Teen Blog

Watch out for Cheap Tablets!

curtis klu tablet computer

Serial readers of the Tech Answers blog probably know that I would recommend either an iPad Mini or a Google Nexus 7 for an eReader tablet and that, though they are very pretty (the devices, not the blog readers, who could be pretty, but I wouldn’t know), I would guide most away from retailer-specific hardware like the Kindle Fire or the Barnes & Noble Nook.  But that overlooks one very important buying category: Cheap Tablets.  These are sub-$150 and often sub-$100 devices that you’ll find at convenience and drug stores.

Headquarters' Decorations - Go Green with the Grinch!

Headquarters' Decorations - Go Green with the Grinch!

This year the second floor of the Headquarters Library decided to do something a bit different for their holiday decorations. The Youth Services staff made the decision to have all of their decorations made from recycled and repurposed materials, specifically focusing on books weeded from the collection due to extreme damage. Then the system-wide Teen Council and teen volunteers from Headquarters handled the majority of the decoration creation. Over the course of three weeks these groups worked together to create the trees, snowflakes, paper chains and houses that make up the majority of the second floor decorations while staff members created the complementary hedgehogs. One fun twist that came from using old books was creating a game to go with the decorations.

Five trees created from old books are on the Youth Services Research Desk. We encourage all customers to come and try to guess which books were used to make the trees for a chance to win a prize. To go with the theme of recycled and repurposed decorations the Teen Council decided on the slogan “Go Green with the Grinch” to help tie all of the decorations together.

Check out this slideshow and view on Flickr to find out more about how some of the decorations were made.

Intro to Adobe Digital Editions

Adobe Digital Editions program icon

If you own a Nook, Sony, Kobo, or other non-Amazon e-ink (black and white) eBook reader listed here and you’ve checked out eBooks from CRRL, chances are you’ve had the misfortune of dealing with Adobe Digital Editions, the gateway between most copy-protected eBooks and reading devices.  If you’re planning on giving or receiving one of these toys this holiday season, you’ll want to read on.  Adobe Digital Editions is poorly designed, non-intuitive and relies far, far too heavily on keyboard shortcuts and buried menus.  Even with its recent, underwhelming 2.0 update, be you tech “dummy” or “genius," it’s a pain. Sadly, it’s what we’re all required to use in order to get our eBooks from the Internet to our devices.  Read on to learn its secrets.  

Tales from Tolkien: A Retrospective on Film Adaptations of Middle Earth

It has been over a decade since the first of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings adaptations, The Fellowship of the Ring, was released.  This film was greeted with both critical and audience acclaim upon its debut, and became a definitive cinematic event of the early 21st Century.  On December 14, 2012, Jackson’s long-awaited adaptation of the prequel to The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, will be released.  Jackson’s films have become regarded as classics to the point that many fans may become unhappy with anyone other than Peter Jackson making a cinematic Tolkien adaptation, and it may come as a surprise to them that some film adaptations of Tolkien’s mythic cycle had already been made prior to Jackson’s! While waiting for the release of the first film in Jackson’s Hobbit adaptation, let’s take a look back at some prior cinematic versions of Tolkien’s works, and at Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Rip-offs and Tributes: A Look at Derivative Works

picture of copy machine

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  Isn’t that how an article about derivative works is supposed to begin?  We only ask because there are probably other articles out there on this topic that begin the same way.  Whether or not we admit it to ourselves, 100% true originality in the case of media like books, film, music and games is practically unheard of.  That’s not a bad thing; works that build on one another can be some of the richest experiences imaginable.  On the other hand, some people are just lazy and rip-off other, greater works. 

CRRL Offers More eBooks with Freading

Freading - A New Look at eBook Lending

Thanks to the Library of Virginia, CRRL customers now have access to more eBooks via Freading.

To browse and check out eBooks, visit our Freading web site, and log in using your library barcode and four digit pin number.

 

Quick FAQs:

  • Freading is a token based platform. Each customer gets 4 tokens per week. These roll over for 4 weeks, for a maximum of 16 tokens, and then they leave your account. A week is Monday to Sunday from  midnight, EST.
  • Books cost 4, 2, or 1 token(s). In general, this is based on how new a book is.
  • Checkout period is 2 weeks. Books can be renewed once for "free" or for a number of tokens depending on the title.
  • Freading allows simultaneous use of titles, so no holds necessary!

What's New in the Catalog in CRRL Mobile App

What's New in the Catalog

Like to see the newest additions to the CRRL collection? How about seeing them right on your phone? Now you can with the CRRL mobile app!

First, you need CRRL's mobile app installed on your phone or tablet. It is available for download from your phone's app store, or you can use your phone's Web browser to go to http://crrl.boopsie.com for the download and more information.

Once the CRRL mobile app is installed, open the app and select "What's New in the Catalog." You have a choice of All, Top Choices, DVDs, Teen and Children's Books. Select one of these, and you'll see what's new this week in the category. Click on a title to put it on hold, right from your phone. Easy!

You can get the same information by email by signing up for Wowbrary's weekly email newsletter.

Don't have a phone? No problem. You can also use our mobile app in a Web browser: http://crrl.boopsie.com/m/

Self Check-out - Check-out Items on Your Phone

Self Check in Mobile App

Did you know that you can check out books on your phone? You can! And it's so easy.

First, you need CRRL's mobile app installed on your phone or tablet. It is available for download from your phone's app store, or you can use your phone's Web browser to go to http://crrl.boopsie.com for the download and more information.

Once the CRRL mobile app is installed, open the app, select 'Self Check-out,' then scan the library barcode or type it in and enter your barcode and PIN. It's as simple as that. The book you are holding in your hand is checked out to you.

Don't have a phone? No problem. You can also use our mobile app in a Web browser: http://crrl.boopsie.com/m/

Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 by David Petersen

Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 by David Peterson

It started as a a funny, little notion scrawled of a piece of scrap paper. "Mice have a culture all their own; Too small to integrate with other animals." Over the past decade, David Petersen's throwaway thought has emerged into a beautifully vivid adventure series that combines breathtaking action with gorgeous artwork. That series starts with Mouse Guard: Fall 1152.

The Mouse Guard are essentially wandering knights who serve a widespread kingdom. Mice have many natural predators and the guard has been established to protect citizens and keep the peace. But the kingdom is not simply threatened by snakes and owls. There are also enemies within.

iPad Mini Review

iPad mini review

The iPad mini is awesome.  You can read on if you like, but just know that this is a tech purchase you probably will not regret.  With its slim size, diminutive weight, and full-sized iPad technology, the iPad mini is a winner with few drawbacks.  

Philosophically I approve more of Google’s open source Android than I do Apple’s closed-off iOS.  I also am not a fan of iOS devices’ lack of centralized file storage and exploration. But really, there’s no denying that Apple knows how to build a tablet that overcomes these issues.  The mini is 0.28 inches thick, 7.87 inches tall, 5.5 inches wide, and weighs only 0.68 pounds.  The front of the mini is entirely glass with a diamond-cut edge that fits snuggly into an anodized aluminum unibody that comes in both slate and silver.  The left and right bezel of the device have been narrowed significantly; at times this can make holding the device in portrait mode slightly awkward, but not as much as you might think thanks to its surprising lightness.  Apple is king when it comes to rolling out devices that are a pleasure to hold and the mini is no exception; you will not believe how light and thin it really is until you hold one.