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Happy Hacktoberfest!

  • Posted by: Daniella Snyder
  • Posted Date: October 7, 2019
  • Filed Under: Library News

By Chris Hallberg, Library Technology Developer

Open-source software is an amazing movement in today’s programming environment. By sharing the code behind programs, open-source projects empower online communities to create quality programs that are available for free. These collaborations celebrate transparency and inclusion, improving the landscape of development in many ways. Many of the programs you likely use are developed by open-source communities. The Firefox and Chrome browsers, the Android operating system, and many websites are entirely or use open-source software.

If that sounds appealing to you, there is no better time to dip your feet into open-source development than now. Welcome to Hacktoberfest! Hacktoberfest is a time where the largest repository of open-source software, GitHub, encourages people to try out development and encourages its members and projects to make the barriers of entry as low as possible. Beginner projects are created for practice. Established projects tag issues that are good for new coders with a special Hacktoberfest label. Contribute enough code in the month of October and you will be sent a free shirt!


The shirts are awesome!


So how do you get started? The first thing you have to do is learn a special tool called “version control”. If you’ve ever been working on a paper that requires revisions, you have experience with version control techniques.



What version control tools do is allow you to do is to bookmark changes and stages of progress without making a hundred different files. They also make it easy to go back to previous versions and see the differences between bookmarks. One of the most popular options is called git (hence GitHub).

The most important thing that git allows you to do is to reconcile different changes to the same files. You can “merge” changes from one version into another. This allows multiple people to work on the same files without conflicting with each others’ work. This means that teams and communities can delegate tasks and work on them individually. GitHub gives them a place to host code publically and git allows people to take projects in their own directions (called “forks”).


When someone wants to add their improvements back to the project, they create what’s called a “pull request”. A pull request shows all of the changes that have been made to a project clearly and asks the original owner if they want to include these changes in the project. It’s the center for conversation and progress on GitHub.

Now that I’ve covered the basics, it’s time for you to dive in and make your own pull requests! Creating only four scores you an awesome shirt. Go to the Hacktoberfest website to get started or check out this resource or this interactive tutorial for git to start applying that to your everyday routine.

Chris Hallberg is a web designer and technology developer at Falvey Library, an open-source enthusiast and part-time teacher.

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Explore the Global Middle Ages with Bloomsbury Medieval Studies

By Jutta Seibert, Director of Research Services & Scholarly Engagement

Bloomsbury Medieval Studies, a new and growing academic resource, brings together various types of resources to open up the medieval world in global perspective. It features the new Encyclopedia of the Global Middle Ages, over 150 monographs from highly regarded publishers, study resources curated by major scholars, and selected visual and text sources. New content will be added regularly. Trial access lasts until October 31. Contact Jutta Seibert if you would like to recommend this resource for purchase.



Foto Friday: Falvey First Down

That feeling when you spot a Falvey sticker at the Villanova football game!

Thank you, Nova Nation for reppin’ the library. Good luck to Nova Football as they take on William & Mary at 3:30 p.m. tomorrow! Share your Falvey swag with us on social: Instagram@villanovalibrary  Twitter@FalveyLibrary

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Library.


#TBT: Hoops Mania Saturday, Basketball is Nigh

With Hoops Mania this Saturday, the basketball season will soon be upon us. This photo of Scottie Reynolds comes to you from the 2008 Villanova Yearbook.


Curious Cat: Hoops Mania!

  • Posted by: Nathaniel Haeberle-gosweiler
  • Posted Date: October 3, 2019
  • Filed Under: Library News

This Saturday is Hoops Mania, so we asked students what they were looking forward to seeing this year.

This week’s Curious Cat is brought to you by Allie Reczek, Lindsay Sassion, and Liam Brassington, three of our wonderful undergraduate student workers in the Falvey Memorial Library Communication & Marketing Department. Keep an eye out for them every Thursday, asking students their opinions on a range of subjects and topics. 


Save The Date: Digital Seeds Fall 2019 Events featuring Julia Flanders of Northeastern University

Falvey Memorial Library is very pleased to announce our Digital Seeds speaker for Fall 2019, Julia Flanders of Northeastern University.

When You Think All You Have Is a Hammer, You’re Not Looking Closely Enough at Your Tools: Emerging Research Tactics for Humanities Scholarship

October 31, 2019, 4:00-5:30pm, Falvey 205

The Women Writers Project — a digital research collection focused on early modern women’s writing in English — was designed at a time when digital methods were in their infancy, and has evolved with the field of digital humanities. What kinds of research does such a collection make possible, now that digital methods are maturing and are taking root in humanities departments? What debates animate the ongoing development of collections like this one? How do the politics of digital tools manifest in these research spaces? This presentation will examine the Women Writers Project and the social and technical systems that support it, and also discuss the starting points and design agendas for institutions and scholars seeking to establish new digital scholarship programs. Light refreshments will be provided. Free and open to the public.

Exploring Digital Humanities Pedagogy Workshop

November 1, 2019, 12:00-1:30pm, Falvey 205

This workshop will explore tools and strategies for digital humanities pedagogy that meet three challenging criteria: Do they offer genuinely illuminating engagement? Are they within our capacities as busy scholars and teachers? Can our institution support us in using them? We’ll discuss and experiment with some concrete examples, and share challenges and experiences. Open to Villanova faculty and graduate students. To sign up for this workshop, please visit

Julia Flanders is a Professor of the Practice in the Department of English and the Director of the Digital Scholarship Group in the Northeastern University Library. She also directs the Women Writers Project and serves as editor in chief of Digital Humanities Quarterly, an open-access, peer-reviewed online journal of digital humanities. She has served as chair of the TEI Consortium and as President of the Association for Computers and the Humanities. Her research interests focus on data modeling, textual scholarship, humanities data curation, and the politics of digital scholarly work.

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.



Falvey’s Fall Bucket List

I’m Daniella Snyder, a second-year graduate student at Villanova University, and your ‘Cat in Falvey Library’s Stacks. I’ll be posting about academics–from research to study habits and everything in between–and how Falvey Library can play a large role in your success here on campus!

Happy fall, Wildcats!

In the midst of Halloween, midterms, and seasonal allergies, autumn can get really busy. However, Falvey wants to make sure you use the Library’s great services and resources to ensure a smooth academic semester. So, we created a “Falvey Fall Bucket List,” complete with some of the Library’s essentials for the new season.

We want you to meet with one of our incredible subject librarians to get research help for that upcoming paper. We also think you should utilize our excellent 24-hour study spaces. Even at 2 AM, we promise there are no scary jack-o’-lanterns, bats, or monsters roaming our halls. You can study alone, with classmates, or with friends during all hours of the day for those terrifying midterm exams.

You can get in the fall season spirit with pumpkin spice coffees and muffins in Holy Grounds. We even think you should get #spooky by venturing into the hallowed halls of Falvey West. Did you know there are study spaces there, too? You might even find a book or two.

(We swear that it’s not as scary down there as you think it is!)

If you complete any of the tasks on the Falvey Fall Bucket List, awesome! Take a picture and post it on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. Tag the library’s account and use the hashtag #FalveyFallBucketList.

Don’t want to post it? That’s cool, too. Follow us on one of our social media platforms and send us the picture.

For every item on the bucket list you complete, you’ll be entered in to win a $20 gift card to the bookstore!

Good luck!

Daniella Snyder Headshot

Daniella Snyder, our Graduate Assistant in the Communication & Marketing Department, loves fall. She’s most excited for her fall break road trip to Acadia National Park in Maine.

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BCC Research Library Database Trial Available Until Friday

From Sept. 30-Oct. 4, Villanova students and faculty have access to the BCC Research Library, a database with thousands of reports, covering the latest news, data, and market forecasting in the following areas:

  • Life Sciences (Medical Devices, Surgical, Cell Bio, Pharmaceuticals, Health Maintenance);
  • Environment and Sustainability (Water Membrane/Separations, Fuel Cell/Battery, Energy, Manufacturing);
  • Commerce (Finance, Startup Venture Capital, IT);
  • Sensors (Engineering, Photonics, Safety/Security, Instruments).

To access the trial from databases A-Z, select member login in the top right corner and IP authenticate.


Deus Vult: The Dark Templar Imagery and Language of the Modern Neo-Nazi and Alt-Right Movements.

By Robert LeBlanc

Since the Spring 2019 semester, I have seen three young men on or near campus wearing t-shirts sporting the words “Deus Vult” (“God Wills”) or the image of the Knights Templar cross. I have no way of knowing if these were Villanovans or not, but the idea that students at a Catholic University might be sporting Knights Templar iconography out of a misguided or uninformed sense of pride is not beyond the realm of possibility.

In order to clarify the current meaning of these words and symbols, I decided to pen this brief summary of the use of these signifiers as code for a growing lexicon of alt-right and neo-nazi propaganda.

 cross-out templar cross

Origins of Hate

Burgeoning online hate communities have been developing a new symbolic language in recent years. Seemingly innocuous words and images such as milk (a symbol of racial purity), the upright OK symbol (and abstraction of the initials for White Power), Pepe the frog, and a host of other false symbols were originally adopted by alt-right “trolls” to identify each other or incite outrage and paranoia from the left. Unfortunately, many of these false symbols have been adopted by legitimate racist, misogynistic, nationalistic, and anti-LGBT groups.

However, a handful of hateful symbols were not created by online provocateurs. The symbology and mottos of the medieval order of the Knights Templar have been used by racist organizations for decades. The order of the Knights Templar was a militaristic quasi-religious organization formed between the first and second crusades (c. 1119) and tasked with shepherding European pilgrims to the recently “liberated” holy lands. It is this concept of “liberation at the end of the sword” in the name of God (hence “Deus Vult” or “God Wills”) resulting in the mass slaughter of entire populations of Muslims and Jews that appeals to modern neo-nazi and far-right groups who publicly revile middle eastern culture and religion.

Several esoteric societies of the late 19th and early 20th centuries also utilized these symbols and mottos, notably the openly racist Order of the New Templars and the Thule Society, which formed the underlying racist mystical doctrine of the Nazi party. In recent years, neo-Nazi nationalist groups have co-opted these same symbols to support their xenophobic, racist, anti-Islamic, and anti-Semitic agendas. “Deus Vult” is emblazoned on alt-right parade banners and chanted at rallies. The Templar Cross in either its traditional red cross on a white field or its inverse, white on red, is a popular symbol used in lieu of swastikas, the double SS symbol of the Nazi Gestapo, or the Norse Othala rune.  Even though the link between Templars and extreme anti-Islamic violence is not accurate—most scholars agree that Templars were far more religiously tolerant than your average crusader—far right extremists are still attracted to the false ideology of violence and cultural extermination.

Freedom of speech on our campus and in our community is very important. But this goes beyond a MAGA hat or AOC t-shirt. These images and words are actively being used by neo-Nazi and extremist hate groups to incite fear and violence toward other cultures and religions. Regardless of their original meaning or intent, these words and symbols in their current context have no place at an institution devoted to diversity, inclusion, and acceptance.

Now, more than ever, it is important for all our community members to be aware of the meaning behind the symbols they openly display and the impact it has on others, both on and off campus.

Identifying the Symbol

The Templar cross versions most often used by hate groups:

templar cross








(Credit: Wikipedia Commons)

For more information, please consider these scholastic sources:

Relevant News articles:

For more information or comments, please contact First-year Experience librarian Rob LeBlanc at


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“Orlando” is a must-see!

  • Posted by: Daniella Snyder
  • Posted Date: September 30, 2019
  • Filed Under: Library News

As a graduate assistant in Falvey, I’ve had the ability to see every theatrical production on Villanova Theatre’s stage for the last year. And in the past year, I’ve traveled from a southern church basement to a neighbor’s living room, to a Budapest “parfumerie.” I’ve journeyed the 1800’s and I’ve remained in present day. I’ve seen magic tricks and optical illusions. I’ve even seen a moving stage.

But Orlando?

Orlando took me everywhere, over the course of 300 years, in one single production.

Photo courtesy of Kimberly Reilly.

Using Woolf’s 1928 novel as inspiration for a modern look at identity, gender and desire, playwright Sarah Ruhl explores the multitude of possibilities contained within every human being. This timely, textured play examines the ways in which gender and identity have been rediscovered, challenged and transformed over the last decade. Thus, Orlando travels time as he changes genders, accompanied by a gender-bending cast who travels time alongside him.

Given this information, director James Ijames and the cast of Orlando did not have an easy show to put together. Ijames says that playwright Sarah Ruhl “demands the impossible of the people working on her plays.”

Yet, Ijames, the cast, and crew made the impossible, possible. In fact, not only did they make it possible…they made it magical.

Photo courtesy of Kimberly Reilly.

Set Designer Parris Bradley created an open playing area that gave the actors access to old furniture, strewn-about set pieces, and an assortment of objects one might naturally find in a theatre, which allowed the cast to travel time and periods smoothly. Props Designer Sharri Jerue helped make a world where sheets of paper are banquet tables and antique trunks become Russian ships. Costume Designer Janus Stefanowicz took these ideas even further by incorporating evocative, interchangeable costume pieces that cast members quickly attach and remove, often right before our very eyes.

Ultimately, Orlando was an absolutely engrossing, fast-paced, and laugh-out-loud funny show that I could watch a second (and probably a third) time.
Don’t miss out: buy your Orlando tickets here.

Daniella Snyder Headshot

Ever since Daniella Snyder, Graduate Assistant in the Communication & Marketing Department in Falvey Library, took a Virginia Woolf graduate seminar in the English department, her family and friends won’t stop buying her Virginia Woolf-themed gifts. She currently has a deck of Woolf-themed playing cards, a magnet, and even a candle.


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Last Modified: September 30, 2019