Goodreads now a part of the Novelist database

  • Post comments:0 Comments

I thought of writing this post after a patron sent an email to me asking if the library would consider training library patrons on the features of  the Goodreads site. I reacted instinctively. Goodreads? what about Novelist, does she not know about that wonderful database?  So now I can happily have a training session that combines the two because…. the Novelist database now includes links to Goodreads, the largest reader’s social network which contains reader reviews and ratings. If you haven’t used Novelist, this database is a great  resource for finding information about fiction titles for all ages. Two Novelist databases are currently available, Novelist and Novelist K-8. 

Links to Goodreads can be found in your Novelist search results and on the title detail page

Goodreads in Novelist

 Clicking on the link to Goodreads in Novelist takes you to the Goodreads review section for that book. If you have a Goodreads account, you can add a review, or if you don’t have one, you can create one from this page. The link to Goodreads opens in a separate window so you can easily return to Novelist.

For more information on this and other new features of Novelist, go to the Novelist Support Center. And take a look at the new Novelist Facebook page for tips on doing things with Novelist you may have never considered.

Ann

Continue ReadingGoodreads now a part of the Novelist database

eBooks roasting on an open fire….

  • Post comments:0 Comments

(Reposted from the 11th Stack Blog, with permission from the author.) 

Having trouble choosing the right eBook format? Click on the teeny pictures for a step-by-step guide to checking out an OverDrive ePub eBook. And remember, if you do happen to get snowed in this winter – burn* your paperbacks first. If you burn your eReader, your house will smell like charred plastic for weeks.

– Amy

* No, not really. Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh does not condone book burning. Especially not library book burning.


Continue ReadingeBooks roasting on an open fire….

TumbleBooks for iPad

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Susan from CLAV offered an overview of TumbleBooks in her November 11th blog post, Tumble Into Reading.  As she noted, stories, informational texts, puzzles and games are available 24/7 from any ACLA library’s website. The good news is that TumbleBooks has just announced that our patrons will be able to access the TumbleBooks picture book collection on the iPad and iPhone 4. The bad news is that so far, at least, things don’t always work quite as smoothly as they should, at least not in my limited explorations.

To get to the currently available iPad-compatible TumbleBooks, go to your library’s website on your iPad and click on the TumbleBooks link. (At CLP, you’ll find the TumbleBooks icon at the bottom of our Kids Page: http://www.carnegielibrary.org/kids/.) Click on Story Books then on the phrase “Click here for iPad-compatible titles.”

Select a title and click on the “iPad” button to launch the book of your choice. The book will appear in a small window at first. To expand, tap the “full screen” button. The books aren’t as interactive as some apps, so they may disappoint some savvy iPad aficionados. Still, it’s another way to make the engaging stories, animation and audio that TumbleBooks offers available to our users. And the fact that it’s all free should appeal to plenty of parents.

Currently there are 44 iPad books to choose from. Eventually TumbleBooks plans to create iPad content for the entire animated picture book collection by making non flash videos especially for the iPad. Unfortunately if you click on the green button that says “iPad Books” you’ll be taken to a page the features only a few of the iPad compatible titles. Hopefully that’s a glitch that will be corrected soon, but for now be aware that some users may be confused (and even cranky).

Another potential problem is that while some books played perfectly, others were quite buggy—including, ironically enough, Ace Lacewing, Bug Detective. Frequent pauses required pressing “play” repeatedly, though this may have been attributable to a weak Wi-Fi connection rather than an actual defect in the programming.

Lisa, Coordinator of Children’s Collections, CLP

Continue ReadingTumbleBooks for iPad

Visual Search Feature in GreenFILE

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Database search results can be overwhelming.  Especially when users are searching a broad topic.  A search for solar power in EBSCO’s GreenFILE database returned a list of 6,275 results.

GreenFILE Basic Search Results

Thankfully, there is a feature in the left-hand sidebar which allows users to filter by subject to refine their search.  However, users may find that once they choose a subject it is not what they were looking for and must backtrack!

GreenFILE Visual Search


GreenFILE’s visual search feature cuts down on backtracking and makes it easier for users to filter their search results.  In visual search, the results are immediately broken down into subject categories.  This clean display makes it easy for users to browse article titles and their related subject headings in order to choose the best subject filter, or filters.

In visual search, the resulting squares are only big enough to display the article title (or a portion of it) and the publication date.  Clicking on a square lets users view the article title, date, journal, author, and abstract without navigating away from the search results page (pictured below)!

-Kelly R, Sewickley Public Library of the Quaker Valley School District

Continue ReadingVisual Search Feature in GreenFILE

Citation Matcher in MasterFile Premier

  • Post comments:0 Comments

In MasterFILE Premier it is always useful to search under “Publications” to find an issue, or an article in a particular publication.
Another way to do this though, and sometimes a faster way, is to search for it by using the Citation Matcher search. The link to the Citation Matcher page from the MasterFILE homepage is found by putting the cursor over the arrow next to the “More” button located on the horizontal menu bar that is located near the top of the page.

A good example of a search on the Citation Matcher page would be if someone would want to see the latest Consumer Reports “Annual Auto Issue” which each year is the April issue.
You can get to the issue by typing Consumer Reports in the “Publication Box”, the date April, 2011 (typed this way: 201104) in the “Date Box”, and clicking on “Search”.

Tom

Continue ReadingCitation Matcher in MasterFile Premier

Tumble Into Reading

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Whenever a resource comes along to support kids and reading, it’s worth taking a look at. If it happens to be an e-resource, available 24/7 and free to library patrons, what’s not to like?

I had become a fan of Scholastic’s BookFlix (loved the pairing of fiction with relevant nonfiction titles and all the educator resources) only to learn it was being replaced with TumbleBooks. Having a distinctly different appearance, the Tumblebooks format simulates using a handheld e-device vs. turning the pages of a book. From making your own “Playlist” (preloaded selections also available) or choosing Audio Books, navigation is kid friendly. The animated illustrations are full screen and text is highlighted while being narrated. Six sections to choose from include: Story Books (the best selection), Read-Alongs, Tumble TV (new), Puzzles & Games (aids reading comprehension), Language Learning (Spanish & French) and Nonfiction Books. There are popular titles by well-known authors and the collection keeps growing. (I was excited to see Graphic Novels in the Read-Alongs, only to see that none are available yet.) To sum it up, TumbleBooks provides a fun, engaging and interactive way to connect kids with reading.

I use summer reading at our library as an opportunity to introduce young readers to TumbleBooks, as I did with BookFlix. My goal is to keep the children interested and involved with reading. After all, there are many ways to enjoy a book. Both databases achieve this goal. Along with author, illustrator and publisher information there is reading level, reading time, book reviews and accelerated reading information provided. On another note, it is a valuable literacy tool to promote for classroom use as well!

Susan
Youth Services
CLAV

Continue ReadingTumble Into Reading

Search Alerts in MasterFILE Premier

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Did you know that you can create a “search alert” in MasterFILE Premiere?   A search alert allows you to be notified any time an article on a topic of interest to you is added to the MasterFILE Premier database.  For instance, I have search alerts for local subject headings such as “La Roche College,” “Allegheny River,” and “Pittsburgh.”  Whenever a new article on one of my saved searches appears in MasterFILE Premiere, I receive an email with a link to the article. The articles can then be featured on our library Home Page or posted in the Local Interest Center.

For instructions on saving a search as an alert, click on “Help” in the upper right hand corner of the MasterFILE Premier home page, type “alert” in the search box, and select a topic for further instructions.


(Click to make larger.)

Mary Lee Resnick

Continue ReadingSearch Alerts in MasterFILE Premier

A way to reduce Overdrive holds list

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Are your patrons frustrated by the long waiting lists for popular ebook and eaudios? Do patrons checkout many titles at a time but perhaps only read a portion of them, then decide the title is not what they really wanted?  In September OverDrive introduced a “Sample” feature for patron use. These samples are for immediate access on reading devices and platforms. Customers can experience stories immediately on their computer or mobile device and decide if they are right for them, ultimately reducing holds and waiting lists.

When available, the word “Sample” will appear below a jacket. Samples may not be available for all formats of an individual title. Interested customers can easily click and enjoy up to 10 percent of each title before deciding to check it out or not. Samples vary as to length and content. (Eaudio sample content is about 2 minutes)

Samples can be accessed from a search results page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 or from a details page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The eBook sample will show up in readers’ bookshelf and look just like a regular eBook download. The eaudio sample will be directly downloaded to the user’s device.

By recommending usage of Overdrive Samples, patrons may be able to narrow their choices to titles of most interest.

Karen

Continue ReadingA way to reduce Overdrive holds list

Early Return of Kindle eBooks

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Several people have recently asked if it is possible to return Kindle ebooks early.  The answer is YES!  Here’s how to do it:

  1. Go to “Manage Your Kindle” on the Amazon site to access a list of your titles.  Public library titles are indicated by the words “public library” in orange.  (You will need to be logged in to see your library.) 
  2. Using the “Actions” drop-down button on the far right select “Return the book.”  (There is also a “Delete from Library” option, but that will just remove it from the list and it will remain checked out to you until the end of the loan period.) 
  3. Confirm the deletion when prompted. 
  4. The title will still be listed in your Amazon account, but if you select the “Actions” button again you will see that returning the book is no longer an option.  At this point you can delete the book from your list, if you wish. 

Screen shot instructions of this process are coming soon.

You can also return ePUB eBooks early from the OverDrive Media Console App. Make sure you are in the bookshelf portion of the app.  Tap “edit” at the top left of the screen.  This will bring up a red circle next to each book on your bookshelf.    Tap the red circle next to whichever book you wish to to delete.  You will be prompted to choose to delete and return the book or delete without returning.  Select the former and your book will be returned and removed from the app.

Sarah

UPDATE:  Amy Ergler provided directions for early returns using an Android device.  Thanks, Amy!

I’d like to point out that Sarah’s instructions for returning EBUP books early from the OverDrive Media Console App were written for iPad/iPod users. The process is different for Android users:

1. Open the App. You should be automatically taken to the bookshelf.
2. Long click (basically, press and hold) the book that you want to return until a menu pops up.
3. From the menu, choose “Delete,” the last option on the list. This will bring up a second menu.
4. From the second menu, you may choose “Return then Delete,” “Delete Only,” or “Cancel.”
5. Select “Return then Delete.” (Choosing “Delete” will remove the book from your device, but it will still be checked out to you.)

 

Continue ReadingEarly Return of Kindle eBooks

Welcome to The Virtual Lexicon!

  • Post comments:0 Comments

Do you ever feel like you don’t take full advantage of the databases we offer county-wide? (Do you sometimes even think you don’t really know all the databases available?)

How about downloading an eBook?  Do you feel like an expert?

This blog is designed to help you feel more prepared to use, recommend, and assist with all of the databases and downloadable services we offer county-wide.  It’s a joint effort of the Electronic Resources Evaluation Committee (EREC) and the ACLA Downloadables Committee.

Each week we’ll post at least one tip or trick that we think you’ll find helpful, or even just cool.  There will also be information here about upcoming trainings, where to find marketing materials for the databases and downloadables, and more.  Best of all, if you don’t want to have to worry about keeping track of blog posts, we’ll turn all the new posts into an electronic newsletter each month.

This blog isn’t all about EREC or the Downloadables Committee, it’s about how you use our electronic resources, so if you’ve discovered something great about one of our resources, let us know.  We love guest bloggers.  We also love suggestions for what you think we should cover, so comment away.

Continue ReadingWelcome to The Virtual Lexicon!