Libraries expand digital collection

Searching for a new book to read? The University of Miami’s libraries recently added 200 million e-books to their digital collection.

The Virtual Library program has been an ongoing, collaborative effort between the libraries and the schools and colleges  that is dedicated to upgrading and facilitating access to virtual information.

“It is fantastic and not to mention convenient for everyone to have instant and unlimited access to a library book,” junior Janaki Kannan said.

William Walker, the dean of the university library system, said the virtual library has been growing over the past five years.

“Each year, we have continued to make more e-content available via increasingly powerful search systems,” he said.

Mitsunori Ogihara, associate dean for Digital Library Innovation, is leading the virtual library program.

He wants to develop virtual bookshelves or stacks where students can still get the experience of traditional library, only with more intricate search browsing to help them find books.

Ogihara’s main priority is to respond student and faculty needs.

“If that kind of thing is made possible, the using of the library could be more interesting, more fun and more effective,” he said.

The libraries recently established an partnership with the College of Arts and Sciences in order to improve their own digital capabilities.

“Our partnership with the College of Arts and Sciences will help us to augment our efforts in digital scholarship, or the collaborative creation of new digital resources with faculty and students,” said Kyle Rimkus, head of the department of digital scholarship and programs.

Many library resources are already on the web, including journals, thematic exihibtions and student thesises.

Rimkus hopes to eventually provide immediate, around-the-clock access to their resources on the technological device of choice.

“It would be so relieving to have help,” said junior Laken Garcia, a motion pictures major. “I have spent too much time digging through the stacks of books in the Richter Library unsuccessfully.”