How do you search the Web?

Escape from the same old search engine routine and try DuckDuckGo. This search engine offers robust personal privacy options and gets you where you want to go quicker. The results page is less cluttered, better organized, and offers links to topics related to your search terms. The meanings tab (for an example, see this search on Belgium) can get more precise results

duckduckgo

Or consider fetching your search results with the metasearch engine Dogpile. For best results learn the about your search engine, like these Dogpile tricks of the trade.

dogpile

Get more precise results by using these Bing advanced search keywords or these Google Search operators.

Using Lynda.com: a testimonial

I am an advocate of “work smarter not harder” and Lynda.com is helping me practice what I preach. Vol State provides free access to this online education service with its video courses in software, creative, and business skills. In the future I hope to use these courses to explore some personal interests but currently my focus is improving my job skills.

A course on Microsoft Outlook taught me to use rules more effectively and send certain emails to folders. This combined with using flags for follow-ups turned my Inbox into a minimalist’s showcase. I am using courses and playlists in Lynda.com to learn other skills needed for special work projects.

My ah-hah moment with Lynda.com came when I decided to pursue certification as Microsoft Office Specialist through the free MS Certification program offered at Vol State. Since I am a long-time power user of Word I simply reviewed the topics listed on the Microsoft website before taking the test. The MOS test was hard and I didn’t complete it but I passed. I used a Lynda.com course and its accompanying practice files to prep for the Certification test in Excel. I completed the test with time to spare and scored higher than on my Word certification despite only using basic Excel functions on a regular basis.

Start working smarter with help from Lynda.com.

Lynda

There’s a database for that …

By Livy Simpson

Want to listen to classical music? Music Online: Classical Music Library is waiting for you to tune in.

Want to watch Patrick Stewart (aka Captain Picard) in Hamlet? There is a reserved seat for you at the BBC Shakespeare Plays. Looking for other streaming options? Films on Demand and VAST: Academic Video Collection offer thousands of videos on a multitude of topics.

Want to learn Japanese? Mandarin Chinese? French? German? Italian? Korean? Check out PowerSpeak Languages provided by TEL.

Looking for examples of art and ethnographic objects from Gabon? Reliquary images from the Kota and Fang peoples plus thousands of images from museums and collections around the world are available in Artstor Digital Library.

And for the English essay or research paper due next week? We have many periodical and scholarly journal databases waiting to be searched.

What’s the catch? You have to use the library database links and login with your Vol State username and password.

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Reliquary guardian figure (mbulu ngulu) [created by the Kota People of Gabon]; courtesy of ARTStor