Tech on the Go
Libraries have long been known for their technology, from the trusty printing press throughout the ages to record player stations in the ‘70s, Oregon Trail in the ‘80s, public internet access and computers in the ‘90s and free Wi-Fi in the 2000s. To take advantage of those services and gadgets, you had to be in the Library, but HPL is increasingly offering portable technology you can check out and take on the go with your HPL card. According to Adult Services Manager, Cynthia Dieden, “More and more, libraries want to offer community members the technology they want and need for productive and enjoyable experiences beyond the library walls. We hope that offering useful and relevant technology to-go will give Hinsdale residents options to use and learn about technology.”
With our new Wi-Fi hotspots, you can take Internet access with you anywhere in the contiguous United States. These hotspots offer unlimited data on the Sprint network and up to ten devices may be connected at once. That means tablet time in the backseat and streaming or work in the front can use the connection at the same time. Our hotspots have gone on cross-country road trips, to conferences with spotty cell and Wi-Fi service and filled the gap in new homes waiting to start Internet service.
We also recently updated our eReader collection. Four new Kindle Oasis were added through a generous gift in memory of Hinsdale resident, Mary Healy Bartecki. These Kindles are made for travel – they are thin, but sturdy with a seven-inch screen. Plus, they are waterproof for beachside and poolside peace of mind. With new and popular titles already loaded, they are an easy way to take a stack of bestsellers with you (without the actual stack) or to read your next book group choice.
For movie enthusiasts, we added a Roku streaming stick with the Movies Anywhere app installed. Movies Anywhere allows us to give you access to digital copies of films we’ve purchased for the Library. More than fifty movies for different tastes and ages are readily available for viewing without any streaming service accounts necessary. Additional Rokus will be coming soon. We also now offer a projector to checkout for big picture viewings or other presentations. The Roku plus the projector can equal a fun backyard movie night.
Sometimes the hardest technology to find are the gadgets that used to be part of daily life but have broken or malfunctioned over time. The Library helps fill that gap too. The Youth and Young Adult Services Department now offers portable CD and DVD players. You can listen to that old Pearl Jam CD or re-watch an old favorite that hasn’t made its way to Netflix yet. And, if you really want to get ‘90s retro, check out the classic Nintendo system that made Mario famous. We offer an easy-to-connect, compact version of the original NES, complete with thirty games like Zelda, Donkey Kong and Super Mario Brothers.
If you prefer to use your own equipment, but still want to take advantage of what HPL has to offer, we provide books, audiobooks, movies, magazines and music for download and streaming. From critically acclaimed films and shows for kids on Kanopy to magazines like Fine Cooking and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance on Flipster, visit the Downloadables page on the Library’s website at www.hinsdalelibrary.info to learn more about what each service has to offer.
With new portable technology and our always available digital collections, you may not need to visit the Library as often, but we hope you will. And, we are always available to answer questions about our technology and services.