IMU-Net 38: November 2009

A Bimonthly Email Newsletter from the International Mathematical Union
Editor: Mireille Chaleyat-Maurel, University Paris Descartes, Paris, France

CONTENTS

1. Editorial
2. IMU on the Web
3. ICM 2010 on Twitter
4. ICM 2010 Financial Support
5. ICM 2010 Satellite Conferences
6. Prize "Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh"
7. Subscribing to IMU-Net

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1. EDITORIAL

Dear Reader,
IMU-Net has celebrated its 6th birthday!
I hope that you still appreciate receiving the Newsletter and feel
that it helps improving the communication between IMU and the
worldwide mathematical community, by reporting on the activities of
IMU, major international mathematical events and developments, and
other topics of general mathematical interest.
You can also help us increase the distribution of the Newsletter by
forwarding this issue to colleagues and encouraging them to subscribe.
I hope you will enjoy reading this issue,

Mireille Chaleyat-Maurel
Editor of IMU-Net

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2. IMU THE WEB: Some Thoughts on E-Books

Not surprisingly, journals have garnered greater attention than have
books in the evolving digital library environment. Indeed, many
research libraries are reaching a tipping point at which our day to
day concerns are focused as much, if not more, on augmentation of the
electronic collection than the print collection. While we hear lots
about general interest and trade books in electronic form (e-books,
e-readers) especially driven by mobile computing, a similar switch
away from printed books does not yet seem to be the case for advanced
and research mathematical monographs. At least, most of us
responsible for mathematics collections are still buying printed books
- insofar as we can afford them these days- because students and
faculty want them. The codex, an old form, still presents tough
competition for initiatives like Amazon's Kindle, Sony's e-Reader, and
various manifestations on PDA's and laptops. Mathematical material
has special representation requirements and intense study on screens
is uncomfortable for many people.

Students tell me that they might be interested in certain textbooks,
if an electronic form were available, just to make it easier to carry
around. Unfortunately, the particular ones they want are not
available to me to license on their behalf. Pedagogical material will
likely follow its own path of development, largely dependent upon
faculty insistence on affordability to students and willingness to
move away from over-reliance on just a few standard texts.

Where research level material is concerned, edited collections derived
from meetings seem to be so close to journals (apart from the level of
peer review), one wonders why they should have a print production
stream at all.

Search of legacy e-books (scanned) is already proving to be a boon to
mathematicians. Think of your own story in which you found something
you really needed on a page of a Google-scanned book. I know I can
point to a recent case in which we found a key paper from the 1950s
from a journal whose backfile we did not have simply because a scanned
version of the author's selecta was done by Google.

Libraries are finding challenges in making e-books available because,
for those collections which are licensed, there is the difficulty of
integrating the metadata with existing data for the print collection.
Publishers pressure to serve the book material from their own
proprietary platforms. At the opposite extreme, we might like to
integrate the files of books freely downloadable from individual
author web sites, offering users a single institutional library search
across all such electronic books. Until general agreement from said
publishers is reached, this remains only on the Wish List. And by the
way, in a similar to the marketing of bundles of "all our journals",
publishers will likely insist that libraries take all book titles in a
given subject area. In this way, libraries and in turn mathematics
faculty lose the capacity to select or shape collections as relevant
to their needs and finances.

The move towards more digital material, including monographs, is
inevitable. One hopes that the various audiences for mathematics will
find their needs met as things progress.

Carol Hutchins
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences Library, New York University

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3. ICM IS ON TWITTER!

Follow us at twitter.com/ICM2010

Twitter is a free and flexible service that enables its users to send
and read messages limited to 140 text characters displayed on the
author's profile page and delivered to the author's subscribers who
are known as /followers/.

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4. ICM 2010: Financial Support for Mathematicians from Developing Countries
(excluding INDIA)

The International Mathematical Union is currently accepting
applications for financial support to attend the International
Congress of Mathematicians 2010, to be held in Hyderabad, India.

Deadline for applications is January 1, 2010

Eligibility criteria:
1. Qualification:
The applicant must either have a Ph.D. in mathematics or at least
post-doctoral level research experience in mathematics.

2. Country of permanent work place:
The permanent workplace of the mathematician must be one of the
developing countries listed at the following webpage:
www.icm2010.org.in/financial-support/category-1-2-countries
(Note: the country of birth is not considered.)

For detailed information visit the following link:
www.icm2010.org.in/financial-support/international-participants

Rajat Tandon
Secretary, Executive Organizing Committee ICM 2010

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5. ICM 2010 SATELLITE CONFERENCES

The next International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM 2010) is
scheduled to be held in India at Hyderabad in 19-27 August. As part of
this, satellite conferences are organized. The conferences are listed
at:
www.icm2010.org.in/scientific-program/satellite-conferences

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6. Prize "Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh" (or Ibni Prize)

The French Society of Statistics (SFdS), the Society for Industrial
and Applied Mathematics (SMAI) and the Mathematical Society of France
(SMF) create an award in the memory of Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh to
continue his commitment to quality training of young African
mathematicians.
The Prize "Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh" is awarded annually by a
scientific committee set up by CIMPA. It will allow a student of an
institution of Central Africa or West Africa, in mathematics or
statistics, at the graduate or post-graduate level, to benefit from a
scientific training in a country other than his/her own.
All information on the prize may be found at
smf.emath.fr/SouscriptionSaleh/

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7. SUBSCRIBING TO IMU-NET

There are two ways of subscribing to IMU-Net:

1. Click on www.mathunion.org/IMU-Net with a Web browser and go
to the "Subscribe" button to subscribe to IMU-Net online.

2. Send an e-mail to imu-net-request@mathunion.org with the Subject-line:
Subject: subscribe

In both cases you will get an e-mail to confirm your subscription so
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Previous issues can be seen at:
www.mathunion.org/imu-net/archive/