There’s nothing quite as exciting as welcoming students back to campus and to the library (including SLAC members!).  I want to personally thank everyone who has been putting up with this week’s long stretch of extreme heat.  Your dedication and patience and hard work keeping the library open and as comfortable as possible are greatly appreciated.

Earlier this week several of us attended a webinar sponsored by the Learning Spaces Collaboratory  – a national network of people who are deeply into “what we know about planning learning spaces and what we need to know”.  The webinar was about makerspaces, and it was a great warm-up for a meeting we had yesterday with several faculty and leaders from the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Our agenda was pretty rich:  handing off Poly Projects, the student-led networking / match-making idea that began as a winning entry in the library/OCOB video contest, to the on-campus Hatchery; coordinating the library’s support for CIE’s Elevator Pitch competition – this includes the One Button Studio, which will open on October 1; and, next steps in creating a detailed proposal for bringing CIE’s Innovation Sandbox / maker program into the library on the first floor.

When you have a few minutes (eight, to be exact), take the time to watch this wonderful video prepared by Dr. Erika Rogers and the Graduate Education office, about the graduate student Thesis Coaching Clinic.  Piloted last spring, the clinic will be continuing throughout this academic year on Thursdays from 3pm-8pm in the library’s 303 study room opposite the Grad Student study room. Added attraction: the video stars several library student assistants (outstanding performances!).  It’s a great resource – and will soon be joined by other thesis support resources being gathered by our librarians into a thesis support libguide just for grad students.  Meanwhile, Adriana has been meeting with Dawn Janke (writing center director) and Dr. Rogers to deepen this great library-writing-coaching relationship through other programming.  It seems fitting that the 10-millionth download from our Digital Commons is…a  2015 Cal Poly masters thesis!   We’ll be celebrating this milestone with a story and press release next week.

The emergence of digital data as a means of storing and organizing observations, descriptions, measuremeopentreeoflifents, and other records and analyses is one of the biggest stories of our generation.  It’s also a long story – one that reaches back deep into the past (and can bring it to life in new ways) – and one that will reach forward beyond our imagination.  That’s why libraries, universities, research organizations, government, and citizens are becoming aware of and interested in our collective need to manage, and keep, all that data.  The Open Tree of Life project, whose first draft was just published last week in PNAS,  is an inspiring example of the new ways people are organizing around these new challenges and possibilities.  One of their findings is that there is still a lot of important scientific data that has not been digitized:  “most published phylogenies are not available in digital formats that can be summarized into a tree of life” – a great example of the constantly shifting ‘both/and’ relationship between print and digital information.

Have a wonderful weekend,