"The library opened about 13 minutes ago, and already, three people are logged on," Senior Administrative Analyst Kevin Sarian said.
The library started the service about a month and a half ago, but was not advertising the program, he said.
"We were piloting it, because we have been trying to get the coverage to nearly 100%," Sarian said. "Now, it's gotten to the point where we feel like it's good enough."
Patrons with laptops, personal digital assistants and other devices that have wireless Internet capabilities can access the library's free Internet service in its main seating area, magazine area, teen area and in the second-floor public computer area, Sarian said.
The Internet access also spills outside of the library, a few feet from the main entrance, he said. And within the next two weeks, coverage will expand to the library's second-floor auditorium and children's area, bringing total coverage to about 90%, he said.
"Technology is becoming ever-present," Director of Libraries Nancy Hunt-Coffey said. "The trend is no longer that you sit at a desk with a beige box and a monitor in front of you. People expect a mobile lifestyle, and the library is becoming a technological center for the community. I think people come to expect that we'll have some of these cutting-edge things, like wireless Internet."
On average, about six to eight users are logged onto the Internet simultaneously throughout the day, with about 12 users logged on at once during peak hours ? between 2 to 4 p.m., Sarian said.
"On July 1, almost 60 separate logins occurred for the free wireless service," he said. "Monday, we had 50 logins. Taking into consideration that it was a holiday period, we are pleased with the usage."
The service isn't perfect, Lamar said.
Sometimes, Internet connection is slow, likely because so many people are logged into the network at once, he said.
"It can get annoying, because you have to wait," Lamar said.
But that is probably something that could eventually be fixed, Sarian said.
"Considering the Internet is becoming a viable and necessary tool, I don't see why we will not look into different remedies or options for the future," he said.
For now, however, library officials expect that its patrons ? especially small-business owners and students ? will be using the service frequently, Hunt-Coffey said. "If I were a student and I had a laptop and wanted to do research, I would come into the library, use the print resources, use the reference librarians, but also go onto the Internet and research journals or whatever and integrate all that on my laptop," she said. "The same goes for business professionals."
Library officials are hoping to expand the wireless Internet service to Glendale's other public library branches within the next six months, Sarian said.