Author Archives: jrochkind

ActiveRecord Concurrency in Rails4: Avoid leaked connections!

My past long posts about multi-threaded concurrency in Rails ActiveRecord are some of the most visited posts on this blog, so I guess I’ll add another one here; if you’re a “tl;dr” type, you should probably bail now, but past … Continue reading

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SAGE retracts 60 papers in “peer review citation ring”

A good reminder that a critical approach to scholarly literature doens’t end with “Beall’s list“, and maybe doesn’t even begin there. I still think academic libraries/librarians should consider it part of their mission to teach students (and faculty) about current issues … Continue reading

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Botnet-like attack on EZProxy server

So once last week, and then once again this week, I got reports that our EZProxy server was timing out. When it happened this week, I managed to investigate while the problem was still occuring, and noticed that the EZProxy … Continue reading

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Ascii-ization transliteration built into ruby I18n gem in Rails

A while ago, I was looking for a way in ruby to turn text with diacritics (é) and ligatures (Æ) and other such things into straight ascii (e ; AE). I found there were various gems that said they could do … Continue reading

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Dangers of internet culture to humans, and alternatives

I am increasingly not liking what the use of the internet does to our society, and to us. I actually find that maybe my techie friends are more likely to share these concerns than my friends at large, which some find … Continue reading

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security and reliability of research data storage

So, according the Chronicle of Higher Education, a vendor that sold cloud storage of research data to researchers had a crash where they lost a bunch of data.  (Thanks Dr. Sarah Roberts for the pointer.) This is a disaster for many of … Continue reading

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ILLiad target added to Umlaut

Umlaut is the open source “SFX front-end”, “link resolver aggregator”, or “known-item service provider.” I recently added a service plugin to generate links to ILLiad‘s OpenURL receiving point, so you can place an ILL request for the current citation.  Currently … Continue reading

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Adding constraints to projects for success

The company Github is known as a place where engineers have an unusual amount of freedom to self-organize as far as what projects they work on. Here’s a very interesting blob post from a Github engineer, Brandon Keepers, on “Lessons … Continue reading

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Academics investigate Big Deals

Gowers, a British mathematician has a very interesting blog post exploring the ramifications and characteristics of the current market in which universities pay for electronic access to academic journals. The latter half of the essay has a few details of how … Continue reading

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Amateur digital archival forensics

Two interesting projects in archival digital forensics — that is, rescuing digital content on legacy media and in legacy formats — recently came to my attention. Both involved significant contributions from amateurs and/or volunteers, which is interesting. Firstly, according to … Continue reading

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