Desert goes digital

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The desert goes digital Thurs, March 1 as an 18-wheeler rolls into the south parking lot of the Tempe Public Library from 10am-4pm. It’s part of a national tour for the Digital Bookmobile that’s 74 feet long and equipped with all sorts of technology for helping readers cross the digital divide.

The Digital Bookmobile is “a high-tech update of the traditional bookmobile that has served communities for decades.” Folks who venture inside will discover  broadband Internet-connected PCs, high definition monitors, premium sound systems and a variety of portable media players.

Interactive learning stations inside the Digital Bookmobile give visitors an opportunity to search the library’s digital media collection and use supported mobile devices — plus sample eBooks, audiobooks, music and video.

The Tempe Public Library notes that patrons can take advantage of the download service 24/7 when they visit the library’s website. From there, they can browse the growing collection of bestselling, new release and classic titles — and check out a digital title (with a valid library card).

I discovered during a recent visit to the Tempe Public Library that library cards are on their way to becoming miniature works of art. Patrons of the Tempe Public Library have several designs to choose from, making it just a little more hip to be a card-carrying member of a literate citizenry.

Once downloaded, digital titles can be enjoyed on a computer or transferred to supported mobile devices. Many audio titles can also be burned to audio CD. Titles automatically expire and get returned to the digital collection at the end of the loan period. Hence no fees for late or damaged items.

The Digital Bookmobile is operated by OverDrive, Inc. Visit to explore and download digital offerings, or to learn more about the library’s many programs for children, teens and grown-ups.

— Lynn

Note: Tempe Public Library shares a courtyard with the Tempe History Museum and the Edna Vihel Center for the Arts, so make time to explore these too. Click here to learn more about public art in Tempe, and here to learn about art exhibited at Tempe Public Library.

Coming up: Women unite to offer arts scholarships, Art meets cell phone, Dancers on the fringe, Family-friendly festival fare

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