Posts Tagged ‘technology’

Sunday, June 27, 2010

1:30 p.m.

WCC Ballroom B

Moderator – Gregg Silvis, Chair of the LITA Top Tech Trends Committee and Assistant Director for Library Computing Systems, University of Delaware

Panelists

John Blyberg

Assistant Director for Innovation and User Experience, Darien (CT) Library.

http://www.blyberg.net

 

Lorcan Dempsey

Vice President, OCLC Research and Chief Strategist, OCLC.

http://orweblog.oclc.org

 

Jason Griffey

Head of Library Information Technology, University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.

http://www.jasongriffey.net

Pattern Recognition

 

Monique Sendze

Associate Director of IT and Virtual Services, Douglas County (CO) Libraries.

http://www.DouglasCountyLibraries.org

 

Cindi Trainor

Coordinator for Library Technology and Data Services, Eastern Kentucky University Libraries.

http://citegeist.com

 

Joan Frye Williams

Information Technology Consultant.

http://jfwilliams.com

 

Panelists will speak on three types of trends: current, imminent (6-12 months), and long-range (3 years or longer).

Blyberg – Multilevel convergent media.

If we look at the way we consume media now on our various devices, content delivery is not one-dimensional.

Media and information are flowing in the context of what’s happening in the world around us. Ex. – Twitter.

Users (not manufacturers) are the ones who find ways to take advantage of new devices.

In the past convergent devices have been less effective than their component parts. Think about trying to write a term paper on an iPhone. You’re not going to do it, because it’s not the right device to do that kind of work.

With new devices such as the iPad, the quality of the convergent device is greatly improved so we can do things in a much more efficient way.

Convergent devices provide the opportunity for everyday people to connect to something larger.

Dempsey – Mobile

As we begin to provide services for mobile devices, it’s not a matter of mobilizing the existing array of services. It’s about how services can be reconfigured for this environment.

It also offers a way to connect the physical environment and the digital environment. How can we connect users in our physical spaces with new experiences? QR codes offer one possibility.

We can think about services in a new location-based sense. WolfWalk from North Carolina State University offers one example. Users can walk around campus looking through an app on their phones, and historical building information from the library archive is overlaid on what the see. (augmented reality)

Mobilization introduces microcoordination. We coordinate our activities at a much more fine-grained level (because we’re always connected). This changes the way we think about space because people need to meet in a more ad hoc way. We need better ways of microcoordinating and the facilities to do that.

If you have a lot of devices, you can do a lot of creative things. Things move up to the cloud because you want your content to be available on every device wherever you are. You don’t want to be tied to a particular machine.

Griffey

For the majority of the life of the library, the material we bought has been tied to a container, and that container provided the user interface. Increasingly what we purchase is no longer in a container: it is information without an interface. We’re having to purchase or build the interface to interact with the information. Over the last few years we’ve been trying to give people mobile containers because of the increasing use of mobile devices.

The next big drive will be in the area of touch-based interfaces. This is happening because of touch-based phones, the iPad, and the upcoming devices that will follow the iPad. These have changed the way we have interact with things things that contain information.

People who have used iPads describe them in emotional ways. People are emotional about books because we interact with them in a tactile way, and there is a connection when we touch them. Interfaces like the iPad give us that back. Touch-based interfaces give us unmediated access to the content: there is no mouse or pointer between us and the content.

As more touch-based interfaces emerge, that will be the method by which younger generations interact with information.

Sendze

We will see a lot of new devices making their way into libraries. The differences will be in the software and applications.

Libraries are still in the infancy stage of interacting with mobile technology, but the commercial sector is already doing this very well.

Libraries are going to have to adopt a different approach from that used in dealing with library catalogs in terms of having disjointed interfaces. We’re going to move really quickly with the software and applications for mobile platforms in order for us to be relevant.

Users aren’t coming to us because of mobile devices; they’re coming to us because of the experience.

Will there be a time when we don’t have public access computers and provide instead a platform for users to interact and have a library experience? People are coming into the library with their own devices, and they want to access our content. The hardware will not be an issue.

The iPad changed the mobile platform because of the user experience. Will we be able to get to the point in our libraries where we are using mobile devices to interact with patrons? (Ex. circulation transactions)

We need to develop a mobile strategy so we will continue to be relevant to our users.

Trainor

We’re undergoing a transformation of libraries from places where users have to figure out where to go depending upon what they want (ILL, etc.) to places of "You ask for it, we get it.

This has implications for library workflows, tools, and user-centeredness. Services should be user-centered rather that fitting workflows around the tools that we happen to have.

How do you get patrons to things that you don’t own? Some libraries are experimenting with putting MARC records for all e-books offered by their vendors into the catalog. If the library doesn’t own the item a patron needs, there is an option to purchase. Collections are more patron-driven.

Williams

I don’t track technology. I track human behavior, cultural changes, and follow the money. I look around and see what kinds of implications that might have for library technology.

The recently-failed economy was driven centrally and included a lot of lawyers, bankers, and accountants. Local governments seem to be interested in the "creative economy." There is a lot of talk about cities and counties thriving by attracting people in creative disciplines. The model for a creative economy tends to be individualized small business – typically home-based – entrepreneurial, and hyper-local.

How can libraries intersect this particular trend? Libraries are well-positions as incubators for "creatives," because they have great bandwidth, they’re media-rich environments, and they’re already established as meeting places.

There are implications for our workflows around what business we think we’re in, what environment we’re creating, and how we support that technologically.

The biggest challenge right now is to create workspaces that support creativity and innovation with all of its mess and iteration. If our technologies are deployed around discovery and transport, and if we assume that delivery of content is the end of our story, we’re hard-pressed to imagine a workspaces that supports a messy, iterative, studio creative process. But that’s where the money is.

We need to stop being the grocery store and start being the kitchen.

This is not a real change from our current capacity; it’s a change in emphasis. We think our work is done when we deliver content. We don’t provide the tools for people to work People go home and don’t always have the tools to work with the content.

As we design new workspaces, we have to consider the new ways in which people work. It’s not all with perpendicular monitors. The iPhone, iPad, Microsoft Surface, and similar touch-based technologies are even changing lighting requirements. Architects have never even considered these new ways of working.

I see a real problem with how we collect and manage creative content. The way people in creative areas access their content seldom has to do with topical descriptions. We have a lot of technique around how WE find stuff, but that’s not the work that’s going forward, and we need to support that too.

Question from Sendze to Blyberg

How confident are you that we’ll get to a point where things are so platform-independent that they all play well with each other.

Blyberg – I don’t think they have to play well together. Individuals need to find the devices that best fit their lives and create their own information frameworks based upon their needs and interests. That’s why the marketplaces isn’t just iPhone. These devices are just portals into what’s going on in our world.

Griffey

The way people are designing apps for the iPad is starting to take into account the ways in which people work collaboratively.

Williams

3D home fabrication. The line is blurring between information about a thing and the thing. The library world has moved in some disciplines toward collection, distributing, and manipulating shop drawings, CAD files, art. We need new ways to think about, organize, and manage the rights and re-versioning of the things.

In the future we’ll need to know a lot more about how things move from a set of descriptions to the object itself. We’ll need to know more about how that will be managed and retrieved.

Ex. Architects look at shapes. We don’t bring a design sensibility to the way we organize things. We don’t tag by shape. There is room for a new type of information that is a step in the manufacturing flow.

Trainor

Facebook – Anonymity and open-source

As more people (non-techie people) begin using emerging technologies, the conversations around these social tools are changing.

Who is responsible for preserving the new collective knowledge being created online? This content can’t be bought and owned by a single or even multiple libraries. For example, the Facebook terms of service states that contributed content belongs to Facebook. Will we be able to go back and look at this Facebook content in 100 years?

Sendze – Changes in the way IT as a function is delivered.

When technology started coming into libraries (especially 2.0 technologies), there was a shift in what librarianship was going to be. We all had to redefine what it was going to be.

Cloud computing is going to redefine the way we use our back room IT staff. We have situations where entire infrastructures are being hosted in the cloud. A lot of my infrastructure is already in the cloud. My web services are with Amazon. My backups are in the cloud.

IT is going to have to become embedded in the day to day work of the library. They’re no longer going to have to be the back room people.

Griffey

There are currently two main classes of e-readers: e-ink devices such as the Sony Reader, the Kindle, and the Barnes & Noble Nook; and LCD devices such as the iPad.

The prices of e-ink devices (Kindle, Nook, etc.) are plummeting. By this time next year we’ll probably see $50 e-readers.

"How does it change our acquisitions and our materials processing and our circulation when you can purchase an e-reader for under $50 that has the entire western canon on it for free?"

How do you change the model for providing books for an intro to literature class when you can buy a device that has every book the students will read and the content doesn’t cost anything?

At this price point, e-ink devices become almost disposable. At the same time there is a rise in LCD and OLED displays. The new iPhone display is 326 dpi. This is literally better than the quality of most printed magazines. This technology can eliminate some of the problems that people have noted with electronic displays because the quality is literally better than print.

These types of screens will allow us to display things and provide content in ways that were never possible before.

The 2011 iPad will probably have Apple’s new Retina Display. On the low end we will have disposable e-ink devices.

Dempsey

There is a lot of interest in what is currently called the discovery layer. Over the next few years they will change the character of how we look at the library collection. As these services represent as much of what is available as possible (licensed materials, books, digitized materials), they will come to be seen by users as the full library collection. The library collection will be what is available through the discovery layer. This will push the integration of other services. You could also see Google Book material, ILL services, and a variety of other services.

Once you reach the point where these services are part of the library offering, more patron-driven options begin to emerge. You can present a "possible collection" through the discovery layer, and behind that decisions are made about whether to acquire things based on patron demand and discovery.

Blyberg

Open source library systems

If you have something really successful you see instant returns, and you see them fairly quickly. But you get to the point where successes plateau, and everything gets quite a bit harder. At that point you have to decide whether to quit or keep going.

The next 6-12 months is a period of a dip for open source software in 4 areas: technical, logistical, financial, behavioral.

Logistical – A lot of libraries have migrated to open source systems in the last year – so many in fact, that they’re going to have trouble finding support. There are a limited number of support agencies, but this mass exodus from proprietary to open source systems has really overburdened the existing support system.

Technical – The open source alternatives available right now don’t really go toe-to-toe with proprietary alternatives in terms of feature sets. That’s okay in the short term, but in the long term this lack of functionality may be compounded into other problems.

Financial – We’re coming to the end of first- and second-round grant funding for open source implementation, and there’s no guarantee that the money will still be available in the future.

Behavioral – I think that the open source community has a way to go before it reaches the point where it can participate professionally in discussion about what open source is and can be. Ex. A paper critical of open source was leaked last year, and the response from the community was less than professional.

This is sort of a natural process on the way to becoming a significant contributor.

Griffey

4th generation mobile infrastructure will be in place in 3-5 years. 4G will give a minimum of 100 megabits per second to cell phones. It will be like walking around with an ethernet cord in your pocket. We don’t really know yet what we’re going to do with this level of bandwidth, but it gives us an unprecedented ability to send/receive information quickly.

Researcher Masatoshi Ishikawa has developed a scanner that allows high-speed book scans simply by fanning the book pages in front of the camera. When asked about where he thought the technology would be use, Ishikawa replied that it would be use by cell phones.

What kind of world will it be when we have ubiquitous high-speed Internet access coupled with a device for which print is digitally available at any moment? Combine this with Google Translate . . .

Google Translate – Take a picture of words in another language, Google OCRs it, and gives it to you in the language of your choice.

Sendze

Profiling and the death of Internet anonymity

Search engine and other online companies are collection a lot of information about users and doing a lot of data analysis as well as commoditizing it. In contrast, libraries collection a lot of patron information, but we have policies for purging it. We really don’t hold onto patron data. It seems that our users are willingly giving a lot of information to online entities for what the users perceive as their own benefit. We have the same data on our users, but we’re not mining it or using it. I see an Internet that will offers ways to present content to users before they even know exactly what they want. Will this change the way we think about privacy in libraries?

Does the library have a better reputation for protecting privacy than companies?

Our users want us to offer better suggestions. They want us to present content that might be useful to them based on their profile. This could transform the way we look at patron privacy.

Trainor

The era of physical copy scarcity is over. What will be the rare and valuable things in the future?

It’s up to libraries to help provide access to whatever these rare and valuable things will be and to help patrons navigate that landscape.

What is the role of the instruction librarian when a lot of students interact with the library through the website? What is our role when we no longer have face-to-face interactions at all?

Williams

The information industry is evolving in ways that mimic the energy industry. There are interesting relationships between those who supply and those who distribute. Libraries have primarily been involved on the distribution side of information while the supply side has been globalized.

Many libraries are trying to attain clean information systems. But we’re all vulnerable to spills. What is the analogy to an spill? Massive loss of access. Massive data corruption. Government crackdowns after an incident that limits access to information.

Could there be a possibility of war of over preserving the information supply from a strategic partner who controls information that we didn’t create?

Is it possible to position libraries as strategic information reserves?

Blyberg

Two external elements pushing against libraries: Visual content and our access to it; the economy.

We’re going to enter a phase where libraries need to admit that they’re very inefficient. That will make us look at what our overhead is on backend processes. Some of these backend processes can be automated and made much more efficient.

Dempsey

Libraries have spent a lot of time managing the complexity of multiple streams of resources. Systems for bought materials, licensed materials, repositories for digitized materials, etc. This means that there is a lot of time spent on overhead activities and less time on managing the relationships with users.

Users are finding ways to get what they want in CONVENIENT ways.

Perhaps some of the ways libraries manage supply don’t have the same value or relevance because the supply channels are simplifying and users are finding content elsewhere.

There are a variety of areas where the library wants to make sure that their constituency uses information effectively.

Library systems don’t rate, recommend, and relate things in the same ways that consumer systems do. We need better ways of doing this in library systems, because users expect it.

Embedding resources in the environments in which people need them.

Services that connect your workflows to library resources.

Good search optimization techniques.

 

The liveblog for the session is available here.

 

The LITA blog writeup is available here.

 

The video of this session is available here.

 

You can read the American Libraries writeups here:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Top Tech Trends Links

Posted: June 27, 2010 in ala10, LITA, ttt10
Tags: , ,

Sunday, June 27, 2010
1:30 p.m.
WCC Ballroom B

Here are a few things either spoken about directly or alluded to during the Top Tech Trends program at ALA 2010

3D Fabrication
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_fabricator

Augmented Reality
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Augmented_reality
http://www.howstuffworks.com/augmented-reality.htm

Book Flip Scanning
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExW64zOZGoI’

The Dip
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1591841666?tag2=zoometry-20/permissionmarket

Discovery Layer
http://www.librarytechnology.org/discovery.pl

Facebook
http://www.facebook.com

Google Translate for Android
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_j4OkjANKk

iPad
http://www.apple.com/ipad/

iPhone
http://www.apple.com/iphone/

Kindle
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0015T963C/?tag=googhydr-20&hvadid=5671733707&ref=pd_sl_49iwmuxyif_b

Masatoshi Ishikawa
http://www.k2.t.u-tokyo.ac.jp/members/ishikawa/ishikawa-e.html

Nook
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/nook/index.asp

QR Codes
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QR_Code

Retina Display
http://www.apple.com/iphone/features/retina-display.html

Seth Godin
http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/

Sony Reader
http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&categoryId=8198552921644523779

WolfWalk
http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/dli/projects/wolfwalk/
http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/wolfwalk/

The liveblog for the session is available here.

 

The LITA blog writeup is available here.

 

The video of this session is available here.

 

You can read the American Libraries writeups here:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

In considering the iPad, one of my early concerns was the lack of a stylus and handwriting recognition software. I’ve used good versions of these tools before, and I know how powerful they can be. While getting ready to head off to ALA, I decided that I would try a couple of iPad tools. The obligatory Googling led me to the WritePad app and the Pogo Sketch Stylus.

 

I’ve found WritePad to be a very functional application. The handwriting recognition is good – at least with a finger. It’s not so good with the stylus, but I find that to be a fault of the stylus rather than WritePad. More on that later. I would greatly prefer that handwriting recognition be thoughtfully integrated throughout the iPad OS, but Apple obviously doesn’t share my enthusiasm. As it is, handwriting is converted to text within the WritePad app. From there it’s a copy/paste job if you want to move it into another application.

 

Unfortunately, the Pogo Sketch Stylus proved to be a disaster. I bought it expressly for use at this conference, and it was so bad that I left it at home. No point in packing a useless item, right? I’ve struggled with how to describe the Pogo Sketch, and this is what I’ve come up with . . .

 

Remember when you were little and got a nice, new box of Magic Markers? Your pictures had crisp, clean lines, and all was right with the world. Then THAT KID got his hands on them. You know the one: the kid who smashed the markers down on the paper as hard as he could, thus ruining the tips and turning them into a mushy bunch of fibers. That’s what the Pogo Sketch feels like and looks like – a mushy bunch of fibers. Remember how you couldn’t really get a clean line after that kid smashed the marker tips? That’s how the Pogo Sketch responds. My handwriting isn’t the prettiest, but it is completely legible with pen and paper. With this stylus, it becomes almost unreadable. Just like a mushy Magic Marker, you can’t predict where the lines will fall. You wind up with stray marks and marks that don’t line up correctly. Not surprisingly, WritePad can’t really do anything with the resulting characters. I wish I could say that I just need more practice, but I’ve used styli for years. I had a sinking feeling as soon as I saw the tip of the Pogo Sketch, and my fears were confirmed when I actually used it.

 

So you can’t always get what you want. I’m still looking for the optimal combination. WritePad will be fine with the correct stylus, but it would be better if integrated throughout the OS. Pogo Sketch just doesn’t get the job done, so I’m still looking. *sigh* The iPad has such possibilities. Get with the program, Apple.

I finally talked myself into getting a new Mac. I haven’t owned a Mac or even had regular access to a current one for over a decade. I have an upcoming project that will be Mac-based, and I wanted to get a jump start on relearning the operating system. I could really benefit from the purported 10-hour battery life when I’m at conferences. Also, I just wanted to know what it was like to drive a Mac again. Since there were rumors of an upcoming refresh to the MacBook line, I was watching with interest to see what new features would be unveiled. I must admit to being taken aback by the fact that the brand spankin’ new 13” MacBook Pro doesn’t sport one of the new Core i5 or i7 processors that the 15” and 17” received. Most unfortunate, that. But after convincing myself, the next thing was to see if the store actually had one.

So Tuesday morning, after we knew that the things were official, I called the nearest Apple Store (Saddle Creek in Germantown, TN – about an hour and 45 minutes away) to see if they had any in stock. They wouldn’t answer their phone. At this point, I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. After all, new products had just been announced, so perhaps they were slammed with hordes of the Apple faithful all looking for the latest in Mac gadgetry. Since that didn’t work out, I tried chatting online with an Apple store rep. The rep told me that he couldn’t check inventories at individual stores, so my only option was to just keep calling.

I called back later that afternoon and finally found out that they didn’t have any of the new MacBooks, and they didn’t know when they’d be getting them. Well that was a disappointment. Wait, try again another day.

Wednesday. I called Wednesday morning to see if they had received the new MacBooks. Second verse – same as the first verse. Even though the Apple Store at Saddle Creek opens at 10:00 a.m., by 10:30 they still weren’t answering the telephone. Grrrrr. Finally sometime after lunch I was able to talk to a person who told me that they had received the 15” and 17” models, but not the 13”. Try again tomorrow.

Thursday. I called again. Would you believe that an hour after the store opens, they still don’t have anyone answering phones? I should mention here that I didn’t just call once over the last three mornings. I called several times. I should also mention that once selecting the option to speak with a rep, there were no more phone tree menus to navigate. The phone just rang . . . and rang . . . and rang. No one answered. I was annoyed

I started up another chat with an Apple store rep, and I explained the situation. I told her that people at the Saddle Creek store just won’t answer the phone in the morning, and I asked if she could have someone from that store call me. She explained that she couldn’t, but then gave me temporary hope by asking if I was trying to check inventory at the store. I said, “yes,” and she replied, “One moment please.” For a moment hopes were high. I thought I had happened upon someone at Apple who actually knew how to access their online inventory system and who would be able to give me the information I needed. As I said, hopes were high – for a moment. Then she came back and said that I’d just have to call the store.

So . . . about three hours after the store opened I finally got someone to answer the phone. She told me that they did indeed have the 13” MacBook Pro I wanted, and I asked if she could set one aside for me to pick up later that day. She told me to go to reserve.apple.com, pick out what I wanted, and select the Saddle Creek store as the pickup location. When I got back to the office, I tried. Imagine my surprise when I found that they website she provided actually just redirected me to the iPhone page. Double grrrrr.

Back to Apple chat. I explained the situation to the next chat rep. He said, “Just a moment and let me prepare a custom URL for you.” He hit me with a URL that directed me to the Saddle Creek store. I worked my way through the form only to find out that it merely allowed me to make a shopping reservation. It didn’t actually let me select a product. I explained to the rep that his URL wasn’t allowing me to actually make the reservation that the store rep said I could make. I also explained that I didn’t want to drive an hour and a half only to find out that all of the computers had been sold. Another “One moment please” followed by “I’m sorry, but you can’t reserve items online.”

I was irked. The rep cheerfully asked, “Why not take advantage of free shipping by ordering from Apple’s online store?” I replied that the online store – even when I asked on Tuesday – would not be able to get the product to me before I left town for a conference.

Ultimately I wound up just risking it, and fortunately the store still had them in stock when arrived. But it left me wondering, “If service is this poor when I’m just trying to purchase a product, how bad is the ‘service after the sale’? “

Not answering the phone during morning business hours for three successive days.
Giving misinformation during a phone call.
Offering no way to hold an item for a customer driving an hour and a half just to get to your store.

It’s interesting to note that my really dedicated Apple friends all rave about how wonderful Apple’s service is, and I’ve read a couple of articles about their highly ranked service. If the Apple Store at Saddle Creek in Germantown is any sort of indication though, I’m not looking forward to much in the way of service.

As always, the Top Tech Trends discussion was lively, and people contributed a lot of information to the live blog via links. Here is a compilation of links from the live chat in chronological order. In some cases, if it didn’t appear that the link went to the correct place, I tried to track down the site that I thought the user meant. I’ve also supplemented with a few links about the panelists.

 

To view the full live blog and Twitter coverage from top Tech Trends, visit the LITA blog.

 

Amanda Etches-Johnson

Blog without a Library

http://twitter.com/etches

 

Jason Griffey

Jason Griffey dot Net

Pattern Recognition

http://www.twitter.com/griffey

 

Joe Murphy

http://twitter.com/libraryfuture

 

Lauren Pressley

Lauren’s Library Blog

http://twitter.com/laurenpressley

 

David Walker

David Walker’s Website

 

LITA Blog

http://litablog.org/

 

Top Tech Trends Midwinter 2010 on Ustream

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/midwinter-2010-discussion-group

 

Baylor University – Library Resources for Mobile Devices

http://researchguides.baylor.edu/library_resources_mobile_devices

 

Usabilla

http://usabilla.com/

 

CrazyEgg

http://crazyegg.com/

 

Top Tech Trends Twitter Stream

http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%23alamwttt

 

FourSquare

http://foursquare.com/

 

Horizon Project

http://www.nmc.org/horizon

 

2010 Horizon Report – web

http://wp.nmc.org/horizon2010/

 

2010 Horizon Report – PDF

http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2010-Horizon-Report.pdf

 

Augmented Reality Example for Android

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b64_16K2e08

 

Harper County Public Library Mobile App

http://www.hcplonline.info/hcplmobile/

 

National Library of Medicine Mobile Apps

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/mobile/

 

Copia: a social, e-reading experience

http://www.thecopia.com/

 

LibraryThing iPhone App

http://www.librarything.com/blog/2010/01/local-books-iphone-application.php

 

Blio – free eReader software

http://blioreader.com/

 

Article: Singularity Proponent Ray Kurzweil Reinvents the Book, Again

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/12/blio-ray-kurzweil-book/

 

Smell of Books

http://smellofbooks.com/

 

Article: The Strange Case of Academic Libraries and E-Books Nobody Reads

http://www.teleread.org/2010/01/07/the-strange-case-of-academic-libraries-and-e-books-nobody-reads/

 

Article: New Study Documents Epidemic of Online Book Piracy

http://www.publishers.org/main/PressCenter/Archicves/2010_January/EpidemicofOnlineBookPiracy.htm

 

Online Review Form for Top Tech Trends Session

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/F5R7W7V

 

Other Top Tech Trends writeups from around the net.

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: Top Tech Trends Panel Focuses on End Users and Ebooks

 

Market Intelligence for Librarians: Top Tech Trends from ALA’s Midwinter Meeting

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: LITA Reboots Top Tech Trends Panel

 

Krafty Librarian: LITA Top Technology Trends

This time around LITA’s Top Tech Trends featured an entirely new set of speakers who had never appeared on this panel before.

 

AMANDA ETCHES-JOHNSON

User Experience Librarian

McMaster University

 

JASON GRIFFEY

Head of Library Information Technology

University of Tennessee, Chattanooga

 

JOE MURPHY

Science Librarian

Yale University

 

LAUREN PRESSLEY

Instructional Design Librarian

Wake Forest University

 

DAVID WALKER

Web Services Librarian

California State University System

 

The discussion was moderated by Top Tech Trends chair, Gregg Silvis.

 

To view the live blog transcript from Top Tech Trends – ALA Midwinter 2010, visit

http://litablog.org/2010/01/alamwttt/.

 

David Walker

We need a mega-search that goes beyond Google Scholar and takes advantage of link resolvers – a sort of next-gen federated search.  – working to craft something that is unique to your library.

How do you give access to hundreds of databases that libraries subscribe to?

As more content is brought together, new systems will provide greater/better access.

Any tool that addresses a fundamental problem for libraries will  have great penetration.

Because data lives in silos, searching means going to silos. RSS feeds means going to silos. How do we get  a unified mobile interface?

Vendors are currently engaged in a numbers race. Who has the most journals? Who has the most content?

We need to be able to pull data out of vendor silos and bring it together in a single service. Once we do that, we can add services on top of a single data stream.

Why aren’t library consortia coming together to build their own discovery systems rather than leaving this to the vendors?

 

Are libraries giving up more control to the cloud?

 

Amanda Etches-Johnson – Some institutions don’t have federated search! What improvements will we see from it?

 

David Walker – Federated searches level the playing field. It creates a better search, allows faceted browsing.

 

Amanda Etches Johnson – 2009 buzzwords: user experience. One of the problems is that no one can agree on what it means.

In the user experience design world, people are talking about how it makes users feel.

Mobile interfaces are stripped down. You don’t have time, bandwidth, or real estate for fancy design.

Users are seeking out mobile interfaces – not just on mobile devices, but also on regular screens.  Need for speed!

What we do for mobile devices is really going to impact web design and what we do for large-screen formatting.

Automated usability testing is up and coming. Subscription-based options for doing usability, but this doesn’t replace usability professionals! Check out http://usabilla.com/.

Who is responsible for developing the user interface experience? Does the vendor do it? Does each institution do it?

 

An interesting thought emerged from discussions around the table and from audience-submitted comments. How exactly do we measure the user experience? User experience quality is hard to measure, but we still need to be having the conversations. It was noted that currently most user experience research is coming from outside libraries.

 

Lauren Pressley – Different types of groups expect different things from us.

 

Jason Griffey – Currently building a new library at UT Chattanooga. They’ve spent a lot of time thinking about physical usability and overall usability of the structure.

 

How do you pair this with online usability and user experience across services? Twitterer memclaughlin notes that website design should connect with physical library design.

 

Amanda – Literature talks about how to develop a more holistic approach. Be cognizant that there are other elements to consider.

 

Joe Murphy – We have recently seen near-universal mobile adoption from all patron groups.

The changes are coming from user expectations. Small downloadable apps for smartphones.

SMS is the oldest, strongest, and most flexible mobile app. It’s more than just a communication tool. It’s also a research tool.

Use of SMS for reference has really taken off, but just because it’s a new environment doesn’t mean that it changes core values of reference and libraries.

For some users, the only reason that print is relevant is when it’s not available electronically.

Mobile technology is changing our opinions about what is acceptable in libraries. Do our libraries even have the cell phone signal strength to support the technology?

Location-based gaming is up and coming. How do we manage it, and how do we leverage it? There can be rewards for using location-based services such as waiving fines or other, less traditional options.

Twitter became a standard in 2009. Now that it’s a standard libraries are reacting to it in a different way. It’s a platform for services. Some user groups may never use Twitter, but that shouldn’t stop us from using it to engage other groups.

The ability to be continually flexible is very demanding!

Mobile technology does not change the soul of libraries.

 

David Walker – What do smaller libraries do? What should they be focusing on?

Joe Murphy – If we spend more time prepping for technologies and services, what suffers? How do we balance serving our multiple constituencies?

We have to figure out the priorities for future relevance. We have to be ready for the next couple of years in addition to maintaining traditional strengths.

 

Lauren Pressley – Augmented reality  – blending virtual data with the real world

Augmented reality combines real and virtual data in a way that happens in real time with a 3d nature.

The extra data helps people gather more meaning from what they’re seeing.

As an example, consider the instant replay of a hockey game. You can see a virtual line that indicates the path that the puck traveled. You don’t actually see the line, but it helps you better understand what happened during play.

 

Greater potential for augmented reality games?

2010 Horizon Report predicts impact of augmented reality in education.

Augmented reality helps organizations/individuals embed contextual information.

Check out WolfWalk from NCSU for an example using historical pictures from digital collections.

 

Library applications? Imagine a tool for the periodicals section – tutorials pop up to help users at point of need. Or how about a pop-up that helps users visualize and maybe even narrow in on call numbers when they’re searching the stacks?

And a suggestion from Twitterer jaimebc: When you walk into the library an augmented reality app could give you information on award winners and best sellers.

 

David W. – Do you see libraries taking ownership of that? Does the public library take ownership of the city?

 

Ideally – an application that allows users to plug their own data into it. Crowdsourcing again.

 

By layering groups of historical photos, users could walk down Main Street and see what it looked like in the 1850s, 1870s, 1900s, 1920s, etc.

 

Jason G. – The unique integration of archival materials. Libraries have an opportunity to use archives as teaching/training tools as well as interesting tools for the community.

 

David W. – As you browse the stacks, people miss part of the collection if it’s back on a server or in archives. Augmented reality could fill in those gaps.

 

Jason Griffey – 2009 was the year of the iPhone App Store.

App store opened in 2008. By January 2009, 500,000,000 apps had been downloaded. App downloads are now into the billions.

The growth has been unlike anything the computer world has ever seen.

Given the popularity of the app store, pretty much every other cell phone manufacture is getting on the bandwagon.

With all of these apps though, there are only a handful that are library-specific.

 

Jason predicts that 2010 will be the year the app dies because of HTML 5 and CSS 3.

HTML5 allows for offline storage. You can store locally using just HTML 5. Native audio and video support can reduce the need for Flash. It supports Canvas – online drawing.

If you’re thinking about writing an app, think about writing it in web standards.

Jason notes that about 95-96 % of what he currently does can be done in a browser.

New standards will bring really rich app-like experiences inside a browser.

 

A couple of Twitterers pointed out the need to develop on platforms besides just the iPhone. Perhaps these new web standards are the way to level the playing field on development.

 

Group topic – The Reinvention of the Book

Moderator Gregg Silvis brought out a 10-year old Rocket e-book and an Amazon Kindle. Form factor is surprisingly similar. In fact, several Twitterers noted that the two devices are "frighteningly" similar.

 

Jason – Thinks that the e-book as a hardware device is dying. Sites like Copia, Blio, and multifunction devices such as the (upcoming) Apple tablet may contribute to this. Copia will allow users to interact in ways such as social annotation. Blio allows instructors to embed quizzes in the text.

 

Lauren – The issue of ownership with e-books is different. For many people, reading is a solitary experience that individuals share with the author.

The concept of ownership with e-books is different.

How much will publishers move to a format that libraries feel comfortable with?

 

Joe – I don’t see e-book devices having a place in a library. The focus should be on content.

I can’t get books from the library on my iPhone. I’m buying it through the Kindle app on my iPhone.

For some of us, our iPhone can be our everything device.

The Twitter world has really changed my expectations of reading.

 

I want to be able to interact with the text.

 

Amanda – Devices are not the future. We have a lot of subscriptions that are read on computer screens.

 

David – Undergrads are going to very specific online journals because it’s easy and convenient. Sometimes they would actually be better served by going to the catalog and finding a book with a more general treatment of the topic.

E-book licensing isn’t friendly to smaller institutions.

If e-books were as accessible as journal articles, would that change undergraduate research behavior?

 

Jason – Publishers should pay attention to the recording industry and learn that DRM only hurt music sales. No consumer likes DRM.

 

Audience  and Twitter comments – A lot of users just don’t have access to laptops and mobile devices. Perhaps they can’t afford them. Perhaps their network infrastructure can’t support them. Where do libraries come into play? Over the years, libraries have been among the first to place technology in the hands of users. Do libraries have a role to play with e-book readers?

 

Another online commenter pointed out that even when people cannot afford some things, they often have cell phones, Playstations, Wiis, etc.

 

Other Top Tech Trends writeups from around the net.

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: Top Tech Trends Panel Focuses on End Users and Ebooks

 

Market Intelligence for Librarians: Top Tech Trends from ALA’s Midwinter Meeting

 

Library Journal: ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting: LITA Reboots Top Tech Trends Panel

 

Krafty Librarian: LITA Top Technology Trends

I am conducting two anonymous surveys to gather information from libraries and library users regarding the use of e-books, e-book readers, and e-book software on portable devices such as smartphones. The information gathered will be used to consider ways in which libraries acquire and support e-books and how library users interact with the library in using e-books. The results of the survey will be presented during the International Conference on the Book at the University of Edinburgh later this year.

I am trying to gather data from as many library employees and users of e-books/e-readers as possible, so please consider completing one of the surveys listed below. If you are a library employee AND a reader of e-books, please consider filling out both surveys.

Survey for users of e-books, e-book hardware, and e-book software:
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=EHFSuOFp_2fXK_2f_2bjYZ3SI9ZA_3d_3d

Survey for library employees:
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=RNCPWl326UK7Y8oPB2af0A_3d_3d

This study has been reviewed by The University of Mississippi’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB has determined that this study fulfills the human research subject protections obligations required by state and federal law and University policies. If you have any questions, concerns, or reports regarding your rights as a participant of research, please contact the IRB at (662) 915-7482.