- Ambient Findability
Another great book from OReilly and Associates
by Peter Morville
The world is full of information and we find ourselves buried in it. How do we not become so overwhelmed that we just settle for the first thing that comes along, or worse, just give up? Morville has some great insight regarding how we handle this information overload. We can simplify, focus, organize, and structure our lives and information in such ways that we do not become a victim. I borrowed this book from the MCLA Webmaster, Amy Stevens. It is one book I would like to have on my reference shelf so that I might be able to return to various sections as I try to manage the vast amounts of information I've become accostomed to in my life. A thumbs up for anyone who would like to get a better handle on living in the information age.
- Making Maps
A Visual Guide to Map Design for GIS
by John Krygier and Denis Wood
An easy to read, informative book aimed at improving design and layout skills for GIS map making professionals with little or no cartography training. This book was an excellent resource during my first year internship as a GIS map maker for a nationally based real estate development firm. Most of what I was being taught about style and cartography in the office was emphasized over again in this well laid out book. Everything from colors to fonts, alignment and proximity was covered in clear and concise ways, just like your map is supposed to do. If you need to strengthen your message, maybe you need to reduce the amount of information on your map. I strongly recommend this book if you feel your maps need to be simplified in order to tell more.
- Exploring Stone Walls
A Field Guide to New England's Stone Walls
by Robert M. Thorson, 2005
New England stone walls are a 450 million year old history lesson. The stones tell us a great deal about how and where this area of the world formed and what modern man has done with it over the past several hundred years. Locations of stones moved by glaciers dictate to us the power of glaciers, hundreds of miles deep, that carved and shaped the New England landscape. Few areas remain untouched by the hand of man. The clearing of stones from fields is one of the first signs of western civilization that can show us what these fields were used for. Larger stones were moved to fence in livestock where smaller stones were cleared from fields to enhance croplands. The ages of these stones predate the dawn of man, but mosses found growing on these stone walls can give us a good indication of the age of the walls, if we look close enough and think about the evidence. Trees grow up and around these walls, in some cases knocking them over, and in others completely enveloping them. Critters find homes in the crevices, finding safety and shelter from the storm.
This book was written by a Professor of Geology, at the University of Connecticut. It explores the scientific depths of these walls as well as the socio-political impact on the people who created them. It is in some places a tough and scientific study that common readers might want to glaze over, and in others an interesting perspective on the settlers of early America. Excellent black and white photographs throughout the book help explain the history of man and life of stones.
- A Sand County ALMANAC
and Sketches Here and There
By Aldo Leopold, 1949
This book is for those of us who understand we can not and should not live without considering ourselves to be an integral part of nature. Leopold explores life from the sandy farmlands of his home in Wisconsin with a perspective we would come to expect from the father of modern ecology.
- GLOBAL WARMING
The Causes The Perils The Solutions The Actions: What You Can Do
TIME INC. HOME ENTERTAINMENT, 2007
This collection of mostly previouly published articles from Time Magazine revisit the notion that the uncharacteristic warming of global temperatures has been strongly influenced by mankind's addition of carbon and greenhouse type gasses to the atmosphere. For hundreds of years coal and trees have been burned at a faster rate than ever before conceived rates, artificially condensing our previously oxygen rich atmosphere with carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulfurs, and other elements preventing radiant heating from escaping the planets protected biosphere. This process is knocking the delicate balance of Earth systems out of whack. From the melting of inland glaciers to the shrinking of the polar ice caps to the rising intensity of hurricanes and loss of species, we can see that our home is in peril. This impressive collection of articles is an easy to read collection of photo rich essays detailing the state of the phenomena known as GLOBAL WARMING.