FARMINGTON — The Farmington Public Library is offering the public an opportunity to try the latest in tablet and e-reader technology for free.

The library's Technology Petting Zoo will feature a variety of tablets and e-readers as part of its newly implemented technology classes and new applications for smartphones and tablets.

"It's part of getting the public aware of library resources," said Betty Decker, the library's download project manager.

The Technology Petting Zoo will be held today from 10 a.m. to noon and on Sunday from 1-5 p.m. in the library's Multipurpose Room.

It will feature three stations. One for e-readers, one for iPads and a third for other tablet devices.

The Farmington Public Library Foundation donated a Google Nexus 7 tablet to be given away in a drawing for library visitors on Dec. 3. Visitors are invited to enter the drawing during the so-called petting zoo. Library staff will contact the winner following the drawing.

During the 2011 holiday season, many residents received new technology as gifts, said Aaron Boggs, the library's computer support supervisor. The library was flooded with people seeking help on how to use them.

Library staff began to discuss teaching a tablet-use class, and Decker suggested holding a technology petting zoo to allow the public to familiarize themselves with the different kinds of tablet technology and applications, Boggs said.


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"Out of the tablet class, we ended up acquiring a lot of technology," he said.

The tablet class, called "Tablets and Smartphones in the Library," focuses on how to use new technology to enhance the library experience.

Newly smartphone and tablet applications provide library visitors with a faster and streamlined process, Boggs said.

Overdrive Media Console will allow visitors to check out the library's e-books and audiobooks, he said. Access My Library provides people access to a number of the library's databases for research purposes.

More applications are on the way.

The library is waiting on the vendors for a release date, Boggs said.

"The library is and always will be an information center," Decker said.