Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Review: Lightheaded and IndieFlix


Lightheaded (2009)

Lightheaded is a 5 minute animated film, written and directed by Mike Dacko, that I watched on IndieFlix. This wonderful, creative little film won first prize for Best Animation at the Rhode Island International Film Festival and is well worth your time if you appreciate quality film making.



What is IndieFlix? IndieFlix is a streaming movie service that gives Matawan Aberdeen Public Library cardholders unlimited access to thousands of award winning independent films! Short on time? No problem. You can choose films to watch based on duration. There are 5 minute films as well as two hour films. In addition to duration, you can choose a film based on genre, film festival, audience (teen, adult, etc.), country of origin. You can even choose based on how much others enjoyed the film. 

Prefer the old classic films? IndieFlix offers many of those, too. Choose from A Streetcar Named Desire (1951), Jane Eyre (1943), All the President's Men (1976), and many, many more!

Click here if you're ready to begin watching some terrific films, and yes, it's all FREE! 

Pass the popcorn!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Adult Summer Reading 2014


Summer 2014 is flying by, isn't it?  It's hard to believe we're already in August and there's only one more week until the end of the Adult Summer Reading Club. Next Monday afternoon, August 11, we'll be doing our Week 7 raffle drawing. Right after that drawing, we'll be pulling together all the raffle tickets collected over the last seven weeks and selecting for the Grand Prize. 

This year the Grand Prize is a collection of  gift cards to FOUR local restaurants!  Bart's Restaurant, Cafe 34 Bistro, Trattoria Rustica Restaurant, and La Riviera Lounge have all generously donated gift cards so we can offer you this fabulous prize! Thank you to our sponsors!



There is still time to read one or even two more books before next Monday. Just be sure to return them and get your tickets in the jar before 2 PM. You can also earn additional raffle tickets by completing one or both of the fun science quizzes located by the Week 7 prize.

Remember, it only takes one ticket to win a raffle prize!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Phishing, vishing, and SMShing


While we at MAPL usually use this blog to post about upcoming library programs or featured library resources, today I'm going to do something a little different.  I'm going recommend a post from another blog. As a public librarian, I'm in the business of providing all sorts of information, and that's what I'd like to do now.

Get Rich Slowly is a personal finance blog that's been around for several years. In mid-February one of their contributors wrote a post titled "Phishing, vishing, and SMShing," and as I read the post I found myself thinking everyone should be aware of phishing scams and how to avoid becoming a victim. What is a phishing scam, you ask? According to the blog post, a phishing scam is a scheme that "encompasses fraudulently obtaining and using an individual's personal or financial information."

It seems we are hearing more and more about phishing schemes, and since the methods used to trick us are becoming more sophisticated, we need how to recognize the schemes so we don't fall victim to them. If you are interested in reading the entire blog post about phishing, you can find it here at Get Rich Slowly's website.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Book Review: New Tech Books

Windows 8: The Missing Manual

Do you have a lot of questions about Windows 8? Since the radical change in Windows last year, many customers are confused on how to use the new features. This book answers beginner questions about Windows 8 like “Where is my Start Menu?” and “Are my old programs compatible?”
Other topics include security, included software, Internet Explorer, photos and video, backing up, printing, and more.

Network Security

With the rise of malicious hackers on the Internet, it couldn’t hurt to become savvier in the world of cyber security. With this book, you can learn to defend your network against a wide range of existing and emerging threats.
Topics include attacker types, exploits used, and how to prevent them from accessing your data.

Microsoft Word 2013

Microsoft has done it again. In their latest version of Microsoft Word, they have added support for Windows 8, which allows for office documents to be manipulated in the cloud!
Learn how to create documents on your PC or touch-enabled device, create custom styles/templates, organize content, collaborate on SkyDrive, and more.

Kindle Fire HD: The Missing Manual

Do you own a Kindle Fire? Maybe. Do you know how to use it? Maybe not. This book is written to bring you up to speed on how to use a Kindle Fire HD. You’ll learn how to download music onto the device, browse the web, watch TV shows and movies, and of course, read!
Other topics include sending email, playing games, listening to audiobooks, and more.

Laptops for Dummies

Learn the basics of laptops with this book. If you are considering buying one, this book will help you assess your needs. If you already own one, this book gives step by step instructions on how to set it up, what the different slots are, how to start it, how to connect to the Internet, and maintain it.

HTML

Have you ever wanted to design your own website? How about modify and existing one? With this book, you can get started with creating custom websites in minutes. Learn the key skills and concepts, practice your knowledge with hands on exercises, get tips from the experts, and more.
Other topics include multimedia, Cascading Style Sheets, and JavaScript.

Networking for Dummies

This book will put you on your way to becoming a networking guru. It begins with an overview of standards, hardware, network operating systems, and other essentials, and moves on to TCP/IP, security, servers, and finally, Linux. 

Reviewed by S. Lutz

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Book Review - The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan


A stunningly good first novel, this book had me hooked from the start. Grace Winter tells us her story of how she became a newlywed, a widow, and on trial for her life, all by the age of 22. Grace is introduced to the reader as she walks through the rain to a hearing. Her light-hearted antics in the rain present a stark contrast to the story that immediately follows.
It is 1914, two years after the Titanic. Grace and her new husband, Henry, are aboard a luxury liner returning to America after their European honeymoon when the liner is stricken by a mysterious explosion.  Henry maneuvers to get Grace on a lifeboat, which the survivors soon learn is filled beyond its capacity.
As the survivors battle the elements, and each other, Grace recollects the unorthodox way she and Henry met, and the new life of privilege she thought she had attained. Her narration weaves between the days that drag on and on, waiting for rescue, and the saga of the life that brought her to the ill-fated honeymoon.
I do not usually like a book with a prologue that relates an event and then flashes back to the story leading up to that event. I spend most of my reading wondering when the event will happen. That was not the case with this book. While I knew there would be a trial, I did not hang on waiting for the offense that prompted that trial. Because the ordeal on the lifeboat was so engrossing and harrowing, I waited for their rescue, and took all other events as they came. And very often, I found myself wondering what I would do if I were in that situation.

Since this story is told by Grace, from her point of view, there are elements we can never know completely. Characters and events can only be as thoroughly related as they are known to her.  The setting is also colored by the time period in which it is set, with that era’s view of gender and class. Grace emerges as both creator and victim of her circumstances, and is as memorable and complex as the events she describes.

Reviewed by Jeanette Walker

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Book Review - All Roads Lead to Austen: A Yearlong Journey with Jane


I stumbled upon All Roads Lead to Austen: A Yearlong Journey with Jane by Amy Elizabeth Smith while searching for an ebook to read on the train this summer. I browsed through Freading ebooks since I knew everything would available for download immediately (no wait list!)  While I'm not an Austenite, I do seem to gravitate to books centered around Jane Austen's books ... The Jane Austen Book Club is a good example of this.

I'm also an armchair traveler so I really liked that All Roads Lead to Austen is part travelogue. During a yearlong sabbatical from teaching, Smith journeys to six countries in Latin America (Guatemala, Mexico, Ecuador, Chile, Paraguay, and Argentina) to conduct reading groups using three of Austen's novels - Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, and Emma - in an attempt to discover if Austen's books translate across time and culture.  Since this book is a memoir, it was lots of fun for me to "meet" real people from these Latin American countries, not just fictional characters created by an author. 

My absolute favorite part of the book is when Smith asked the members of her reading groups to suggest the authors from their country that they thought she should read. I diligently jotted down the author's names, vowing to read as many of them as I possibly can (translated into English, of course). I won't embarrass myself by revealing how many of the authors were new to me.

If you are curious about All Roads Lead to Austen, you can check out additional reviews on Goodreads.

This book review was submitted by Jill S.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Freegal 4.0 Is Here!


If you're not already familiar with Freegal Music, it allows you to download 3 FREE songs per week from a collection of over 7 million songs!   The songs are downloaded as MP3 files and they are yours to keep forever. Freegal Music currently has music from over 28,000 labels, including the complete catalog of Sony Music Entertainment.

In addition to songs, you can now download music videos from Freegal.  The music videos count as 2 credits compared to the 1 credit cost of each song, but like the songs, the MP4 video files are yours to keep forever. Choose from over 10,000 videos from artists including Adele, One Direction, Miley Cyrus, Michael Jackson, and many, many more.

Another feature new to Freegal 4.0 is the ability to create a wishlist of songs that you'd like to download in the future.  This will come in very handy when you see all the new songs being offered!

Each person with a Matawan Aberdeen Library card is given 3 credits per week (Monday to Sunday) which you can used to download songs and videos. To access Freegal 4.0, please visit our website at www.matawanaberdeenlibrary.com, click on Electronic Resources, select Music, and then click on the Freegal icon ... or simply click here. You can browse without signing in, but you must sign in with your library card number in order to download videos or songs.

Enjoy!

This post was written by Dennis K. and Jill S.