Tag Archives: The Future of Libraries in the Digital Age

Library Visit Notes: Web 2.0, Staff Tech Support, Budgeting, Security & the like

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Web 2.0/subscription-based electronic materials & social media:

KFL social media is active weekly and sometimes daily via their blog, tweets, and Facebook, all which show a substantial following.  These options  allow for a fresh approach and instantaneous collaboration between patron and staff, a phenomenon that is on the rise in the world of libraries.

Patrons can access subscription-based audio and e-books from the website, do a catalog search for books, magazines, movies and use the free online genealogical records, and use ILL to find that elusive item that KFL may not have in-house.

Downloadable resource use has increased sharply since the library began offering pre-loaded e-readers (and since late 2011, downloadable audio & e-books).  Patron access to downloadable e-books increased 27% from FY 2012-FY 2013.  There was a slight decrease in computer use in FY 2012-13, but increased use of personal computers using the library’s Wi-Fi.

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Maine InfoNet Download Library

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Twitter Feed

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                                                                                       indieflix                                               KFL Family Search Center Posting

Other Technology/Behind the Scenes:

The library offers wireless printing (black/white for patrons, color for staff), faxing, LCD projector and sound system for outdoor use, DaVinci magnifier with speech to text, microfilm reader , 4 ipads for in-house educational tech classes and a scanner.  The staff offices were redesigned in 2013 for better ergonomics and work flow.  From all accounts, the improvement is welcomed and was a real boost to morale.

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copier at Front Desk

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Electronic Checkout!

(verbal permission granted by patron and staff)

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DaVinci magnifier

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Office computers

Tech Support:

Janet Cate reports that as far as humanly possible, the staff has educated themselves on the many facets of different technologies and has done a good deal of troubleshooting learning.  A local company is available 24/7 to deal with any challenges that are beyond their understanding.  This past October the library hired  a new technical services librarian, Michelle Williams, in response to the ongoing technical nature of the library system.  She will focus on technology and cataloging, and brings a strong background to the staff.

Building Upgrades, Best Practices  & Security:

Any library that moves into the 21st century of technology must make significant improvements to their physical building: outlets, Wi-Fi access, connectivity, heating and cooling, accessibility and security to name a few.

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Entry way automated elevator: one floor up to Adults, one floor down to Children’s

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Honeywell Automated Fire Alarm

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wireless access

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Best Practices: cell phone use

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barcoded computer security

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Extra outlets throughout

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Best Practices: still a place for peace and quiet!

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building security/Hoook, Line & Cable Securities

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wall-mounted security box at front entrance

Budgeting:

Libraries today must build evidence that supports their technological needs in order for funding and library associations to be able to justify their support of budget requests.  Questions & focus are important: some ideas may be fun but not really an actual need, should we try before we buy?, can the library afford it?, what percentage of patrons will benefit from the changes?

Kennebunk Free Library created a long range plan for 2013-2018 (http://kennebunklibrary.org/kennebunk/images/sitepics/long%20range%20plan%20final%209-20-13.pdf).  By researching community demographics, they were able to show that 67% of Maine homes have Internet access, ranking the state 32nd in 2010 and that Kennebunk has a median age of 48.2, compared to the state average age of 42.7.  The top 3 areas within KFL that were most effected by these statistics were collection choices, technology and services offered.

A patron survey further showed that after prioritizing improved parking (84%), other high priorities included mantaining current hours (82%), access to computers with Internet (82%), Wi-Fi access (81%) and the library website (77%).  These numbers clearly show a widespread need for technology at KFL.  While the town has a higher per capita income than other Maine towns, the average age and Internet access provide justification for investing in improved technology.

KFL works within a yearly budget of $625,000 (approximately).  The technology costs below were supplied by Janet Cate for 2014.  Of the $20,000 budgeted for technological needs, audio CDs cost $3600, $4500 was spent on DVDs and software costs were $800 for email blasts and promotion, Follett circulation and cataloging software.  The vast majority of the tech budget was for technology (repairs, new technology, website management, telephone technology, web hosting and monthly service contracts)and non-filter fees ($11,725).  One would suspect that this portion of the budget will only increase as time goes forward.

Pulling It All Together:

Kennebunk Free Library is a shining example of a small town library working to keep itself current in our new technological world.  They have worked tirelessly to keep themselves up-to-date on their technological skills, they have researched, budgeted, tested and requested funds for technology improvements on behalf of their patrons since 1997.  As a result they are just what and where they want to be: a living, breathing, creating hub of community activity for the Kennebunks.  Both their 5 year plan and the support of the Friends of the Kennebunk Library ensures that they will be ready for the challenges ahead.

(As always, please click on photos to enlarge and backclick to return to posting).

Cate, Janet. ( 2014). KFL finances for tech report.xls. Personal correspondence.

http://www.kennebunkfreelibrary.org

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Connected Librarian Day 2.014!

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    The Future of Libraries in the Digital Age

lib 2.014 advertisement

Professor Blesh offered us a link in her recent announcement – I want to share it here (Blesh, personal communication, 9.24.14).  The upcoming event is actually a pre-conference offered Tuesday, October 7th; times listed below.

While my interest doesn’t honestly lie in school librarianship, I look forward to a lot of useful information; I think it will be easily transferable to the public library or museum archive.  Signing up took all of 5 minutes, including the email verification.  I’m copying the info directly from the site called http://www.library20.com/page/connected-librarian-day  (please copy/paste and be aware the hyperlinks below will not necessarily work from my blog post; it’s best to go directly to the conference site).  I don’t expect to participate in all of them, but I will make an attempt to try 2-3, and if all else fails, there are notes available after. 

So here is the lowdown, hope you find it useful!

Tuesday, October 7th 2014

1pm – 7pm PDT / 4pm – 10pm EDT

This year, as a Library 2.014 pre-conference event for K-12 and Teacher Librarians (and anyone else who wants to join!), we’re holding Connected Librarian Day on Tuesday, October 7th.  This is an open, online, and free event sponsored by Follett and The Center for International Scholarship in School Libraries (CISSL) at Rutgers.

Read more about the 2014 Connected Librarian Day speakers below the schedule.

Schedule

Use the time zone converter to make sure you don’t miss out!

Click on the hyperlinked title to join each session

(again, you may have to do activate the link from the actual website)

12:30pm PDT / 3:30pm EDT – Welcome and About the Landscape with Britten Follett, Joyce Valenza, Ross Todd & Shannon Miller

1pm PDT / 4pm EDT – Heidi Neltner on “Your Stakeholder Connected Librarian Toolkit”

In the 21st Century, there are many options for staying connected to our school library stakeholders that include technology and good old fashioned face-to-face connections.  I’ll share some low-budget – mostly free!- tech tools and strategies you can use with ease to mindfully communicate your programming and success related to stakeholder priorities.

2pm PDT / 5pm EDT – Judy O’Connell on “Leadership in a connected age: change, challenge and productive chaos”

The 21st century school library leader recognizes that without keeping an eye on the future we may be doomed to remaining a prisoner of the past. With this eye on the future, the agile leader welcomes innovation, embraces change and thrives on chaos. But what skills are necessary to survive in the future? What do you need to do today? How will this affect you and your school community? Trends in knowledge construction, participatory cultures and social networks can give us the blueprint to successful leadership in our connected age. The good news is that by preparing today we can successfully meet the challenges of our global connected future of tomorrow.

3pm PDT / 6pm EDT – Michelle Luhtala on “Flipped Learning and the Essential Tools to Get you There”

What does it take to flip your program? Not much! This session will work through ten tools that will help school librarians flip instruction and help promote self-directed learning. Tools discussed will include course management systems, library management systems, eContent Cloud collaboration tools, online voicemail services, text-based instruction, student response applications, playlist creators, screencasting, and blogs.

4pm PDT / 7pm EDT – Patrice Bryan & Darcy Coffta on “Schools’ Vortex: Innovative Library Makerspaces”

The shift from consumption-based learning to creation-based learning means many schools are transforming the library into a makerspace. Award-winning, innovative programs attest to the success of this movement. We’ll look at what’s being done and how educators teach & students learn in this model. The ways we support and advocate for the change from a quiet environment to a bustling activity center will be explored by the panel, as well as ways to highlight & share successes with other schools. The two panelists will showcase recent success in their schools where the library is now the center of action. Here, learning is student-driven & project-based, & kids are producers and sharers of information. Collaboration is key and kids learn from each other. The panelists will share before, during, & after stories of their transition, including best practices.

5pm PDT / 8pm EDT – Matthew Winner & Sherry Gick on “When Sherry Met Matthew: Finding Your Educational Soulmate and Helping Kids to Rule the World”

Kids hold the solutions to the world’s problems, but need the opportunity to rise to the challenge. We asked kids how they would change the world and then constructed a learning environment to do exactly that. What resulted not only translated to an epic win for all of the kids involved, but one of the most meaningful projects we as teachers have ever been a part of. And when the going gets tough, the tough find an incredible educational counterpart to join on the journey.

6pm PDT / 9pm EDT – Jennifer LaGarde on “Imagining Library Spaces of the Future, Today”

Simply put, if your school library is still just a place where students go to check out books, you’re doing it wrong. Today’s school libraries should be places where students engage with information, each other and learners from around the world to ask big questions, solve real problems and build new knowledge. Let’s talk about ways that you can transform the library from a place where students simply consume information, to a participatory space where they create, design, engineer and build the information of the future.

7pm PDT / 10pm EDT – Closing Comments with Britten Follett, Joyce Valenza, Ross Todd & Shannon Miller

REFERENCE:

Hardagan, Steve. (2014). Library 2.0 The future of libraries in the digital age.  Received September 27, 2014 from http://www.library20.com/