Computers in Libraries Wrapup Post

I’m at the airport, waiting for our flight to Kansas City to arrive and then we’ll get on and head back to Kansas. I’m hanging out with four other fellow Kansas librarians/tech staff (awesome!). What a conference. I think I’m going to hold off and write a reflection post this weekend about the conference, but since I blogged so many sessions, I wanted to post a recap post that pulls all my notes together, linked in one place. Liveblogging was fun. And seeing so many friends and library colleagues and meeting new ones was even better. I’ll leave the reflection at that for the moment.

Many of these posts are rough and I will go back in and add links later, and hopefully find other blog summaries from the sessions. Maybe I’ll even find the time to locate other sessions’ notes and at least read through them.

Without further ado then, here’s all the different session notes I was able to take throughout the conference:

Day 1:

Day 2:

Day 3:

Keynote: Three Keys to Engaging Digital Natives

Tuesday, March 22 Keynote

Michelle Manafy

Director of Content, Free Pint Limited and editor of Dancing with Digital Natives

There are differences between the generations.

Digital natives: lifelong access to technology; nearly ubiquitous Internet access.

The term digital native was intro’d by Mark Prensky. Natively speak the language of computers, cell phones, gaming, Internet.

Mark Prensky; Urs Gaser; Gartner Group

“Digital Natives will be “the beneficiaries of hidden advantages…that all them to learn and work … in ways that others cannot.” –Malcolm Gladwell

Kids: privacy is no longer a social norm (Mark Zuckerberg). Kids are living a much more public life now.

1. Kids are all about public opinion, not private lives.

“Andy Warhol’s saying ‘everyone will be famous for 15 minutes’ has changed to ‘everyone will be famous to 15 people.'” –Tara Hunt, The Whuffle factor.

Users share a little much information.

Stupid criminals are not a new phenomenon. Police troll social media; gangs publicly post their activities, and are a font of information.

Truly communal generation: share details of all aspects of their lives.

Gives police the opportunity to crowdsource criminal investigations.

State Library of Victoria’s YouTube channel — engages the digital natives where they live. Options that allow you to blur the distinction between online and your environment.

Social Signon — instead of using an anonymous signin process, use your social media account to login to a website. Creates a sense of community engagement.

NPR does this. TakingitGlobal does this. Sharing their story on all the social networks.

Your users will become your greatest advocates…


2. Knowledge Sharing, Not Knowledge Herding.

“Crowdsourcing is the act of taking a job traditionally performed by a designated agent (usually an employee) and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally a large group of people.” –Jeff Howe

HAUL Videos: Shopping YouTube videos.

Let’s get an idea how digital natives do innovation on their terms.

Quirky. Place for social product development. bring your proposed invention, the network votes on products, comments on them. One is selected and brought to market. (Quirky gets a percentage of sales of the invention; the people who vote on the product get a percentage of sales). This is real-time market feedback. Buzz starts to be created, while the product is being discussed before it gets to market.

Local Motors. Car designers. Every major aspect of the car designs are created in an open community process. The company makes its plan for its cars completely open.

ProPublica. Collaborative journalism. Systematize the process of crowd-sourcing. Work with readers to better inform the news.

Digitialcoo (sp?). Finland. Access to Finnish cultural heritage and documents. Users play games to help improve the search of the cultural heritage project.

Schoolsapp. Facebook app that allows schools to create private networks on Facebook. Schools are reporting a higher sense of matriculation and staying longer because of the increased sense of community.

P&G Connect. Product Development site. Over 50 percent of its initiatives involve collaboration with outside innovators.

IBM. Added a development social network portal to its development portal.

Older generations are scared of sharing knowledge. Knowledge itself is not power. Knowledge sharing is power.

Proprietary work. We ignore sharing at our peril. People focus on marketing, CRM, promoting your organization. We need to see that this process of crowd-sourcing isn’t a coffin-nailer. Science=build upon work of others. Art=inspiration from others. Innovation=gradually improving.

New era of innovation coming, never seen before?

They don’t want to just buy products and services. they want to be involved & then buy the goods and services they helped create.

Users have more trust in crowd-sourced organizations and products than the traditional model.

3. Interactions not Transactions

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” –King James Bible.

Digital currency. Credit cards. Virtual world economies. Social capitalism (ratings and reputation).

This generation is definitely vocal. If you don’t find a way for them to express their opinions about your product, they will find one.

Bicyclists against United.

YouTube videos about United luggage.

United: Twitter One way communication, mostly.

Not that many people have relationships with machines.

Listen. Respond. React. We talk about conversations, but people tend to forget to listen. Genuine communication is what this generation seeks. Listening, responding, and reacting all a part of this.

Threadless. products created by the community.

PBS Digital Nation project. created a conversation and a documentary in the process. It actively sought input from its community members. They continue to engage with the community.Created relationships and a stellar documentary in the process.

Submit a picture, and 6 word creativity of how digital world has changed your lives.

  1. Crawl to laptop to skype Grandma.
  2. I emailed him. He deleted me.
  3. Dinosaur. Evolving.

Library sites examples.

  • chat with a librarian.
  • Teen-specific parts of library website.
  • Library-curated areas of resources for specific demographics.
  • Hennepin county libraries mentioned.

If you give the opportunity for real-time feedback, they’ll respond.

  • Library of Birmingham in UK. International knowledge exchange. Build a community around knowledge.
  • many of these businesses mentioned, were founded by digital native entrepreneurs.
  • They create content. Share information. Provides an opportunity to listen and do business better.
  • To move forward, risk business model, do scary things.

@michellemanafy on Twitter.


Book: Dancing with Digital Natives.


Learning Virtually: 23 Things and Counting

Cindi Hickey, Louise Alcorn, Christa Burns, and I presented at the 23 Things and Counting session. Obviously I didn’t take any notes. 🙂

The slides from the portion of the session that Cindi and I gave are online here, and the website that we created as part of our presentation is available here.

It went very well (I thought), and I loved how well the session easily segued into Gretchen and Brian’s session on Transliteracy that was next/last on the day’s track.

Transliteracies: Libraries as the Critical “Classroom”

Brian Hulsey, Electronic Resources/Serials Coordinator, Columbus State University

Gretchen Casseroti, Head of Children and Teen Services, Darien Library

Bobbi Newman could not be at the conference 🙁

Libraries and Transliteracy Website

Gretchen Casseroti

My public library is all about stories (factual)

Folk Tales (Sleeping Beauty). Oral tradition. Brothers Grimm put it into print (nuances). Book. Ballet. Books. Movie. Website Games. Board games. Costuming. Sleeping Beauty is an app as an iPad. Story is what is holding their interest.

Multi-media storytelling: Disney has been doing it for years.

Content vs. Container (kids don’t pay attention to containers): “A typewriter is a means of transcribing thought, not expressing it. –Marshall McLuhan.

Stories are changing: Interactive Fiction. (Teens). The Amanda Project

Kids are learning leaders. Story. Gadget. Subject Area of interest. Kids in a sandbox. Explore. Learn from their mistakes.

The parents need a formal structure. Not as confident.

Flexibility is key. 21st Century Skills — but where are skills going??

Transliteracy is the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools, and media.

Transliteracy is an umbrella. Literacy types: print, information, visual, spacial (map-reading), scientific, cultural, media, digital

Something that unifies all of these concepts that the kids are exploring.

Across not All

What can we do?

Reach out to all staff and the community

Libraries need to step up our game. Will the kids learning this way, even use the library when they are grown? All staff need to be involved in the learning process. ALL Staff. Every time staff talks to patron, if every person can give an added value to the experience….


  • Tech Bites (Darien Library)
  • Tech Munchies (Skokie Public Library)
  • Staff led technology training in an informal environment.

Rethink Access to our Collection (Oakland Public Library, Pictogram display)

Picture Books reorganized: changed from alphabetically to color-coded. Ex: pre-literate child: they know color, not spine labels.

Summer Reading Strategies (reluctant readers)

1. Let them read outside the box: print vs. eBook vs. Audio

2. Reading passport. Instead of 15 books read, kids can explore different literacies: drawing, objects, what they were interested in, futuristic cars: have ice cream machines. Kids answered questions that they explored; topics all over the board. Huge success at Darien.

Be technology leaders. Tech Sandbox, Gadget workshops.

Helping patrons one interaction at a time. Micro-interactions turn into a macro-level

Be a place to create, not just consumption. Youmedia.

But also about access to materials, each other. Henry Jenkins — participation gap AND digital divide.

Make your library a place that encourages conversations, invites participation; provides creative outlets; embraces alternative learning styles.

Think about what you can do in your library setting.

Brian Hulsey: Libraries as the Critical Classroom

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” Alvin Toffler

Standard forms of instruction no longer work.

Transliteracy is the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools, and media. (there is a longer quote)

You may not be able to understand the different literacies all at once.

You can stand under my umbrella

Trans — Across; Transition, Translation, Transposition A–>B

Move an idea to the platforms we’re comfortable using.

Trans Beyond Transformation. Language. How we communicate is being transformed.

Original idea can be pushed out in so many different ways: blogs, role playing games, social network; video, published book, painting, etc.

RRR (Reading, Writing, Rithmetic) — never will change. Have to have as a foundation.

NYTimes — Three Rs are no relevant. “The Seven Transdisciplinaries of the Mind,” Educational Technology.

Four Cs: Communicate. Collaborate. Create.

If you’re the best technical writer, but work poorly with people, you’re not productive.

Jobs today, weren’t here 10 years, 10 months ago!

Diversity (program; interests). Flexibility (know your audience; mindmap from reading). Integrating (want the students to come in and work in the library). Transformation (what does the library mean to you: kids did videos, tactile art projects; listen to feedback).

Blended Learning: ability levels (at technology levels esp) of students coming to college widely vary; slowly get them interested in the topic at hand.

Networked Communities: social media. book club. knitting blog. smattering connections that defines you as a person. One person has multiple learning communities: Information. Community development. Educational Technology. Informal. Professional. Research.

Daily Life: IRS tax forms online; medical info online. Driving materials online. Have to help people understand using tax forms online. Simple Computer classes. Email classes.

Personal Privacy: people don’t understand this! Teach them security tips; teach them about privacy settings; most minute thing that many people take for granted. Password security

Building Bridges: digital divide and many other divides. Multi-level caste system. PEW research project on teen mobile use: different demographics use mobile phones more because that’s their only source of Internet access.

It will not be easy: not just for our jobs to stay relevant, but to help your community and your family.

“The future is here. It’s just not evenly distributed.” –William Gibson


  • Techbites: brown bag lunch; lunch catered; demo of Twitter as a useful communication tool. Author wrote back about the book discussion after staff posted about a book club. Informal sessions.
  • iPad discussion group. App recommendations.
  • Info Literacy session with students: how to figure out where each group of students are at. Brian watches body language as he begins the session. Plan out time in the session (if possible); ask simple questions like have you used this; work with the professor you’ve been working with (see what the professor knows what’s going on in the class — what the students need). Result of filtering at K12 level — kids don’t know how to use the tools.
  • Perception of transliteracy term in the library communication: divide with people over this term. Full term needs to be done by a theorist, not a library person. We can work with concept. Librarians get caught up with what its being called. Sue Thomas & others in the UK invented this. Don’t hate the name: teach the concept, go between all the different literacies. Have it as part of your toolbox. It gives you a framework. We have to be changing and rethinking everything to remain relevant in the future. 21st Century Skills; Transmedia; Learning 2.0/23 Things; it’s not intimidating academically. This is something that’s approachable and comfortable. It’s great to have the discussion about it grow and develop.

Creating 21st Century Information-Literacy Programs

Rick Bearden and Emily Mitchell, Ferris State University

PILOT (Project Information Literacy Online Tutorial); Texas Information Tutorial (TILT)

One of the best things about TILT is you don’t have to recreate the wheel; it’s free.

bad: out-dated; ugly

Library Orientation all online students at Ferris State would take. PILOT was out-of-date. But limited on time: had to reorganize and restructure physical library.

New tutorial criteria

  • modular (student can just come in and take relevant part and then apply)
  • linkable (point of need)
  • easy to update (PILOT hadn’t been updated in years; not easy to update!)
  • interactive (old, boring: lots of text, bad; interactivity would need to be easily editable)

Interface features supporting criteria

  • navigation with both menu and arrows
  • Provide many ways to learn (varied display elements)
  • A new session will start from where you left off (you get interrupted)
  • Real time feedback from practice exercises

Screenshots being shown of the presentation right now.

  • Online chat embedded as part of the new tutorial
  • Simple elements such as a table can be used. Easily buildable pages (CSS does the formatting)
  • Fancier elements such as a lightboxes are available
  • Go interactive with drag and drop practice exercises (Not Flash — Javascript)
  • Code is provided for more elements: headings, paragraphs, lists, audio files, emphasis boxes, images, links (or include your own HTML)

Tutorial creation of interface

Philosophy of design: (Rick doesn’t like CMSes like Drupal) Philosophy of design: provide tools for novices to build useful tutorials but don’t dumb it down so much that it is impossible to do anything cool.

Editing Home, uses tabs

  • Add metadata
  • Edit metadata
  • Edit content
  • View content
  • Reorder
  • Delete
  • Upload File
  • Can clone it

Create and Manage quiz sets available

PILOT runs on LAMP. Code, content, and documentation will be made freely available to any library that wants it early summer 2011. Come up to leave us a business card if you want to be contacted when we are ready for distribution; or you can email us at: Rick Bearden ( Emily Mitchell (

Alan Bearman, Sean Bird, Keith Rocci, Washburn University

Interactive Presentation online

Information-Literacy Programs: The Washburn University Model (Topeka, KS)

London, Kentucky, Kansas journey — accent fun 🙂

Is the physical library in the 21st Century necessary? (The Googlization of Everything argument)

Washburn is a teaching university, sits between two research universities (KU and K-State); administration asked do we need a physical library in the 21st century. Dr. Bearman became the Dean of Libraries at Washburn University in 2008.

The library had become disengaged from the university. It had been a place that purchased lots of physical stuff just in case. Collection-centric model. Administration was really questioning the value of the library at the campus.

YES! The campus does still need a library. The library is more important today than ever before; not because of the collection but because of the people. The librarians are absolutely crucial to our teaching of information literacy. Administration response: what’s information literacy?

“To create information literate graduates the university library must be central to the student experience”

You can create information literate graduates in the information age, if they’re discontented from the students. Extend the library. Not just physical space. Digital branch. Local: tutorials for specific classes. Generic — general tutorials. Parents — orientation, library speaks to them. Library must be central to the student experience.

Washburn University Learning Outcomes (went from 9 vague standards unmeasurable to these)

  1. Communication (COM)
  2. Quantitative and Scientific Reasoning and Literacy (QSRL)
  3. Information Literacy and Technology (ILT)
  4. Critical and Creative Thinking (CCT)
  5. Global Citizenship, Ethics and Diversity (GCED)

Library had to figure out how to teach this outcome.

How did we assess our efforts? (keith is a teacher)

  1. Retention: 8% increase for 2009 cohort
  2. Student achievement: .37 increased GPA
  3. Student surveys: 84% student satisfaction

Success brings success.

Are we successful? (Sean Bird)

(data drives what we do) anecdotal evidence; Sean has seen this library since 1985 as an alum.

Library demanded them to study in the same ways as in the analog world, even in 2005

After Dr. Bearman came, things changed. No more zones. Carrels

Now different types of zones. Collaboration allowed.

  1. Library traffic increased 15%
  2. University President is a strong advocate (before didn’t think the library necessary)
  3. Academic Support Initiatives moved to library
  4. Second Assistant Dean position
  5. Coffee Kiosk

The library was packed. Every table was packed. Every computer was packed. Reading. Writing. The library place had changed.

Departments are holding meetings in the library because of the coffee shop.

Students are being encouraged to use the library to be questions.


  • Retention rate: Washburn had been criticized about its retention rate VERY publicly. The information literacy emphasis will hopefully drastically improve the retention rate. Students overwhelmed by information overload; must learn to deal with information. Washburn is working on this through their changes. Still to know the data.
  • Information Literacy: classes were taught for 15 years; 1 unit class “the library experience” tied to 2 unit class “the college experience” the content isn’t much different. Serials librarian teaching (rejuvenated his career); Access services librarian enjoying as well. Students get grades from this point. The instruction librarians — faculty status. The library went out and engaged the faculty and conversation and administration. That made a HUGE difference.
  • Washburn University: does have digital tutorials.