Library News

Stars of fortune /

New At the Library - 6 hours 16 min ago

    ISBN: 9780425280102
    Author: Roberts, Nora

Categories: Library News

Brave New Workplace: Text Mining

LITA Blog - Wed, 2015-11-25 09:00
Text Mining Visualization from McGill University

Hi there, future text miners. Before we head down the coal shoot together, I’ll begin by saying this, and I hope it will reassure you- no matter your level of expertise, your experience in writing code or conducting data analysis, you can find an online tool to help you text mine.

The internet is a wild and beautiful place sometimes.

But before we go there, you may be wondering- what’s this Brave New Workplace business all about? Brave New Workplace is my monthly discussion of tech tools and skill sets which can help you adapt and know a new workplace. In our previous two installments I’ve discussed my own techniques and approaches to learning about your coworkers’ needs and common goals. Today I’m going to talk about text mining the results of your survey, but also text mining generally.

Now three months into my new position, I have found that text mining my survey results was only the first step to developing additional awareness of where I could best apply my expertise to library needs and goals. I went so far as to text mine three years of eresource Help Desk tickets and five years of meeting notes. All of it was fun, helpful, and revealing.

Text mining can assist you in information gathering in a variety of ways, but I tend to think it’s helpful to keep in mind the big three.

1. Seeing the big picture (clustering)
2. Finding answers to very specific questions (question answering)
3. Hypothesis generation (concept linkages)

For the purpose of this post, I will focus on tools for clustering your data set. As with any data project, I encourage you to categorize your inputs and vigorously review and pre-process your data. Exclude documents or texts that do not pertain to the subject of your inquiry. You want your data set to be big and deep, not big and shallow.

I will divide my tool suggestions into two categories: beginner and intermediate. For my beginners just getting started, you will not need to use any programming language, but for intermediate, you will.


I know, you’ve seen a million word clouds.

Start yourself off easy and use This simple site will make you a pretty word cloud,  and also provide you with a comprehensive word frequencies list. Those frequencies are concept clusters, and you can begin to see trends and needs in your new coworkers and your workplace goals. This is a pretty cool, and VERY user friendly way to get started text mining.

WordClouds eliminates frequently used words, like articles, and gets you to the meat of your texts. You can copy paste text or upload text files. You can also scan a site URL for text, which is what I’ve elected to do as an example here, examining my library’s home page. The best output of WordClouds is not the word cloud. It’s the easily exportable list of frequently occurring words.

WordCloud Frequency List

To be honest, I often use this WordClouds’ function in advance of getting into other data tools. It can be a way to better figure out categories of needs, a great first data mining step which requires almost zero effort. With your frequencies list in hand you can do some immediate (and perhaps more useful) data visualization in a simple tool of your choice, for instance Excel.


Excel Graphs for Visualization


Intermediate Tools

Depending on your preferred programming language, many options are available to you. While I have traditionally worked in SPSS for data analysis, I have recently been working in R. The good news about R versus SPSS- R is free and there’s a ton of community collaboration. If you have a question (I often do) it’s easy to find an answer.

Getting started in R with text mining is simple. You’ll need to install the packages necessary if you are text mining for the first time.

Then save your text files in a folder titled: “texts,” and load those in R. Once in, you’ll need to pre-process your text to remove common words and punctuation.  This guide is excellent in taking you through the steps to process your data and analyze it.

Just like our WordClouds, you can use R to discover term frequencies and visualize them. Beyond this, working in R or SPSS or Python can allow you to cluster terms further. You can find relationships between words and examine those relationships within a dendrogram or by k-means. These will allow you to see the relationships between clusters of terms.

Ultimately, the more you text mine, the more familiar you will become with the tools and analysis valuable in approaching a specific text dataset. Get out there and text mine, kids. It’s a great way to acculturate to a new workplace or just learn more about what’s happening in your library.

Now that we’ve text mined the results of our survey, it’s time to move onto building a Customer Relationship Management system (CRM) for keeping our collaborators and projects straight. Come back for Brave New Workplace: Your Homegrown CRM on December 21st.

Categories: Library News

Cross justice /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9780316407045
    Author: Patterson, James, 1947-

Categories: Library News

Tricky twenty-two : a Stephanie Plum novel /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9780345542984
    Author: Evanovich, Janet

Categories: Library News

The guilty /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9781455593927
    Author: Baldacci, David

Categories: Library News

The magic strings of Frankie Presto /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9780062294418
    Author: Albom, Mitch, 1958-

Categories: Library News

The bazaar of bad dreams : stories /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9781501111686
    Author: King, Stephen, 1947-

Categories: Library News

See me /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9781455520619
    Author: Sparks, Nicholas

Categories: Library News

Pretty girls : a novel /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9780062429056
    Author: Slaughter, Karin, 1971-

Categories: Library News

A spool of blue thread : a novel /

New At the Library - Wed, 2015-11-25 05:50

    ISBN: 9781101874288
    Author: Tyler, Anne

Categories: Library News

The University of Reading extends SirsiDynix platform to Malaysia campus

Library Technology Reports - Tue, 2015-11-24 17:48
(November 24, 2015). The University of Reading has signed a multiyear agreement to expand its license for Symphony to its Malaysia campus. From April to October, Library staff worked with SirsiDynix consultants to plan the project and configure the system. The Malaysia Campus went live in mid-October. The University of Reading has been a SirsiDynix customer since 1997, using products like the Enterprise discovery tool to help students find and use library materials. With this license expansion, the Malaysia campus will likewise use SirsiDynix Enterprise as its online catalog.
Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: November 24, 2015

LITA Blog - Tue, 2015-11-24 15:56

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week:

Tenure-track – STEM Librarian, Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, PA

Web Services Librarian, Meridian Library District, Meridian, ID

Information Technology & Virtual Services (ITVS) Officer, Pikes Peak Library District, Colorado Springs, CO

Systems & Discovery Services Librarian, Wabash College, Crawfordsville, IN

Systems Administrator, University of Wisconsin-Madison General Library System, Madison, WI

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

1440 Accelerator Session: Applicants' Deadline is November 30

Library Technology Reports - Tue, 2015-11-24 11:47
(November 24, 2015). Ingram Content Group is reminding prospective startups for the 1440 Winter Session 2016 that the deadline for applications is November 30, 2015. The accelerator program, 1440, is named for the year Johannes Gutenberg perfected his printing press technology.
Categories: Library News

Public libraries leverage Boopsie Mobile App to reach young community members

Library Technology Reports - Tue, 2015-11-24 11:47
(November 24, 2015). Boopsie, Inc., the leading mobile platform-as-a-service provider for libraries worldwide, today reported the impressive effect that integration of its Digital Comics and Graphic Novels subscription can have on circulation and usage of the resources that are popular with readers of all ages.
Categories: Library News

Gale launches first major online archive of pre-20th Century Arabic Books

Library Technology Reports - Mon, 2015-11-23 14:43
(November 23, 2015). Gale, a part of Cengage Learning, today announced the first module of Early Arabic Printed Books from the British Library, the first major text-searchable online archive of pre-20th century Arabic printed books. Module One, which includes a wealth of content on Islamic literature, law and other religious items, is part of Gale's ongoing Arabic digitization program offering the world's most important Arabic collections to researchers, instructors and students.
Categories: Library News

The pharaoh's secret : a novel from the Numa files /

New At the Library - Sat, 2015-11-21 11:31

    ISBN: 9780399174117
    Author: Cussler, Clive

Categories: Library News

All dressed in white : an under suspicion novel /

New At the Library - Sat, 2015-11-21 11:31

    ISBN: 9781501108556
    Author: Clark, Mary Higgins

Categories: Library News

The theory of death [sound recording] : a Decker/Lazarus novel /

New At the Library - Sat, 2015-11-21 11:31

    ISBN: 9780062420053
    Author: Kellerman, Faye

Categories: Library News

Depraved heart [sound recording] /

New At the Library - Sat, 2015-11-21 11:31

    ISBN: 9780062325433
    Author: Cornwell, Patricia Daniels

Categories: Library News

The Japanese lover : a novel /

New At the Library - Sat, 2015-11-21 11:31

    ISBN: 9781501117008
    Author: Allende, Isabel

Categories: Library News


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