Help for the technophobic librarian

Today’s class on Help for the Technophobic Librarian was fun! We talked about all things techie, with folks that have patrons in every day doing techie things. Library directors and others who are interested in technology came to the event.  Some takeaways:

Our patrons are doing 2.0 things every day on our computers. Are our librarians in the 2000’s or are we back in 1999?

Thomas Friedman said, “It’s all about how you horizontalize. It’s who addresses this clean power challenge the best that will find the most productivity.”  Thomas Friedman, \”The world is flat 3.0\”

We need to realize that it’s the masses of people who are deciding how businesses run and even the libraries. We need to “learn it or die” as one attendee said.  After all, “the people in the library are doing it like crazy,” continued another librarian.

Is an iLibrary in Your Future?

I just received a request from a state agency for audio books. After spending some frustrating minutes with our Overdrive collection I had this idea:

Has anyone ever heard of Apple licensing their iTunes store software? I think that iTunes would be the perfect platform for libraries to use to provide access to their digital music, video, podcasts, courseware, games, and audio books.

Libraries have been stricken by massive inside-the-box thinking. The library model has always been that (1) access needs to be provided through an online catalog; (2) that materials should be provided for free; and (3) that library customers should borrow and return items.

Continue reading Is an iLibrary in Your Future?

Books are my drug of choice

Herriman» Last Thursday, I attended an open house. There were no refreshments, no wine or cheese. Not even root beer and Fritos for that matter. It was in the Herriman City Library.

The Herriman library is actually only a library in the sense that it has books, a few shelves, and is run by women who seem nice enough but are probably capable of violence if you make too much noise. .

Currently, our book repository is just a couple of rooms in a strip mall behind a Jiffy Lube. It’s not bad as small libraries go, but frankly I have more books in my basement. We deserve a better one. Not only has Herriman grown, plenty of us can even read.

The good news is that a new bigger and better library is on the way. The open house was to show off the artist’s renderings and give the public a chance to talk to the architects, county officials and workers without having to whisper.

Continue reading Books are my drug of choice

Cache County Library study

Cache County government did a feasibility study this past year to decide whether to consolidate into a county-wide system.  While there are difficult issues to overcome,  the benefits far outweigh the risks. In the long run, patrons can benefit from the increased number of books and materials available, staff can benefit from an increased network for training and support. It just may move literacy forward in some exciting ways.

Logan City remains supportive of the creation of a Cache County Library System. Jay Monson, chairman of the Countywide Library System Committee, says that “the Logan City Council and mayor hope that the Cache County Council and administration will lead in this endeavor. The beginnings of a system would certainly be a major step forward and far better than no system at all.”  Jay talks about a quasi-countywide system  as a possible first step. That’s a great idea imho. There is a lot of info on their blog.

Though the task may seem insurmountable at first blush, Cache County should think about how to make it work even though they may not start on opening day with all the pieces that other library systems have taken years to develop.  That, too, will come.

Gaming in the Library

By Linda Fields, Richfield Public Library Director

I received a Professional Excellence Grant from the Utah State Library to attend the Association for Rural and Small Libraries Conference in Sacramento in September. I’ve attended the ARSL conference when it was only being held in Columbus, OH and I felt I gained enough from those meetings to make it worthwhile to attend again.

One of the programs I attended was “Video Games in the Library” by Kieran Hixon. I chose to attend this because I thought “Gaming in the Library? No way!” Sometimes I find it wise to learn about something when I have a poor attitude toward it.

The misconception that gaming is done on the internet was the main basis for my attitude. Over the years, children and internet use has proved a challenge to libraries and it was a challenge I didn’t want to tackle. So gaming is not a new activity. If you think about gaming as internet games, board games and card games, gaming has been done in libraries for years. Continue reading Gaming in the Library