Sorry for the delay – here are some of my notes from last Tuesday’s MLibrary2.0 Gaming session.
Eli Neiburger: Gaming in the Library?
Eli is from the Ann Arbor District Library and you can find his presentation here.
Eli did an excellent job of describing and putting gamers in context. I think it’s an interesting area that is often overlooked when we think about what activities our patrons (and future patrons) are interested in and how we might use those interests to promote the library.
“Email is how you talk to old people” – AADL gamer
According the Pew Internet & American Life Project, the second most popular activity of those polled (ages 12-17) was gaming at 81%. [I also just came across this Trendspotting blog entry: 1 out of 4 online users are online game players: facts you should know so I think its quite clear that this is an area we ought to pay more attention to.]
- Gamers are very accustomed to dealing with complex interfaces like those used in online role playing games like World of Warcraft. They expect ubiquity. They expect everything to do everything – from water fountains to websites and wifi.
- Content from peers has a higher value than anything else. “Authority” has spent their authoritative capital.
- There are games that some faculty are starting to take an interest in as tools for learning. For example, SimCity and Civilization can be used to teach history, economics, city planning, etc.
- In a study by OCLC: College Students’ Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources, Libraries were rated more trustworthy and accurate than search engines but search engines were rated much higher than Libraries as being more convienient, easy to use, cost effective, reliable and fast. [oh my!]
- Establishing the Library as Third Place. Eric Frierson goes into some detail on this as well as the event in general.
- The Ann Arbor District Library has a blog on it’s front page to share info from the Director, about events, programs, and the collection. Eli said one of the great things about this is that it acts as a sort of focus group because they can get immediate feedback about what’s going on via patron comments.
Jane Blumenthol – Second Life
Jane is the Director of the University of Michigan Health Sciences Libraries where they are working on extensive plans to use Second Life in conjunction with the Medical School. They are planning a whole campus for medical school related events. There will be 3-D models that can be explored and simulations of patient consultations so med school students will have an additional way to practice their bedside mannor.
Her presentation isn’t available online yet, but see her del.icio.us account for many Second Life related links.
Lisa Head of the U of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Undergraduate Library and spoke about Library 2.0 initiatives. I found this to be an especially inspirational talk because she talked about the technology and being brave, passionate, decisive (just do it!), willing to change your mind, attaining a state of continuous evolution, funding the future, and saying “yes.”
UIUL developed a browser search bar for their catalog, website, and google. They were the first to develop a Facebook app for searching their opac, and they feed their twitter and various blogs into the library’s home page. They circulate games and hold tournaments.
Lisa also gave some great advice for when dealing with innovation: be careful not to put too much importance measuring success. It doesn’t operate like it might with circ & reference stats. Sometimes just trying something new is successful.