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Smart Libraries Newsletter

March 2012

  The Library Automation News Cycle Typically, news in the library automation industry tends to be clustered around major conferences, and larger conferences tend to attract bigger news. The American Library Association Annual Conference (held each summer) and the Midwinter Meeting (held early...

September 2010

This month’s lead story illustrates real-world examples of some broader industry trends and how they manifest themselves in areas like business and technology. The research for this article was a fascinating exercise in tracing the roots of products familiar today back to the earlier era of library automation history that spanned multiple continents. Through this story, we can also see the...

August 2010

It’s Time to Focus on User-Facing Technologies It’s clear that in today’s library technology scene, the products and services that impact library users directly attract strategic interest more than those directed toward behind-the-scenes functions. The realities of the current economic situation dictate that librarians have far fewer resources than we need to invest in all of the technologies...

July 2010

Qualifying Qualities for Tech Partners This newsletter often spotlights the companies that provide technology-related products and services to libraries. It’s a diverse group of organizations, including large international companies, large non-profit membership organizations as well as medium-sized and small firms. The ownership and business models also vary. Some base their offerings on...

June 2010

Common Problems / Diverse Solutions I find that one of the most exciting aspects of the current library technology scene is the expanding diversity of available alternatives to libraries. Today we see vigorous competition among different models of software licensing and development, differing conceptual models of how best to frame library automation functionality, and a variety of technical...

May 2010

Maintaining a Balance I find that one of the key challenges in covering the field of library technology is finding the right balance and perspective in both the selection and the development of the stories that you write. It’s important to highlight emerging trends, especially when they have some potential to make a broad impact, but it’s just as important to place any new developments in the...

April 2010

The Business Side of Library Automation I think that a library’s approach to technology should be more about partnerships than procurements. Acquiring a new technology product isn’t necessarily just about the current snapshot of its features and functionality, but also about the alignment between the library’s strategic directions and that of its technology partners. It’s important to know as...

March 2010

Coming to Terms with Mobile We’re still in the very early days of mobile services for libraries, and we’ve got a lot of catching up to do. Mobile sites will always offer a subset of the functionality available through their counterparts on the traditional Web. So it’s essential to deliver the right information and service options that will make the effort worthwhile to mobile users. The early...

March 2010

In Smart Libraries Newsletter this Month: Coming to Terms with Mobile"Mobile technology suddenly seems to be all the rage in libraries. This issue of Smart Libraries Newsletter includes several stories of new products or services that aim to deliver library content and services to users with mobile devices. I’ve been aware of the rising importance of mobile technology for quite a long time, but...

February 2010

In Smart Libraries Newsletter this Month: "The start of a new year and a new decade gives us a great opportunity to take a look ahead at some of the major technology trends that are currently playing out and examine how they will impact libraries. I think that it’s quite important to pay close attention to the changes and transitions playing out in the library automation industry, and also in the...

January 2010

In Smart Libraries Newsletter this Month: OLE advances forward through the Kuali Foundation by Marshall Breeding "The Open Library Environment (OLE) is an initiative funded by the Andrew W. Mellon foundation with the goal of creating a new platform to provide automation support for research libraries. OLE has completed its initial planning project and is preparing to begin its software...