Friday, May 22, 2015

The Emily Silverman Student Prize winner is...

LITS would like to congratulate Sundus Noeen, class of 2016, on her outstanding submission to the Emily Silverman '81 Student Prize competition.  Sundus' pieces are being prepared to hang on the wall near Library 619 Training Room... look for them soon!

Thanks to everyone who submitted entries and to the donor of the prize, Emily Silverman '81, for her continued generosity in furthering the intersection of art and ideas in the LITS Complex.

Friday, May 15, 2015

LITS Student Employee Profile: Qudsia Aziz on the LITS Web Team!

Qudsia Aziz has been a LITS Web Team member for four years, during which she's contributed to massive web migration projects, learned and used multiple new programming languages and frameworks, and become a contributor to the Drupal open source community. We had a few questions for Qudsia before her graduation this weekend.

Qudsia Aziz

Kabul, Afghanistan

Class Year:

Computer Science

Student Employee Position:
Web Programmer

When did you start working for the LITS Web Team?
Fall 2011

How did you hear about the position, and why were you interested?
I found this position on JobX and I decided to apply for it because it was a great opportunity to work on real web applications with a team of experienced web developers.

What is your favorite LITS Web project thus far? Least favorite?
My favorite project was writing the Webform Field Repeat module. My least favorite project was going through old HTML web pages manually during the migration of the website from RedDot to Drupal.

How do you think this position has helped your professional development?
I have had the opportunity to work on challenging web projects, work with and learn from an amazing team of web developers, and keep abreast of new web technologies.

Favorite class at MHC?
Artificial Intelligence

Career goals?
I plan to work as a software engineer.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

New Archives Exhibit Online: LGBTQ+ History at Mount Holyoke

The latest Archives and Special Collections online exhibit is up! Entitled "Persistence and Existence," it showcases different student LGBTQ+ organizations at MHC, starting in the 1970s all the way to today. The exhibit is organized chronologically and contains photographs, digital documents, and text describing the rich and complex history of exclusion that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning people face at Mount Holyoke.

Starting in 1975 with the well known "Astronomer" newspaper article, the exhibit covers the formation of the Lesbian Alumnae Network, now Lyon's Pride, the transformation of the Lesbian Alliance to include bisexual and trans identities, and the struggles students faced with peers and the administration through the early 2000s. "Persistence and Existence" includes a full digitized zine, details about racism and exclusion within the LGBTQ community, and short bios about each of the orgs that exist today. 

Check out the exhibit here and please contact the Archives to help us fill in the gaps! We know that there's so much LGBTQ history that has been erased and silenced and we are actively working to preserve the past and future. We would love your materials or information pertaining to student organizations, campus goings on, and your own experience as a member of the Mount Holyoke community! 

Friday, May 8, 2015

Drop-in Moodle help for instructors on May 12

The LITS liaisons will be offering a drop-in session for instructors interested in setting up their Moodle sites for future semesters, on Tuesday, May 12, from 10:30 AM to 12 Noon in Library 431. 

We're happy to help you copy resources from an older course site, start setting up one from scratch, or just answer general questions about Moodle. See you there!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Panchatantra: Stories of ageless wisdom from South Asia

It’s May, the month of finals! There’s more to May, though; it’s also the South Asian Heritage Month. In the light of this, we want to point out some exciting books we have here at LITS to help you learn more about the culture of story telling in South Asia. The Panchatantra (which in Sanskrit means ‘Five Principles’) is a canonical collection of animal fables in verse and prose. It contains stories of Sanskrit (Hindu) as well as Pali (Buddhist) origins.It is one of the earliest and most frequently translated literary product of India. It contains numerous fables, often three to four layers in depth, arranged inside a frame story. It is believed that the original version, attributed to Pandit Vishnu Sharma, was composed in the third century BC.

*A page from a Persian translation of Panchatantra depicts
 a manipulative jackal trying to lead his lion king into a war.

The prelude of Panchatantra illustrates that Vishnu Sharma was asked by the King of Mahilaropya, to teach the principles of governance to his three unruly sons. Through his stories, Vishnu Sharma was able to teach nitishastra (treatise on government and political science) to the three Princes, who otherwise refused to study. According to Patrick Olivelle (the author of an English translation of the book), “Panchatantra is a complex book that does not seek to reduce the complexities of human life, government policy, political strategies and ethical dilemmas into simple solutions; it can and does speak to different readers at different levels.”  The five principles illustrated in its five volumes are -separation of friends (The Lion and the Bull), gaining of friends (The Dove, Crow,  Mouse, Tortoise and Deer), war and peace (Of Crows and Owls), the loss of gains (The Monkey and the Crocodile) and imprudence (The Brahman and the Mongoose). 

Some of the translated versions of Panchatantra available through LITS are:
  1. The Panchatantra : translated from the Sanskrit by Arthur W. Ryder (MH Cutter Collection 69Y P1 E - can be requested at the Circulation Desk) 
  2. Pancatantra of Viṣṇuśarman : by M. R. Kale (MH Stacks PK3741 .P2 1969)
  3. The five discourses on worldly wisdom by Viṣṇuśarman : translated by Patrick Olivelle (MH Stacks PK3798.V835 P3613 2006)

If you are looking for a fun and engaging book to read once you are done with finals, check out a copy from the Circulation Desk and enjoy some wonderful stories from South Asia!

*Image obtained from the New World Encyclopedia under Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.