2014 ALA Midwinter Meeting Exhibit Adventure

A brief overview of our day in the Exhibit Hall at the ALA Midwinter Meeting here in Philly.  My Assistant Director, Pam, suggested (and then followed up) contacting Ingram for Exhibit passes for staff/Board who wanted to take a field trip.  There ended up being 9 of us!  All of my full-time librarians, 2 Board members, my IT person, one Library Assistant and one Library Page.  Judging from the 15 bags’ worth of stuff we hauled to the restaurant afterwards, I think a good time was had by all.

Ideas I don’t want to forget:

  • Gov’t had amazing free stuff for the US Citizenship test, including a guest speaker and there is the possibility we could have a naturalization ceremony at our library.  THAT would be awesome.  There’s a documentary I watched where they went to a ceremony in each of the 50 states.  It restored my faith in the USA. To have something like this in our library, where so many of our residents are new or almost-new Americans would be really fantastic.
  • My former boss does strategic planning consulting.  I have his card…if we do an RFP, he’s definitely getting one.
  • Polaris is going to talk us through customizing our OPAC.
  • Envisionware is going to see if we have already paid for print management.  We still need to install the PC reservation system and see if the maintenance fees we’ve been paying can be refunded since we have yet to use the damn product.
  • Lots of great ideas for how to renovate and add new, adjustable, Circ desk furniture.   I guess some people like to stand up to work, but I want a sit-down area so little kids can see us as we’re checking out their books.
  • RFID was out in full-force, awing my young staff member.  I wish it weren’t so damned expensive. To have the ability to check in books one STACK at a time would be truly awesome.  RFID also means you can locate the book electronically, right?  We could map it and use a phone to track the sucker down.
  • I also had a heart-to-heart with Recorded Books. I’m happy/sad to know they realize just how suck ass their Web site is, but Zinio helps make up for it.

Unrelated, I need to pull together what’s been completed in 2013 and what we hope to accomplish in 2014.  Envisionware is one that we have on the to do list, while adding 8 new computers (all with identical desktops on 2 networks) is a big ol’ kudo to Shawna, my IT guru.


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