A few weeks ago, Jenny Levine at the Shifted Librarian pointed to a new service from Google that allows you to search via text message on your phone. She linked to it again yesterday, and I finally tried it out. Very, very cool. Text in “08822 pizza” and in a couple seconds I get a call listing the two pizza places downtown.
Text in “define egalitarian” and the definition comes to me. Oy…the possibilities. As Jenny says:
This is huge. It’s one of my new themes I’ve been highlighting over the past few months in my presentations. Libraries are ignoring instant messaging at our peril, and our vendors don’t understand the power of IM and SMS as interfaces to services. That’s why when I visited with vendors on the ILA exhibit floor last week, my handout for them included screenshots of Leland Johnson’s AIM catalog search.
Here’s the important quote that really brings home why this is so important (bolded for extra emphasis): “Google’s SMS service is interesting for a couple of reasons. Texting is the world’s most popular computer user interface. It’s how most of the world communicates, too.”
So is your library ready to communicate with your users this way?
How long until I get to be a digital native???
Oh and by the way…CNet reports “In a sign texting has gone mass market, in June 2004, there were 2.8 billion messages sent from U.S. cell phones, compared with the 2.8 million sent in June 2003.” Sheesh…