Iraqi Libraries Ransacked by Islamic State Group in Mosul | KVVU

Associated Press
Posted: Jan 31, 2015 12:12 AM MST
Updated: Jan 31, 2015 2:33 AM MST

BAGHDAD (AP) – When Islamic State group militants invaded the Central Library of Mosul earlier this month, they were on a mission to destroy a familiar enemy: other people’s ideas.

Residents say the extremists smashed the locks that had protected the biggest repository of learning in the northern Iraq town, and loaded around 2,000 books – including children’s stories, poetry, philosophy and tomes on sports, health, culture and science – into six pickup trucks. They left only Islamic texts…READ MORE: Iraqi libraries ransacked by Islamic State group in Mosul | FOX5 Vegas | KVVU

Publishers Know You Didn’t Finish “The Goldfinch” — Here’s What That Means For The Future Of Books | BuzzFeed News

Millions may have held their suspicions, but last month the Canadian e-reader company Kobo confirmed it: Most people who buy The Goldfinch don’t actually finish it. According to the company’s data, less than half of Canadian and British Kobo readers in 2014 made it to the end of Donna Tartt’s behemoth novel, one of the best-selling of the year.

How did Kobo know this? Like every e-reader and reading-app maker today, the company, a subsidiary of the Japanese e-commerce titan Rakuten, has access to a comprehensive suite of data about the reading behavior of its users. In a white paper titled “Publishing in the Era of Big Data” and released this fall, the company announced that “with the onset of digital reading … it is now possible to know how a customer engages with the book itself — what books were left unopened, which were read to the very last word and how quickly.” In other words, if you read books digitally, the people who serve you those books more than likely know just what kind of reader you are…READ MORE: Publishers Know You Didn’t Finish “The Goldfinch” — Here’s What That Means For The Future Of Books | BuzzFeed News.

Windows Holographic: Microsoft Goes Full Throttle Into Virtual Reality | Mashable

Microsoft introduced Windows Holographic, a technology that gives us a “world with holograms,” during its Windows 10 event on Wednesday. It would let a user transform one’s living room into a “surreal gaming environment,” according to the company.

There are no wires. No external cameras.

It works with Microsoft’s HoloLens headset, which allows users to wirelessly view holograms. Both the HoloLens and Windows 10 are slated to be available this fall.

READ MORE: Windows Holographic: Microsoft goes full throttle into virtual reality | Mashable

James Patterson’s New Book Will Self-Destruct In 24 Hours | Co.Create

I have not read any Patterson books in the last decade or so, as I’m not a fan of his collaborations with other authors to churn out titles. That being said, this is a fantastic book promotion concept. Very creative…and ‘thrilling’ idea.

James Patterson's New Book Will Self-Destruct In 24 Hours | Co.Create | creativity + culture + commerce

He’s got bazillions of fans, sold hundreds of millions of books, and has been called the best paid writer in the world. But this is probably the first time James Patterson will release a book that will actually explode.

READ MORE: James Patterson’s New Book Will Self-Destruct In 24 Hours | Co.Create | creativity + culture + commerce.

X-ray Reveals the Secrets of Burned Vesuvius Scrolls | CNET

Scrolls that were damaged, but not destroyed, in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius may now be read for the first time in nearly two millennia.

READ MORE: X-ray reveals the secrets of burned Vesuvius scrolls | CNET

67 Science Fiction And Fantasy Movies To Watch Out For In 2015! | io9

What’s hitting the big screen this year? Basically, everything. Luke Skywalker, James Bond, the Terminator, Velociraptors, all the superheroes. But there are also some great surprises, like a movie based on a beloved Nebula-winning novel. Here are the 67 Science Fiction And Fantasy Movies To Watch Out For In 2015! | io9.

Cosplay, Comics, and Geek Culture in Libraries [Blog] by Ellyssa Kroski

Ellyssa Kroski of iLibrarian fame said farewell to the iLibrarian blog in late 2014. iLibrarian was one of my top resources for emerging technologies in libraries and information services. I will miss the iLibrarian posts but am excited about the new website she has launched called Cosplay, Comics, and Geek Culture in Libraries. I’ve participated in coding and medieval times events over the past few years and am surprised at how quickly these events are transitioning into the mainstream. With the increasing popularity and growth of these activities, CCGC in Libraries is sure to be a great resource for librarians and fans of cosplay, comics and geek culture.

Speaking of geek culture, I’ve been watching TNT’s The Librarians series and I guess I’m hooked. It’s silly and over the top but I enjoy the mix of science fiction, mystery and adventure. IMO each episode’s concept/theme is more interesting than the overarching storyline. Cassandra’s outfits are way too distracting though! The remaining 2 episodes of Season 1 air tonight, January 18, 2015, on the Space channel in Canada. 

Via the CCGC in Libraries website.

Welcome everyone to Cosplay, Comics, and Geek Culture in Libraries! This is an exciting time for geeks of all kinds to be involved with libraries as today’s savvy libraries have begun to embrace new ways to engage library patrons such as fandom events, comic book and graphic novel collections, comic cons, cosplay events.

The intersection of these interests with libraries is a perfect match as libraries are striving to develop entertaining and educational new programs and services that will appeal to not only children but young adults as well as “kids at heart” of all ages. And these new programs and resources fit well with the interests of cosplayers who can utilize the equipment in library makerspaces such as 3D printers and sewing machines to create many of their props and costume pieces, as well as comics fans who can come to the library to read comics and graphic novel collections, video and board game enthusiasts who attend library gaming events, and geeks of all types who are drawn to “nerd nights”, Dr. Who marathons, and Harry Potter socials, etc.

I decided to start this blog, not only because I am a self-proclaimed geek, cosplayer, and comics reader and collector myself, but because this is a cutting-edge area of growth in libraries with significant appeal to today’s patrons. I think that there is much that we can do to expand and develop this type of programming and collection development. And I’m not alone. I’ve been joined by a talented group of international writers, librarians, information professionals, and library patrons to provide articles and inspiration to libraries seeking to incorporate cosplay, comics, and geek culture in their libraries!

It Took This Guy Over 7 Hours To Solve the World’s Hardest Rubik’s Cube | Gizmodo

It Took This Guy Over 7 Hours To Solve the World's Hardest Rubik's Cube

Fascinating to glimpse the different types of Rubik’s Cubes this guy has in his collection. I thought there was only the original! The 17x17x17 cube would be a unique addition for libraries to have available for patrons to borrow. 

Seven hours sounds just about right for the average puzzle enthusiast to solve a standard 3x3x3 Rubik’s Cube. But Youtuber RedKB isn’t your average puzzle enthusiast. Instead of tackling a 3x3x3 cube, he solves this incredibly complex 17x17x17 cube designed by Oskar Van Deventer. In the end it took him about seven-and-a-half hours to get all the colored sides put back in order. READ MORE: It Took This Guy Over 7 Hours To Solve the World’s Hardest Rubik’s Cube | Gizmodo

The Best Books of 2014 – The Ultimate List [Infographic] | BookBub Blog

Of all the books published over the last 12 months, which were the very best? We wanted to get a sense of the consensus, so we aggregated 23 different Best of 2014 lists — from The Washington Post to Library Journal to Buzzfeed and more. Then we compiled rankings based on the number of times each books was listed.

Below you’ll find an infographic that highlights the top-ranked books.  (We created separate infographics for books in the romance, mystery & thriller, business, young adult, and nonfiction categories.) We hope you find some great new books on these lists — we certainly did! via The Best Books of 2014 | The Ultimate List | BookBub Blog

Disabled Boy Learns to Play Piano With His Eyes Using Virtual-Reality Headset | The Guardian

Eye Play the Piano is the work of Japanese VR headset manufacturer Fove, working with the University of Tsukuba. The project is pitched as a “universal piano” which children can play using eye movements while wearing the headset.

Through the use of Fove’s eye-tracking technology, the headmount recognises the user’s eye movement. The user blinks on one of the many panels within the interface to trigger the preferred note, which is then conveyed to the piano,” explains the Eye Play the Piano website.

READ MORE: Disabled boy learns to play piano with his eyes using virtual-reality headset | Technology | The Guardian.