Home > New Library Catalog > How to Use the New Features

How to Use the New Features

Logo image

About the New Catalog

The Hillsborough County Public Library Cooperative went live with a new library catalog, Polaris on April 29, 2013!

Polaris offers many new enhancements and tools for library customers:


Follow steps outlined below to start using these new features today!

Saved Searches

About this feature

Want to know the exact moment when your favorite fiction author's next book will hit the library bookshelves? Set up an automated saved search in our new Polaris catalog and you will be notified and able to place holds on new books as soon as they become available!

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > My Account > Saved Searches

First time use

To use for the first time, the customer must select 'yes' when prompted 'Are you sure you want to enable this feature'?

Users must opt in to this feature because it saves data associated with their accounts.

How to use

  1. Set up and run a search (any type except Browse).
  2. Click Save Search near the top of the page.
  3. Log In to your account (if have not already logged in)
  4. Supply information for your saved search, including:
    • A name for the search to help identify it in your list of saved searches
    • Email address that will receive the search results
    • Search frequency (weekly or monthly)
    • Number of times to run the search
  5. Click Save Search to save.

Customized Username/Password

About this feature

Get creative! Our new Polaris catalog allows you to manage your library account with a customized username and password.

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > My Account > My Record > Change Login section.

How to use

Usernames:
All usernames must begin with a letter (a-z, A-Z), can contain letters, numbers, and the special characters - _ . @ (Spaces are not allowed, and special characters cannot be contiguous.)
The username must be at least 4 characters.
Customized usernames work strictly within the Polaris catalog. To access library electronic resources including research databases, users outside of a library building will be prompted to enter their library barcode number.

Passwords:
All passwords are required to be numeric (0-9) passwords.

Apps

About this feature

Brand new library apps are available! Search, read descriptions and place holds on items from our new Polaris catalog with ease from your Android or iOS device!

Find it

Find the apps in the Google Play and Apple iTunes stores. Additional features including related items available soon.

Mobile Catalog

All mobile users, including Windows and Kindle devices, are automatically directed to the Mobile catalog. The mobile catalog is a web app that has been optimized for mobile devices.

Children's Catalog

About this feature

Our new Polaris catalog has a special, separate catalog that ONLY searches children's materials. This kid-friendly site makes it easier than ever for children to locate relevant and appropriate materials selected just for them.

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > Kid's Catalog tab.

How to use

You can search by typing a word, or you can click a link to search a category.

Get help with any topic by clicking the 'For more help' link near the bottom of the page.

Reading History

About this feature

We know it can be hard to remember a title of a book you read a few weeks ago. Keep track of the books you've checked out and returned to the library by enabling your "Reading History."

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > My Account > Reading History

First time use

To use for the first time, the customer must select 'yes' when prompted 'Are you sure you want to enable this feature'?

Users must opt in to this feature because it saves data associated with their accounts.

Using Reading History

Map It

About this feature

Want to know EXACTLY where the book you want is located? Our new Polaris catalog has a 'Map it' feature, which displays an interactive map that tells you where your desired title is checked in throughout the county.

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > Search for an item > Receive a search results list > Full Display button

How to use

  1. In your search results list, click the title, the Full Display button for the title, or the book jacket image to see more information about the title.
  2. Scroll down to Map It. A map displays markers for branch locations that have available items. You can place the cursor over a marker to see the branch name.
  3. Click a branch marker to see the branch's address, hours, and details about the availability counts at that branch.
  4. Click Get Directions in the hours window to get directions to the branch from any address. Simply enter your address and click Go!. (If you are logged in, the address from your library record is already filled in, but you can change it.)

What the markers indicate

Text It

About this feature

Not a fan of golf pencils and scrap paper? Our new Polaris catalog includes a feature that allows for you to text the call number of the book you are interested in straight to your mobile phone!

Find it

Find this feature in the Catalog > Search for an item > Search results list > Availability button

How to use

  1. Click the Text It icon and a small window opens over the current page.
  2. If you are logged in and your library account record includes a phone number designated for TXT and a carrier, the Phone number and Carrier fields are already set.
  3. Otherwise, type the phone number to receive the text message and select a carrier from the list.
  4. Then click Send.

Save Titles with My Lists

About this feature

Doing research or creating a list of books to read? Try using a title list to gather and save information from your search results.

Find it

Catalog > Search for an item > Receive a search results list > Add to My List link

First time use

To use for the first time, the customer must select 'yes' when prompted 'Are you sure you want to enable this feature'?

Users must opt in to this feature because it saves data associated with their accounts.

How to Use

  1. Login to your library account
  2. In the search results display, locate the title you want to add to the title list, and click Add to List.
  3. Choose New List when prompted to create a new list
  4. Give the list a name and then choose Create List
  5. The new list has been created and saved to your library account. To continue to add titles to this list, repeat step 2. To return to your current set of search results, click the Back button on the browser twice.
  6. On the left side of the page, under Saved Title Lists, click on the list name to view the list. There are also options to print, email and delete this list.

If you do not log in first, all saved titles will be added to the Working Title list. Your working title list is available for your current session only. The working title list can be emailed, printed or saved as a file.