Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Online Libraries?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Kerrville, TX - Heart of the Fabulous Texas Hill Country
    Posts
    930

    Default Online Libraries?

    Hey ya'll. (I live in Texas now!) Sorry to have been so absent of late. Just been busy with life, but still playing uke every day.

    Anyway, I've been trying to locate an online library for general research use. And, I've run into some interesting and frustrating stumbling blocks.

    First, my little public library just doesn't have online services to speak of. And, I want access from home. So, I checked with my schools, college and grad school. They restrict online access for alumni to in house use of their library computers. I could use the databases if I was there in California, but not from my home in Texas. I can't find a state university or college (including in Texas) that will allow remote access to any but currently enrolled students.

    I'm certainly willing to pay any reasonable fee for general library remote access. But, I've searched all day online, and can't find one. This all started when I wanted to look up a word in the Oxford English Dictionary. That's the 20 volume set. Oxford will sell me access to just that one publication for $30 a month, or $300 a year. That's crazy! The set of books only costs $1,100.

    Most libraries have access to the OED online. I'm sure their subscription cost is minimal. There must be at least one online library that will allow me to join and includes online access to OED and other usual research databases. But I'll be darned if I can find it. Anyone have a suggestion?
    "The sole cause of all human misery is the inability of people
    to sit quietly in their rooms." - Blaise Pascal, 1670

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    ▇▇▇▇▇▇▇
    Posts
    5,633

    Default

    I dont have and answer for you, but I am interested if there is one.

    I use lots of free sources when looking stuff up, depending upon the knowledge domain, and while not the end-all-be-all, I find Wikipedia to be a good starting point, and all the major dictionary publishers like Websters, and American Heritage, and also Wiktionary are online, and there is Thesaurus.com, and Urban Dictionary (for slang words or colloquialisms that have not made it into the more formal dictionaries yet)...

    Medical info, I also look at Harvard Medical Review, WebMD, Drugs.com, Mayo Clinic, NIH (Nat'l Inst. of Health), WHO and a few others...

    Historical info, I look at Smithsonian, Archive.org, Nat Geo and a few others...

    and anything beyond that I try to find the major magazine or print publications, that also have a web site, as well as forum discussions via google-fu, and so far, every niche has been filled that I can see, but overall, I think that the role of the public library as far as internet-facing access is more democratized via alternate, less 'official' or less 'absolutely authoritative' sources that are not based upon a single library's catalog...

    Maybe NYPL (NY Public Library) has an online access system?

    I have not set foot inside an actual brick & mortar public library in over 20 yrs, and the ones at school in college and before were only for students and alumni, as I recall and as you've already seen...

    However, I still spend hours if I can, browsing the aisles of Barnes and Noble, as well as other booksellers, despite Amazon, because I'd much rather have the dead-tree version than Amazon being able to remotely delete my content at will, and also snoop on my reading habits without any accountability at all for doing so, nor me be able to limit with whom they share that info...with something such as a Kindle.

    I have a Kindle and I use it, but with Wi-Fi turned off, always, and load e-books via USB cable that I obtain from other sources and then convert to Kindle format with a free program called Calibre (works on Mac/Win/Linux)...

    sorry for the tanget, but I wish you luck in your quest and hope you can find the resource that you are seeking.
    Just the FAQs
    "Only those who will risk going too far, can possibly find out how far one can go."
    -T. S. Eliot

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    West Virginia
    Posts
    1,596

    Default

    I am faculty, so I have access through Ohiolink.edu and can use resources from over 100 state institutions. OhioLINK also partners with local libraries through SearchOhio.

    My local library card in West Virginia gives me access to WVReadsfor ebooks.

    Perhaps the state of Texas has something similar to Ohio and West Virginia.

    But, I do have some other ideas you can try:

    Start with http://libraryspot.com

    Try Oxford Dictionaries, but this may be the $300 one that you have already found https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/

    There are some amazing free things available through Google Scholar - many dissertations can be found there, for instance. You can also try searching with Google Advanced.

    Enroll at a local community college. See if you can audit a class and still get access to scholarly sources and databases.
    Last edited by actadh; 08-31-2017 at 04:42 PM.
    - Laura

    Sopranino - Vintage 1930's Camp Uke (Birch)
    Soprano - Koaloha Opio (Sapele), Martin OXK (HPL), Brueko No. 2 (Maple), Kala ASOV -S (Spruce/Ovangkol), Vintage 40's Silvertone (Mahogany), Vintage 50's Harmony (Birch), Zither Heaven (1 Black Walnut & 1 Cherry), First Act Discovery (Plastic)
    Concert - Luna (Spruce top)
    Tenor - Outdoor Ukulele (Composite Polycarbonate), Mainland (Mahogany)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Kerrville, TX - Heart of the Fabulous Texas Hill Country
    Posts
    930

    Default

    One more added annoyance. I see that the OED is available for remote access by registered users of our Library of Congress. But, to get a users ID and password, a person has to apply in person at their office in Washington, D.C. Now, what sense does that make? If I can use the library card from my home here in Texas, why should I be required to travel to Washington D.C. just to get the card? It's as if they are intentionally trying to discourage American citizens from using our national library.
    "The sole cause of all human misery is the inability of people
    to sit quietly in their rooms." - Blaise Pascal, 1670

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Kerrville, TX - Heart of the Fabulous Texas Hill Country
    Posts
    930

    Default

    Yeah, I used to have faculties, but not so much anymore.

    Still searching, but the material is getting kind of thin. I've used every combination of google search terms I can think of. You'd think there would be an online, subscription library out there which one could pay to join, that would offer ebooks and extensive reference materials. But so far, nada. All I've found are: (1) limited content free libraries; (2) dedicated purpose professional or institution only libraries; (3) current student only academic libraries, and; (4) single publication subscriptions. It seems the ordinary Joe who's willing to pay is just out of luck. And that seems very strange to me in this increasingly connected world.
    "The sole cause of all human misery is the inability of people
    to sit quietly in their rooms." - Blaise Pascal, 1670

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •