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August 27, 2012

Library’s Media Center offers NOOK rentals

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Written by: Lauren Yap

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Photo Editor, Paige Nelson

Recent innovation and technology have fostered bookworms into the digital age. The introduction of e- book readers cultivated a reading revolution spreading all the way to San Diego State. Love Library now carries a selection of more than 20 NOOKs from Barnes & Noble, which are available for students to borrow. The difference between an online book and e-book is distinct.

The former is viewed on a computer web browser, while the latter is downloaded directly to an e-reader. In addition to portable practicality, readers favor the e-link used on the tablets, which make it easier to read in sunlight and easier on the eyes. The NOOKs are found in the Love Library Media Center, located on the lower level below the dome near the laptop lounge. Any student, staff or faculty member can check out either the NOOK 1st Edition or Simple Touch for as long as 30 days.

The NOOK Simple Touch boasts features such as a long- lasting battery, portability and Wi-Fi. However, the library hosts the most basic NOOK model, which is strictly for reading. Unlike fancy competitors such as the iPad, the Simple Touch display is black and white and lacks video, gaming and music capability. For that reason, these tablets may not become textbook replacements because they lack color and cannot bemarked up.

However, the NOOK proves quite useful for research projects. For example, students required to use several scholarly sources no longer need to check out bulky publications and can simply load books on the NOOK.

This e-reader also remains an ideal option for students without laptops who need access to online books. Additionally, hard-core literature lovers can check out several publications at once and always have them at their fingertips.

There are several ways to add reading material to the NOOK.

First, students can take advantage of the millions of free books available online for free. Many classic novels, short stories and scholarly journals fall into this category. The SDSU library website has an extensive database with links to find free online books, e-book collections and e-bookstores. Google Books is also a great place to start searching.

Digital technologies librarian Keven Jeffery explains why Love Library chose to host the NOOK instead of other similar e- readers, such as the Amazon Kindle. “The reason we chose the NOOK was mainly because of the open e-book, EPUB standard format, meaning someone with a NOOK can get e- books from the Barnes & Noble, Google or Sony stores because the NOOK is more flexible in terms of content,” Jeffery said. Students can download either EPUB or PDF files on their computer and transfer that content to the NOOK via USB for on- the-go convenience.

Fiction fans that want content not offered at Love Library, which primarily hosts academic reading, can check out e-books from any other public library for free. Most public libraries use a system called Overdrive to loan e-books. Students must download a free AdobeDigital Editions software on their computer in order to transfer their e-book rentals to the NOOK.

Finally, students who purchase e-books from an online retailer such as Barnes & Noble can access content once they’ve registered the device. After registration, students can log into their accounts and transfer their purchases to the NOOK. Think back to the days when it was courteous to rewind a VHS rental from Blockbuster for the next person. The same concept goes for the NOOK, so be sure to unregister the device before returning it.

Readers who prefer to stick to old-school print may be hesitant to embrace this modern medium. Fortunately, the SDSU library and information website has plenty of resources and help for NOOK novices. The tipssection offers step-by-step downloading instructions for all content options. The information age remains in full swing and SDSU is keeping up.

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About the Author

Lauren Yap



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