Learn about AI with Temple Libraries

It seems like every day we are bombarded with dozens of news stories about Artificial Intelligence (AI), with coverage ranging from self-driving cars, to fashion models, to cryptocurrency. With so much information out there, what do we really need to know about AI, and how might it benefit us as students, educators, creators, and researchers? Staff at Temple Libraries have designed a series of AI workshops to help answer these questions and create space for productive dialogue about how AI impacts our daily personal and professional lives. Learn more and register using the links below.

Working with AI Chatbots

Fri, September 22, 11am Online via Zoom

Register: https://library.temple.edu/events/1525

Curious about how chatbots and other AI tools can support you in your studies and your work? Wondering what chatbots do well and what they don’t do well? Join us for an overview of the promise and pitfalls of AI chatbots. This technology is evolving quickly and has the potential to fundamentally alter our relationship to information. We’ll explore how some of the current tools can expedite and assist your work and where a critical eye is needed. We’ll offer suggestions for optimizing your chatbot interactions through prompt engineering.

AI Tools for Research

Tue, October 3, 2pm Online via Zoom

Register: https://library.temple.edu/events/1530

Wondering how AI- and machine learning-powered tools can help you in the research process? Join us for a discussion and demonstration of several AI-enabled research tools that have the potential to support your scholarly research. More and more tools are becoming available that aim to help you with tasks such as finding scholarly literature on a topic, designing search strategies and query syntax, summarizing text, chasing citations, transcribing and working with data, and more.

AI Generated Music and Images

Mon, October 9, 1pm Online via Zoom

Register: https://library.temple.edu/events/1532

Artificial intelligence music and image generators can produce amazing results. These tools work by processing a large amount of pre-existing visual and auditory data. But does doing so raise any ethical or legal concerns? And what impact might these tools have on current artists? Join us for a thought-provoking exploration of some of the implications of these technologies.

Artificial Intelligence: Applications and Innovations in Healthcare

Thu October 12, noon Online via Zoom

Register: https://library.temple.edu/events/1533

This workshop will explore the past, present and future of artificial intelligence, and adjacent technologies like machine learning, in healthcare. Although adoption of the tech is far from worldwide, artificial intelligence (AI) is already in use in several areas of healthcare like recordkeeping, mental health screenings and even surgical procedures. In this workshop, we will see how AI could effectively shape and inform the landscape of healthcare and healthcare education. With the recent rise of chatbots drawing the public’s attention towards the technology, as well as the constant evolution and uncertainty surrounding the tech, the future and role of AI in healthcare is as unclear as it is exciting.

AI in Business

Wed, October 18, 2pm Online via Zoom

Register: https://library.temple.edu/events/1536

This workshop focuses on the implications of generative AI for business research and practice. The session will explore the use of AI chatbots and how they compare to traditional business research tools. We’ll also cover the ways chatbots and other forms of generative AI are changing the work of business practitioners. The workshop will also look at the role of prompt engineering to optimize the use of AI tools. We’ll also touch on the ethical considerations of using generative AI technology.

Reading for Social Change: #1Thing We Can Do For A Safer Tomorrow

Guest post by Liz Zadnik, associate director of the Wellness Resource Center

* Take Care While Reading: Mention of intimate partner abuse *

October is recognized nationally as Domestic Violence Awareness Month—a time to honor individuals and families who have experienced abuse, as well as for communities to join together in efforts to create positive change. The 2020 theme is #1Thing, as in one action we can each take to move us toward a world free of interpersonal violence. Today’s post is a collaboration between the Wellness Resource Center and Temple University Libraries.

Image of woman running in front text reading #1Thing, Awareness + Action = Social Change

While millions of Americans experience some form of intimate partner violence during their lifetime, it is often something they endure alone. Making something visible—speaking these truths—can minimize the shame and isolation so many may experience. One way we can start this collective conversation is by reading the accounts of folks brave and generous enough to share their lives with us.

How does reading help us in our collective efforts to create a safer world? 

Emerging research has found reading literary fiction can help readers with empathy and compassion. The skills of empathy—perspective-taking, staying out of judgement, identifying emotions, and then communicating recognition of those emotions—are strengthened as we bear witness to the perceptions, thought processes, and worldviews of characters.

Here are some suggested titles, all available through Temple Libraries:

In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado

Machado’s memoir of her experience with an abusive partner weaves together themes of sizeism, heterosexism, and cultural understandings of love and worthiness. Incredibly candid, Machado approaches a difficult subject with wit and a combination of narrative tropes—including classic horror—to create something entirely unique.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

A classic text that won the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award for Fiction, The Color Purple shares the stories of women connected through their pain, growth, and bravery. The powerful novel offers a journey that is inspiring and life-affirming.

Milk and Honey and The Sun And Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur 

Kaur’s poetry seeks to raise awareness of domestic and family violence and how social norms contribute to victim-blaming, shame, and pain. Unflinching and honest, each offering evokes a range of emotions and asks the reader to open their heart to something new. 

Resources Available

Temple’s Tuttleman Counseling Services has specially-trained therapists and support groups for Temple University students who have experienced different forms of interpersonal violence.  

Philadelphia’s Domestic Violence Hotline connects folks with multiple organizations in the area for crisis intervention, safety planning, resources, and referrals. All conversations are free, confidential and anonymous: 1-866-723-3014

The National Domestic Violence Hotline offers support to anyone in the United States and also has a chat feature available any time, 24-hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-799-7233.


Future Proofing Civic Data

Exploring the challenges of preserving open civic data for the long term

This past year, Temple University Libraries received a Knight Foundation Grant, “Knight News Challenge on Libraries,” to lead an exploratory research project, Future Proofing Civic Data, investigating the challenges of long-term preservation for open civic datasets.

Open civic data portals, such as OpenDataPhilly in Philadelphia, have been a growing trend in cities, states, and national governments over the last decade. Many governments and other civic partners began developing open civic data initiatives in order to make data originating from governmental agencies and civic organizations easily accessible online for immediate consultation, as well as for data reuse. Datasets can include anything from election results to operating budgets to an inventory of all the trees in a city. The hope is that these portals can help bridge the gap between citizens and government and stimulate civic engagement by making data of relevance to citizens easily accessible online.

However, portals do not always have fully formed or fully implemented plans to ensure the long-term preservation of those datasets, and best practices are yet to emerge in that domain.

The Temple Library project team interviewed over a dozen stakeholders about their use cases and needs and looked at several open civic data initiatives in Philadelphia, Boston, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh, to compare practices and examine real-life examples. We wrote up our findings in a white paper where we explore ten important factors that need to be taken into consideration, if we are to tackle long-term preservation of civic data successfully. We also look at how libraries could take the lead, or at least participate in the process.

Please see the full white paper for more details.

The project team was comprised of Joe Lucia (PI), Rachel Appel, Delphine Khanna, Chad Nelson, Margery Sly, and Gretchen Sneff.

Campaign 2012! All the Info You Need to Vote is Right Here!

A red, white and blue button with stars that says "vote". We created Voter Information –2012 Election Guide to give voters at Temple quality information on the upcoming presidential election. If you are a first-time voter, you can find information in the guide about polling locations and voter registration. To stay informed on daily campaign developments, to read public statements made by candidates, and to see what is being said about candidates, you can read the RSS feeds from fact checkers, reporters, polls, and bloggers. If you are curious about the history and political theory behind presidential elections the United States, you can find information about these subjects on the guide and through links to other research guides. Checking this guide regularly will keep you informed before you head to the polls in November.

Foundations Department at Tyler and Libraries Once Again Partner for Book Giveaway, Artists and Authors Talk

Third Annual Tyler School of Art Foundations/Paley Library Book Give Away and Artists and Authors Lecture Stop by the Paley Library Circulation Desk during the week of April 16 and receive your own copy* of Ellen Harvey’s New York Beautification Project. Between 1999 and 2001, Harvey executed small old-fashioned landscapes in oil on graffiti sites across New York City. New York Beautification Project documents the works and Harvey’s diaristic accounts of painting illegally throughout New York. The narrative of her “beautification project” is both provocative and hilarious, touching on such issues as who is allowed to make art in our society, and what distinguishes art from graffiti, while never losing touch with the frequently comical reality of creating a contemporary art project on the streets of New York.

Don’t miss Harvey’s lecture, Monday, April 16 at 11:00 in Tyler Room B004.

*The fine print:

  • From Monday, April 16 through Friday, April 20, copies of New York Beautification Project will be given away to the first 20 patrons to request a book and show their Temple ID to Library Circulation Staff. Any member of the Temple community can receive a book. Each day the giveaway will begin at a different time to accommodate the variety of schedules of our faculty, staff and students.
  • Monday, April 16, 9:00 AM, Get your copy of Ellen’s book right before she speaks!
  • Tuesday, April 17, 11:00 AM
  • Wednesday, April 18, 1:00 PM
  • Thursday, April 19, 3:00 PM
  • Friday, April 20, NOON

This annual program is sponsored by the Foundations Department, Tyler School of Art and Temple University Libraries.

It is made possible through the use of General Activity Fees.

Portrait of Ellen Harvey standing before paintings on a wall.

[image of Ellen Harvey]

Access to licensed Library subscription resources

The Temple University Libraries purchase at significant annual cost exceeding $5 million a wide array of subscription materials including databases, certain software programs, and online electronic journals and books. We negotiate these annual costs in order to minimize the expense to Temple University. In most cases the costs for these licenses have been based on Temple’s full-time equivalent enrollment although some are based on the number of simultaneous users allowed.

While we would very much like to offer alumni access from home or work to our subscription databases, online journals and ebooks, it is economically infeasible. When we negotiate and pay for licenses based on Temples 34,000 FTE enrollment, we are then contractually obligated to ensure that only current Temple students, faculty, and staff have access to the resource. If we were to allow the 200,000+ Temple alumni access to our licensed resources, library costs would increase an estimated five-fold.

We therefore regularly review with Computing Services staff the protocols such as the Temple Portal by which we together ensure that only current students, faculty and staff are able to access these restricted licensed resources and that alumni and others are excluded. On Tuesday April 10 such a review resulted in resetting access in order to properly exclude from off-campus access alumni with Temple email accounts. A handful of Temple alumni who had earlier been able to get into some of our restricted resources will as a result now encounter turnaways in keeping with our license restrictions.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. As always, alumni and other guests are welcome to come to campus and access these resources from within the library where we are allowed by contract to offer on-site access to these resources. As of April 11, we are making provisions for Temple alumni currently enrolled as students in the Senior Scholars program to continue to have access as current students.

Jonathan LeBreton
Senior Associate University Librarian

Talk Radio Host Rob Redding

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iTunes U link (for downloads)

Subscribe to this podcast series

Rob Redding is the talk show host of the Redding News Review, a syndicated radio program heard Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on the Genesis Communications Network (GCN). On Sundays his program airs between 7 and 10 p.m. on GCN, SiriusXM Satellite Radio Channel 128, and other affiliate radio stations. He also maintains the Redding News Review news web site. He has appeared on Fox News, NPR, and CSpan.

On February 1, he visited Temple University to discuss the presidential elections and his new book Where’s the Change?: Why Neither Obama, nor the GOP Can Solve America’s Problems. Before he spoke in Anderson Hall, he stopped by Paley Library for an interview.

—Fred Rowland


Out of Left Field: The Interview

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Audio Download Link (for later)

Professor Rebecca Alpert has had a longstanding interest in baseball since she began following the Brooklyn Dodgers in her youth. As a professor of religion, she has written on topics of modern Judaism and Jewish studies, and on the role of gender and sexuality in religion. When she learned of prominent Jewish booking agents in the Negro Leagues of the 1930s and 1940s, she was able to combine her interests in Jewish studies and baseball. The result is her new book Out of Left Field: Jews and Black Baseball, published in 2011 by Oxford University Press. On February 15, I had the privilege of interviewing Professor Alpert on her new book.

—Fred Rowland