September 17, 2017

Library Services

Oculus Virtual Reality Tech Rolls Out in California Libraries

Library shelves have long presented an opportunity for patrons to escape the real world in the pages of a good book. But at libraries all over California, visitors can travel into a whole new reality. Well, a virtual reality, at least.

Participatory Design in Action | The User Experience

Participatory Design (PD) is a method for engaging deeply with users in order to build inclusive, future-oriented, user-centered services. This year I piloted a PD project with a group of four Native American students at Montana State University (MSU) called User Experience with Underrepresented Populations (UXUP). With 650 enrolled Native students, comprising four percent of our student population, this is a growing and important user community for our library.

A Culture of Opportunity | Best Small Library in America 2017

Idaho’s Boundary County Library District is the Best Small Library in America, 2017.

Kansas City Libraries Defend Free Speech in Face of Arrests, Resignations

Update: In a brief trial on Friday, September 8, Kansas City municipal court judge Joseph Locascio found Steve Woolfolk not guilty by on charges of obstruction, interfering with an arrest, and assaulting a police officer. “Justice was done,” said KCPL director Crosby Kemper III in a statement. “The library, like the judge, has consistently expressed surprise that this ever went to trial, that a public event at a public library should result in the indictment of a librarian.”

After Harvey Libraries Reopen, Organizations Step Up

Over a five-day period, Hurricane Harvey devastated the Gulf Coast area of southeastern Texas and parts of Louisiana. More than 50 inches of rain fell, killing at least 66 people, displacing 30,000 others, and causing up to $190 billion in damages. When skies finally cleared at the end of August, libraries’ cleanup efforts began in earnest.

Kansas City’s “Indisposable” Street Photographers | Programs That Pop

The adage “a picture is worth a thousand words” applies to the most recent photography exhibit at the Kansas City Public Library (KCPL), MO: “Indisposable,” which featured photographs taken by homeless patrons showcasing their everyday lives on the street.

Libraries Take Key Roles in IMLS Community Catalyst Grant Projects

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, has awarded 12 organizations Community Catalyst Grants totaling $1,637,271. Libraries are project partners of eight of the 12.

What’s Next | Office Hours

The following cry echoed through the Dokk1 library in Aarhus, Denmark, from participants in the Next Library 2017 conference as a morning icebreaker/creativity exercise: “Yes, we made a mistake!” Mistakes were encouraged and celebrated during the three-and-a-half-day International Festival for library folk in June, intended, the conference website notes, as a “patchwork” of colearning, cocreative, participatory, engaging, pluralistic, and interactive meetings.

Libraries Across America To Celebrate Solar Eclipse on August 21

On Monday, August 21, all eyes—or at least, all those with adequate protection—will be on the first total solar eclipse to cross the country from ocean to ocean since 1918. The path of totality will cross the entire United States from west to east starting at 10:15 a.m. PDT in Pacific Palisades, OR (west of Salem) and ending at 2:48 p.m. EDT in Bulls Bay, SC (north of Charleston). More than 1,000 libraries will hold viewing parties with safe viewing glasses during the event, and imaginative eclipse-themed programs have been happening all summer from Alaska to Maine.

Charlottesville Libraries Weather Violent Protests, Offer Unity

Public and college libraries alike faced challenges and tough choices this weekend in Charlottesville, VA, when clashes between white nationalist demonstrators and counterprotesters from social justice, civil rights, and anti-fascist groups took place on the campus of the University of Virginia and across the city, leaving three dead and 34 injured.