CIL2008: Keynote on “Libraries: Innovative & Inspiring”

Erik Boekesteijn, Delft Public Library
Jaap van de Geer, Delft Public Library
Geert van den Boogaard, Delft Public Library
This session was a presentation and discussion of their Shanachietour 2007, in which they crossed the United States in an RV interviewing and filming librarians and patrons. They played a segment with the head of the NYPL, Paul _____, in which he talked about his efforts to “reoxygenate” the library.
Then went to the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County (Virginia) to talk with Matt Gullett (of the Imaginon) about gaming. “Containers” of information will change — but books aren’t going away. Technology will allow genres of information to find their appropriate digital (or analog) form. “The book is one of the best technologies ever invented, but it is a technology.” We forget that.
Next stop, Michael Stephens’ library school class at Dominican University. Brought up a library student from UIUC; she concluded her conversation with the filmmakers by saying that the best skill a librarian is to be open to change.
Ended back in Delft, at the Delft Library Concept Center (DOK) — a future-looking library. It still has books, of course, but also has all sorts of digital media and tools to use it with. Gaming, too, of course. The DOK is all about people, according to its director — people are the most important collection. From the video, the DOK has the feel more of a bookstore (à la Borders) than of a library: open, airy, inviting, and filled with people using the print and digital collections. Brings the digital into the library, rather than having the library be the access point to it.