Saturday, February 12, 2011

Wayback Machine Getting Better

The Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, the wonderful research tool that captures earlier versions of web sites from as far back as 1996, has just released a new version in beta, with a simpler basic search page, faster navigation, and a cool "show all" feature for showing the dates and times that particular site was crawled (when a snapshot was taken) in each year. Internet expert Gary Price walks you through the new version in a recent article from Information Today. The beta has its own url:, where you can try it out and let them know what you think. The original "classic" Wayback Machine is still available at

the Virtual Library Cat

Friday, February 11, 2011

Time Management and email

Just like law students, we virtual cats never have enough time and often need reminders to look after something later on. How many times have you read an email, planned to get back to it later and then became involved in something else and totally forgot?

Gmail has an extension called Boomerang that can come to the rescue. Boomerang allows you send an email later (need to wish your cousin a happy birthday three days from now - just type the message now and schedule to send it on his/her birthday). You can also reschedule an email you have received to be redelivered at a time chosen by you. Great for bill paying reminders. My favorite use of Boomerang is to send and email reminder to myself but schedule it when I need the reminding.

You can download the Boomerang extension (for free, of course, this is Gmail, after all) in seconds.

Happy Friday!

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Restrictions On Twitter In Courts: A Foreign Perspective

We’ve all heard of restrictions on jurors’ use of Twitter in American courtrooms. English courts are now considering restricting the use of Twitter by courtroom spectators, as well. Read more here.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Searching Outside Your Contract: WestlawNext Example

Attention WestlawNext users:

While we pay for access to a lot of content on WestlawNext here at Hofstra, it is common for a law firm to pay for access to specific content (often content relevant to the firm's practice areas), and then pay high per-document or per-minute charges for items that are not including within that subscription (this is true for both Westlaw and WestlawNext, as well as Lexis).

WestlawNext now provides examples of such charges for students to view. (On WestlawNext, click on Tools, and then "subscriber pricing guide." Or just view the PDF here.) Some databases are $55 per minute.

We say it often here: if you have access to Westlaw, WestlawNext, or Lexis after law school, know and understand your firm's contract.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Reference desk for Tuesday

My duty as a citizen calls - literally - I have been called for jury duty today. This means there will be no Reference desk coverage after 5pm (Tues., 2/8). I hope I get on a juicy cat's rights case!

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Monday, February 07, 2011

Dogs' Nose (Knows)

Canine Detection Evidence at is a collection of studies, standards and resources about canine scent detection evidence. This is a fun overview of how dogs' olfactory prowess is trained and used for detection. The ads at the end illustrate a new use for dogs' noses, finding bedbugs!
Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Career Research Resources

Are you looking for resources to search various attorneys, firms, government offices and other legal institutions for internships and jobs? There are a couple of great resources that can help you obtain this information. The Leadership Library provides information for major United States government offices, judicial, corporate, nonprofit organizations and more. This database allows you to search using location, firm size, specialty and more. You can also search for information via Martindale-Hubbell which contain profiles for over one million lawyers and firms in the United States, Canada and 160 other countries. Martindale-Hubbell also provides several search options including organization name, location, law school attended, years in practice and more.
Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat