520_reviews

Internet Reviews

Joni R. Roberts is associate university librarian for public services and collection development at Willamette University, email: jroberts@willamette.edu, and Carol A. Drost is associate university librarian for technical services at Willamette University, email: cdrost@willamette.edu

American Battlefield Trust. Access: https://www.battlefields.org/.

American Battlefield Trust “preserves America’s hallowed battlegrounds and educates the public about what happened there and why it matters.” The Trust was created in 2018 through a merger of earlier organizations dedicated to preserving Civil War and Revolutionary War battlefields.

The site is organized into four main areas: information about various battles, material on visiting selected battlefields, current preservation initiatives, and a donor page. Links to current news and events feature prominently in a menu bar. The layout is modern and attractive, as well as easy to navigate.

The learning resources include lesson plans and programs for teachers. Materials are classified by type and collection, including videos, photographs, maps, articles, and primary source items. Several productive hours could be spent exploring all the material in this section alone. Notable collections include “Women in War,” “Civil War Music,” and “Christmas in Wartime,” along with biographies of prominent individuals and resources associated with specific battles.

The section on visiting the battlefields includes links to virtual tours and site-specific mobile applications, along with visitor itineraries. The material appears to be up-to-date, and the apps tested were available for both iOS and Android devices. The itineraries frequently include links to other organizations, especially the National Park Service, and are easy to use and interpret.

The sections on preservation activities and giving options highlight current efforts underway to preserve lands under imminent threat of development, and lands that have been successfully preserved through past acquisitions. There is also information on various citizen initiatives to support and lobby for battlefield preservation. For Trust members, benefits include a quarterly magazine, the opportunity to attend an annual conference, and member-only digital content.

American Battlefield Trust is quite active, as reflected in its news items. Current and up-to-date, they include public events, programs and preservation activities, and news items about the Trust itself. The organization has a strong social media presence, and all of the linked sites had been updated within a day or two of the visit. The website itself is well-organized and attractive. No dead links or missing content were noted. American Battlefield Trust is a useful resource for Civil and Revolutionary War students, as well as those interested in historic preservation.—Mark A. Stoffan, Western Carolina University, mstoffa@wcu.edu

International Music Score Library Project. Access: https://imslp.org/.

The International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP) is a database dedicated to sharing scores, recorded music, and literature about music in the public domain. It is also known as the Petrucci Music Library, in honor of the first printed book of music in 1501. The site’s curator is Edward W. Guo, but its content is also expanded by site contributors providing files and articles.

As of August 2018, there are 445,000 scores and 52,000 recordings in IMSLP. The homepage features new scores, new recordings, featured items, and news. The site provides discussion forums and an informative FAQ section.

Tabs at the top of the homepage enable users to search scores by “Composers,” “All people” (performers, editors, and composers), “Nationality,” “Time period,” and “Instrumentation/Genre.” Recordings are searchable by composers, performer name, and commercial recordings. Access to the commercial recordings requires a $22 annual membership to IMSLP that also includes instant access to new uploads and has no ads. The site also encourages donations, but most of the site can be used free of cost.

Since the servers for IMSLP are physically located in Canada, the website follows Canadian copyright law, which varies slightly from that of the United States. A section explains the differences, so users can comply with appropriate copyright law. Entries also indicate if the work is not in public domain under U.S. copyright law. There are comprehensive instructions about contributing to the database. Composers can contribute their own work in the composer portal.

Once users find the composer or performer they are seeking, a variety of information is available. There are lists of works, as well as links to the works accessible in IMSLP. The user can view scores and listen to recordings. There are more scores than recordings available. There are often several editions of scores, and they can be downloaded as PDFs. The PDFs are clear and easy to read.

IMSLP is a great resource for recordings and, particularly, for scores in the public domain. As new files and articles are added, the content will continue to increase. The site is especially helpful as a starting point for researching composers and works that may not be available elsewhere.—Mary Wise, Central Washington University, mary.wise@cwu.edu

Sustainable Communities Online. Access: https://www.sustainable.org/.

Sustainable Communities Online is a site that serves as a repository for sustainable community resources. The website, formerly known as the Sustainable Communities Network, emerged in the mid-1990s with the goal of collecting sustainable information and providing easy access to the general public. The website furthers this goal by providing a broad variety of resources. One will find everything from wildlife and plant conservation to healthy living, green architecture, and sustainable governance.

A lot of work was put into developing this site. Each page has a brief description of what can be found in a section or specific resource. The site groups resources into six main categories: “Community,” “Economy,” “Environment,” “Living,” “Governance,” and “Smart Growth.” These categories break down into subsections that list specific resources.

Within the “Environment” category, which is traditionally associated with sustainability, one will find resources related to “Water,” “Energy,” “Air and Climate,” “Biodiversity,” and “Land, Forests and Ecosystems.” Depending on the topic, researchers may find a lot of resources or only a few. Each resource also helpfully includes related subject tags and categories that lead to more resources.

Because the topic of sustainability is so broad, this site will appeal to a variety of researchers, even within the context of sustainable communities. While there are a surprising number of organizations and institutions listed, there are also a number of scholarly journal articles and newspaper articles. One major downside is the number of broken links throughout the entire site at the time of this review. Even with the broken links, researchers will find this site very handy.—John Repplinger, Willamette University, jrepplin@willamette.edu

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