Tag Archives: mobile software

Library News Update: 3D Printing Arrives at the Library, a brief history of the Bookmobile, and more

File photo. The Johnson County Library's Shawnee branch is located at 13811 Johnson Drive.

Libraries are often on the forefront of technology. The Chicago Public Library brings new meaning to that trend with its new CPL Innovation Lab. The Innovation Lab is free to the public and features three 3D printers, 3D printing software and various related tools. The CPL is also offering workshops to introduce patrons to the technology.

Chicago Public Library To Open 3D Printer Space

Read More

At Mosio we’ve been watching the ’3D Printer in Libraries’ trend grow and we’re all for it. Chicago isn’t the only one. Joining them is the Saxonburg Area Library in Pittsburg, which received a generous gift of one 3D printer for its patrons to explore.

Heard Off the Street: Library’s 3-D printer spits out all kinds of fun and learning

Read More

From technology innovation to the history of an innovative way to provide service to underserviced rural communities, the Chicoer has a story of the beginning of the California State Library Bookmobile. Long before digital reference was avialable, libraries reached out to patrons by physically bringing services to them. We might even say that the Bookmobile can be seen as the start of mobile reference

Check It Out: A library on wheels

Read More

We’re also keeping our eye and these trends in library technologies and services, from the Library as a retail space, to studies on how young people are using libraries today.

Dalby Library enters the digital age

Read More

Library system works to serve patrons’ changing technological needs

Read More

When Libraries Become Retailers

Read More

Siouxland Libraries Upgrade System

Read More

Libraries will release a “Top 10″ recommendation list starting this fall

Read More

THE LATEST ADDITION TO THE OBAMACARE ARMY: LIBRARIES

Read More

Library learning to grow on its own

Read More

Hutt libraries offer eReaders

Read More

New report maps young Americans’ library, technology use

Read More

Lake libraries add new database useful for finding friends, doing business research and more

Read More

Young adults like libraries and books, new study finds

Read More

W.O.W. bus brings books, technology to Missoula County

Read More

Healthy libraries, healthy communities

Read More

NFC tagged library lets you research books with your smartphone before you borrow

Read More

Library user numbers up 10,000 as eBook usage rockets

Read More

Queens Library Introduces Downloadable E-Magazines

Read More

Libraries offer patrons e-books

Read More

Westfield Library offers magazine collection online

Read More

Library use can reverse falling standards

Read More

Johnson County Library honored for innovation

Read More

Staten Island’s Stapleton library bigger, beautiful and chock full of books

Read More

Library to start Sunday hours

Read More

 

Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library News: Library system vital to community, Public Libraries Outnumber McDonald’s, Behold, Every One of the 17,000 Libraries in the U.S. Mapped

It seems like there’s a McDonald’s or Starbucks on every corner. They’re a sign of dependability. You might be surprised to know that there are actually more public libraries in the United States than individual stores of either of the mega chains. There are approximately 17,000 public libraries, while McDonald’s has approximately 14,000 stores and Starbucks has 11,000.

Public Libraries Outnumber McDonald’s

Read More

If you want to get a visual of what that looks like, you can view all the public libraries in America mapped out here.

Behold, Every One of the 17,000 Libraries in the U.S. Mapped

Read More

Seattle Public Libraries are reaching out to patrons in a creative new way, with their Books on Bikes program. Librarians will be bicycling to various outdoor events this year with small trailers that function as mobile libraries. The innovative outreach goes a step further by including mobile wifi connections that allow the librarians to demonstrate e-books and other digital technology the library has to offer. It’s a marriage of high tech and lo tech.

Seattle Public Library Puts Books on Bikes

Read More

Here are some more library news items we found interesting.

Library Enhances Digital Library

Read More

Devon libraries’ self-help mental health scheme

Read More

OUR VIEW: Library system vital to community

Read More

App puts Pima County Public Library on your smartphone, tablet

Read More

Rockford Public Library sees boom in digital borrowing

Read More

At Your Library: Empowering people to change their lives

Read More

The Future of Libraries: Short on Books, Long on Tech

Read More

Digital library to lighten the load in Ridgewood schools

Read More

New app launched to help library users in Gloucestershire

Read More

Ottawa library first in Canada to offer Google Chromebooks

Read More

The house of treasures: your library

Read More

Books on wheels: Mobile library, a hit

Read More

ALA 2013: The Library of 2020 Will Be…

Read More

New One Card Six Libraries service a major success

Read More

Sunnyvale: County’s first library vending machine serves books at the push of a button

Read More

Little Free Library – A good thing that’s in a small package

Read More

Box serves as portable library in Brooklyn

Read More

Sacramento Public Library named one of top 3 in North America

Read More

Red telephone boxes in Essex to become ‘mini libraries’

Read More

Libraries Check Out E-Sales

Read More

Kitchener library launches mobile app for smartphones and tablet computers

Read More

Rockford library adds magazines to its digital lineup

Read More

 

Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library NewsByte: The library is home to not only books, Library launches free mobile app, Vending machines latest library offering from Northland

Members of the public making good use of the Family Mobile Library during its stop at Reayrt y Chrink, Port Erin

Maureen Sullivan, President of the ALA, writes on the Huffington Post about the new Pew study showing that the vast majority of parents place a high value libraries. She discusses what libraries have to offer children and parents, from tangible resources to intangible experiences, such as instilling a love of reading and providing a safe community environment.

Libraries Offer Children Resources Not Available at Home

Read More

One of the intangible items libraries offer to all patrons, is the experience of browsing. This editorial talks about the personal experience of browsing at the library.

Libraries offer more than books – it’s a personal experience

Read More

In this difficult economy, people are finding the library can be an essential resource in finding a job. The Spencer Daily Reporter talks specifically about the ways the Spencer Public Library is helping patrons in their job search. They include access to computers and the internet and books on cover letters, resumes, and job searching. Additionally, the library website has links to skill building resources.

How the library Can Help You to Find a Job!

Read More

Read more about the ways libraries are helping people in these other news items.

The library is home to not only books

Read More

Clive library to launch new online catalog

Read More

Library makes changes

Read More

Parents Value Libraries’ Digital Technologies and Programs, Pew Research Shows

Read More

The New York Public Library Discusses eBook Pilot Projects

Read More

Get the library app

Read More

Even in Digital Age, Libraries Still Considered Crucial to Youth Development by Most U.S. Parents

Read More

College Libraries Transition to High Tech Learning Centers

Read More

Libraries; maintaining a role in the digital world

Read More

Mobile service helping those who can’t get to local library

Read More

B-BP Looking to Shore Up Library Programs, Enhance Technology

Read More

Little Free Library is a great, big idea in little, tiny space

Read More

Shorewood-Troy Library Now Offers Home Delivery Service

Read More

Vending machines latest library offering from Northland

Read More

Magazines go digital at Garfield County Libraries

Read More

More people using libraries with book loans up 3% in 2012

Read More

3D Printing Comes to Sunnyvale Library

Read More

New Rochelle Library is not bed-bug infested

Read More

New Library Program to Try Out Tablets & E-Readers Starts at 10 a.m.

Read More

Library launches free mobile app

Read More

Libraries unite to bump up size of catalog

Read More

The bookmobile gets the digital treatment

Read More

 

Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library Newsbyte: George W. Bush Library Opens to Public, Pew: Parents Love the Library, With Tiny Libraries – Bringing Free Literature to the Streets

Carlsbad libraries work to meet new demands, technology

Carlsbad libraries work to meet new demands, technology

Read More

Many libraries offer adaptive technologies to assist patrons with various disabilities. The Fort Frances library is trying to reach out to the community to let them know about the availability of technologies to assist the visually impaired, which have been in place since the library opened. They include the Topaz magnifier, which magnifies text up to 16X; Ruby, a handled magnifying device similar to Topaz; and SARA, which converts text to speech.

Adaptive technology equipment at library helps vision-impaired

Read More

The Pew Internet and Life Project found that 90% of parents surveyed think that libraries are important for their children, while 80% go further and say they are “very important.” Parents appreciate libraries because of the resources that they provide, and for how they encourage children to be readers.

Pew: Parents Love the Library

Read More

Read more about library services in these other news stories.

Value in the Library

Read More

Groundbreaking Online Library Intrigues Educators

Read More

Evanston Public Library creates new smartphone app

Read More

Kindles add to library’s offerings in technology

Read More

George W. Bush Library Opens to Public

Read More

Libraries have the clout, respect to be leaders in parent engagement: Margaret Bernstein

Read More

Rome library improves Wi-Fi

Read More

New library technology at Schneider Elementary helps students enjoy reading

Read More

British Library’s online harvest will paint ‘rich and vivid picture’ of life in the UK

Read More

Local libraries offer free online magazines

Read More

Library starts lending e-books

Read More

With Tiny Libraries, Bringing Free Literature to the Streets

Read More

Library doubles number of public computers

Read More

Hudson, Litchfield, Lyndeborough libraries embrace open-source software

Read More

Program brings tiny libraries to Bloomington

Read More

One-day survey shows how Washington libraries are used

Read More

County library system offering ebooks

Read More

Digital Bookmobile in the Tri-Cities

Read More

Library takes aim at grownups

Read More

Buhl Public Library Now Offers Audiobooks, eBooks

Read More

New library in Pasco is for whole community

Read More

Houston Public Library serves patrons in all walks of life

Read More

 

Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Library News: Digital public library with vast archive opens, ‘Libraries’ come in all shapes and sizes these days, US Presidential Libraries Contribute to Research, Education

Children read at the Centre de Lecture et d'Animation Culturelle (CLAC) in Byblos. [Photo courtesy of CLAC Byblos]

Library director hope smart phone app will help slow declining circulation

Read More

Sacramento library adds 3-D copier to its bag of tricks

Read More

Digital public library with vast archive opens

Read More

Library Usage Increases

Read More

Holyoke to promote child literacy by creating ‘mini-libraries’ at police substations, stocking cruisers with books

Read More

‘Libraries’ come in all shapes and sizes these days

Read More

York County Libraries to release mobile app, YCL Mobile

Read More

lsley Library provides digital local newspaper collections

Read More 

Libraries are vital to the community

Read More

Study: People still see value of libraries

Read More

Baylor Central Libraries buys almanac signed by Ben Franklin

Read More

Aztec Library expands technology with free tech classes, smartphone app

Read More

Library continues expanding collection

Read More

Cambridge libraries go beyond the bookmobile

Read More

Library releases app for phones

Read More

Libraries set to provide free wi-fi

Read More

Libraries still relevant today

Read More

US Presidential Libraries Contribute to Research, Education

Read More

Public libraries in Lebanon: a novel phenomenon

Read More

Siouxland libraries strive to be more than just book places

Read More

Public Library Extends Helping Hands for Computer Literacy

Read More

National Library of Scotland to hire ‘Wikipedian’

Read More

George Demko: Library is as relevant as ever in electronic age

Read More

Libraries are a tech and reading hub

Read More

Saving America for posterity at the Library of Congress

Read More

 

Found and listed by Mosio for Libraries – Patron Support Software for Libraries. All copyright belongs to original owners.

Mosio and Text a Librarian’s Post to Facebook Function: Now Live!

In February we launched a “Post to Twitter” function within the Mosio mobile messaging platform and Mosio’s Text a Librarian. We wrote a blog post about why this was good for libraries: user generated marketing.

I’ve pasted the original blog post about why it was good for libraries below. It’s great for every business and now the post to Facebook function gives organizations the ability to post questions and answers to the world’s largest and most powerful social network. If you’re a librarian you can read the information below as is, but if you’re a marketing or customer service manager at a company, simply replace the word “patron” with “customer” and “library” with “company” and you’ll see that the feature holds the same great function for either.

Enjoy!

Original Post

A “Post to Twitter” button on websites isn’t a new functionality, but after giving it some thought, we decided to add it to Text a Librarian. The reason? It’s User Generated Content that engages patrons and markets your library services.

SEO + Social Marketing + Patron Engagement
People searching online often type out an entire question in the search box, rather than just a few keywords, to see what results come up. Tweets are indexed by search engines like Google, Bing and soon Yahoo and when an individual searches online by typing out a question, your reference Q&A can appear in search results (aka helpful service + free marketing).

Here’s an excellent example of how the New York Public Library’s AskNYPL tweet of the question “What is the wingspan of a swallow?” is now indexed on Google, marketing their reference services.

Tweeting user generated content of funny, interesting and helpful questions and answers also engages Twitter-following patrons (and their followers through re-tweets) and informs them about your library’s reference services. We’ve seen great uses of Twitter by libraries engaging patrons with reference trivia and daily fun facts.

Spreading Love for Your Library
Many libraries are using Text a Librarian beyond questions and answers as a virtual suggestion box and for patron ideas and opinions about library services (questions, comments and feedback). When a patron texts good ideas and positive feedback, you can use the post to Twitter button to spread the love.

How Do I Start Using It? (for existing Text a Librarian customers):
The Post to Twitter button is an optional function of your service, controlled by your library’s Admin. Please visit the New Features section of your Text a Librarian microboard for details on how to turn it on.

Simplicity in Mobile Software: Showing Instead of Telling

Simplicity in Mobile Software Design

In Simplicity We Trust.

One of the most difficult parts about being a start up is focus. Initially you look at a bunch of different ways your product solves problems in the name of getting customers. After you get a handful of customers buying your product, you’d think that problem would go away, you’d have more confidence in what you are building. In fact, the opposite is true, because now you have even more people thinking of new interesting and amazing things that you should add to make your software better, faster and easier to use. The more features and functions you add, however, the harder your software is to use.

We’ve collectively made a decision here to stick to simple. With the mission of making mobile technologies simple and accessible to more companies and organizations, we’ve collectively come to realize that simplicity starts with us. For our Text a Librarian and 2-way text messaging software it starts with believing in the “Big Red Answer Button” (a mantra that came from hearing one of our customers explain why she loved using our software).

Big Red Answer Button

In most others, however, it has come down to one thing: Showing, not telling. This means using visuals, videos, use cases, etc to illustrate our usefulness and reducing the amount of words used. This direction feels good. It didn’t come easy, but with everyone on board, it is easier to explain what we do and people are getting it.

Here’s to simplicity in 2010!

For those of you interested in learning more, here’s a link to the Ten Laws of Simplicity. It has played a vital role (along with us collectively asking “is it easy to understand?” at every turning point) in use moving this way heading into the new year.

Text Messaging: The New 800 Number in Customer Service and Advertising Response

Traditional Customer Feedback

Click for Larger Image

Augmenting Toll Free 800 Numbers With Mobile Text Messaging for Customer Service
Americans are texting more than they’re talking, a trend that’s likely to grow more than slow down over the next 5-10 years. It’s easy and it’s quick. The popularity and usage of texting is no surprise as the on-the-go lifestyle ends up being more like living than a style type. The truth is, people are still going to use the phone to talk, but the growing usage of text messaging across all demographics shows more people prefer text messaging.

Customers Will Be Heard
The bell curve above illustrates how customer feedback has traditionally been given: in person, comment card, telephone and email. It used to be an extremely effective way to give feedback to a company. But with the growth of social media, customers are being heard by their friends, co-workers and strangers whether they are happy or unhappy with a product or service. Some companies have taken to Twitter to handle customer service issues, but “we’re on Twitter” is not a social media customer service strategy (and it’s certainly not a mobile customer service strategy).

I’m not suggesting companies using Twitter don’t continue to do so, but reacting to a tweet about a bad experience is like someone yelling “this food sucks!” in a crowded restaurant: you can run over and help your upset patron, but the damage has been done. That’s the obvious reason why so many companies are jumping into the social media space: they have to do so to protect their brand image. But there’s another way to protect one’s brand image: make yourself more available to communicate directly with your customers.

Text Messaging: New Customer Conversations

Click for Larger Image

Text Messages: Direct Customer Conversations
If people are texting twice as much as they are talking and they’re using text messaging and mobile apps on their phones to update their status and communicate with friends, companies need to make themselves available via the mobile channel. People are posting their loves and dislikes for a product or service on social media services because it’s easy to do so. Integrating text messaging gives companies an opportunity to start a customer conversation using the medium customers prefer and keep the conversation between them. Is it going to stop everyone from ranting on updates and blogs when they’re upset? No, but it opens up dialogue with more possible customers at a fraction of the cost of 800 tolls or chasing down posts online.

Text Messaging Beyond Customer Service: Direct Response in Marketing and Advertising
I hate the word “blast” when it comes to mobile marketing and it’s a word used far too often in our industry. Customers don’t want to be blasted on their mobile phones. In fact, it’s the last place they’d want to be communicated with in such a way. The mobile medium offers so much to traditional advertising with more and more research showing mobile getting better response rates than online advertising.

We soft launched a mobile advertising response product with a few marketing and advertising agencies and are getting great feedback. The system lets customers help themselves get more information immediately using their mobile devices. Text messaging as a method of responding to ads, whether they be print, TV, billboards, posters or flyers is going to be a huge hit in 2010 and beyond. Used in customer service, direct response or as a helpline for a brand, mobile text messaging is still in its infancy. What’s better, you don’t need “an app for that” to use it in your business.

For information on how Mosio can help you set up mobile text messaging customer satisfaction, service and feedback systems,contact us or visit www.mosio.com.

Reference Librarians: SMS / Text Messaging Skills Are Not Needed, Your Research and People Skills Are

Reference Librarians: SMS Skills Are Not Needed, Your Research Skills Are
Reference Librarians: SMS Skills Are Not Needed, Your Research Skills Are

As excited as I am to see that more and more libraries are seeing the value of offering text message reference service to patrons, I find it troublesome to read posts and articles claiming that “librarians need SMS skills now.” It’s unnecessary pressure being put on an already tough job market at a time when new technologies are flying quickly at everyone in the working world at an alarming rate. Texting in the U.S. is more popular than talking on mobile phones and you can bet that a large % of your patrons send texts on a regular basis, regardless if you are at a public, academic or corporate library. SMS reference services increase your patron outreach, provide them access to you wherever they are and mobile reference is definitely here to stay. But to say that this increase in text message usage means you need to get skills doing the same is like saying English teachers need skills in rapping because many of their students are writing hip hop rhymes. It’s helpful for them to be aware of and embrace it, but it’s totally unnecessary for them to grab a microphone and sign up for the next MC battle they can find.

Although a handful of us are active participants, being a texter is not a job requirement at Mosio / Text a Librarian. In fact, if a candidate stated that they sent/received 200 texts a day or that their last phone bill had 10,000 SMS messages on it, I would sincerely question what they spent their days doing. In fact, one of the people doing our market research is not a texter. Do you know what that person is great at? Research. That’s why we hired him, that’s why we love his work. He knows a lot about the mobile industry and can find information for us faster than anyone I’ve ever met. His skill set in research and his abilities to produce it for us is why he is here.

Should your library embrace and offer text messaging reference services?
Absolutely, according to many librarians and from the hustle and bustle of things around the office at Mosio, the entire industry sees it as a need.

Should you run out and buy a smart phone and get on a SMS plan so you can learn how to communicate with your patrons utilizing the SMS reference service?
No, unless you want to. If you’re curious and you want to try it out, we think that’s great. If you feel that it’s a big part of the future of libraries and think your library should offer it, even better. That is the most important part.

Here are three reasons why you don’t need to have SMS skills:

1) Mobile phones are an inefficient way to answer reference questions.
Texting on a phone is not and will never be faster than typing on a computer. Mobile data speeds will never be faster than internet speeds. Phone processors will never be faster than computer processors. Even if you send and receive twice as many text messages per day than the average American teenager, it doesn’t mean everyone else does and you still will not be able to help patrons faster.

2) You have and use a computer connected to the internet.
You don’t need a gadget along side the computer you use at the reference desk. If your library just bought a phone and signed a 2 year contract so you could offer text messaging reference, I’m sure there’s an element of excitement about having the phone at the library. The form factor is cool, but  you don’t need a phone, you just need the computer you’re already using.

3) There are better things you can do with your time to be of great assistance to patrons.
In a glance at five job posts/descriptions for reference librarians, there are three keywords that I found show up consistently: research, resources and experience. Patrons need you to help them find information, they don’t need you to be a good texter.

Our belief in this is why we chose the tagline “Patrons text questions. Librarians type answers.” Text a Librarian’s technology enables libraries to implement text messaging reference at their libraries without SMS skills. Patrons have those skills, but if you don’t, you’re not alone and we’re here to help.


Bookmark and Share

Library Software and Reference Technologies: Software as a Service (SaaS) Value

SaaS as a lower cost strategy

SaaS: A lower cost strategy for libraries.

While reading a great article by Marshall Breeding about library automation and the state of the economy, I was very pleased to see Software as a Service (SaaS) listed as a lower cost strategy:

“[a SaaS] arrangement involves a fixed, annual subscription fee, but it saves the library the costs of purchasing software licenses, server hardware, and technical staff that would have otherwise been needed to maintain a local installation.”

This sentence does a great job of explaining the value of what Mosio’s Text a Librarian offers libraries looking to extend their outreach by offering text messaging reference services to patrons. While I feel like we do a good job of nailing it in a single sentence, “No software to download, no hardware or mobile expertise required,” his next paragraph, although specific to automation, made me literally say “yes” out loud as I read it.

“Vendors like SaaS since it allows them to set up large-scale implementations of their software and provide instances of it to individual customer sites at fairly low unit costs. Libraries appreciate having a predictable annual cost that encompasses the entire project. For libraries that have technical personnel available, going with SaaS for some applications can help reduce their workload and allow them to attend to higher strategic priorities. For smaller libraries that may not already have staff members with technical skills on board, SaaS may be the only way to move forward with automation projects since the cost of hiring technology personnel may be prohibitive.”

Like nearly all businesses, organizations and libraries in the current economy, we’ve had to cut costs, do more with less, all while working at extending our outreach and output. We’ve been able to do so by using new processes and technologies to make us more efficient. Web-based applications are helping us to get more done. The exercise has been great, the team has been forced to think differently, but also to come up with new ideas about time-saving features for the product. It has been showing in everyone’s work. As we continue to grow and as the economy rebounds and improves, we’ll keep the processes and continue using the technologies, so we can keep offering higher levels of service to our customers as they will to their patrons.


Bookmark and Share