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    November 21st, 2008LISWire aggregatorLISWire

    In times of yore, to trace the path of a meal from your table to the source may have only been a short jaunt out to some nearby woods. But in these days of modern transit, when the foods that people consume hail from various regions of the United States and even the globe, that path, many times, is much more complex.

    To help people understand how geographic information systems (GIS) can show information and to celebrate Geography Awareness Week, Linda Zellmer, the government and data services librarian at Western Illinois University Libraries, has utilized GIS to prepare a guide that shows where the foods consumed at the traditional Thanksgiving meal -- such as turkey, cranberries, squash and green beans -- originate.

    "GIS is a collection of computer software and data used to organize and view geographically referenced information -- it helps people collect and organize information about places, so that it can be easily displayed," Zellmer explained. "I used the data from the 1997 and 2002 Agricultural Censuses for this project. The data for the Census of Agriculture is collected every five years."

    Zellmer has compiled a website, available at, that links to PDF (portable document format) versions of the maps from 1997 and 2002. Some of the conventional Thanksgiving Day foods Zellmer compiled include green beans, carrots, cranberries, turkeys, pumpkins and sweet potatoes.

    "Several years ago, when was I working at Indiana University (IU), I was looking for an idea to explain how GIS can be used to show information. Knowing that Thanksgiving was the following week, I decided to develop maps showing where the foods we eat on Thanksgiving Day are grown," she said.

    In addition to the individual maps, Zellmer has modified a poster to display where Thanksgiving foods are produced in the U.S.

    "I have continued to update the maps since I made the first set, and I decided to recreate the maps and modify the poster, which was developed by a friend of mine from IU, and use them here at WIU," Zellmer said. "I am looking forward to next year, because the data from the 2007 Census of Agriculture will be available in February, so I will be able to develop a new set of maps and poster."

    Zellmer noted GIS provides government and other research agencies with a useful tool for planning and analyses.

    "GIS is an expanded service University Libraries provides to people who use data and maps. I have started to collect data so that people have a wider variety of GIS data available," she said. "The geography department here also uses GIS, as does the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs (IIRA), which is housed here at Western. For example, the IIRA has developed the Illinois Site Selection tool to help companies identify potential locations for businesses or industrial development," Zellmer added.

    Educators in elementary, middle and high schools may also find Zellmer's work particularly beneficial for pre-Thanksgiving Day lessons.

    "Teachers might be able to use the Thanksgiving maps to relate the food we eat to geography. They might also want to have the students examine the maps (and data) more closely to identify which states produce the most cranberries, turkeys and other foods. They might also want to dig a little deeper and look at weather, climate and growing conditions to try and determine why pecans only grow in southern states and cranberries only grow in a few states. It might be a good classroom activity when the students are eagerly looking forward to a long weekend," she said.

    Visit to access Zellmer's maps and the comprehensive poster online.

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    November 21st, 2008LISWire aggregatorLISWire

    The Informed Librarian Online ( is the information professional's current awareness service.

    Each month, we link you to the contents of 300+ valuable domestic and foreign library and information-related jourrnals, e-journals, magazines, e-magazines, newsletters, e-newsletter, and blogs.

    In addition, Premium Members get free access to 15+ premium content articles each month, from Emerald, ScienceDirect, Sage, Taylor and Francis, Haworth, and IOS Press. A highlight of our site is ILOSearch, a database of 87,000 documents that are fully indexed and searchable. ILOSearch enables you to search through all the journals we link to.

    All this and much more is accessible to our subscribers. Free memberships with limited access are also available. For more information go to

    Arlene L. Eis
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    140 Norma Road
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    Phone: 201-836-7072 Fax: 201-357-5575
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    November 21st, 2008LISWire aggregatorLISWire

    Invermere (B.C.) Public Library Goes Live with Evergreen

    Norcross, GA – November 20, 2008

    Invermere Public Library has become the 12th library in British Columbia’s SITKA consortium to go live with Evergreen, the consortial-quality open-source library automation software.

    Invermere Public Library’s migration to Evergreen is one more step in a process that will see up to 32 SITKA libraries running Evergreen by the end of 2009. Equinox Software Inc., the support and development company for Evergreen, is providing ongoing 24/7 technical support for SITKA’s Evergreen implementations.

    "While Evergreen works beautifully for single-site libraries, the true power of consortial-quality library software becomes apparent in settings such as SITKA,” said Brad LaJeunesse, Equinox company president. “With its powerful indexing, transaction, and other core functions, and user-friendly features such as self-placed holds and patron bookbags, Evergreen is a natural choice for resource-sharing systems, while the fact that Evergreen is open source translates to long-range security and confidence for Evergreen libraries and their systems.”

    SITKA is following a gradual approach to moving libraries over to Evergreen; libraries opt-in on their own schedule. Many libraries are anticipated to join over the next several years when their existing automation vendor contracts expire.

    Invermere, British Columbia is located near the border of Alberta. It has a growing population of about 4,000 people and serves as a popular summer destination for people from Calgary. Visit Invermere’s new online catalog at Their website can also be viewed at The collective holdings for all 12 libraries are at and a description of SITKA is at .

    About Evergreen

    Evergreen is consortial-quality, open-source library system software. Evergreen was initially developed to support Georgia PINES, a resource-sharing consortium with over 270 public libraries. While Evergreen was designed from the ground up to meet the needs of very large, high-transaction, multi-site consortia, its robust, fault-tolerant architecture elegantly scales down to the smallest sites. Evergreen is also adaptive software that due to its service-oriented, standards-compliant design can nimbly evolve to meet changing library needs and user expectations.

    From its debut in September 2006, Evergreen has consistently outperformed expectations and resulted in acclaim and praise from users worldwide. Evergreen has received significant attention, including a Technology Collaboration Award from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Other Evergreen implementations include Michigan Evergreen, through the Michigan Library Consortium; Evergreen Indiana, from the Indiana Open Source Initiative; and several smaller implementations, such as Kent County Public Library in Maryland, Marshall Public Library in Missouri, Innisfil Public Library in Ontario, and the University of Prince Edward Island. Evergreen projects in the early-development stages include Project Conifer (five academic libraries in Canada).

    For more information about Evergreen, visit

    About Equinox Software, Inc.

    Founded by the original Evergreen designers and developers, Equinox Software is a growing team of skilled developers and other professionals who provide comprehensive support for Evergreen, the consortial-quality, open source Integrated Library System (ILS). Equinox develops, supports, trains, migrates, integrates, and consults on Evergreen, and engages with the rapidly expanding Evergreen community. Instead of one-size-fits-all support, Equinox works closely with libraries to ensure Evergreen is implemented in the manner that best fits their individual needs.

    In addition to support, custom development and integration services, Equinox offers complete Evergreen hosting packages for libraries wishing to outsource their ILS infrastructure. Equinox also provides consulting services for libraries seeking more insight into the value proposition of open source software.

    Press contact: Corinne Hall,, 678-269-6113

    For more information on Equinox Software, please visit

    Evergreen is open source software, freely licensed under the GNU GPL. Evergreen and the Evergreen Logo are registered trademarks of the Georgia Public Library Service.