What is the Internet Archive?

I am sure that many of you are aware of the “Wayback Machine” – a tool that lets users view functional “snapshots” of websites as they existed at various times in the past. While students will certainly enjoy looking back on the Moraine Valley Website, this is only a very small part of what the Internet Archive does. With the lofty mission “…to provide universal access to all knowledge“, the Internet Archive is a free and open online library that offers users:

All of these resources are powerful tools for research, and this is a service that savvy internet users should be aware of: Looking for an authoritative version of website you visited in the past? Seeking an old local radio broadcast? Maybe you want to read a chapter of an obscure text that you can not find in your local library? With a variety of Special Digital Collections available (scroll down if you follow the link) – you might find just what you are looking for!


But there is fun to be had too – some will want to check out The Manga Library, The Old School Emulation Center, or study some Cookbooks from the last 200 years! I have been continuously dying while trying to play Super Mario Brothers in the browser, and am brought back to the early 90’s in my cousins basement! As you are probably starting to sense – the possibilities are endless. Note: Some materials require you to create a free digital “Library Card” to check out materials.

If you are interested in participating or learning more, check out their ongoing projects. You can create a free account to begin uploading content today!


“About this result” on Google Search

Have you noticed those three vertical dots that are coming up next to Google search results? Google hopes that their “About this result” feature will make it easier for users to understand the results they are seeing.

Screenshot of Google Search Results Page

Clicking the three dots will pull up an “About this result” panel that includes key information about the website, and gives you the option to read “More about this page”. According to google, “If it’s a site you haven’t heard of before, that additional information can give you context or peace of mind, especially if you’re looking for something important, like health or financial information.”

Screenshot of "About this result" panel

“About this result” will certainly not cure the misinformation pandemic – but it is a time saving tool to be aware of. And if google is implementing this feature, I would be surprised (shocked!) if other search engines didn’t follow suit.

Baking and Cooking in December

Do you have some traditional treats that you make year after year for celebrations? Are you interested in looking for something new? Here are a few cookbook suggestions that are available at the library.

Two shelves with an array of five book covers. The top shelf shows Breads of the World, Holiday Cookies, and The World on a Plate. The bottom shelf shows The Perfect Cookie and Classic German Baking.

Breads of the World TX769 .I54 2013b

Holiday Cookies TX772 .H65 2014

The World on a Plate TX725.A1 H5674 2015

The Perfect Cookie TX772 .P47 2017

Classic German Baking TX721 .W45 2016

In addition to the books listed above, here are two ebooks that you might like to skim for ideas: Vegan Holiday Cookbook and Christmas Baking.

Who is going to fact check the fact checkers?

With public trust in government and other institutions both near all time lows, can we expect people to put their trust in yet another group: fact checkers? Many have pointed to fact checking tools and services as part of the solution to the misinformation pandemic. But what happens when fact checking itself becomes polarized and politicized? Are we just recreating echo-chambers with partisan fact-checking services?

While I personally think that there are several useful and unbiased tools for fact checking, it can be dangerous to rely on a single source to filter the internet for you. These tools can absolutely save you time and energy, but if you are not comfortable relying on an outside source to fact check for you, you can use the same process that professional fact checkers use: Lateral Reading.

Lateral Reading is a strategic way to contextualize and verify information that you find online. The basic idea (which takes time and practice to master) is to open up new tabs on your web-browser and read “laterally” or side-to-side across the internet. Start searching the open web and ask yourself: Who or what is behind the information you are seeing? What are others saying about this news source or author or institution? What are others saying about this story? Can you find the original story or trace data/claims back to the original source? Once you are armed with this additional information and context, you can start to decide how seriously to take the information you are reading.

While there is no simple solution to combatting the spread of misinformation – there are steps that you can take to be a more informed consumer. Ultimately, each of us has the responsibility to decide who to trust online.

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Economy and Economics

Photo by Andre Taissin on Unsplash

Written by Eileen Davenport

Inflation.  Interest rates.  Monetary policy.  Rate hikes.  The Fed.  The FOMC.  Cryptocurrency.  What exactly do these words mean, and how will it affect you?  These are some of the terms that many people use, but not everyone understands.  The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis has websites that outline and explain these concepts with brief papers on how these ideas affect the economy.  Open Vault explains economics in general terms, adding context to the market concepts that affect our lives every day.

Designed for teachers but useful for anyone with an interest in the subject, Econ Lowdown has resources on personal finance and economics.  The lesson plans are designed for K-college teachers, but clear definitions and real-world applications make the content here useful for anyone who wants to learn more.  You can learn at your own pace, and keep up-to-date with the latest updates on timely topics through the monthly Page One Economics newsletter.

IT’S WORLD CUP TIME!

Starting on November 20, in Qatar, and ending on December 18 with the final playoff, soccer fans will have almost a month’s worth of games in various venues or cities. Of course, not all games will be worthy of attention!

World Cup Trophy

And, yes, the United States is playing.

Here is more information from ESPN for you to find your favorite team or teams.

Enjoy.

Is This The Last Time We Fall Back?

At 2am this coming Sunday morning we fall back one hour as Daylight Saving Time comes to an end once again. Is this the last time? It’s possible, but probably not.

If there’s one thing that most Americans seem to be in agreement about, it’s that they don’t want to change clocks twice per year. Both physical and mental health suffer as our bodies adjust. There is a difference of opinion though on whether we should stick with DST all the time, or use Standard Time all of the time. There are compelling arguments on both sides. Many businesses see increased profits with more daylight in the evening. There is also evidence of a decrease in accidents and crime. Sleep experts, on the other hand, tell us that our bodies are at their best when the sun is highest in the sky at midday. This is more in line with Standard Time. So, while a majority would like to stop changing clocks, we can’t agree on which system to make permanent.

In March of this year, the US Senate picked a side and unanimously passed the Sunshine Protection Act, which is set to take effect in November of 2023 and make Daylight Saving Time permanent. This means that we would spring forward in March of 2023 and then just stay on that time, never having to switch back and forth again. In order for this to happen, the US House must also pass the act before it gets sent to the White House for signing. The act is stuck for now, with the House of Representatives not taking any action on the measure. So this could be the last time we fall back, but only time will tell.

Find out more about the history of timekeeping with these books from the library collection.

Voting Help: Voting for Judicial Candidates

Judges gavel

Often people skip the judicial candidates on the ballot because they have no idea who to vote for. It is much easier to research other types of candidates. How does the average citizen know which judicial candidates are qualified for the job? If you live in Cook County, the Vote for Judges website makes it easy. The Alliance of Bar Associations has compiled the ratings of 12 different Bar Associations into an easy to read chart in which the candidates are rated on their qualifications and whether each association recommends them or not. You can get to the chart from the Vote for Judges page — scroll down below “November 2022 Retention Election Evaluations” and click on the link for the PDF. (See screenshot below to see where to click – I highlighted the link in yellow.)

If you live in Dupage County, you can go to the Dupage County Bar Association Judicial Candidate ratings or to the Illinois Bar Association’s Judicial Candidates for Dupage County. If you live in Will County, I was only able to find compiles ratings from the Illinois Bar Association’s Judicial Candidate ratings for Will County.

If you need help researching any other candidates, please Ask a Librarian.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month

October is dedicated to raising awareness about digital responsibility and security. It reminds us to stay safe online by practicing basic cyber hygiene, staying informed through joining cyber communities and keeping an eye out for suspicious scams and phishing. Whether at home or work, it is our responsibility to protect our information by keeping inform and secured.

Follow four key actions recommended by the CISA.gov Cybersecurity Awareness Program:

4 Things You Can Do
Throughout October, CISA and NCA will highlight key action steps that everyone should take:
Think Before You Click: Recognize and Report Phishing: If a link looks a little off, think before you click. It could be an attempt to get sensitive information or install malware.
Update Your Software: Don’t delay — If you see a software update notification, act promptly. Better yet, turn on automatic updates.
Use Strong Passwords: Use passwords that are long, unique, and randomly generated. Use password managers to generate and remember different, complex passwords for each of your accounts. A passwords manager will encrypt passwords securing them for you!
Enable Multi-Factor Authentication: You need more than a password to protect your online accounts, and enabling MFA makes you significantly less likely to get hacked.

Learn more of what you can do to protect yourself all year long:
CISA Cybersecurity Awareness Program
National Cybersecurity Alliance

Download or Share this Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2022 Public Toolkit.


INFLATION

INFLATION

Saving money during times of inflation

What is inflation?

Definition: Persistent increases in the general level of prices. It can be seen as a devaluing of the worth of money. (From The Penguin Dictionary of Economics)

Simply stated: Everything costs more! Here are some cost saving tips from your MVCC library:

Entertainment Savings:

FREE ebooks, comics, music, eaudiobooks, movies and TV shows! Download Hoopla – log in with your MVCC connect info.

FREE streaming access to a collection of feature films- JAWS, Black Panther, Reservoir Dogs & more! Download SWANK Digital Campus – Log in with your MVCC connect info.

Hulu’s Student Discount – $1.99/ month for College students with ID.

Health/Fitness Savings:

Moraine Valley FitRec Membership for Full-time students (12+credit hours) FREE.

Part-time students (1-11 Credit hours) $60/semester.

Discover more ways to reduce expenses- borrow these books from your MVCC library (always free!)

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