Archive for February, 2009

KDL Closed Monday, February 16

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

All Kent District Library branches will be closed Monday, February 16 for an All Staff professional development day. We’re taking a day to make sure we’re the best library system we can be for all of our customers. Please pardon our absence, and we’ll all be back on Tuesday, February 17!


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In Defense of Yahoo

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

 

I’d like to take a moment to talk about Yahoo.com.  Everyone talks about Google, but I don’t think everyone relies on Google because the results are better.  Google is lucky enough to be a verb too, while it is awkward to tell someone to “just Yahoo it.”  Even though I do most of my “Googling” through Google because I like the simple interface, I use Yahoo as my homepage for a few reasons:

  • It has news stories in the middle of the page, with tabs for world or local news.
  • By choosing “Games” on the left, one can find really fun games, including online crossword puzzles!
  • Click “Movies” and search by your zip code.  You can see the movie listings for all theaters in your area.
  • Choose “TV” and enter your zip code to see your local TV listings.  It is an easy way to find out what is a new episode and what is a rerun.
  • By choosing “Shopping,” you can select a product and compare prices between vendors.
  • Choose “Maps” and search for businesses or addresses (like Mapquest or Google Maps).

I understand that many of these features can be found through Google, but they are in the forefront through Yahoo’s main page.  In addition to the features I mentioned, Yahoo has normal searching at the top, including an image and video search. 

Keep Yahoo-ing!


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Get Healthy Online!

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

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Most of us don’t eat as well as we should. Sometimes it’s too many empty calories or just too many calories or not enough of the right kind of calories. As with everything, there’s a website for that! Thedailyplate.com, now part of livestrong.com, offers a fast and convenient way to get healthier. Start by inputting your height and current weight, (the site keeps this information confidential) along with your age and level of activity, then input how much weight you wish to lose per week. Through some sort of mathematical algorithm, the site computes how many calories you should eat per day.

You can then track the foods you’ve eaten and see how you’re doing on your calorie goal for the day. You can see the calorie count, protein, fat, fiber, carbs, and even sodium and cholesterol. If you’re crazy about spreadsheets and numbers, you’ll love this program. In addition to being able to track the foods you’ve eaten for a day, you can also track what you’ve eaten in past weeks and months. This allows a comprehensive picture of your eating patterns — good and bad — to emerge.

The “My Plate” section tells you how many calories you have left to eat for the day but what if — oops — you accidently had that extra piece of cake? You can also input exercise activities (including reading — 100 calories per hour sitting, 138 standing) and then recalculate your calories left to eat for the day.

Overall, the site provides a powerful tool which allows a user to make intelligent and informed food decisions. Thedailyplate.com is also remarkably easy to use.


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Local Publisher Receives Awards

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

                   

The American Library Association (ALA) has announced its 2009 award-winning youth titles and one distinguished West Michigan publisher is included on that list. Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company of Grand Rapids, is the recipient of two of these prestigious awards for the following titles:

Congratulations, Eerdmans Publishing! Also of note in this year’s selection process:

  • The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman (Newbery Medal Winner for the most distinguished contribution to children’s literature).
  • The House in the Night, illustrated by Beth Krommes, written by Susan Marie Swanson (Caldecott Medal Winner for the most distinguished picture book for children)
  • Jellicoe Road, by Melina Marchetta (Printz Award for excellence in literature for young adults)

The complete list of awards can be found here. Congratulations to all of this year’s award winners!


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2009 Nonfiction

Monday, February 2nd, 2009

This year in nonfiction has much to offer animal lovers.  Look in the new nonfiction lists for January and February for the following titles:

All Pets Go to Heaven Animals Make Us Human American Buffalo Adopted Dog Bible

You’ll also find advice on food and finances, and a variety of memoirs.


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Celebrate Black History Month

Monday, February 2nd, 2009

Black History MonthKDL invites you to celebrate the contributions of the many African Americans that have helped not only advance civil liberties for their people, but for all Americans as well. During the month of February, KDL will feature a number of resources highlighting significant people, events and milestones in African-American history. With a wide selection of books and other reading material to a number of online resources and more, we encourage you to celebrate Black History Month and learn more about the diverse accomplishments and contributions of its people.

“Yes we can.” Barack Obama,
44th President of the United States


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