Technology

Voice Control

At today's Let's talk iPhone event, Apple VP Phil Shiller announced Siri, an advanced voice-activated control system included with the new iPhone 4S. Even though this is an exciting step forward, computers have had speech recognition for years, and movies and television have simulated it for even longer. Here are some examples of fictional computers in movies that could hold a conversation:

2001 [videodisc]: a space odyssey by Metro-Goldwyn- Mayer

The time machine [videodisc] by DreamWorks Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures present a Parkes/MacDonald production

The Terminator [videodisc] by Hemdale presents a Pacific Western production of a James Cameron film; Cinema '84; a Greenberg Brothers Partnership

Magazine Express

As the Canton Public Library continues to deal with a declining budget, patrons are reminded the "magazine express" program has been discontinued. The following titles remain as single shelf copies with back issues available for checkout — these titles include:

Death of the Book—and Other Good News

Thursday, October 6, 4:00-5:30pm
Lecture at Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery (use Diag entrance)
913 S. University Ave., Ann Arbor, MI

According to Dan Okrent, "The digital revolution has upended the roles of bookstores, libraries, publishers, and, of course, readers. It’s the biggest change in the world of words since Gutenberg, and may turn out to be just as beneficial—or even more so." Daniel Okrent is best known as the first public editor at the New York Times, but he first spent more than 25 years in magazine and book publishing. He has written several books, including Great Fortune: The Epic of Rockefeller Center, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in history. He also attended the University of Michigan and worked on the Michigan Daily.

Public parking is available in the structure at 650 S. Forest, just south of S. University. Free and open to the public

The Age of Piracy

Theft is a problem endemic to human nature. But what if theft were a victimless crime? In the computer age, copying a file from a friend or from the web has become easy and widespread; and it is often criminal in nature. The following books give insight into whether this is a problem of enforcement, of intellectual property laws, or of both:

The pirate's dilemma : how youth culture is reinventing capitalism by Matt Mason

Downloading copyrighted stuff from the Internet : stealing or fair use? by Sherri Mabry Gordon

Free culture : how big media uses technology and the law to lock down culture and control creativity by Lawrence Lessig

The illustrated story of copyright by Edward Samuels

QR Codes

By now, you have probably noticed these funny looking boxes on everything from cereal to restaurant menus. You have also probably wondered what the heck they are and if they matter to you. Well, these black and white squares are actually called QR codes, a type of 2D barcode meant to be read by smartphones. Originally created by a Toyota subsidiary in Japan to track automotive parts, these black and white boxes are now being used to pass along text, web addresses and all sorts of information to smartphones. Companies are using these codes to direct customers to everything from sweepstakes entry forms to job applications. Get scanning today with one of the many smartphone apps that enable you to scan and read QR codes — like NeoReader & BeeTagg Reader (just to name a few).

Canton Seniors Book Discussion: October 26, 2011

Canton Seniors Book Discussion group will meet on Wednesday, October 26 from 2:00-3:00p.m. in Canton Public Library's Group Study Room A. This month's reading selection is:
 
The devil in the white city: book jacketThe Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson.  Architect Daniel Hudson Burnham overcame tremendous obstacles and tragedies as he and others transformed swampy Jackson Park into the White City for the World's Columbian Exposition 1893 in Chicago, while Henry H. Holmes used the attraction of the great fair and his own satanic charms to lure scores of young women to their deaths.

Copies of The Devil in the White City will be distributed on September 28 at the book discussion. Beginning September 29, ask for a copy of The Devil in the White City at the Adult Reference Desk.

Customer Service — A Survey

Some recent viewpoints regarding society's business customer service ratings make for some interesting reading in the July 2011 issue of Consumer Reports. The article on the Consumer Reports website contains these comments. CR is part of the CPL adult magazine collection and is also available for patron in-library use located at Adult Reference.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Technology