Archive for the ‘Hoopla’ Category

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If you could see all of the activity around me today, you would know that the answer to that question is “yes.”  Of course I would say that as a librarian, but the last few days have brought home to me how much our services are needed.

There is so much information available on the internet that people need someone to sort through information for them.  Librarians find creditable sources and libraries pay to use online databases that the general public cannot afford as individual  subscriptions.  Yesterday I showed a mother the Tumblebooks link on our kids page.  With a computer, children can see the pages of picture books on which the words are highlighted while the computer reads the text aloud.  I also explained the Maker Lab to a very excited patron.These are two of the many resources you can access with your library card.  We offer e-books and audiobooks that can be downloaded to your mp3 player through Overdrive, streaming movies from Hoopla, magazines through Flipster, music downloads through Freegal and a language learning program called Mango.  All of these services can be accessed from home through whatever internet device you own.

We currently have two terrific apps for your mobile device: the ACPL mobile app lets you browse the catalog, check the events calendar, store your library card info and renew books with a touch of your screen; the family app has games, information and much more to offer to parents of young children.  You currently need to have an Apple device to access the family app, but I’m told it will be available for android in the future.

Libraries are gathering points for the community.  Parents attend the same story times each week with their children and make friends with other parents.  Groups use our meeting rooms for quilting, dance, yoga, scrap-booking and, of course, meetings.  ACPL has its own theater and art gallery. There are also live music concerts throughout the year.  This summer ACPL again offers Rock the Plaza concerts outdoors on Saturday evenings.  Oh, by the way, we also have books.

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By Nancy

Holiday DVDs are flying off our shelves at all of our library locations.  This holiday season is our first since we started offering streaming movies via Hoopla.  So in case you can’t make it in to the library because of your busy holiday schedule or just want to stay in out of the cold, don’t forget that ACPL resident library cardholders can borrow up to six movies each month via the library’s free streaming move service, Hoopla.  You can borrow each title for 72 hours.  Those under 18 may borrow those movies rated G through PG-13.

holidayhooplamoviesSo scope out the selections (consider scrolling through the lists of “Festive Family Flicks” and “Holidays with Heart”) and plan your six checkouts for November and six checkouts for December.    You can do all of your searching now, adding titles to your Favorites so you don’t have to remember which titles you wanted to view at a later date.  Once you’ve added the titles as Favorites, when you are ready to watch a movie, just Sign In, go to My Titles and then Favorites to pull up the list of movies you added to your Favorites list.  Click on the cover for the detailed information and then click borrow to start your 72-hour loan period.

If you need any assistance using Hoopla, please call us at 421-1210.  Hoopla requires you to sign up or register for an account using your email address, a password you create for Hoopla, and your library card number.  Once you have created your Hoopla account, you will Sign In with your email address and the password you created.

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Several years ago one of my co-workers got her first smart phone and said, “Now I get it, it’s all about the apps.”  I didn’t yet have a smart phone and had no clue what she was talking about.  Now I couldn’t live without them.

I’m not talking about the games I play on my phone.  I mean the dictionary, the maps, the bank, the library, the book reader, the bar code scanner, and those are just the apps I use for myself.  Librarians have many useful apps and websites available to them and we use them daily.

ACPL pays for some of the on-line resources we use for research and you need to come to the library to access many of those.  These data-bases can be accessed from our home page at acpl.info by clicking on the link to research databases.  Some of these also have developed mobile apps.  This is a growing trend. Websites made to be read on computers are not always mobile friendly;  they don’t fit on the screen and are not easy to use.  Many web applications have developed mobile apps to fix this problem.

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The ACPL mobile app is a good example.  With this app you can scan the ISBN bar code on any book and search for it in our catalog. You can search by title and author as well. Then you can see if we have it on shelf and go pick it up or place a hold on the item.  If you have that option turned on on your device, the locations part of the app will tell you which branch is closest to your current location.  While you’re looking, it will also give you the hours of that location.  Different branches have different hours.

You can check the events calendar for the library and ask for a reminder for an event you want to attend.  You can even set the reminder for the number of hours in advance that you want to have your memory jogged.

Of course, you can also use this app to check your account, pay your fines, renew materials and store your barcode so that you can check out at our self check machines.  You still need your pin to log in to the app and to check out materials, so only people with your pin can check out on your card.

I can’t praise the developers of the app enough.  If you have not downloaded the ACPL mobile app, go to your app store for iOS or android and search for ACPL.  The app is free and will make your library experience even better than it already is.  Join the thousands of Allen County residents who are already using this app!  Be sure you also check out our new family app and the overdrive app for e-books.





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New movies available on Hoopla


Have you tried our new Hoopla service to download free movies?  Now is as good a time as any!  To sign up, you’ll just need your library card number, PIN, an email address, and a password you’ll create.  Check out some of the latest Hoopla offerings….
The Spartacus tv show series is now available.  This series is hard to catch in on DVD at the Main Library.

Spartacus: Vengeance - Season 2

Also, these movie titles should be of interest:

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What’s all the Hoopla?

If you’ve been at ACPL lately, you may have heard about a new digital streaming service we are partnering with called Hoopla.  Click here for information on how to set up and access your account.  In addition to the many great films and television shows in our physical collection, Hoopla gives us a digital library of shows that can be checked out and streamed online or on portable devices. They are always accessible regardless of how many other patrons currently have the item checked out.  Everyone is allowed six checkouts per months from this service, which raises the question: What should I watch?  Hoopla helpfully lists the Rotten Tomatoes consensus on every film’s page, but here are a few interesting films that are always available, right now.

The Deep Blue Sea (2011)


This film’s cover might lead you to expect a torrid, but classy British romance, but it is more “The Awakening” than Pride and Prejudice.  The Deep Blue Sea follows the story of Hester Collyer (Rachel Weisz), the wife of a respected judge who has left her husband in order to have an affair with a younger Royal Air Force pilot (the sinisterly charming and equally terrifying Tom Hiddleston, Thor’s Loki).  Her story is not a happy one; caught between the devil and the deep blue sea, Hester must choose between a man who offers her stability but with whom she has known no passion, and an ardent young man whose fleeting heart still lies in his glory days of World War II.

What to expect: dreary London streets, heart-wrenching sobbing, little glimmers of hope.

Logan’s Run (1976)


Science fiction is a genre that doesn’t age particularly well, but I have a soft-spot for visions of the future that seem cheesy in retrospect, so long as there are some interesting ideas on the table as well.  Logan’s Run posits a dystopia with several horrifying aspects.  Population control has allowed for people to only live to 30, whereupon they must submit themselves to “the carousel” for rebirth or termination.  Those who try to escape the perfect. domed city are deemed “runners” and are chased down and executed by “sandmen” who seem to relish their duty upholding the order.  If the costumes are anything to go by, ice dancing has come back in a big way.  As I said, these are terrifying implications for the future.  In the current climate of popular fiction where dystopian world’s are in vogue, it’s fun to look back and see how it was done 40 years ago.

What to expect: futuristic jargon, a Washington DC partially reclaimed by nature, a robot that makes the Daleks seem graceful

Parkland (2013)


It is no coincidence that last year, the 50th anniversary of the tragic assassination of JFK, we got a film like Parkland.  This movie tries to give its audience a new perspective on the minor, but integral figures who were involved with the events on that fateful day.  This includes the trauma surgeons at Parkland hospital (led by High School Musical‘s Zac Efron in yet another attempt to solidify his status as a teenage heartthrob turned dramatic actor), the shooter of the still-chilling film of the motorcade, Abraham Zapruder (Paul Giamatti), and the Oswald family, including Lee’s eccentric mother, who’s part southern belle and part histrionic conspiracy theorist, and his brother, who’s struggling to keep the family together despite being the only normal one in the bunch.  This film gives a very cursory but dynamic glance at the events surrounding the shooting, and the near voyeuristic camera work helps you feel as if you are in the room.  It doesn’t quite reach the level of new insight, but it is worth a watch, especially for those who love American history.

What to expect: lots of silhouettes in 10-gallon hats, grief-stricken faces, a “where they are now?” montage before the credits with photos of the real people portrayed in the film.

World’s Greatest Dad (2009)


Don’t get me wrong, dear readers, Robin Williams is a funny guy.  That said, I feel like most off his recent career can be summed up with this bit of horrifying CGI from Old Dogs: trying a bit too hard to coax a laugh out of the audience to the point where it becomes off-putting rather than endearing.  Enter World’s Greatest Dad, a black comedy written and directed by Bob Goldthwait of Police Academy fame.  Like his excellent 2011 film, God Bless America, this is a dour, sardonic look at an aspect of modern American life through a uniquely pessimistic lens.  Williams plays Lance Clayton, a failed writer and high school teacher trying to raise his son Kyle and eke a little joy out of his largely unfulfilling life.  Kyle is a vile, vulgar teenager, a distillation of every negative aspect of the hypersexual American teenage mindset.  If you can go a bit darker, the movie foists upon its protagonist his son’s accidental suicide, what we’ll call here a “choking accident” for the sake of decency.  Goldthwait pulls no punches in his acerbic portrayal of the way that people capitalize on tragedy, but he also manages to show a deeply human story where Williams discovers the value of being accountable to oneself rather than well-liked by others.  You might hate it, but if you’re not easily offended, give it a watch.

What to expect: one of the most unlikeable teenagers since King Joffrey, feelings of discomfort, hard truths about the human condition.

Boy (2010)


Boy is story of Alamein (but he prefers “Boy”), an 11-year-old kid living on the Bay of Plenty, a fertile region of New Zealand dotted with small Maori villages.  As the film begins, his grandmother has left town to attend a funeral, and it is up to Boy to watch his younger brother Rocky and several cousins in her absence.  His mother is deceased and his father is in jail, but those harsh facts don’t stop Boy from being imaginative and spirited.  Most of his thoughts revolve around girls in his class, Michael Jackson’s Thriller (it’s 1984), and elaborate fantasies of what his father is actually doing rather than serving jail time.  All of this is upset when the absentee dad returns home with a couple of his goons in tow.  He feigns interest in reconnecting with his two sons, but he’s far more interested in any enterprise that will get him a bit of cash.  The father, also Alamein, is played by writer/director Taika Waititi, and is perfectly characterized as someone who children see as impossibly cool and every adult immediately recognizes as sketchy.  This film shows Boy’s compelling struggle for identity with a uniquely New Zealand flavor, and has a good amount of offbeat humor that is well-earned.

What to expect: charming accents that may cause you to use subtitles, great acting by a goat, a full cast rendition of the “Thriller” dance after the credits.

This only scratches the surface of what Hoopla has to offer, and like Netflix, there is a “recently added” list that allows for easy browsing of the most recent additions to the catalog.  Found a hidden gem on Hoopla that you’d like to share with everyone?  Let us know in the comments below!

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