Technology Blog

FREE Online Entertainment

I blogged about online entertainment several months ago and talked a bit about music, TV and online games. The thing is, there is so much more you can do with free online services! If you are looking for a great time sink, check out a few of these options.

Browsing:

Stumbleupon.com - Set up a profile using your email address and let Stumbleupon know your interests. You will then be routed to websites that match your interests. Just like on Pandora, you can tell Stumbleupon if you like or dislike the sites they take you to so they can better match you next time!

Free Video Field Production with Denver Open Media!

Denver Open Media Logo

Do you enjoy taking iPhone footage of your cat chasing the laser pointer light around the living room? Perhaps you're a slightly more seasoned cinematographer looking to improve your understanding of lighting and audio. Either way, Denver Open Media's Video Field Production workshop is for you!

Join fellow video enthusiasts at the Central Library next Tuesday and learn the nitty gritty about cinematography, lighting and audio. This workshop focuses on the manual controls available through larger 3-chip DV cameras, such as the Sony PD170. Don't know what that is? Don't worry! Beginners are welcome too!

Librarian Recommended!

It's a pretty well-known fact that librarians* are big readers.  Many DPL staffers have chosen this field because it lets us work with books, movies and music every day. In a way, we've devoted our lives to these things. So it makes sense that a book recommended by a library staff person is probably a pretty darn good book.

We now have this nifty new page on our website that lets you peruse staff reviews of our favorite library things. Whether you're looking for a light summer read, a tale of adventure or a new website to geek out on, look no further!

Make your own games!

24 years ago, I spent a summer in front of my brand-new Atari XE (Dad was convinced the NES wouldn't be successful), playing Rescue on Fractalus!, an early LucasArts 8-bit game that made me scream so often that my mother asked me to stop playing it (it was really scary when I was 11). Games have been a part of my life ever since, and I'd always dreamed of making my own.

Luckily, the tools to actually make your own games become readily available to everyday Janes and Joes (or Janes and Joes Who Don't Want to Learn How to Code, at least). If you (or maybe someone you know who loves games, is home for the summer, and is just dying​ of boredom) are interested in making your own video games, there are lots of (FREE!) ways you can get started. These first options are great for lower-res, 2D games like platformers and puzzles, and are great options if you're just getting started:

Looking For a Job?

Looking for a job today is a tough business. People spend hours looking for jobs, more hours applying, and even more hours waiting to hear back from potential employers. It's a tough business.   Hopefully some of these tips can help you!

First, take a look at some of the classes the Community Technology Center has to offer. We have a wide range of job search classes that we offer monthly.

 

Interviewing 101: Wednesday, July 11, 3:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Learn how to answer common interview questions and make a good impression at your interview.

Resume & Job Search Workshop: Friday, July 13, 2 - 3:30 p.m.
Looking for a job? Need help with your resume? Drop in and work on your resume and get some job search tips.

Be a lean mean marketing machine

Social networks aren't just about sharing what you had for breakfast and posting oh-so-cute pictures of your niece with jam on her face. They're a big deal. And they're also an excellent way to spread your message as a small business or organization.

Whether you're selling products, offering services, raising awareness or promoting an event, social networks like Facebook and Twitter can lend serious firepower to your marketing efforts. But using social networks to promote yourself takes more finesse than just punching in a random broadcast- you need to craft your message and build your brand.

Be smart about antivirus protection!

Sick computer being inspected by doctors in haz-mat suits

So the antivirus trial or subscription you had has expired, and now our computer is giving you messages like “YOUR VIRUS PROTECTION HAS EXPIRED! RENEW YOUR SUBSCRIPTION NOW OR EVERYTHING WILL CATCH FIRE! AAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!” Once that happens, you have a choice: pay to renew what came with your computer or find a replacement.

But don’t just install the first thing that shows up in Google. A little research can help you make a decision that ensures your computer is protected – and it might protect your wallet, too. There are two main sites I turn to for information on antivirus products: AV-Test and AV-Comparatives. Both are independent organizations, not connected to any vendors of antivirus software, who run comprehensive detection, cleaning, and usability tests.

LinkedIn Hacked - Change Your P@$$w0rd

LinkedIn recently reported that it was hacked and the passwords to 6.5 million accounts were compromised. If you have a LinkedIn account, make sure you change your password to protect yourself. Take a look at a few tips to make a strong password to protect yourself in the future!

There are several rules you should know when you are creating a new password:

1. Always use 8 or more characters
2. Never use a dictionary word or a person's name
3. Always use letters, numbers, & symbols
4. Never use personal information to create a password
5. Always capitalize random letters

Working it Out

mapmyfitness

I like to work out because it's a great way to release stress, to get better sleep and to have more energy. Yada yada yada, right? We all know these things are true. But, like most people, I get into ruts when I don't exercise at all. It's soooooo hard to get back on track. But I've discovered a few fun online tools -- which are available for free -- that might help keep you motivated!

Currently I use MapMyFITNESS to track all the exercise I do, minus my bike commuting (more on that later). I'm not going to claim to understand the psychology of why logging every physical activity works, but it does. There's something extremely satisfying about having a record of what you've done to keep you motivated. MapMyFITNESS is far and away the most comprehensive free app I've used to record workouts.

¡Que Fantastico! Computer Basics in Spanish and English

Do you know someone who's in need of some basic skills, from mousing and typing to internet browsing and beyond?  If they speak Italian they're out of luck, but if they're English or Spanish speakers we've got them covered!

The Community Technology Center has been offering high quality free basic computer classes in English with great success, and we're pleased to announce that starting in June we'll have Spanish computer classes as well. iQue bueno!

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