Virtual Reality is Actually Here with Google Cardboard at the Library!

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The actual reality we deal with every day can be pretty intense, but it is sadly lacking in the ability to step inside historical scenes, fly like a bug, safely jump off buildings, or run with dinosaurs. Luckily there’s Virtual Reality to help fill these sad voids in real life, and technology has progressed far enough that you no longer need those giant headsets seen in weird 1990s movies like The Lawnmower Man, just a viewer and a smart phone to plug into it.

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Because we support and, yeah, share your need for having dinosaurs in your life, the library now has Google Cardboard VR viewers to lend out.  Just check one of these out from the Borrower Service desk, download one or more of the many VR apps on the market from your provider of choice, slide your phone into the viewer, and you’re off!

Not sure what’s out there for VR apps?  We have you covered there, too, with our handy Virtual Reality Guide, listing a few of the many free and paid apps available as well as information on how to find even more.

The Google Cardboard viewers can be checked out for up to three days at a time, and can be renewed twice.  Contact us if you have any questions, and be sure to let us know how and where you’re using VR, what apps you like best, and what you named your new dinosaur friends.

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Study tool: Zotero

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Research season has begun! If you’re collecting all your class readings for the semester, starting your Capstone project, or just want to keep your research more organized, you should check out Zotero, a free tool (for the lowest amount of storage—you can pay for more space) described on their website as “a personal research assistant.”

Here are some of the things Zotero can do:

  • Save PDFs of articles you found in a database, or links to web resources with the browser widget
  • Access files you’ve saved by logging into the Zotero website
  • Create different folders for different classes, projects, or aspects of your topic
  • Share articles with other people by adding them to a group
  • Add your own notes to each article, such as how it relates to your thesis, what pages to focus on, or the assignment they’re for
  • Generate citations in APA, MLA, or Chicago format (make sure to double-check them for accuracy just in case!)

Zotero is available for Mac, Windows, and Linux. To get started, go to the Zotero website, make an account, and download the program.

IMPORTANT NEWS: Bryant’s Exit from the HELIN Catalog

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In case you missed the email messages that have gone out to the Bryant community this summer, the Douglas and Judith Krupp Library is leaving the HELIN catalog and will be moving its catalog and backend systems to OCLC’s WorldShare Management System (WMS).  You may have already used the catalog this summer, as the links from our website were switched over to WMS several weeks ago, but we expect everything to be fully migrated by September 1st, if not sooner.

Due to the advanced timeline, lending and borrowing activities between Bryant and other HELIN libraries will pause during the last stage of the migration period.  We have worked with the HELIN office to come up with final lending and borrowing dates:

LAST DAY TO REQUEST – AUGUST 12 (last date for HELIN libraries to request Bryant books, and last date for Bryant to request books from HELIN libraries).

LAST CHECKOUT DATE  – AUGUST 19 (this gives a full week for the books to be in transit to Bryant or from Bryant which allows time on the hold shelf for patron pickup)

DUE DATE – SEPTEMBER 7 (this allows for a 19 day borrowing period and for 2 weeks for overdue notices and to collect on overdue books).  If your library users cannot return Bryant items by this date, please let us know and we can switch the HELIN checkout to an interlibrary loan.

Once we are fully migrated, Bryant holdings may be searched via the WorldCat link in the HELIN catalog or by searching directly in Bryant’s new catalog at http://bryant.on.worldcat.org/discovery  The catalog is still evolving, but will allow you to search for items here at Bryant, throughout the state of Rhode Island, and in libraries worldwide.

Bryant will remain a member of HELIN until December 31, 2015, but even beyond that date we will still be an active member of the library community both here in Rhode Island and beyond our borders, and will work with patrons and other libraries alike to foster cooperating and connect people with the information resources they need.

This will be a time of enormous change for everyone, ourselves included, and we are happy to speak with anyone about any questions, concerns, or even fears they may have.  Our top priority is always providing our patrons with the best service possible and this is not a move we make lightly or without consideration.  We think this will be of great benefit to all of our community, and ask for your patience, understanding, and feedback during our transition period and beyond.  All of our contact information can be found at this link.

Schoolhouse Rock: Library Study Room Edition!

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study room slideFinal exams are almost upon us and we’re getting tons of study room requests, and we’re happy to fill them of course, but if you’re not doing it correctly we have to cancel them and you run the risk of losing out on study space.  So just remember the simple rules shown above in groovy 1970s fashion.

And if you need more information on our study room request policies, be sure to visit this page!

The Library’s Spring Newsletter is Here

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Lots of big things happening at your very own Douglas and Judith Krupp Library, and you can read all about it in the spring edition of our newsletter.

newsletterNew department names!  A new librarian!  New databases!  New books!  New locations for supplies!  How can you possibly hope to keep track of all these changes without a scorecard?  Read up on all of this newness, as well as looks back at the recent Geek the Library campaign and some Bryant history, a profile on one of our student workers, and more.

Click here to read the newsletter online and stay in the know!

We geek languages, and so can you with Mango

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As you’re probably aware, we have 7 laptops available for check-out that are dedicated to the use of the Rosetta Stone language software – one language per laptop, available in Spanish, French, Chinese (Mandarin), Italian, Russian. Japanese, and Gaelic.  But if you haven’t had any luck getting ahold of one these laptops – or maybe would like to learn a language beyond the 7 we currently offer – we have another solution for you that you won’t have to wait around for and is available to you via your web browser even as you read this: Mango Languages.

mango logoMango is a web-based language-learning tool that is available to you cheap-as-free thanks to the fine folks at AskRI.org and accessible through the Articles & Databases page on the Krupp Library website (just scroll down to the M’s).  Create an account and in just a minute or two you’ll be ready to go.  Once you’re logged in, explore your account dashboard a little – you’ll see places to keep track of the languages you’re studying and the lessons completed, as well as tabs for support and a translation tool – and then click the Languages tab to see what’s available to you.

Mango screenshot - languagesAs you can see, there are over 60 languages available.  Sure, you can learn Spanish, French, or Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese), but you can also go for Greek (modern and ancient), Icelandic, Swedish, Hebrew (traditional or Biblical), Swahili, Tagalog, or even Pirate (what, no Klingon or Old High Gallifreyan?).

Basically, you have options, and you don’t have to wait around for someone to return that Rosetta laptop or worry about your place on the waiting list.  Give it a shot… you sure as heck can’t beat the price.

The iPad Mini is here!

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ipadminiThe library now has 3 iPad Minis to loan out!

Same deal as the iPad 2… you can check it out for 7 days, with an option to renew for an additional 7 days, and these are available to Bryant students, staff, and faculty only.  If you come by and we don’t have any available, you can ask to be put on our waiting list.

It’s the iPad, but smaller.

But, you know, bigger than your phone.

Either way, enjoy it, and let us know what you think!