Libraries and mobile devices

Our new mobile web page
Our new mobile web page

Today is the Handheld Librarian conference. You can follow the tweets from the conference.  Around 11am I wish I had registered for it. Looking at all of the tweets about the technical problems, I’m not so disappointed. I am hoping that some of the information will be made available later on, because this is a subject I have been thinking about a lot for my library.

Recently, I created a very basic mobile webpage for our library.  At the moment, it contains three main pieces of information:  library hours, contact information, and links to a (very) few databases with mobile interfaces.

In my search for databases to include on this list, I was surprised by the low number of vendors with such interfaces.  I also wondered exactly how users would use these mobile resources.

In addition, we have been paying attention to what is happening with Kindle eBook readers.  There seems to be a lot of debate about how/if libraries can lend these out or take advantage of the eBook market in anyway.

I am an avid reader of eBooks on my iPhone, through the Kindle reader for iPhone and now the new Barnes and Noble eBook reader.  So far, the Kindle reader is easier to use.

I’m looking forward to seeing what other libraries are doing with mobile devices to provide content and services.

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Back to work

I have been on maternity leave for the past 2 1/2 months, and I am starting to get back into the swing of things.

Some of the projects currently on my list:

  • Revise our science and mathematics subject guides. They were neglected before I came on board as science librarian and are in need of a big overhaul
  • Weed the science reference collection (with my reference librarian colleagues)
  • Put together a presentation about information literacy in Chemistry for a small workshop
  • Analyze our print collection in the sciences, in case we have any money to buy more books next year
  • Working with biology faculty to develop some information literacy strategies for the first year biology lab
  • Miscellaneous web design projects, including a possible transfer of the library website to the Drupal CMS
  • Ongoing assessment of our information literacy program

So, what do I tackle first upon my return? The easy things: possible style sheet changes for our website to change the look of our links. Sometimes the best way to get started again is to do a few easy things before hitting the larger projects.

Oh, and I spent some time finding more science librarians to follow on Twitter, and editing my LinkedIn profile. That counts as work, right?