Thursday, November 15, 2007

SimCity Societies - gaming goes green?

SimCity Societies is an interesting new game (Windows only, so far) which purports to teach about the ecological and economic consequences of various forms of energy production, from the folks who brought you "The Sims" and the folks who brought you "British Petroleum":
BP and EA have partnered to create SimCity Societies, the city-building game that deals with the causes and consequences of global warming. The game presents options for city power generation through various high- or low-carbon means, making available solar power, wind power, hydrogen power, natural gas and biofuels — the same alternative, cleaner forms of energy BP is working with leading researchers, scientists and engineers to provide.

Can computer entertainment (sponsored, in part, by the petroleum industry) be an effective tool for raising awareness of energy footprints and climate change? Should libraries purchase this game? And more importantly: anyone around UW-Madison played this game yet? Want to write us a review?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Eco-Librarians: Changing Our Communities One Step at a Time

Eco-Librarians: Changing Our Communities One Step at a Time is the title of a Continuing Education course offered at UW-Madison SLIS Continuing Education, March 31 - April 21, 2008.

The course description says," There is no doubt our environment is in crisis. Melting polar ice caps and rising sea levels, not to mention the quandary over using one square of toilet paper or two, is enough to overwhelm even the most stalwart eco-warrior. We may not be able to change our environmental woes in giant leaps, however, as a library staff, we can take many small steps to engage, enlighten, and educate our populace. This course will provide a forum for exchanging ideas on how to be effective eco-librarians through simple practices, programming, and some out-of-the-recyclable cardboard box thinking."

Instructor Pamela Bosben has over 26 years experience working in the South Central Library System and has been the Director of the Rosemary Garfoot Public Library in Cross Plains, WI since 1991. In July 2006, the community opened the first newly constructed LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) public library in the state of Wisconsin.

To register, go to