Blogs

Google REALLY wants to get personal:

Today, I'm not discussing a cool new search tool. Instead, here's an article in the The Financial Times. Google wants more and more information about you.

The company's CEO Eric Schmidt, talking to reporters in London, said, "We cannot even answer the most basic questions because we don’t know enough about you. That is the most important aspect of Google’s expansion."

Astronomer: Fun with GPS

I've been having fun with a new "toy." A nice little handheld GPS (global positioning system) receiver bought at a bargain price at a local big box store. Following my progress on the scrolling map image during a morning commute made the trip a lot more fun.
Photo: Magellan eXplorist 210 product shot.

Surprising to me was how quickly the GPS was able to update and display my travel speed as I drove. After all, the little palm-sized unit was receiving signals from several orbiting satellites a little more than 12,000 miles high, comparing their time signals, calculating my position in three dimensions and its rate of change, and displaying it on a little LCD screen, all with only a couple of seconds lag time! And, optimally, to within about 10 feet of my exact location. Following travel progress on the unit's built-in map was fun (for map geeks like me) but a little too distracting if you're driving. I'm looking forward to my next stint as a passenger!

World War II digital library

Historic Government Publications from World War II is a digital library that contains scanned images of actual documents from World War II.

The images can be viewed on the site, or downloaded.

One can browse through the collection, or search by keyword.

Click here to see a digitized booklet on 4-H.

Rollyo--"Roll Your Own Search Engine"

Rollyo enables you to build your own search engine.

How it works:
Build a "searchroll."
A searchroll is a list of sites that you trust. Add all of the Websites on a given topic that you want to the roll. You can assign a general category for the roll, and apply "tags" to describe the topic.

Share searchrolls with others
Other people can search your searchrolls, and you can search theirs to discover new Websites about topics that are important to you.

Astronomer: Encyclopedia of Life is born

Many of the world's leading scientific institutions announced the May 9 launch of the Encyclopedia of Life, an unprecedented global effort to document all 1.8 million named species of animals, plants, and other forms of life on Earth. For the first time in the history of the planet, scientists, students, and citizens will have multi-media access to all known living species, even those that have just been discovered.

"The Encyclopedia of Life will provide valuable biodiversity and conservation information to anyone, anywhere, at any time," said Dr. James Edwards, currently Executive Secretary of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility.

Midomi: search for songs by singing

Midomi is a cool music search tool. If you have a microphone hooked up to your computer, you can sing or hum part of a tune in order to find a song. Your recordings become part of the database.

Midomi is also a community of music fans, for any music genre. You can rate other users' recordings, too.

Astronomy Day 2007

Saturday, April 21 is Astronomy Day. Across the U.S. and in other countries special programs and activities will emphasize humanity's place among the stars.

Greater Clevelanders are fortunate to have one of the most interesting affairs of the day; that's thanks to a cooperative effort between a local science center, an area astronomy club, and NASA.

Celebrate Astronomy Day and learn more about the wonders of the universe from 10 AM to 11 PM during the annual "Star Gazing" extravaganza at NASA Glenn's Visitor Center. If the sky is clear an after-dark "star party" will feature views of celestial objects through telescopes set up at NASA Glenn by their astronomy club owners.

"Star Gazing" is presented in partnership with the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center's Walter R. Schuele Planetarium, the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association, and the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Solar System Ambassadors.

Admission is free. Access to the center is limited to U.S. citizens and adult visitors must present a government-issued photo identification to enter. Vehicles and bags are subject to inspection.

For more information about the NASA Glenn event, including times for talks and programs, visit: http://glennevents.grc.nasa.gov

The Cleveland Museum of Natural History will also have special programming and exhibits observing Astronomy Day. Hours: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. See their site for program and admission details.

Just the Facts: Need a dentist?

Looking for a dentist? You could use our database Reference USA or you could look at the database of dentists maintained by the Ohio State Dental Board at www.dental.ohio.gov. Click on "licensure verification." At the next screen you can check the licensing date, education, and area of practice of a particular dentist or you could generate a list of licensed dentists in a specific geographic area.

Just the Facts: Get Human

If you're tired of coping with endless phone trees, take a look at www.gethuman.com and see if the company you're trying to communicate with is listed. If it is, you'll find specific instructions to be able to talk to a human being. The companies are categorized. If you prefer to skim an alphabetical listing, click on "alphabetical listing for printing."

Mail warning: sign out!

Image: Yahoo! logo registered trademark


Don't let strangers read your mail!

Yahoo! Mail users are now offered the option to "Keep me signed in for 2 weeks unless I sign out." This can be a real problem for users of public PCs like those we offer at this library.

Unless you sign out of Yahoo! Mail, the next person to visit Yahoo! sitting at the same PC you used will find your account completely open!