Wednesday, January 11, 2017

SearchResearch Challenge (1/11/17): Finding immersive experiences

Getting immersed in your topic is usually a great idea... 

... and in the past couple of years, a number of different technologies have emerged that let you record and view 360-degree "immersive" videos.  Here's a nice example from David Hsieh:  


This is just one of many examples of immersive imagery. 


But you can imagine where my interest lies--how do you search for these things?  

Today's SearchResearch Challenges: 

1.  How DO you find immersive online experiences?  (I've mentioned videos as one way to be immersed.  Are there other ways to get that experience?)  
2.  How can you find immersive experiences by location?  For instance, can you find all of the immersives that are near the Wat Chedi Luang temple in Thailand, especially ones that show the famous reclining Buddha?  For instance, can you also find an immersive that shows you the view from the mountain peak that's about 5 miles (8 km) to the west of the temple?   
Reclining Buddha at Wat Chedi Luang temple, Thailand.

Most importantly for this week--say HOW you found the immersive experiences.  What search terms did you use?  And if you learn any new concepts about immersive experiences, let us know what terms / concepts you now know.  

(Keep in mind we're not looking for holodecks, but immersive experiences that you could plausibly have at home or in the office.)  

Search on... immersively! 




Monday, January 9, 2017

Answer: The phases (and more!) of the moon

So... what's the story here?

Why did all of the NASA missions land on the side facing the Earth? 


It struck me the other day: ALL of the NASA landings on the Moon were all on the side of the Moon facing towards the earth.  Why did they neglect the other side?   Was it a kind of strange conspiracy?


Not my photo, but very similar to what I saw on Jan 1, 2017. P/C NASA

The US sent six missions to the moon (Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17).  Here's the map of the landing sites I found with the query:  [ Apollo landing sites map ] 

Apollo landing sites. P/C NASA
 Given this background, our Challenges for this week start with this question of "why only on one side?"    
1. If you look at a map of the Apollo landing sites, they're all visible from Earth--none are on the back side (that is, the side of the moon that faces away from the Earth).  Why were all of the landing sites on THIS side?  (You'd think the back side would have been more interesting.Why didn't we go to the back side?
  
I thought about different strategies for this search, and started with: 

     [ nasa landing sites on the earth-facing side of the moon ] 

I used these terms in a long query because I wanted fairly specific documents (in particular, ones that would use words like "landing sites").  I used the phrase "earth-facing" because I wanted documents that included that terminology (and not "dark side of the moon," which I already knew many people get wrong... there is no dark side, except in albums by Pink Floyd).  

This query worked reasonably well, and I (like others) found the Quora discussion "Which side of the Moon did the Americans land on?"  Although I'm always suspicious about QA (Question-Answering) sites, this post looks pretty good.  It has lots of citations, illustrations, and it's easy to go from this Quora page to NASA web pages that say why they landed on the near (visible / earth-facing) side:  They needed constant communications access, and terrestrial radios don't make it to the other side of the Moon.  

And, of course, NASA had much better imagery of the Earth-facing side, the better to plan the missions.  

Regular Reader Jon found the Quora site with the query: 

     [apollo missions did not land on the far side because]

While Ramón used: 

     [Why Apollo missions never went to dark side of the moon]

Both of these queries are fairly long, but include words that are important for getting the right kind of results.  We're searching for a complex concept--I'm not sure you could succeed with a much shorter query.  

After checking out a few other links on the SERP, I was pretty convinced that this was the story.  

However, Regular Reader (and professional library) Debra and her colleague Anne did something much better--they limited their search to site:.gov and found some NASA documentation of their site selection process. In their words: 

"...We didn't think this was definitive enough so we did an advanced search limiting our search to .gov sites { using [ site:.gov ...] }and got this result {a document on the } Operational Constraints on Landing Sites.  It gives a very detailed explanation of why the landings needed to be on the near side - radio communications were key as was having some knowledge of the topography, and much more was known about the near side than the far side.  
This second article also points out to how the site was selected - NASA definitely wanted to know as much about the site as possible and the near side was what they had information on..."  
These days, of course, we have superb lunar images thanks the the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO).  You can check out these fantastic images at the LRO image archive site. This is sufficiently high-res that you can see the trails (and debris) left by the astronauts.  


 LRO image of the Apollo 11 Landing Site 

The LRO took this beautiful image of the Apollo 11 landing site in 2013 at 24 km (15 miles) above the surface. 

You can see the remnants of their first steps as dark regions around the Lunar Module (LM) and in dark tracks that lead to the scientific experiments the astronauts set up on the surface. The Passive Seismic Experiment Package (PSEP) provided the first lunar seismic data, returning data for three weeks after the astronauts left, and the Laser Ranging RetroReflector (LRRR) allows precise measurements that can be collected to this day. You can even spot the discarded cover of the LRRR.  If you happen to have a large telescope and a gigawatt laser, you can still use the LRRR to measure the distance to the Moon.  (If you're curious about how to do this, check out this episode of Mythbusters where they visited the Apache Point Observatory telescope and bounced some green laser light off of the LRRR. For details about Apache Point, check out the APO website.) 



2. Every so often I'd sketch out the moon as I saw it in the night sky.  Once, when I was looking at several of my sketches together, I noticed that some of the craters on the Moon's edge seemed to be in slightly different places. Huh? I know that the Moon always has the same face pointed to us, but when I looked at my sketches, it would seem that it's not always exactly the same face--especially near the edge. Why would the Moon's face be slightly different during different times of the lunar month? Is it always showing us exactly the same face at all times? 
That same Quora article about why all of the missions were on one side ALSO gave a hint about this second question as well.  In his post, Robert Walker says "Of course no part of the Moon is in permanent darkness. But we always see the same side of it, and at full Moon we see it at full phase. Actually, we see a bit to either side because of lunar libration..."  (emphasis mine)  That's an intriguing thought--that perhaps the Moon really does wobble a bit, and doesn't show us exactly the same face at all times.  

From here, a search for: 

     [ libration ] 

leads to all manner of useful results.  (It's one of those rare words that seems to have no other meaning, but just the Moon-related one.) 

Here's a wonderful YouTube video from NASA showing what libration actually is, the "rolling" of the Moon in the night sky, exposing and hiding different parts of the Moon throughout the month.  This is why my sketches sometimes had significant craters in slightly different places on the Moon's surface.  


This is such a beautiful video, it's worth clicking on the YouTube logo (in the lower right) and watching this at full resolution.  It makes the rocking and rolling motion really obvious. The Moon ends up rolling enough in its orbit that 59% of the total surface area is shown to the Earth during the month.  


Search Lessons 


I take note of 3 things in this week's discussion.  

1. Long queries sometimes work quite well, especially for complex concepts.  All of the queries that worked well for this Challenge ended up having a fair number of words in them.  The Challenge concept was fairly complex (having to do with the Moon, the choice of landing sites, and the earth-facing side of the Moon), so it's not a surprise that we need a fairly long query to get to the right results.  Since this was a complex Challenge, I was prepared to do many alternatives to my original query, but it turned out that the Quora forum discussion was reachable by many different queries.  

2. QA sites are not always low quality!  I subscribe to the Quora posts and get to see the original questions as they fly by.  They are not necessarily deep or well-thought-out questions.  But, on specific topics, the discussion can be very rich and deep.  This one (why NASA landed on the earth-side of the Moon) was especially good.  Don't skip over the QA results, but check them out (and, as always, double-check--second source anything you learn from them).   

3. Searching for official government documentation about a process (by using a site: restriction) can be a great thing. I was impressed by Debra and Anne's strategy of searching for an original process-describing document.  I should have known that NASA (of all organizations in the world) would have published such a thing.  They found it with a brilliant search strategy (to wit, realizing that such a document might exist and then using site:.gov to search the US government's repository).   



Search on, in the spirit of the Apollo missions!  

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Update: More about the Farallons -- "What IS that below?"

A while ago we had a... 

post about whether or not one could see the Farallon Islands from the shore (they're 27 miles to the west off the coast from San Francisco)... 

We answered that yes, you could see them, but your eyes would have to be 489 feet in the air. 

And that's true. 

...HOWEVER... 

It turns out that this is the height you'd need to be to see the islands at sea level.  

In other words, if you wanted to look at the waves crashing on the shores of the Farallons, you'd need to be 489 feet up.  That was what we calculated, and it's still correct.  

It just so happened that I went to San Francisco a week ago, and I went to check this out.

Surprise!  I learned something.  

The Farallons are mountainous islands; they stick up out of the water by quite a bit!  Our calculations didn't take that into account! 

In particular, Southeast Farallon Island (SEFI) is the largest island, with an area of 95.79 acres or (0.14970 square miles or 0.3877 square km).  The island is pyramidal in shape and 357 feet (109 m) high.  In the middle, Seal Rock (Saddle Rock), is around 80 feet (24 m) high, while Aulone Island and smaller Great Arch Rock (Arch Rock) are immediately north of the northern tip of SEFI, and are 350 feet (110 m) in height.  

From my car in the parking lot at Sutro Baths, around 250 feet (76 meters) high, I took the following photo.  



I was happily surprised to see the Farallons on the horizon.  Fantastic!  

Here's a zoom on this image: 


As you can see, SEFI is clearly visible, as are Aulone Island and the Great Arch Rock (which blur together in this image).  You can barely see a ripple of the islands between them.  Here's the satellite image from Google Maps.

The Farallons, seen in satellite view on Google Maps.

And here's the 3D view on Google Maps, as seen from the parking lot (very near where I was standing).  



I have to admit being a bit surprised.  Yes, they're clearly visible, but I didn't think they would be visible from the parking lot--it's only 250 feet up. 

But I'd forgotten that the calculation we made was to the island at sea level, and not to the top (or middle) of the island.  


Search Lessons 


This is yet another reminder that: 

A. It's really worth checking ground truth every so often.  Because...  
B. You find out more about what the question REALLY is all about, and not just what you might think it is.   
 I learned something really useful here.  When you're making basic geometrical calculations, it's handy to really look at your diagram to see if it represents what you think it does.

Remember the diagram? 

Here's the original diagram: 



If I would have looked at my own diagram, I would have realized that I was calculating the angle to the tangent.  The reality is more like this: 

When I took the photo, I was only at 250 feet high... but the islands stand another 375 feet high out of the water!  

I will leave the calculation of how much of the island you can see to the interested reader.  (It's not hard, given what's in the earlier post.)  

As your grade school math teacher probably told you:  "Check your work!"  

She was right.  

Happy to find an error (and correct it)! 

Searching on... 


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

SearchResearch Challenge (1/4/17): The phases (and more!) of the moon

On January 1st, the moon was glorious on the horizon... 

... there it was... a beautiful slender crescent that hung in the western night sky just after sunset.  


Not my photo, but very similar to what I saw on Jan 1, 2017. P/C NASA

I spent a bit of time in rapt contemplation, and then started wondering... 

The US sent six missions to the moon (Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17).  And I remember reading the location of each landing, and then looking at the moon to locate exactly where the landers were located. Once upon a time, I knew the major craters of the Moon very well--I knew their shapes and locations like the back of my hand.  


Apollo 11 astronaut and foot pad of the lander.  P/C NASA


We all know that the Moon is a big sphere.  But it didn't occur to me until just now that the landings all just happened to be on a part of the Moon where I could see them?  Was this just clever publicity and mission planning to make their landing spots visible to the public?  

Once you get curious about something, it's hard to stop.  This line of thinking leads me to our Challenges for the beginning of 2017.  Can you figure them out? 


1. If you look at a map of the Apollo landing sites, they're all visible from Earth--none are on the back side (that is, the side of the moon that faces away from the Earth).  Why were all of the landing sites on THIS side?  (You'd think the back side would have been more interesting. Why didn't we go to the back side?
2. Every so often I'd sketch out the moon as I saw it in the night sky.  Once, when I was looking at several of my sketches together, I noticed that some of the craters on the Moon's edge seemed to be in slightly different places. Huh? I know that the Moon always has the same face pointed to us, but when I looked at my sketches, it would seem that it's not always exactly the same face--especially near the edge. Why would the Moon's face be slightly different during different times of the lunar month? Is it always showing us exactly the same face at all times?  

Both of these questions require a bit of thinking (rather than just search skills).  You'll need to do a bit of research and critical thinking to get to the answers.  

Can you answer these Challenges about the Moon?  

Search on, in the spirit of the Apollo missions!  



Monday, January 2, 2017

Answer: A few Natural History Challenges (ears, embryonic nutrition, and virgin births)

SearchResearch is often a process...  

You start with an observation--maybe you notice that something doesn't quite fit, or maybe there's a missing bit, or a strange misalignment.  

I often write these observations in my notes, and when I have a bit of time (usually on Sunday morning before the sun comes up), I try to find answers.  Some of those notes are questions that I've read about, or small curiosities that have occurred to me as I read.  I try to frame those curiosities as questions, most of which I spent at least few minutes trying to answer.  (This is a great meta-learning strategy: As Richard Feynman pointed out in his description of his learning method, IF you can write your notes as though you were going to teach someone this concept, you'll almost certainly learn it yourself.)  

These Challenges spring straight from my notes, starting with a curious event that happened one morning.  As I walked outside to pick up the newspaper one chilly morning, a flock (or a murder) of crows was hanging around in the front yard tree. I tossed the paper up close to the house, and when it landed, it just happened to make a loud noise, startling the crows into flight. As once flew past me I happened to notice that I didn't know how they heard the noise. "Crow's ears..where?" is what I wrote in my notes.  And hence... 



1. We see birds all of the time, and I know they can hear, but I can't help but wonder: Where are their ears?  What does the ear of an owl or crow look like?  
This isn't a hard Challenge... but it's a surprise to learn what a crow or owl ear looks like.  

     [ crow ear ] 

I happened to see the ScienceAlert article as the very first hit.  ("This is what a crow's ear looks like, and it's freaking us out.")  

It turns out that while they do lack external ears ("pinnae"), crows (and all other birds) have a hole in the side of their head that opens up to the outside world.  This photo is from the ScienceAlert article (which is a frame-grab from the video of someone brushing aside the feathers to expose the crow's ear).  
P/C ScienceAlert (originally from mike_pants/reddit) 

If you do the same search for an owl's ear, you'll find it's very similar: 

The ear of a Northern Saw-Whet owl. P/C Jim McCormac. (He has even more remarkable owl anatomy photos on his site.) 

Bird ears are sometimes easily visible, such as on birds that have no head feathers.  My favorite (for its elegance in flight and ubiquity in California) is the turkey vulture.  Here it's easy to see their ears: 


And unlike mammals, the internal anatomy of bird ears is relatively simple, with only a single bone (the collum) connecting the ear drum (tympanum) to the cochlea.  

A sketch of the internal anatomy of the crow's inner ear, showing the single bone
connecting the eardrum to the cochlea.
P/C Watcher, who has a wonderful post about bird hearing.  
And as Ramón pointed out, some owls have Ear tufts.. and they are not ears

[owl ear location]

The ears are located at the sides of the head, behind the eyes, and are covered by the feathers of the facial disc. The "Ear Tufts" visible on some species are not ears at all, but simply display feathers.

2.  As you know, mammal embryos depend on a placenta for nutrition via their mother until birth. Egg-laying animals provide a yolk for their embryos for feeding until hatching.  But I've heard about a few other ways in which some animal embryos get nutrition while still in utero that's from a surprising source.  What are three other strategies for embryos to get nutrients while still in their mother's uterus?   
To start this search, I did the search: 

      [strategies for embryo nutrition without placenta ] 

which leads to a number of fascinating sources, including an article on tiger sharks where the embryo grows in a uterus that's filled with a nutritious fluid, but with pups that do not have a placental connection (and an egg yolk that is too small to let them grow to maturity).  This strategy for feeding embryos is generally called matrophagy (feeding from the mother). 

Their experiment demonstrated that this liquid, which they have termed, embryotrophe (literally “embryo food”) is the major source of nutrition for tiger shark embryos. The weight gains they found for the fertilized eggs as they grew into full-term embryos, was as high as 2119%.

Another article in that SERP tells us that Mammals are not the only animals to feed embryo during gestation

Much to my surprise, this article tells us that: 
"By comparing the examples of matrotrophy with the placement of species on the DNA-based tree of life, the authors propose that matrotrophy has evolved independently in 140 or more different animal lineages, and is often associated with live birth. According to the study, previous work scattered through the specialized scientific literature had talked about matrotrophy in many invertebrate groups, but it had never been appreciated just how common it might be, and how frequently it had evolved. There are more species of flatworms that employ mother-feeding than there are species of mammals!"  
And it goes on to tell us about cannibalism of sibling eggs or other embryos in the uterus for tiger sharks.   

This was a bit of a surprise.  To get more detail on this, I did a search for: 

     [  sibling egg eating in utero ] 

This lead me to a Smithsonian Magazine article about in utero egg-eating (and in utero cannibalism)

When an embryo eats eggs to grow, that's called oophagy. I also learned the word adelphophagy (literally, eating your brother), both of which are handy terms to know.  Doing a search for: 

     [ oophagy adelphophagy ] 

leads to the book:  The Physiology of Developing Fish: Viviparity and Posthatching Juveniles (Hoar & Randall, 1988), which tells us more about in utero cannibalism (dates! weights! times!) than you might ever want to know.  Fascinating reading.  (And a YouTube video, should you want to see tiger shark embryos being consumed by their larger siblings...)  

Bottom line: the three in utero nutrition strategies I found are: 

1. oophagy - eating other eggs produced by the mother
2. adelphophagy - eating other sibling embryos
3. matrophagy - producing a nutritious fluid that the embryos ingest

3. Speaking of giving birth, I read that virgin births are fairly common in certain kinds of animals.  Can you find which vertebrates are able to give birth without having to bother with all of the process of finding and joining with a mate?  
The obvious query: 

     [ virgin birth in animals ] 

leads to a wealth of results... and a specific term to use in additional searches: parthogensis.  It's easy to find 20 species of snakes, Komodo Dragons, domestic chickens, sawfish, sharks, and many kinds of lizards.  These virgin (parthogenic) births can produce fertile offspring. 

And, most surprising of all, some lizard species (e.g. Aspidoscelis genus of whiptail lizards) seem to be all female.. meaning that for these lizards, males are simply so much excess baggage.

So not only does virgin birth happen, it's fairly common!    



... and it's easy to find many species that do so.  

Search on into the New Year!  
 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

SearchResearch Challenge (12/28/16): A few Natural History Challenges (ears, embryonic nutrition, and virgin births)


As I read, I take notes. 

I take so many notes that by the end of the year, I have a few hundred pages of them.  

Some of those notes are questions that I've read about, or small curiosities that have occurred to me as I read.  I try to frame those curiosities as questions, most of which I spent at least few minutes trying to answer.  (This is a great meta-reading strategy: As you read, ask questions of yourself to test your understanding.)  

To celebrate the last SearchResearch Challenge of 2016, I've pulled together a few of the questions I had written down in my notes during the year.  I was able to answer these fairly quickly, so this is more of a fun Challenge than a difficult one, but I hope you'll enjoy these Challenges (and the sometimes strikingly strange answers to these questions)... 


1. We see birds all of the time, and I know they can hear, but I can't help but wonder: Where are their ears?  What does the ear of an owl or crow look like?   
2.  As you know, mammal embryos depend on a placenta for nutrition via their mother until birth. Egg-laying animals provide a yolk for their embryos for feeding until hatching.  But I've heard about a few other ways in which some animal embryos get nutrition while still in utero that's from a surprising source.  What are three other strategies for embryos to get nutrients while still in their mother's uterus?   
3. Speaking of giving birth, I read that virgin births are fairly common in certain kinds of animals.  Can you find which vertebrates are able to give birth without having to bother with all of the process of finding and joining with a mate?  

Let us know what you find and how you found it.  (I'll caution you ahead of time that these are pretty interesting Challenges.  I spent waaaay too much time reading into the finer aspects of biology.  This is fascinating stuff!) 

As always, if you don't have time to do all three, just let us know what you found on just one.  Collectively, we'll all learn from everyone else's search process and results.  

Search on! 




Monday, December 26, 2016

Answer: Searching for the place where things should be

 
Where should things go?


Ann Folsom wrote in asking how to find a good (best?) place for your collection of possibly historically useful artifacts.  I condensed her questions in these two:  

1.  How do you find the "best" place for your collection of artifacts from another time?  Is there a strategy to match your collection with an interested buyer / acquirer?   That is, how would you find a good home for your collection?  


2.  If you're searching for archival materials to acquire, what's a good strategy for finding them?  (As an example, what's the best way to find archival piano rolls to acquire? How about old oak library card catalogs?)
  

Several Regular Readers wrote in with great advice which I condense below (with a couple of my own observations).   

Judith pointed out that nearly every place has a local historical society. A quick search for your town or county's name will often reveal organizations that you didn't know about.  Check in with them.  Here's an example for my town: 

     [ Palo Alto historical society ] 


This quick search shows me that there are 4 organizations that might well be interested in your collection.  

Remember to also check in with your local library. Many libraries have local archive collections.  If you've got old photos or newspapers, be sure to check with them.  

As Deb and Anne pointed out, you might want to check places that have a national scope if your collection might be of broader interest.  Their story of a friend taking audio tapes of NPR broadcasts to the Library of Congress (for their Archive of American Broadcasting) is a great story.  

They also point out that you might want to search for different destinations depending on the media format.  Almost every place will take photos, but not every place wants (or can handle) audio tapes, 16 mm film, 78 RPM records, laser disks, or (zounds!) piano rolls.  Be sure to do a query like this one: 

     [ archive recorded sound ]    or...    [ archive piano rolls ] 

Consider libraries, archives, museums, historical societies...and in particular, ones that have the ability to handle the kind of media object you have.  For instance, near to where I live the USGS has a wonderful map library in Menlo Park with a dedicated page for donations of old maps and land-use images.  

Jon reminds us that searching for a generalization of the topic is a great search strategy.  He didn't just search for "piano roll" but for a more general term, "player piano."  Don't get locked into a particular term when doing your searches.  

But he also correctly cautions that sometimes it really is tough to find anyone interested in your collection. Don't take it personally if you can't find a library to accept your fantastic collection of Victorian-era antimacassars.  (But consider searching for alternate generalizations of the key idea, such as [ Victorian era furniture collection ] 

Steve also tells us that while talking to a local historical society is a great idea, spend some time looking for a professional archivist:  many universities and larger colleges have at least one (usually hiding in the library).  

Many libraries have excellent collections of things you might not expect.  For instance, the UCSB library has a famous collection of cylinder recordings, and an deep collection of digitized records -- the detailed metadata can make for fun searching of songs.  (My favorite: American Cakewalk, played on the accordion in 1906.)  


Lastly, don't forget that great frictionless supply/demand service, eBay.  If you can find the items in your collection there, you've got a good sense for (a) whether anyone else finds it interesting, and (b) other terms to describe your object. 

Here's a look at eBay's suggestions list: 




They have an entire category of "Vintage Musical Instruments" (which might be a handy search term as you look for museums and libraries), as well as other terms you might not know.  

I learned that  "QRS," "Ampico," and "Duo-Art" are companies that used to make piano rolls.  I also see the term "player piano," which is the generalization that Jon found!  


Search Lessons


Let me summarize these in a quick list: 

1. Search for local libraries, historical societies, and museums. Search for these at both city and county levels (and if your collection is great, at state or national levels). 

2. Search for places that specialize in your particular object.  Not every place can handle every kind of thing.  If you've got an audio recording or old computer, search for institutions that specialize in that kind of thing. 

3. Seek out your local librarian and/or archivist.  They often have lots of connections that are difficult to find through regular web search.  

4. Look for archivist mailing lists that might connect you with the larger set of interested people.  For instance, Archivists.org has a number of private and public mailing lists.  Check them out as well.  

5.  Remember the amazingness of eBay.  That's a quick reality check for the value of your collection.  It can also be a source of ideas about other search terms and places where you could potentially sell your collection.  (Or buy even more!)  


Search on! 




Wednesday, December 21, 2016

SearchResearch Challenge (Dec 21, 2016): Searching for the place where things should be


Where should things go? 



Regular Reader Ann Folsom wrote in with a great question that I wanted to share as a SearchResearch Challenge, especially at this holiday time of the year.  

Her excellent question:  
Some of us are in the position of downsizing or finding out what's in those trunks in the attic, learning what a family member treasured enough to put away. For instance, I recently heard of a woman unable to find a buyer for her player piano and its 150 piano rolls.  In another case, a family member passed away, leaving an enormous collection of lovely, varied, interesting teacups.
What happens to family photo albums from 80-90 years ago? The clothing and backgrounds are interesting, and who knows what might be of historic interest to future researchers?  
Likewise, families often have magazine and comic book collections, stamp and coin collections, not to mention electronic collections (outdated computers, with instruction manuals and floppy disks of various types)
I've even seen collections of mounted trophy heads,  artwork from painters, journals and magazines in various fields, and personal libraries of books.  Where should they go?   I'm guessing that somewhere out there, somebody would have loved to have the player piano or the piano rolls.  
I have no idea how you'd make the connection. Some tech historian might really welcome the electronic collection of Victor computers, attachments, and disks.

This leads to today's Challenge, which comes in two parts:  

1.  How do you find the "best" place for your collection of artifacts from another time?  Is there a strategy to match your collection with an interested buyer / acquirer?   That is, how would you find a good home for your collection?  

-- and then there's the opposite of that question... 

2.  If you're searching for archival materials to acquire, what's a good strategy for finding them?  (As an example, what's the best way to find archival piano rolls to acquire? How about old oak library card catalogs?)
  

What would your advice be to Ann?  Is there an effective strategy that would match archival artifacts with interested buyers or acquirers?  

Let us know what your advice would be.  How can you give stuff back to the universe after you're done with it (and do it in a way that is beneficial to the world at large)?  And how can you figure out how to acquire the stuff that you're interested in as well.  (While I'm not a big collector, I have been known to acquire the occasional historically interesting postcard.  How does one do that??)  

Who knew there was an amusement park at Fulton at Tenth Avenue in
San Francisco, next to Golden Gate Park known as "Beer Town"?
You can't make this stuff up. Postcards make the past visible.


Search on!