Technology

“"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."  —  Arthur C. Clarke

The Memphis Public Library & Information Center is on the forefront of information technology. Library customers can access their library account, online resources and databases from any library in the system. Using the Library web site, customers can also access these resources from home or office computers, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Wireless technology in several library locations and the mobile services JobLINC and InfoBUS allow customers to access up-to-the-minute information, including job listings and foreign-language newspapers via the World Wide Web. Recently, satellite technology was implemented for the InfoBUS to allow access to even more timely services. Rosetta Stone multimedia language learning software in a variety of languages has also been added to all the InfoBUS computers.

The Internet: Extending the Reach of the Library
The Internet has become an increasingly useful tool for Library customers. The 24-Hour Library search engine available via the Library’s web page (www.memphislibrary.org) provides an easily searchable database of the Library’s cataloged materials and access to useful databases on nearly every subject imaginable. Customers can also renew checked-out materials, and access personal Library account information. Expert analysis by Library professionals has resulted in the compilation of useful Internet resources available via the Library’s Web page, including the Virtual Health Information Center, suggested genealogy sites and a list of kid-friendly web pages.

The Library and 2-1-1
The approval of LINC (Library Information Center) to serve as the local provider for community services information via the 2-1-1 telephone number creates an opportunity for the Library to upgrade its technology and expand its informational and referral services. The latest I&R software allows for continually updated community services information, better demographic tracking and improved follow-up with social service providers.

The Library of Tomorrow
Technology has not changed the function of the Library, but it has changed the way our customers use it. They seek faster, more efficient ways to access information and the Library works hard to meet those needs and reach more people than ever before. Keeping up with emerging technologies is a challenge, but with support from those who recognize the value of technology in today's world, the Library will be able to keep pace and stay relevant to today's library customers.