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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

MLC Tech News.

A few weeks ago, I attended a fantastic library conference -- and before you ask, "Is that an oxymoron?" let me tell you: it is rare that each and every session of any conference, library or no, appeals to your interests. But the Mid-South eResources Symposium and the MSU Emerging Technologies Summit (held back to back on a Thursday and Friday) were just fantastic!

The most interesting thing I learned seems kind of obvious, but I hadn't heard it explicitly stated before: if your product isn't available through a mobile device, you're dead in the water. If you can't access a library's catalog on an iPhone, people aren't interested. Sometimes it's difficult to see things as a non-librarian, but yeah, I agree.

To that end, I'm excited to announce two things: one, that you can download the iLib2Go app for iPhones and search MLC's collection! While I have no information on when it will be available for Android, the app is free for Apple products. Once loaded, you choose your library, and off you go. If you log in, you can reserve books, see what items you have checked out, etc. I know I'm a library nerd, but I think it's pretty cool. I did a test run and reserved Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. When I returned to work from the conference, the book had been pulled for me and was waiting on my desk! Service!

The second thing is that you can now text us your questions. We have a special text-only phone number, 601-208-0868, and encourage you to use it! (If you're a librarian and are curious, it's free through Google Voice. I have a how-to I can send you.) We plan to put the number on all of our study tables so that if our patrons have a question while in the stacks -- "Hey, did my article print?" "Where are the books on Pomerarians?" -- they can stay put and get their answers fast.

We're very excited to join the 21st century in these two exciting ways.

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