Newsletter of the Oregon Talking Book
and Braille Library
State Library
250 Winter St NE
Salem, OR 97301
(503) 378-5389 or (800) 452-0292
Fax: (503) 585-8059

Issue  67  ·  Spring  2017

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To simplify the process of downloading books from BARD, the National Library Service has released BARD Express, a computer app that allows you to search for, download, extract, and transfer books all in one place.  BARD Express is currently only for PCs, and there is no word yet about plans to make a Mac version.


There is lots of technical information about BARD Express available online, so instead of repeating all that here we’d like to share some of the benefits of using BARD Express we’ve found while testing it out.  There are a lot of good things to say about BARD Express, but here are some of our favorites:



-      It has a much more powerful search tool for finding books.  You can be more specific about what you’re searching for, and there are filtering options to help you narrow down your results.


-      It has much better information about series, making it easier and quicker to find all the books in a series (in order!).


-      You can go directly from downloading a book to loading it onto a flash drive with just a few clicks.  BARD Express takes care of the extraction process for you, so there is no need to find where your books downloaded to or figure out how to unzip them.


-      You can use BARD Express to add books to your wish list, then download them using the BARD Mobile app on your mobile device.


 To download BARD Express, log into BARD and scroll down the main page until you find a link that says Download BARD Express.  Follow the instructions on the next page and you’re good to go.  Happy downloading!




Our donation web page has recently received a complete overhaul in order to make it more modern, more accessible, and to provide donors with more options.  There used to be just two options to choose from whenever you made a donation (current or future needs), which left donors without any way of sharing why they were donating.  Now when you make a donation there are several additional options so it is much easier to say why you are donating.  These new options mean you can:


 -      Make a donation on someone else’s behalf.


-      Say thank you for a calendar.


-      Order additional calendars (when available).


-      Indicate a memorial donation and say where to send an acknowledgement.


You can go to today and make a donation to help support our library.  Your donations make it possible for us to give Oregon users a library experience above and beyond what the National Library Service provides, including descriptive DVDs, recording local-interest books by Oregon authors, and NFB-Newsline.  As always, all donations made to Talking Books are tax deductible.




We serve over 5,000 users all across the state of Oregon with just 7 staff members.  As such, we would not be able to function without a core of volunteers who help with everything from book inspection to mailings to book duplication and labeling.  Many of our volunteers are civic-conscious individuals, but there is one group of volunteers we have had a relationship with for 6 years now that we want to highlight.


So for this Partner Spotlight we would like to thank the Delta Gamma women’s fraternity at Willamette University.  These young ladies have volunteered over 1,700 hours moving and inventorying books, folding letters, making phone calls, and a variety of other projects.  They have also helped raise funds the past two years for our Summer Reading Program.  Their efforts have a huge positive impact on Talking Books, and they do it all with a high quality of character.


If you would like to volunteer with Talking Books like the Delta Gamma women you can contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 503-378-5014.  Even if you don’t live in our area you can still be a partner of Talking Books by telling people you know about our library.  You can call and ask for an application, or give them our phone number: 800-452-0292.  We need your help, and you really can make a difference.




On August 21, the continental United States will witness a total solar eclipse.  The path of totality for this eclipse will pass right across the northern part of Oregon, including Newport, Corvallis, Albany, Salem, Madras, John Day, and Ontario.  The total eclipse will be visible for approximately 2 minutes.


There has not been a total solar eclipse in Oregon since 1979, and in preparation of this exciting event NASA has developed and distributed a special tactile guide called Getting a Feel for Eclipses (BRX 543).  This tactile guide includes raised pictures with Braille labels of how an eclipse works and the full path this eclipse will take from Oregon to South Carolina.  There is even a QR code on the cover that links directly to additional accessible information about the guide in both English and Spanish.


If you are interested in borrowing one of these guides please contact us at 800-452-0292 or  You can also visit several websites for more information, including and  We have three copies of Getting a Feel for Eclipses, and they are available for 2 week loans with no renewals.




If you ever get stuck listening to the New User Guide on the player, the quickest way to get out of it so you can get back to listening to a book is to press and hold down the green Play/Stop button until the player says, “Closing the User Guide.”  From there you should be good to go.


Please do not write on, tear, or keep the annotation cards that are found under the mailing card of a book.  We have no way of replacing these cards.  If you get a book without an annotation card it’s OK; the book reads the annotation to you at the beginning.


Avoid using tape to keep book containers closed.  Tape can damage the labels on the container and leaves a residue.  The two plastic snaps should suffice to keep the container shut during mailing, or you can use a rubber band if the snaps have broken off.




 Talking Books will be closed on the following holidays:


  ·       April 21, All State Library In-Service Day


·       May 29, Memorial Day,


·       July 4, Independence Day


Remember that holidays create mail delays for both incoming and outgoing books.  Be sure to get any requests in several days ahead of these dates to improve the chance of receiving those books before holidays.





This newsletter is available in large print, audio, Braille, or on our website at Contact Talking Books if you would like to change the format you currently receive.


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