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Magazines > Computers in Libraries > November/December 2004
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Vol. 23 No. 10 — Nov/Dec 2004
Hip, Hipper, Hippest?
by Kathy Dempsey

Of all our issue themes, I find this one the most fascinating of the year. When we put out the call for articles on Hip High-Tech, we never know what we're going to get. This year, the article queries were very diverse. Since what's über-hip to some librarians is old hat to others, I tried to choose articles that covered a range of "hipness."

Buying a lot of new computers and networking them together is a high-tech venture, and setting up network printing raises the degree of difficulty. Doing all that in a matter of months, while renovating your library, hikes up the difficulty factor again. And these librarians did hit some snags. It got to the point that their print-card system vendor declared a "national emergency"! But with quick thinking, technology trade-offs, and extensive cooperation, the librarians, IT staff, and vendors built an advanced printing network during much-needed library remodeling. Compare their "before" and "after" situations starting on page 10.

You know there are applications that let people communicate online in real time. But were you aware that there's one that lets people share live, online library programs around the globe? And that the software allows the blind to participate in the chatter? The things that Illinois folks are doing with OPAL, Online Programming for All Libraries, are pretty cool. Check it out on page 18.

But you can't get much more hip and high-tech than having a robotic system doing some of your work! CIL tells you what it took for one library team to install a true automated storage and retrieval system. It takes requests from the OPAC and fetches the stored books automatically so patrons can use them within minutes. Turn the page to read about seriously hip high-tech!

Kathy Dempsey, Editor

Kathleen L. Dempsey is the Editor of Computers in Libraries. Her email address is:

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