BY TOM BUSSELBERG
FARMINGTON — Davis County residents are becoming well acquainted with the digital age, and some may think that public libraries are going the way of pagers, phone books and pay phones.
They would be wrong.
Davis County Library’s new home page, co.davis.ut.us/library, is up and running, and it’s full of digital offerings that complement the library system’s print collection.
It’s the same address as before, but now boasts a more contemporary look. There are rotating banners displaying web sites, blog postings, social networking including Facebook and Twitter, and much more, said Jerry Meyer. He is assistant county library director.
“We have blog postings that promote the collection, show such things as the various versions of Sherlock Holmes,” he said. “You can click on a photo can see listings,.”
If you’re a fan of the British Downtown Abbey series, you can click to learn what other TV programs are available depicting a similar story line or time period.
There is also an app that gives browsers ideas of what to search for on the site, Meyer said.
Or visitors can get an idea of what a particular book is about by visiting the Best Staff Picks option.
Movies on DVD and eBooks are also prominently featured, including easy ways to download some titles on iPhones and Android and start reading immediately, he said.
The eBook collection has been expanded in conjunction with the state library, meaning there are multiple copies available of titles such as John Grisham’s “The Litigator.”
Most library users now do research at the library from an off-site location, and there are 14 categories geared toward that. Some of the pages are free and don’t require having a library card for access, Meyer said.
Research pages cover a broad spectrum, from genealogy to business magazines or investing.
They are “authoritative websites,” Meyer said, meaning they’ve been selected as having quality, researched data.
The web site offers pages providing job listings and related information about preparing a resume. Practice tests for the GRE (Graduate Record Examination and the graduate management admissions test) can be taken, test scores retrieved and more.
Parents can easily research movie choices for their kids, narrowing a search to only those with a G rating, for example, he said.
The number of fines and amount the library collects from overdue books has dropped. Meyer said that’s because patrons can now check to see what items they have checked out, see their due date, and can renew many items online.
He briefly talked about how different the library system is now compared to when starting as a new employee in 1977.
“I still walk in and there are the books on the shelves,” Meyer said. “But now there’s the Internet. People still come to the library for books but they’re not so much there to get information. You can look that up on your iPhone.”
Library Director Chris Sanford is thrilled at the new digital possibilities, he said:
“The (county) Information Systems is nothing short of phenomenal.”