September 22, 2011
Essex Library patrons–as part of the LION Library system’s Overdrive service, may now download eBooks to their Kindles. The announcement last spring that Kindle compatibility would take place sometime in 2011, followed by the hint this summer that this would happen in September, has proved to be true.
We have put together a few screenshots to walk you through the process. As always, if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at the Library.
Overdrive has kept the download process simple: browse the catalog for a book*,
click “Add to Cart” for your selection
This will redirect you to the Amazon website where you will see the “Get Library Book” button along with a window to select which Kindle device or app you will use for the download.
Next, after dutifully browsing Amazon’s commercial offerings, click “Download Now”.
You can download the book directly using a WI-FI signal depending on your device/app or connect your Kindle to your computer using a USB cable. If using the latter, when prompted, use the “Save As” option and click OK.
Open your Kindle file on your computer and drag and drop the book into the Documents folder. It will appear on your Kindle immediately.
*It should be noted that the Overdrive service is very popular and many, if not most, of the popular titles will be checked out at any given time. Simply put the book on hold by clicking Request/Hold and you’ll be notified by email when it’s available.
September 21, 2011
Library patrons have been awaiting the ability to borrow ebooks to read on their Kindles. It was hinted earlier this summer that downloads to the Kindle would go live in September. That day is here, if you are a patron of the Seattle Public Library or the King County Library System. These libraries have been selected for the beta testing and it seems to be going well so far. There is still no information as to when Overdrive ebooks will be available for Kindle users nationwide.
What we can tell you is that the ebooks will be available for all Kindle models as well as Kindle apps for other devices and the Kindle Cloud Reader. You’ll have to download via WI-FI or connect your Kindle to a computer with a USB cable as the 3G wireless service is not supported. When you check out your books you’ll be redirected to the Amazon website to login to your Amazon account (or create one if you don’t have one already) and then provide your library card number. As expected, Amazon will be including some offers for you to buy books during the process. Amazon’s “Whispersync” technology will also preserve your digital notes and bookmarks in case you buy the book from Amazon later or check it out a second time. The service is only available in the U.S.
Stay tuned for updates as to when Kindle compatibility will arrive for LION library patrons.
May 16, 2011
On Friday, May 20 at 7 p.m., the Essex Library will present architect Rafael Pelli as part of its Centerbrook Architects Lecture Series. Mr. Pelli, a Partner with Pelli, Clark, Pelli will present “It’s Not Easy Being Green; Interesting Environmental Issues In Architecture From Around The World”. The talk will be held at Essex Meadows with wine and cheese served beginning at 6:30 p.m. Click here for directions to Essex Meadows.
Rafael Pelli is the Partner directing the Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects New York office, established in 2000. Since that time, he has directed the design for several of the firm’s New York projects. These include Bloomberg Tower, a 1.4 million-square-foot, mixed-use high-rise in Midtown that contains the new headquarters for Bloomberg L.P. and the residential condominiums One Beacon Court. Mr. Pelli was the designer of the reconstruction of the World Financial Center, and the lead designer for a new U.S. Federal Courthouse in Brooklyn. He was also the designer for three high-rise apartment buildings in Battery Park City: the Solaire, the Verdesian and the Visionaire. The three buildings have achieved significant milestones in sustainable design.
For more information on the 2010-2011 Centerbrook Architects Lecture Series, please click here.
April 27, 2011
OK, better late than never. We missed posting this on Earth Day last week (April 22) but it’s been a busy time for Libraries…and Librarians. What is it about the Essex Library that makes it a ‘green’ Library you ask?
- For starters, like all Libraries, we renew and recycle books, audiobooks, magazines and DVDs. We also renew and recycle computers.
- We recycle our newspapers, magazines, paper, bottles and cans, and plastic bags–including the bags our newspapers arrive in.
- Our lighting includes many fluorescent bulbs and we use motion detectors and timers to keep lights off when not in use.
- The Library is heated and cooled, in part, by a geothermal system.
- The Library uses green cleaning supplies throughout.
There are other efforts made during the renovation including recycling demolition and construction waste, using low-water toilets, and using construction materials and products from local sources.
Let us know what else we should be doing to keep Essex green.
April 25, 2011
We’ve been predicting for a while now that Amazon would eventually concede to the pressure to allow its Kindle users to download books for free from the OverDrive eBook lending services offered by public libraries…and that day has come. Last week Amazon announced that they signed an agreement with OverDrive with the service to be launched for Kindle users at an unspecified date later this year. This is great news for Kindle owners who’ve, up to now, been turned away from Libraries offering the OverDrive service.
Currently, the OverDrive eBooks can be downloaded to many devices including the Barnes & Noble Nook, Borders’ Kobo, Sony eReaders, Apple devices and many, many others. To see the complete list, click here. Service to Kindle owners will maintain the same lending rules–lending periods and number of downloads allowed as delineated by your local Library. The Essex Library allows patrons to check out up to 4 eBooks each with a lending period of 14 days.
Here’s a statement from Amazon with details regarding the new deal:
SEATTLE—April 20, 2011—(NASDAQ: AMZN)— Amazon today announced Kindle Library Lending, a new feature launching later this year that will allow Kindle customers to borrow Kindle books from over 11,000 libraries in the United States. Kindle Library Lending will be available for all generations of Kindle devices and free Kindle reading apps.
“We’re excited that millions of Kindle customers will be able to borrow Kindle books from their local libraries,” said Jay Marine, Director, Amazon Kindle. “Customers tell us they love Kindle for its Pearl e-ink display that is easy to read even in bright sunlight, up to a month of battery life, and Whispersync technology that synchronizes notes, highlights and last page read between their Kindle and free Kindle apps.”
Customers will be able to check out a Kindle book from their local library and start reading on any Kindle device or free Kindle app for Android, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, PC, Mac, BlackBerry, or Windows Phone. If a Kindle book is checked out again or that book is purchased from Amazon, all of a customer’s annotations and bookmarks will be preserved.
“We’re doing a little something extra here,” Marine continued. “Normally, making margin notes in library books is a big no-no. But we’re extending our Whispersync technology so that you can highlight and add margin notes to Kindle books you check out from your local library. Your notes will not show up when the next patron checks out the book. But if you check out the book again, or subsequently buy it, your notes will be there just as you left them, perfectly Whispersynced.”
February 26, 2011
Once upon a time. For all us librarians wondering how the fairy tale of e-books might play out, we’re seeing it become a horror story instead. DRM (digital rights management is the term for technologies used to restrict/limit how digital materials are accessed) is the poisoned apple being used by publishers to kill a library’s ability to make e-books available to its patrons. Prior to February 24th, Overdrive– a national vendor of digital materials to libraries, could offer customers e-book downloads on an unlimited basis. Harper Collins has just mandated a limit of 26 check-outs of its e-books through their vendors and distributors to libraries, including Overdrive. Even more troubling, Harper Collins wants to limit which patrons a library lends its digital materials to. But that’s another blog post.
Libraries are at an important crossroads regarding access to digital materials. We want to provide the services and materials our patrons want–in the formats they want. Those of us too small, read: too poor, to contemplate an Overdrive service on our own, purchase through a consortium. In the case of the Essex Library, we purchase Overdrive services through the LION Libraries consortium. With a limit of 26 check-outs on any given e-book—and you can anticipate other publishers will be climbing onto Harper Collins’ restrictive bandwagon, LION’s 365,000 patrons will find their ability to access Overdrive’s e-books so severely diminished as to be useless. Already there are publishers, including two of the largest, Macmillan and Simon & Schuster– who don’t allow any library circulation of their e-books.
What can libraries do to keep e-book patrons happy?
Author Cory Doctorow advocates a library boycott of all DRM-protected materials. Librarians across the country are disgusted, discouraged and angry. You can follow their comments on Twitter at the #hcod hashtag. None of this can be resolved until publishers come up with a viable business model for digital books. It won’t serve them well to distance their authors from potential readers, digital or print. The publishing industry as a whole is in trouble and alienating libraries who serve millions of readers by spending billions of dollars on materials just doesn’t seem productive. A call to arms, in the guise of library consortia joining together, collaborating and using their combined buying power to persuade publishers to loosen, or just plain lose, the restrictions on digital materials has been issued by librarian Matthew D. Hamilton.
We need a happy ending here for everyone…authors, publishers, vendors and readers. Anybody got any great ideas?
January 25, 2011
Foiled again! This time predicted bad weather has forced Dr. Henry Lee to postpone his highly anticipated Crime Talk at the Essex Library originally scheduled for Weds. January 26th. Check back with the Library 860 767-1560 for more information about a snow date in late March/early April to be held at the Valley Regional High School Auditorium which should allow us to welcome all interested parties.
December 14, 2010
Dear Santa, I’ve been hearing about how popular ebooks are and I was thinking I should get an eReader and try them out. My Library offers the Overdrive downloadable ebook and audiobook service so I can get all my ebooks for free. I like the Kindle from Amazon. Could you put one under my tree this year?
Dear Virginia, What a terrific idea for a gift this year! I’ll be delivering a lot of eReaders to those on my Good list. I should advise you though that the Kindle doesn’t work with the Overdrive service. The Nook, Kobo, Sony eReaders, Apple’s iPad and iPhones and Android devices all are compatible with Overdrive. If you happen to get one of the compatible devices, HoHoHo, check out the Overdrive Q&A for step-by-step instructions and you’ll be reading your books in a flash!
September 29, 2010
It’s Banned Book Week ( September 25th – October 2nd). Have you read a banned book lately?
Banned Books Week is the only national celebration of the freedom to read. It was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than a thousand books have been challenged since 1982. People challenge books that they say are too sexual or too violent. They object to profanity and slang, and they protest against offensive portrayals of racial or religious groups–or positive portrayals of homosexuals. Their targets range from books that explore contemporary issues and controversies to classic and beloved works of American literature.
There are hundreds of challenges to books in schools and libraries in the United States every year. According to the American Library Association (ALA), there were at least 460 in 2009; the ALA estimates that 70 to 80 percent are never reported. If you think challenges to books only occur in the Bible Belt or in some backwoods town in Idaho, think again. The challenges have occurred in every state and in hundreds of communities. Below is a map of banned or challenged book locations from 2007-2009. This map is drawn from cases documented by ALA and the Kids’ Right to Read Project, a collaboration of the National Coalition Against Censorship and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression.
The New York Times has a post on their blog with recommendations for 10 ways you can celebrate Banned Books Week. The American Library Association has provided a list of the 10 most frequently challenged books in 2009. Topping the list are the ttyl, ttfn, l8r, g8r books by Lauren Myracle. There’s nothing like a banned book to get a teenager to read, goes the old saying.
If you need more convincing in a humorous tone, watch the YouTube video below from the American Library Association.
September 23, 2010
The Wall Street Journal will premier its new weekly book review section on Saturday, Sept. 25th. Editor Robert Thomson stated that the changes to the WSJ weekend edition weren’t about challenging competitor The New York Times: “Nationally, there’s no contest now,” Thomson said. “We’re more than twice as big as The New York Times. They’re not a serious competitor.” Bold words, given the general adoration of the Times Sunday Book Review. It couldn’t be a better time to bring out additional publicity for worthy reading material. The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune and L.A. Times have all cut their book review sections, much to our dismay.
The Essex Library will have the Wall Street Journal and its new book review section on Saturday. Come by and take a look at it.