Saturday, September 07, 2002

article abstract on PDAs and libraries

Tom Peters, Director of the Center for Library Initiatives for the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, and project evaluator for our PDA grant has done an excellent job of abstracting some valuable articles in the literature on PDAs and libraries. He has agreed to allow me to share the abstracts here. Over the next few days I will post some of these. Thanks, Tom!


Moore, Margaret Eileen; Garrison, Julie A. 2002. Mobile Technology
Forums.
Medical Reference Services Quarterly 21 (2) (Summer): 75-79.
The article reviews the success of in-person PDA forums held at the
Duke
Medical Center Library and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Health Sciences Library. Moore and Garrison (2002) look at the role
user
forums (which, compared to user groups, tend to focus on broader
issues) can
play in gaining insight into how PDAs and other mobile technologies can
affect end-users and libraries alike. Forums both respond to the
existing
needs of users--expressed by the users themselves--and enable
librarians to
assess the emerging needs and interests of their core PDA-user
population.
The authors note that user forums often form around hot new
technologies to
discuss critical issues, cool applications, solutions to common
problems,
and general social networking. Moore and Garrison (2002) note that
benefits
to the library include: learning more about user needs and preferences
regarding PDA-related information resources, services, and systems;
forming
and strengthening collaborative relationships with key individuals and
units
within the larger organization; highlighting existing and forthcoming
library resources and services related to PDAs; and articulating the
library's role in general in the PDA movement. Respondents to one
post-forum questionnaire indicated that they prefer sessions that are
focused, short, and informal. A vendor fair was being planned for
spring
2002. The authors conclude that these forums have helped position the
two
libraries as leaders in the PDA area.

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