Author Archive

Dark and Twisted Reads for Teens

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

IMG_3653Do you like books that send shivers down your spine? Maybe you like your books with some odd twists. If so, the Dark and Twisted booklist should provide the thrills you’re looking for.

Some staff favorites from the list include Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs and Rick Yancey’s The Monstrumologist. One staff member even called The Monstrumoligistthe grossest book I’ve ever read.” Both are sure to keep you up at night.

 


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Grandville Reads! Photo Contest

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

Calling all amateur photographers.  Here’s your chance to shine! The Grandville Branch of KDL is looking for photos of people of all ages reading somewhere in Grandville.  You could take pictures of folks reading at the library, the schools, parks, or any place you would like in Grandville. 

The photography contest is part of our Grandville Reads! One Book One Community program.  Local professional photographers will choose 5 winners who will be eligible to win gift certificates to local restaurants. 

You can find the entry form with guidelines at the Grandville Branch or online


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Using Jing to Simplify Tasks

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

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Last week I learned about Jing, a free online software you can use to add images to blogs, narrate vacation photos, or take a 5-minute video of what you are doing on screen.  To quote the website, “it’s the fastest way to show what’s on your screen to others.”  For instance, one of the success stories on the website is about a librarian using Jing to teach students how to use the catalog. She created a short video as she moused around the screen showing students where to click and what to type where on the catalog.  This way she could walk around the room and help students use the catalog while they were watching the video. 

If you would like to use Jing to create videos with a webcam, Jing Pro can be purchased for $14.95 a year. 


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Etsy

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

etsy.gifIf you fall into the category of people who like to either buy or sell crafts, this is the website for you.  Etsy features several different categories of crafts, including arts, woodworking, housewares, children’s clothing, and many, many more.  Also, if you are looking to support your local economy, you can look up local vendors by typing in your location. 

Or if you are a crafty person, you can easily sell your crafts.  You don’t have to be a computer whiz to post your items on Etsy. You do have to be willing to pay 20 cents to list each item for 4 months, and you will pay a 3.5% transaction fee when your item sells. 

There’s even a cool blog listing sale information and even recipes. 

I personally just love looking at all the great, handmade items.  My only warning is that once you start looking you may find you are spending hours on this site.  I only wish I were crafty.


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Computer Tips on KDL Wiki

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

Have you visited the Computer Basics Wiki on the KDL webpage?  It’s a great resource for the beginning computer user.  It includes links to websites where people can learn how to type, use a mouse, and generally become more familiar with using a computer.  Recently links to some helpful computer tips have been added.  The tips include information on how to attach a file in email, how to burn data or music to a CD, and how to cut, copy and paste.  Although this information may seem quite basic, we can all remember a time when we didn’t know how to do these things.  So please feel free to share these tips with those who may need them.


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The Internet Librarian

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

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Using a search engine for information can be overwhelming. Consider that when I searched for “flowers of Michigan” on Google, it brought up 1,990,000 results.  What can be most frustrating is that the sites are not reviewed or truly sorted.  So you might end up with 3 websites with the information you want after digging through several pages.  Next time this happens, you may want to try searching for information using findingDulcinea, self-proclaimed “librarian of the Internet.” 

The site includes web guides for topics ranging from autos to travel.  Each guide is then broken down into topics, where you can find the websites selected by findingDulcinea Internet librarians.  For instance, if you select the career topic, then choose the “how to find a job” category, you can locate a list of websites for job hunting. 

The other two main categories of the site are titled Beyond the Headlines and Netcetera.  These are both great ways to read the news in a much more in-depth fashion.

The site also has it’s own search engine called SweetSearch.  It’s a great way to search for a topic without getting lots of sites by paid advertisers. 

I’m not suggesting you give up your favorite search engine, but I would definitely suggest giving this a try.


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Fun with Blogs

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

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Blogs are everywhere. They even played a role in the last Presidential Election.  But what you may not know is that it’s extremely easy to create your own blog.  You can talk about topics ranging from parenting, cooking, politics, etc, and you can even write a blog about writing blogs.  There are easy to use websites like Blogger and WordPress to help get you started. You create an account, and use the different tools available to set up your background, and add photos and text. 

There is even an award for the best Blog.  Nominations are being accepted right now for the 2009 Bloggies Weblogs Awards.  So I guess that leads us to the most  important question.  What’s your favorite blog? 


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Family Websites

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Do you have a hard time keeping in touch with out of state relatives (or even in-state relatives)?  Family websites can be a great way to keep in touch.  There are many services that will host your family website for free or for a small fee.  Some of the hosting sites out there include MyFamily, FamilyLobby, TheFamilyPost and numerous others. I located these by using the search term “family websites” in Google.  These sites offer sections where family members can post photos, videos, and recipes.  My family even had a very lively political debate this fall via our family website.  I have found it to be a great way to connect, and for those who aren’t web savy enough to create their own blog, this is very easy.  And it’s multigenerational: the older generation in my family post just as much as the younger folks. It’s great to see the photos of weddings, babies, and vacations we would all miss because we live so far from each other.  So if you would like to find an easy way to connect with out of town relatives, I would recommend taking a look at what these sites have to offer. Do a little research to find the site that best fits the needs of your family, and reconnect.


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Pandora Radio

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

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 Do you get sick of listening to the radio, when you only like about half the songs that are played? On Pandora Radio you can create your own group of distinct radio stations based on artists, songs, or types of music you like. Love the White Stripes? You can have a radio station that plays their music as well as the music of other similar artists.  While it isn’t always perfectly accurate, it does give you the option to give each song choice a thumbs up or thumbs down. This way you can narrow down the station to only include artists or songs you really like.

On each song there is also a menu button. If you select this you can choose the options to not play this song again for a month, ask why this song was selected, move the song to another station, bookmark the song, or buy the album the song is on.  So if I thought the song Heart Shaped Box by Nirvana didn’t belong in my White Stripes radio station, I could move it to another station, or create a seperate Nirvana station. 

 It’s very easy to sign up for a Pandora account, and it’s lots of fun to create your own great radio station.


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Google Chrome: A New Browser

Monday, September 29th, 2008

The folks at Google have come up with a new open source browser called Google Chrome.  It’s your basic web browser, but with some nice additions. Like Mozilla, it makes use of tabs. But you can actually move the tabs around on your screen, so that you can have more than one tab open at a time.  And what’s even better is that if one tab crashes, you only lose the one tab, not everything you have been working on.  

Download the beta version now and you can help Google test it out.

Because the process is pretty complex, Google has created a booklet in comic form so you can learn more about Chrome.  You can also watch a video to learn more.

  httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGmO7Oximw8


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