Resource for Finding Literature About Economics

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EconBiz is a research site about Economics topics that touts itself as being a thorough resource for both students and researchers in this area. Their About page is detailed about all they have to offer, so be sure to check it out:

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Toward the bottom of this page is a link to this article about why the author feels Google Scholar needs to be augmented with other modes of research.

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The article does not disparage Google Scholar, it merely points out some of the weak points of the offering and suggests resources to augment the use of Google Scholar. It’s definitely worth the time to check it out. There is even a chart on the last page of the article displaying some of the strengths of EconBiz’s search results vs. Google’s:

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We would do well to push this resource to people desiring more comprehensive and scholarly level material on Economics.

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Industrial Code Tool

A patron recently approached the desk to ask for listings of businesses in Mexico that distributed plus sized women’s clothing. I knew that I could help point him in the right direction with NAICS and SIC code information. One tool I found online was siccode.com.

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The site is a bit ad-heavy and some information is for sale, but there are some helpful free portions as well. For example, we discovered the SIC code he sought was 5137. So we searched that and found this:

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So this information can be helpful. Further, once I clicked the green tab on the right marked “Industry Description” it took me to this more detailed description of this particular industry:
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When I scrolled down further I found specific market information, and listings of related 6, 7 and 8 digit SIC codes for similar industries:

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Finally, when I clicked “Market Analysis—Sample Companies” for the company La Blanca here is what came up:

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In the final analysis, this site is limited by the amount of ads and the for profit nature of it, but it could be useful to a point. At any rate it is good to know the tool, even with its limitations.

An Effort to Increase the Hiring of Youth in Memphis

HireMemphis.org is “…an initiative sponsored by Mayor Strickland to increase youth employment in Memphis.”

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This initiative offers free posting for Memphis businesses, asking that they specifically target 16-24 year olds with their jobs and internships. It works much like any other job board: job seekers may create an account, sign up for alerts and apply for jobs and/or internships.

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There is also a jobs map:

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A Tools section, with advice on resume building, creating an elevator pitch and links to City resources:

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And even a list of the employers that have posted jobs and internships:

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Let’s do what we can to promote this potentially valuable resource to young people in our department.

Fresh Air Archived on Worldcat.org

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Since 1975 the NPR show Fresh Air has been aired. Since that time it has been one of the most popular radio shows in America. It is an important cultural touchstone for much of America, and access to past episodes is seen as important by many, and many subjects relevant to our department are covered in great and interesting detail over the 40 + years of the show. You may read a blurb about the show from NPR here: Fresh Air.

One may read a detailed white paper about open access to past episodes here: Opening Access to Fresh Air’s Archives. Or, one may simply open up worldcat.org and search Fresh Air. On page 9 of the above mentioned article we find the following information:

At the time of writing this article, we have approximately 1,800 records available on WorldCat. For each record, the following Dublin core fields—title, creator, contributor, date, type, rights, language, and description—are displayed on the WorldCat interface along with the streaming MP3 version of the interview.”

The search is a bit clunky, because you have to dig a bit to find what you’re looking for, so your best bet is to know a date of a show you’re looking for, or a particular interviewee.

Once you get to the desired interview it is very easy to simply click on it and listen to an MP3 of the interview.

terry-gross

 

Dissecting an Animal–Without the Animal

It seems dissecting various animals is a rite of passage for public school kids going through science class. Some don’t mind at all–it is a nice diversion from sitting in class listening to a lecture. There are issues though, ranging from those who don’t want an animal killed for science to those who simply don’t have access to the actual animal.

That’s where the Science Bank comes in. They have a page that links to several other sites where one may see a virtual dissection of many different types of animals, from the typical, like pigs or rats, to the unusual, such as a starfish, grasshopper or even a cow eyeball or a sheep brain.

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One has to be careful, because some sites charge a fee, but to avoid this, just don’t click on a link with an asterisk.

Here is one free site for earthworm dissection that has many features:

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Here is another free site for grasshoppers that allows you to choose which systems are visible or not, and whether or not the systems are labeled.

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This site is a treasure trove for anyone interested in the biology of several different types of animals.

The Deaf Resource Library

The Deaf Resource Library is described by the author as “…a virtual library — an online collection of reference material and links intended to educate and inform people about Deaf cultures in Japan and the United States; as well as deaf and hard of hearing related topics.”

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The site is a labor of love by Karen Nakamura who is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and East Asian Studies at Yale University, so it is not a slick, professional site, but don’t be fooled–there is much information to mine on this site.

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There are many links she provides for national organizations:

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Resources for families:

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Links to deaf business resources:

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Essentially, she has made her blog a great landing site for many different resources for the deaf community and allies/family.

Another Option for Product Evaluations

We frequently assist patrons with access to our Consumer Reports issues at the PSD for questions concerning various products and services. Tom’s Guide is another option for similar reviews for tech products in particular.

On the homepage you can get a list of reviewed products in this manner:

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…or you may use the “Product Reviews” dropdown to get this fuller view:

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From that view you can see Tom’s also offers links to Tech deals,

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a Forum in which users may post questions and have them answered, either by Tom’s experts or other Forum users.

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In my opinion the feature that may be of most use for our patrons is the “How To” section:

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As you can see, there are many topics relevant to using apps, devices, programs and more:

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There is also a section where one may download software and other items:

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Tom’s Guide is a good resource for our patrons seeking various types of information on tech products, from buying, to learning how to use them and even having specific questions answered about them.