Bring It On
by Dick Kaser
At the end of the year, it always seems appropriate to look forward with anticipation of the change and opportunities that every new year brings. In this edition of Computers in Libraries, our standing columnist Marshall Breeding gives you his take on the five top technology trends to keep an eye on. In a companion article, David Lee King advises you on how to watch trends in general and adapt your strategies to take advantage of new possibilities.
These days, everyone is talking about how to innovate in libraries. As one example of how you might take a shot at it, librarians from Ventura County Library and Maricopa County Library District share the approach they used to adopt and adapt the open source Raspberry Pi device as a driver for automating library signs. There are many other applications you might use it for.
Librarians from the National Library of the Netherlands describe their approach to fostering innovation in their library and spearheading innovation at libraries across their nation through collaboration—another concept that is much discussed in library strategic plans these days.
One factor that often prevents librarians from adopting new technology and innovating with it is a feeling that IT is too complex. Kyle Banerjee (a librarian at OHSU) cuts to the chase in his review of everything you need to know about three core technologies in use in today’s libraries: URIs, linked data, and FRBR. Sophia Guevara gives you lessons from her own professional playbook on how to overcome your trepidation about technology, learn to talk like a techie, and—at the end of the day—actually become at one with IT. And last, but never least, our regular columnist Jessamyn West tells you how to overcome your own fears (and help your patrons overcome their anxiety) when conducting personal financial transactions online.
We all have to start somewhere. Wherever you are in the learning curve, this issue of CIL will give you plenty to think about as your chart your own course in the new year. Resolve now to make 2018 the year that you look at technology and say, “Bring it on.”
Dick Kaser, Executive Editor