Resources close at hand: Library materials available to download to mobile devices

Did you receive an iPad, Kindle Fire, Nook or new smart phone for Christmas? Once you’ve figured out the numerous features, you’ll be ready to learn about recently updated technology that allows you to read or listen from any one of these devices.

 From previous articles I’ve written for the Business Times, you might remember that I work as the human resource director for Mesa County Libraries. What’s relatively new is that I’m also one of the selectors for purchasing ebooks and eaudiobooks on the topics of leadership and management. This part of my job makes me feels like a kid in a candy shop — so many books and only so much to spend. And, of course, I want to check out and read all the books on the list.

The library’s OverDrive service allows customers to virtually check out ebooks and eaudiobooks for up to 21 days to read or listen. This product comes in the form of an application for your mobile device, and books download in just minutes. One of the features people like is that when the book is due, it expires on your device without the need to “return” the book — or pay overdue fines.

As budgets remain tight for training or purchasing books on leadership and management, borrowing an ebook or eaudiobook to further your knowledge offers a wise way to stay abreast of trends in leading and managing employees at your business.  As you sit in the airport or your physician’s waiting room or are a passenger on a trip to Denver, books can be read in the palm of your hand.

After you’ve had a chance to digest the fact you can get all this information for no charge, you’ll need to understand how the different formats work with the variety of devices available on the market.

Here’s a basic description of the choices — with the caveat that things change so frequently, you might have to check with one of our reference librarians for specific details.

Downloadable books come in these basic formats: Kindle or ePub for ebooks and mp3 or WMA for eaudiobooks. If you’re using the OverDrive application for your ebooks, most ereaders, smartphones and tablets can accept the ePub version of a book and also a Kindle version once the Kindle application has been downloaded to your device. Also note that ebook borrowing recently has been upgraded so Kindle users may download books at no charge from the library.

EAudiobooks come in two formats:  mp3 and WMA. Android devices download mp3 eaudiobooks while iPhones, iPads and iPods will download mp3 eaudiobooks directly to those devices and can also accept some WMA eaudiobooks when downloaded to a computer first and then transferred to the Apple devices.

While this might appear confusing at first, a dedicated downloadable borrower will soon get the gist of the process.  Additionally, some eaudiobooks offer the reader a choice of which format to download. To know for sure which format is compatible with your device, visit the OverDrive Web site located at www.overdrive.com/Resources/DRC/Default.aspx.

To get a taste of all that is available, go to the Web site located at www.mesacountylibraries.org and look for the downloadable book section.

If you’d like to use the mobile “app” that has been recently rolled out by Mesa County Libraries, go to the Boopsie App in your marketplace or app store and download it directly to your mobile device. This is a really quick way to review books available for downloading.

As you venture into the world of cyber reading, the Mesa County Libraries staff is available at eight locations throughout the county to answer any questions that might arise. It’s also possible to schedule a 30-minute instructional session with a librarian by calling 243-4442.

In addition, workshops are available to demonstrate how to download library items to ereaders. Upcoming sessions are set for 6 p.m. Jan. 2 at the central library at 530 Grand Ave., 2 p.m. Jan. 9 at the Fruita branch at 324 N. Coulson, 6 p.m. Jan. 10 at the Clifton branch at 590 32 Road No. 6F and 10 a.m. Jan. 27 at the Orchard Mesa branch at 230 Lynwood St.

Website:
Barbara Burr is human resource director for Mesa County Libraries. Burr also belongs to the Western Colorado Human Resource Association based in Grand Junction. For more information, log on to www.wchra.org.
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Posted by on Dec 27 2011. Filed under Business News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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