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OverDrive, the company our MyMediaMall consortium uses to provide eBooks and eAudiobooks, launched a new and improved media console for tablets and smart phones this week. Depending on your device, you may be prompted to download the new console, or it may happen automatically.

You will see a new splash screen, prompting you to add a library or add some books to your bookshelf, complete with visuals to point you in the right direction. Once you have your libraries and/or books added, more tutorial screens will walk you through the new interface, showing up when you go to your bookshelf or open an eBook. Each tutorial screen shows up once, but is available again using the option in Settings to show tutorials next time the app is started.

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Teen Tech Tutors---a new one-on-one program at Cook Park Library, in which volunteer teen tutors help out patrons with questions about their computers, mobile devices, social media and downloading library books----has been a huge success this summer! The last summer session will be Thursday, August 15, from 9:30 to 11:30am. But don’t worry if you can’t make it that day. The popular service will be offered from 9:30 to 11:30 on Saturday mornings in the fall, starting September 7.

This summer the teen volunteers have helped library patrons set up email accounts, add pictures and sound to PowerPoint presentations, play Candy Crush, upload pictures to Facebook, talk on Skype and download library ebooks onto their ereaders.

Although the summer program has been focused primarily on helping senior citizens, Teen Tech Tutors welcome patrons of all ages with technology questions. Bring your question (and your device if that’s what’s bugging you) and a Tutor will sit down with you and walk you through the solution that’s eluding you. You’ll find that even when teens initially seem to be stumped by a tech problem, these members of “the digital generation” are generally able to figure out the answer.

  • What: Teen Tech Tutors Drop-In (no reservations necessary)
  • Where: Cook Park Library in Libertyville
  • When: Saturday mornings starting September 7, from 9:30 to 11:30am.

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Perhaps you have noticed that now when you open our website on a mobile device, you see a new, slimmed down version of the site. Our regular website is difficult to navigate and read on a smartphone or any other device with a smaller screen. The new mobile site brings some of our most heavily used online functions to the forefront with an interface that is much better suited to small screens. This version loads automatically on mobile devices, but you can easily switch back to the regular website if you prefer.

Also, we now have a mobile-friendly version of our online catalog, which is specifically designed to be easily viewed and used on mobile devices. New features will be added to our mobile site as certain services, such as databases and the Events calendar, become more mobile friendly.  All of these changes are designed to help you enjoy library services while on the go!

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Our recent survey regarding digital materials yielded some useful patron feedback. Here are some highlights:

  • An overwhelming majority (73.1%) of respondents think we should balance digital services and collections with traditional print and media.
  • Most respondents feel that providing eReaders or other devices for check-out is not important, while increasing our eBook and eAudio content is very important. Our digital content offerings have recently expanded with the addition of the 3M Cloud Library and Freegal Music.
  • Of the software and new services suggested, the one survey participants were most interested in was a VHS-DVD conversion tool.
  • The survey revealed which video game platforms are used in most households, as well as the fact that many adults play video games. Additional games on the PS3, Wii and Xbox 360 platforms are being added.

Our thanks to everyone who completed the survey!

We are proud to announce that we now have VITA, an online index for use in local history and genealogical research. Currently VITA indexes obituaries from the Libertyville Review and a small but growing number of articles from various Libertyville newspapers, dating as far back as 1894.  Using VITA, you can do research electronically from anywhere!

Users can search using a name, phrase, or keyword and can even limit the search by year. Once you locate information in VITA, you can visit the library’s Cook Park location and use our new microfilm machines to read and print the obituary or news article. If you prefer, you can obtain a copy of a listed obituary or article by sending the relevant information (name and date) along with a SASE and $5 per item to:

Sonia Schoenfield
Reference Department
Cook Memorial Public Library
413 N. Milwaukee Avenue
Libertyville, IL 60048

Try VITA now!