Digital Libraries are the new face of the traditional walk-in library. They are an online database of various digital objects like images, texts, video, audio, etc. Although digital libraries’ service has been prevalent since the last few years, the recent pandemic has made the users more aware of this service. During the lockdown, when people were locked up in their houses, they started exploring the digital platforms, and thus the popularity of Digital Libraries rose amongst other digital services, thanks to the amazing features of a digital library.
Many digital libraries like the National Digital Library of India reached out to students with 3.5 Crore content to enable them to study from their homes.
Digital Libraries certainly have a much broader scope; there are no physical restrictions and have low maintenance costs compared to the old school libraries. We shall delve into a little detail and explore the features of a digital library features and characteristics and what makes them different from traditional libraries.
Features of a digital library
No Physical Restrictions:
With the traditional libraries, one has to physically make arrangements and go to a library to access books or other documents. There are no such physical restrictions in the case of digital libraries. One can access it from anywhere, even from the comfort of their homes! All that is required is a good Internet connection. That’s it!
One main problem in traditional libraries is the restriction in using the same resource by multiple people simultaneously. It is not a problem in the case of digital libraries. Several individuals and institutions can access the same resource at the same time. Mintbook is one such digital library where resources are available to universities, training centers, banking, and even schools. It has a variety of content that matches everybody’s choice.
DLs are more comfortable to use as compared to physical libraries. All you have to do is search for the title or the author, and you’ll get your book in no time. You don’t have to go from shelf to shelf looking for a book. Moreover, their digital libraries are customizable. Such DLs can be easily customized with your business requirements by getting integrated with your setup.
Conservation and Preservation:
Physical books get damaged after being used and reused again. Their pages get torn, and print disappears with time. Thus, DLs have an advantageous position in this area. No matter how many times a resource is being accessed, it will not affect its condition. It remains preserved in its original form for a more extended period. However, it is still debatable whether DLs are the ultimate preservation solution for physical books.
No Limitation of Space:
The storage capacity of the traditional libraries is restricted due to the limited amount of physical space. On the other hand, there is no such limitation in the case of DLs. DLs can store thousands of resources without facing any difficulties because media storage is very affordable. Mintbook Digital Library has about 10 lakh content stored in more than ten regional languages!
Their resources are in the form of videos, e-books, magazines, quizzes, simulation labs, media clippings, etc. They also have annotation features such as notes, highlighter, dictionary, etc. In a nutshell, it has everything you can wish from a library during this pandemic.
Scope of Improvement:
Digital Libraries have improved and advanced due to technological changes. In the future, too, we’ll see the improved version of these DLs. For instance, the quality of pictures might improve, removal of visible flaws like discoloration and stains.
More Than a Library:
Another exciting feature of digital libraries is that it’s not just a library. Its spectrum is broader than the old school libraries. For instance, digital libraries engage with their clients via formal as well as informal mode.
The one thing we are all lazy at doing is returning the book to the library. Admit it that we always return the book late, and then what? We pay the late fee. In some libraries, the time you can issue a book is as low as a week. Who can finish a book in a week? Nobody! (unless you’re an avid reader).
Digital libraries also solve this problem. All you need is to pay a minimum subscription price, and then you’ll have access to all of their material until the subscription expires. There is no headache of returning the book on time!
No Boundaries of Knowledge:
Digital Libraries reduce the regional and national boundaries of knowledge. For instance, if someone from one country wants to access books from another country. In that case, he or she can easily access the book via a digital library. A walk-in library can’t include every book in the world, but that’s not the case with Digital Libraries. You can access any text from any corner of the world!
No Language Bar:
Apart from having a wide variety of texts and books, a digital library also has texts in many languages. Language isn’t a hindrance to DLs.
360-Degree Virtual Learning Experience:
Some technologically advanced Digital Libraries have a 360-degree Virtual Learning experience.
It allows customers to land up in a versatile training program. Apart from academic resources, digital libraries also have vocational content. It indeed does have something for everyone!
Digital Libraries are a blessing to students, schools, universities, and everyone who loves learning. They are proving helpful, especially today when the coronavirus has badly hit us. With all physical sources of knowledge shut down, there is one thing that has not impeded expertise, and that’s Digital Libraries. If you are interested in seeking knowledge, you should not restrict yourself to physical books or resources. Here are 10 advantages of digital libraries that you should know about.
Digital Libraries are the best way to upgrade yourself, especially during this time. It has every feature that you can ask for. It has thousands of resources; it’s economical, easy to use, and easily accessible. Digital libraries are the need of the hour, and switching to them is a decision that you will not regret!