Klein on Tue, 5/18/10 (9:15am)

A student came by as I was closing up wanting to know if we kept records of people's searches. His hard drive had crashed and all the work he had done the day before, researching for a paper, was now lost.

I explained that the only way to do this is by creating an account on the individual databases (where possible) and then saving the search results to that. Beyond that, there's little record of what people do. And that's a good thing.

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Avalanche of abandoned flash drives turn up at Reference

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 5/8/10 (11:11am)

Hot News from Reference: an avalanche of flash drives left abandoned in lab computers by forgetful students have been turning up at the Reference Desk. Will there be no end to this deluge? Our only hope: microchips implanted in all of us coming with at least 16 gb of disk space.

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Live-Blogging the Empty Library

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 3/27/10 (10:38am)

10:30am: What do you do as a reference librarian when you're the only one who showed up for work (hello Circulation)?

11:00am: The person supposed to be at Circulation just called saying he was stuck at the Airport in Minneapolis.

11:26am: Problem: A student came by wanting to charge out a book. I explained we didn't have anyone with access to the system. He said he'd come back later in the day.

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Wireless Now a Standard Library Feature in People's Minds

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 2/27/10 (10:45am)

Just got an interesting question over the phone today. A woman called the reference desk wanting to know if we were open to the public. She said she wasn't a student from DePaul.

"Yes," I replied, explaining that she had access to the books and print journals.

"Do we have access to the wireless as well?"

I had to explain that, like most schools, you need a student ID and password to access the wireless here. I was impressed though by her assumption that wireless was now part of what it means for a library to be "open".

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Here I am sitting at DePaul reference with one IM request popping up after another (we use LibraryH3lp), and I read the following from a study of "Net Gen" undergrads done at Marywood University:

Research assistance preference

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Academic Admissions Requirements (Leo Klein U.)

Submitted by Leo Klein on Thu, 2/4/10 (6:38pm)

You don't get in -- no way, no how -- unless you own a flash drive (and know how to use it).

-- That way, if you're in a lab and the computer goes bonkers, you won't lose the paper you've been working on all day because you didn't save it.

Old Colleague, New Colleague

Submitted by Leo Klein on Fri, 1/22/10 (2:47pm)

An old colleague from NYU, Jen Schwartz, just started at DePaul. It's a small world.

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1st Day Back at Library Reference

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 1/2/10 (7:46pm)
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Meanwhile in other news...

Today was my first day back at Library Reference at DePaul. Winter Session starts on Monday.

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So Where's the Cake?

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 10/31/09 (12:56pm)

So the email goes out: "pumpkin nut/raisin bread" in the Reference Workroom.

Sounds nice, huh? So what's left when the Saturday crew finally shows up? You're looking at it.

Outrageous!

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1st Robo-call at the Reference Desk

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 10/10/09 (10:22am)

Wow, I don't recall this ever happening: The phone rings at the reference desk. I pick it up. And the recorded message begins, "This is a message from Credit Card Services".

"Credit Card Services"? At the University? I have to admit that it took me a moment to think about this. Then I hanged up.

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