University Libraries

Mobile Development Project Summary

Editors Note: This Project Summary information is from the 2004-2005 LSTA Technology Grant Project funded by the Indiana State Library.

Andy West
Mobile Computing Developer
Library Data and Discovery Solutions

(From the grant project proposal to the Indiana State Library.)

The Library Information Technology Servcies Group at Ball State University Libraries is interested in researching and developing a mobile computing compatible interface to library services and resources.

Many modern academic library resources are in electronic format, available on the Internet, and are not bound by place. Campus community members have heavily invested in mobile computing devices: Notebook computers, Palm/Pocket PC devices, and Internet-enabled multi-purpose personal communication devices like cellular phones that support voice and data services.

The focus of this project is to bring library resources and services to users of these personal communication devices.

The challenge is to retool complex, powerful, feature-rich interfaces for effective use on a powerful personal communication device with a very small screen and potential bandwidth limitations. Several projects with an education or library angle have been described in articles and case studies, and relate to programs that focus on a Palm or PocketPC based device.

The project focus for Ball State University Libraries is on personal communication devices such as PDA/Phone units. This project looks beyond Wi-Fi, which already is a basis for powerful new learning environments. Wi-Fi is still place-bound by Wi-Fi hot spots. Internet-enabled PDA/Phone devices provide a truly mobile, anywhere-access model for learning and research.

The project group is seeking funding from the State Library through the LSTA Innovative Technology Mini-Grant program to investigate and develop this idea.

Maintained by Andy West for University Libraries. Updated on Tuesday, July 05, 2005.