Nerd Nite East Bay - #15

January is a great month for a Nerd Nite.

Come and see us Monday night at the New Parkway where we will, once again, be a part of Nerd Nite East Bay.  This month we'll be learning about data, exoplanets and Affordable Care.  If you want a sneak peek of the Reading List, just check out our Pinterest Board!  Aliens and Nate Silver and Obama, oh my!

We do really hope to see you there!  Please come by and say hi.

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OpenOakland Tools for Oakland Residents

OpenOakland offers a variety of open access tools for accessing local government information. Check out the following tools for details!

OpenOakland, a civic innovation organization that is part of the Code for America Brigade program, brings together coders, designers, journalists, community members, and city staff to collaborate on solutions to improve how local government serves Oakland residents. They've developed the following tools: 

  • Oakland Answers- is a site developed by OpenOakland and 70 community members that is question-driven site that provides friendly, concise, easy-to-understand responses to your city-related questions, as though they're coming from your neighbor,
  • Adopt a Drain - a website developed by OpenOakland for the Oakland Public Works Agency that empowers

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Nursery Rhymes Rock

Check out nursery rhymes from around the world at the library. They are silly and their rhythm will help your child learn how to read.

Regardless of where and when you grew up, rhymes are a part of childhood.  In the United States, Mother Goose rhymes are the most common but all rhymes are great fun to read with your very young child.  Not only are they silly, but they have a definite beat. That rhythm is an important way to show your child how to hear individual sounds in words.  Hearing the sounds in rhymes will help your child hear the sounds in words when reading them.  You can increase the fun time together and the impact of the rhythm by bouncing or moving along with the rhymes. Where can you find them?  Why, the library, of course!  Oakland libraries have rhymes from all around the world; some locations even have separate nursery rhyme sections.  Come in and check them out!

Baker, Keith.                 Cabrera, Jane                    Orozco, Jose Luis
Big Fat Hen.               Old Mother Hubbard.        Diez

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Introducing Mirielle Guliano: Author of French Women Don't Get Facelifts

Discover the beauty "secrets" of French women from bestselling author Mireille Guiliano.

As a book reviewer for the library world’s trade publication Library Journal (LJ),  I review a lot of lifestyle and personal grooming titles.  In the past few years, there’s been a flurry of publications on the “beauty secrets” of French women.  If current popular thought is correct, the French surpass their American counterparts in physique, confidence, style and a certain  je na so quoi.  Style mavens demanded to know exactly what was behind the French feminine mystique. How do French women indulge in decadent desserts, buttery-rich cuisine, robust wines--- and stay slim?  Mireille Guiliano provided some insightful answers in her worldwide bestseller French Women Don’t Get Fat.  Several popular books soon

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Lunar New Year Celebrations

Get ready for New Year at Oakland Public Library.

We are celebrating Lunar New Year with space and laughter. 

Chabot's Travelling PlanetariumChabot Space & Science Museum brings their Star Lab, a portable planetarium to Oakland libraries. Come see the stars as they were seen by the Chinese and Greeks.

Rockridge Branch 
  Thursday, Jan 23 at 4 PM

Golden Gate Branch
 
Wednesday, Jan 29 at 3 PM

César Chávez Branch
 
Tuesday, Feb 4 at 5 PM

81st Avenue Branch
 
Saturday, Feb 8 at 1 PM

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A Valentine for Jim Dale

To my dearest, favorite narrator Jim Dale, Your voice is like buttered velvet, but not in a gross way. Will you please read the phone book to me?

The plan for this blog post was to reflect on the impressive audiobooks that have come out over the past year, as nominations for the 2014 Audie awards have just closed.  Then I realized that there's really only one voice actor that I hold dear (besides Neil Gaiman, of course, I can listen to him read source code), and that's Jim Dale, ahem, MBE

Dearest Jim Dale,

Your voice is like buttered velvet, but not in a gross way.  Actually, that's a terrible description, what I mean is that your voice is complex and sophisticated and terribly pleasing. Will you please read the phone book to me?  

For me, what makes a great book even better is superior narration, and I'm a big fan of Jim Dale.  With every word, I'm more convinced that our world is filled with magic and wonder.  He seems to almost 

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The 2014 Model Year EPA / DOE Fuel Economy Guide is here!

Get the latest fuel economy data from the EPA and DOE, for 2014 model year cars.

Every year, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) publish an annual report featuring fuel economy data for new model year cars, SUVs, and light trucks. You can find printed copies of this guide at the Reference Desk. You can also check out the cooresponding fuel economy website, www.fueleconomy.gov. You can find fuel economy data for cars back to 1984, and you can even do side-by-side comparisons for different cars. The site also includes fuel-saving tips and gas price calculators. 

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Library User Spotlight - Meet Miranda!

Meet Miranda, a Main Library user with a love for all things Oakland!

Today I have the great pleasure of introducing you to Miranda Everitt, a library user who agreed to answer all my questions (for which I am very grateful).  

Miranda, who grew up in Ohio and has lived in Oakland for 3 years, is currently a grad student at UC Berkeley working on a master's degree in public policy.  In the meantime she is working at The Food Labor Research Center, studying working conditions in grocery stores throughout the state.   Before that she worked at a food bank, did a turn in AmeriCorps, and wrote headlines at The Oakland Tribune.  Good stuff!

I asked Miranda a bunch of questions and she gave some amazing answers, that you just have to read!

What is the most embarrassing book that you love?

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Q&A Patrons ask; librarians answer. The Reluctant Reader

Q&A: Children's Librarians answer questions all day, every day, from children, parents, caregivers, and teachers. This is part one in a series sharing a question from a patron and an answer from a children's librarian.

The Reluctant Reader. Part 1.

Q: My son is 8 years old and he hates reading. It's like torture to get him to sit still for the 20 minutes each day his teacher requires. I'm at my wit's end. I'm worried about him, and I know he's feeling stressed about it, too. What can I do?

sketch of a librarian ready to take notesA: It's not time to panic. I've met plenty of kids who say they don't like to read, and who avoid reading at all costs, and yet they grow up to be readers. Parents don’t always know that each person starts reading in their own good time. Statistically, this often happens sometime around or before 3rd grade, but it's not universally true that by 3rd grade everyone reads on their own. Plenty of bright children become readers later than anyone expected.

The single best predictor of whether or not a child will

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Awards Excitement!

The American Library Association Youth Media Awards are nigh! Will you be watching?

No, this isn't about who is custom-designing my dress for Oscar's night.  This is about the Newbery, Caldecott, Coretta Scott King, and other Youth Media Awards, soon to be unveiled, on Monday January 27th!

You met Miriam Medow, OPL librarian and member of this year's Caldecott committee, a couple of weeks ago.  Miriam, and members of many award committees, are now in their final weeks of re-reading their confidential short-lists, nominated from among hundreds of children's books published this year.   Around the middle of next week, they will pack their bags with warm clothes, books and notes, and head to Philadelphia PA for the

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