By Joanna Carter
— If you were out and about during the holiday season you probably saw a few people cheerfully gazing into the glow of their smart phones or tablets. They were busy and on the go, checking work e-mail, texting friends, listening to music, or searching for the closest Thai restaurant.
In the fast-paced world we all live in, we have become accustomed to relying on our digital devices for more than just communication and information; they’ve become a way to escape.
Libraries, long known as information and entertainment hubs, are catching on to how people are using their gadgets and offering customers free downloadable eBooks and audiobooks.
Many of the libraries in Hendricks County are part of OverDrive which allows users to download eBooks and audiobooks to their computers and transfer content to an iPod, eReader, MP3 player, or other portable device. You can find fiction and non-fiction authors like Stephenie Meyer, Dean Koontz, Erik Larson, and James Patterson and many, many more.
So, how do you download an audiobook or eBook? According to the Plainfield-Guilford Township Library’s Webmaster Laura Brack, “You need to decide whether you’re checking out an eBook (for a Barnes & Noble Nook, Pandigital Novel, Literati Reader, etc.) or an audiobook (iPod, Creative Zen, some Droids, etc.).
“To download the eBook or audiobook on OverDrive, you’ll need a personal computer and your device. Log onto the eIndiana Digital Consortium via the library’s webpage, then find the eBook or audiobook you’d like to check out. Make sure it’s compatible with your device, and then click the ‘checkout’ link.
“Once the item is checked out, you’ll need to download the digital software to transfer your files from the computer to your device (Adobe Digital Editions for eBooks, OverDrive Media Console for audiobooks). Then you’ll need to download the book to your computer. Once you’ve downloaded the book, you can open the digital software and transfer the book to your device. The last step? Enjoy reading or listening, using your device!”
So next time you find yourself looking for a book, why not try downloading it? It’s easy, quick, and absolutely free. You can’t beat that!
— Joanna Carter is community central manager at the Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library.