KDL Blog ‘Research & Computer Tips’ Category

Free Computer Classes for Adults

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

Spring 2015 Computer Class BrochureWhether you’re a computer novice or looking to update your skills, KDL’s free computer classes can help you learn something new! Registration opens today for our March classes:

  • Computer Basics: Mousing and More!
  • Computer Basics: Where’s My Stuff?
  • Computer Basics: Windows 8 — Using It and Loving It!
    (B.Y.O. Laptop)
  • Digital Photos: Online Photo Editing Fun
  • Gadgets: B.Y.O. eReader & Tablet Users Group
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Internet: Email Basics
  • Internet: Facebook Basics
  • Internet: Getting Started on Craigslist
  • Internet: Google — More Than Just a Search Engine
  • Internet: Internet Basics and More
  • Internet: Online Security
  • Microsoft Excel Basics I & II
  • Microsoft PowerPoint Basics
  • Microsoft Word Basics I, II & III
  • Speak to a Geek (pre-registration not required)

For class descriptions and schedule, please see our brochure or search our events calendar.

Unless otherwise noted, pre-registration is required and will begin the month before the scheduled classes on the first Monday of each month for KDL cardholders and the second Monday for non-KDL cardholders (if space is still available):

  • March classes: Registration begins Monday, February 2 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, February 9 for non-KDL cardholders)
  • April classes: Registration begins Monday, March 2 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, March 9 for non-KDL cardholders)
  • May classes: Registration begins Monday, April 6 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, April 13 for non-KDL cardholders)

To register, please call 616-784-2007.


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Playing with Pinterest

Monday, January 26th, 2015

Pinterest, for the uninitiated, is like a virtual bulletin board.  When you find something online that you want to save, you can “pin” it and save it for later.  As a social media tool, it allows you to visually discover, collect, share and store pictures and websites that interest you.  Best of all, you can share your “pins” with your friends, and collect ideas from their boards.

I admit, I find myself browsing Pinterest quite often.  More than once I’ve looked up from my computer and realized that I had spent two hours staring at pins of luxurious vacation places I could never afford.  But after a while, I decided to focus on using Pinterest with a purpose–not just to plan imaginary trips.

When I started to browse with a purpose in mind, I found Pinterest helped me discover ideas for educating and entertaining my children.  Suddenly, instead of looking for faraway places to vacation, I was searching for DIY activities for my toddler.  I found a way to construct my own geoboard.  I followed a collection of great read-alouds that I knew my children would all enjoy.  There were early literacy activities to help my preschooler, and great recipes to feed my family.

DIY Geoboard

DIY Geoboard

My virtual bulletin board was growing, my kids were busy creating with shapes and colors, and dinner was in the crockpot!


Follow Kent District Library on Pinterest and engage with our community of ideas.  You’ll be amazed at what you discover.

 


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New ScienceFlix Learning Resource for Kids

Saturday, January 24th, 2015

ScienceFlixWe are pleased to offer a new online resource just for kids — ScienceFlix from children’s publisher Scholastic!

You may already be familiar with two related products from Scholastic: BookFlix, which pairs fictional video storybooks with nonfiction eBooks, and TrueFlix, which uses interactive nonfiction books to help hone literacy skills and build subject-area knowledge. ScienceFlix focuses in on engaging subject-area science, technology and engineering content for students in grades 4-9.

ScienceFlix

Each of the 30 multimedia units are aligned to science curriculum standards and feature:

  • Engaging videos to build background knowledge and introduce vocabulary
  • Articles written at three reading levels to ensure comprehension and build content knowledge
  • Project and experiment ideas
  • News stories with study guides
  • Careers section to inspire budding scientists
  • Multimedia including interactive timelines, slideshows, videos and more
  • Editorially vetted and safe links to websites on related content for further learning

There are also Teacher Resources available, such as lesson plans, project ideas, quizzes, videos and media galleries.

Try it out today!

 


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New Zinio Magazines Available

Friday, January 16th, 2015

Zinio_logo

Our Zinio digital magazine service now has even more of your favorite titles! We’ve added subscriptions to the following new magazines that you can download and enjoy for FREE on your computer or mobile device:

 

Allrecipes Better Homes and Gardens The Economist HGTV Magazine

The New Yorker Parents Vanity Fair Vanity Fair

Click here to view a complete list of all titles offered through Zinio.

 

Happy Downloading!

 


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KDL Branches to Open at Noon Today, Jan.9

Friday, January 9th, 2015

Due to hazardous road conditions, KDL branches with regular morning hours will open at 12:00 PM today. This morning’s storytime programs are cancelled. Please be safe and we hope to see you at KDL this afternoon!


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KDL Closing at 5:00 PM Thursday, Jan. 8

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Due to severe weather and travel conditions, all KDL branches will close at 5:00 PM today (Thursday, January 8). All evening programs are cancelled. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

KDL Logo IEE

 


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New (More!) Branch Hours Start Today!

Monday, January 5th, 2015

KDL High Res
At the request of KDL customers and our municipal partners, and thanks to the generosity of KDL voters, the library will be delivering on our millage promise of offering more convenient hours at all our locations. Starting Monday, January 5, KDL is offering a total of 56.5 more open hours spread across 15 branch locations. The remaining three KDL branches — Alpine, Caledonia and Spencer townships — got additional hours in September. Click here to see new hours as of today.


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Free Computer Classes for Adults

Monday, January 5th, 2015

Winter 2014-2015 Computer Class BrochureWhether you’re a computer novice or looking to update your skills, KDL’s free computer classes can help you learn something new! Registration opens today for our February classes:

  • Computer Basics: Mousing and More!
  • Computer Basics: Where’s My Stuff?
  • Computer Basics: Windows 8 — Using It and Loving It!
    (B.Y.O. Laptop)
  • Computer Basics: Windows 8 — Where’s My Stuff?
    (B.Y.O. Laptop)
  • Digital Photos: Online Photo Sharing, Saving and Ordering
  • Gadgets: B.Y.O. eReader & Tablet Users Group
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Gadgets: B.Y.O. Kindle Users Group
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Gadgets: Gadget Petting Zoo
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Internet: Create Your Own Website or Blog
  • Internet: Email Basics
  • Internet: Getting Started on Craigslist
  • Internet: Google — More Than Just a Search Engine
  • Internet: Internet Basics
  • Internet: Online Security
  • Internet: Pinterest Basics
  • Online Research: Genealogy Research I & II
  • Online Research: Genealogy — FamilySearch.org
  • Microsoft Excel Basics I & II
  • Microsoft Excel: Data Analysis
  • Microsoft Office Workshop
  • Microsoft PowerPoint Basics
  • Microsoft Word Basics I & II
  • Job Seekers: Job & Career Accelerator
  • Career Transitions Workshop: LinkedIn Boot Camp
  • Speak to a Geek (pre-registration not required)

For class descriptions and schedule, please see our brochure or search our events calendar.

Unless otherwise noted, pre-registration is required and will begin the month before the scheduled classes on the first Monday of each month for KDL cardholders and the second Monday for non-KDL cardholders (if space is still available):

  • February classes: Registration begins Monday, January 5 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, January 12 for non-KDL cardholders)

To register, please call 616-784-2007.


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10 New Year’s Tech Resolutions

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

Clean your machine
Perform electronic housekeeping regularly with a PC optimization program such as CCleaner, available both as a free download and a premium tool with more advanced features. Your computer will run faster and be more secure online. Find more info and download links at http://www.piriform.com

De-clutter your desktop
A clear desktop reduces distraction and improves productivity. Remove shortcuts, put files into folders organized in your Documents and delete unused icons. Then upload a new wallpaper for the desktop background.

Update your softwarecalvin-and-hobbes-New-Years-Resolution

Whether it is your Windows OS, Java, Adobe or your anti-virus program, it is critical to keep each updated. Many programs can be configured to update automatically, but some will require manual installation depending on your settings. When in doubt as to the validity of that nagging message popping up on your desktop with an update reminder, use ya search engine to find the company offering the update and check their website for update news.

Install an anti-virus
Simply stated, no computer should go online without anti-virus protection — period. There are so many options ranging from free to affordable (considering the consequences). For comparative info on the major programs available, see the article from PC magazine: http://www.pcmag.com

Achieve zero in-box
Stay sane with an in-box that is empty. Impossible, you say? Not so. With determination and tips from Mashable you can achieve inbox nirvana: http://mashable.com

Delete old accounts
It’s hard to know how many online accounts and services each of us has created by now, but it’s probably somewhere in the neighborhood of “too many.” It would be great to cut the clutter by just deleting the ones you don’t use. But companies don’t make it easy, burying the account deactivation pages from view and requiring a litany of frustrating steps to get there. Check out this website for assistance: http://justdelete.me

Use a password manager
Keepass, a free password manager, can be installed locally on your computer to store passwords, generate new passwords and even easily transfer passwords via drag-n-drop. No more excuses to not use unique, strong and different passwords for each of your accounts.  http://keepass.info

Back it up
Computers don’t last forever, and we don’t realize that until our PC or laptop breaks and we lose some important data. To avoid that, make a habit out of backing up your hard drive manually, or using the many free back-up tools online: http://www.consumerreports.org

Install tracking devices on your gadgets
How often have you lost your keys, misplaced your phone or had your laptop swiped while your back was turned? With advances in GPS, Bluetooth and other technologies, more and more devices that help you find lost or misplaced items are coming to market. For a list of some of the more popular tracker-based solutions, go to http://www.pcmag.com

Disconnect
A Swedish study reported in Forbes Magazine concluded that “Regularly using a computer late at night is associated not only with sleep disorders but also with stress and depressive symptoms in both men and women.” So make the effort to turn your devices off and read a book! http://www.forbes.com

 


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Holiday Closing — New Year’s Day

Monday, December 29th, 2014

Kent District Library will be closed Thursday, January 1 for the New Year’s holiday. In addition, all branches will close at 5:00 PM on Wednesday, December 31 (New Year’s Eve). We will resume normal operating hours on Friday, January 2. For additional 2015 holiday closing information, please view our holiday closings page.

We appreciate your patronage and wish you a Happy New Year!
Happy New Year

 

 


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