Keeping Up with Emerging Technologies: Best Practices for Information Professionals

Keeping Up with Emerging Technologies: Best Practices for Information Professionals

I’ve just submitted the manuscript for my next book, Keeping Up with Emerging Technologies: Best Practices for Information Professionals. It will be published by Libraries Unlimited in 2017.

Methods, not specific technologies

There are many books and articles written for librarians about specific emerging technologies, but it’s hard to find a comprehensive resource for the best methods for keeping up and integrating new technologies into library services. So that’s why I’ve written this book.

This handbook covers a wide variety of methods for gathering information about new technologies, evaluating them, setting up experiments to help you match technologies with user needs, and finally how to recommend the use of new technologies in library services.

Using new technologies to make a positive difference in the lives of your users

The good news is that it is possible to deal with the information deluge without feeling constantly overwhelmed. In my 14 years working at the MIT Libraries (first as web manager/usability specialist, then as head of the user experience department) I had a chance to try out many different methods and techniques, and to benefit from the ideas of experts outside of our field. In this book I’ve brought together all of the most useful methods (tried and tested), in order to make this information easy to use in your library.

When you have a plan and a set of methods like these, you can design library programs and services that make a strong positive difference in the lives of your users. And you can keep up with the fast changing world of new technologies.

Who is it for?

  • librarians
  • educators
  • educational technology specialists
  • those with “emerging technologies” in their job titles
  • those who manage these positions and need to write job descriptions for them
  • library school students who want to follow this career path
  • those who are designing curriculum for this career choice.

Here’s the Table of Contents:

1. Introduction

  • Why this book?
  • Visionaries and implementers: two roles for this work
  • Challenges for libraries: technology staffing

2. Gathering information: sources and strategies

  • Introduction
  • Skimming and scanning
  • Newsletters, feeds, & groups
  • Multimedia resources: video, audio, and courses
  • Conferences and local events
  • Trend reports
  • Books
  • Popular culture and science fiction
  • Dealing with information overload

3. Gathering information: more strategies

  • Look outside your field or discipline
  • Categories of technologies
  • How far out to look
  • Visionaries and implementers – strategies for each

4. Gathering information: user needs

  • UX: User Experience
  • Types of user research
  • Examples

5. Inclusion, Ethics, and The Digital Divide

  • Following ethical debates
  • Diversity
  • Accessibility
  • The Digital Divide
  • Summary

6. Evaluating – On Your Own

  • Introduction
  • Letting ideas percolate
  • Note-taking
  • Curating information for others
  • Trends vs. fads
  • Summary

7. Evaluating – With Your Team

  • Hands-on play
  • Designing experiments and evaluating the results
  • Developing criteria
  • Project methods: design thinking
  • Project methods: agile, and “the lean startup”
  • Ideation methods
  • Summary

8. Moving Towards Implementation

  • Presenting to and persuading decision-makers
  • Passing on projects to implementers

9. Emerging Technologies Librarians – Defining Job Roles

  • Current job descriptions
  • Defining this type of position for your organization
  • What to do if you are a very small organization
  • Diversity and “performance-based job descriptions”
  • Template for your job description

10. Epilogue

  • Summary and conclusion

11. Resource Guide

  • Bibliography: books, blogs, articles, websites
  • Guide to mobile apps for keeping up with emerging technologies

Please spread the word by sharing this post, thanks!

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Mobile Apps News: stay current with mobile apps

Win a free book in my Goodreads giveaways

Win a free book in my Goodreads giveaways

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Apps for Librarians by Nicole Hennig

Apps for Librarians

by Nicole Hennig

Giveaway ends May 23, 2016.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Selecting and Evaluating the Best Mobile Apps for Library Ser... by Nicole Hennig

Enter Giveaway

Goodreads makes it easy for authors to give away free copies of their books in “giveaways” managed by Goodreads. I have 4 copies of Apps for Librarians, and 3 copies of Selecting and Evaluating the Best Mobile Apps for Library Services to give away.

The contest begins on Monday, May 16 and lasts for a week. On May 24 Goodreads will randomly pick the winners and I will ship your free copy (US only).

These are for print copies — Apps for Librarians is normally $45, and Selecting and Evaluating the Best Mobile Apps is normally $43.

Feel free to enter both giveaways!

Advancing accessibility with mobile

Advancing accessibility with mobile

Photo by Marcus Kwan (aperturismo on Flickr).

Natural user interfaces are making computing easier for all ages and abilities

The widespread adoption of mobile computing is a good thing for librarians who care about access for all. That’s because mobile devices make use of “natural user interfaces,” and those interfaces are making computing easier for people of all ages and abilities.

Success stories

Have you heard the many stories of success that people with disabilities are having with mobile apps? Here’s an example.

Todd is a successful businessman, entrepreneur, and public speaker. An accident at age eight caused a spinal cord injury that left him as a C4 quadriplegic. (more…)

50 ideas for creative uses of mobile apps in library services

50 ideas for creative uses of mobile apps in library services

App workshops, app guides, librarians + apps

There are many possibilities for using apps in creative ways in libraries. In my online course, “The Book as iPad App,”⁠ one of the assignments is to participate in a virtual brainstorming activity about this topic.

Librarians in my course are from school, academic, and public libraries, and this list is based on the many creative ideas they came up with. Since this course was focused on interactive book apps, the ideas are mostly about those. Feel free to imagine using these ideas for all types of apps.

The list is grouped into these categories: (more…)

Get a free copy of Apps for Librarians in my Goodreads giveaway

Get a free copy of Apps for Librarians in my Goodreads giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Apps for Librarians by Nicole Hennig

Apps for Librarians

by Nicole Hennig

Giveaway ends April 22, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

I recently learned that Goodreads has a feature where authors can give away free copies of their books in “giveaways” managed by Goodreads. So I signed up. I have 10 copies of Apps for Librarians to give away.

The contest begins on Monday, March 23 and lasts for a month. On April 22 Goodreads will randomly pick 10 entries from all who entered and send me your name and address so I can mail you your free copy. (USA & Canada only)

They don’t have giveaways for ebooks yet, so this is for a print copy. (list price: $45)

It’s not required to review the book, but if you’re a winner Goodreads will encourage it, and I would appreciate your ratings and reviews!

Enter here (or use the button above) — between March 23 and April 22.