CiL presentations on Innovation and Open Education Resources

On Tuesday, I presented without slides during a sunrise session on innovation with Jill Hurst-Wahl and James King. Purposefully presenting without slides for the first time in probably 15 years (dating back to high school, yes),  I very briefly spoke about Kansas libraries and the continued innovation that goes on there, because (at least from my perspective) the Kansas library community is open to sharing, collaborating, and working together on initiatives, because many libraries have limited staff, time, financial resources, and collections. This has allowed for a lot of innovation to happen in consortias, open source software deployment, statewide platforms, and ebooks.

At the end of that same day, I presented on Open Educational Resources for the School Librarian as part of the school libraries track. The slides are embedded below. All presentation resources are available here. Gary Price also presented in the session on the same topic, focusing on open web resources and their untapped wealth of potential for educational use. All of his great resources are available on his presentation website. There is huge potential for open education resources to be used at all levels of education (K12; College; Self-Education).

Ms. Kansas Librarian Goes to Capitol Hill

As I referenced in my earlier notes post, Michael, Patrick and I went down to Capitol Hill for the Broadband for America meeting.

America’s New National Pastime: The Innovative and Competitive Internet Marketplace, Capitol Hill 10 April 2013

I sat through the different presentations, at the same time recalling Jessamyn West’s Without A Net: Librarians Bridging the Digital Divide book, as well as a presentation on digital inequality I had put together for a grad school class a couple of years ago. Not much had changed on the reasons for the digital divide that were in Jessamyn’s book and from information I did on the presentation.

Panelists pushed for continued light regulation of the broadband infrastructure, counter to the requests of net neutrality groups. The panelists finished, and I listened to different staffers, policy analysts, and other members of the audience ask questions.

The questions all seemed to be around the spectrum (frequency) issue. That more spectrum needed to be freed. Fine, but what about the people issue? The access and adoption issues?

I started raising my hand, without a complete question in my hand, and kept getting passed over, partially because I was hidden behind a projector, I think. Finally, the moderator said there was time for one more question. I desperately raised my hand, feeling quite silly. Michael and Patrick finally got the moderator’s attention and I opened my mouth to speak, and the nerves hit.

But I tried to be coherrent. I think I mentioned I was a librarian from Kansas, who while interested in the spectrum issues and other technological issues, what about the relevance and skills reasons for non-adoption of the Internet? And the role libraries were playing in dealing with those issues. And I wondered if the panelists had heard of the EveryoneOn and Connect2Compete programs? I think there were other things I said, but that was the important part.

Three panelists quickly responded to the question. One was obviously aware of the programs I referenced, and knew all about libraries and their important role in this issue (he’d had connections with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation at one point), but the other two panelists answers were disappointing and somewhat irrelevant, at least from my perspective of things. (I was honestly giddy at that point the question had been answered and wasn’t fully paying attention to what they were saying.)

Afterward, several people said thank you for the question, and I ended up speaking to a staffer from one of my Senator’s offices about technology policy and technology innovation in Kansas, including the Google Fiber implementation in the Kansas City metro area.

It was an incredible experience and goes to show that if you stay alert, and are willing to jump on opportunities that may seem scary or out of reach or out of your element, and yet take a risk anyway, you never know what will happen.

I noticed a couple of things during the meeting. I hate to bring up gender issues, but I noticed that the panel was all men. I know the tech-industry is still heavily male-dominated, but are there honestly no women experts in broadband Internet policy? It’s an honest question.

And during the question period, until I was able to ask my question, all the askers were men. Again, why was this? I’ve never been to a Hill meeting like this before, obviously, but as an obvious DC and political outsider, even with my undergrad degree in political science, this frankly bothered me, especially on such a current, future, global, economic, and critical issue such as broadband policy.

Finally, libraries DO play a critical role in the continued national broadband policy discussion and implementation.

Libraries are learning centers in their communities for all community members, especially in more rural or lower income areas where broadband access is limited, unaffordable, or not available at all (those areas without broadband access still exist, even near the Google Fiber implementation area in the KC Metro area). Libraries are places where people can learn how to use computers and the Internet, apply for jobs, benefits, legal and government services, research health conditions, take online classes, connect with family and friends, and create content. But all of these activities require broadband access.

And as Dr. Ehrlich stated during his section, “The web has become an avatar of markets. It is a representation of markets. To be in the market of the world is to be on the web. The economic benefit we get from broadband is going to depend on the ubiquity of access to it.”

If communities and citizens are to participate in this world market, they must be on the web, and if citizens are still going to struggle to get connected to the web because they don’t understand why they need to be online, they don’t have access to the technology to be online (don’t own an Internet-enabled device), or they don’t have the skillsets to use the Internet, how are they going to compete in this world market? How can they be reached? The library is usually the one institution present in most communities and neighborhoods in the country, and librarians are already working to help people use the Internet and show them its value in daily life.

I hope the Broadband for America group and other entities working on increasing broadband access in the United States will remember to keep libraries in the conversation. I’m glad I was able to be a part of the larger conversation today.

Broadband for America meeting notes

Wednesday morning of the conference, Michael Sauers, Patrick Sweeney and I took off for Capitol Hill to attend the Broadband of America meeting briefing, “America’s New National Pastime: The Innovative and Competitive Internet Marketplace” on Capitol Hill in one of the House Buildings.

Michael has more notes over on his blog, as well as pictures from the event. Thanks to Patrick for getting the word out to the #cildc twitter stream on Saturday about this!


Rich Galen

Technology has changed a lot since Rich Galen came to Washington. Modern computer systems brought ability to deal with constituents in a far more meaningful way.

Former Senator John Sununu

BB for america is an organization that is an organization for sound BB deployment and access.

Motivation is simple: deployment for high speed, quality deployment. Important economically, national security. Today high dependency on high speed broadband in the future.

Members are state based community organizations, manufactures of telecom industry, healthcare, other stakeholders.

US is really a bb success story. Bb is backbone of US success, building vibrant economy.

80 million BB subscribes, 200 million wireless subscribers.

US leads in 4G LTE deployment.

WWW Index report — US ranks 2.

Policy is why US is leading. Light regulatory touch has helped this. Started back in the Clinton admin. private investment in this infratustrature is key to its strength and success in our economy.

Predictable, simple legal framework for encouraging electronic commerce. Approach that has been sustained through FCC in national broadband plan. Internet should be fueled by private sector innovation and investment.

Economic dollars at stake? Back to 1996, Over $1 trillion invested in state of the art BB networks.

During most recent economic downturn, since 2008, over 250 billion has been invested in high speed broadband networks. Job creation. Meaningful investment into meaningful job creation. in 2011, wired/wireless investment increased 24%.

The policies that have served us well in the 1990s and 2000s that light regulatory touch needs to continue to happen.

Rob Atkinson, President, The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation

“The Whole Picture: Where America’s Broadband Networks Really Stand”

Why does this matter? debates abt US BB policy are premised on whether the US broadband system is performing well compared to other nations.

Four dimensions about BB Policy:

  • Deployment: what share of postal addresses does the network cover
  • Adoption: What share of households subscribe
  • Performance: Speed/Download speed
  • Price: cost to use service

Deployment: 3rd highest rate of wired intermodal in the world

  • 96.3 percent have access to some form of wired bb
  • 96% have access to cable modem….
  • 4% who don’t have
  • OECD Fiber (we don’t lead in Fiber deployment) Japan/Korea have dense populations. Smaller countries.

Adoption: The US ranks 15 of 33 OECD nations on adoption.

  • 88.6% adoption by US computer-owning homes
  • It’s that people don’t have computers….
  • Reasons for non adoption: Pew survey stats: availability; price no computer; usability; relevance (people don’t get why they need the Internet)
  • America leads the world in adoption.
  • Compared to other nations, we have a larger percentage of lower income populations.


  • Speed Overall: 22nd in speed. 29.6 mBps peak rate.
  • American speeds are improving faster than world-leading speeds.
  • Speed: 6th in OECD in % of users w connections faster than 10 MBps

Price: entry level pricing: 2nd lowest in OECD

  • The US rank in prices for higher speed is lower [but what can you really do on Low speed internet]
  • US broadband prices are progressive.
  • Factors for price — not excess process: US bb providers are less profitable than EU15 providers.
  • low price high speed nations have committed heavy subsidies to private firms
  • (but adoption rate, at least in japan isn’t different than us)
  • Factors for high costs: 27th lowest rate of urbanicity
  • costs of bb are mbps/miles

Conclusions: is a facilities based deployment leaders in cable, fiber, and LTE & others…..


  • internet engagement, digital literacy, computer ownership
  • subsidy programs for poor and rural residents, following connect for america model
  • use of smart auctions to locate subsidies (more spectrum)
  • spectrum remains scarce due to govt over allocation

Larry Irving (Irving Info Group strategic planning group):

Lifeline phones.

digital divide

2003 — only 15% were on bb on home.

August 2012: 94% online; 74% on broadband.

Citizens on tribal lands, rural areas, and minorities are much less likely to have broadband access.

Less than 2% take Internet from dialup today.

Latinos and blacks are much more likely to depend on mobile

76% latinos; 70% blacks; 60% whites

Trend of mobile use — strong in younger minorities. If you didn’t start with a wired laptop, would you get broadband. There’s been a paradigm shift people aren’t looking. Young people aren’t getting wired phones any more. Just mobiles.

Why aren’t we giving kids mobile devices? iPhones, iPads.

Recipe: lets meet people where they are instead of dragging them where they need to be.

  1. 1. How are we going to get bb tech/wired/wireless into where it isn’t?
  2. 2. How are we going to get web more relevant to more americans?
  3. 3. More spectrum available
  4. 4. Fed govt users off spectrum so it is used for private use.
  5. 5. National Info infrastructure for action (trying to figure out what the Internet was going to be)

Classic ways in the past for action

  1. 1. private sector investment/competition
  2. 2. univ service
  3. 3. promoting innovation/application
  4. 4. eseemless use and interaction
  5. 5. security
  6. 6. improving management of freq. spectrum

We’re at an inflection point. We can continue to drive this vision on classic principles, and go in the wrong direction, or…. Go somewhere else?

Hance Haney — Discovery Institute, Democracy and Technology Program

Couldn’t follow this guy. it was a written piece that was read. I know it was important information, but the presentation style/writing difference made a difference trying to process what he was saying/reading.

Conclusions: industry dictated by moore’s law, gilder’s law. therefore, it only gets easier to deploy new tech, new devices, etc. the problem: legacy regulation: federal, state level (pre-existing tech). AT&T trial runs to next gen services to see the new regulations that are needed.

Ev Ehrlich. Former undersecretary for commerce on Clinton

econ benefits of broadband

Moore’s Law outcomes….

3rd one he mentioned: Changes way things are organized to production.

Ability to track info within firms.

The web has become an avatar of markets. It is a representation of markets. To be in the market of the world is to be on the web.

The economic benefit we get from broadband is going to depend on the ubiquity of access to it.

When digital divide was popularized by larry Irving and ev ehrlich, it was about the fear of those getting shut out, the new problem solving, cognition, reference, skills that are inherent in the bb world. more opportunity to networks, passport to economic citizenship around the globe.

Very tempting to say hobby farm

Let consumers drive development. many people don’t need 100mb delivered to their home. many people don’t want a wired connection. wireless fits their lifestyle.

Q&A — just listened — lots of questions about the spectrum issues

This requires a separate blog post (that I’ll write on the plane), but I was able to ask a question at the very end of the session about libraries’ role in the relevance and skills factors for lack of broadband adoption, as well as mention the EveryoneOn and Connect2Compete programs. The responses from the panel were varied (see Michael’s notes for those), but it still was quite thrilling to speak up on behalf of libraries.

Becoming TechCentral: Cleveland Public Library

Anastasia Diamond-Ortiz, Knowledge Manager

CJ Lynce, Tech Central Manager

Olivia Hoge, Lorain Branch Manager

Cleveland Public LIbrary

Connect kit. — someone in the audience is going to play with one during the presentation.

Tech Central at the Cleveland Public Library is a downtown destination.

Downtown library had absolute chaos before tech central.

60 public computers in 2 buildings/9 locations and 2 sign-up stations = chaos

TechCentral was developed as a way to come out of this chaos.

Different use cases for each space — developed personas to understand users in different zones.

Providing a wide-range of tech in a shared space.

1. Learning space: expert help in a friendly setting, not in a small space or classroom style. Learner & teacher on equal footing. Smartboard station in that area. Small informal and formal instruction happening there.

2. Play space: where people could touch and play with Kindles, 3D printing, iPads, and others. Space to delight their users, and show them the latest and greatest. Try something new!

3. Connect space

4. Create space: adaptive stations, Mac and Linux machines

5. Getting things done: resume, check email, job applications. Chunk of time and a robust computer to actually do this. Get out of people’s way and give them time and space to work.

Tech Central is not just a place, a space. It’s a mantra to provide service to people. Right team for the job. Recruited people who embodied the spirit of tech central. Curious, committed people work there.

Tech Toy Box — lending device program.

People want to learn how to use these devices.

myCloud: personalized devices that can be checked out.

One of the first services provided in Tech Central when it opened was 3D printing. 5 cents a gram of the plastic. No one piece printed has been more than $5. Most cost between 1-3. Creating objects to print isn’t easy (3D Cad, Autodesk, etc)

Thingiverse — Wikipedia of stuff

They want to use this experience to inspire people to learn and design their own 3D models. Minecraft gateway, possibly.

Maker Kit — kids can use these to create things.

Learning about circuits.

Monotron device.

Maker Labs: so patrons can create something and have a takeaway at the end of the day.

First session? Custom 3D cookie cutters ( — patrons were helping each other, creation AND collaboration going on!

Panaromic image makers (still images/video)

VIdeo slideshows.


Font making labs

Patrons at all skill levels can participate in these labs.

Digital graffiti art on a wall in the library: Need: Laptop; projector; web camera; laser pointer

Laser Tag 2.0 instructions

Cleveland Mini Maker Faire

Tech Toy Box v3 —

In House Use Devices (Id left with staff members; 3 hrs usage)

When you check out tier 1 devices, you’ll get points that will allow you to check out tier 2 devices, and eventually check out tiered at-home checkouts. Levels used to develop trust with patrons and the library.

Tier 1: SD Video cameras; gps units — small, simple devices

Tier 2: eReaders

Tier 3: Internet tablets

Learning how the patrons create is amazing.

Library is going to see how this roll-out works.

Future programs: electronics soldering lab; Programming with Rapsberry Pi & Ruby language.

Future space: dedicated creative space. Current space not working out.

Ex. Ability to Record music using library-provided instruments & recording equipment? WOW! Many people don’t have instruments in their house anymore

Library wants to replicate tech central idea into various branches in the library system, in different areas.

Are there things people can’t print? Library policy, certain objects won’t be printed.

Libraries, Archives, & Museums: Collaboration on a Large Scale

Michael Edson, Director, Web & New Media Strategy, Office of the CIO, Smithsonian

You can tell a lot about someone by what they choose to measure…and what they measure with.

Willy Sutton.

Where the value is today in society, cultural institutions, etc.

Most of civic institutions instituted success in the mid 20th century. New physics of dreaming, global value creation, but we haven’t recrafted our dreams.

Chandra project. 

National Gallery of Art, -1% growth in attendance over last 33 years. How you feel about this depends on what you think your mission is and how you think about scale. But either way — there’s a lot of room at the top.

Hypothetical Projcet X, starts where the National Gallery of Art started, but grows at 10% a year for 33 years.

A global “audience” of collaborators (individuals, learners, fans, community) of this scale was not imaginable” 33 years ago. But it is now.

108.4 million viewers for 2013 Super Bowl. 1.3 Billion views of Gangnam Style.

TED reached its billionth video view!

Wikipedia 1.7 billion edits.

Trove, 39398 text corrections, by volunteers, today

Zooniverse, almost 800K taking part worldwide: people exploring science. Crowdsourcing climate change from several centuries possible now, based on ship logs.

OpenStreet Map — 900K registered users; contributed 14 million edits; 1.6 billion locations(?)

Kickstarter — all kinds of projects.

Room to Read — 1600 schools; 15K librarians; 10 million books; 9 million checkouts; 7.5 million children.

Many of these small groups get a lot of work done at scale.

We love our museums, libraries, and archives. We need them to be super successful… by:

  • Put the tools of knowledge creation into more hands
  • Share the joy & meaning of artistic and culture exploration with MORE citizens
  • Deepen engagement w the challenges that face our species.
  • nurture the habits of civil and sustainable society

Can this happen quickly enough?

If you’re only counting stuff, staff, checkouts, it’s not enough. If the library checkout is the standard of excellence, success isn’t possible.

Scale can be confusing.

There are more powerful ways of accomplishing museum mission than getting people through the doors.

Larry Page interview in Wired, 1000 percent improvement requires exploring the edges, asking different questions, looking at problems.

Thinking about libraries beyond big systems, door counts, and collection, and that:

  • Every library a standalone [one-off].
  • Every transaction is single event [one-off].
  • Library: what’s in it for me? [city council; governing body questions]
  • What’s the ask? [leaving something behind; research; mentoring; cognitive surplus; effort]
    • Librarians kinda pride themselves on staying out of their patron’s lives.
  • Trust is a check you’ve got to cash.

How do you get to scale?

  • Start global by default; smart people all over the world are interested in a projet and will contribute
  • Open by default [unnecessary property restrictions can suffocate a project]
  • participatory by default
  • rethink who can contribute
  • rethink the value-creation arrows
  • don’t collaborate: solve big problems [collaborate to get big work done]

GLAMS can go to 11: And when they do, new opportunities present themselves…

How can people take collaboration to a global level? It’s in the ASK. The power of the network.

Ex.: David Lee King, TSCPL: His blog posts, video, podcasts, he puts stuff online at no extra cost. Very simple. Just Internet by default & global by default and using platforms everyone could use.

If we believe in the open web, libraries and museums and civic institutions — who already have the public’s trust to archive historical data — we may need to create open portals for more digital content to be shared and stored, as businesses are shuttering services.

Scale has a z axis, as well, in depth. How do you measure the depth of an interaction, a person-to person, artwork to viewer?

Zoo visits were about learning.

Merete Sanderhoff (@msanderhoff), Researcher/Project manager, Statens Museum for Kunst (SMK) via video & Skype

Art Museums. Platform with art images + stream of comments on Twitter. Take a picture of an painting/object in a museum. Leave comments, questions, links.

Why Twitter as platform? democratic; multilingual. production is manageable. reactivate existing content. dynamically updated.

Open licenses adopted by the museums.

What has been learned? people are adopting the open licenses. users appreciate the democratic approach. they don’t participate. Curatorial voice, comments, add value, looking down at screen, not at artwork. learning curve for the technology. People may not want to use mobile while in a museum. People may want a mobile guide.

How can we make this scale? More museums…Want a more sustainable mobile tool.

Michael Anker, Senior Advisor, Danes Digital Library, “Collaboration on a Large Scale: Danish Digital Library” 


500 public libraries main and branches in Denmark. 5.5 million people. 1/3 frequent users; 1/3 occasional users; 1/3 non-users.

The Digital Library — lots of different groups involved at different levels.

Mission statement: individual citizen’s ability and opportunity to acquire knowledge…. more on his slides

The challenges ahead are only getting bigger. we can only do this together.

Several different sections to this library. Several different websites: for video, for print, for audio, for ebooks, for objects. Companies are not good at curation.

A few examples [in Danish :)]:

Formats changed dramatically over the last 30 years. CDs, then digital fights back. If you want to be ready for change and know the format that’s coming, you can’t. As a result, must have an infrastructure that changes. Curation sites that change.

Bridging the gap between the digital and physical library.

Sharing content on screens in libraries project.

Library produced content, sharing of content. Facilitation of the editorial work in the libraries.

CMS platforms. 50% of the libraries in Denmark are already sharing lots of information. Drupal CMS.

Looking ahead — making the platforms available to others.

Personalization of sites and the data gathered has relationships.

How (design model): Project (development) [ongoing] –> infrastructure –> Maintenance (operations) [ongoing]–> curation that goes into the infrastructure

knowledge=process + true information.

Ting Community to share coding knowledge [again, in Danish]

Lots of different platforms involved in this project.

eBook access use cases. target audiences; function;s different needs; architecture  All of this is up for grabs and anybody can take it.

Very interesting project.

Q&A section

Library School students advice: Michael pushes museum students to rethink the platforms they are to use, the outcomes, libraries are one of many industries that are confused about why they exist and confused about their mission. “The future has arrived, it’s just not evenly distributed yet” -William Gibson.

Libraries are buildings in community. People have to come into our place, for lifelong learning, and leave our place. This isn’t enough. Librarians spend that trust, and be learning leaders in their communities.

Train librarians to change the world. Not vocational training, a calling. Not everyone called to do this.

Single librarian libraries: everything is possible. MUST collaborate and share, to survive.

Bill Joy — Sun microsystems. Most of the smart people work for someone else.

Digital training, necessary. People aren’t being taught this enough.

Understand that technology is only a tool.

You don’t do technology for technology’s sake. Think about what you want to achieve with it. Wireframing and use cases.

Thesis about the solo librarian. information ecology. Tapping into community, institution, and can achieve a lot.

Crisis; we’re still in siloed professional categories. Library studies. museum studies. archival studies.

Digitization is one thing and affordable access is another. More digitization projects are the opposite.

Libraries with like needs could share infrastructure with like needs.