Dublin City Libraries open for 'Browse and Borrow'
4 May 2021
From Monday, May 10, sixteen Dublin City libraries are open for browsing and borrowing from Monday to Saturday. At this point of a phased re-opening there will be no seating for reading or studying, and users are encouraged to keep their visit as short as possible, and to use the self-service kiosks or library app to issue and return items.
Work Matters at the Library is a national Libraries programme that is designed to help those looking for a job or a career change or starting their own business. The first area we are going to look at is supporting those who are looking for jobs or changing career, starting with a look at CV’s and cover letters.
Are you thinking of setting up a new business or extending an existing one? Perhaps, you are looking into breaking into a new or analogous Irish market or simply want to see the current and forthcoming trends that may impact you and your organisation.
Throughout the Covid 19 situation, the Business Information Service, provided by the Central Library, has carried on. Like the businesses and educational institutions that we support, we have had to adapt our service.
The Business Information Service, based in the Central Library, has continued to support business and education throughout the pandemic. While we can’t be there in person to help with research we can help remotely.
Euromonitor International is the publisher of the Passport database - a powerful resource for international market, consumer and economic research. During COVID 19 restrictions staff at the Business Information Centre use this resource to answer patron enquires as diverse as the coffee market in Ireland to the market for gum in Morocco.
Until the temporary Covid 19 closure, the Business Library in the Central Library offered library visitors access to many valuable e-resources. Following discussions with our suppliers, library staff are now in a position to remotely access several of these databases. In the past library users undertook their own research in the library. In this new situation, detailed below, library users email questions to the business library staff who will then search the databases listed for useful answers. We are pleased to be able to restore an important part of the service we offered in the Business Library, and we will do our best to answer your queries.Mintel: covers Irish consumer reports.Mintel is one of our most popular databases. We have a subscription to their Irish consumer reports. It’s a resource that entrepreneurs and students regularly travelled to the business library to use. We find these reports are particularly useful for anyone writing a business plan. Mintel reports provide a combination of consumer data and expert analysis. For each report, they typically commission a survey from a sample of 1,350 ROI and 650 NI people. The information gathered from surveys, trade and media sources is presented in a digestible form by an analyst with experience in the area. Mintel Reports cover many topics in the areas of Finance, Food & Drink, Leisure, Lifestyles and Retail.New reports are produced regularly and they reflect the changing tastes of the Irish public. A recent example is, for instance, Healthy Eating – Salt, Sugar, Fat. Market research needs to be up to date and we find Mintel reacts quickly to dynamic situations, the two most recent reports they have produced on Automotive Retail, and the Cheese Industry already contain predications about how Covid 19 will effect customer behaviour in these markets.Marketline: covers every major market place in the world.This database provides a vast amount of information. It’s one we find especially useful to students seeking to do PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental) analysis of a particular country and for business people interested in overseas markets. In Marketline there is access to company, industry, financial, city and country business data, case studies, data and statistics for every major marketplace in the world.Euromonitor: covers a number of countries around the world.Euromonitor’s Passport Service provides detailed data and analysis on industries and consumer reviews and trends across a number of countries around the world. It provides access to thousands of country and market research reports, company profiles and breaking news. Its forecasts are there to help develop business opportunities.How to access this service. Email your enquiry to [email protected] and a librarian will search the relevant databases and let you know what the process yields. You will be asked to read and accept the terms and conditions (by email) relating to relevant database information. After you have emailed your acceptance a copy of the relevant information will then be emailed to you.Who can access this service? This service is available to members of Dublin City Libraries. If you are not a member you can join online. The service is also available to members of the public referred by our Work Matters library partners.We would also like to encourage you to look at the other useful business resources available, and on BorrowBox, all accessible with your library card. Submitted by Sandra in the Business Library.
Evolution of the Computer: from mainframes to current technologies
An evolution has occurred with bit / byte data that has transformed the IT world over the last 60 years. The logic of inputting a code to a system, processing that code and then producing a result, or the arithmetic / logical operation was the basic groundings for the first bit-serial binary computer in the late 1940s.The first computing generation occurred from 1942 to 1955 with the Mainframe Computer, a machine which used vacuum tube technology to make electronic digital computers. The first bit-serial binary computer was the BINAC which was launched in 1949. It could calculate data in milliseconds. Next was the ‘ENIAC - a first electronic general-purpose computer which could solve ‘a large class of numerical problems’ through reprogramming. Other computer manufacturers followed suit.IBM 7090 computer and personnel, 1961. Image source: NASA Ames Research Center (NASA-ARC)The vacuum tube was replaced with transistors (1955 to 1964) and this was categorized as the second computing generation. The transistor allowed computers ‘become smaller, faster, cheaper, more energy-efficient and more reliable than their first-generation predecessors.’ Though the transistor still generated a great deal of heat that subjected the computer to damage, it was a vast improvement over the vacuum tube. Second-generation computers still relied however, on punched cards for input and printouts for output.Minicomputers (1964 – 1975) heralded the third computing generation. In 1960, ‘Digital Equipment introduced the first minicomputer. It was the first commercial computer equipped with a keyboard and monitor. Integrated circuits were used which were smaller in size, more reliable and used less energy in comparison to previous generations. Also, they were a lot cheaper than the mainframe and mid-size computers from IBM and other competitors.Image: PDP-1 minicomputer. Image: Flickr by Hiddenloop.The minicomputer was widely used in universities, research labs and small corporations and used computer languages such as Fortran or BASIC. It grew to have considerably high processing power and capacity.The use of a microchip introduced a new fourth generation of computing in 1975: The Personal Computer. This chip was small with quick processing power and was commercially available. As microprocessors became more powerful, the mainframes were used less.Technology has advanced exponentially from a simple machine calculating basic arithmetic in the 1940s to a machine capable of accessing web browsers, digital media, databases, emailing and much more. The PC has evolved into something great with advances in graphical user interfaces (GUIs), the mouse and handheld devices. Additionally, the iPhone, the phablet, the tablet and the laptop are widely used as they are cheap to manufacture, easy to use and competitively priced.So, what lies ahead? The fifth generation of computing is being researched at present and involves an innovative artificial intelligence where the computer will understand and interpret spoken language. This once again will bring a new evolution in a cosmic computer IT industry. We await to see how it emerges.Read moreDublin City Public Libraries stocks computers and technology magazines such as .Net, Computerscope, GeoConnexion, TechPro and Which and computer and technology digital magazines.Butterfield, Andrew, Ngondi, Gerard Ekembe (April 2016) ‘Dictionary of Computing Science’Bell, C. Gordon (January 2013). ‘Rise and Fall of Minicomputers’www.webopedia.comwww.wikipedia.comwww.merriam-webster.com/dictionarywww.vikingwaters.com/htmlpages/mf/history.htmwww.thocp.net/hardware/mainframe.htmwww.which.co.ukLearn MoreImprove your technological know-how with over 65 online computer courses available for free with your library membership via Universal Class e.g. Computer Basics, Computer Programming, Business Applications, Software Programmes and Technology Skills.This article is based on a project completed by Gemma Daly, Business Information Centre, as part of the Institute of Public Administration's Diploma in Computer Studies.
The Business Information Centre (BIC) located in the Central Library, Dublin's Ilac Centre, is a key resource for the business community, researchers, those starting or growing a business, and those seeking career direction and employment skills.Resources available at the Business Information Centre include books, directories, Acts of the Oireachtas, business magazines, databases, newspaper articles and Irish company reports. Find out more about the wealth of business information resources available at the BIC.But the story doesn't end there! The Centre also arranges lectures and workshops, and hosts Information & Advice stands on a regular basis. During the second half of August alone you can attend a talk on careers in the culinary arts and hospitality industry (31/8), talk to a health promotion advisor about cancer prevention (18/8), get information on postgraduate course in ICT (22/8) and information on entitlements for older people (23/8). Check out events taking place in the BIC.The Start Your Own Business Autumn series of free talks starts on the 15th September and consists of six lectures that run until the 20th October. This series is particularly suited to entrepreneurs, business enthusiasts, job seekers, inventors or anyone wishing to go it alone in a business world.View photos of the Business Information Centre on flickr! (or click on images above)