This blog is about new paperless reading materials like downloadable audio books, ebooks, and online magazines, made available to you through the Appleton Public Library. I plan to provide helpful tips on using these new products, along with reviews of audio books, music on cd, and movies on DVD and Blu-ray. There may even be an occasional post on genealogy. The library is changing as rapidly as your access to media and the Internet. We want to keep on top of the trends and bring you information and entertainment in a way that fits your life today. -Diana
Mon, Jan 7, 2013
When looking for the older movie In Harm’s Way in DVD format for someone there were two entries for the movie at an online site where they sell DVDs that are out of print (no longer being produced). The person asked why there was a huge difference in price between the two items which looked identical. One cost $46.97 while the other cost $5.67.
Many people don’t realize that DVDs (and VHS before that) are produced in different formats. The first movie was listed as Region 1, for the United States & Canada, and the second as Region 2. Some sites will have this listed on the same line as the title, but on other sites you may need to look through the description in order to find this information. The region is usually listed on the DVD case as either a region number or a list of countries where it will play on the average machine. The price was lower on the second DVD because on a U.S. web site there is less call for DVDs in other Region formats, as they won’t work on many machines.
DVDs are formatted differently in various regions of the world so film distributors can control aspects of release including content, release date and price for each area as well as restrict where they can be played. Multiple region DVD players are available if you look for them. They can play DVDs for some or all regions. Most people wouldn’t need them, since DVDs sold in U.S. stores or available from the library will be Region 1.
Standard DVD Regions:
0 - No Region Coding
1 - United States of America, Canada
2 – Much of Europe, Turkey, Egypt, parts of the Middle East, Japan and South Africa
3 - Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Borneo, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia and other Southeast Asia areas
4 – Mexico, Central & South America , the Caribbean, Australia and New Zealand
5 - India, much of Asia, most of Africa, Russia and former USSR countries
6 – People’s Republic of China
7 - Unused
8 - Airlines/Cruise Ships
9 - Expansion (often used as region free)
Blu-ray discs also have regions, but they have a letter/number code.
Region A/1 is what we would find in the store here. It covers North America, Central America & South America, as well as Japan, North & South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia.
Region B/2 is for Europe, French Territories, Middle East, Africa, Australia & New Zealand.
Region C/3 covers most of Asia.
The difference is between Blu-ray discs and DVDs is also that of format. Though you can play DVDs in most Blu-ray players, it doesn’t work the other way--DVD players don’t play Blu-ray discs. Many people are also able to use their video game console to play Blu-rays and/or DVDs.
Sometimes a DVD will be listed as PAL or NSTC. Originally these were analog frequencies for television signals and DVD systems were designed to read DVDs encoded in these formats. The terms may still be used as identifiers.
NSTC is the video standard historically associated with the U.S., Canada, Japan, Mexico, Taiwan, and other countries. PAL is for most European countries, most of Africa, China, Australia & New Zealand, Israel and other countries. Some DVD players can only play discs in one of these standards.
DVD-R is another term you may see. It may mean that the DVD has been recorded on demand, using a less professional process than DVDs released by major studios. Sometimes these don’t play as well, or will play on a computer but not on your DVD player.
Two additional standards for DVD-R disks exist: DVD-RG for general use and DVD-RA for authoring, used for mastering DVD video or data. The latter is not typically available to the general public.
Now you know what to look for when purchasing movies on dvd!
DVD Region map from http://openclipart.org/detail/2240/dvd-regions-by-molumen
Fri, Dec 28, 2012
You have plenty of footage from holiday parties and family get-togethers; maybe even a family wedding. As you begin to splice scenes together on your home computer to form a video, you realize that you could use background music to bind together different events or as a background for credits.
There are plenty of things available on the web, but if you are looking for royalty free, copyright safe music to add to your video, check out Soundzabound. This music library contains a wide variety of music, audio clips and sound effects.
Search by type of music or sound, or by length of clip, to find great audio for your projects. The clips are perfect for business presentations, school projects, digital storytelling, animation, gaming and web design. If you are unfamiliar with how to use sound clips, there are links to tutorials available on the main Soundzabound page.
This great resource is available for free, through Badgerlink, using your Appleton Public Library card.
To access, go to www.apl.org, choose eLibrary, then Badgerlink. Soundzabound is number 42 on the list. This will allow you access to thousands of sound clips to use for your next project!
Wed, Dec 12, 2012
We have special displays to help you find something to view or read.
Staff Pick displays are available every day, both in the Children and Adult sections. Staff members choose books they’ve read that they think you will enjoy. Each book has a bookmark with the name of the staff person, so if you have the same taste in books you will be able to find more titles chosen by that person. Our website also has reviews written by staff--Adult & Teen Staff Picks and Staff Picks for Children. A special Holiday display of books is to the right of the new books. It has holiday fiction and nonfiction from various traditions.
On the back of the Information desk there are dvd displays. One half is documentaries—new or popular titles. The other side changes topics monthly. This month (December) we have Romantic films. Also this month, there are holiday films located on the back counter. These are both fiction and nonfiction; for example, videos on how to cook holiday foods.
Still not comfortable using your device? Sign up for a one to one session with a librarian, through the website or by calling 832-6173. We can schedule a 45 minute session for you to learn more about using these resources with your device.
Whether you feel like watching or reading something about the holidays, or you would like a break from them, we have thousands of other titles to interest you. Staff will be able to assist you in finding something to your taste, or browse our many displays.
Wed, Dec 5, 2012
If you have ever wanted to learn a language, or wish to refresh your knowledge of one you already studied, then Mango Languages is for you!
Go to the Appleton Public Library website, www.apl.org. Under the tab “eLibrary”, choose “A-Z”. Mango Languages is number 45. Click on the link, which will take you to a portal where you may create an account, using your InfoSoup library card number.
The Mango program uses realistic situations and conversations so you learn a language more effectively. You will listen to a native speaker then repeat the words and phrases. Rather than learning by rote, you will learn those words and phrases in context which helps in learning grammar and conjugation. You will more easily learn to communicate in this new language.
There are even versions for iPhone/iPod/iPad and for Android.
There are many languages available for English speakers
Those with dots are the most popular courses.
There are also programs for those learning English:
This is a great value from your library, as interactive language programs can be very expensive. Take a look at this great program today!
Tue, Nov 20, 2012
This past week the Appleton Public Library held its fourth Celebration of Hmong Culture. The event featured a local dance group and musician who played the qeej, a bamboo flute. Two Hmong women read stories page by page, by turns in English and Hmong.
The annual event began with the creation in 2008 of the Hmong Resource Center, an area containing materials about Hmong culture, in both Hmong and English. There are books for every age level—picture books in Hmong, dictionaries and books to learn the Hmong language, cookbooks with traditional foods, teen novels, and history of the Hmong people. Music—both traditional and recent, finds a place on the shelves, as do dvds, both fiction and nonfiction. The music videos are especially popular.
We hope to soon have clips of the Celebration of Hmong Culture that may be viewed.
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