Featured eBook: “Math Goes To The Movies”

math

 

Math can play an important role in many major films. From The Martian to Moneyball, the ability to use math in difficult situations can be integral (get it?) to the story. The authors of the book Math Goes To The Movies aim to watch, break down, describe, and explain every movie that even hints at mathematical concepts. The authors even dissect a single scene in 1984 that has a math equation in it. Throughout the book, the authors either explain why mathematical concepts in movies are blatantly incorrect or praise the directors for getting the equations and concept exactly correct. This eBook is a fantastic read that will help you learn more about math!

eBook link

  • by Donny Turner

 

 

 

Spotlight on PubMed

pex pubmed

A part of the U.S. National Library of Medicine, PubMed “comprises more than 28 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books.” Essentially, PubMed is a medical database with citations, clinical trials, clinical queries, and more. Entries from MEDLINE and OLDMEDLINE are also available through PubMed.

 

PubMed FAQ:

Who uses PubMed?

Biology majors, nursing majors, Pharmacy students, professors, and researchers from around the world.

 

Does PubMed have tutorials?

Yes, their tutorials help you in searching through PubMed and finding the resources that you need.

 

Can I download a full article from PubMed?

No, PubMed generally just houses citations and abstracts. However, sometimes an abstract will provide a link to its full article, housed in a different database.

 

Can I access PubMed on my phone- is it mobile friendly?

Yes, PubMed Mobile was made to make PubMed easily accessible.

International Mountain Day (December 11th)

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Did you know that December 11th is International Mountain Day? At the library, we have several books and movies that feature rugged peaks and those who climb them. Check out the list below:

 

Jon Krakauer, mountaineer and nature writer, describes the 1996 tragedy on Mount Everest. Krakauer was one of the few who survived the dangerous summit, and he describes the events with a personal, empathetic voice. Krakauer’s experiences with other climbing expeditions lends well to this book, as he can describe maneuvers and mountain tricks with accuracy.

 

Have you ever wondered how mountains interact with the world around them? This eVideo, which you can view right from our website, shows the interesting process that mountains undergo as they adjust to the elements. The Films On Demand description expands:

Examining Earth’s mountain-building processes in detail, this program also studies the weathering, erosion, and mass wasting by which mountains are worn down. Viewers gain insight into the basic factors that underlie volcanic activity, the various types of geological faults, and the tectonic processes in which oceanic and lithospheric plates collide, separate, or slip past each other, resulting in dramatic physical changes. Eye-catching graphics as well as live-action footage from the Alps, Andes, Cascades, Rockies, and Himalayas help illustrate concepts.

 

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In this eBook, Japanese author Koji Uno presents two stories: “In the Storehouse” and “Love of Mountains.” The first story does not have to do with mountains, but the second story describes the author’s trips to the Shimo Shuwa town and the Shinano mountains. The author is not as impressed with these mountains as he expected, but he enjoys the weather and the company he meets in the area.

 

John Muir is an essential writer when it comes to nature- particularly the beautiful topography of California. Muir wrote about the American landscape in the late 1800s and early 1900s, describing land that may look vastly different now. He was a conservationist whose work helped protect the nature around us; in fact, Muir Woods National Monument in San Francisco was named for him.

 

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Annie Dillard explores how nature can reflect and awaken our spirituality in these essays. For instance, in “Total Eclipse,” Dillard writes about experiencing an eclipse on a mountain top, and how the surreal moment impacted her life. Dillard is great for those who want a voice for the feelings you get and the lessons you learn from spending time outside.

 

 

 

 

2018 In Review

2018

The library blog gained several new, dedicated writers in 2018. We wrote about everything from new books to wrestling and all that falls between. Let’s take a look back at the best of the blog from this year!

 

Amount of Blog Views: 2,055

Top 10 Posts Of 2018:

  1. Top 5 Underrated Library Perks
  2. Donny’s Deductions: The History of Professional Bowling
  3. How To Reserve A Study Room
  4. How To Use The Library As A Guest
  5. How To Print In The Library (For UU Students & Faculty/Staff)
  6. New In Our Archives: “The Private Papers of John Jeter Hurt”
  7. Myth-Shattering Fun Facts
  8. Top 5 Education Databases
  9. How To Download eBooks To Read Offline
  10. A Brief History of Union University

 

*these had the most views and interaction for this year

 

Top 10 Blog Post Quotes From 2018 (In No Particular Order):

1. Bowling two-handed makes it easier to hook the ball, thus scoring higher games with less experience. This makes the sport more accessible and many more middle and high school bowlers are using this technique. Jason Belmonte has helped grow the sport more than just about any other professional bowler. – Donny Turner, “Donny’s Deductions: The History of Professional Bowling”

 

2. A wrestling match can tell a story unlike any sporting event can, and sometimes it can do this better than television shows. A good wrestling match, if done well, can be up to half an hour long. This is longer than many TV shows and in that time, with few words and technically one scene, two wrestlers can tell a story unlike any other. – Brennan Kress, “Book Reviews: ‘Headlocks and Dropkicks’ by Ted Kluck”

 

3. 1975: it can be argued that this is the year that the first true “summer movie” was born, Jaws. – Matthew Beyer, “Matthew’s Monday Movie: ‘Jaws'”

 

4. Human beings pride themselves on their extensive and diverse knowledge of the world, but sometimes information gets confused along the way. Misunderstandings, urban legends, and flat out lies can infiltrate what we believe is common knowledge. – Ruth Duncan, “Myth-Shattering Fun Facts”

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.

5. Some afternoons you sit on the first floor of the library, bent over your Chemistry textbook, and hold up your eyelids because they stubbornly decide to close on you. “I can’t spend five dollars on a coffee this week. I’m broke!” you tell yourself. If you notice an acquaintance who’s in this situation, escort them into Modero and tell them to pick out a warm and caffeinated beverage – it’s on you. – Danielle Chalker, “Random Acts of Kindness Day”

 

6. Akage no An (Red Haired Anne) was introduced to Japan during the educational reforms of 1952. The series and its authorized prequel have both been adapted into anime, and two schools in Japan (the Anne Academy in Fukuoma and the School of Green Gables in Okayama) teach their students how to speak and behave as the admired character would. – Jordan Sellers, “Fun Facts You Might Not Know About Anne of Green Gables”

 

7. The older I’ve gotten, the more I’ve turned to nonfiction when I want to read something. Maybe I’m looking for advice, or maybe I just want to know how other people live, and think, and figure things out. To Shake the Sleeping Self is the perfect book to get inside someone else’s mind and feelings. Jenkins writes in a genuine, self-aware tone. He’s easy to relate to because he wonders about things we all do- who he is and who he will be in the future. – Olivia Chin, “Book Review: ‘To Shake the Sleeping Self'”

 

8. Are you an Anglophile? It’s okay, you can admit it. If you drink Earl Grey every morning, have the Union Jack hanging on your dorm room wall, or dream of going to grad school at Cambridge, you probably are. – Danielle Chalker, “Featured eBook: ‘The Cambridge Art Book'”

 

9. Reading can help increase empathy. By reading, especially fiction-reading, you increase your ability to empathize with others. If you can understand a character in a novel, you can better understand the people around you. – Brennan Kress, “On The Importance of Reading”

 

10. In the history of philosophy, it is important to learn about each philosopher’s predecessor, since many philosophers build off of what their mentor taught (or, interestingly, completely reject it). – Olivia Chin, “Featured Book: ‘A Short History of Modern Philosophy'”

 

Featured Writers:

Matthew Beyer

Danielle Chalker

Olivia Chin

Ruth Duncan

Brennan Kress

Jenny Manasco

Anna Poore

Jordan Sellers

Donny Turner

 

Featured eBook: “You Can Handle It: 10 Steps to Shift Stress From Problem to Possibility”

you can handle it

As the semester goes on, stress will inevitably continue to increase. Classes will get more difficult, nights will get longer, and sleep will be but a distant memory. In this time, it is important to be able to manage your stress in a healthy manner. You Can Handle It by Margaret Wehrenberg gives 10 steps on how to deal with an overabundance of stress.

  1. Breathe: She first talks about how just stopping to take a few deep breaths can help in almost any stressful situation. It is a great way to get your heart rate under control and calm down.
  2. Physically Relax: Being uptight and rigid while stressed can make the issue more prevalent. It can cause headaches, make your muscles sore, and, of course, give you more stress. Learning to physically relax will help ease tension and decrease stress.
  3. Be Assertive: Often times people who deal with a lot of stress also feel like they have to help other people with their problems. It is important to remember that your problems and the things you need to work on are just as important and need to take precedence.
  4. Manage Noise: Noise can be a huge stress inducer. Getting away from constant loud noises can be a great way to combat stress. Removing yourself from a noisy environment to a more peaceful one can be very helpful.
  5. Wait: Waiting can be boring. Waiting is too often seen as a monotonous activity that must be done with no real purpose; however, look at waiting as a positive opportunity. See it as a chance to escape from from the rush and business of life.
  6. Change Your Perspective: Monotony can cause stress. Dealing with the same things day in and day out can be exhausting and stressful. Changing your perspective of the every day things you deal with as new opportunities can help reduce stress.
  7. Eat!: In stressful periods of life, remembering to eat can be a chore, but not eating can be very bad for you and cause more unnecessary stress in your life. Always remember to eat some food throughout the day, even if it’s just an apple or a granola bar.
  8. Get Active: We have all heard that working out helps relieve stress, but staying active will also help you stay in control during stressful times. Physical fitness gives you the stamina you need to deal with stressful situations. Fitness also helps release built-up tension you may be dealing with.
  9. Achieve Inner Peace: Whether through religion or otherwise, finding ways to be content with yourself is vital. If you can’t be at peace with yourself and where you are in life, stress will follow you everywhere. A great way to be peaceful is to always be in the moment of where you are right now rather than worrying about things outside of your control.
  10. Play!: Taking a break from everything going on around you is vital to maintaining a healthy level of stress. Children get recess, but adults need it as well. Laughing and having fun outside of the things causing you stress will help you relax and recuperate.

 

With these tips, hopefully your stress levels will go down! Take some time to take care of yourself this semester.

 

* written by Donny Turner

 

Matthew’s Monday Movie: “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”

December is here, folks, and that means Christmas movies. I’m sure everyone has a personal favorite or even a family tradition of what makes the best Christmas movie. From It’s a Wonderful Life to Home Alone, to even Die Hard (yes, it’s a Christmas movie): we all like to come together this time of year and watch films that entertain us and fill us with the Christmas spirit. Family is at the heart of this beloved holiday, but as we all know, family doesn’t always equal tranquility, peace on earth, and good will towards all. That being said I think one movie in particular embodies the stresses of the holiday season while highlighting what’s most important, and that film is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

This film holds a special place for me because it’s been a Christmas tradition with my own family. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is the third in its series, and it debuted in 1989 and was written by the late great John Hughes. Chevy Chase reprises his role as the lovable yet habitually clumsy family man Clark Griswold.  Beverley D’Angelo also joins the cast once again to portray Clark’s loyal wife Ellen. Clark’s son Rusty is played by a young John Galecki (you may have known him from his reoccurring role in the Big Bang Theory as the character Leonard Hofstadter). Clark’s daughter, Audrey, is played by Juliette Lewis. Lastly we have the character that is both simultaneously lovable and detestable: Cousin Eddie, played by Randy Quaid. Cousin Eddie is an iconic comedic character, one that many of us can relate to. A wacky, distant relative that always seems to be down on his luck, Cousin Eddie always seems to have his hand out due to chronic bad choices and misfortune.

The central plot revolves and round the Griswold family trying to get through the perfect Christmas with both sides of the family’s in-laws coming to their home to visit for the holidays.  This is exacerbated by Cousin Eddie and his family showing up uninvited, which leads to a number of hilarious shenanigans. Clark is also under intense pressure hoping to get his yearly bonus check to cover his holiday expenses. The film ends with the moral that it’s better to give than to receive and that family and relationships are worth more than any material gifts.

*Please note that National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is rated PG-13 for language and some suggestive situations.  It is at the Union University Library so check it out this holiday season.

 

 

Book Review: “Looking For Alaska” by John Green

looking for alaska

Over the past decade, John Green has been one of the most prominent figures in young adult books. He has written and co-written 6 books, and all of them have made it to the #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller list. His distinct writing style with young characters is seen throughout every single one of his books. John Green’s characters are typically sarcastic, romantic, and relatively pretentious. The books always focus around an ambiguous theme often relating to empathy or mental health issues. These ideas are seen in what may be his best work: Looking for Alaska.

Looking for Alaska tells the story of Miles, an introspective junior who is obsessed with the last words of famous people. He finds himself at a boarding school in Alabama, and while there, he meets two fascinating people: Colonel, his new roommate, and Alaska, an expressive, unpredictable, and emotional girl who seems larger than life. Alaska is obsessed with Simone Bolivar (His last words being “How am I ever to get out of this labyrinth”).  The labyrinth in this case is life and suffering, and that is what much of the book is about: figuring out how to get out of the labyrinth of suffering. The characters must learn how to understand the mental and physical issues that they all are dealing with, whether it is relationship problems, depression, or anxiety. A huge part of the book revolves around the relationship between Miles and Alaska.

The relationship that forms between Miles and Alaska builds the story, but this book is so much more than a romance. Alaska is dealing with heavy depression, and Miles feels  like an outsider, worrying about others’ opinions of him. The story follows them through their first semester until something tragic happens. The book changes from a cheery book about living at a boarding school (complete with pranks, copious amounts of school work, and drama) to something much darker. A new issue has arisen, and the main characters must deal with something much heavier than ever before. The majority of the second half of the book is about dealing with grief. The main characters have so many questions, and they don’t understand why bad things can happen to the people they are close to. This book tackles the great struggle of losing someone very near to you. It emphasizes how important it is to feel emotions.

This book is raw and real. Of course, the plot isn’t perfect; there are exaggerations, and many of the events would probably never happen in real life. I doubt many of the pranks in the story could ever work out the way they did, and many of the main characters are larger than life; however, the characters still feel real and personal. The struggles they face at 16 years old are issues many people at this age are dealing with. The book also stresses the importance of teenagers understanding that their issues are not minimal. Just look at one of my favorite quotes from Looking for Alaska:

When adults say, “Teenagers think they are invincible” with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail.

This quote is so important for teenagers today. Often times, teens feel overshadowed by adults, and they feel like their issues are minimal due to the fact that there are worse things going on the world, but the issues those teens are dealing with are real. To think that teens are lesser simply because of their age is ignorant. Teens do have power, and they need not forget that.

This book is a fantastic story about grief and learning to keep going after hard events happen and how to grow from strife. Miles eventually learns the way out of the labyrinth.

 

Content warning: contains strong language, drug references, and other suggestive material.

Check it out here!

 

*written by Donny Turner