Public Librarians should be UNWired

Location: Local Color (Free WiFi)

I'm IMing with Jenny and pondering her citation of Technobiblio's listing of WiFi spots around the Seattle Convention Center.

My take: Public Libraries should do everything they can to provide a computer -- a laptop -- for all of their librarians. (it's also a pretty snazzy perk in a job where there aren't bonuses and the like...) We have it GOOD at SJCPL, each manager gets a 15" Powerbook and the means to take it anywhere! I am proud of the group that is out here for PLA who brought their Macs. We need to be unwired, in our libraries for sure because you never know when an opportunity or "teaching moment" could appear with a patron or another employee. We need to use laptops at meetings as well. Our most recent managers meeting minutes were taken entirely on a laptop and then emailed to all after a bit of finessing.

We also need to be unwired at conferences like this. Seattle is ultra-tech, ultra-digital and ultra-unwired. Last night at Starbucks, I had 8 different wireless networks swirling around me (all but one was passworded). I think it looks good for the profession for we library-types to set the example that we are techie..."with it" if you will and totally blowing away the stereotypes.

I'm not saying we have to be chained to our machines and be totally geeky, but come on! (I do reserve the right to be totally geeky) At Internet Librarian, Liz Lawley chastised us about having laptops in the room and how different we seemed from "real" tech conferences, where participants were realtime blogging and IMing at meetings. We need to step it up a notch... I'm looking forward to hanging out between sessions and chatting with the UNWired librarians...

More later!

Posted: Wed - February 25, 2004 at 12:19 PM