When we think about the design of modern technology and devices, we think in terms of adaptability, usability, evolution and responsiveness. I would be so bold as to assert that perhaps technology borrowed these terms from public libraries. We “rabble-rouser bookworms” have always been the driving forces behind the continued search for enhancing services. We ask: “What is the user experience like?” “What do our patrons need?” Since the advent of public libraries, we have continually evolved based upon the needs of patrons that cross our doorstep or utilize our resources.
By now we are all (mostly) familiar with iTunes and Netflix, the services by which content is shared with users. Libraries were not far behind these models, and took it to the next level in developing the necessary architecture and information infrastructure to share resources in a collaborative environment. It was no small feat for us, or our vendors, to revolutionize the ability to share through the power of the library card.
A recent example is Hoopla – a new service available on our web page to download movies, audiobooks and music right to your own device. Each patron may borrow up to 10 items per month, and items are automatically returned so there are no worries about fines. Pretty incredible!
In keeping with the demand for digital materials, we also strengthened our collection this year by using valuable per capita resources to add more titles to eMediaLibrary – our online audiobook and ebook platform. This technology allows patrons to access library materials 24/7 online. But never fear, the traditional book in all its glory will never go away. We even have a "New Materials" display shelf coming that will allow patrons easier access to our newest titles. Sometimes it is the little things that make the biggest impact when it comes to how we serve our community.
You can find out more about what is happening at the Lisle Library District from our web page at www.lislelibrary.org. We hope you enjoy all the new “hoopla” happening at the library!
Shannon Halikias is executive director of the Lisle Library District.