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Reading, Wellington, and whatever else – teenblog@wcl.govt.nz

Category: Internet Page 2 of 9

Best Viral Videos 2012

Here’s a mashup of this year’s best viral videos, as edited by Videogum. Enjoy! Laugh along with me

Lawspot

Got a puzzling law question? Lawspot is a Wellington-based website that aims to provide answers to people’s legal queries. So you can find out about the legalities of downloading MP3s from YouTube for example.

While Lawspot isn’t a substitute for personalised, one-to-one legal advice, it’s a great way of finding out general information. If you’re interested in the law in general you can also browse through answers to see what legal concerns people have.

We – Wellington City Libraries – also have a range of useful online law databases, courtesy of mygateway.info.

If you’re interested in studying law (and staying in Wellington while doing so), the Victoria University Law Faculty has all the info, obvs. – including a video that features impressive Wellington buildings and scenery (and two tiny clips of people in lectures).

More successful teen authors

It’s well known that it’s very hard to get your book published. Some writers slave away for years before their first success, while some fortunate and talented people get published as teens. A little while ago we did an investigation into the teen publishing phenomenon, the result being this Top 10 list.

The trend is still continuing, thanks to the success of Alexandra Adornetto (Halo), Kody Keplinger (The DUFF) and others, as are spotlighted in this YALSA article.

The article has also got some suggestions for websites for aspiring writers, so it’s well worth a read if you love writing.

Which reminds us, it’s just one month from Nanowrimo (“thirty days and nights of literary abandon”), where you get to attempt to write a novel in 30 days (while still keeping on top of NCEA).

Ferragost by Melina Marchetta

Ferragost is a short story set in the world of the Lumatere Chronicles, featuring Lady Celie. It’s being published in the Review of Australian Fiction, an online journal, which is available for purchase (about $3.00 Australian) from tomorrow (7 August).

Melina Marchetta promises that the story doesn’t have any spoilers for Quintana of Charyn, which is released in a few weeks’ time, but that it does provide useful background. More explanation and a short extract here.

Some Links

If you’re a Jodi Picoult fan, and you’re interested in Between the Lines, the new novel she has written with her daughter Samantha Van Leer, then here’s a Radio New Zealand interview they did together today, talking about the inspiration for stories, who to cast in the movie, and other such writerly things.

Here’s a lovely salute to Margaret Mahy by American author Kristin Cashore, focussing on the many reasons why MM’s young adult writing is so wonderful, and so deservedly award-winning.

If you are interested in the Olympic Games and statistics, the New York Times has a map of medals won by country from 1896 to 2008. It is pretty cool (if you’re not into stats) and very interesting (if you are). In 1984 New Zealand won enough medals for “New Zealand” to appear on its circle.

NPR.com (National Public Radio, I believe) in the US is compiling a list of the best young adult novels ever. You can vote for your favourites (a bit of good taste from New Zealand won’t hurt).

Most Searched For

Each month (ish) we check to see which library items are the most-reserved, most in demand (Most Wanted). We also keep an eye on which catalogue items are the most searched for, and the two sort of match up! Here’s a list of the top 10 young adult Easyfind catalogue searches  from June:

  1. The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins
  2. Catching Fire, Suzanne Collins
  3. Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins
  4. Naruto #56, Masashi Kishimoto
  5. Matched, Ally Condie
  6. Divergent, Veronica Roth
  7. Naruto #55, Masashi Kishimoto
  8. Dare to Dream: Life as One Direction
  9. City of Lost Souls, Cassandra Clare
  10. The Night Circus, Erin Morgenstern

Spelling things correctly increases the chance of getting the results you want*: here are some words and names that sent people on wild goose chases – choclate, tradgedy, Stephanie Meyer (our old friend), Selean Gomez, cognative.

* Although Easyfind does helpfully suggest spelling alternatives for you!

Random Link

Epic Reads is a new book site focusing on young adult literature. Established by HarperCollins, epicreads is interactive (polls, quizzes, reviews, contests, forums etc) and you can sign in via Facebook to share results and content. Additionally, the site has two separate channels for paranormal fiction (called Pitch Dark) and romance (Story Crush).

For links to other sites of interest we have a list!

Divergent procrastinations

Veronica Roth‘s Divergent trilogy is super popular at the moment. While you’re waiting in the queue for Insurgent, here’s some stuff to read or do:

– Read Free Four: Tobias Tells the Story on the Divergent Facebook page (it’s one of the tabs). Although I wouldn’t do this if you’ve not read Divergent yet. It is, as the title suggests, Four talking about his first meeting with Tris. Ah.

– An interview on goodreads.com. Here Veronica Roth talks about interesting things like how her dystopian society of factions started out as a utopia, and what authors and ideas have influenced her.

– Do a faction quiz, to find out where you’d end up.

– Visit a fan site for much info, like Divergent Lexicon, Divergent Fans, Divergentish (fan art), the Factionless livejournal community.

It’s like a growing internet phenomenon.

Pottermore, finally

Last year – in June, in fact! – it was announced that Pottermore was, well, something, but we weren’t sure what. Then special people got to play while they were beta testing. Now everyone can! You can sign up to enjoy Pottermore: a unique online Harry Potter experience from J K Rowling. Here’s a sneak peek:

Prepare yourself for the games

The 74th Hunger Games are nearly upon us (attendance is mandatory). In the intervening two (!) weeks, you can familiarise yourself with the politics of Panem: visit the official government webpage. It has really cool landscape navigation (fancy scrolling right instead of down!). You can become a citizen (District 4’s population could do with a boost). Or find out if the trackerjackers are particularly bad this season, or keep up to date with Capitol news. Plus more.

(You can also pre-purchase tickets to the film – the first showing as at one minute past midnight on Thursday the 22nd of March.)

What people are looking for

Here’s a Top 10 list of the most popular searches on the library’s Easyfind catalogue in January 2012, followed by some examples of “when good searches go wrong” (don’t try those at home).

Top 10 Easyfind Searches

  1. the hunger games
  2. hunger games
  3. harry potter
  4. tintin
  5. cherub
  6. downton abbey
  7. diary of a wimpy kid
  8. game of thrones
  9. geronimo stilton
  10. road code

Other interesting popular searches include: Eragon, Glee, Robert Muchamore, Cassandra Clare, Naruto, and building android apps.

Strays, Orphans and Waifs 🙁

  1. downtown abbey
  2. dairy of a wimpy kid
  3. the book theif
  4. kattyperry
  5. confessions of gerogia nicholson
  6. business inteligence
  7. blood promsie
  8. roald dahi
  9. fittle princesses fittle princsses fittl princsses
  10. the weeknd

<3 typos

Like this? Like that!

If you’re looking for readalike suggestions (or a way to waste much time), then try this. It’s a very cool home-made (by someone very clever) visual book-recommender thingy, based on Amazon’s large database of items. It uses the information Amazon gathers about customer purchases to create links (myriads of links!) between your favourite titles, and other similar ones.

For example, here’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan using the gizmo. If you are using a mouse with a scroll button, scrolling will zoom in and out, revealing a really large web of possibilities. Another example: Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green.

Very cool.

(found via mediabistro.com)

A look back at the year through Facebook tinted glasses…

… or something. The Facebook Data Team recently compiled a bunch of data from Facebook (what else would they do?) that eventually spat out Memology 2011. Points of interest include the top ten ranking topics of the year, the top ten status trends of the year and the fact that somehow Rebecca Black managed to stay off all of the lists. Pop over and have a look to see if anything you “like” or talked about charted this year. While you’re on Facebook, make sure you “like” us on our official Teen Blog page and maybe we’ll be a noteworthy meme in 2012.

What do you love?

If you tell What do you love? what you love, it will come back with a whole page of different links, tools, pictures, and whatever else Google can find. Cats? Joe Jonas? Sleeping? Those frozen croissants you can get that you bake for 15 minutes and then eat? Just type it in and brrrrrrrowwwwse

Three Strikes

As keen users of the internet you may already know this! But! In case you didn’t, and you know someone who downloads lots of movies, music, and television shows, then read this:

From the first of September the Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Amendment Act 2011 becomes law, meaning that if you’re caught downloading copyrighted material from dodgy places you – or whoever owns your internet connection – could get in a lot of trouble. The new law makes it easier for the copyright holders to get you, basically; you get two warnings, and then, if you’re caught again, you get fined (up to $15,000). Although it begins at the beginning of next month, any alleged infringements made 21 days before then can (and probably will!) be considered a mark against you. This means that any filesharing from the 11th of August will count. That is tomorrow!

Here are some handy links. Do tell people, since any kind of illegal downloading will endanger whoever pays for the internet connection used.

The Act in its entirety
3StrikesNZ
Wikipedia
Stuff news article about the Act
NZGamer article about the Act

What are you, Pottermore?

What is Pottermore.com? I do not know. I heard a rumour it had something to do with cellphones, but I forget my source. The Guardian has some theories also. Obviously it is Harry Potter-related, somehow. An online game? What do you think it might be? Comment below and if you’re right (what it actually is will be announced on Thursday/Friday) then we will somehow highlight your prescience. A prize for the ages!

UPDATE: Well now we know what Pottermore is! Kind of! Some sort of e-book shop/fan site I think. Sian got it right, pretty much, in the comments. AWESOME.

Here are the first photos from the Hobbit film, btw. Have you seen any of the actors around the city? I tend to come across them in supermarkets.

Download e-books to your nifty device

If you have an e-book reading device such as an iPod Touch or an iPhone*, you can download e-books for free using your library card. All you need to do is search for “Overdrive Media Console” in the Apple App store, download said media console and then browse the library’s growing collection of e-books.

Here are some new YA e-book titles:

* This is also true of other e-book readers, like the Sony Reader, the Kobo (but sadly not the Kindle). For a complete list and more info go here.

Google Global (!) Youth Science Fair

Google is running a Global Science Fair for teens. As it is global, anyone in the world can enter. Even a NZer. Especially a NZer, since we’re quite good at innovation and science. Entrants (i.e. everyone reading this I hope*) need to be between the ages of 13 and 18, and can work solo or in groups of up to three. You enter it online obviously! 

*The prizes are beyond awesome. They are actually epic. Guys you need to win this.

No longer a Figment of your imagination

Figment is “a community where you can share your writing, connect with other readers, and discover new stories and authors. Whatever you’re into, from sonnets to mysteries, from sci-fi stories to cell phone novels”, you can find it all at Figment – it’s like a social network for those that love to write or read original stories. Check out the contests, forums or blog while you’re there, or just oggle at how cool the webpage looks.

You never know… you could be discovered as the next Stephenie Meyer.

(Us folk here at Teen Blog are alway happy to receive your writing anytime too!)

Figment Pic

Beiberbio II

Last week? Two weeks ago? I pointed out that Justin Beiber’s autobiography is due. Well! Good news. You can hear excerpts being read below.

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