Sunday, March 2, 2008

Modern Marvels -- Library Edition

Much time and energy are now being consumed by the process of moving back into a remodeled and expanded library building. There just isn't enough "juice" left to hold onto more than one coherent thought, so how about we just give up and explore the new building? Since my camera phone is stinking slow and has pitiful-little memory, this is the only image I could capture. Just kidding. The decor of the remodel is very contemporary -- we auctioned off the dusty old nooks and crannies on Ebay -- and this is one of the outstanding features of the new look. There are six of these fabric art pieces suspended from the beams of our ceiling, hovering over librarians and patrons alike.

Another feature is the Great Hall, a wonderfully large open area in the center of the building. Here's a view looking north. You can also see a couple of the motherships in this photo. Impressive, eh? And in the background, the same beautiful windows we've always had, although the fire marshall required the removal of several of our prize fir trees.

It's exhausting and invigorating to move. There is a lot of work still to do, as we've only been in the building three days now. I'm not counting, but I think we are due to open to the public in less than a week... One of the exciting features in our revamped back room is a computerized check-in and sorting system. Several of the libaries already have these, but ours is the first to have windows for the public to be able to (kind of) watch what's happening when they slip their materials into the bookdrop. I haven't tried to take any photos of it yet, because the back room is full of boxes and carts and things we don't know what to do with yet. But there's a terrific video of the Really Huge Automated Materials Handling Process at our system-wide shipping facility. This video is quite interesting, so here it is:

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