Pharmaceutical Substances on trial until 31st May 2019

We have trial access until 31st May 2019 to Pharmaceutical Substances from Thieme.

Pharmaceutical Substances is a one-stop source of information relating to the industrial synthesis and commercial applications of every licensed drug of significance. It provides ready access to syntheses, patents, and applications for more than 2,600 active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), including intermediates from the six most important markets.

Professors Axel Kleemann, Jürgen Engel, Bernhard Kutscher, and Dr. Dietmar Reichert present highly evaluated information collected from all the relevant literature and commercial patent data.

Pharmaceutical Substances is aimed at:

  • Researchers and process chemists
  • Teaching in the field of medicinal and pharmaceutical chemistry
  • Everyone involved in design, discovery, development, evaluation, and marketing of drugs

Please explore and if this resource would support your education or research activities then contact your Liaison Librarian with details.

New resource now available: Kanopy film streaming

We’re pleased to announce that following a successful trial, we now have access to the Kanopy on-demand film-streaming platform.

Kanopy provides access to over 30,000 films, including contemporary and classic feature films from around the world, and documentaries across a range of topics in arts, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. New films are added each month, and you can watch them on your preferred device.

Kanopy is very easy to use: simply search for a film by title, or browse by category. All the films are also individually catalogued on Library Search too, so you can find and access them that way as well.

You’ll find lots of useful features, including creating clips and playlists, viewing the transcript, and rating or adding comments.

Please note, as Kanopy is a ‘pay as you go’ service, we will assess demand during an initial pilot phase. If you’ve got any feedback about Kanopy, we’d be interested to receive it: just drop us an email or post it as a comment on this blog.

Spotlight on …. UbuWeb

Have you tried using UbuWeb yet?  You’ll be surprised at the amount of ‘stuff’ in there!

First of all, what is UbuWeb?  UbuWeb is a completely independent resource dedicated to all strains of the avant-garde, ethnopoetics, and outsider arts. It hosts a wide range of texts and audio-visual materials.  A few examples include:

Conceptual Writing:            

“Poetry expresses the emotional truth of the self. A craft honed by especially sensitive individuals, it puts metaphor and image in the service of song.” Read how Craig Douglas Dworkin continues his explanation of ‘The UbuWeb Anthology of Conceptual Writing’ and have a look at examples such as John Baldessari’s text “I will not make any more boring art”

Outsiders:  

Here’s how the editors describe this section: “Formerly known as UbuWeb’s Found + Insane section, we’ve redesigned and renamed it Outsiders, reflecting broader cultural trends toward the legitimization of Outsider work, be it in the visual, musical, or literary arts. Beginning with the mainstreaming of Folk Art (now known as Outsider Art) and the work of Jean Dubuffet in the mid-twentieth century, and moving into the present with the recent well-received museum retrospectives of visionary art of the insane (Adolf Wolfli and Henry Darger), there appears to be an insatiable hunger for this raw and emotionally-charged work”

UbuWeb Contemporary:  

Read about the works presented by over 100 (to date) contemporary practitioners including one of our own Fine Art graduates, http://www.ubu.com/contemp/copeland/index.html  who’s also listed among UbuWeb’s Top Ten!

Podcasts:   

Produced by the Poetry Foundation, listen to podcasts of, for example: interviews with artists; the sound of Fluxus; women of the Avante-garde; the malady of writing, to name but a few.

Why not give UbuWeb a try – you’ll be surprised at how much ‘stuff’ there is!

(You can get to UbuWeb from the Fine Art Subject Guide http://www.ubu.com/).

Learning and Teaching Conference: Library activities

You’ll find links to the relevant Library resources below.

As time is limited, your handout gives you suggestions as to which sections you may find it useful to explore, and what sort of feedback we’d welcome, but please feel free to explore as you wish!

A. Academic skills resources

B. Research skills resources

Aimed at UGs/PGTs: please explore our dissertations/projects guide.

Aimed at PGRs: please explore the new online format for our HSS8002 information and library skills module. We’ve created a dummy version of HSS8002 for today’s workshop. You should be able to access the dummy course directly via this link. If not, log in to Blackboard, click Courses, and then type HSS8002 in the search box. Now click on the link to HSS8002conference.

You can also read our LTDS case study about this project.

C. Reading lists online

D. Employability guide

 

 

The Camera Never Lies? Fakes and Photoshop

Fake news story of a new species of bird. Picture shows a photoshopped tiger headed bird.

I am sure you spotted that the photograph above is a photoshopped fake, but according to a recent study at Warwick University, about a third of manipulated images go undetected by viewers.

Physical manipulation of images has been around since the invention of photography itself.  Take a look at this example from the early 20th Century; it looks convincing but the Library of Congress were able to work out that this is actually a composite of several images and does not really show General Ulysses S. Grant at City Point:

Modern digital technology has brought with it a plethora of photograph and video editing apps that are easily accessible and simple to use – at the touch of a button we are now able to crop, edit and filter the photographs we take.  While fun to use for entertainment and valuable for people such as designers and artists, tools such as these can be more problematic when they are used with the intention to deceive or manipulate.

For example, in March 2018 a photograph from Teen Vogue of Emma González, an American anti-gun activist, was photoshopped to show her tearing up the US Constitution with the presumed aim of promoting her views as unpatriotic:

Out of Context

Manipulated images are not the only problem.  Purposefully using a picture out of context can also mislead the intended audience.

In April 1934 a number of American newspapers, including the highly respected New York Times, published a photograph showing a man using a flying machine that worked using his lung power alone.  The incredible image depicts a man in mid-air wearing a device consisting of a box and two rotors while four other men run along below him.  Unfortunately, the newspapers had failed to check the original source of the image and fell afoul of a German magazine’s April fool’s joke.

While publishing a fake flying machine might be a fairly harmless, if embarrassing, mistake some images taken out of context like this can have more powerful consequences.

In July 2018 Time magazine used the cropped image of a young girl crying juxtaposed against a stern looking President Trump on their front page; the child was said to have been separated from her parents as part of Trump’s zero tolerance policy toward those crossing the border illegally from Mexico.    The original photograph, taken by Getty photographer John Moore, went viral, sparking a public outrage that led to the government ending the practice.  However, it was discovered that, on this occasion, the child had not been separated from her parents but was detained with her mother.

Both of these examples, highlight the importance of checking the source and confirming the context of an image before taking it at face value.

This can be true of videos too, take this example purporting to show U.S. President Donald Trump removing his hat and revealing that he’s bald:

You can see toward the end of the video, a slight glitch where the President’s hand seems to go through the top of his head, showing it to be an obvious fake but even if this wasn’t clear, the origin of the video would provide another hint that it’s not to be trusted – the video was created by Paul Lee Ticks, a Twitter user who frequently posts memes and digitally manipulated videos.

While some images and videos are obviously fake others can be more convincing and improvements in technology, particularly artificial intelligence, are making the fakes even more difficult to detect.  These more convincing images and videos are known as deepfakes and with the ability to make people appear to say things that they did not, they have the potential to cause serious damage.

Take a look at this TED talk by computer scientist Supasorn Suwajanakorn, who explains his work with AI and discusses both the creative and more negative ethical implications of the technology:

Spotting the Fakes 

With the creation of fake images and videos proliferating in journalism, politics and social media, it’s increasingly important to be vigilant.  While experts are developing tools to help fight against the more serious attempts at disinformation, we have some simple tricks you can use to help improve your fake image savvy too:

Top Three Ways to Spot a Fake

  1. Look for inconsistencies

Check the image for distorted backgrounds, missing or altered reflections and shadows, and missing features that you would expect to see.  Keep an eye out for any obviously repeated patterns and be wary of lower quality or blurred images.

  1. Try a reverse image search

Use a reverse image search on Google to track the image, see if it has been circulated before, locate the original source or maybe even find if the story around the image has already been debunked.

  1. Check the metadata

Sometimes it is possible to look at an image’s metadata, that is, data about the image such as what time and date it was taken, which camera was used and if it has been saved in Photoshop.  This is called the EXIF data.  There are various websites and apps where you can upload an image to check it’s metadata but it’s simple to find out some key information using Windows too: right click on an image, go to properties then details.  Unfortunately, not all images will have metadata as some popular sites such as Facebook and Twitter will remove it to protect user privacy.

Now you’re armed with these top tips why not take a look at the test the University of Warwick used in the study mentioned at the beginning of the blog.  How many fakes can you spot?

Sources:

Boese, A. (no date) Man Flies By Own Lung Power. Available at:  http://hoaxes.org/af_database/permalink/man_flies_by_own_lung_power (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Brightside (no date) 10 Tips to Spot a Fake Image and Not Let Photoshoppers Fool You. Available at: https://brightside.me/wonder-curiosities/10-tips-to-spot-a-fake-image-and-not-let-photoshoppers-fool-you-469660/ (Accessed 22 March 2019)

Evon, D. (2019) ‘Is This a Video of President Trump Without His Toupee?’, Snopes, 12 March.  Available at: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/trump-toupee-video-fake/ (Accessed 22 March 2019)

Farid, H. (2019)’Don’t be fooled by fake images and videos online’, The Conversation, 20 February.  Available at: https://theconversation.com/dont-be-fooled-by-fake-images-and-videos-online-111873 (Accessed 25 March 2019)

Kirby, J. (2018 ) ‘Time’s crying girl photo controversy, explained’, Vox, 22 June. Available at: https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/22/17494688/time-magazine-cover-crying-girl-photo-controversy-family-separation (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Library of Congress (2008) Civil War Glass Negatives and Related Prints.  Available at: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/cwp/mystery.html (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Mikkelson, D (2018) ‘Was Emma González Filmed Ripping Up the U.S. Constitution?’, Snopes, 25 March.  Available at: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/emma-gonzalez-ripping-up-constitution/ (Accessed 22 March 2019)

O’Sullivan, D. (2019) ‘When seeing is no longer believing: Inside the Pentagon’s race against deepfake videos’, CNN Business, no date. Available at: https://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2019/01/business/pentagons-race-against-deepfakes/ (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Smith, B. (2018) ‘Fake news, hoax images: How to spot a digitally altered photo from the real deal’, ABC News, 24 July.  Available at:  https://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-02-11/fake-news-hoax-images-digitally-altered-photos-photoshop/9405776 (Accessed: 25 March 2019)

TED (2018) Fake videos of real people — and how to spot them | Supasorn Suwajanakorn. Available at: https://youtu.be/o2DDU4g0PRo (Accessed 28 March 2019)

University of Warwick (2017) One third of fake images go undetected in recent study [Press release] 18 July. Available at:  https://warwick.ac.uk/newsandevents/pressreleases/one_third_of/ (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Vick, K. (2018) ‘A Reckoning After Trump’s Border Separation Policy: What Kind of Country Are We?’ The Times, 21 June. Available at:  http://time.com/5318229/donald-trump-border-separation-policy/ (Accessed: 22 March 2019)

Bubbles and echos: are you surrounding yourself with fake news?

Librarians have been warning people about ‘Fake News’ for many, many, many, many years – how to find and select reliable, authoritative, quality resources is at the heart of any good library teaching session.  In a way we librarians have to thank Mr Trump for making Fake News a popular term; he has made everyone aware that there are fake stories out there and that there has been for centuries (see our historical time-line of Fake News).

2019 is NU Library’s third year of promoting awareness of Fake News, and by looking at the large number of visits to our Fake News Guide over these three years (4,672 visits in total), and again thanks to Mr Trump, it’s not something that’s going away anytime soon.  So we Librarians will continue our quest of highlighting all information that is fake for the greater good.

Until I went to Librarian’s Fake News conference last year, I hadn’t heard of the terms ‘Filter Bubble’ and ‘Echo Chambers’ in relation to Fake News.  However, once explained hopefully it will make you more aware of what information/news stories you read via the likes of Google, Facebook and Twitter, and how they could potentially be fake.  So here is the low-down on what these terms mean and how you can avoid falling into their traps; we’ve also offered the alternative view that they’re a load of old nonsense so you can decide for yourselves…

What is a ‘Filter Bubble’?

A Filter Bubble is when you are in a virtual bubble on social media – you only encounter information and opinions that agree with or reinforce your own beliefs.  Your ‘personalised’ online experience is the result of algorithms that work away in the background and dictate what you see/read online. Google, Facebook, Pinterest, Netflix, YouTube and many more all do this.

These Filter Bubbles in turn create Echo Chambers…

What are ‘Echo Chambers’?

When information within a closed system online is only giving you (‘echoing’) back your opinion and beliefs and establishing confirmation bias (only accepting information that confirm your own opinion and beliefs).

What are the dangers?

As much as I enjoy Facebook fuelling my love of funny dog videos by suggesting similar videos and articles, being aware of why and how Facebook is doing this helps when it comes to more serious topics such as the news, social issues and politics.

Regarding Fake News, confirmation bias is particularly worrying as you will start believing fake news stories that confirms your opinions and beliefs. I know I have done this, which is really scary to realise.

Watch this short TedTalks video from Eli Pariser on the dangers of Filter Bubbles:

You could argue that this type of ‘personalisation’ is editing the web – only showing you one half of the story.  So what can you do to pop the bubble?

What can you do to stop the bubbles and echoes?

There are a few simple things you can do to stop this and open yourselves up to a wider web:

  • Read news sites, websites and blogs that offer a wide range of perspectives, such as the BBC.
  • Use Incognito browsing, delete search histories and try and resist the temptation of logging into your accounts every time you go online.
  • Deleting or blocking browser cookies – these cookies hold the algorithms that determine what we see.
  • Turn off your curated feed in Facebook.
  • Click ‘Like’ on everything! – This will tell the AI that you are into everything – all politics, all news etc.
  • Don’t clink on links, especially politics and social issues – will stop fuelling the algorithms.
  • Tell everyone else to turn off their curated feed!

Is it all a myth?

Below are a few articles that claim Filter Bubbles and Echo Chambers are myths and that it’s not the technology at fault, but rather the user. I’ll let you decide:

Dubois, E. and Blank, G. (2018) The myth of the echo chamber. Available at: https://theconversation.com/the-myth-of-the-echo-chamber-92544. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Robson, D. (2018) The myth of the online echo chamber. Available at: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20180416-the-myth-of-the-online-echo-chamber. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Schwab, P. (2017) Academic research debunks the myth of filter bubbles. Available at: https://www.intotheminds.com/blog/en/academic-research-debunks-the-myth-of-filter-bubbles/. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Don’t burst my bubble!

Or maybe you like being in your own little bubble? The safety and comfort in knowing what information you are going to be presented with – nothing that offends or upsets your online world. I know I will carry on being fed humorous dog videos.

There are some interesting thoughts and opinions on the Social Network Bubble – the pros and cons – on this Radio 4 programme:

BBC Radio 4 (2017) Bursting the social network bubble. Available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b083p4lw. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

References:

BBC Radio 4 (2017) Fave ways to burst your social media bubble. Available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/3n9yf0D5WxRZJGclBMtFGwK/five-ways-to-burst-your-social-media-bubble. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Farnam Street (2017) How filter bubbles distort reality: everything you need to know. Available at: https://fs.blog/2017/07/filter-bubbles/. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Grimes, D. (2017) Echo chambers are dangerous – we must try to break free of our online bubbles. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/science/blog/2017/dec/04/echo-chambers-are-dangerous-we-must-try-to-break-free-of-our-online-bubbles. (Accessed: 27 March 2019).

Everyday life and Mass Observation

Mass Observation. Wow, sounds intriguing, doesn’t it? It should!

This resource offers revolutionary access to one of the most important archives for the study of Social History in the modern era. You can log in using your Newcastle University Campus ID and password to explore original manuscript and typescript papers created and collected by the Mass Observation organisation, as well as printed publications, diaries, photographs and interactive features dating from 1937 to 1972.

If you’re interested in learning more about the topics currently influencing our lives, it would do no harm to research the social history topics available within Mass Observation such as anti-Semitism, the economy, austerity, education, women at work, religion, mining, news, the Government, smoking, drinking, sexual behaviour, propaganda, unemployment and writing (to name just a few!).

Mass Observation home page

Mass Observation Diarist maps

If you want to know more about Mass Observation and to see some samples from the collection, then you could take a look at the Mass Observation Twitter feed, or there is a recorded webinar available for you to watch via YouTube in order to get the best out of the resource.

Wiley Digital Archives on trial

We have month-long trial access to Wiley Digital Archives, currently comprising archives from the New York Academy of Sciences, The Royal Anthropological Institute and The Royal College of Physicians.

Wiley Digital Archives is a continuous program of new databases comprised of unique or rare historical primary sources, digitized from leading societies, libraries, and archives around the world, and made accessible in ways that tie directly to research outcomes and educational goals. All Archives are cross-searchable, and contain tools for searching, browsing, analyzing and visualizing primary source content.

What’s currently included?

Wiley Digital Archives: New York Academy of Sciences
This database offers the digitized archives of the New York Academy of Sciences from ~1803 to 2013, and contains a range of searchable manuscripts, correspondence, reports, conference papers, proceedings, maps, surveys, data and ephemera produced by the researchers and members of NYAS. The history of science and medicine in North America are represented in this collection, which also focuses on environmental history, pollution, human rights, public health and ethics. 


Wiley Digital Archives: Royal Anthropological Institute
This database offers the digitized archives of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland from ~1763 to 2016, and contains a range of searchable manuscripts, correspondence, reports, conference papers, proceedings, maps, surveys, fieldnotes, drawings, data and ephemera produced by the researchers and members of the RAI. Featured is a collection of over 200,000 ethnographic photographs, taken by anthropologists all around the world. The RAI collections covers the history of anthropology (cultural, biological, medical, visual), and connects to colonialism and other aspects of the social sciences and humanities, with content drawn from an array of expeditions and studies across the globe. 


Wiley Digital Archives: Royal College of Physicians
This database offers the digitized archives of the Royal College of Physicians of London from ~1300 to 1980, and contains a range of searchable monographs, rare books, manuscripts, correspondence, reports, conference papers, medical reports, medical education textbooks, proceedings, lectures, anatomical drawings, public health surveys, photographs, drawings, data and ephemera produced by the researchers and members of the RCP. The history of medicine from early origins in folklore through to the modern practice is represented in this collection, with strong connections to the medical humanities, the interactions between medicine and culture, religion, and government, the establishment of public health systems, and the policies which govern medical education and practice.

For all three databases, the content is presented as digital images, with searchable text and metadata, on a platform which also allows for visual and textual analyses and is cross-searchable with archives from other societies in the Wiley Digital Archives program.

Please explore and send your comments to your Liaison Librarian by the end of April 2019.

 

Top tips to get you started with revision

Hoping to get some revision done during the Easter Vacation?

Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Have a look at our MCQ collection in the Quiet study area of the Walton Library. This collection has books with MCQs, EMQs, SBAs, OSCEs and other self  assessment and answer questions on many different subjects including;  anatomy, medicine, physiology, surgery and more. Look out for the green stickers on the spines of the books.

2. Check out the the Exams and Revision Section on the ASK (Academic Skills Kit) webpages for more help.

3. Remember to take regular breaks.

4. Stay well hydrated, eat properly and get some exercise.

5. Remember to check the date, time and place of your exam well in advance of  the day, make sure you know where you are going.

Have a good Easter Vacation. Happy revising and Good Luck in the exams when you get back.

Image by Shurriken from Pixabay

From all the staff in the Walton Library.

Supporting our students over the Easter vacation

Image by Shurriken from Pixabay

We are Still here during the Easter Vacation [29th March-29th April]

Your University libraries will be open throughout the Easter vacation (closing only on Sunday 21st April). Our main change is the libraries will be open slightly shorter hours and will include self-service time.  Please note that during self-service times, access to the building will be by Newcastle University Smartcard only. For more info on opening hours please see the link below:-

https://www.ncl.ac.uk/library/about/opening-hours/#robinson

We are still around and can help with 1-1 consultancies and Endnote support. Take a look at the topics below and see how we can help you during the vacation.

Live chat

If you have an urgent question, you will find 24/7 support via our out-of-hours Live Chat Service http://libhelp.ncl.ac.uk/ provided by a co-operative of academic librarians from around the world

Revision

Please remember to stay hydrated and take regular breaks

For exam and revision advice visit:  https://internal.ncl.ac.uk/ask/exams-revision  which has information to help you at this stressful time.

Library Help FAQs

Believe us, there is no such thing as a stupid question and you’ll probably find that your question has been asked many times before! Why not check the library FAQ to see we have already found the answer  http://libhelp.ncl.ac.uk/

Visit your Subject Guide

Working on an assignment or revising, and unsure where to find the information you need?  Visit your library  for advice and quick links to specialist information resources for your subject. Want to know more?

 

Are you working on a Dissertation or Project?

Make sure you visit our brand new interactive guide:-  https://libguides.ncl.ac.uk/dissertations

This provides you with advice on a wide range of relevant skills, such as finding, managing and evaluating information. It also directs you to the key information resources for your subject area.

It’s easy to navigate, with clear text and short videos throughout. We hope you find it helpful, and if you’ve got any feedback, please let us know.