First up is SurfRI. Apparently, RI is one of only two states (and DC) that does NOT have some sort of statewide library database (or virtual library) system. Um, that's really sad (I am finding that RI in general is woefully behind in the tech realm of librarianship, as a whole - but that's a post/rant for another day). Thankfully, the state library system is looking into rectifying that situation, and has set-up a free trial of a statewide database prototype - SurfRI. The free trial extends through April 15, and it seems that anyone is welcome to go in and take a look around - and I hope you do.
I spent a few minutes checking it out, and , wow, there's a lot of stuff here! I played with the online version of Culture Grams (which for some reason is one of my favorite print reference sources), checked out the EBSCO databases that we don't currently have access to, and cruised the Reader's Guide Full Text (a WilsonWeb product). Cool. Lots to look at here.
What really bums me out, however, is that I did not hear one word about this at work. I wonder how that is possible - do my coworkers not know about this? Or did no one find it interesting enough to mention? Sadly, since we do not currently have any actual leadership and no one to update the website, the best I can do is post it on the not-often-read blog. But post it, I will. And bookmarks, I can make bookmarks (which are much more popular that the blog).
And, oh, I am liking the SurfRI name. I think it fits. I just hope that if this does become a reality that they will change the web interface. The one that is up is fine for a trial, but it's pretty unexciting (and yellow).