The Internet Public Library, or IPL or ipl2, is a non-profit organization with a website hosted by students at Philadelphia’s Drexel University. The IPL was founded at the University of Michigan in 1995, and since then, has provided reference material on a wide array of subjects. The site has direct information, as well as compilations of source data. Below are a few of the things you can research through this site.
- Entertainment – Users can research any number of topics, from movie reviews to outdoor entertainment and leisure activities. Restaurant guides are available, as well as news of Broadway and Hollywood.
- Health News – The library is a good source for health and medical news, whether you need information on nutrition, illness or anatomy, and sources are easy to identify.
- Newspapers – Click on a state and instantly pull up a list of periodicals. Within seconds, you can verify, in the Virginia Informer, that the College of William and Mary is about to institute mandatory meal plans for students, in order to help shore up sagging revenues.
- Magazines – ipl2 is the place to go when you need to access the Merriam-Webster online magazine, Word, where you can delve deeply into the June, 2011 word-of-the-month, “travesty”, and see how Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia may have misused the word in a recent opinion.
- Travel – The Budget Traveler’s Guide to Sleeping in Airports is a must-read for those who plan to spend most of their two-week vacations waiting in airport lines, as their luggage enjoys the sunny beaches of Cancun.
- Education – Teachers like the site because they can access a world of information on teaching techniques and class activities, as well as finding blogs and chats on almost every educational topic.
- Computer – Have a question about your computer? Ipl2 can steer you to answers, on subjects ranging from search tips to hardware specifications to blogs on the latest innovations.
- Search Help – Sometimes research criteria can be vague, and the Internet Public Library has a “wildcard” feature in its search apparatus that helps broaden searches using alphanumeric techniques.
- Literature – Information about literature and authors is easy to access, ranging from Ray Bradbury’s biography to attempts to censor the works of William Shakespeare to criticisms of modern works.
- Ask the Librarian – This feature allows users to type a question that will be researched by staff librarians, a service currently offered 24/7, and the librarians will respond via email. Also available is a FAQ section, which can speed up research.
Educators and lay persons alike can benefit from the offerings of this virtual library, and students should be able to use the site for valuable term paper help.