Buying an eReader or Tablet

Thinking about buying an eReader or tablet?  As this post from The Digital Reader points out, Black Friday is a great time to get a deal on one of these devices, whether you’re buying it as a gift to someone else or for yourself.

This quiz from eBook Friendly will help you decide whether to purchase an eReader or a tablet. One thing the quiz doesn’t mention, though, is whether or not you plan to borrow eBooks from the library. If you do plan to borrow eBooks from one of JCPL’s databases, keep in mind that it is much easier to download to a tablet (this includes the Kindle Fire/Kindle Fire HD and the NOOK Galaxy Tab 4) than to an eReader. That’s because you can download library eBooks directly to tablets. To download eBooks to an eReader, including to a regular Kindle, you must have access to a computer.

Once you’ve decided which type of device you want, you may want to read some reviews. You can access full-text articles from Consumer Reports through the library database MasterFile Premier. To access the database from home, you’ll need the current KYVL user ID and password; you can get those by calling the Information Desk at (859) 885-3523 ext. 228. Next, type “Consumer Reports” in the publication field, then enter your search terms in the search field at the top of the page.

If Santa comes early with your device, the library is hosting an eBook Open House on Wednesday, December 10, from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. You’ll learn how to download library eBooks just in time to read your favorite holiday classic.


Library Resources for Artists

Library Resources For Artists – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

Last night, I had the pleasure of presenting on Library Resources for Artists at the Creative Art League of Jessamine County.

Members seemed especially interested to learn about our digital eBooks and magazines. Most of our art eBooks are available on Kentucky Libraries Unbound (powered by OverDrive). Many of these books, such as Post-Impressionism (a sample of which is embedded below), have beautiful, full-color illustrations. For help getting started with these eBooks, visit the OverDrive Help page.

Our digital magazines are available through the library’s Zinio account. Magazines that may be of interest to artists and crafters include American Craft, Beadwork, Cloth Paper Scissors, Molly Makes, Popular Photography, and Woodworker’s Journal. To get started with Zinio, click “Create New Account.” Zinio reader apps are available for iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows 8, Mac, PC, and Kindle Fire/HD/HDX.

As always, if you don’t find what you’re looking for, please let us know. We are always glad to consider your suggestions.

Read Around Jessamine with Goodreads

Read Around Jessamine LogoWe know our library patrons read all around Jessamine County, but we’re making it official with our new Read Around Jessamine program: We’re taking book discussions out into the community. Each month, we’ll have three different meetings for three different genres of literature at three different, rotating locations. The library will provide beverages for everyone who attends.

Registration is required. You can check out copies of the books at the Information Desk. September’s selections are:

The Maze Runner book coverThe Maze Runner
Current Fiction
Tuesday, September 9
7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Solomon’s Porch


Parasite book coverParasite
Science Fiction
Monday, September 15
6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Polvino Family Art Center


All the Light We Cannot See book cover

All the Light We Cannot See
Historical Fiction
Tuesday, September 23
6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Panera Bread at Brannon Crossing

You can come to all the discussions, or just select your favorite read of the month. Or, if you can’t make it to any of the in-person discussions, you can join the conversation on Goodreads at

Goodreads is a social networking website for book lovers that will serve as the online home for JCPL’s in-person Read Around Jessamine book discussion groups. With Goodreads, you can join the discussion wherever you are. You can also interact with friends, make new contacts, keep track of what you’ve read, receive reading recommendations, and more. We’ll show you how to get started at this hands-on class. Or, take a look at the video below.

Practice for the COMPASS® Tests with LearningExpress Library 3.0

Does your school use the COMPASS® test for college placement? If so, you can prepare for the test with LearningExpress Library 3.0.

  • Visit LearningExpress Library.
  • Create an account by clicking “Register” in the upper right or lower right corner. If you used the old version of LearningExpress Library, you will still need to create a new account.Registration form
  • After you create your account and log in, choose “College Center” (not “College Prep Center”) from the pictures in the middle.College Center button
  • Click the arrow on the right until you see “Prepare for College Placement Exams.”Prepare button
  • From the menu on the left, choose “COMPASS® Preparation.”Compass Preparation link
  • Choose the test you want to practice and click “Launch.”Launch screen

Sound and Music Apps for iPads

iPad with beakerFriday mornings between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., stop by our iPad Science Labs to try out fun and educational science apps. Each week, we’ll focus on a different subject to coordinate with our hands-on science labs.

On June 13, we explored sound and music apps. Here are our favorites:

Sound Uncovered
This interactive book from the Exploratorium museum in San Francisco features “auditory illusions, acoustic phenomena, and things that go bump, beep, boom, and vroom.” Free.

Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra
Benjamin Britten’s Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra comes to life with the help of this fun, interactive app. Learn about different instruments in the orchestra, compose your own musical variation, or create your own fugue. Aimed at children ages 7-11, but fun for teens and adults as well. Free.

A favorite of most children at the lab, this simple app creates music when you draw lines. Free.

Blob Chorus Ear Training
Train your musical ear to recognize pitch with the help of the blob chorus. Free.

Singing Fingers
Fingerpaint with sound. Say something while touching the screen to create colorful pictures. Then, play your picture like an instrument. Free.

Looking for a job? We can help!

woman on a job interviewThroughout the month of May, the Jessamine County Public Library will be offering classes to help you get the job you’ve always wanted. Our first class, Job Search Websites, will teach you how to find job openings using the Internet. See below for the complete schedule. Registration is required.

Want to get a head start? Visit the Jobs and Careers page on our website for a list of library resources that can help you find a job.

Job Search Websites

Tuesday, May 6, 6:30 p.m.

Learn how to search for jobs online in this hands-on workshop. We’ll cover:

  • The best local and national job search websites
  • Basic search techniques, including choosing the best keywords
  • How to narrow your search
  • How to create an email job alert

Interviewing Skill Development

Tuesday, May 13, 6:30 p.m.

Get interviewing help from Jason Clayton, Director of Center for Career and Calling at Asbury University. Learn how to present the best version of yourself possible during interviews with employers. We’ll cover:

  • Tips to be successful before, during, and after the interview
  • How to increase your chances of getting an interview
  • Ways in which you can fully articulate your skills and experiences the employer is seeking during the interview
  • Interview etiquette, what to wear, and ways to decrease anxiety about interviewing.

Write Your Resume

Tuesday, May 20, 6:30 p.m.

Learn how to write or update your resume in this free, hands-on workshop.

Write Your Cover Letter

Tuesday, May 27, 6:30 p.m.

Learn how to write or update your cover letter, so you can get the job you’ve always wanted!

Get More Out of Google Image Search

Since last month’s Lunch and Learn on searching Google was so popular, we decided to add two hands-on Google classes this month. Google Search Basics will focus on beginning Google searches. You’ll learn to choose the best keywords, refine your search results, and understand and evaluate your results. Advanced Google Search will focus on advanced search tips & tricks. You’ll learn to search images, maps, videos, news, recipes, movie times, and more.

One of my favorite Google search tricks is to search images by color. Let’s say you remember reading a book about interior design, but you can’t remember the title or author. You do remember that it had a red cover, though. (Sound familiar? We’ve heard this problem once or twice at the Information Desk.) In the Google search box, enter “interior design book,” then click “Images” below the search box. Now you see a bunch of interior design books, but you don’t see the book that you are looking for.

Google image search results

Click “Search Tools.” An additional menu pops up with several different options. Click “Color,” then click on the red box.

Google search results

Notice the red in all your results? Scroll down until you find your book.

Google search results

And there it is! Design Sponge at Home! The search by color feature is also useful if you’re looking for all black and white images or diagrams, or if you’re looking for transparent images.

Free Computer Tutorials at

Want to learn how to use email? To understand what “the cloud” is? To learn how to use Microsoft Excel?, a free website from the Goodwill Community Foundation, can teach you all this and more with its over 90 tutorials on computer, math, reading, and life skills. is easy to use, even for beginners, and the site’s videos, games, and interactives will keep you engaged as you learn.

On Wednesday, March 26 at 2:00, we’ll be exploring this website in detail during the class Accessing Free Computer Tutorials.  Register today!