Keeping track of our books: OpenBiblio to the rescue

July 6, 2009

We have a lot of books. I mean a lot of books. I want to know what books we have and if we have lent any of them to anybody.

We have a lot of videos. I mean a lot of videos. I want to know what videos we have and if we have lent any of them to anybody.

So, I can across a piece of software called OpenBiblio. OpenBiblio is “an easy to use, automated library system written in PHP containing OPAC, circulation, cataloging, and staff administration functionality.” It’s also really easy to set up. Even a technical neophyte such as myself can do it.

It does require a web server. Fortunately, that’s easy to take care of with a package like XAMPP, which makes installing a web server a breeze.

I’ll talk later about how I’m using OpenBiblio to keep track of our stuff. Right now, though, I just want to say thanks to people like Dave Stevens, who originally developed OpenBilblio (I think), Micah Stetson who is (I think) the current lead developer, and all of the others in the community who make OpenBiblio possible.


Testing trackbacks at The Patient Scholar

March 15, 2008

Testing trackbacks.

My Technorati claim

February 28, 2008

Technorati Profile

So, do trackbacks work at the Patient Scholar?

December 7, 2007

Trying to put up another blog. Why? asks the interested reader. Because I can. Well, there are other reasons, to lengthy to address since the purpose of this post is simply to see if the feedback plugin for blosxom really works. I’m doing a trackback to my post on Cygwin, Apache, and “unable to remap….”

Senator Clinton, planted question, and what we should expect of candidates

November 12, 2007

Senator Clinton’s campaign has been accused of planting at least one question at a rally in Iowa. See the story at the BBC’s web site at this address:

Senator Clinton states, as reported in the story, that “It was news to me and neither I nor my campaign approve of that, and it will certainly not be tolerated.” I am glad that she does not approve of question planting. The practice is dishonest. It does not give us an accurate view of the candidate in an extemporaneous situation. It’s only purpose is to provide another venue for the candidate’s rhetoric.

I wish that she had said one more thing about this incident. I wish that she had said that while she didn’t know about the plant, and while she didn’t approve of the plant, that she was responsible for the actions of her campaign and her campaign staff in trying to further her cause. I think she needed to say that. Perhaps it’s harsh to believe that the good senator should accept responsibility for something that a campaign worker did under personal initiative. Nevertheless, the candidate is responsible for setting the direction of the campaign and for establishing the values under which the campaign will operate. At least, that’s my view.

The candidate should be ensuring that the campaign knows, among other things, that fundamental principles of fairness, justice, and honesty are to be followed. The candidate needs to set the example and the campaign workers need to follow it. We need examples of strong character, of willingness to take responsibility. We need these examples not only in our presidents but also in our candidates.

Grateful for Emacs

August 31, 2007

Grateful for Emacs? Kind of an odd statement for a nongeek to make. But I am.

Emacs is free software. It’s free in two senses, in fact. First, and of most immediate importance to those of us on a tight budget, Emacs doesn’t cost money. Second, and more important, Emacs is free in the sense that it is unencumbered by a restrictive, proprietary license. It has a license, yes, but the license is designed to give rights to the end user rather than restrict them. A better explanation that I can give can be found at the article The Free Software Definition.

With Emacs, and other free software that I’ll talk about another time, I have been able to do some wonderful things, at least wonderful to me. Not the least of these is transcribing a 130-year-old journal of my great-great-grandfather, Benjamin Franklin Knowlton (ok, if you’re really interested, the PDF copy can be found at So, yes, I’m grateful for Emacs. 🙂

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Poets’ Corner

July 26, 2007

I found this quite delightful sight during my peregrination around the web this morning:

Poets’ Corner

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Things worth having

July 13, 2007

For anything worth having one must pay the price, and the price is always work, patience, love, self-sacrifice.

John Burroughs

March 5, 2007

I discovered while surfing a bit at the Internet Archive (a very cool place). The site maintainer, Tony Darnell, had put together and posted a video entitled “Hubble Deep Field: The Most Important Image Ever Taken”.

Portable Emacs on a USB drive

February 28, 2007

Ahhhh… [sigh of satisfaction]. I like Emacs; I really do. It’s arcane, difficult to master, the province of super geeks, one of the subjects of the *nix holy editor wars. I am not a master by any means; I have no lisp fu; I couldn’t write an expression to save my life.

But, I don’t have to because there are so many other super geeks out there. I have looked for a long time to be able to find a way to run Emacs from my USB drive, and found instructions in this article: Portable Emacs 22.0.50 on USB. Very cool!