Saturday, May 10, 2014

"Big Data" Report

On May 1, the White House released a major report on technology, innovation and privacy: "Big Data: Seizing Opportunities, Preserving Values." The report is based on a 90-day study examining "how big data will transform the way we live and work and alter the relationships between government, citizens, businesses, and consumers."  "Big Data" makes a number of specific recommendations to the President in an attempt to "present solutions that can enhance accountability, privacy, and the rights of citizens" while at the same time focusing on "how the public and private sectors can maximize the benefits of big data while minimizing its risks." Presented and endorsed by a working group of cabinet members and high level officials headed by John Podesta, the President's Counsel, the recommendations include advancing the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights and amending the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (18 U.S.C. Sec. 2510-22) to ensure protection for modern digital content.

The White House web site provides both a brief summary of findings and a fact sheet for the "Big Data" report. The assessment of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which advocates for electronic privacy rights, is here.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Friday, May 09, 2014

More constitutional upheaval in NY?

Moving from satanic statues to more mundane voting statutes, Gov. Cuomo has signed legislation (S3149) to enter New York in an interstate agreement to award its electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the majority of the popular vote. 

The National Popular Vote agreement is triggered when 270 electoral votes are reached, enough to give the states who signed the compact a majority of the electoral votes.  The National Popular Vote law has been enacted by 11 jurisdictions possessing 165 electoral votes — 61% of the 270 electoral votes needed to activate it.

Hat tip: Long Island Business News

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Satanic Statue Proposal To Test The First Amendment?

New York-based Satanic Temple members have proposed to erect a bronze and stone satanic sculpture outside the Oklahoma State Capitol building. The sculpture was commissioned to counter a monument of the Ten Commandments that was installed outside the Oklahoma Capitol building in 2012. The ACLU is now involved. Curious? Then read more here.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

New Student Loan Legislation Introduced

Yesterday, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts introduced a bill that would allow people with Federal student loan debt to refinance at lower student loan rates.  

Fact Sheet on the Legislation Available here.

Bill Text Available here 

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Find a Quiet Place in NYC With the Breather App

Now that you have passed the bar and have to occasionally head in to NYC for work, the Breather app will let you take some time in a quiet place to relax and/or work while in the bustling metropolis known for a lack of quiet spaces to drop in for a half hour or more.  The Breather app lets you rent space on a daily, short time basis.

"Sure, you could find a local library or stop in at a nearby Starbucks, but for a few dollars, you get your own quiet space, privacy, fast, free Wi-Fi, charging docks for your phone and other devices, and a comfortable, cozy atmosphere. All Breather locations include pencils, pens, notepads, candy and other helpful stuff. Some also include dry erase idea walls." Read more here.

Breather app is available for iOS and Android devices.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Monday, May 05, 2014

You have been heard

We heard your suggestions.  Thanks to those of you who completed the Library survey and suggested that there be more copies of some of the Study Guides.  The Library has added copies of the most popular Study aids - including some Examples and Explanations and  Flash Cards.

See Study Guides for a list of what we have available.

As always, keep the suggestions coming - comment here, drop a note in the Suggestion Box at the Circulation desk, or stop by to chat with your favorite Reference librarian.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat

Sunday, May 04, 2014

New York Forms Guide

Are you researching New York forms and would like to have all the resources in one place?  Try the New New York Forms Guide, this guide provides lists of major sets (like Bender's, Carmody and more), area specific forms and online free forms.  This guide only reflects resources available in the Law Library in print and online.  Click here to access the guide.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat