m-Libraries Conference 2009, Second International m-libraries Conference

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M-Library in an m-University: Changing Models in the Open University of Catalonia

Dora Perez, Pep Torn

Last modified: 2009-06-22

Abstract


The general perspective of M-technologies and M-Services at the Spanish universities is not still in a very high level when we are ending the first decade of the 21st century. Some Universities and some of their libraries are starting to try out with M-technologies, but are still far from a model of massive exploitation, less than in some other countries. A deep study is needed to know the main reasons, study that we will not do in this paper.  This general perspective does not mean that there are no significant initiatives which start to trust in M-technologies from Universities and their libraries.  Models based in M-technologies make more sense than ever in open universities and in open libraries. That’s the reason why the UOC’s Library began in late 90s its first experiences in the M-Technologies and M-Libraries developments.

 

In 1999 the appropriate technology offered the opportunity to carry out the first pilot test with SMS, and then applying the WAP technology. At those moments we managed to link-up mobile phones to the OPAC through a WAP system that allowed searching the catalogue by categories and finding the final location of a document, offering also the address of the library in which the user could loan it.  Since then, UOC (and its library) directs its efforts towards adapting the offer of services to all sorts of M-devices used by end users. Left the WAP technology, nowadays the library is experimenting with some new devices like e-books, and some new services to get more feedback through the OPAC and metalibrary search products.

 

We propose the case of Open University of Catalonia, in two levels: M-services applied in the library and M-technologies applied in some other university services and resources.


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