Greetings and happy summer!  Arrowhead Library System (ALS) has a long-standing commitment to maintaining a collection of current publication titles of interest to librarians, library staff and library trustees.  The collection is housed at the ALS Headquarters in Mountain Iron, but all titles can be requested via the online catalog (if you have a borrower’s card from an ALS library) or via the statewide MnLINK catalog (if you have a borrower’s card from Duluth Public Library).  If you have questions about borrowing titles from the ALS Professional Collection, feel free to call ALS staff!  Here are the latest additions to the ALS collection: 

Information Visualization (Library Technology Reports, April 2017)
Hsuanwei Michelle Chen
American Library Association, 2017
001.4226 CHE 2017

This issue of Library Technology Reports (vol. 53, no. 3), Information Visualization, shares a comprehensive overview of information visualization, including its definitions, major principles, and common techniques. Author Dr. Hsuanwei Michelle Chen provides an in-depth discussion and demonstration of how information visualization can be applied to a library setting. The objective of this issue of Library Technology Reports is to provide librarians and library staff with a better grasp of what information visualization can do for their institution and how it can help enhance your library’s data analytics, communication, service quality, and work effectiveness. The report appeals to both readers who are new to the field and would like to learn a new method of data analytics, as well as to the individual who is experienced in information visualization and is seeking further opportunities in the library field.

Podcast Literacy: Educational, Accessible, and Diverse Podcasts for Library Users (Library Technology Reports, February/March 2017)
Nicole Hennig
American Library Association, 2017
006.7876 HEN 2017

Podcasts are experiencing a renaissance today. More high-quality programming is available for more diverse audiences than ever before. And in this report, Nicole Hennig will provide you with a guide that includes some of the best educational, accessible, and diverse podcasts available for your library users. Hennig provides suggestions for how you can find the best podcasts, discusses the purposes and benefits of podcasts, and share tips on how we can use this knowledge to point our users to the most relevant content and help increase digital literacy in our communities.

In this issue of Library Technology Reports (vol. 53, no. 2), Hennig will cover:

  • Why podcasts are an important part of digital literacy;
  • Statistics on podcast listening;
  • The advantages of audio-based learning;
  • How to find the best podcasts and the best apps for podcast listening;
  • Lists of recommended podcasts for general audiences, higher education, teens, children, people with disabilities, and diverse and underserved audiences;
  • How podcasts are being used, in context, in K–12 education and higher education;
  • Podcast accessibility for people with disabilities;
  • Ideas for how libraries can become curators and recommenders of podcasts; and
  • Resources for learning more.

The Internet of Things:  Mobile Technology and Location Services in Libraries (Library Technology Reports, January 2017)
Jim Hahn
American Library Association, 2017
020.285 HAH 2017

Drawing examples from a case study of an Internet of Things (IoT)-powered mobile application, librarian Jim Hahn demonstrates IoT uses for location-based services in libraries. The case integrates Bluetooth beacons into an undergraduate library’s book stacks. With BLE (Bluetooth low energy) technology, researchers were able to implement a location-based recommender that relies on subject classifications in call numbers from which to provide recommendations based on location. Recommendations of digital content like e-books and e-journals can be provided from the context of the book stacks browsing experience. This report explores key technologies for bringing IoT services to libraries, noting especially the privacy and security issues for library leaders, system designers, and users of IoT services. Inside, Hahn

  • Introduces the concepts and principles driving the IoT and explores possible library uses with IoT technology;
  • Demonstrates the benefits of location-based services in libraries;
  • Reviews updates to mobile technology and several compelling hardware components that make up the IoT, including Near Field Communication (NFC), Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), and new Wi-Fi standards for Indoor Positioning Systems (IPS); and
  • Considers privacy and security considerations within IoT technology in libraries and offers suggestions for creating privacy policies.

Combating Fake News in the Digital Age (Library Technology Reports, November/December 2017)
Joanna M. Burkhardt
American Library Association, 2017
025 BUR 2017

The issue of fake news has become very prominent in recent months. Its power to mislead and misinform has been made evident around the world. This issue of Library Technology Reports (vol. 53, no. 8), “Combating Fake News in the Digital Age,” explores fake news—its history, how it is shared, the technology that has enhanced its reach, the technology that can help combat it, and the practical steps we can take to help our patrons discern fact from fiction. While fake news is not a new phenomenon, the means by which it is spread has changed in both speed and magnitude. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are fertile ground for the spread of fake news. Algorithms known as bots are increasingly being deployed to manipulate information, to disrupt social media communication, and to gain user attention.

While technological assistance to identify fake news are beginning to appear, they are in their infancy. It will take time for programmers to create software that can recognize and tag fake news without human intervention. Individuals have the responsibility to protect themselves from fake news. It is essential to teach ourselves and our students and patrons to be critical consumers of news. This issue of Library Technology Reports is for librarians who serve all age levels and who can help by teaching users both that they need to be aware and how to be aware of fake news. Library instruction in how to avoid fake news, how to identify fake news, and how to stop fake news will be essential.

Open Source Library Systems:  The Current State of the Art (Library Technology Reports, August/September 2017)
Marshall Breeding
American Library Association, 2017
025.04 BRE 2017

While propriety software continues to dominate, open source solutions are presenting an alternative to libraries. This issue of Library Technology Reports provides you with an outline of the major open source integrated library systems and library services platforms and their influence on the broader library technology industry. The advantages and disadvantages of both open source and proprietary software will be explored in the report.  Breeding begins this issue of Library Technology Reports by presenting an overview of open source resource management solutions and introducing the current landscape of these products in the industry. The chapters following closely examine the open source resource management systems Koha, Evergreen, TIND, and FOLIO. The report concludes by exploring the impact of open source products on the library automation environment.

Applying Quantitative Methods to E-Book Collections (Library Technology Reports, May/June 2017)
Melissa J. Goertzen
American Library Association, 2017
025.284 GOE 2017

In the current digital landscape, information needs often surpass available e-resources, and librarians are required to justify purchases or requests for budget increases with quantitative evidence. By collecting and analyzing quantitative data sets, librarians can evaluate e-book collections and provide administration with evidence that can help them make informed decisions that better support patrons’ needs. In this issue of Library Technology Reports (vol. 53, no. 4), “Applying Quantitative Methods to E-book Collections,” Author Melissa Goertzen demonstrates how to develop an evaluation framework for e-book collections using readily available quantitative data sources. Throughout the report, she provides examples of research methods, data sets, and study results that she’s used to make informed decisions for Columbia University Libraries’ (CUL) e-book collection. This report will guide you through the quantitative analysis process and showcase that analysis methods can be developed for e-book collections regardless of the size of your library or equipment budget. Goertzen covers such important topics as:

  • current trends in patron information needs and publishing;
  • quantitative data and metrics, including key characteristics and various types of research questions they can answer;
  • performance measures and indicators that can be used in information management environments to support conclusions for e-book collection development decisions;
  • a case study of the E-book Program Development Study that Goertzen conducted at CUL and a research framework that Goertzen relies on to plan and define her e-book analysis projects;
  • examples that demonstrates how quantitative methods can answer questions related to fund allocations, return on investment, usage trends, collection impact, and content distribution across subject headings; and
  • a discussion of how quantitative research can translate into collection development policies and best practices.

3-D Printers for Libraries (Library Technology Reports, July 2017)
Jason Griffey
American Library Association, 2017
025.284 GRI 2017

This issue of Library Technology Reports explains both the practicalities of 3-D printing and also its promise and potential in library services. A better understanding of the basics and the theory behind the hardware can help you determine the best ways to integrate 3-D printers into your library. Author Jason Griffey concentrates on the areas where much has changed in the last several years, starting with the variety of materials that are now available for printing. Then he discusses the types of 3-D printing software, including a relatively new set of tools that are designed to make 3-D printing much easier from a management standpoint. Next, he looks at the brands of printers that are available and how best to consider them when making purchasing decisions. And finally, he presents recommendations on library 3-D printing setups. This report will help you better understand the technology involved and will also provide you with a set of recommendations and best practices that will enable you to put together the very best 3-D printing setup for your library community.  This report is an updated version of the 2014 issue of Library Technology Reports 50, no. 5 3-D Printers for Libraries.

Successful Summer Reading Programs for All Ages:  A Practical Guide for Librarians
Katie Fitzgerald
Rowman & Littlefield, 2018
025.5 FIT 2018

Successful Summer Reading Programs for All Ages: A Practical Guide for Librarians provides the tools necessary to put together successful summer reading programs for each of these different age groups. Key elements include:

  • Sample program ideas for early childhood, school-age, teen, and adult readers to suit any summer reading theme
  • Best practices for promoting summer reading to the community
  • Troubleshooting for common difficulties associated with summer reading programs
  • Tips and tricks for using software programs to manage registration and track readers’ progress

Public librarians serving children, teens, and/or adults will find everything they need to put together a successful summer reading program in this comprehensive handbook.

School Library Makerspaces in Action
Edited by Heather Moorefield-Lang
Libraries Unlimited, 2018
025.5 MOO 2018

Maker learning spaces in schools and public libraries are made real through the narratives of professional librarians around the world, comprising the collaborative activities, experiences, and perspectives of librarians as they have implemented makerspaces for students of all ages.  This book provides inspirational examples of successful makerspaces in school and public libraries, furnishes practical, immediately usable projects, assignments, and curricula, offers needed examples of how to train maker librarians and showcases working partnerships between school and public librarians in makerspace endeavors.

Free Reading Zones:  Transforming Access to Books through Technology (Library Technology Reports, October 2017)
Mirela Roncevic
American Library Association, 2018
027 RON 2018

How can we make e-books more readily available to our users, our communities, and society at large? In this issue of Library Technology Reports (vol. 53, no. 7), “Free Reading Zones: Transforming Access to Books through Technology,” Mirela Roncevic explores this question by taking a look at a unique e-book business model that turns geographic spaces into open virtual libraries to enable reading, promote literacy, and expose more books to more people.  This report discusses Free Reading Zones (FREZ), which are designated areas that provide people free and uninterrupted access to e-books through sponsorships. Roncevic shares how this initiative came about, who’s behind it, and the short-term and long-term goals of FREZ. Throughout the issue, Roncevic explores how FREZ can empower the e-book industry—consumers, aggregators, distributers, and publishers—by equalizing access to knowledge and education in areas beyond thriving city communities.

Describing her experience launching the first FREZ in a small European café and turning the entire country of Croatia into an open virtual library for one whole month, she shows how creating open virtual libraries can make reading more accessible and open. The goal of this report is to both inspire and motivate librarians to embrace the idea of open virtual libraries and attempt similar initiatives in their communities.

Beat Boredom:  Engaging Tuned-Out Teenagers
Martha Sevetson Rush
Stenhouse Publishers, 2018
370.154 RUS 2018

Are your students bored in class?  According to research, a majority of American high school students report being bored in class and fewer than 5% claimed that they were rarely bored during a typical day in school.  Former journalist and veteran teacher Martha Rush decided this would not do for her Minnesota students. Moving beyond asking open-ended questions and making connections to their own lives, Martha began to engage her government, journalism, and economics classes in meaty discussions, competitions, simulations, and authentic work, like running a newspaper or starting a business.  Building on her more than 800 interviews with high school graduates, she offers up strategies in all subject areas for active engagement, moving way beyond traditional passive memorization of information. She describes how to create innovative experiences in your classroom, and shares her own lessons and her students’ work. Beat Boredom will help you join the ranks of teachers who have challenged the status quo and found ways to motivate even the most reluctant learners.

The Practical Handbook of Library Architecture:  Creating Building Spaces that Work
Fred Schlipf and John A. Moorman
ALA Editions, 2018
727.8 SCH 2018

Distilling hard fought wisdom gleaned from hundreds of successful library construction projects they’ve supervised or coordinated, the authors present this definitive resource on library architecture. With a special emphasis on avoiding common problems in library design, in a down-to-earth manner they address a range of issues applicable to any undertaking. From planning completely new library buildings to small remodeling projects, they offer specific how-to and how-not-to guidance. Packed with lists and headings to allow for easy scanning, this handbook

  • provides nuts-and-bolts guidance on the entire process of planning, design, and construction, including “snappy rules” summarizing each chapter;
  • covers new construction, remodeling and expanding of existing buildings, and conversion of non-library spaces to libraries;
  • explains how library buildings actually function as objects, and how that applies to library design;
  • reviews typical design problems of existing libraries, and advises libraries on how to avoid creating dysfunctional buildings and spaces;
  • shows how to collaborate productively with planners, architects, and contractors;
  • discusses the technical needs of basic library spaces, including collection storage, user seating, meeting and conference rooms, craft rooms, study areas, service desks, restrooms, and staff workspaces; and
  • includes careful consideration of technical requirements relating to lighting, electrical systems, security systems, elevators, staircases, and other areas.

Library directors, staff, and planning professionals will want this handbook close at hand before, during, and after any library construction project.