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What’s new?


A new eBook platform is coming!

posted: , by Emily Levine
tags: About the Library | Online Services | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors | News

On Wednesday, March 1, 2017, the Maine InfoNet Download Library will move to a brand new eBook and eAudiobook platform called cloudLibrary. This will replace the Overdrive platform.

We’re positive PPL patrons will enjoy the cloudLibrary platform. Its easy-to-use interface makes it simple to download titles, save reads for later, and even sync activity across multiple devices.

This transition will offer Maine readers a bigger selection of eBooks and eAudiobooks, including most of the digital titles already in our collection. As an additional benefit, the checkout period has been extended from 2 weeks to 3 weeks!

There is no cost to library users. All you need to get started is an active library card.

The cloudLibrary app is compatible with the following devices: iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android Phones, Android Tablets, NOOK Tablets, NOOK eReaders, Kobo eReaders and Kindle Fires.

Amazon has declined to make the cloudLibrary app available through its proprietary app store. Please check these detailed instructions for using the Kindle Fire and the Kindle HD.

Getting started

The Maine State Library’s FAQ is very helpful resource, but here are answers to questions you may have:

  • Our current system, managed by Overdrive, will be turned off on Tuesday, February 28, 2017. CloudLibrary will be launched the very next day, Wednesday, March 1, 2017.
  • With this transition to cloudLibrary, the Download Library will continue to offer readers nearly all the current collection of over 10,000 digital titles, plus new titles and additional copies of popular titles.
  • Significant cost savings due to the change in platforms will allow us to purchase more content, reducing the wait times for popular titles.
  • Checkouts that exist in Overdrive on February 28 will not transfer to the new system. What exactly happens to an active checkout at the time of switchover will depend on a patron’s specific device and how it checks back (or doesn’t) to see if the item’s license is still valid in cloudLibrary.
  • Holds will not transfer to the new system. You should place a new hold in the cloudLibrary by downloading the app and logging in on March 1.
  • Patron requests to purchase a specific title will not transfer to the new system. You may want to place your new request in cloudLibrary on March 1.
  • Users of Kindle devices should be advised that the Kindle Fire (2nd generation or newer) works with the cloudLibrary, but e-ink Kindles do not.

The cloudLibrary support site has a downloadable cloudLibrary User Guide, provides how-to videos, and is a useful spot for other help topics. Of course, PPL’s staff is ready to help with any questions once we make the change. We are excited about the new platform and the expanded options it will provide for our patrons.

 


Resources for Writers at PPL

posted: , by Hazel Koziol
tags: Library Collections | Online Services | Programs & Events | Adults | Teens | Seniors | Art & Culture | Careers & Jobs
library-resources-for-indie-authors

National Novel Writing Month, or the snappily abbreviated NaNoWriMo, is well under way all over the world. For seventeen years, November’s thirty days have been embraced by budding novelists eager for a challenge: write 50,000 words, or an average of 1,666 words every day of the month. More than 400,000 participants have created free profiles on the official NaNoWriMo website, a hub for literary wisdom and inspiration, networking, and digital badge incentives. Maybe you are already participating, or maybe you’ll mark next year’s calendar, but either way, check out what PPL is doing to encourage and empower independent authors in our community.

SELF-e is a discovery platform designed to expose self-published ebooks to more readers through the public library. Authors submit their ebooks through a simple online form and decide if they’d like their book to go to libraries in their state with books from other local indie authors and/or to Library Journal to be evaluated for possible inclusion in a curated, national product.

PPL hosts a monthly Writers’ Meet-Up on second Thursday evenings. This is an opportunity to get feedback on short excerpts of your work and to be inspired by fellow writers. Or, if you’re feeling a little stuck and have nothing to share just yet, maybe you’d like to join the monthly journaling group at PPL. This is a supportive environment for creative, reflective writing, with the options to follow prompts and to share work.

Finally, of course, we have books! You might find inspiration anywhere—from poetry to picture books to local history—but here is a list of titles that specifically address the art of writing. Happy NaNoWriMo and here’s to the year-round pursuit of the written word!


American Archives Month – Historical Research of Maine Businesses & Industries

posted: , by Cindy Dykes
tags: About the Library | Library Collections | Online Services | Adults | Teens | Seniors | Business | Portland History

The Portland Room and Archives has several resources that are useful when researching the history of a given business or industry. The Maine Register is a business directory covering the State of Maine. It is organized by county and then towns within the county. Included is a classified business index and a manufacturers’ section, which includes the names and locations of businesses as well as the names of owners or principal officers, purchasing agents and sales offices. There are also a lot of other fun facts included as well, for example, how the counties voted for governor and presidential candidates in election years, and current postage rates.

The Annual Report of the Bureau of Industrial and Labor Statistics for the State of Maine, covering 1887-1910, often contain extensive reports on industries in Maine in a given year. The 1890 edition is dedicated to agriculture and the strikes among the granite workers that year.

Another great print resource is Edward H. Elwell’s 1875 edition “The Successful Business Houses of Portland.” Organized by type of business and then business names, he gives a history of the business and goods they sell or manufacture.

guptill-store

Charles F. Guptill & Co. ca. 1910
from the Portland Room Photo Archives


Sometimes information about businesses can be gleaned from viewing the PPL’s Picture and Photo Collections.

The newspapers can be sources of information for this type of research. There are two indexes that can be used. The Jordan Index covers sixteen newspapers, primarily published in Portland, between 1785-1835. The Maine News Index covers the Press Herald newspapers between 1945-1992. After 1992, the newspapers can be found in the Maine Newsstand database.

Finally, check out PPL’s Digital Commons. Much of what you find here are abstracts of articles the Portland Room has in print. We have also digitized the 1882 Goodwin Atlas and the 1914 Richards Atlas, that show streets, addresses, footprints of buildings and what the buildings are made of, as well as a print copy of 1957 Sanborn fire insurance map.

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