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RSS Feeds Added to Library Website

Added to the world of Internet jargon comes a new term—RSS.  But this is one library customers will like. 

RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication.”   It’s the newest way for library customers to find out the latest acquisitions in the Metropolitan Library System collection, as well as information about the system.

Traditionally, people have visited each web page in which they’re interested every day in order to see if anything new has been posted.  Sometimes there’s something new to read, and sometimes there isn’t.  It would be a lot easier and less time-consuming if the new material came to you instead of you having to go to it.  That’s what RSS is all about.  It lets the new information from the sites you want to read come to you.

“The feeds are written in XML,” said MLS Director of Information Technology Anne Fischer, “and they require a news reader to access.  There are several web-based readers out there and they’re easy to locate online and there’s nothing to download.  It’s just like signing up for free email.”

You set up an online “home” to which new data from your favorite sites comes to your computer.  To establish that home, you need to get a free reader.  Readers are available from Google, Yahoo, and several other places online.  There’s nothing to download. 

With your reader in place, you can subscribe to the Metropolitan Library System’s feed and start receiving, through daily updates, the information you’ve selected.

Do you read a lot of mysteries and science fiction and want to know what the library has that’s new?  Subscribe to the “Mystery” and “Science Fiction” feeds and every time the library system acquires a new title in those genres, you’ll find out immediately.  In fact, you can find out about new items in a variety of genres and formats, including fiction for adults, Spanish language, large print, DVDs, audio books, books for children and teens, nonfiction for adults, and music.

But book titles are not all you can discover.

“If you have Internet access,” Fischer added, “you can learn instantly about MLS

employment opportunities, ‘library news,’ and events and programs scheduled throughout the library system.”

            If you have the newest version of Internet Explorer or Firefox, you can also go directly through the MLS webpage. Here’s an example of what you can expect to get through the library’s RSS feed.  Say you like to watch movies at home but you hate having to pay to rent them.  On the library website’s Home Page you go to “Quick Links” and click on “RSS.”  Using the library’s RSS feed you check to see what new DVDs the library system has added to its collection recently.  You go to “DVDs” and click on “Feature Films,” and just like that a list of the titles added in the last 30 days, updated daily, appears.  You see a title that looks interesting and click on it. 

            You’re instantly taken to CyberMARS, the library’s online catalog, and you see the catalog entry for the movie you’ve chosen, including how long it is, when it was released, the MPAA rating, and lots more information.  If you decide you want to check it out, click on “reserve,” put in your library card number and the name of the library at which you want to pick up the disc, and that’s all there is to it.                                 

            Users of the Metropolitan Library System’s new RSS feed will soon be devoted to it.    There is no faster way to find out what the newest books, CDs and DVDs are in the library collection and put them on reserve for check out.

            To find out more about the library’s RSS feed, visit the MLS website at www.metrolibrary.org and click on the RSS link under Quick Links.

            There’s no easier way to find out what’s happening at your library.

The Metropolitan Library System of Oklahoma County includes 12 libraries and five extension libraries.  Libraries include Belle Isle, Capitol Hill, Ralph Ellison, Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library and Southern Oaks in Oklahoma City, as well as Bethany, Choctaw, Del City, Edmond, Midwest City, Village and Warr Acres.  Extensions are located in the communities of Harrah, Jones, Luther and Nicoma Park and include Wright Library in Oklahoma City.  You can also reach us at www.metrolibrary.org