Affordable Futures: High-tech, low-cost Library innovations

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Fri, 17th Nov 2017 - 1:00pm
MMIT Affordable Futures

The emergence of new technologies brings opportunities for Libraries and information services to improve and add value to the services that they offer.

However, it is not always clear how this can be achieved, or whether the cost of adding value can be met.

At this event you will hear about three practical, affordable, Library innovations and have the chance to try some of these technologies yourself.

Book tickets here :

1 - Creating low-cost VR for your Library

Antony Groves (University of Sussex Library)

For many of us, technologies such as 360 photography and Virtual Reality may seem like extravagances: what real value can they add to our library services and at what cost? The following hands-on workshop will demonstrate some of the practical applications of these technologies at the University of Sussex - from enriching our presence on Google Maps with 3600 photography, to making inaccessible parts of the campus accessible through VR. This workshop will also give attendees the chance to try creating their own low cost spherical photography and VR using Google Cardboard.



2 - Using Rasperry Pi’s in an academic Library Environment

Dr. Jon Knight (Loughborough University)

As part of a library refurbishment, Loughborough University Library were looking to increase the amount of digital signage in use. The IT team investigated the use of Raspberry Pi's for this, and found them to be cheap to buy, have low running costs (and energy usage) and more than capable of handling the demands of most display systems. The University Library now has a large number of Pi controlled display screens around the building showing information such as group study room bookings, PC lab availability and Library/IT Services generated news and promotions. The system has also been rolled out elsewhere on campus, often replacing expensive commercial digital signage systems. This presentation provides a background to this development work, details how the Pi's are used and managed and also provides some ideas for future uses, both within the Library and the wider campus.



3 - Making Library Makers - 2 Years in the Making...

Carlos Izsak (Education & Community Development Specialist and founder of Makercart)

Over the last couple of years we have been working with libraries helping them set up makerspaces with The Makercart: a customisable, portable, pop-up makerspace. The Makercart is designed to provide a way for organisations to support makerspace workshops and activities in a flexible and adaptable way. Some of the libraries we've been working with include: Guildford Library, Redbridge Central Library, Kent Library Service and the new Oxford Central Library. These libraries are in the process of setting up regular clubs/activities, most of them with a focus on children 8-13yo. We've helped them secure funding, trained staff and volunteers, ran events and provided advice and equipment. We'd like to share the success and challenges we've encountered and the direction we're moving forward. We'll give participants the chance to MAKE an LED card, experience making and get the chance to discuss with colleagues the role libraries can play in the maker movement.


1.00: Registration & networking lunch

1.30-1.40: Welcome by MmIT

1.40-2.25: Antony Groves - Creating low-cost VR for your Library

2.25-3.10: Jon Knight - Using Rasperry Pi’s in an academic Library Environment

3.10-3.30: Break/Networking

3.30-4.15: Carlos Izsak - Making Library Makers - 2 Years in the Making...

4.15: Questions and close

The Library

University of Sussex
BN1 9QL Brighton

United Kingdom