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Mobile Computing Project: A LSTA technology mini-Grant Initiative

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  • The University Libraries desires to bring our services to users of mobile devices like cell phones, BlackBerries, and Pocket PCs like iPaqs. We can't do this with the regular Web site, because it is not friendly to mobile devices, as this picture demonstrates. The regular site is designed for monitors and mice: too vast for mobile device screens and too large for cell phones which can only scroll up and down. Also, cell phone and BlackBerry users can't browser our regular site at their leisure, because every minute they must scroll through the site is a minute drained from their monthly service plans.
  • Our mobile Web site is designed with these devices in mind. Most of the pages are short to minimize the time users take in scrolling down the page. Those pages that couldn’t be shortened are divided into separate pages with a links page to bind them. The site’s pages use fonts that make them easy to read on a small screen. The pages are interwoven with links that take users to library service information, then back to the home page. Some pages have numbered links users can activate with a cell phone keypad. On all but the home page, pressing # on a cell phone takes users to the home page. There is no place on a cell phone or BlackBerry to store images, so they are kept small to make them quick to load.
  • This is a diagram of the current Web site. Most information on library collections and services are now available to mobile device users. Yellow boxes have lists of numbered links to page, which users can reach with a keypad number or a stylus tap.
  • The mobile Web site is now available for testing at dub dub dub dot bsu dot edu slash libraries slash mobile slash. Any questions? If you have any questions after the presentation, my e-mail address is mawest2 at bsu dot edu. For the more adventurous, you can try the feedback form on the mobile Web site. Thank you for your time.
  • B303 faust

    1. 1. The Mobile Computing Project: an LSTA Technology Mini-Grant Supported Initiative Bradley D. Faust Assist. Dean for Library Info Technology Services Ball State University Libraries
    2. 2. Presentation Overview <ul><li>Why mobile technology should be important to libraries </li></ul><ul><li>The Mobile Computing Project at the Ball State University Libraries </li></ul><ul><li>The BSU Libraries mobile web site </li></ul><ul><li>Two mobile development efforts </li></ul><ul><li>Possible future work </li></ul>
    3. 3. Mobile Technology and Libraries <ul><li>The University Libraries and Ball State University are eager to embrace new information technologies </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile computing is a creative, new space with great opportunities for library services </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile technology is supporting teaching and learning (Course Management Systems, i.e. Blackboard) </li></ul>
    4. 4. Mobile Technology and Libraries <ul><li>Smart small-screen devices represent changes in the way we communicate – libraries should have a role in this environment </li></ul><ul><li>Some may see this as novel, but our customers use these technologies today </li></ul><ul><li>Students and others are embracing mobile technologies at increasing rates </li></ul>
    5. 5. Mobile Project - Why <ul><li>Observation that so many library customers have powerful mobile computing devices </li></ul><ul><li>Desire to reach these individuals through the devices they use </li></ul><ul><li>Rapid expansion of wireless voice and data network services </li></ul><ul><li>Determine the role and opportunities for libraries in this technology space </li></ul>
    6. 6. Mobile Computing Project <ul><li>Funded by a LSTA technology mini-grant from the Indiana State Library and IMLS </li></ul><ul><li>Work began in May 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Addressed the possibilities of integrating library services and collections (resources) with mobile computing devices </li></ul><ul><li>Original focus was on data enabled cell phones, evolved to include other mobile devices </li></ul>
    7. 7. University Libraries Mobile <ul><li>Regular web sites unfriendly on mobile devices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Images are too large for small screens </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pages too long for scrolling </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pages too big to fit in memory </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wasteful of minutes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>JavaScript, other scripting languages do not work </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. University Libraries Mobile <ul><li>How does the Mobile Site work better on small screen devices? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Short pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy to read fonts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy to navigate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minimal images </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anywhere access </li></ul></ul>
    9. 11. CardCat Mobile <ul><li>Custom Gateway to CardCat system designed for mobile devices </li></ul><ul><li>Smaller graphics </li></ul><ul><li>Accessible through library mobile web site on main page </li></ul><ul><li>Ran into issues – moved forward with MOPAC </li></ul>
    10. 12. CardCat Mobile <ul><li>Uses Z39.50 based services </li></ul><ul><li>Developed using Microsoft Visual Studio Development environment </li></ul><ul><li>Served as a basis for our grant request </li></ul><ul><li>It works! </li></ul>
    11. 14. Mobile Journals <ul><li>Searchable index of Journals and other Serial Communications available from the University Libraries (search titles) </li></ul><ul><li>Limits results to online titles </li></ul><ul><li>Provides hot links to online resources </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly navigation </li></ul><ul><li>Format and design fits small-screen devices </li></ul>
    12. 15. Mobile Journals - Examples
    13. 16. Mobile Journals - Examples
    14. 18. Mobile Video <ul><li>Provides access to low bandwidth versions of library promotional videos </li></ul><ul><li>Provides access to low bandwidth versions of instructional video </li></ul><ul><li>Work best on PocketPC device with a Wi-Fi connection </li></ul><ul><li>The video streams are in Windows Media format </li></ul>
    15. 20. Possible Future Work <ul><li>Build out the CardCat Mobile product </li></ul><ul><li>Build out the Mobile Journals product </li></ul><ul><li>Build other library services </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Text messaging about available material </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Investigate access to academic information resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘Mobilize’ our material resource locator </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Look at blog, RSS, or wiki solutions for mobile devices </li></ul>
    16. 21. University Libraries Mobile <ul><li>Available at </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/mobile/ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We are interested in comments and suggestions to improve the site </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback Form on mobile web site </li></ul>
    17. 22. Web Resources <ul><li>University Libraries Mobile Site </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/mobile/ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>University Libraries Mobile “Jump” page </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/library/mobile/ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mobile Computing Project Web Site </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/viewpage.aspx?SRC=./lits/mobileproject/index.html </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ball State University’s mobile site </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://mobile.bsu.edu </li></ul></ul>
    18. 23. Project Team <ul><li>Bradley D. Faust – [email_address] </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Assistant Dean for Lib Info Tech Services </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Andy West – [email_address] </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile Computing Developer </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stan Shannon </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Special Projects Developer </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Project Co-Investigators </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Arthur W. Häfner, Ph.D., M.B.A., & Bradley D. Faust </li></ul></ul>
    19. 24. Thank You <ul><li>This project was supported by the Institute of Museums and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered by the Indiana State Library. </li></ul>
    20. 25. Contact Information <ul><li>Bradley D. Faust </li></ul><ul><li>Ball State University Libraries </li></ul><ul><li>Muncie, Indiana </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>(765) 285-8032 </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/library </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/mobile </li></ul>