New mobile hotspot users attend a launch event at New York Public Library’s Mott Haven branch.

Bridging the Tech Gap

September 11, 2015

For years, libraries have helped bridge the digital divide by offering internet access at brick-and-mortar branches. Many are expanding this mission by offering patrons mobile Wi-Fi hotspots for checkout. New York City launched a program this year that provides 10,000 mobile hotspots to patrons across three library systems, and in 2014, Chicago Public Library rolled … Continue reading Bridging the Tech Gap


SirsiDynix booth at ALA 2015 Annual Conference and Exhibition

A Look at Tech

July 23, 2015

One current trend in library technology aims to improve the engagement of patrons with libraries or to provide tools to help users work more effectively. In many respects, the technologies on display reinforced the theme of the “Library Systems Report 2015,” operationalizing the innovations brewing in recent years, including the increased adoption of Semantic Web technologies … Continue reading A Look at Tech


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Left to Our Devices

July 22, 2014

Moorefield-Lang, a former school librarian who is now education and applied social sciences librarian at Virginia Tech, was joined by Katherine Messier, managing director at Johnston, Rhode Island–based Mobile Beacon, a nonprofit that provides broadband service to libraries and other nonprofits; Bohyun Kim, digital access librarian at Florida International University Medical Library in Miami; and … Continue reading Left to Our Devices


Karen Muller

Continuous Learning

November 26, 2013

Funds shift, coworkers leave, a new director arrives. Such unexpected job changes may require you to learn a new skill—fast. In my experience, I feel as though I can learn nearly anything from books. Even if I need to take a class, watch a webinar, or participate in a hands-on demonstration, reading about a topic … Continue reading Continuous Learning


Don’t Dumb Down

September 24, 2013

People’s behavior on smartphones, however, increasingly challenged this assumption. Web designer and developer Luke Wroblewski classified mobile usage into the following four interaction types on page 50 of his book Mobile First (A Book Apart, 2011): Lookup/Find (urgent info, local): I need an answer to something now (frequently related to my current location in the … Continue reading Don’t Dumb Down


40 Great Apps for Mobile Reference and Outreach

July 1, 2013

More than 200 conference-goers packed the small room booked for the session, with many peering through the doorway and sitting on the floor. During their presentation, branch manager Richard Le and adult services librarian Mel Gooch, both from San Francisco Public Library, shared what they have found to be dozens of apps that provide innovative … Continue reading 40 Great Apps for Mobile Reference and Outreach