The Labs poster at IFLA 2010

This was the poster our project had in the IFLA 2010 poster sessions.

Next, a description of the poster’s grand idea, and how it all worked out!

An interactive poster

The idea was to shake up the boundaries of what a conference poster means. We tried to do it in the best Web 2.0 tradition. In short: let’s present our project in a bottom-up, two-way, and engaging way. Let’s turn the situation upside-down and crowdsource some ideas from the visitors themselves.

So the poster is mostly blank, with 4 areas of pure white space for people to stick their ideas to using post-it stickers. We also distributed separate instructions, where we requested new ideas about library provided web-related services or even abstract conceptions of the library’s role in todays world.

And we had post-it stickers and pens!

The result turned out pretty egalitarian: at first we had thought about having a separated section at the bottom of the poster where we would present some of our own little projects. But then we decided to make it wiki wikier, and more consistent in a way: our own ideas would have no special status. Except of course that we had some to time to focus on the ”assignments” and write our own post-its.

Because ”share your ideas with us” sounds kind of vague all by itself, we had to conceive some framework as the starting point and the mental model to inspire ideas. We have thought for a long time that new innovations in library should happen at the interesections of the virtual and physical spaces, not so much in the traditional web. The strength of the library is in the place, the ability to bring the world of information and culture into a community of real physical space with people.

The intersections and interfaces are where things should happen. Hence the categories

  • Library space + web
  • Mobile + web
  • Mobile + Library space
  • Mobile + Library space + web

And yes, that last one is challenging! ;)

So how did it turn out?

We had our suspicions. We had a plan B. I admit, we cheated a bit. In case others didn’t share our enthusiasm for web-enhanced libary innovation, or were too overwhelmed by the whole IFLA experience to participate, we would post our own notes. And we did.

But there were some contributions! 9 to 10, depending on which ones you count. Ok, one was Bo sending Antti some greetings. One was a manual link to another poster nearby. We wrote 14 notes of our own.

But here they all are, sorted by category! If you have something to add, feel free to use the comment form! In the meantime, I think we’ll attach our poster to our workplace wall and use it as a tool.

Library space + web
  • Library space + web = a computer in the library
  • See poster #120! -Klaus [The poster in question was ”MEDIA SCOUT” – A new orientation and guidance system of the Philological Library of the Free University of Berlin
    Presenter: Klaus Ulrich Werner, Germany]
  • The physical library as and administrative User interface of the Library Web Presence

    Idea: The Library’s web site mirrors the physical library in real time

    E.G.: Special shelves have a web presence

    w/rfid, open web software
  • Project metadata on top of library space

    (catalog data, social usage data, directions, info, web data)

    implementation: projectors + flat displays
  • Use the social data from library systems!

    A real time display of recently borrowed books!

    (We have a working demo. Contact us:
  • A big multi-touch screen = Keyboardless UI for the library collections
  • An open library

    Make your libraries wifi hotspots! No passwords or other hassle
    needed – just an open connection
Mobile + web
  • Mobile + web = library app on the smart phone
  • iPhone APP iKirjasto

    Finnish nationwide mobile catalog with cover images & new books slideshow

    <Ready & released @ appstore>

    Implemented as a native iPhone app on top of a nationwide opac search
    ”frank” and its web api
Mobile + Library space
  • Display audiobooks with the possibility to ”send the audio book home”
  • geotagged info objects using the gps
  • Library tours on SMS
    For big libraries.
    When entering room receive a description of its collection.
  • The mobile phone = an intelligent libary card
    • provides identification
    • remembers history & interests
    • reminds of due dates
    • self service loaning

    (at an idea level)

  • Give librarians iPads

    No more library desks!
  • Expand the library to its surroundings via mobile devices

    (location-aware information about books that just became available nearby,
    events, free resources…)

    implementation: location-tagged feeds, notifications, push
  • Summer pop-up library at a park!
    Use the city space!
  • Webacm view of coffee queue on your mobile (via Mike Teets, OCLC)
Mobile + Library space + web
  • library for all, library in every place, library in every time
    —sigrid.k.weiss / Brazil
  • linked library data + linking to linked open data + delivery mobile
  • An augmented reality layer on top of physical lib items

    Identify things in the library w/ mobile phone camera
    use these works as a starting point for your exploration of
    other lib works and things in the wider web

These didn’t quite fit the above categories:

  • Instant translation of any materials
    including the indexing of materials
  • Publish your library catalog as linked open data
    more info:
  • We released the Helsinki metropolitan area catalog as OPEN DATA:
  • Hello Antti!
    See you in Aarhus later this year!
    Br. Bo, Aarhus ”was here”

End result:

That’s it!

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