Category Archives: Research Resources

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National Library of India

The National Library of India (Bengali: ভারতের জাতীয় গ্রন্থাগার) at Belvedere, Kolkata, is the largest library in India by volume and India’s library ofpublic record. It is under the Department of Culture, Ministry of Tourism & Culture, Government of India. The library is designated to collect, disseminate and preserve the printed material produced in India. The library is situated on the scenic 30 acre (120,000 m²) Belvedere Estate, in Kolkata (formerly Calcutta). The Library is the largest in India, with a collection in excess of 2.2 million books. It is India’s only Category 6 library and is one of the four depository libraries in the country where publishers are required, under The Delivery of Books And Newspapers (Public Libraries) Act, 1954, “to supply books published in India, by Indians abroad or any title that might be of interest to Indians”. It is also India’s sole repository library where all books, publications and official documents in its custody have to be stored in perpetuity.

knowledge organization (KO)

The term knowledge organization (KO) (or “organization of knowledge”, “organization of information” or “information organization”) designates a field of study related to Library and Information Science (LIS). In this meaning, KO is about activities such as document description, indexing and classification performed in libraries, databases, archives etc. These activities are done by librarians, archivists, subject specialists as well as by computer algorithms. KO as a field of study is concerned with the nature and quality of such knowledge organizing processes (KOP) as well as the knowledge organizing systems (KOS) used to organize documents, document representations and concepts.

Archives

An archives is an accumulation of historical records, or the physical place they are located. Archives contain primary source documents that have accumulated over the course of an individual or organization’s lifetime, and are kept to show the function of that person or organization. Professional archivists and historians generally understand archives to be records that have been naturally and necessarily generated as a product of regular legal, commercial, administrative or social activities. They have been metaphorically defined as “the secretions of an organism”, and are distinguished from documents that have been consciously written or created to communicate a particular message to posterity.

What are Reference Sources?

Normally all the school libraries have the following reference sources to satisfy the needs of the users.  Some of the reference sources are not familiar among the readers.  To make them understand the uses and purpose of those sources, a brief description is given for information.

General sources of information are:

1. Dictionaries

2. Encyclopaedia

3. Yearbooks, Almanacs, handbooks,etc.

4. Biographical sources eg. Who’s Who

5. Geographical sources eg. Gazatteers, Atlases, Guidebooks, maps, etc.

6. Directories- list of persons or organizations systmatically arranged usually in alphabetical order, giving addresses affiliations, etc. for individuals and addresses, officers, functions and similar data for organizations.

Since most of these sources are familiar among readers, sources like almanacs are unfamiliar and needs little explanation.

Grey literature

Grey literature is informally published written material (such as reports) that may be difficult to trace via conventional channels such as published journals and monographs because it is not published commercially or is not widely accessible. It may nonetheless be an important source of information for researchers, because it tends to be original and recent. Examples of grey literature include patents, technical reports from government agencies or scientific research groups, working papers from research groups or committees,white papers, and preprints. The term “grey literature” is used in library and information science.

The identification and acquisition of grey literature poses difficulties for librarians and other information professionals for several reasons. Generally, grey literature lacks strict bibliographic control, meaning that basic information such as author, publication date or publishing body may not be easily discerned. Similarly, the nonprofessional layouts and formats, low print runs, and non-conventional channels of distribution of grey literature make the organized collection of such publications challenging compared to journals and books. In 1995, D.B. Simpson observed that “peripheral materials, including grey literature, expand unabated. Libraries having difficulty collecting traditional materials have little hope of acquiring the periphery”.

Information and research professionals generally draw a distinction between ephemera and grey literature. However, there are certain overlaps between the two media and they undoubtedly share common frustrations such as bibliographic control issues. Unique written documents such as manuscripts and archives, and personal communications, are not usually considered as falling under the heading of grey literature, although they again share some of the same problems of control and access. Although grey literature is often discussed with reference to scientific research, it is by no means restricted to a single field: outside the hard sciences, it presents significant problems in, for example, archaeology, in which site surveys and excavation reports, containing unique data, have frequently been produced and circulated in informal “grey” formats.