Tag Archives: Cybrarians

More than your Grandmother’s Library…


I bet this picture is what you imagine libraries are like. You would not be alone. It’s not unusual for people to walk into our building, (newly constructed in 2006), and be shocked! It’s not just the bright, modern, physical building that amazes them. It’s our collection. It’s what a 21st century library offers. We are often  asked questions like:

  • Can you take out the DVD’s?
  • You have music? Can I take it out?
  • Can anyone use the computers?
  • Do you have WiFi?

The answer, of course is yes, yes, and yes! We have for years and it’s all free! What they don’t ask, because I suspect, they can’t even image what a 21st century library could offer is:

  • Do you circulated eBooks or Audiobooks?
  • Do you circulate eReaders?
  • Can I access Encyclopedia Britannica from home? Online? For free?
  • Do you have Music I can download from home?
  • Do you have computer and technical ebooks I can use from home?

Again, yes, yes, and YES!!! The library offers 24/7 services. Though it would be cost prohibitive to have the physical building open those hours, we do offer online services that you can access with your library card just by going to our website www.dracutlibrary.org .

Overdrive allows you to download eBooks or audiobook – for free. You don’t need to pay Amazon prices – check us out instead.

Encyclopedia Britannica is also available for free. It’s not that black bound tomb of a book you or your parents remember either! It’s a colorful teaching-education tool! Broken down by age group and ability, Britannica Online has some pretty nifty features like illustrations you can use for projects, maps, videos, and games.

And did you say you wanted free music? Try Freegal – download music with your library card. Oh, and did we tell you get to keep the music you download? All you need is your library card!

Have you been looking for the most up-to-date computer books but don’t want to pay the $50 or more? Did you know you can access these books from Safari Books Online? Safari Books offer an “online collection of over 3,000 computer and technical ebooks, covering programming, design, desktop publishing, ecommerce, online business, hardware and more, from publishers such as O’Reilly, Wiley, Pretence Hall, and many more.” It too, is free with your library card.

We are always trying to keep up with our community needs. We offer free movie showing, author talks, writing groups, children’s programs…the truth is, I could go on and on! We recently started a baking section which includes cake pans which you can check out – again for free. So far, our circulating cake pan collection has been a great success! We understand that not everyone can afford to purchase items they may only use once. That’s why we encourage you to get and use your library card. The truth is, if you haven’t been to a library lately, you really haven’t been to a LIBRARY!


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Getting started in genealogy

You may have seen our post last week about our upcoming Genealogy Workshop on April 28th. (you can register here) We want you to start getting the feel for how easy it can be to trace your family roots. So this week we’re introducing you to The Genealogy Forum Beginner’s Center. There you can ask questions, download printable forms or post to the site’s message board. It’s a place to begin, and so are WE! Feel free to come to the library – ask questions and explore the resources we have that you probably didn’t even know existed!
Explore. Learn. Grow. Know. It’s what LIBRARY is all about!

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Technology finding Time

Sometimes, ideas need time to catch on. In other cases, they just need time for the technology to develop so that they can become a reality. The Technologizer (an easy to read online technology magazine) in partnership with Time.com, has come up with a list of 15 Gadgets That Were Way Ahead of Their Time. Among the gadgets (if you can believe anything like this could ever exist!) are a 40,000 page books that would be 2 inches think and weigh a pound; an automobile wireless telephone and DYI home TV tape recorder kit. The article is fun and the pictures priceless! In the process, you may just want to look around the site and see what other great articles they have!

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Getting to your Roots

Have you ever wondered about your family tree? Are you interested in learning more about genealogy; tracing your family history;  learning about books and databases you can access from home? Then join us on Thursday, April 28th from 2-3:30pm when we will host a free workshop to get you started. Think you want to start exploring now? Then drop by the library and we will direct you to our genealogy section which includes many new titles brimming with information! Check back to our blog & Facebook page in the coming months for more genealogy tricks and tips!!!

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I spy eBooks!

Did you just get a new Kindle,  Nook or iPad? Are you looking for eBooks from a variety of sources? We invite you to take advantage of Overdrive from MVLC! Think of Overdrive as your virtual library: a free service that allows you to download eBooks 24/7 just like you would if you came to your brink and mortar library.

Of course there are other sources as well. I recently stumbled upon eBookFling billed as the next Netflix for ebooks. Give them both a try and let use know what you think! We’re always interested in sharing sources and sites you have found that are fun, useful and informative!

BookSwim, has launched a new website that it’s calling the “the Netflix for Books” called eBookFling.com. The site lets readers virtually “swap” eBooks using the Kindle and Nook lending features. The service is free and it only takes a second to sign up. Once you sign up, the site asks you to list eBooks in your library that you would like to share, pointing out that “sharing is caring.” You can import from either Kindle or Nook. Then you can browse titles to borrow from other users.

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Tally Ho!

We live in the golden age of knowledge (or trivia depending on how you look at it). Museums and national libraries are well aware of our nano second needs and so the British Library has launched (you guessed it) an app for that! If you use a device which uses the iOS (Apple) or Android operating system you can have the world at your finger tips.

The British Library, custodian of some of the most treasured documents in the world, has produced an iOS and Android app featuring over 100 of the library’s most significant items including the world’s oldest bible Codex Sinaiticus, Galileo’s letters and Leonardo Da Vinci’s notebooks.

As well as high-resolution images, the app provides expert commentary on many of the items and users can watch, for example, linguist David Crystal discussing the 1,000 year old poem Beowulf.

Key historical documents include 2000-year-old Oracle Bones from China and an original Magna Carta of 1215. The section devoted to music includes manuscript scores from some of the best-known classical composers, such as Handel, Purcell, Mozart and Schubert, alongside hand-written lyrics by The Beatles.

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You can quote me on that!

Sometimes we just need some words of wisdom to help enrich a paper, speech or special occasion toast. Or maybe just a movie and TV quotes to stump our friends online. WikiQuote.org is a wonderful resource to find sourced quotes from people, literature, movies even epitaphs and last words. Once you start exploring WikiQuote you may not be able to stop!

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And the name of the book is…???

Okay, I’ll admit my brain cells aren’t getting any younger. That’s why when I was directed to Book Sleuth I was overjoyed! Yes, finally an external hard drive for my old librarian brain! This is from the Book Sleuth website:

Is there a special book that you read, or perhaps had read to you, at some point in your life but you can’t remember the author and title? Perhaps you know the plot, or a character, or maybe even what the front cover looks like. BookSleuth® is here to help you find that book! Simply post a short description of what you can remember here on our board. Visitors from all over the world will read your post, and one of them is bound to know exactly what you’re talking about and post a response. Not missing anything? Why not see if you can help anyone else find their long-lost books?

See what I mean?! You have to love these folks!

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Fiction on a high note

Sometimes even the librarians get stumped. I happened to be entering a novel, when the genre popped up as “musical fiction”.  So I asked the staff: “What is musical fiction??? I was met with a lot of blank looks. Not to be deterred I went searching…

Turns out Wikipedia describes musical fiction as:

“a genre of fiction in which music is paramount: both as subject matter, and through the rhythm and flow of the prose; that is, music is manifested through the language itself.”

Notable authors who have written musical fiction include Janet Evanovich, John Irving, Jack Kerouac, Robert Tannenbaum, and local author Andre Dubus III. Follow the links below for listing of works considered to be music to you ears (& eyes!).


University of Washington Libraries

Morton Grove Library’s WEBRARY

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Library Thing

Are you a self-confessed book lover? Do you go into crisis – a book withdrawal if you will – at the very thought that you have nothing to read over the weekend? Do you go on vacation and suddenly find yourself in a book store or library? Do you have a system so you can remember what you’ve read? Piles of index cards? A spiral notebook full of ‘what I’ve read’ notes?

Well, I think we may have a website to help you organize your literary life. Let us introduce you to LibraryThing! Now you can become your own cataloger through this social networking site. What do you need to know about LibraryThing? From their website,  you can do the following (and let us know how you like it!):

  • Join the world’s largest book club.
  • Catalog your books from Amazon, the Library of Congress and 690 other world libraries. Import from anywhere.
  • Find people with eerily similar tastes.
  • Find new books to read.
  • Free Early Reviewer books from publishers and authors
  • Enter 200 books for free, as many as you like for $10 (year) or $25 (life).

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