(November 5, 2012) November is Nation Novel Writing Month; 50,000 words in 30 days. Time to get cracking and here's some tips to help to get going. Looking for holiday gift ideas or working on a reading list for the bad weather and long nights? Publishers Weekly has just released its list of the best books of 2012, and you can see the lists from the past three years as well.
(October 29, 2012) Keep up with the latest Hurricane Sandy news at NOAA's StormCentral 2012 and the Weather Channel's Hurricane Central provides plenty of information, plus many photographs. On a lighter note, if you still haven't decided on a Halloween costume, the Smithsonian Institution is ready to help with costume ideas inspired by its collections. And get in the Halloween spirit with ten classic cartoons online for free.
(October 15, 2012) It's time to get to work on that special Halloween costume. About.com has all sorts of suggestions for costumes for all ages, as does Family Fun, and Martha Stewart. If you're feeling really ambitious check out the costume and decorating ideas at Instructables. And for frights of a different kind, check out Sunday's world record free-fall, from 128,000 feet and over 800 mph; then see news-reel of the previous record jump, from 1960!
(September 27, 2012) Wondering what Congress is up to? Take a look at Congress.gov, the new one-stop site for US legislative information. Watch the world's first color movie, from 1902! Putting up the rest of the harvest? Can safely with the USDA's Complete Guide to Home Canning and keep up on garden news with the Buckeye Yard & Garden Newsletter online.
(September 18, 2012) Observe Constitution Day this year with the interesting exhibits at the National Constitution Center. Worried about asteroids of doom? Wondering about life on other planets? Concerned about an imminent Mayan apocalypse? NASA suggests that you ask an astrobiologist. Looking for a project this fall? Why not read Moby Dick? Better yet, have an all-star line-up of actors and authors read it to you, one chapter a day.
(August 10, 2012) The World Wide Web turned 21 this week. See a recreation of that first web page, built by Tim Berners-Lee and posted on August 6, 1991. Tired of summer blockbusters? Take a look at 10 avant-garde films from the National Film Registry, all of which can be viewed on-line for free. The Mars Curiosity Rover has landed, by parachute!, lowered by a crane!, from a rocket!. Follow the mission with great daily images from Mars. And if you're feeling crafty, build a model Curiosity Rover, out of paper.
(July 31, 2012) Follow the Olympics online with ten up-to-the minute websites. Enjoyed The Hunger Games? Eagerly awaiting the DVD release? Wondering what to read next? Check out the Hunger Games Flowchart which will guide you to your next book like an arrow from a bow. There's still time to travel this summer, and if you don't want to go far, the Ohio Department of Tourism can help you see Ohio first.
(July 12, 2012) So what is the Higgs Boson and why is it important? CERN and Ars Technica have some explanations. For local Newtonian travel, remember the Ohio Department of Tourism has all sorts of information about what to see and do, and how to get there, in our state. Henry David Thoreau was born on this date in 1817; check out the online Thoreau Reader for annotated works by, and many essays about, the author.
(July 3, 2012) If you have been waiting to start your summer reading, it's time to get to it. SF Signals flowchart will help you choose just the right book from a list of the top 100 fantasy and science fiction books of all time. Would you rather catch up on the classics? This handy chart will help you choose just the right fiction or nonfiction title. Or take a look at Flashlight Worthy Books, where there are over 400 topical book lists to peruse.
(June 27, 2012) Celebrate the birthday of Ohio's own, poet Paul Laurence Dunbar, born on this date in 1872 in Dayton. Celebrate July 4 with the Library of Congress' American Memory Project and get ready for cook-outs with lots of holiday recipes and party ideas. And relive Jim Thorpe's astounding feats at the 1912 Olympics, one hundred years ago this month.
(June 8, 2012) Miss the Transit of Venus on Tuesday? Check out the spectacular video and image sequence from NASA's Solar Dynamic Observatory, We salute Ray Bradbury, friend of readers and libraries everywhere who died last week at age 91. Watch an entertaining and informative 1963 interview with the author. And it's time to Step Up to the Plate @ Your Library with this summer's baseball trivia contest from from the American Library Association and the Baseball Hall of Fame. Enter each week for a chance to win a trip for two to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
(May 29, 2012) The Golden Gate Bridge turned 75 on Sunday. See a photo essay about the bridge and read about some of the first people who crossed it. The New York Times is posting photos and images from its massive archives every day on The Lively Morgue. Newsweek is doing something similar with its Picture Dept. including both contemporary and archived images.
(March 28, 2012) The Alan Lomax archive of field recordings of traditional music are now available for online for free. Take a listen. On March 23, 1903, the Wright Brothers filed the patent for their flying machine; watch an interesting 1970 documentary about the historic aircraft and its inventors. Interested in seeing Ohio first? Plan a weekend jaunt using the Remarkable Ohio directory of all the historical markers in our state.
(March 12, 2012) Celebrate the Girl Scouts Centennial this week, and visit the Vintage Girl Scout Online Museum. This year is the bicentennial of Charles Dickens' birth, and the earliest surviving film adaptation of his work has just been found at the British Film Institute; watch it today. The warmer weather has us looking toward spring. Brush up on your weather safety knowledge with the Tornado Preparedness Guide from the National Weather Service.
March 7, 2012) Get outside this month and look up; there are five visible planets in the early night sky. In observance of the Civil War sesquicentennial, The Atlantic Magazine has published a special collection of articles and stories about the war from the archives of its own 150 year history. With the warm weather lately, it's time to think about cleaning up the garden and getting ready for spring.
(February 29, 2012) A short and entertaining video explains what a leap year is. March is National Craft Month, so make something with help from the endlessly inventive folks at Instructables or Craft Magazine. Alcoa's 50,000 ton press is back in operation in Cleveland. Read more about the Heavy Press Program and the construction of these giant machines.
(February 21, 2012) Fifty years ago this week, Ohio's own John Glenn became the first man to orbit the earth. See NASA's documentary about Glenn and the mission; then visit the Project Mercury website to learn about all the original seven astronauts. Forty years ago this week, President Nixon visited China; C-SPAN has the official video documentary of that historic trip. Celebrate President's day with virtual visits to Mt. Vernon and the Lincoln home in Springfield.
(February 14, 2012) Fifty years ago tonight CBS broadcast an hour-long tour of White House hosted by Jackie Kennedy; read the story and the complete video at USA Today. Peruse the Victorian Valentines collection belonging to the Lillly Library at Indiana University. Enjoy some clever graphic design while browsing the Library of Congress collection of WPA posters.
(February 3, 2012) Follow NASA's two new GRAIL satellites as they map the moon's gravitational field and see new film of the far side of the moon. Get ready for Sunday with the NFL's review of all 45 Super Bowls. And remember the glory days of Kodak courtesy of Duke University's advertising collection.
(January 6, 2012) Did you get an e-reader for Christmas? With a Minerva Public Library card you have easy access to a wide variety of free e-books, including popular new titles for adults and teens. Check out the I-Downloads page to get started. And if you'd even more selection, take a look at this list of 11 Places to Find Free E-books. If all that browsing makes you hungry, try some new recipes, or better yet discover some old ones. The U. of Iowa has digitized colorful recipe pamphlets from food companies, trade groups, and appliance manufacturers. Sunkist suggestions for cooking with oranges in 1915; low-cal fish dishes from the 1950s; Chef Boiardi's famous Italian dishes from the 1930s, and many, many more.