Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cloud Computing’s Impact on Library Services

Roy Tennant
Internet Librarian – October 26, 2010

What are some reasonable roles for Cloud Computing
Makes us think about technology and how we use it – and what some of our options are.
Technology that makes Cloud computing affordable
Inexpensive commodity servers – add them as needed


We used to need a separate box for each operating system and separate applications. Now we can slice and dice a single server that has multiple operating systems and applications that run on each of them

Companies like BitNami that host our system.

One simple download to install the various components of a bigger set of applications.

Wikipedia - Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software and information are provided to computers and other devices on-demand, like electricity.

  • Infinite, immediately available computing power. No more technical requirements
  • Computing power has become a commodity
  • Amazon web services ec2 – Electronic Cloud Computing
  • No commitment to hardware
  • Inexpensive
  • Ubiquitous information – from any device

Innovation – iPhone

An Agile Approach to Library IT Innovations

May Chang – Head of Library IT Services

Library Hi-Tech article - When to be Agile – 1995
Agile Manifesto
Individuals and interactions - Over processes and tools

Working software - Over comprehensive documentation

Customer Collaboration

Agile Principles

12 principles
Crystal Method
People differ in working styles
Alistair Cockburn – Crystal family of methodologies because every project is slightly different and needs of its own
Putting into practice

Leader – change manager, ability to adapt to change, a facilitator rather than an ultimate authority

Members – cross-functional motivated, team player


Mind map instead of bullet points – so no one part is better than another
Thinking wall – white sheets – static cling to wall – write w/ markers – not restricted by the size and location of the white board

Task Board – use sticky notes

Think outside the box – but make it work inside the box
Website – make it work for new students – music, sound, movement – but parents, funders, faculty will also be looking at it – so need to provide some guidance

Mobile version

Roving Reference & Patron Notification
John Blyberg

Reference desk like a WWII pillbox –
Created a lightweight Reference desk – more open – inviting.
New space was wireless
Smaller tools – netbooks – to be roving to assist with reference as they walked the stacks and the reference room – wireless phones
Netbook is small – but still awkward – what else can you work with -
The OPAC is there – so make it an access point for reference staff.
But where is the staff? Users couldn’t find the lightweight reference desk – because it was so small in scale. And the staff was roaming – not at the reference desk. What to do?

Pagers didn’t work

Vocera – lavaliere communicators
Restaurant pagers – but that’s the reverse of what they needed

Life alert bracelets


  • use existing tools
  • fit into workflow
  • simple to use
  • effective
  • reliable
  • Fast – software for a notification router – download and host on local server – open source software

Can use email, IM, or Prowl (an onscreen notification system)

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