Libraries, the letter “B,” the number “13,” and my atrocious handwriting

11Sep06

In order to even begin to comprehend the impenetrable lecture notes for my microeconomics class, I needed to check out a few books as external references (seriously, I’ve cycled through at least five books and sets of online lecture notes). Unfortunately, me not being on top of things and all, said books were already long gone from my school’s library. Enter the University of Pittsburgh. I can check out books from their library (I just waltzed right in, got a temporary ID card, and proceeded to check out all of the good economics literature available).

It’s been a few years since I’ve had to use a physical library. Most of what I need is availalbe through Google or online journal services. So after a brief period of reacquantance with the Library of Congress classification system, and a trial-by-fire-and-many-sets-of-stairs introduction to the layout of the library, I finally figured out how to locate the books I needed. But as I searched for a book beginning with H1351.something I realized that there are no H13’s in the Library of Congress system. Hmm, I thought. Must be HI351. Nope, no HI’s either. Turns out I wrote HB… very sloppily. Given that most of what I need to know is apparently going to take the form of indexed matrices (I_jk, for example), this inscrutable handwriting doesn’t bode well for me.

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