SEND AN SMS to ask a research question and get answers within a day? We can now do this with a new SMS Reference Service trial at the National Library Board (NLB) these two months.
The SMS Reference Service, the latest initiative from NLB [was] launched during the FIND IT campaign. Customers can SMS their reference queries to the National Library by dialing 9178 7792 on their mobile phones. The SMS Reference Service is targeted at educators, designers, entreprenuers, researchers, consultants, academics and tertiary students who need to find the sources to answer their information, reference and research needs. This service adds to the suite of email, fax, phone and onsite reference services currently provided by reference librarians and gives customers the option to pose their queries from virtually anywhere and on the move.
Sample SMS queries:
- Info on history of Hoover Park Estate in Singapore (related to the Heritage Collection)
- Info about the beauty industry in Middle East. Where can I find the info and resources? (related to the Business collection)
- I want information on early childhood education, including journal articles. (related to the Education collection)
- What is the role of design in Adidas? What are some of their famous products and what is their design significance? (related to the Design collection)
The operating hours of this service are as follows:
Monday to Friday 9am to 9pm
Saturday 9am to 5pm
Sunday 1pm to 5pm
Closed on Public Holidays
Each SMS is limited to 160 characters. If more than 160 characters are sent, the message will be broken up into 2 or more SMS. Users of this service will receive an auto-generated SMS reply after sending out the enquiry. The turnaround time for an actual response to an enquiry will be up to one working day. SMS enquiries received after 9pm on weekdays, after 5pm on Saturdays and Sundays and on public holidays will be attended to the next working day. An automatic acknowledgement SMS will be sent to users, informing them of the above. This service is free of charge and users need only pay their mobile phone service provider the usual SMS charges.
What you can expect from the service :
Reference librarians from the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library at the new National Library will recommend materials from our library collections as well as electronic and web resources to help you with your information needs. For simple fact-seeking questions, we will also be able to SMS you quick answers. The turnaround time for recommendation of resources would be about one day while quick answers could be provided as soon as we can!
What a great idea! When will such sms services be available industry-wide? For example, sms support services for advice/help, sms sports/beauty centres to book or cancel sessions, sms restaurants to order meals, sms taxi companies to book a cab, sms a corporate mobile line to apply for urgent leave and to inform colleagues…
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