The Information Commons is one of the most frequently used services provided by the libraries, but how much do our users really know about all the services we have available through them? How often do users really take the time to look at the Information Commons website? If you’ve been to the Dewey Library already you know we have a bunch of Info Commons computers available on the first floor, but if those are full there are more available for use downstairs and in the group study area. You can print from any of the library computers, as well. Just make sure you have your SUNY card with you, because it costs 10 cents per page. You might recall, if you’ve been keeping up with our blogs, that the circulation desk can also rent out laptops to students, faculty, and staff, so even if all of our desktops are in use, there are other options for you to get your work done.
But these computers have more on them than just the Internet and Microsoft Office programs. The Information Commons computers also come with a bunch of other programs, like Adobe products, media players, end note, and more. A full list of available software is available through the Info Commons website. Have a major project due that needs one of these programs, but can’t make it to campus on time? Access everything we have to offer through the Virtual Information Commons and save yourself a trip! You can also access your S: Drive from the Virtual Info Commons just like any on-campus computer. If you don’t already know, your S: Drive is a special virtual storage space just for you that can be accessed from any of the information commons computers. Make sure you save any work you do to that or your own flash drive because it won’t stay on the machine itself once you log off.
But what if something goes wrong, or you need help with accessing UAlbany IT services through your own laptop? Why, you just go up to the IT help desk in any of the libraries and ask for assistance! Trouble printing? Trouble accessing the university wireless from your laptop? A program not working properly on one of the library’s computers? The reference and circulation desks can only help so much with computer problems, so if an ITS consultant is available, ask them first for the best results! Keep an eye on their hours ] because they aren’t available at all times when the library is open.
One last helpful tool is the ability to check if any computers are free before even coming into the library. This can be especially helpful during finals time when competition for computers is fierce in all three of the libraries.
If you have any questions or need help with any ITS services, ask them at the help desk or call them at (518) 442-4000.
Blog post and photo created by Alex Hoag