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Off The Tech Topic Posting

I came a cross a neat article today that has nothing what-so-ever to do with technology except perhaps for the fact that I read it in the online version of the New York Times.

The article is actually an interview with Herman Wouk the 97 year old author who wrote, among other popular works, The Winds of War, War and Remembrance and Marjorie Morningstar.

And Mr. Wouk has a new book out! The book is called the Lawgiver and it will be on the library’s next book order.

And that Mr. Wouk at age 97 has a new book is cool!

And I hope that I am as spry as he is when I get to be 97 – fingers crossed of course!

Here’s the link to the New York Times interview titled At 97, He Has a Book (or Two) Left in Him:

Linda R.

Tech Events @ The Library This Week: Holiday Planning & Try It Before You Buy It

Wednesday, November 14, 2012:

Wednesday One Hour Tech Workshop: Holiday Planning.
Time: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Learn how to plan your holiday party- electronically with assistance from apps and websites. Registration is required. Register in person or by phone (607)936-3713 ext. 502.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Evening Tech Workshop: Try before you buy
Time: 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Stop in the try e-readers, iPads and tablets before you decide what to buy as a holiday gift even if you’re looking to buy a new e-reader or tablet for yourself!

Staff will be on hand to answer questions you may have about these devices.

Additionally of note, the library offers free one-on-one tech usage instruction sessions so if you buy a new tablet or e-reader and have questions about how to use it – you can call and make an appointment to sit down and go over your questions with a member or our tech staff.

Have a great afternoon everyone!

Linda R.

Get A FREE E-Book By Local Author Jacqueline Horsfall Via The Library’s Website

In honor of Election Day local author Jacqueline Horsfall is offering her new e-book First Girl Last for free through Amazon. The story follows a teenage girl and her twenty-something slacker brother who become leaders of the Free World!

To get the book you simply visit our website and click the link on our homepage – here’s the link:

Interested in the e-book but don’t own a Kindle? Read on!

Did You Know You Can Read Kindle E-Books On Smartphones & Tablets?

You can!

There are Kindle apps for most tablets and smart phones including the iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch and Android smart phones and tablets like the Droid Razor and Galaxy Tab  – so if  you “buy” (and you do have to click the “buy” button even though the e-book is free!) the free e-book First Girl Last from Amazon you’ll be able to send it to your iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch or Android smart phone or tablet to read it – you just have to download the Kindle app from your app store first!

And Did You Further Know You Can Read Kindle E-Books (or for that matter free library e-books) on a PC or Mac?

You can!

You can actually download software from the Amazon site that will allow you to open any Kindle e-books you’ve purchased on your laptop or desktop!

And for the sake of convenience – here are the links:

Click here to download the Kindle software for your PC:

And click here to download the Kindle software for your Mac:

And in relation, to read free library e-books on your smart phone or tablet look for the OverDrive Media Console app from your app store!

And if you have questions about how to read Kindle e-books on devices other than Kindles or regarding how to get the OverDrive Media Console app set up on your device – so you can read free library e-books – ask the library staff! We’ve got a tech staff ready to assist you with any tech usage questions you might have – so please ask us!

Have a great day!

Linda R.

Amazon Prime Goes Monthly & Sony E-Books App Approved by Apple

Amazon Prime Goes Monthly: As you may already know Amazon has been offering a service called Prime for quite a while. The service offers subscribers unlimited streaming of videos from Amazon’s Prime Video library to their PC, Mac, iPad, smartphone or TV (via a media streaming box like Roku or through the TV directly if you have a Smart TV); free access to one e-book a month from Amazon’s Prime Lending Library, free second day shipping for any item purchased from Amazon and $3.99 over night shipping for any item purchased from Amazon.

Prior to this week a subscription to prime costs $79 per year and was paid annually in one lump sum; but now you can subscribe to Amazon Prime and pay $7.99 a month. And it is certainly not a coincidence that Amazon has done this since both Netflix and Hulu Plus streaming (video) subscriptions are also available for $7.99 per month.

Here’s a link to a CNET article on this subject titled Amazon eyes Netflix, Hulu with $7.99-per-month Prime plan:

 Sony E-Books App Approved by Apple: And you may by wondering what I am talking about with this one! Sony has offered e-book readers for years. And in fact, Sony had e-book readers on the market in the U.S. in 2005 so their e-readers were on the market before the first iPad came out in 2010 and even before the first Kindle was introduced by Amazon in 2007. And anyone who first purchased a Sony E-Reader (usually known as Sony Readers) and later purchased an iPad or iPhone knows there hasn’t been a Sony Reader app available in Apples App store previously – so those of us who purchased Sony Readers and later upgraded to iPads or iPhones couldn’t read our Sony purchased e-books on our iPads; this has now changed! Hurray! There is finally a Sony e-reader app available for free from Apple’s App Store! The app is titled Reader – eBooks from Sony and is free. So anyone else out there who also has an old Sony E-Reader can now access their Sony purchased e-books on their iPad , iPhone or iPod Touch and donated that old Sony Reader they still have to one of their friends or relatives!

CNET has a story on this subject titled Sony finally gets Apple approval for iOS Reader app which can be accessed via the following link:

Have a great election day everyone!

Linda R.

Interesting & Fun NPR Article On Pay Phone Use In New York

NPR has an interesting and fun article on their website today titled Pay Phones Are Suddenly Important Again Because Of Sandy. The article is fun because of a typo – and as NPR may well catch the typo and revise the text before you read it – here is what the caption currently says under the photo on the NPR technology page – as of 9:55 EST Saturday morning (11-3-12)  it reads: “As some New Yorkers try to stay connected with others, they’ve had to search for pay phones because their cellphones have run out of juice. Question: When was the last time you sued a pay phone?”

Now I don’t know about anyone else but I can’t honestly say that I have ever sued a pay phone.

I’ve never encountered a pay phone that was threatening in any way or in the least bit obnoxious or condescending.

The worst that can be said of any pay phones that I have ever encountered is that I occasionally encountered one that didn’t work or was one that was inconvenient located on the other side of the street.

However, I have never sued a pay phone! How about you?

Here is the link to the NPR Technology page with its charming “sue a pay phone” caption:

And pasted below is the link to the article itself – which is interesting as it illustrates the point that technological advancement has sped up and really changed our lives in last ten years. And indeed, I can’t remember the last time I used a pay phone but I’d guess it was back in the pre-cell phone days of the 1990s.

And as much as I love technology I do have to say Hurricane and then Storm Sandy gave me pause; because, like many people I didn’t even have a battery operated radio in the house – and if the power had gone out in the City of Corning I’d really have been in the dark.

I do think we should all purchase battery operated radios (and change the batteries in them when we put new batteries in our smoke detectors) and pick up a copy of The New Way Things Work book by David Macaulay just in case we need to operate without electricity for any length of time!

Have a great day!

Linda R.

And as a post script – since that NPR article on cell phone usage in New York City after Hurricane Sandy was rather brief – albeit humorous – here’s a link to a longer New York Times article on the same subject titled Cellphone Users Steaming at Hit-or-Miss Service:



The New Boxee TV Media Streaming Player

The Boxee is another media streaming player like the Roku player and the Apple TV. The Boxee box connects to your TV and the Internet and then allows you to stream video via channel apps including Netflix, Pandora, MLB.TV (baseball) and Vudu (The Walmart streaming service). And now Boxee has updated its device and dropped the price of it to $99 and included two huge new perks – a built in antenna which should allow you to easily stream free over-the-air channels (i.e. basic channels: ABC, NBC, CBS & PBS)  to your TV and a free & unlimited cloud based DVR service* – meaning that you can record shows shown on ABC, NBC, CBS & PBS storm them in the cloud and watch them whenever you want to – with no limit as to how many shows you can store to watch later. Now that last perk – the cloud based DVR with unlimited storage perk is free in and of itself but does require you to pay a $14 monthly fee to gain access to the program guide which will allow you to record shows. So in essence it does cost $14 for the service in the areas in which it is available and so far those areas are major urban areas including New York City and Los Angeles. However, I think the introduction of this new Boxee box is cool for two reasons 1. Because it allows cord cutters to easily access the TV networks free of charge by simply setting up the box and 2. Because it shows how fast the technology is advancing and how in the future we are likely to pay less money to access an ever increasing amount of television shows, movies and other audio and video content.

Oh and I left out one other important accessibility item – this new Boxee box will be sold in one brick and mortar store only – Walmart! So the next time you’re at Walmart, and waiting for someone else in your family, you might stop in the TV section and check it out!

Here are links to three articles/reviews on the subject:

The first from CNET titled Wal-Mart to start selling Boxee TV set-top box:

The second from the Daily Finance (written by Rick Aristotle Munarriz, The Motley Fool) titled Boxee TV: Walmart Wants You to See It; Your Cable Provider Doesn’t:

And the third a general review from CNET tilted $99 Boxee TV records over-the-air television to the cloud — but requires monthly fee:

* The cloud based DVR service with unlimited storage is rolling out in just a few cities now but will be rolling out in more in 2013. The service is not currently available in our area – just FYI…

Have a great day!

Linda R.