Wednesday, December 5, 2012

An Honor Serving You...

Dear eLibrary News readers,

Unfortunately, the time has come for me to bid you all Adieu, but not without letting you know...

It has been an honor serving you as Co-editor these last few months!

Wishing you and yours a joyous holiday season and a Happy New Year!

May you appreciate the wonder of the season as I leave you with some photographs celebrating the beauty of the main campus!

-Kerry Vash, Online Librarian-







Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Best of Both Worlds! Dual-Booting Windows 8 and Windows 7!

From www.makeuseof.com

"'Tis the season to be jolly!"  And even if you're not feeling the joy of the season just yet, then perhaps a new PC surprise under your tree will have you singing "Fa la la la la, la la la la!"  But before you "Deck the Halls", have you prepared yourself for Microsoft® Windows 8?  If not, then you might consider this brilliant MakeUseOf idea:  dual-booting both Windows 8 and Windows 7 until you get the hang of things.  Chris Hoffman provides step by step instructions on how to accomplish this in his article, "Not Sure About Upgrading? Then Why Not Dual Boot Windows 8 With Windows 7?As Hoffman explains, dual-booting "allows you to test Windows 8 while keeping Windows 7 around as an escape hatch if you want out."  Check out the article to experience the best of both worlds today!

                                           - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More CHOICE(R)-Recommended Online Resources!

CHOICE® “is a publishing unit of the Association of College & Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association." The following online resources were featured in the October 2012, Volume 50, No. 02 issue of Choice magazine (pages 23, 53, and 111, respectively) and are included here as items of potential interest for your future research:

General

Trove, from the National Library of Australia is a "web portal" that "...offers access to over three million resources"
"include...[ing] access to online catalogs" which makes available "the substantial digital content  of many other libraries and archives around Australia." This amazing "union catalog" is searchable via "basic or advanced searching...".  Of particular interest to scholars, is the opportunity to access "digitized materials" which can be searched via the following categories:  "Digitised Newspapers and More", "Journals, Articles, and Data Sets", "Books", "Pictures, Photos, Objects", "Music, Sound and Video", "Maps", "Diaries, Letters, Archives", "Archived Websites (1996-Now)" and "People and Organisations".  Access to "all the major colonial..." "Australian newspapers" in digitized form (spanning the dates 1803 to 1982) is a marvelous benefit indeed!  Registering with the site also gives you the option of making "public or private lists to keep track of...[your] research."  "Lower-level undergraduates and above" as well as "general readers" will appreciate the wonders to be found in this treasure Trove. Beginning users will find "A Guide to Trove" especially instructive. 
 
Humanities

The "result of a merger between the American Music Center and Meet the Composer", New Music USA "serves as a portal to invaluable resources...for contemporary musicians and composers as well as their audiences."  An important source for grants previously funded by these two companies, New Music USA has continued these programs which can be found "...here, with detailed information and [application] instructions."   Site highlights include NewMusicBox, a multimedia production created by New Music USA which features news focused on American composers, innovators and their fans and also provides additional access to Counterstream Radio, "a streaming radio site for American music", and the Online Library which provides "a comprehensive database of works by living American composers."  If you are interested in "the latest developments concerning contemporary American music, composers, and musicians", then this site is a must-see!  Be sure to also check out their "weekly blog" which usually includes "audio and video clips." 

Social & Behavioral Sciences

States Perform, "sponsored by the Council of State Governments", is a "website" that "provide[s] users '"access to interactive, customizable and up to date comparative performance measurements for the 50 states..."' in the following six areas:  "fiscal and economic matters, public safety and justice, energy and environment, transportation, health and human services, and education...".  If you choose the "Compare" option, you will find that each area is also further subdivided into subcategories, including measures, with up to ten measures available for comparison for each of the six areas.  Comparisons can be made across "the US as a whole or one of four geographical regions..." with "search results appear[ing] in easy-to-read charts that may be downloaded as Excel files."  If you would like to focus on an individual "state...and views its collected data, choose the "Profile" option.  The "Customize" option provides a unique opportunity for "users to select one of the key areas, choose from several subcategories, select a date range [typically ranging "from 2002 to 2012"], and produce charts or maps to display these data."  Finally, the "Trend" option allows "users [to] select a region and individual states constituting that region, then choose from subcategories of the key areas, and produce charts, maps, or tables that display data from 2004 to 2010."  An "invaluable" resource for "scholars, students, government officials, and members of the public", the opportunity to freely access such "a wide range of information..." about "the 50 states", so quickly and efficiently, is truly priceless.


                             - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Introducing the New and Improved Library Website!


Cannon Memorial Library's New Website!
You've probably noticed that our Library's website has a completely new look!  More streamlined for increased efficiency, these recent rennovations were designed to help better serve you so that you can find the information and resources you're looking for faster and easier!  

Our Library Director, Brent Short, explains the objectives that guided the website remodeling: 

     "One of our main aims with the new library website was to 
      make it much easier to use.  We provided a straightforward 
      web design with drop down menus which reduce the amount
      of clicks it takes to get directly to the resources we offer.

       "We were after practicality, not slickness.  We want a 
        website that's not necessarily pretty to look at, but one that
        increases the chances of our patrons getting to what they
        want as quickly as possible because we think that's what
        our patrons really want as well."

             "There will be other changes in the not-too-distant future, 
          I'm sure, but for now we wanted a website that was
          uncluttered, and where everything was easy to find and  
          to get to."

As we continue to fine-tune certain aspects, we appreciate your patience as we believe you will find our final website destination well worth the drive to get there.  In the meantime, let's journey through some of the major changes together...

How to Find the Library Website from the
University Home Page


Click on the "Find it Fast" option at the top right of the home page. 





A drop down box will appear from which you can then click on the "Library" option to be taken to our home page 
OR

Here is another option:




Click on the "Academics" icon to the top left of the home page's menu bar.   

Click on the "Library" link at the bottom of the lefthand
list of options to be directed to our home page.
Points of Interest

  • Looking for our Library hours and contact information?



  • Click on the "About" link at the top of the page to find our contact information as well as our list of hours via the Cannon Memorial Calendar. 
  • Looking for the right library form to request an article, book, eReserve item or to submit a question to Ask a Librarian? 

  
Click on the "Services" link at the top of the page and choose "Forms" to browse through our list of options.

  •  While we think you will find our Library catalog's new and improved interface to be much more user-friendly, if you prefer to search our older version, Leocat2, (use this version, for example, if you would like to search by call number), just follow these steps:

Click on the "Library Catalog" option from the "Find Info" category. 


Click on the "older interface" link at the top of the page to access Leocat 2. 

  • Looking for the latest information on online resources? 


Click on our Blog link at its new location at the top of the Library home page.

With a more streamlined and user-friendly approach, we hope that our rennovated website helps you find the resources you are looking for faster and easier!  As always, please don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. 

  - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -




Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Become a Guru with Gooru Search Engine!


From www.goorulearning.org
Expand your horizons education majors with Gooru - "A Search Engine for Learning"!  Gooru offers both educators and students the opportunity "to search for rich collections of multimedia resources, digital textbooks, videos, games and quizzes created by educators in the Gooru community." 


From www.goorulearning.org
Gooru is a free educucation search engine that strives to "aggregate the best of the web, giving you high-quality and free multimedia resources within seconds..." which can then be "organize[d]...into a playlist called a collection."  The potential for teachers is immense as they can very quickly discover quite an assortment of resources on a subject in a myriad of formats that they might find useful for their students' learning enrichment.  To begin, you just type a subject into the search box or choose the "Browse Library" option below the "Search" icon to see a list of subjects and their resources.  

Gooru's initial emphasis has involved providing comprehensive collections "...on math, science, and social science subjects for 5th through 12th grade", but they are also "constantly expanding to more subjects and grade levels."   As stated on their "Who Are We?" page, Gooru's team of educators includes "education researchers, academic experts, designers and engineers who share a passion for education."  At the same time, Gooru also "encourage[s] the use of Open Education Resources (OER) and allow[s] users to upload their own material and make it available on Gooru Search."  According to their FAQ page, a Gooru account is not needed to "use or share resources....However, if you want to save your favorites or customize a collection, you will need to sign up...."  To sign up, click on the "Register" option at the top righthand corner of the Gooru home page.  To learn more about this innovative education search engine, visit Gooru's Help Center.   

                                            - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Message to Our Readers...

Dear eLibrary News Readers,

This entry is dedicated to you as we pause to appreciate your loyal readership these past few years.  From our blog's inaugural days to today's honorary posting, our mission has remained the same:  to present the latest library news and highlight valuable online resources for the benefit of the entire Saint Leo University community, including faculty, staff and students, with particular consideration of our online students. And my, have those years flown by as we've explored so many different informational topics together from Online Collaborative Writing Tools to a myriad of CHOICE(R) Recommended Online Resources! It seems that as our blog has progressed,so has our readership,as the graph below illustrates: 

eLibrary News Readership

With an all time viewing history of 4,440, we hope to quadruple our readership in the year to come with your help! As our blog continues to evolve while remaining committed to our original mission, please let us know if there are any library/informational topics or online resources you would like to know more about! We would welcome your suggestions and can be reached by phone or email (please see our contact information to the right of this page).  Most of all, we would like to say thank you, dear readers...it is your readership that makes each entry worthwhile!

Sincerely,

Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Co-editor

Expedite Your Research Formatting with Google Scholar Citations!


Improve the efficiency of your research experience with Google Scholar Citations

From http://scholar.google.com/intl/en/scholar/citations.html

You can now cite any article by clicking on the "Cite" link which appears below each article entry. 

Clicking on the "Cite" option for your particular item of interest, provides you with instant MLA, APA and Chicago citations immediately available to copy and paste.  It also gives you the option to import the citations to various citation management softwares (BibTeX, Endnote, Refman, Refworks). 


For more advanced research options for scholars, it is beneficial to set up a profile on Google Scholar Citations.  An informative post by Eileen Allen from Syracuse University's School of Information Studies' Information Space blog, entitled, "Google Scholar Citations:  Setting Up a Profile", clearly illustrates these benefits.  To join Google Scholar Citations, you will first need to set up a Google accountThe next step is to click on the "My Citations" link at the top righthand corner of the Google Scholar home page and fill out the necessary information.


  
Good research takes time, patience and effort.  Luckily, modern technology can help lighten the burdens of some of the more tedious steps such as citation formatting.  So give yourself a break and let Google Scholar Citations help you out today!

                                       - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

EasyBib Just Got Easier! Now Available for Google Chrome!

From www.easybib.com

Attention EasyBib users!  Citations have gotten even easier since the company just released their browser extension for Google Chrome!  Click here to read more!  New to EasyBib?  Click here on our Library's website to learn more about the amazing citation tools available through this service.

                                         - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Attention Science Majors!

Websites That Help Answer Your Scientific Inquiries!

From Wikimedia Commons
Click here for the specific File URL.
"Currently living on earth organismes mixture"
Amalgamation of photos by the following authors:
  Fir0002, John Severns = Severnjc, NASA,
w:en:User:Dmcdevit, Deutsch: Dr. Ralf Wagner
Uploaded by Mike Kr├╝ger at de.wikiped
(For individual attibution of each photo, click here):
[CC-BY-SA-3.0
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]
If you are looking for websites that will help you answer a variety of scientific inquiries, then this MakeUseOf article by Saikat Basu, "For the Scientific Spirit:  7 Websites for Science Questions & Answers", will be sure to steer you in the right direction!  

Basu highlights the following websites in his article:

How Stuff Works

More than just a depot for fun facts (although, certainly, there is much fun to be found on this site; just click on the "Random Article" option at the top right of the menu bar to generate an interesting article on a completely random subject), most of the articles on this website are based on pure science.  To read more about the reliability of this amazing source, click here.  To focus solely on scientific topics, choose the "Science" tab from the menu bar and then choose from the list of subtopics which appear on a submenu bar.  Make sure to also check out the many science videos available!

Mad Sci Network

A network for those of all ages to ask scientific inquiries of all kinds, Mad Sci Network is "staffed and maintained by volunteer scientists and engineers from around the world." Basu also points out that "All questions are graded and range from K-3 to professorial levels." Search through the archives of the 36,000 questions already answered via the website's Search Engine or if you feel you have a frequently asked inquiry, check out the MadSci FAQs. If you don't find your inquiry answered in these areas, you may also address your question to Ask-A-Scientist. Before submitting your question, you might also want to review their stipulations for inquiries.

 
New Scientist

A science forum for inquistive minds of all ages that aims to provide "The Last Word" on "The science of everyday things", New Scientist online contains "an archive of over 76,000 content pieces" from New Scientist magazine.  According to the Open Directory Project, New Scientist is a "weekly science and technology news magazine, considered by some to be the world's best, with diverse subject matter." This website would be a great resource to answer a general scientific inquiry or spark your interest in a new facet of the ever-evolving world of science.  Basu points out that "You can search for anything without logging in, but if you want to ask a question, do the free registration...".   Just keep in mind that for academic research purposes however, the information on this website stems from a magazine as opposed to a scientific journal which would most likely be peer-reviewed, thus helping to preserve standards and reliability.  To find more suitable sources for your academic research, check out our Library's Subject Research Guides for Biology, Chemistry and Environmental Science.    

The New York Times

The New York Times Science Q&A page provides excellent information online from their highly reputable newspaper. You can find out the answers to inquiries ranging from, "Do Germs Have Germs?" to "Can Animals Get Sunburn, Too?". Search the archives via the search box at the bottom of the page (just be mindful that the further back you go, the more you will need to consider the importance of currency to your specific topic). As it states near the end of every article, you may also email your inquiry to question@nytimes.com.



This incredibly unique "computational knowledge engine", designed by Stephen Wolfram and originally based on his computational software system, Mathematica, establishes the following prominent goal:  "to build on the achievements of science and other systematizations of knowledge to provide a single source that can be relied on by everyone for definitive answers to factual queries."  Wolfram Alpha strives to provide "expert-level knowledge", drawing upon its own database to deliver an organized collection of data in response to each inquiry, rather than the typical search engine’s response of a list of web resources.  A distinct answer engine indeed, Wolfram Alpha accepts inquiries in both natural ("What is five plus five?") and computational ("5+5") language. Click on the “Examples” link which appears below the search box to see the types of inquiries you might ask within the various fields of science.  Choose your area of interest (Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Astronomy, Earth Sciences, Life Sciences, Computational Sciences, Health and Medicine are listed as options) to see specific examples.  For example, clicking on the “Physics” link, gives you examples of the types of search terms you might enter (such as if you want to find out about Newton’s laws, you might just enter “Newton’s laws” or perhaps, you might have a question about Thermodynamics, specifically involving computations with Joule’s law, in which case you would enter your computation:  “Joule's law u=3V, R=1ohm for 10s”).  Although you may use Wolfpram|Alpha's free service without signing in, there are benefits to creating an account (click on the "Sign in" link at the top right of the home page to create an account; alternatively, you may use your Facebook ID) such as being able to set favorites, view your search history and customize settings.   A paid service, WolframAlpha|Pro, is also available with extended options (such as the opportunity to go beyond “text input” and enter “images, files and tabular data” into your search query for analysis).  

But on to the most critical question…Can you trust Wolfram|Alpha’s results?  According to their, “Frequently AskedQuestions (FAQ)” page, they "certainly hope so", citing their "automated testing, expert review, and checking external data...".  They also mention that their “data is continually being updated…”.  To learn more about the origins of their data, click here.  On their “About” page, they cite their "world-class team and participation from top outside experts in countless fields...."  Although they primarily retrieve answers from their own database, they do offer some unique search options as well that pull data from outside websites (such as their option to create personal “facebookreports” or for example, relying on data from businesses such as Best Buy to list product information for shopping queries).  So returning to the original question...Can you trust Wolfram|Alpha's results?   While many praises have been sung about this unique answer engine's accuracy, ultimately, it is really a similar answer as to many of these websites:  it is best that as a critical user, you verify the results via additional reliable sources, especially when conducting academic research.

Don’t forget to have fun exploring the wonders of Wolfram|Alpha as questions about Culture, Sports, History, Money & Finance, Socioeconomic Data, as well as many more categories (even Shopping!), are fair game as well!  Wolfram Alpha has the answers to questions as wide-ranging as “What was Green Day’s first album?”, “How old was Babe Ruth in 1942?”, “Where was Abraham Lincoln born?”, “What is the second largest country by GDP per capita?” Clicking on the “Random” option below the search box is also a fun way to learn about a totally new and surprising topic!  While factual inquiries with "a mathematical or physical answer" are Wolfram Alpha's main concern, Basu also points out that this one of a kind answer engine is not adverse to pondering more philosophical questions from time to time:  "...go ahead, ask what is life too!”

**

In addition, Basu highlights the following sites which may also contain very helpful information, however they should be examined with increased scrutiny as they are run by open communities where anyone may answer a question.  In these types of online communities, it is up to each respondent to prove his or her own credibility with their answer which is then ranked by the community of users.  Therefore, it is important that you consider each answer from a critical viewpoint where you must first verify the following: 
  • the credibility of each respondent (as well as the resources they might cite in their answer)
  •  the accuracy of the answer itself determined by checking against other reliable resources
  • the objectivity of the answer (is this fact or opinion?)
  • how current the information is. 
Our Library Tutorial by Faculty Development Librarian, Doris Van Kampen, on "Verifying and Evaluating Online Sources" can further assist you in making those critical resource decisions. 

Here are the open community websites Basu recommends: 

Reddit

According to their own description, Reddit is "a type of online community where users vote on content." Registered users (to register, click on the "want to join? login or register" tab to the top right of the page under the menu bar) may post links or write their own entries on any subject they wish, as well as vote on posts which impacts their ranking in order of importance, and thus their positioning on the page. In regards to science, Basu recommends "Reddit" as a resource which "can probably answer all your science questions as there are sub-Reddits [specific subject areas] on every branch of science". Click here to be taken to their question / answer AskScience page with a list of Science-based Sub-Reddits (including Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Psych/Cog/Neuro, Earth Sciences, Applied Sciences, Formal Sciences, just to name a few...) found in chart-form to the middle of the column at the right of the page (you will need to scroll down the page to find it). Just click on the science sub-reddit link of your choice to be taken to that subject's individual page. In addition to having a question / answer Science Reddit, there is also a Science Reddit page where members write posts on scientific topics or link to outside scientific articles (also broken down into sub-Reddits; see the chart of science sub-topics located towards the middle of the right-hand column).  Although the "Science" area of Reddit attempts to establish a level of authenticity regarding their content, asking their users to keep their discussions "Scientific (i.e. based on repeatable anaylsis published in a peer reviewed journal)", it is of course, up to you as a critical user, to determine if the source (remember, Reddit is an open source community, where any registered user, expert or novice, may write a post) and information offered in each post can be considered reliable and accurate. Keep in mind also, that ranking may NOT be an indicator of reliabity or accuracy, as it will not be clear what terms were used in each user's voting process to determine ranking. 


Stack Exchange

Stack Exchange encompasses an incredibly broad range of information.  Basu describes it as a "network of specialized communities, each on separate subjects...."  Their Science link offers community options for many different areas including "Biology", "Chemistry", "Physics" and others...  Each area includes a multitude of questions and answers which are further organized by subtopic tags at the right of the "Questions" page.  For the most part, Stack Exchange's communities are open at this time where anyone can ask or answer questions, or recommend editing changes without logging in (however, to vote on the credibility of a respondent, one must log in or create an account). Be sure to check out each area's "Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)" section (you can find the link in the yellow "Welcome!" box to the right of page; the "faq" link is at the bottom of the box; here is an example of the "Biology" community's FAQ page) to determine each community's ground rules, including how they determine the "reputation" of respondents which is based on community ranking (you of course, as a critical user, would still be wise to scrutinize on your own terms). 

There is so much to wonder about our world...Here's hoping these websites spark your scientific spirit!

                                               - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

CHOICE(R)-Recommended Online Resources!

CHOICE® “is a publishing unit of the Association of College & Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association."  The following online resources were featured in the July 2012, Volume 49, No. 11 issue of Choice magazine (pages 5, 9, and 77, respectively) and are included here as items of potential interest for your future research:

General

The National Park Service:  U.S. Department of the Interior website provides valid information on "the history, current events, and culture pertaining to national parks in the US."  General subjects "related to nature and science" are also included.  Maintained by The National Park Service, this "well-organized and easy to navigate" site is intended for "general readers, students of all ages, and educators".  In addition, the site is a visual feast with "images, virtual tours, web cams, and multimedia presentations..." galore. 

Udemy, known as "'the academy of you'", provides "thousands of courses in a range of subject areas, from traditional topics like business and psychology to more timely topics such as developing iPhone apps."  It is important to note, however, that while most courses are free, "some have a $5 - $250 fee, based on individual instructors' pricing".  To access the free courses, you must "log in through a Udemy account or via Facebook."  The use of Udemy via Facebook offers the best of social media possibilities:  "students may connect with others in a class,...and with the individual who created the course."  The scope of materials available for each course is impressive and include "lectures, PowerPoint presentations, videos, audio files, and PDF documents."  The site is well-organized and "easy to browse" with courses arranged by categories.  Even better, if you are interested in creating your own course, you "may use the Udemy platform to design a course for free and then decide whether to make it available to students at no charge or for a fee." 

Social & Behavioral Sciences

Global Resource Directory, created by "globalEDGE...at Michigan State University serves as a digital library to several thousand high-quality online global business resources."  This very well-organized site is a favorite among "business professionals because most of its resources are freely available and would be challenging to locate by other means."  Each resource includes a "brief annotation and a review date...", while items considered to be "superior have a 'globalEDGE Recommended' logo,..., and appear at the top of entry lists."  Be sure to check out "the Multi-Country subheading under Research, which provides access to country profile resources, including a popular in-house product titled globalEDGE Country Insights...".  This product allows you to compare data and statistics for over 200 different countries.

                                                                     -Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Uh-oh! My Cell Phone Just Went for a Swim!

From www.makeuseof.com
A practical MakeUseOf article by Christian Cawley, "How to Save a Wet Cell Phone or Tablet," helps you realize that all may not be lost when your cell
                                                         phone or tablet takes a sudden
                                                         underwater plunge. 
                                        
So let's get the bad news out of the way:  Dropping your cell phone or tablet in any accumulation of water or accidentally exposing it to the relentless downpour of a Florida summer storm is likely to leave your device damaged beyond repair.  This scenario is nearly 100% likely to play out given one critical factor:  that you keep your device turned on after the damage.  Fortunately, even the rain clouds that wreak havoc on your electronic devices offer the possibility for silver linings.  You still have a fighting chance to reverse the damage, beginning with turning your device OFF immediately following the incident, especially as we all know that water and electricity don't mix, leaving the potential for electric shock.   As Cawley emphasizes, time is of the essence when it comes to trying to resuscitate your device and it is necessary that you "act as quickly as possible."  Click here to read more about some suggested courses of action for when your cell phone decides to take that dive. 

                                                -Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Help! My Onlife Life Is Out of Control!

From www.makeuseof.com
Do you ever feel like your online life is spinning out of control?  Are your emails forming an endless conga line of chaos while your true agenda lies somewhere lost in the frenzy?  Do you receive a multitude of unwelcome advertisements which seem to appear right after you've signed up for a new social media account or downloaded a new app?  Do you ever feel shocked when you look up at the clock and it's 3:00 A.M. when all you planned on doing was surfing the Net for "just a few minutes"?  If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, then you just might be in danger of losing control of your online life.  Luckily, this MakeUseOf article by Nancy Messieh, "4 Handy Services to Get Your Online Life Under Control", offers several ways you can take back control. 

Messieh highlights the following four services to help you regain control of your online life:

Notification Control

Tidy up your email notifications in one minute with this free service!  Click here to learn more.

MyPermissions

Avi Charkham, the Founder of MyPermissions, explains it best:  "Privacy is no longer about protecting your personal computer!  It's about controlling who has permissions to access your personal information on the web."  Every time you sign up with websites and apps, you are allowing "them permissions to access your personal info."  While it's remarkably easy to share your permissions (most often without even realizing it), removing access to your permissions can actually be quite difficult.

This is where MyPermissions comes in!  As Messieh explains, "you can use the service to figure out which third party services have access to your social media accounts."  Click here to learn more. 

*Please note:  This is not a free service!

Unroll.me

Now here is an excellent free service for managing your out of control inbox!  As Messieh points out, Unroll.me makes it especially easy to "unsubscribe from" all those unread newsletters by pooling them all together "in one place."  Click here to learn more. 

*Please note:  According to Messieh, "At the moment, Unroll.me only works with Gmail and Google Apps email accounts."  Also, you must "grant it access to your email account", but as Messieh points out, "...with a service like MyPermissions, it's easy to simply revoke access..." later. 

Rescue Time

Rescue yourself from the pitfalls of online time wasters!  RescueTime tracks your virtual time and allows you to graph your online efficiency.  Available for both Windows and Mac, RescueTime offers both a free service, as well as a paid option with extra features.  Click here to learn more. 

*Please note:  As Messieh points out, utilizing RescueTime will allow "third party service access to all of your activity" online.  It is highly encouraged that you review RescueTime's privacy policy before you begin using the service.

                                             -Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

                        

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Free Learning Tools!

Attention Education Majors!
Free Learning Tools Available!

From www.criticalthinking.com
The Critical Thinking Co. is now offering you a fabulous opportunity to receive three free e-books and access to their trial software!  All that is necessary is that you submit the online form in which you agree to receive emails from The Critical Thinking Co. concerning their business and products.  Click here to learn more! 

                                               - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Experience the Excellence of Ebrary!
Part II:  Multi-User vs. Single-User Access

From www.ebrary.com
Have you ever tried to download an eBook in ebrary only to discover that the system would not grant you access to the material you needed?  Most likely this happened because you were trying to gain access to a single-user eBook that was already being used by another patron.  Read on to discover the difference between multi-user and single-user access to eBooks.
Multi-User vs. Single-User Access
While most eBooks available to you on ebrary provide multi-user access (with a check-out period of 14 days) so that many users can enjoy the same eBook simultaneously, there are some eBooks that only allow for single-user access (with a check-out period of 7 days) in which case the eBook may only be used by one user at a time and no other users may view the eBook until it has been returned.
How Do I Determine Whether an eBook Allows for Single-User Access Only?
You can often determine if eBooks are of the single-user type because they are accompanied by a "Release this title" icon on the QuickView bar or you will only be allowed to see a preview copy which means it is currently checked out to another user.  A prompt will appear allowing you to sign up on the waiting list for that particular eBook.
Friendly Reminder
Please be mindful of other patrons during the course of your eBook transactions, especially in the case of items with single-user access.  If you decide that a particular eBook is not as useful to your research as you expected, please return the item immediately for the benefit of all patrons.  Click here for instructions on returning documents early via Adobe Digital Editions
To continue to explore all of the options available to you via ebrary, please visit the Ebrary Support Center
                          - Kerry Vash, Online Librarian, Blog Co-editor -