Making the Move – Technology Update

As you’ve probably heard by now, we’ve closed our mall locations and have moved back to Curtis St. We really enjoyed our time at the mall but we’re glad to be going home too.

 

Though all of our books and equipment have made the move, we don’t open until January 16th so that we can get everything back where it…well, not necessarily where it was, but where it’s going in the new layout.

 

Possibly the most complex part of our move is the technology.

 

Many of the public computers are being replaced with systems running the latest Windows 7 software. Once they’re set up, they all have to be configured to work with our network and, once they have Internet connectivity, they’ll need all kinds of updates. That’s usually not complicated but it sure takes a lot of time. We’ve seen a computer require as many as 68 updates in 4 sets of downloads as the unit gets caught up on what it’s been missing since it was boxed up at the factory.

 

The old public computers have all been updated and cleaned up thanks to volunteer help, but it still took 3 days! They’ll be going downstairs in our new computer lab, which requires a whole new set of networking. (The public computer stations will have completely new machines!)

 

The lab is a new feature that we’ve added in the renovations. We know how important the digital world is, whether for job hunters, local business people, researchers or people staying in touch with family and friends. With this in mind, we hope to offering public training in the lab this year, as well as having a terrific facility that local organizations can take advantage of. Please note – the computer lab will not be “up and running” by the time of opening. It is the temporary home to all computer and technology while we’re setting up the library. The public will have the opportunity to see it a week or two after the library reopens. (Sorry for the inconvenience!)

 

Then there are all the staff computers that have to be set up, along with the accompanying printers and our very popular wireless network. We also have computers assigned to specific duties, such as managing public printing or making reservations for our public Internet access computers. In most cases this is simply a matter of getting the same setup in place again but we also have some new systems that will need to learn how to work together.

 

And that’s the easy stuff.

 

Our security gates and book scanners are notoriously finicky but have to be up and running before we can really consider ourselves operational. Our Circulation Desks (which we will be calling “Service Desks,”) also have printers and debit machines that have their own configurations. And our self check-out unit needs to be ready to play a bigger role in 2012 as our customers get more familiar with its capabilities.

 

It’s a lot of work but it’s also a great opportunity. We get to do some of the basic maintenance that can sometimes get bumped down the to-do list and we’re looking forward to getting our new toys set up.

 

And we’re really looking forward to welcoming our customers back to the building to share the work that ‘s been done with them . See you on the 16th!

-PA

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