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Librarians and Basketball

by on March 11th, 2014

This week two of my favorite things come together in Indianapolis: the Public Library Association Conference and the Big Ten Men’s Basketball tournament. While I don’t expect to see my favorite Iowa basketball players, I anticipate a great week at the Conference.

In preparation for the conference, here’s my top 10 list of what I’m looking forward to.

#10 Meeting Librarians: PLA hosts librarians from around the world. I’ve met many amazing librarians while sharing a table at a meal and standing in a line.
#9 New Technology: What’s new in the market for DVD unlockers, gadgets, Library Vending Machines (think RedBox for Libraries) and ????
#8 Outreach Ideas: What outreach services do other libraries offer? Could these programs work in Iowa City?
#7 New Service Models: The AnyThink libraries in Colorado are unique and approach services to patrons in a new way. What other unique ideas are out there?
#6 Meeting authors: In the past I’ve met Carl Hiassen, Nora Roberts, Nancy Pearl and others.
BTW: One year I’d just heard Robie Harris and Michael Emberley on NPR talking about their new book, “It’s So Amazing” when I met them at a conference.  My daughter used to make up one-liners that started with, “You know your mom’s a librarian if [fill in the blank].”  My favorite: “You know your mom’s a librarian if your books about puberty are signed by the author … and the illustrator!” LOL
#5 Telling the Library’s Story: What are the trends in social media? What resonates with patrons? Are there new ideas or best practices for sharing information about the Library?
#4 Trends: What’s on the horizon for libraries? What will patrons in Iowa City expect from the Library in the future? How should we prepare for this?
BTW: Did you know vendors track what type of listening options are offered in new cars to predict future demand for audiobook formats? The demise of cassette players in cars foreshadowed the decrease in demand for audiobooks on cassette.  How have formats and technology changed how we listen?
#3 eBook Updates: After consensus building between the American Library Association and publishers, there has been a lot of good news on the Library eBook frontier. I look forward to more friendly conversations with people in the publishing industry and hope for better integration of eBooks with our Library Catalog.
#2 Books, BOOKS and more BOOKS: PLA offers a sneak peek and advanced reader copies of upcoming books. There are author programs, book signings, and receptions with popular authors.  Did I mention lots of BOOKS!?
#1 Making it Real: I always return from a conference recharged and full of new ideas for how we can improve the Library experience for ICPL patrons.

Go Librarians! Go Hawks!  See you in Indianapolis!

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