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In alignment with the NYS Executive Order 202.8, ordered to help limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), Town of Ulster Library is offering curbside pickup starting July 1st.

Curbside pickup begins July 1st! Read our post below for more information on this service.

Here is the link for those who would like a copy of all handouts and PowerPoint from our Reduce Food Waste presentation!

Find Local Businesses to Support with SaveYourBookstore

The spread of COVID-19 has had a financial impact on us all, but in this age of quarantine few struggle more than small businesses. And among small businesses, independent bookstores can be some of the hardest hit by our health crisis. Many bookstores have been forced to reduce staff and operations to the bare essentials, even as they fight to continue supporting their customers through the pandemic. Others have been forced to close altogether. Yet, even with the odds stacked against them, some bookstores have managed to make a tremendous comeback as a result of their community’s support. 

 

If you would like to help a local bookstore get back to its feet, you should check out SaveYourBookstore. This is a free site designed to help you locate small, independently owned bookstores in your area. You can simply search for a business by your location, select a bookstore that interests you and find out the information you need to support them, including shipping policies and social media links. You can check it out with this link, here

Protect Yourself from Misinformation with NewsGuard

The spread of COVID-19 has doubtless left many of us uncertain and grasping for information. Where did the disease come from? How serious is it? What are the safety measures that I need to take? It’s natural to turn to the internet to answer these burning questions, but not all sources carry reliable information. So, what to do then? 

Well, you can check out NewsGuard, a browser extension which evaluates the reliability and transparency of online news sites. NewsGuard’s analysis of news sources revolves around a number of factors including the source in question’s business model, instances of publishing false content, and full disclosure of financing. Once you’ve installed the browser extension, you will be able to see the NewsGuard rating of different sites, indicated by a shield at the top right of your screen near the search bar. If you click on this icon, NewsGuard will give you a breakdown of the site in question’s reliability metrics as well as an overall grade out of 100. You can also learn further information by checking out NewGuard’s ‘Nutrition Label’ for the source, which offers a more detailed explanation of each rating and sources to support the site’s evaluation. 

If you’re interested in NewsGuard, you can download it or learn more about it at this link, here. Due to circumstances surrounding the Novel Coronavirus outbreak, this service is currently free until July 1st, so be sure to check it out soon if you are interested.

Senior Tech Skills Series Part 4

This time on the Senior Tech Skills Series we’re going to be taking a look at Microsoft Accessibility, an excellent resource for optimizing the settings of your PC. This site is exclusively for Windows users, but has valuable information on navigating PC settings and shortcuts. You can find the link to the website, here.

 

Microsoft Accessibility is an excellent resource for both seniors who may have difficulty seeing or hearing the projections of their computers as well as those with learning disabilities. The site guides you step by step through changing settings to suit your particular needs, whether by boosting color contrast, enlarging and differentiating text and icons on your screen, or auto-generating captions for videos. Besides assisting with your PC settings, Microsoft Accessibility also offers guides to navigating Microsoft software, like Office 365, with greater ease. So, if you or anyone you know has difficulty using the computer due to issues with vision, hearing, or mental health be sure to check out Microsoft Accessibility. 

 

And just as a reminder, if you or anyone you know is having tech issues take note that you can e-mail Josh at tech@townofulsterlibrary.org AT ANY TIME, and he will respond to your e-mails on Thursdays. You may also ask to join a zoom call with him (which will take place on Thursdays from 12PM-1PM) if you require more assistance.

Introducing Hoopla!

If you’re finding yourself reaching your wit’s end looking for entertainment during quarantine, fear not because your library card has you covered! The Town of Ulster Library is proud to present Hoopla, our newest media streaming platform!

 

So what does Hoopla offer? Well, Hoopla has everything from e-books and audiobooks, to shows and movies, to even e-comics and music! What’s more, Hoopla allows you to instantly borrow up to 8 titles each month; there are no waitlists or late fees to worry about. But that’s not all, as during this extraordinary time Hoopla is offering Bonus Borrows, which is a collection of top rated items which you can borrow without taking up one of your 8 monthly slots! 

 

Hoopla is a whole new world of entertainment unlocked by your library card, so why not check it out? You can find the link on the front page of our website, or you can just click the link, here.  

Senior Tech Skills Series Part 3

On this installment of the Senior Tech Skills Series we’ll be taking a look at a particularly excellent resource for learning basic browsing, GCF Global. This site is a logical follow up to Skillful Senior and offers a multitude of different skills to improve. You can find the link to the website, here

 

GCF Global is an excellent guide to internet navigation, providing both step by step instructions (including visuals and resource links) and video guides which teach you how to install necessary software and begin exploring. What’s more, GCF Global provides instructions for a number of different browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari and more! These tutorials do not end at just basic installation and navigation however. There is a great depth of information in each set of instructions, allowing you to learn everything from how to bookmark pages, to how to block ads. You can even quiz yourself on the material which you learned to make sure you retained everything. And there’s even more to learn, so this resource is excellent for newcomers and experienced internet users alike!

 

If you or anyone you know is having tech issues take note that you can e-mail Josh at tech@townofulsterlibrary.org AT ANY TIME, and he will respond to your e-mails on Thursdays. You may also ask to join a zoom call with him (which will take place on Thursdays from 12PM-1PM) if you require more assistance.

Community Resources – Updated 4/21/20

Senior Tech Skills Series Part 2

If you know an elder who is sitting out the spring due to the coronavirus, why not alleviate their boredom and help them learn a new skill from their home? All they need is a computer, an internet connection and this website to get started.

 

Skillful Senior is a site which focuses on instructing complete newcomers to computer navigation on the basic mechanics of the process, such as moving the mouse, typing on the keyboard and general ergonomics. Users are instructed in these basic skills through a combination of audio instruction and hands-on practice activities. These exercises can be repeated ad infinitum, so making mistakes is no hassle. Importantly, using the site is generally a straightforward process. Overall, this is a resource useful to seniors with no computer experience who struggle with the mechanics of computer usage.

 

If you or anyone you know is having tech issues take note that you can e-mail Josh at tech@townofulsterlibrary.org AT ANY TIME, and he will respond to your e-mails on Thursdays. You may also ask to join a zoom call with him (which will take place on Thursdays from 12PM-1PM) if you require more assistance.