Day 3 Liveblog (Sunday, Oct 21)
Access 2013 in Newfoundland at Memorial University!
Why is it so hard to give away free books? (Marc Pillon)
- Out with the Desk: Reshaping Service Delivery in Public Libraries
- Keeping them relevant and accessible to people’s lives
- Challenges: people perceive them as inconvenient/impractical in today’s digital world, budgets are shrinking, patrons expect a different kind of service, some areas are even trying to get their libraries to close (sign from Troy, MI)
- What do people expect? McDonalds without a drive thru, waiting days for your digital prints, not being able to get gas on Sunday was true not that long ago
- Windsor Public Library (WPL) looking for new services and outreach: PC has its own banking system, post office at Shoppers Drug Mart -- sharing of spaces makes getting things done more convenient to the public -- what libraries should look to to provide service
- Vision for public libraries in the 21st century: CONVENIENCE, being able to deliver services anywhere, less traditional bricks-and-mortar, more locations for drop-off/pick-up/access to technology, partner with existing retail outlets in key locations for access
- Library-in-a-box (2010): Bring equipment anywhere you go, can check out books -- all the resources a librarian or clerk would need nowhere near a branch. Good because there was access to ILS anywhere, small enough to carry to a location and location is only limited by wireless signal. Bad because it was still bulky and required an IT support member
- Introducing Can GURU (2012 CLA Award for Innovation Technology): wireless receipt printer, iPad and iPhone
- Inspired by Apple store, highly portable, lightweight and easy to use, made of inexpensive consumer products that are readily available and can easily be replicated by other libraries. Bringing the service to the customer.
- Brings it back to the library, highlights the importance of the librarian, gets to people wherever we are, roving to enhance customer service with the ability to start and complete transactions, eliminates desks
- Lauzon Mobile Branch: vacant unit in social housing complex, collaboration between social services, library, parks and recreation and other nonprofit organizations
- CanGURU Technology: 3G or wifi for connectivity, VPN for authenticated access, RDP protocol for access to ILS software, client devices such as iPad or notebook, Bluetooth and iOS
- Future improvements: faster wireless will improve performance, streamlined connectivity process, self-check version for iPad, patron version for self-check, implement SIP3 if it is ever released, integrated with RFID, porting to Android and Windows8
- Where should libraries locate? Big box stores/large retail centres, coffee shops, train stations/airports, hospitals, parks, university/college campus
- Library Live at Fraser Valley Regional Library, BC
- Detroit Public Library Discotech: taking technology from the branches and sharing it in different ways (creative way of getting services out)
- Victoria’s Secret opened a PINK store at the Dallas Cowboy’s stadium
- LIVE DEMO!
Questions for Marc:
Could you use less devices and has it been sold?
- Yes, we can and do. Phone is better for circulation checkouts. Can be sold.
How does library staff feel about it and how do you know what to bring?
- Much positive response: good to get out into the neighbourhoods, problem is that 3G connection can be variable. We now have circulation stats that are more reliable. To Lauzon branch, they bring about 50 books and get to know patrons.
Are you thinking of building your own handheld device to reduce costs?
- Thinking of building an open source RFID system, contact him for more details
We can do better! Integrating APIs to improve the user experience (Sonya Betz and Robert Zylstra)
- Problem at MacEwen: All of these different online environments that are difficult for users to navigate: website, Libguides, room booking, e-reserves, circulation...all different and limited in customizability
- Hard for students to understand how they work together and hard to train them, which can be a huge time commitment
- Users will behave in ways that are intuitive to them
- Shared ILS with other libraries in Edmonton: need to request books off-site
- Offering new degree programs, so collections budgets have increased, but there is no point in expanding collections if users cannot get to these materials
- LibQual 2011 survey
- Search engines suck and shouldn’t be so difficult
- Hard interface on MacEwen website for mobile devices
- Project proposal: Virtual Services Integration Project to simplify access to library resources, provide access via all devices and provide common experiences between different platforms
- Deliverables: mobile (iOS) for fall 2012 and full-scale web (responsive design) for fall 2013
- Key concepts: one access point replaces multiple ones, mobile and desktop interfaces, user aware, fast and predictable
- Mottos: think big, start small, move fast (Michael Edson) -- and also -- we’re not always the experts
- Where are we now? Launched app on October 9
- Service integration: consolidating user experience through web services and apps
- [Simulator Display] Authentication to app using LDapp, tokens get sent back and out for extra content to Sirsi
- Sirsi web services allows users to place holds, see items out and fees, as well as do renewals
- Search: EDS API (documentation and response time need to be improved)
- Library information: more important things are contact, hours and location, so these are featured
- Featured lists: search for new materials in the ILS
- Next: MusicBranz, citations, Alexander Street Press (streaming video and audio), flagging and organizing favorites with sharing capabilities, library maps, barcode scans, NFC/RFID
- Mobile usage in libraries statistics: usage keeps increasing, mostly via Apple devices
- Recap: mobile app will act as the “pilot” for the CMS, app infrastructure will serve as a basis for CMS (hopefully Drupal), CMS and app will share user preference and content
- Timeline: proposal (October 2011), funding (May 2012), iPhoneApp (October 2012), CMS (September 2013)
Questions for Rob and Sonya:
App infrastructure as basis for CMS...please elaborate.
- Infrastructure, not code, will be transferable. More in-house development for CMS because we have the skills. Use a different CMS than the university.
Will responsive web design and app coexist?
- Yes. Experiences with apps cannot always happen with web-based sites. Responsive web design will be good, but apps will be better
How much marketing did the library do?
- A lot, worked directly with marketing and communications on campus, interviews with student newspapers, on flat-screens around campus, banner publicity and a public press release and talked to all the teaching librarians with a slide to add to every presentation (and they reach 80% of their students) which bumped up use
How many hours of design time?
- About 800 hours. It is helpful to outsource
Is code available?
- No because it was commissioned. Hard decision, but the best one for us in our current situation.
Spalatum: Digital preservation that can survive the fall of the Roman Empire (A personal digital repository)
- We’re all going to die. You put your digital stuff somewhere and your family has to deal with it. This makes it easier to deal with--
- The idea is that it handles two phases
- The digital repository
- Foman: supported by engineer
- post-Roman period: used and copied but not maintained
- AIP is DIP: based on directory structure, static html for navigation
- render objects in as many formats as possible
Q: Advice for a programmer who wants to go to library school and doesn’t want to work in a public library. Can you recommend a program?
A1: Matters what you make out of the experience (...but Syracuse would love to have you!)
A2: The current trend is now towards iSchools, but may not be a good fit for you with your background. Perhaps a more traditional program would be better.
A3: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has a great program.
[Blogger note: http://hacklibschool.wordpress.com/ is great place to start your research and get the inside scoop.]
Q: Who manages your digital repository and what does that team of people look like?
A: Collaborative group between IT, libraries, and web team
A2: We have a bunch of software developers, couple of systems admins, increasingly blurred lines between the two. We use puppet; We have a team of product owners and the idea is that their job is to maintain the relationships with the owners of collection and keep relationships with other teams …
Q: Are we doing enough to ensure that the next generation of library leaders understands the importance of IT?
A1: lead by example. Do it well.
A2: there is always this “IT sucks” thing. IT peeps are more extroverts than introverts. You’re in customer service and so are we. Don’t be a victim. Cookies help (as does beer). We’re drawing lines all the time that we don’t need to.
A3: Reward based on interest and not current skill
A4: Encourage IT inclined staff to be involved in library search jobs. Put IT people on the search committee and interviews to vet the tech skills that are thrown on the job description
Q: If you have a tattoo, I’d like to take a photo of it. If I haven’t...please seen me.
A: … [Don't be shy, the internet knows you exist]
Q: How can we make libraries more resilient in the future. What should we be doing/reading?
Different than efficiency. Able to withstand a very harsh puncture or long erosion
A1: Investing in community developed software; local skills for local staff is an important part of that. Get off of the grant funded development treadmill. It may make sexy for products and presentations, but doesn’t produce software or staff models that can stand the test of time.
A2: We need to get better about sharing and to so in a productive way (e.g. tech specs. where are they? make it easy to find) We need to think about communication and partnering. Work as a community and put our institutional egos aside.
A3: Start thinking a lot about the ways we fail the most. Instead of getting a “sorry, your search returned nothing” have an API and search outside of the community
A: Physical resilience: disaster recovery plan and emergency planning documents. Take it seriously and plan for those eventualities
A: I’d like to see more resilient leadership. Something that enables risk taking w/o evil response. We need a different type of leadership.
A: Libraries have a great brand and we can’t lose that (or the trust of people). Access 1999: a lot of the ideas/topics did not age well, but the Community freenet idea is still relevant..we’re good at sharing so we need to push that
A: We need to find better ways to throw projects and see if they stick (and be okay if they don’t). Find a way to have the courage to say, “Okay. Let’s try it.” It’s more than just leadership--grassroots issue, too. It’s about the community around us and our peers who may judge if your past two projects didn’t stick.
Q: Regarding the falling boundaries of libraries/archives/museums. Ultimately a good thing, but if I’m not trained in these areas how do I support their needs that I’m being asked to fulfill? They do have different traditions, so how do I navigate these without looking like a fool?
A1: Invite them next year
A2: UofA, University archives and museum are slowly merging into the library structure
Brain Injuries, Science Fiction, and Library Discovery
- She is VERY happy to be here
- 2012 has been about how brains work (and also her own after recovering from a brain injury)
- We are all doing the things we do because they feel good on some level
- rewards happen through neurotransmitters
- Flow: the phenomenon of intrinsically motivated or autotelic activity: activity reward in and of itself (auto = self, telos = goal)
- in the library: we’ll always need to help those working on a paper they don’t want to write, but we should work to make our collections enjoyable and create flow within those collections
- people involved in libraries don’t do it for the money
- This came from a research project on how students within humanities and social sciences browse library materials
- browsing is VERY important to them
- used emotional words to describe the physical act of browsing in the library
- very different from the language used to describe their electronic browsing experience
- At the same time, Stanford was doing some research on faculty and the impact of shutting down the physical collections and moving it to storage
- limits access
- upset faculty because browsing is important for their research and they were concerned for its survival
- she had a stroke and wrote about how it and how it impact the way she viewed relationships and though patterns
- tapped into her right brain consciousness
- if you can’t read her book, watch her TEDtalk
- System 1: fast, instinctual, emotional, subconscious, feels effortless
- background processing
- this is what we’re observing in serendipity (theory: part of that preparedness is related to emotions)
- where our emotions come from
- those cut off from their emotions (e.g. brain damage) have cognitive issues
- System 2: slow, effortful
- changes how the cognitive system operates
- What does this mean for libraries?
“...the emotional side of design may be more critical to a product’s success than its practical elements.”
- What are we doing RIGHT in libraries?
- replicating shelf browsing in online systems
- virtual shelf list
- surfacing more and more of our collection in our main collection
- enhancing browsing by extending it to different parts of the collection not otherwise browsed
- SALTworks --Archiving tool
- semi automated metadata making is getting better and will continue to do so over time
- more and more archives are not digital
- We are positioning ourselves for future innovation
- Getting flow in our collections: how do we get there?
- The solution will come to us if we watch the development of humanities research, 3-D video games, etc.
- anyone who builds digital libraries should read Rainbow’s End by Vernor Vinge
- Unseen University Library [please see presenter slides for link]
- if we could tap into the 3-D video game world to replicate the library in an immersive 3-D experience
- how can a digital catalogue make a user feel embodied?
- Sci-Fi is full of futurist ideas for the library
- together we can push to make these endeavors happen
Q: Scalability is an issue. Hogwarts....what is the number to make this understandable?
A: Would love to see more artwork in catalogue and archeology stuff. Love to see curated exhibits within the catalogue. Virtual room with the library holdings, with paintings, with shelves
- keeping things on the human scale is important as is tapping into those curiosities
Q: We can not only return to browse, but do it better. Bring in extra dimensions. Have you ever seen a browse experience where it’s a whole body...what if it felt tactile? Has anyone tried to do this?
A: yes, it’s all about people visiting physical library. where some serendipity research is happening. Serendipity is not magical, it’s tied to our thinking process. Haven’t seen anything about replicating that in the virtual word, maybe it’s too early.
Q: [missed it. something about call numbers and how searching or browsing via call numbers within the catalogue seems like a librarian secret because users are often not aware of these tools]
A: Call numbers are a secret, untapped source that we could be doing more with. Some material doesn’t have it, but copy cataloguing does make it possible. In a virtual browsing system, there is no reason why you can’t shelve the same book in two or more places. You don’t have to stick to the traditional one book, one subject.
Comment: [...]How can you be in the flow when you have to enter authentication codes, etc.? It interrupts the flow. Happy to see you mentioning flow and gamification of the process. [...]
Comment: A faculty member who has been browsing the shelf for research has trained their system 1 very well to do that. A teenager who uses reddit does not have that skill (& vice versa). We are trying to take the old literate skills and apply that to a digital realm. People find information the way they know how. Their brains are different than ours and worth considering as we plan for the future.
Comment: Focus groups need to go beyond grey-haired faculty members. Maybe look at 8 year olds and they way they look at information so we can learn from them.
That’s the end of Access 2012! See you next year in Newfoundland!