Thursday, March 28, 2013

EBooks from the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries

EBooks from the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries

I may be late coming to this party but I just discovered last week that there is now one more reason to love the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Libraries’ website – eBooks! I’ve avoided downloading eBooks until now, but I was tempted by the idea of having the Massachusetts Guide to Evidence on my iPhone. Why? Am I ever in court? No, but the idea was irresistibly appealing (which is probably why I’m a law librarian).

So in the interests of reportage, I tried downloading from the website onto my iPhone to test how easy it was for someone of my tech skill level to do it. I had no problem finding and downloading one of the free eBook readers mentioned in Step One of the instructions. I chose Overdrive to add to my iPhone.

I hit a bump, completely ascribable to the aforesaid skill level, when I got to Step Two. I report this solely for comic effect:  I had a preliminary disconnect between how to get the book from the Law Libraries’ online catalog accessed from my desktop to my iPhone. It took a couple of minutes for me to realize that this would all make much more sense if I accessed the catalog from my iPhone. When done this way, the download is super fast.

I was eager to see what the Massachusetts Guide to Evidence looked like on the iPhone and to explore navigation. The book is wonderfully easy to read. Navigational tools sprawl across the top of the page. The most important tool for me was the table of contents feature which zips you to the relevant section of evidence. You can change the font, font size, search, and bookmark on the iPhone.

The Trial Court Libraries will update the eBooks. From the website:  “Whenever rules or other publications are amended, we'll issue a new edition of the book. If you come back to this page periodically, you can check the date next to the title to see if it is newer than what you have. Alternatively, you can sign up for our updates mailing list by emailing and we'll send you an email whenever a new version is put out.”
How cool is that?

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