INWOOD, WV, July 10, 2006 – Howard County Library (HCL), Maryland, will assert a broad public mission of connecting readers to writers by integrating book purchasing, Overdrive e-resources, library-selected Web content, and other content with its AquaBrowser Library OPAC.
"Our goal at Howard County Library is to get library materials into the hands of our customers, so we're always looking at ways to make that easier, more convenient, and more intuitive," commented Brian Auger, HCL Associate Director. "We bought AquaBrowser Library, a visual, intelligent ‘search environment,' last year for just that reason. AquaBrowser Library, with the added insight and vision of TLC, helps us easily align and adapt technology to better serve customer needs. As new technologies and concepts join the technological mainstream, TLC and AquaBrowser allow us to quickly and efficiently adapt – and to add more layers of service. Our goal to meet or exceed our customers' expectations is made far easier with AquaBrowser and TLC."
Integrated Book Purchase
HCL's new integrated book purchasing capability will give patrons an instant purchase option. Currently, library catalogs can offer a simplistic link to online bookstores that requires patrons to enter a new search to find materials not available through the catalog. Moving beyond this limited option, the purchase option is an entirely new concept based on a cooperative relationship between HCL and SuperBookDeals.com. When a patron searches in the library catalog, holdings from the library's catalog and from SuperBookDeals.com's title collection will display. If an item is available in the combined catalog (library collection and SuperBookDeals collection), the patron will be able to place a hold, borrow the item, or simply purchase it. All necessary information -- real-time library holdings, circulation status, and item purchase information – will empower patrons with choices.
"Our company is delighted to participate in this new model of patron service," commented SuperBook Deals CEO Chris Myers. "Howard County Library's patrons will have more choices – they'll be able to choose library resources, or choose from a commercially available resource – SuperBook Deals' 1.2 million titles. These choices are integrated right into a patron search – strengthening the library's role in the community as a ‘one stop shop' for patron information needs. In addition, we're pleased to further the patron service model by offering patrons free shipping on any SuperBook Deals materials delivered to any Howard County Library location."
SuperBook Deals.com's free shipping is an added convenience for patrons, who can pick up both their library items as well as their purchased items at their local branch library. This will take the HCL library catalog another step toward being a one-stop source for borrowing and buying books.
Downloadable e-Books Integrated in Search
Patrons who want to immediately borrow a book or audiobook will be able to choose an integrated option to download e-books from Digital Library Reserve® at Overdrive, Inc.
Integrating Searching: Local Sources, Library-Specified Web Site
Completing HCL's new online experience for patrons will be the addition of AquaBrowser Library's local/additional sources integration to the HCL catalog. AquaBrowser provides integrated indexing and searching of additional local database sources, including photo collections, news indexes, and community information files. The added AquaBrowser focused Web crawler will enable integrated searching of library specified Web sites. These "best of Web" locations will be indexed and integrated with the library catalog. Predetermined Web sites from LC and Internet Public Library are included with the AquaBrowser "crawler."
These new services will be available to HCL patrons later this year.
For information about AquaBrowser Library, visit www.TLCdelivers.com/aquabrowser.
About Howard County Library
In 2005, HCL was ranked first in the nation among great public libraries by Hennen's American Public Library Ratings. That same year, patrons visited the library 2.1 million times.
About The Library Corporation
TLC is owned and operated by the family that founded the company over 31 years ago. The company's automation solutions include library automation, cataloging and authority control solutions, and RFID. A number of TLC offerings, including AuthorityWorks, AquaBrowser Library, Online Selection & Acquisitions, Automated Material Handling Systems, and RFID are designed to work with any ILS.