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Jan 27, 2014
To successfully roll out RFID, it is critical to establish a clear set of priorities for doing so and to continually make choices based on those priorities. Decisions must be made about how the system will be configured to suit the workflow you want to use. Remodeling may be required to locate equipment where it will be most effective. Signage and patron assistance will be required. Oftentimes, circulation policies need to be modified or materials security strategies need to change.
Jan 8, 2014
I'll be doing another webinar for Infopeople soon. This one is Optimizing Materials Handling on the Cheap: How to Lean Your Workflow. I hope you'll attend! More info below...
Date: Thursday, January 30th, 2014
Start Time: 12 Noon Pacific
- Is your backroom overrun with book carts full of in-process material?
- Does it take more than a couple hours to get your incoming delivery processed?
- Does it take three days to catch up after a holiday closure?
- Does it take more than four people to get a new acquisition into circulation?
- Can you easily determine the age and status of items on every book cart?
As much as we love our book carts, they have helped us develop some very bad habits, and Lean will help us reduce or eliminate some of these bad habits. Lean is a management philosophy designed to identify and eliminate “waste” in a workflow. Waste can be any number of things including waiting, unnecessary handling or transport, duplicating steps, processing that doesn’t provide any benefit to the customer, and unnecessary hand-offs. By eliminating these wastes, we can find an optimal workflow that will get items to our customers faster and reduce our costs.
Nov 7, 2013
I just came back from the California Library Association Annual Conference (which was a big hit, by the way!). As usual, I made my way through the exhibits talking with the vendors about ongoing projects and how things are going. This time, I came away a bit frustrated because it seemed like so many AMH and RFID projects appeared to be going a bit awry.
The thing is, projects can go wrong very quickly when libraries pursue complex technology implementations without retaining the connection to the "why" of the project. In order to successfully roll out a capital-intensive technology project, it is critical to establish a clear objective, or set of priorities, for doing so. And to continually make choices based on those priorities.
Oct 22, 2013
Another issue of Collaborative Librarianship is out and my Technology Matters column is about radio wave technologies and where the biggest privacy concerns really are. Some people refer to RFID chips as "tiny trackers" and that certainly makes them sound creepy. But it could be that the creepiest "tracker" out there is our beloved smartphone!
Here's an excerpt:
It is easy to jump onto the Big Brother bandwagon and wrap everything in tin foil but the fact is that a lot of these technologies improve our lives, even save lives. Also, more and more people appreciate the convenience provided by these various technologies more than they worry about the implications for privacy. It is important, therefore, for librarians to help our patrons become educated consumers so they can make choices that strike the right balance of privacy and convenience for themselves.
Sep 8, 2013
Is someone looking into the idea of using the Apple "Complete my Album" idea for enticing readers to buy e-books? If so, I haven't seen it yet but there's a LOT of ebooks stuff to read if you are really trying to stay on top of the issue. You could start with "68 essential resources for eBooks in libraries by Ellyssa Kroski." And I confess I'm not following the topic as closely as some others do.
Jun 20, 2013
Attached is a nice little article from CIO magazine about King County Library System's move from Innovative to Evergreen, their challenges, and the solutions they've employed. Here's the article.
Catalyst is interested in doing more work with libraries and now that they have some experience with Evergreen doing development and support, I imagine they'd like to get more customers on that platform.
Jun 9, 2013
I'll be at the New Berlin Public Library June 26th to talk about RFID. AFter the morning session, described below, we'll have a few hours in the afternoon for open discussion. Members of the Waukesha County Federated Library System, Eastern Shores Library System, Kenosha County Library System, Lakeshores Library System, Mid-Wisconsin Federated Library System, Milwaukee County Federated Library System, and also UW-Milwaukee SOIS are invited!
Jun 4, 2013
Once your library decides to transition to RFID, one of the first things you have to consider if integration with library management system (LMS aka ILS) and your RFID system. Basic check-out on your self-check machines will probably work just dandy regardless of your RFID/LMS vendors because these communications are usually based on SIP2. But as soon as you get into any advanced functionality (e.g. fee payment, account management) on the self-checks and especially when you get into the functionality of the staff client, it all goes to hell.
Jun 4, 2013
Once your library decides to transition to RFID, one of the first things you have to consider is integration with library management system (LMS aka ILS) and your RFID system. Basic check-out on your self-check machines will probably work just dandy regardless of your RFID/LMS vendors because these communications are usually based on SIP2. But as soon as you get into any advanced functionality (e.g. fee payment, account management) on the self-checks and especially when you get into the functionality of the staff client, it all goes to hell.
Jun 3, 2013
If you are going to ALA in Chicago, you might want to take advantage of free consulting from one of the 15-20 consultants that will be providing free consulting sessions during the Consultants Give Back session.
Find the consultant who can help you at /. If you find someone with the right skills for your project, contact them and make an appointment ahead of time. There are some drop-in options but most of the consultants require appointments.