Roving Reporter: A Traveler’s Spinning Inspiration: My Handspun Yarn Journal

Article Written By: Kate Larson

This is a great way of making sure that a time you enjoyed stays with you and if you want to create a piece of that to keep with you then these are amazing steps to help you along that path.

From taking your own photos, grabbing pamphlets, and keeping with it this short article is chock-full of tips on how to improve your fiber inspiration journals.  There is a great follow-up article that includes a finished inspiration page to…well inspire you:



Teaching Newsletter: One Way to Fight Fake News

This article brings up several good points about fighting ‘fake news’, and what we do versus what we tell students to do.  This article does encourage teachers, librarians, and other individuals helping to teach about information literacy, to think about how we do research and identify legitimate sources versus how we teach students to do the same.

The rest of the article encourages being more open to the students and meeting them where they are; time, technology, need, etc; to better serve their information needs.  I do see several pros and cons to this take on service.  It does make us, as professionals/experts, more accessible to students.  However I have noticed through experience the more accessible we are, the more we try to turn ourselves inside out to help, the less our time and help are valued.


Leading the Green Revolution Library Sustainability

This article begins by discussing proposals such as composting books that are to be weeded, providing outlets for electric cars and so many more eco-friendly options to improving libraries.  *I, frankly, think some of them are a little too extreme.  If you have a compost pile already on your campus, then yes, shred books and add them to the communal pile.  If not, then I do not think it is responsible to encourage rodents and other pests to the campus.*

I do appreciate the end of the article, I believe that solar panels might be a way for libraries to both become green and save the taxpayers money in the long run.

Fascinating article, well worth reading.

Mississippi School District Pulls “To Kill a Mockingbird”…

This is an interesting article describing why “To Kill a Mockingbird” was removed as an active curriculum book.  The theory is that  compassion can be taught from a wide variety of materials that do not have the side effect of containing language that makes people uncomfortable.   The book has not been removed from the shelves in the library, it simply is not a book that students are compelled to read.

*I have mixed feelings about this decision.  I do understand that people are uncomfortable when faced with the institutionalized racism that occurred in the past.  Some harsh language can be very hard to take simply because it was so common back then and since we have understood how truly evil that sort of thinking is the language becomes abhorrent.  On the other hand, by not being exposed to abhorrent things we will never learn to recognize how truly horrible such things are.  Maybe by learning early that some things just aren’t meant to be said we can eradicate the “F-Bomb”; “Cracker”; “Breeders” and other currently acceptable slurs from our language.  While the truth of this next statement appalls me, People have to find someone who is different from themselves and put them down in order to feel better about themselves.  Perhaps if we could live in a world where someone didn’t find a name to call someone else, then it would be alright to avoid all difficult topics.  However, we do not, so we should consider exposing our children to some harshness before they grow up unable to cope with life.*

Alexa, Google Home and Smart Phones Could Make Illiteracy Unimportant

*I don’t know if this concept is useful or terrifying*

This article does begin by telling it like it is, Google wants Alexa in your home so that you get used to shopping just by talking to it.  There is a paragraph of the article that discusses how every conversation we have with our digital devices allows that device to learn a little more about human speech patterns.

There is some thought to the belief that this is taking us back to where speech controls our creativity rather than writing.  Essentially writing is an artificial construct, whereas speech is more natural.  This will allow individuals that are functionally illiterate to be able to better interact with the literate world.

Also, it allows some affectations to influence other aspects of society.  For example, many new bands have come to the realization that it is best if they have a name that people can pronounce.

*This should prove to be interesting, will this be an evolution or a devolution of society?*

Augmented Reality?

Augmented Reality is where you still see the real world but other aspects of the virtual world are superimposed on the real world.  This is different from the virtual world where the real world is replaced by what ever digital information you are seeing.

Ikea Place is one of the first augmented reality apps, While there are issues this app does allow you to place furniture in your living room and obtain an idea of the size and angles involved.

There is an app that allows you to drop a Porsche into your driveway, living room, etc.

There is an app that allows you to see a shark floating around in the middle of…whatever.

There is an app that allows the Very Hungry Caterpillar to come to life and live in your world, for a time.

There is a virtual tape measure, that apparently comes pretty close.

Modify your hair color virtually to see what it would look like.

Night Sky 5 allows you to see constellations, have the stars labelled, and the animal/etc. that the constellation is supposed to represent.

These are just some quick examples of what was made in the first 12 weeks of apple’s new release.  *Honestly some of them are very useful, I like the thought of not having to guess if something will look good in a space, or if there will be enough room.  Some are stupid, Yes a Porsche will look good there, but you cannot afford it after buying this device so dream on.  The Hungry Caterpillar looks like it might be useful and the future of gaming, but I am still very concerned about people getting confused about what is real and what is not.  Some people have serious trouble with that concept.*

Amazon Echo and Echo Plus

This article details the improvements and differences between the new Echo and Echo Plus.  Much of this article is spend detailing how the new difference make the speaker appear and function much like the older version.

The next section of this article begins to detail how these devices can be used as a whole home solution.

*To my way of thinking the Amazon Echo is essentially a smart home device.  Like Evernote if it is a part of every aspect of your life then it is a useful tool, if it is not immersed in every aspect of your life then it is a minor convenience.*