October 23, 2012

Macmillan Confirms Ebook Pilot for Libraries

Is one of the big six publishers, Macmillan, ready to dip a toe back in the waters of library ebook lending?

As the demand for ebooks is growing day-by-day in the library world, publishers are changing the terms in lending e-books to libraries. Reportedly, Macmillan is working on a  Pilot Project to lend e-books to libraries. The company has not yet disclosed the details, but watch for more information.

July 25, 2011

Mango Languages iPhone/iPad App Now Available

Now you can take Mango Languages with you wherever you go, thanks to the release of the Mango Mobile Library Edition app for iPhone and iPad. This new app includes all of the languages that are available through Mango, and also has many features of the Internet version of Mango, including grammar and cultural notes, interactive phonetic spellings, and semantic color mapping.

To use  this new app, you will need a valid Troy Public Library card. You will also need to set up a Mango account, which you can do by visiting our Mango Languages site here. You device also needs to be running iOS4 or greater.

The Mango Mobile Library Edition app can be downloaded here through the iTunes App store.  For more information about this new app, visit this site.

July 18, 2011

NetLibrary is Changing to eBooks on EBSCOhost

Troy Public Library's NetLibrary eBook collection is scheduled to switch to a new platform called EBSCOhost.  All of our eBooks that were available through NetLibrary will be available on the new EBSCOhost platform.  Additionally, the NetLibrary name will be retired.

If you are a regular user of NetLibrary eBooks, you need to be aware that your NetLibrary account will no longer be available to you after this switch occurs. Any information that is associated with your account (such as notes you have taken in specific eBooks) will be deleted with your account. 

To use eBooks on the new EBSCOhost platform, you will need to create an EBSCOhost account. Account creation is easy, and you can find step-by-step instructions here.  For a tutorial on how to search for eBooks in EBSCOhost, please view this tutorial.

eBooks from EBSCOhost will function just like NetLibrary eBooks did.  They will not be downloadable. Instead, you will be able to view them directly from within your browser. They are non-holdable, can't be used on eReaders, but are always available for viewing. Additionally, after creating an EBSCOhost account, you will be able to make notes in eBooks you view.

We hope you try out eBooks on EBSCOhost. Please let us know if you have any issues by leaving us a comment.

June 27, 2011

SYNC is Back for 2011!

Are you interested in downloading some FREE eAudiobooks this summer? Now you can, thanks to Audiobook Community's SYNC campaign.

The SYNC campaign, which is back for 2011,  is designed to get more young adults listening to audiobooks. From June 23 through August 17, two audiobooks will be available each week for download. One will be a current young adult title and the other is generally a classic. Each week both books will share a common theme. All audiobooks used in the SYNC campaign are in the MP3 format and will work with both PCs and Macs. They can be transferred to a wide array of mobile devices. 

Additionally, OverDrive is distributing all of the SYNC titles. To download titles, you will need to install the OverDrive Media Console. After you have downloaded your free titles from SYNC, be sure to check out other OverDrive downloadable eBooks and eAudiobooks that are available from the Troy Public Library here.

In addition to free eAudiobooks, the SYNC campaign also features a discussion group on audiobookcommunity.com to discuss the books that are being offered.

For more on SYNC, including the release schedule for free eAudiobooks, go here, or text syncaya to 25827 to receive text alerts on when new eAudiobooks are available for download.

June 16, 2011

OverDrive Now Available for Windows Phone

OverDrive already has apps available for iOS, Android, and Blackberry. You can now add Windows Phone to that list. With OverDrive's recent release of their  OveDrive Media Console app for Windows Phone, there are now apps available for all major mobile operating systems.

The OverDrive Media Console app for Windows Phone offers the same features as other OverDrive apps for mobile devices, including:

  • The ability to download EPUB-format eBooks and MP3-format eAudiobooks directly to their device
  • The Get Library feature that allows you to easily find your local library that provides eBooks
  • The ability to easily return downloaded items early

You can download the OverDrive Media Console app for Windows Phone here

For a look at how the app works, watch this video produced by OverDrive:

June 14, 2011

Avoiding Online Scams

Recently, a patron called the Technology Center saying that she picked up a computer virus. She received a pop-up that her computer had been infected and a company was offering her antivirus software to clean her computer and protect her from future viruses. She decided to purchase the software, called Vista Antivirus 2011, clicked on the link and provided her credit card number. Shortly thereafter, her bank's anti-fraud division called to tell her that the company she was purchasing the software from was fraudulent and they cancelled the charge.

No harm done, right? Wrong!

By clicking on the link, the patron actually infected her computer with a malware that rendered her computer inoperable. She couldn't access the Internet, she couldn't access files on the hard drive, she couldn't even run a scan using McAfee, the antivirus software she already had installed on her computer. She now has the daunting task of cleaning the insidious virus from her computer.

Reader's Digest published an article about seven typical online scams and how to avoid them. You can read the article
here. Our patron fell victim to scam #4. Here is another good article about how to protect yourself online. Microsoft is also aware of this issue, and has an article regarding "scareware" scams here. Additionally, this article from the excellent (but unfortunately recently ended) technology blog Download Squad has some good tips as well on how to spot fake anti-virus scams.

If you’ve been victimized by one of the latest scams, don’t be embarrassed. Scammers work overtime at perfecting their trade and new viruses are introduced every day. And remember, you can call the Technology Center at 248.524.3542 if you have any questions regarding antivirus software.

May 26, 2011

OverDrive Apps Upgrade to v2.3

OverDrive, a supplier of downloadable eBooks and eAudiobooks to the Troy Public Library, has upgraded their OverDrive Media Console app for Android, BlackBerry, and Apple devices, including iPhones and iPads, to v2.3. This upgrade now allows users to return EPUB eBooks early and also makes the Adobe Digital Editions authorization process easier. 

If you already have these apps installed on your device, they should update automatically. If you are new to using OverDrive on your mobile device, you can download the mobile versions of OverDrive Media Console here.

April 28, 2011

Brainfuse Upgrades to HelpNow 3.0

Brainfuse, an online tutoring service available through the Troy Public Library, has upgraded its HelpNow software to v3.0. This upgrade includes an easier to use launch screen and also adds some new features, including:

  • Flashbulb: An online library of flashcard sets that cover a variety of subjects.
  • Brainwave: Records actions written on the Brainfuse Notepad while in a tutoring session. These recorded sessions can be saved or shared.
  • Test Center: The Test Center features practice ACT and SAT tests, and also a variety of state standardized tests.

As always, Brainfuse continues to provide online, live tutoring in a variety of subjects. Tutors are available from 2pm - 11pm, Monday through Sunday. Remember that Brainfuse is not just for students. They feature an Adult Learning Center where you can get help with Microsoft Office products, writing a resume, preparing for the GED, and much more.

Brainfuse can be accessed through the Troy Public Library's  website.  Click on the eResources link on the left-hand side of the page under the Library Links menu. Click on Online Tutoring, then Brainfuse. Remember, you need to have a valid library card to access Brainfuse.

Try it out and let us know what you think!