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Library fair showcases the latest technology

The UConn Libraries' Technology Fair at the Homer Babbidge Library October 7 demonstrated some of UConn's latest electronic resources.

"This stuff changes so often, I lose track of what's new," said Murphy Sewall, a professor of marketing, who said he relies heavily on technology. "It's easier to come here to one of these technology fairs than to surf the Internet."

Hotze Wijnja, a doctoral student in plant science, agreed. "The Internet is changing so quickly." He said much of the new technology available through the UConn libraries is helpful for doing research. "There is a broad range of information, and easier access to the information available, through the Internet. I don't have to come here anymore; I can log on through my own computer."

The Technology Fair attracted several librarians from other campuses and institutions. "We want to see what's out there," said Kitty Tynan, head of reference at the University of Hartford's library. "The electronic course reserves look like something the students (at the University of Hartford) would like," she said, adding that she hopes to use what she learned at UConn as a potential model.

Increasing access to information was a concern expressed by several of those who attended. Spencer Clough, the associate librarian for public services at the Law School, said electronic journals are particularly helpful in providing access. Marion Levine, an associate director at the health center, said Beilstein CrossFire, a very old dictionary of organic compounds, used to be intimidating. "Many people used to be afraid to use it." The electronic version of Beilstein CrossFire is much more manageable, she said.

Daniel Smolin