LITA Top Tech Trends PLA 2010

photoWifi was not working for me so I ended up being a “have-not” at this morning’s Top Tech Trends program. So I typed up notes and here they are! Apologies if I got anything wrong, but there were a lot of ideas being thrown around! Thanks to everyone on the panel.

Michael Porter

  • libraries need a new electronic content distribution and access infrastructure
  • libraries operate on content and community
  • an organization needs to be created to develop this type of system, one that can articulate why we need to do this and to get the programmers and the legal experts to work on this
  • an organization that isn’t pre-existing so that it isn’t bound by anything
  • question from audience: what is “it” exactly?
  • problem: amazon and apple (itunes) have created electronic access infrastructures that are proprietary and have shut libraries out completely

Monique Sendze

  • smart phone and augmented reality
  • superimposing digital data on top of reality
  • libraries becoming more intelligent with sharing data with patrons
  • walking into a library and holding up your phone, getting information about materials (reviews, related programs, subject headings) right away
  • qrcodes – 2d barcodes
  • sacramento and contra costa libraries are on their way to using qr codes
  • using qr codes for readers advisory. putting on popular materials. qrcodes provide read-alikes and reviews. mobile tagging.
  • qrcodes out in the community to help ppl connect to the library’s materials, services, and events even when they’re not in the library building
  • not mainstream yet but it has a future in libraries
  • question: who’s going to develop those augmented reality apps?
  • question: how are you going to train staff on many different phones so they can help patrons? a: no different from the plethora of e-readers out there and knowing how to use those devices. a new type of librarianship where we can provide assistance with technology devices.
  • kate: we can’t say “no” anymore, we need to get in there and figure it out
  • michael: if we keep in mind our mission, we’re going to be fine because we’re going to do things to keep up with what ppl want, which includes technology

David Lee King

  • e-book readers
  • first e-book: 1971
  • right now at least 20 different manufacturers creating e-book readers
  • many different operating systems and formats
  • different kinds of screens
  • like the 1990s with video, lots of different formats, manufacturers, etc.
  • all going to change in a few days with the ipad coming out
  • 1984 apple changed the computer industry
  • ipod changed music industry
  • iphone changed cell phone industry
  • ipad is going to do the same thing to the gaming industry and the e-book industry
  • thinks ipad is going to be a better e-book reader because of the touch tech, color, screen, multi-touch, publishers involved (six large publishers), other features
  • how does this affect libraries? can your entire staff use e-books if patrons ask. huge problem.
  • another problem, a lot of these ppl will go around libraries now and go directly to apple
  • will libraries check out e-book readers and how will this happen?
  • michael: the ease of access to the content really made the iphone attractive
  • also, apple had the distribution system figured out with iphone and itunes, exact same thing is happening to the ipad
  • michael: don’t think about the brand (apple, netflix, etc), but think about the functionality instead. why do ppl like to use something? what do they do that makes them successful?
  • twitter q: how do we train our staff if we can’t afford to buy these tech gadgets? d: friends group is funding purchase of tech toys. k: patrons might have gadgets and might be willing to show staff how to use these tools
  • michael: makes him angry that we’re the info professionals and we have to ask patrons to use something that we can’t afford to provide. we’re the best at this, why can’t we get the things we need? we need something new.
  • monique: vendors should be giving us these devices
  • question: what about the ppl who are the have nots, the ppl who don’t have this tech.
  • michael: if we can’t figure out how to crack the “content” nut, we’re not going to have enough support to keep the lights on.

Kate Sheehan

  • Change in the Digital Divide
  • jessamyn west recently did a presentation on this, slides available at librarian.net
  • we’re usually talking about the “haves” when talking about top tech trends
  • to some extent, we need to make some peace with that. BUT we’re heading down a dangerous path if we completely ignore the ppl who have not
  • we’re getting more ppl coming online, ppl need instruction and help with technology
  • ppl are going to come in with their stuff and want to have content that works with what they have
  • libraries are safe places to learn about technology, we’re nice and not going to judge ppl about lack of knowledge or skills
  • monique: stats show that 40% of americans still don’t have internet in their homes, big problem. for quite some time yet, libraries are going to be that safe haven for the havenots. however, we need to be mindful that we’re not pushing away the haves and the more advanced users. perfect example: charlotte’s imagineon
  • dlk: find out who you’re customers are focus on serving them. don’t think of it in terms of the underserved and overserved. in topeka, “underserved” are the upper middle class who don’t live near the library. the lib has never tried serving them. that’s who the lib in topeka needs to focus on.

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