December 20, 2014

Survey: Library Ebook Growth Slowing but Still Substantial

Library Journal’s fifth annual Ebook Usage in U.S. Public Libraries report

Ninety-five percent of public libraries currently offer ebooks to patrons, up from 72 percent in 2010, and 89 percent in both 2012 and 2013. However, money remains the biggest impediment for libraries looking to add ebooks or expand collections, according to Library Journal’s fifth annual Ebook Usage in U.S. Public Libraries report, sponsored by Freading. The growth in demand for ebooks has cooled during the past four years, although as the report notes, this “is only because [ebooks] have become less of a novelty and more mainstream.”

Westport Maker Space Expands with Robots, SolidWorks Courses, and Volunteer Training

Westport Robot Reading

The Westport Library’s ongoing efforts to support its Maker Space, including Maker in Residence programs and the recent acquisition of two programmable robots, have helped establish a virtuous cycle in which residents have begun working on their own projects and helping one another independently.

SLJ Reviews zSpace, a 3-D Platform for the Classroom

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Educator Jason Sellers reviews zSpace, which enables users to view and manipulate objects in a unique, immersive experience.

Queens Library Develops Innovative New Tablet Platform Using Superstorm Sandy Donation | TDS14

Queens Library Google Nexus 7 tablets

When superstorm Sandy hit the east coast in October 2012, the Queens Library (QL) in New York was among many northeastern library systems affected. QL persevered, continuing to offer crucial services in storm-ravaged communities while rebuilding damaged branches. The system also managed to turn a generous corporate donation into an innovative new platform for tablet computers, enabling a tech lending program that has since continued to grow.

Lessons From Rebuilding a Server

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As scary as this statement is, I’m my own SysAdmin. This does not come from choice, mind you, but necessity. Sure, I could farm out server administration like many do, but I’ve never found the complete flexibility and power from such arrangements that having your very own server provides. So I make do. And “making […]

SLJ Reviews the AWE Tablet: A fast device, delivering blended content to individual students

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Chad Sansing assesses AWE’s tablet device, with advice on its potential use in the classroom.

Penn State’s One Button Studios Now Used 4,500 Times Per Year

Penn State One Button Studio logo

The two “one button” simplified video recording studios at the Pennsylvania State University (PSU) Library’s Tombros and McWhirter Knowledge Commons have proven exceptionally popular and are now used for about 4,500 recording sessions per year.

Next Generation Tech Solutions Could Help Readers and Librarians

It wasn’t too long ago that people thought reading books on a computer could never replace the real, ink-and-paper feel of a good old-fashioned book. And while people continue to appreciate books in their traditional form, sales of Amazon’s Kindles topped $4.5 billion last year, according to research by Morgan Stanley. More telling, though, is how normal it seems to read a book on an electronic device. But scientists and developers haven’t stopped there. New technology continues to challenge our notions of what we read, how we read, and who has access to reading.

Greenburgh PL Installs Audio Induction Loop for Hearing Impaired

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Using funding provided by a local chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America, New York’s Greenburgh Public Library this spring installed an audio frequency induction loop (AFIL) in its multipurpose room. AFILs enable public address systems and other AV equipment to send audio transmissions directly to hearing aids, eliminating background noise for hearing impaired visitors.

Anticipatory Discovery and One-Click Server Installs Among LITA Top Tech Trends | ALA 2014

LITA Top Tech Trends 2014 panel

Anticipatory and contextual discovery, open hardware, one-click server installs, mobile-first design, institutional digital assets management, and even biohackerspaces were some of the topics discussed this year at the Library and Information Technology Association’s (LITA) Top Tech Trends panel, held June 29 at the American Library Association (ALA) 2014 Annual Conference.