Brad Williams uses the computer bank at Bud Werner Memorial Library on Monday afternoon. The library is offering three new online resources - including language programs - free of charge to library patrons.

Photo by John F. Russell

Brad Williams uses the computer bank at Bud Werner Memorial Library on Monday afternoon. The library is offering three new online resources - including language programs - free of charge to library patrons.

Library offers Web tools

Programs teach languages, allow genealogical searches

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On the 'Net

Library members can access Mango Languages and Digital Sanborn Maps by visiting the Bud Werner Memorial Library Web site, clicking on "Databases & Websites" and entering their library card number.

— Bud Werner Memorial Library has added free online tools for language enthusiasts and genealogy buffs.

Library members can access Mango Languages and Digital Sanborn Maps from anywhere, and Ancestry Library Edition is available at the library. The language program is drawing interest, and genealogy is a popular hobby, library staff members said.

"People are very excited about the Mango Languages," reference library assistant Jackie Kuusinen said. "That's the big one, particularly because it's accessible by an unlimited number of people at one time, and it incorporates the visual and the auditory and the practical elements."

Mango offers 12 courses, including Spanish, Greek, Russian and Japanese for English speakers. It also provides English courses for people who speak Spanish, Polish and Brazilian Portuguese.

Staff members chose Mango because it's tailored to libraries, Systems Librarian Alysa Selby said.

"People often ask us to buy the Rosetta Stone sets that you hear about on TV or read about in magazines, but they're very costly, and if you lose one part, the set is gone," Selby said.

Mango's components are completely online, and multiple people can use the site simultaneously.

"There's such a high demand for language learning materials at the library, and everybody wants an audio system," Selby said. "This helps us get to people more effectively. You don't have to wait in line."

People of different skill levels can use Mango. Since the library added the program nearly three weeks ago, 243 people have logged on, Selby said. One hundred and nineteen have been English speakers learning Spanish. But 24 Spanish speakers have signed on to learn English, and 26 English speakers have chosen French.

Users have spent an average of 14 minutes on the site, she said.

"It's actually seen a fair bit of use," Selby said.

Sanborn maps and the Ancestry Library are useful for people researching genealogy, she said. Sanborn allows users to look at maps from around the state.

They can see details of various properties, Selby said.

"It tells you how wide the streets are and how tall the buildings are," for example, she said. "It's really quite a bit of information."

Ancestry Library provides more. That service is available only at Bud Werner Memorial Library, which has a subscription. The database includes immigration, birth, marriage and death records, as well as U.S. Census figures, United Kingdom census figures, books, and some newspapers.

Ancestry Library's resources are massive, Selby said.

"You can be sucked into this for years," she said. "It's a wonderful tool."

- To reach Blythe Terrell, call 871-4234 or e-mail bterrell@steamboatpilot.com

Comments

Chad James 5 years, 6 months ago

War Pig is clearly checking in on his AIG stock....Miss Vick wants some NEW SHOES!

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