Quiz Answers

Thank you to everyone who participated.

1.The percentage of Overdrive ebooks borrowed from 2010 and 2013 increased by 1,875%

2.Libraries loan many types of materials.  In 2014, what percent of those materials checked out were ebooks? 4%

3.The results from a 2013 survey show that the percent of teens online, most often on a smartphone is: 25%

4.Your best guess as to how many school libraries there were in 2015: Nearly 100,000

5.The number of public libraries operating in 2015 was: 16,700

6.Age of people who are the most frequent library users: 16-17 year olds

7. Not all public libraries offered wireless Internet access in 2015.  What percent did? 92%


Constituent Feedback, Sociological Thinking and Innovative Ideas


Part One

The SFPL (San Francisco Public Library) is renowned for their innovative programs.  They are Beta-Testing the latest version of their online catalog, which is a newer version of their new catalog.  They also have had the good sense to retain their original online catalog, which is handy for less technologically minded people; it is also useful when the new catalog isn’t working.  I’m mentioning this in reference to the Professor Stephens article from August 22, 2013 in which he asks, “Does your library engage with a group of constituents to map out possible ideas for programs and events?”

When the Beta-Test site appeared after I logged in last week, it gave me the choice to use the regular new catalog, which I did.  I’d like to give feedback for the Beta, but haven’t yet been able to find an answer for how to return to that version.

Feedback is important – the SFPL recently asked patrons at different branches to provide anonymous feedback.  At the Main Library, the goal they set was 60 surveys in 4 hours.  People walking by were very focused on their missions, and no one appeared to hear that their opinion was requested.  A banner/sign could possibly call attention to these types of opportunities to provide input.


Part Two

The sociological insights of West (21st Century Digital Divide, 2014) and Boyd (What World Are We Building, 2016,) are interesting.  While West writes from a local perspective and Boyd writes from a nation-wide one, they’ve both provided a snapshot of what is happening culturally in the U.S. What I found most interesting in the first article is that the issue of filtering policies, i.e. restrictive requirements that occur when using technology incorrectly, is gaining attention.

As an aside, when I first started using apps (and to this day) my question is, “Where are the manuals for these?”

Boyd’s article brings home that while racism still exists, there are pockets of change in the United States.  I have seen groups of multi-racial teenagers on the San Francisco bus system, friends brought together by common interests and goals.  This is very heartening to me, and I hope the rest of the country catches up soon.

His article was also helpful by explaining how clicks drive Google’s algorithms.

The part of Boyd’s article that most impressed me was how big data was/can be harnessed as a means of accomplishing Social Good in his example of providing teens with support.  It is very encouraging to see a positive, non-commercial use for Big Data.


Part Three

The Idea Box (Oak Park, Illinois), ribbons (Charlevoix, Michigan,) walls (New Orleans, Louisiana,) as well as the San Francisco Public Library’s Teen Library are a few of the innovative methods libraries use to draw in their public’s contributions.  My vote among all of the ideas mentioned in Modules 4 and 5 for most inventive is Eli Neiburger (AskACPL. (2012.)  The summer program with teenagers who learned about social media/how to be online wisely is noteworthy because it was entertaining as well as educational.



Context Book Homework on BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google


There were many good books on the list to choose from. I feel fortunate that my final choice was interesting, well-written, timely and concentrated on both the choices of and the possibilities for libraries.


BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google (hereafter referred to as BiblioTech,) by John Palfrey is an illuminating look at the factors impacting libraries and by extension, librarians both historically, in the present and in terms of an optimal future.

Palfrey begins BiblioTech with the historical background of libraries overall in the first chapter.  He explains the importance of the Carnegie funds in making it possible to have structures, books and librarians and how the idea of free libraries on a grand scale was conceived of and carried out.

The author of Bibliotech was instrumental in the creation of the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), which collects archival information from smaller libraries around the country.  The DPLA is a not-for-profit organization.  When his book BiblioTech was written in 2015 the organization had, “[A] tiny staff [and] 7.5 million curated objects in its database.” (p.98-100) Collected materials include movies, sound clips, pictures and much more.  These materials are available online and are accessible to anyone who would like to use them.

Around the world there are other countries that are digitizing their collections.  Palfrey envisions the ability to access a global digital library in the future.  Within the scope of what can be accomplished with this kind of library is this example from the book: A student can access “notebooks that Sir Isaac Newton” used in 1661, then with click over to a “BBC radio production that puts the notebooks in context.” (p.117)

What is just as amazing as the idea of the DPLA is that their site is built on open-source code.  This code is free to all and has great potential for “…build[ing] innovative new applications.” (p. 103) Palfrey cites this as an example of a successful library platform.  An explanation he gives of library platforms is that they are similar to digital enterprises by private companies like Amazon and Google, but when the library world creates them they are free to use. (p.104)

The DPLA was built collaboratively with many libraries participating.  Palfrey states that working in collaboration is key for librarians in the future, both with each other and with companies from outside of librarianship.  One example from the book is an ongoing joint project between librarians and Wikipedia, with the goals of, “…improv[ing] the quality of Wikipedia articles and associated metadata.” (p.96)

The Digital Public Library of America is also notable because there were only a small number of people involved in its implementation. Beginning in 2010, 40 people solicited feedback about the prospective DPLA, with widely diverse input. (p.96) That the DPLA was up and running well in just a few years’  highlights the rapid rate of change in our world of technological advancements, and how accomplishments can be measured in years, rather than decades or centuries.

Below is a link to a short quiz (7 questions) featuring statistical data where you can test your knowledge about libraries in the United States.  All answers are anonymous.


A week after the due date for this assignment an entry will be posted on my blog with the correct answers.


Foundational Blogs

The bad news, libraries are underfunded.  The good news, they are innovating in what they offer their communities, and communities in places such as DOK in Holland are leaps and bounds ahead in their implementation of first-run services. DOK is the environment that I wish I had had to play in as a child; maybe I would have kept up with my music lessons.  What they have done in their library is taken concepts from technology and repurposed them.  The commercial applications are utilized in a public space, with much enjoyment by all.  As Professor Stephens wrote, “[Hyperlinked] [l]ibrarians are tapped in to user spaces and places online to interact, have presence, and point the way.” (2011, p.2)

There’s a book by Eli Pariser called The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You.  The explains how and why on Google two different people will receive two different sets of search results.  From my Google search on ‘DOK Library Delft’ comes this link:



I read Redesigning Library Services: A Manifesto with great interest.  He was prescient in many of his determinations. As Buckland says in his chapter on The Electronic Library, “What counts is what is conveniently accessible” (1992, p.41) This is borne out by the much more recent article by Denning which explains that Borders became obsolete because they focused on traditional materials, while Amazon is thriving. (2015, no page number)


Definition of librarian

  1. : a specialist in the care or management of a library

From the online Merriam Webster Dictionary…

But librarians are so much more…

Increasingly, a useful expert is not someone with all the answers but someone who knows where to find answers. The new experts have value not by centralizing information and control but by being great “pointers” to other people and to useful, current information. (Weinberger, 2001, Let’s put the hyper back into hyperlinks section) This is the quintessential definition of a Librarian.


The articles in Module 2 and 3 were thought-provoking, and while I was inspired by the majority of them I was also occasionally at odds with the material:

I really would like to be on the selective side of technology, where I make conscious decisions about how and when I incorporate it.  There would be a loss to the human race if serendipity were to disappear.  How many of us, in our travels, followed an amazing odor to a little-known restaurant?  A future of being bombarded with information about every place to eat in my immediate area is unappetizing.

Roush’s 2005 short article about the possible uses for future technology brought up mixed feelings – Of course, the world is digitizing, but many people are buying the dream of the stake-holders and those with vested interests.  It would be good to take a step back, not necessarily to undigitalize, but to step away from our cell phones and laptops.  It’s even better to use this opportunity to LOOK AT and SEE the world around us without a digital filter.

In an analogy to food, a good meal suffices; no need to gorge at a buffet with a surfeit of consumables.


Again from Weinberger, I’m heartened to hear of corporations/companies like Aetna who build up their employees by providing them with informational opportunities that they can access at work. (2001, Personal Work Time section) Good companies such as these are successful because they treat their employees as people, rather than replaceable units.  This is an example of what human is.



Interesting Articles

There are some interesting links and one post in particular I’d like to share.  In the post is my book review of Made to Stick, in the Archives from February 2016. It’s here:  http://ischoolblogs.sjsu.edu/info/lauretteblog/2016/02/ The links can be found by clicking ‘Thought-Provoking Webpages’ here: http://ischoolblogs.sjsu.edu/info/lauretteblog/thought-provoking-webpages/   The articles include a link to a fabulous introductory video to an academic library and information about SJSU’s being a Green Open Access Repository, meaning that when work is submitted there people can view and reference it without a costly database subscription.

The link to my ischool blog is here: http://ischoolblogs.sjsu.edu/info/lauretteblog/

Introductory Post

I’m hoping to learn new methods of incorporating technology in the library world.  Last year, in INFO 200 with Bontenbal, Michael was a featured speaker in some of the modules.  I was inspired to take this class by his presentations.

I am aiming towards working in a Public or Academic Library, in either case in the area of Reference.

My favorite part of the world is the island of Kauai in Hawaii.  It was surreally beautiful there when I visited.   I live in San Francisco, another tourist destination and appreciate the shopping here, but would love to be somewhere where the sun shines more.