Green Music Group Challenge

This could be a cool program idea, particularly with teens:

Current challenge deadline is coming up fast, July 30, but it looks like there are more challenges to come!

Challenge #8 just asks you to film yourself and your friends outside, not to too tough, particularly for those smart libraries that invested in a Flip Mino.

The future of cloud computing

The Pew Internet & American Life Project released a new report on June 11, 2010: “The future of cloud computing

“By 2020, most people won’t do their work with software running on a general-purpose PC. Instead, they will work in Internet-based applications such as Google Docs, and in applications run from smartphones.”

What will this mean for libraries? Some possibilities:

  • Less servers = smaller electric bill for the library
  • PCs purchased for patron use will not be configured the way the PCs we are buying today are; may possibly be just a box and monitor connected to the internet = cheaper hardware, less manufacturing
  • Size of PCs can diminish, taking up smaller footprint in library space
    • the report predicts that “the desktop will not die out but it will be used in new, improved ways in tandem with remote computing
  • Apps for smartphones from the library (catalog, databases, library’s web site) = digital library will take on new and different forms, people using services and facilities in different ways
  • Robust broadband connection = more, more, more
  • More power outlets for charging laptops/smartphones = design considerations
  • Software licensing a thing of the past? Open source options (Google Docs, Linux, etc.) meet the needs of patrons without costing the library = staff training issues, budget impact?
  • More to come… I’m sure!

Signage & QR Codes

At the LJ Design Institute last week a question from the audience got me thinking – the question was whether or not using digital signage, specifically LCD panels, were an energy efficient option and a waste reducing option (the idea being less paper would be used to announce programs, etc.)

The hive mind in the room came up with the answer that LED panels would be more energy efficient than LCD, that yes, it would reduce the amount of paper used and that there was a definite hip factor to the application of digital signage in libraries.

It got me thinking about something I heard at the PLA Conference at the Top Tech Tips panel discussion about QR-Codes – these cute squares of connection can be used by owners of smartphones to link to more information. Evidently stores use these, posting them by the front door so customers can connect with sale information or the online version of the store through their phone.

Libraries could make use of these as well for program announcements, posting of hours, board meetings or build them into a program – thinking of something like a scavenger hunt using clues found through the QR-Codes….

For now you can play with QR-Codes using this free QR-Code generator.  Stick one in your email signature, post one on your library’s front door and gauge reaction – as more patrons use smartphones the more potential there is to connect virtually with them.

Welcome to Sustainable Libraries

Welcome to Sustainable Libraries. Libraries + Green/Sustainable Buildings is something I strongly believe in.

Libraries connect communities, provide opportunity for anyone interested and are in just about every community in the country – what better place for people to learn how sustainable building practices can change the world.

My day job involves helping libraries find sustainable support to keep their doors open in the form of funding and people power. So it’s all related for me: Sustainable Libraries are libraries that invest in themselves and their legacy throughout their organization – the facility, community connection, collection, technology and staff.

I hope you’ll join me as we watch and collaborate with libraries around the country who are doing their best for their local and global communities.