Want to see more library, archive, & museum content come to SXSW 2015? The SXSW PanelPicker is now open for public voting. 30% of the decision to pick a panel is based on public input, so sign up for an account, and get your votes in before Friday, Sept. 5! Feel free to add comments to the proposals to show additional support, and share far and wide! Selected panels will be announced starting Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. Below is a short list of SXSW 2015 LAM (Interactive and EDU) panels. See a more inclusive list here and don’t forget to vote!
The report, Opportunity for All: How the American Public Benefits from Internet Access at U.S. Libraries (pdf), is based on the first large-scale study of who uses public computers and Internet access in public libraries, the ways library patrons use this free technology service, why they use it, and how it affects their lives. It was conducted by the University of Washington Information School and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. A few statistics from the report here (based on a 12-month period):
- 40 percent of library computer users (an estimated 30 million people) received help with career needs. Among these users, 75 percent reported they searched for a job online. Half of these users filled out an online application or submitted a resume.
- 37 focused on health issues. The vast majority of these users (82 percent) logged on to learn about a disease, illness, or medical condition. One-third of these users sought out doctors or health care providers. Of these, about half followed up by making appointments for care.
- 42 percent received help with educational needs. Among these users, 37 percent (an estimated 12 million students) used their local library computer to do homework for a class.
- Library computers linked patrons to their government, communities, and civic organizations. Sixty-percent of users – 43.3 million people – used a library’s computer resources to connect with others.
My personal favorite:
- Nearly two-thirds of library computer users (63 percent) logged on to help others.
Cushing Academy library goes bookless. This year, officials at Cushing Academy, a New England prep school, have decided the 144-year-old school no longer needs a traditional library. “When I look at books, I see an outdated technology, like scrolls before books,’’ said James Tracy, headmaster of Cushing and chief promoter of the bookless campus. “This isn’t ‘Fahrenheit 451’ [the 1953 Ray Bradbury novel in which books are banned]. We’re not discouraging students from reading. We see this as a natural way to shape emerging trends and optimize technology.’’
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Or, I beg to differ.
See more on the debate here.