Top Tech Trends - 2017 Annual

Program Date & Time

  • Time, Sunday, June 25, 2017, 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
  • Location: McCormick Place - West, Room W192
  • Twitter hashtag - #ALATTT


Summary of Trends

Distance Charging
  • Inductive wireless charging built-in to devices built for charging. Will automatically charge
  • It’s expensive but it’s low tech with a big impact
  • Alternatives include charging spots (wireless charging furniture) compatible with iPhone, Android, and Windows phones.
  • Solves the problem of mobile programming
Cloud Computing
  • The perfect technology for the demonstration of economy of scale
  • Example: Georgia public library had 7500 public access computers around Georgia that were 5-7 years old. When replacing, went with google chrome box and net books.
  • Worked with Google engineers and LibData (3rd party vendor) to incorporate time and print management into the Chrome OS
  • 1500 machines (cloud computing), hosted from a desktop from an IT office
  • Typically $125 a piece
  • Barrier to adoption is low
Open source disruption
  • Libraries spend 1.8 billion dollars world wide in technology.
  • Open source movement in the US, now there are about 12% of US public libraries using open source and 4% of academic libraries.
  • Uneven access to technology
  • Even in the richest countries in the world, there are hundreds of libraries who don’t have automation systems and have websites from the mid-90’s.
Makerspaces in Libraries
  • Should meet the needs of patrons and built around the budget and staff
  • Experiential learning happening in the library
  • It’s really easy to see how these technologies support entrepreneurship. Prototypes can be created with the same quality of a manufacturer.
  • Space is as valuable to users as they know how to learn to use it.
  • Makerspaces can include but are not limited to:
    • Embroidery machines, sergers, sewing machines.
    • Multi-media makerspace speakers, 360 video creation, virtual reality content creation.
    • Traditional fabrication tools (glue guns, Laser cutting, sauntering bar, sewing machine bar
    • Lending 3d printers, circuit scribe
    • SLS (Selective laser centering) 3D printers - Box comes with box of dust (metals, other particles) you can melt with a laser
    • SLA printers - uses light to solidify resin. Flexible resins, castable resins, tough resins
    • Laser cutter can facilitate prototype … paper cardboard plywood (dirt cheap $3)
    • PCP Milling machine - carves up circuit boards.
Social Media Outreach - Reaching out for Input
  • You can use social media to reach your communities and show them what you have to offer. You can use your social media community to collect information on what your communities actually want from you.
  • Social Media is designed to have a 2-way conversation with your community. React, respond!
  • It’s crucial to have separate content models for all mediums you are using.
  • Consider social media as ad hoc communication to engage communities, interact with them to have conversations with in your communities.
  • An “asleep” social media account can be harmful to your library.
  • When you engage, don’t be afraid to show personality.
  • Keep it alive.
Open Licensing - Library Data all over the Globe
  • Great benefits of open licensing come from classical as well as digital content. Open means open access as well as open data; don't only make your "typical" library content available open access where you can, but also license any library data you can provide. This will enable and facilitate research with your data, especially in the digital humanities.
  • Many countries don’t have fair use clauses, that’s where open licensing comes in so that you can facilitate people from other countries to use what you have to offer.
  • Key to success for use and reuse of your resources is the popularity of the license (creative commons). Use the best known things. The license is only useful to potential users if they can recognize it at first glance: That is the key to successful licensing because no one reads legal text (NO ONE).
  • Awareness of the importance of licensing alone will not get your content licensed. You need to dedicate staff to taking care of licensing, or it won't happen.
  • In the digital age, your data open licensing is your treasure.
Ebook innovations
  • Example: - geolocated ebook platform - eliminate friction with authentication by IP addresses. Pop up picks reaches people where they are by bringing the library to them through geolocation. Also attracts new users to the library.
  • To date we have had print solutions for digital problems for ebooks with the one copy/one user model which creates long holds for titles in libraries. This frustrates the patron and sends them to the seamless access of the retail model and away from libraries.  The Pop Up Picks collection easily delivers titles to users when they open up the app.
  • Libraries know what people read and need. We need to leverage our expertise in this area  to create a unique value proposition for the public to attract more users to libraries.
  • Pop Up Picks is a partnership across different industries between a library consortium (the Reaching Across Illinois Library System), the largest distributor of independent publishers (Independent Publishers Group) and a tech company (BiblioLabs).  It is a cutting edge collaboration to cultivate lifelong readers. This is our common goal across these industries: to create lifelong readers.
  • Collaborate for innovation: Libraries -distributors-publishers-authors-bookstores-ebook platform vendors.
  • Reaching readers where they are (on the go, set for commuters, read things on the train).

Panelists Bios

Margaret Heller

Margaret Heller (Moderator)
Digital Services Librarian, Loyola University Chicago

Margaret Heller is the Digital Services Librarian at Loyola University Chicago. Margaret works on web development, scholarly communications, discovery systems, and digital preservation at Loyola. She researches and writes about those topics as well as community-driven projects and issues for working parents. She serves on the board of the Read/Write Library Chicago, is the LITA Committee Chair Coordinator, and serves on the LITA Communications and Marketing Committee.


Emily A. AlmondEmily A. Almond
Director of IT, Georgia Public Library Service

Emily started her career at CNN as an “Information Wrangler.” Yes, that was the real title. And it was apt, because that’s what she’s been doing ever since. After CNN, she worked at Emory University as a systems librarian and then at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as an archive manager and a project manager for She started at the Georgia Public Library Service as a Software Development Project Manager and is currently the Director of IT. While in these roles, she has experienced the ways in which good project management can transform an organization and further, the ways in which  smart, quality leadership can apply project management principles to achieve strategic goals. 


Marshall BreedingMarshall Breeding
Independent Consultant and Founder, Library Technology Guides

Marshall Breeding is an independent consultant, speaker, and author. He is the creator and editor of Library Technology Guides and the online directory of libraries on the Web. His monthly column Systems Librarian appears in Computers in Libraries; he is the Editor for Smart Libraries Newsletter published by the American Library Association, and has authored the annual Library Systems Report published by American Libraries since 2014. American Library Association, Library Journal from 2002-2013 and by He has authored nine issues of ALA’s Library Technology Reports, and has written many other articles and book chapters. Marshall has edited or authored eight books and regularly teaches workshops and gives presentations at library conferences on a wide range of topics.


Vanessa HannesschlägerVanessa Hannesschläger
Researcher, Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities/Austrian Academy of Sciences

Vanessa is a literature and digital humanities scholar working at the Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. Previously, she worked at the Literary Archives of the Austrian National Library on the project Ernst Jandl Online ( Her research interests include the transformation of archives in digital space, data curation and modelling, content management, legal and licensing issues, and outreach. Her e-book on “A change of perspective in digital projects of literary archives” is to be published in late spring 2017 by Ripperger & Kremers, Berlin. Learn more about Vanessa at


Veronda PitchfordVeronda Pitchford
Director of Membership and Resource Sharing, Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS)

Veronda J. Pitchford is the Director of Membership and Resource Sharing for the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS). She manages the eRead Illinois Axis 360 shared ebook collection that serves over 400 libraries across Illinois and the regularly curated PopUp Picks program which lives on a statewide geolocated frictionless platform called Biblioboard. She works nationally with library consortia, vendors and publishers to position libraries as the rock stars of econtent in the communities they serve. Along with her Power of Libraries consortial posse, Veronda is committed to experimentation, innovation and advocacy for libraries in the econtent world. She was named an LJ Mover and Shaker in 2005. She is a die-hard library chick.


Tara RadnieckiTara Radniecki
Engineering Librarian, University of Nevada, Reno

Tara Radniecki is the Engineering Librarian at the DeLaMare Science & Engineering Library on the University of Nevada, Reno campus. She’s developed and continues to help manage various services in the library makerspace, including 3D printing and other large prototyping equipment, a lending technology collection, and innovative consultation services to teach users skills needed to fully utilize the makerspace. Her current research interests are in maker literacies and how academic libraries can support innovation and entrepreneurship.


Contact the TTT Committee