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Ask Options Expanded

Great River Regional Library (GRRL) has added two new resources, the Virtual Reference Shelf (VRS) and Internet Public Library 2 (IPL2) to the Ask a Librarian page on its website. It already included email, instant messaging, phone, in-person, and AskMN options for people seeking information at the library.

Both the VRS and IPL2 give a questioner some independence and quality assurance. When library users visit the GRRL website with a question they may choose links for email, instant messaging, phone, in-person or AskMN to connect with a librarian. But they can also find answers without human intervention. Both the VRS and IPL2 provide, well organized dependable resources.

The VRS is compiled by the finest and largest library in the United States: the Library of Congress. The Library of Congress already offers one of the world's great library catalogs online, and it is digitizing its historical resources through its American Memory page. Through the VRS it is making a lot of well-known web-based resources available in a very convenient format.

IPL2 comes out of the Internet Public Library initiative that dates back to the early days of the World Wide Web. It was created as a resource for anyone seeking information, and because it was created by the library community, it also offered credibility, accuracy and completeness. It is still maintained by library and information technology programs, and offers the latest innovations from the library/information science community.