Talking Book and Braille News
Talking Book and Braille Services
Oregon State Library
250 Winter St NE
Salem, OR 97301-3950
(503) 378-5389 or (800) 452-0292
Fax: (503) 588-7119
Issue 56 · Summer 2013 · Editor: Joel Henderson
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BARD APPS ALMOST HERE
are very, very happy to share with you that the National Library Service is
finishing up development and beginning beta testing of their new BARD Mobile
apps for Apple iOS (iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch) and Google Android
devices! We’re very excited to see a
light at the end of this tunnel, and we know many of you are just as excited as
we are. Here are some of the important
details regarding the release of the BARD Mobile apps:
apps will be free to download
iOS app will be available earlier (mid-summer) through the iTunes Store, and
will run on all iOS versions
Android app will be available later (early fall) through the Google Play
market, and will only work on devices running version 4.2 “Jelly Bean”
Dixon, the NLS consumer relations officer, sat down with a blog called Blind
Access Journal a few months ago and demonstrated the features and functions of
the BARD Mobile app for iOS. We’re
assuming the Android version will be very similar. The apps will enable users to read books that
either appear in the user’s BARD Wish List, are listed on the recently added
books and magazine page, or are manually loaded onto the device from a
computer. At this point you won’t be
able to search for and read any book available in BARD using the BARD Mobile
app on its own (NLS is hoping this feature will be added later). However, adding a book to your Wish List is
much easier than downloading, unzipping, and transferring the book onto a flash
drive, so BARD Mobile will make the process of reading BARD books simpler and
the app itself will take advantage of the accessibility features built into iOS
and Android. There will be 4 tabs for
Bookshelf, Get Books, Settings, and Now Reading. The Bookshelf separates items by audio,
Braille, books, and magazines, then you can sort items within these categories
by author, title, or latest added. Much
of the playback features of the BARD Mobile app will be similar to the advanced
digital player, including Menu, Next, Previous, and Bookmark buttons. BARD Mobile will remember where you left off
in each book just like all digital players, and users will be able to choose
default settings for things like speed, tone, verbosity, and background playing
(whether or not a book stops playing when you close the BARD Mobile app). The full 26-minute interview with Judy Dixon
that details more of the apps features and functions is available in streaming
audio or download at www.blindaccessjournal.com. Just look for the entry titled BARD Mobile
from February 27, 2013.
If you want to receive a release notification from us once these apps go
live, you’ll need to join our email list.
This list is the same one we use to email out our newsletter, so if
you’re already getting our newsletter via email you’re all set. If you’re not on the list already, send us an
email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name
and phone number (so we can make sure we have the right account) and the email
address you want us to add to the list.
OUR “BIG” MOVE
the beginning of May, we here at Talking Books moved into some cozy new office
space. Don’t worry, though, we haven’t
moved to a new address, and we aren’t going away by any means. It’s not technically brand new space either,
since it used to be our old circulation area.
Essentially we’ve all squeezed into one room instead of two, cutting our
office space by about half. Now we’re
the Talking Books Superleggera model: a lightweight, stripped-out, precision
racing crew ready to respond to whatever curves lie ahead.
There were a couple of days when books weren’t able to be mailed out or
checked in because of construction going on, and we really appreciate your
patience as we settled in. We still have
our front desk area, so you’re still coming to the same place if you ever need
to visit us.
We are pleased to announce the official
transition of the NLS audio magazines from cassette to digital cartridge. Users who had been receiving cassette
magazines have now been getting them on digital cartridge for a few months, and
we invite any interested user, especially our newer ones, to also sign up for
subscriptions. There are a wide variety
of magazines to choose from, and a full list is available as a handout or on
our website. These magazines are also
all available for download using BARD.
There are a few significant changes to the
digital magazine program. The most
important change is that magazines are being mailed directly from the
producers, and must be returned just
like the audio books you receive.
The loan period for weekly magazines is 3 weeks, and the loan period for
monthly magazines is 6 weeks. If you
receive several magazines, you will most likely have several cartridges in
circulation. The return mailing card
will have the producer’s address and the usual Free Matter postage already
printed on it, so you return magazines the same way you return books.
With the introduction of loan periods for NLS
digital magazines, users will also receive overdue notices if their cartridges
are not returned on time. Users will be
allowed 3 overdue cartridges before their magazines are put on hold. However, magazine overdues will not impact a
user’s book service from our library, and as always, if you download your
magazines directly from BARD there are no loan periods to worry about.
To distinguish magazines from books, the NLS
has introduced distinctively colored mailing containers and cartridges for the
digital magazines. The mailing
containers are a bright red color with the Library of Congress book flag logo
on the lid, and the cartridges are blue with a print/Braille label that
includes the word “Magazine” on it.
Lastly, if you subscribe to several magazines
you may find multiple titles on a cartridge.
To jump from one title to another you can use the player’s bookshelf
feature. Simply press and hold the green
Play/Stop button until the player beeps and says “bookshelf,” then use the fast
forward or rewind buttons to toggle through the magazine titles. Once you hear the title you want, press the
Play/Stop button again.
To request a copy of the digital magazine handout,
please contact us at 800-452-0292 or email@example.com. If you find a magazine you want, contact us
JOIN THE IRENE PRICE
years ago, Thomas Price of Grants Pass left a large portion of his estate to
Talking Books. His bequest was made in
memory of his wife Irene, who enjoyed Talking Books throughout her lifetime. Thomas’ bequest made it possible to establish
the Talking Books endowment fund. Since
then, many other visionary individuals have helped build the endowment fund
through their gifts. We named this group
of individuals the Irene Price Society.
a legacy bequest is a way to support a service you love like Talking Books in a
long-term way. This process can be done
in several ways: by naming Talking Books in your will or living trust, or
designating Talking Books as a beneficiary of an individual retirement plan or
life insurance policy.
We invite you to
become a member of the Irene Price Society. There is much more to tell you
about creating your legacy. Read more on our website http://www.oregon.gov/osl/TBABS/Pages/Planned-Giving.aspx, or contact Robin Speer at 503-378-5014 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
tactile Braille American flag was presented to Talking Books by the Oregon
Columbia Regional Group (OCRG) of the Blinded Veterans Association. The
dedication ceremony for the flag was held on Thursday, February 21st. Governor
Kitzhaber, President of the OCRG Rae Hail, State Librarian MaryKay Dahlgreen, our
Public Services Librarian Elke Bruton, and veterans from the Salem area were all
part of the dedication ceremony. The flag is now mounted on the wall of our
front desk area for all to see and feel.
Talking Books is very proud to have this flag that honors not only our
blind veterans, but all American veterans.
SURVEY THANK YOU
the month of March our Delta Gamma volunteers made calls to 720 randomly
selected users in order to find our how well they feel our library is serving them. Their ratings and suggestions for improvement
are key for us to know where we are doing well so we can keep it up, and how
our library needs to adapt moving forward.
Your feedback really does make a difference, and while we may not be
able to make every change that is recommended, we are committed to being a
creative and innovative library for our users. We sincerely appreciate your support and encouragement.
Your kind words, thoughts, and actions
mean as much to us as we hope our books mean to you.
residents and staff of Gracelen Terrace in Portland have started an amazing new
activity program called Helping Hands, where residents and staff work together
to create and sell crafts, with 100% of the proceeds being donated to a local
charity. Residents contribute their time
and talents to whatever degree they are able, each one wanting to have a
meaningful role in their community. Some
complete entire projects, while others work on a specific part of a
project. Together they create beautiful
and useful crafts like greeting cards, quilts and blankets, bird houses, and
even dog biscuits.
residents are mostly on low fixed incomes, many of them with disabilities, but
they all wanted to find a way to help those in need around them. Supplies are purchased using the Gracelen
Terrace activities budget and donations of staff and family members. As a result, the Resident Council of Gracelen
Terrace raised and donated $1500 for food boxes in less than a year! We here at Talking Books want to commend the
generosity of the residents at Gracelen Terrace, as well as their Activity
Director Gunilla Orr and the rest of the staff.
Thank you for being active participants and role models committed to helping
JULIE KLAUBER AWARD
Bruton, Public Services Librarian here at Talking Books, was recently awarded
the Julie Klauber Award. This award is
given to the person who works most creatively and innovatively with Keystone
Library Automation System (KLAS) in their daily work and shows outstanding
service to their library. KLAS is the
computer system we use to track circulation, catalog our books, and manage user
accounts. Understanding how to use KLAS
to its full potential enables us to work smarter with the resources we have. Through Elke’s tenure with Talking Books, she
has streamlined functions, collaborated with KLAS to improve the system, and
provided new means of serving our users more efficiently. As part of the award, Elke was able to attend
the KLAS User’s Conference in Chicago.
Join us in congratulating Elke on this award.
HOW TO: REQUEST BOOKS
been registering a lot of new users recently, and one of the most common
questions we hear from them is “how do I make requests for books I want?” So we thought we’d include a requests
refresher for all our users to help clarify the process.
it is important to make sure everyone knows you can all make requests, no
matter how you are served by our library.
Users who get books by automatic selection are just as welcome to make
requests as users who only get requested titles.
are a variety of ways to make requests with our library, but they all start
with you finding a book you want. Some
books you will know are in our collection because they appear in our
catalogs. Other books you will hear
about from friends, family, the New York Times, or other sources. In these cases, you will need to contact us
with the title and author of the book so we can check to see if it is in our
collection. If you’re not quite sure of
the title or author’s name, give us as much information as you can and we’ll
ask our friends Google and Amazon for the exact answers.
a book is in our collection then it has also been given a number (i.e. DB
71234). Telling us these numbers is the
easiest way for us to enter requests into your account. To tell us what books you’d like to request,
you can call us at 800-452-0292, email us at email@example.com, or send us completed catalog request
forms or a letter to 250 Winter St NE, Salem, OR 97301.
users also have the option of making requests through our online catalog. You can use our online catalog to search for
books, then add them to your book basket and “checkout” using your assigned
User ID and Password (contact us if you’re interested). This option is great for people who prefer a
more self-service model. A link to the
catalog can be found on our website www.TBABS.org.
go out as often as they are available.
If you are an autoselect user, our computer system will try to send you
books on your request list before it sends you random selections. However, there are going to be instances
where a book you request is not immediately available, since we only have a
certain number of copies of each book.
If you request a book that is not immediately available, we
automatically add you to the waiting list.
Lastly, there are a few important things to remember about
requests. Our system is set up to send
out newer requests first, so sometimes if you frequently make a lot of requests
the older ones will get buried. We
recommend trying to keep your request list at a reasonable length, taking into
consideration how many books you read a month, how quickly you read through a
book, etc. Requests do expire after one
year, and are purged each year in early April.
NLS WESTERN REGIONAL CONFERENCE
May 14-16, our library hosted the biennial NLS Western Regional Conference
right here at the State Library in Salem.
Staff from other Talking Books libraries from all over the western
states, NLS representatives including the new Director Karen Keninger, and KLAS
staff met to discuss best practices, share ideas, and look ahead to the future
of the Talking Books program. Some
highlights from the conference were the announcement of a change in NLS policy
to allow electronic signatures on applications (meaning they can be faxed or
scanned/emailed to us now), and a demonstration of some new circulation
techniques that will help in our continuing efforts to improve efficiency. Our library made an excellent impression, and
several staff from other libraries were blown away by what we accomplish with
much fewer people.
FRONT DESK HOURS
Our front desk hours are 9AM – 12noon and 1PM – 4PM, Monday through
Friday. You can call anytime 24/7, but
these hours are when we return messages, answer calls, and reply to
emails. Calls are handled in the order
they are received, and we regularly have voicemails to respond to before we can
answer incoming calls directly (especially in the mornings and after
weekends). However, rest assured we’re
committed to helping you as quickly as we can.
TBABS will be
closed on the following legal holidays:
July 4, Independence Day
September 2, Labor Day
This newsletter is available in large print, audio, Braille, or on our website at www.tbabs.org. Call TBABS if you would like to change the format you currently receive.
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