Thursday, October 30, 2014

NANOvember Family Day - Saturday, November 22

The CNSE Children’s Museum of Science and Technology will open its doors at no cost during this event that will give attendees an exciting hands-on adventure into the world of nanotechnology. Families will be able to experience nanotechnology exhibits and other hands-on activities, including the reading of a science-focused story followed by the chance for visitors to explore concepts related to size by using a tiny ruler and scented balloons. Children will also be able to engage in activities that showcase nature-inspired applications of nanotechnology.

Pre-register for NANOvember events

This is part of the annual month-long celebration of Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) showcasing the exciting world of nanotechnology and the global leadership of CNSE and NYS in the most important science of the 21st century!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Librarians say fines are incentive, but results are positive where payments have disappeared

A wave of libraries across the nation stopped charging late fees in the 1990s, but the trend never found a foothold in the Capital Region. Two tiny libraries — Poestenkill is the other one — are the only public libraries in the area without fines.

Several local librarians dream of dropping fines, but have not.

Here's the truth about late fines: They raise money for libraries, and they motivate procrastinators to return their books.

Those dimes and quarters add up.

Late fines generated $720,000 for Capital Region libraries in 2013, according to figures libraries provided to the Times Union.

More from the Times Union.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Elementary School Replaces Desks With “Reading Bikes” And Student Test Scores Skyrocket

Ward Elementary School in Winston-Salem, North Carolina has found the formula for effective — and healthy — learning. Five years ago, the school began their ingenious Read and Ride program where one classroom in the school was filled up with donated exercise bikes for the students to use while they read… Turns out that this has been the catalyst for some real changes in how the students measure up academically.

More from InspireMore

There's also a discussion going on at Reddit.

NASA Posts a Huge Library of Space Sounds, And You’re Free To Use Them

Space is the place. Again.

And SoundCloud is now a place you can find sounds from the US government space agency, NASA. In addition to the requisite vocal clips ("Houston, we've had a problem" and "The Eagle has landed"), you get a lot more. There are rocket sounds, the chirps of satellites and equipment, lightning on Jupiter, interstellar plasma and radio emissions. And in one nod to humanity, and not just American humanity, there’s the Soviet satellite Sputnik (among many projects that are international in nature).

Many of these sounds were available before... But putting them on SoundCloud makes them much easier to browse and find, and there are download links...

Another thing: you’re free to use all of these sounds as you wish, because NASA’s own audio isn't copyrighted. It’s meant to be a public service to the American people of their taxpayer-funded government program, but that extends to everyone.

More from Created Digital Music.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Public forum for Albany school board candidates Monday

A reminder that the second of two public forums for this year's school board candidates will be held Monday at 7 p.m. at the Pine Hills branch of the Albany Public Library.
Four candidates are seeking two seats in the Nov. 4 elections. Visit the district website for more information. Monday's forum is sponsored by the Montessori Community Council (Montessori Magnet School's version of a parent-teacher association).
You also can visit the Times Union website for coverage of the first candidates' forum Oct. 22.

Nanovember: CNSE Community Day November 1

The Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) will hold its annual month-long celebration showcasing the exciting world of nanotechnology and the global leadership of CNSE and NYS in the most important science of the 21st century!

CNSE Community Day
Saturday, November 1, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Receive an up-close look at the world of nanotechnology as CNSE invites residents of the Capital Region and New York State to tour its Albany NanoTech Complex. Similar events are being held in Utica and Rochester. Pre-registration is available on the event website.

Thursday, October 23, 2014


Libraries and library staff provide essential services for schools, universities, and communities. Americans use libraries for free, reliable, and organized access to books, the Internet, and other sources of information and entertainment; assistance finding work; research and reference assistance; and programs for children, immigrants, and other groups with specific needs, just to name a few.

This fact sheet explores: library staff in the workforce, diversity within the professions, educational attainment of library workers, the role of women in the professions, issues of pay and pay equity, and the union difference for library staff.

An Overview of Library Professionals and Libraries

 In 2013, there were 194,000 librarians, 39,000 library technicians, and 87,000 library assistants. Generally, the definition of “librarian” is a person who holds at least a master’s degree in library science or meets state teaching license standards for being a school librarian.
“Library technicians” assist librarians in the acquisition, preparation, and organization of materials “and assist users in locating the appropriate resources.”
“Library assistants” are similar to library technicians, but may have fewer responsibilities.

 From 2007 through 2013, library employment among librarians and library technicians and assistants shrank from 380,000 to 320,000.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Invitation - Keeping the Promise of Pre-K: Using Technology to Ensure Quality

The Rockefeller Institute of Government of SUNY and ReadyNation New York invite you to a forum entitled Keeping the Promise of Pre-K: Using Technology to Ensure Quality on Wednesday, November 12, 2014,from 11 a.m. ---- 1 p.m. at the Rockefeller Institute, 411 State Street in Albany. The event is free and open to the public and parking is provided.

High-quality Pre-K has demonstrated significant individual and societal benefits, including an economic return on investment, increased high school graduation rates, reduced criminal activity, and improved health outcomes. This forum will explore the role of policy and technology in ensuring that New York State continues to provide Pre-K services ---- and design an early learning system ---- in an effective and sustainable way, to achieve the best results.

The Keynote address will be delivered by NYS State Education Department Commissioner John B. King, Jr.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Scholar, courtier, magician to Queen Elizabeth I: the lost library of John Dee

January – July 2016

A major exhibition revealing the fascinating life, times and lost library of Queen Elizabeth I’s most famous ‘conjurer’.

John Dee (1527–1609) is one of the most intriguing characters of 16th century England. A member of the Elizabethan court, he is infamous for his attempts to make contact with other-worldly spirits and his study and practice of alchemy. He was also a mathematician and scholar of navigation, a founding fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, a university lecturer on rhetoric, and an astrologer.

Dee’s library was one of the most famous collections of books and manuscripts of its time, as renowned for its contents as for the fact it was pillaged and dispersed while Dee was travelling in Europe during the 1580s.

More from the Royal College of Physicians.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Batman’s 75th Anniversary Celebration at Albany Public Library branches

BatmanThis year marks the 75th anniversary of the birth of Batman! We love comic books and graphic novels, and we are celebrating this cool event in geek culture with some fun programs featuring the Dark Knight:


Our very own comics expert and all around smart and awesome guy, Gene Kannenberg, will present a highly illustrated look back at the Caped Crusader's many pop culture incarnations over the past 75 years. All ages, but might be best for kids in grades 3 and up, teens, and adults. You have two opportunities to check it out:

Thursday, October 23 | 4-5PM | Howe Branch
Friday, October 24 | 4-5PM | Pine Hills Branch

Also at our Pine Hills Branch, we've got some fun activities for kids and teens:

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Why Your Library May Soon Have Laser Cutters and 3-D Printers

But what about books? Public Library Association research shows that people have checked out slightly fewer materials in recent years. And Pew found that about a third of patrons are opposed to makerspaces if they displace books. But while I'm just as sentimental about the primacy of hard copy, the librarians aren't. As they all tell me, their job is helping with access to knowledge—not all of which comes in codex form and much of which is deeply social. Libraries aren't just warehouses for documents; they're places to exchange information...

You have to give the librarians credit. Stereotype says they're fusty, but the reality is absolutely the opposite. Over and over they've adapted to new information tools, from microfiche to CD-ROMs to the Internet. Now this—possibly the best example I've seen of how a storied institution embraces change.

More from WIRED.

Friday, October 17, 2014

20th Congressional District Forum October 28

Meet the candidates Paul Tonko (Democrat, Independence , Working Families) and Jim Fischer (Republican, Conservative) on Tuesday, October 28 from 7 to 8:30 pm at Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School, on 100 Elbel Court, in Albany.

Candidate Night Sponsors: The Albany Branch of the NAACP, League of Women Voters of Albany County, George Biddle Kelly Education Foundation, Capital Area Urban League, Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations, Capital Area Council of Churches, and The Reform Jewish Voice of New York State

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Librarians on the vanguard of the anti-surveillance movement

The American Library Association's code of ethics demands that library professionals "protect each library user's right to privacy and confidentiality" and they've been taking that duty seriously since the first days of the Patriot Act.

The history of libraries in the post-9/11 fight is a proud and honorable one, with librarians putting their jobs and honor on the line to stand up for the right of people to conduct intellectual inquiry without government surveillance, and to stand against secret wiretaps that come with perpetual gag orders.

More from BoingBoing.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Albany City School Board of Education in forum on October 22 and 27

This year's candidates for the Albany City School Board of Education will participate in a school board forum on Wednesday, October 22 from 6-7:30 p.m. at Stephen and Harriet Myers Middle School. Four candidates are seeking two seats in the November elections – Kenneth Bruce, Edith Leet, Sharon Rowe and Anne Savage.
Forum Sponsors- The Albany City Council Parent Teacher Association (ACCPTA) Albany Branch of the NCAAP, League of Women Voters of Albany County, George Biddle Kelly Education Foundation, Capital Area Urban League, Council of Albany Neighborhood Associations (CANA), Capital Area Council of Churches, and Reform Jewish Voice of New York State.

If you miss that one, the school board candidates will present again on Monday, October 27 at 7 pm at the Pine Hills Library.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Can't find your rutabaga?

Perhaps it will turnip at the Farmers' Market, Tuesdays, 4 to 7 pm behind the Delaware Avenue branch of the Albany Public Library, 331 Delaware Ave. We know you will find greens, apples, squash, garlic, eggs, tomatoes, potatoes, honey, jam, pumpkins. This week Bungelow Bakery will make a special visit with cookies, breads and something gluten-free. WIC coupons and EBT cards welcome. If you use your EBT card, you get a coupon for more nutritious affordable food. Next Tuesday, the market hours will shift earlier to 3 to 6 pm.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Friends of the Albany Public Library programs for Tuesdays at noon in October, November and December 2014

All events at the 161 Washington Avenue branch in the auditorium. Light refreshments provided

October 14—Book Review—Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty. Reviewer: Paul Hohenberg, PhD, professor of economics, RPI.

October 21—Author Talk—Josh Ruebner discusses his book Shattered Hopes: Obama’s Failure to Broker Israeli-Palestinian Peace.

October 28—Book Review—The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumphs by Ryan Holiday & Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. Reviewer: Scott C. Jarzombek, MLS, Director, Albany Public Library.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Writer Paul Pines at Albany Public Library, November 8

Please Join The Friends of the Albany Public Library for the Fall Book & Author Event

Saturday, November 8, 2014
Main Auditorium, Albany Public Library, 161 Washington Avenue,
Albany – 1:30 p.m.

Speaker: Paul Pines

PaulPinesDivine Madness

Friday, October 03, 2014

2016 Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Now Open

The Diversity Immigrant Visa (DV) Program, also known as the Green Card Lottery, makes a limited number of immigrant visas available every year to people meeting certain eligibility requirements. If you have family members or friends living outside the U.S. who would like to enter the lottery, here’s what they should know:

The 2016 DV lottery registration period will run from October 1 to November 3, 2014.
To participate in the lottery:

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Science Has Great News for People Who Read Actual Books

It's no secret that reading is good for you. Just six minutes of reading is enough to reduce stress by 68%, and numerous studies have shown that reading keeps your brain functioning effectively as you age. One study even found that elderly individuals who read regularly are 2.5 times less likely to develop Alzheimer's than their peers. But not all forms of reading are created equal.

The debate between paper books and e-readers has been vicious since the first Kindle came out in 2007. Most arguments have been about the sentimental versus the practical, between people who prefer how paper pages feel in their hands and people who argue for the practicality of e-readers. But now science has weighed in, and the studies are on the side of paper books.

Reading in print helps with comprehension.

A 2014 study found that readers of a short mystery story on a Kindle were significantly worse at remembering the order of events than those who read the same story in paperback. Lead researcher Anne Mangen of Norway's Stavanger University concluded that "the haptic and tactile feedback of a Kindle does not provide the same support for mental reconstruction of a story as a print pocket book does."