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Ignore Feature in Office 365

Have you ever received an email with subject matter that doesn't pertain to your job?  You can simply delete it if you don't want it cluttering your inbox.  What do you do if several people reply to the original email and it quickly turns into a long email conversation?  You can delete all the replies, or you can use the Office 365 Ignore feature.

To ignore an email conversation, just right-click the email in your inbox and select Ignore.  The message below will appear.  Check the box and click OK.

All existing and subsequent responses to the conversation, will go directly to the trash.

You can "undo" the ignore if the conversation is still in the Deleted Items folder.  Open the Deleted Items folder, locate the email conversation, right-click it and select Stop Ignoring.

Osmo in a library setting

Guest post by Andy Barnett, director of the McMillan Memorial Library in Wisconsin Rapids.

We saw Osmo software on an iPad and were impressed with it. It is hard to top as an example of the gamification of education and some elements are amazing. We are promoting it as we transition to a more interactive Youth Services space.

The software kit ($80) includes a stand and mirror, as well as pieces for four different games. This is a great price if you have an underused iPad around and even if you don’t. The iPad uses the mirror to recognize what is happening in front of it.

  • Newton involves redirecting balls dropping from the top of the screen to hit and destroy targets. You can use your hand, a pencil or a line on a sheet of paper to redirect the balls.
  • Masterpiece. Select an image or convert a photograph into a line drawing. Put a piece of paper in front of the Osmo and paper with the image superimposed appears on the screen. You can then trace the image on the paper, building eye/hand coordination.
  • Word consists of several games, all involving finding the right letters to describe the image displayed. At easy levels, it is just the first letter of a word. At higher levels, it’s the whole word. Can be played solo or against another person.
  • Tangrams uses the traditional shapes, but recognizes when you have a piece in the right place. Easy levels show the colors and outlines of the pieces, but higher levels don’t provide clues.

McMillan Library's OSMO stationMcMillan has them out for public use, secured by a cable and with most apps restricted. The tangrams and letter sets must be checked out, but kids are free to sit down and start playing.

Additional resources:
Review of OSMO by a blogger who borrowed it from the library - http://readingbyexample.com/2015/05/09/beyond-the-screen-osmo-for-the-ipad/

Tablets & Weeding

Kitchen-garden-788629_1280I recently spent a couple days helping Cambridge Community Library weed their adult fiction collection in anticipation of the move to their new building - woo hoo! Weeding is not an easy job but it is a necessary one - especially if we want our collections to look like this nicely weeded and arranged garden.

Here are a few tools to help you with your next weeding project.

First, if you haven't heard of the Awful Library Books blog, I highly recommend it. In addition to highlighting books that should be weeded from collections and why, Holly and Mary write articles about the weeding process. I think many of you will agree with the concepts in this May 9 article, "Weeding: It Ain't Easy."

Second, take advantage of the reports and data (password required) from Koha (or your Integrated Library System). And, don't forget the collection development items in the SCLS Professional Collection. Titles like Fiction Core Collection, Public Library Core Collection, Best Books for Children (series), and others that will help with both selection and weeding.

Scanner2And, last, but not least - use the technology available to you to make this process easier. With the web-based nature of Koha, it was easy to take my iPad along with me in the stacks. Set it up on the cart, log into Koha, and weed away. There's also this pretty cool scanner that Craig wrote about in January of 2014. I tested the bluetooth scanner with Koha on my iPad, the Kindle Fire, and the Samsung Galaxy and it worked great for searching the catalog. Want to use it? Use the new Help Desk Portal and request to schedule the Mobile Circ Kit. If possible, please include the dates that you'd like to use the kit. While I couldn't test the scanner with all our member library catalogs, all SCLS libraries are welcome to use the kit.

P.S. I'm working on scheduling Holly and Mary from the Awful Library Books blog for a webinar later this fall.

Unsend with Gmail

Gmail now offers an 'unsend' option but you have to perform a tweak first.


Library Freedom Project Holding Privacy Workshop after ALA


If you're attending ALA and are still in town the following Monday and Tuesday you may consider attending Library Freedom Project's Digital Rights in Libraries workshop being held at Noisebridge. The workshop will provide tools and training to assist privacy-minded individuals (staff and patrons) with their digital presence.

EBSCO Explora

By June 30th, EBSCO's new Explora interfaces will replace Searchasaurus, Kids Search and Student Research Center. The three new interfaces (Explora for Elementary Schools, Explora for Middle & High Schools, and Explora for Everyone) use the same great EBSCO databases, just displayed in a new and improved interface. They are accessible through the SCLS EBSCO account, courtesy of BadgerLink.

Explora for Elementary Schools
Explora for Elementary Schools is the replacement for Searchasaurus and Kids Search and features colorful pictures and school subject categories for easy browsing. More info and training is available through BadgerLink.

Explora for Middle & High Schools
Explora for Middle and High Schools is the replacement for Kids Search and Student Research Center and features an easy to use interface and updated functionality like the cite button. More info and training is available through BadgerLink.

Explora for Everyone
Explora for Everyone is a new interface for the general public that simultaneously searches 20 EBSCO databases for an easy one stop search. More info and training is available through BadgerLink.

Learn more about Explora in this short YouTube video (3:20):

Excel: COUNTIF function

Counting_lemurHave you ever needed to count the number of times something appears in a column (or range of cells) in Excel?

Enter... COUNTIF.

COUNTIF counts the number of cells within a range that meet a given condition.

  1. select the cell you'd like to hold your total count
  2. in the formula bar, type your formula:
    =COUNTIF(range, criteria)
    where range is the range of cells where you'd like to do the counting, and criteria is what you'd like to count

Here's an example for our lemur friend in the picture:


COUNTIF - cell as criteria
COUNTIF using a cell reference as criteria (click for full-size)

COUNTIF uses only a single criteria. Use COUNTIFS if you want to use multiple criteria.For example, you can use a number like 32, a comparison like ">32", a cell like B4 , or a word like "apples".COUNTIF works on more than just text, too. The criteria can be a number, expression, cell reference, or text string that determines which cells will be counted.

The mysterious Windows 10 icon


If you have Windows 7 or Windows 8 on your home PC or on a PC that is not supported by SCLS, you may have noticed a new Windows icon in the system tray next to the date and time. The icon will look like the Windows logo and if you click on it a dialog box will open that introduces Windows 10 and determines if you’re eligible for a free upgrade.


If you decide to reserve your free upgrade to Windows 10 it will ask for an email address that they will use to send you a confirmation.  

Then after Windows 10 is released, which is on July 29, you will automatically get it downloaded to your device and you will receive notification that it is ready to be installed.  While Windows 10 will be available in 7 versions you will only get the comparable version.  So if you have Windows 8.1 Home version then you will only be able to upgrade to the Windows 10 Home version.  

Some people have reported that after they reserved their copy of Windows 10 that the icon doesn't go away.  There are two options to get rid of this icon.  The first is to simply hide it and the second is to uninstall Windows Update KB3035583.  Microsoft's use of this way to get the word out about Windows 10 has mixed reviews, but hey who doesn't want free software?

more SLP

The first 2 of Jean's posts to help you develop your SLP (Super Librarian Powers) are available:

  • Ancestry Library - Get the low-down on this fantastic genealogy resource!
  • NoveList - Learn more about the ultimate Readers Advisory tool for all ages and genres!

Each post includes an overview of the online resource, a short exercise to become more familiar with it, and a 3-4 question quiz (optional) to check your work. There are also links to additional training materials should you want to explore the resource even more -- for example, the Ancestry Library resources mentioned in the post included everything from their online Learning Center to "5 Minute Finds" YouTube tutorials to hour-long SCLS training webinars.

Ancestry Library is one of my favorites. I love to pull up the original census records and see who was living in the household, how old they were, where they were born, their occupations and more. Later in the summer, Jean will also cover another of my favorites, NewspaperARCHIVE, which is a another great genealogy resource. Combine these with the new SCLS slide and photo scanning kit and think of what genealogy fun you could have!

The new SCLS Scanning Kit is available for checkout!

Whose cool parents drove a Camaro?The Scanning Kit is a package of 3 different scanners and a laptop. It’s ideal for patrons who want to bring in their old family photos or documents to the library and digitize them.

What the kit contains:

Fujitsu ScanSnap ix500 is a high speed duplex scanner that means it scans both the front and back of a photo or document at the same time. You can stack 25 to 50 photos or documents up to legal size (8.5x14) in the paper feed and it takes about 1 to 2 seconds to scan each sheet. This scanner does require a PC, which is why we included a laptop with the kit. The laptop does have DeepFeeze on it so be sure to save the files before shutting it down! Files can be saved to a USB flash drive, SD card or DVD.

Wolverine SNaP-14MP Film Scanner for scanning slides, negatives and prints up to 5x7 inch. Load negatives or slides in the appropriate tray and scoot them into the scanner to take their picture. This scanner doesn’t require a PC to save the images on an SD card, but it is nice to have one to view the pictures afterwards.

VuPoint Magic Wand hand held scanner is for scanning documents that might be in a book or binder that is difficult for standard flatbed scanners to digitize. The images are saved to a micro SD card and I’ve included an adapter so you can view the images on the laptop.

The kit is available for check-out to libraries starting today! To learn more, or to place a reservation, visit the Programming Resources web page.


Trivia Question! Can you guess which SCLS staff member's parents are in the image above? The image was scanned from a slide using this kit!