CHICAGO – Some of our oldest public libraries were born out of mechanics institutes, and many of our newest public libraries feature makerspaces. A lengthy continuum of organizations now seems to share many similarities with today’s libraries. In her ALA Masters Session, “Mechanic Institutes, Hackerspaces, Makerspaces, TechShops, Incubators, Accelerators, and Centers of Social Enterprise. Where do libraries fit in?” at the 2015 Midwinter Meeting, Mita Williams will offer a field guide to these new spaces and point out the differences that make a difference. The session will take place from 11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 1.
Williams is a librarian at the University of Windsor in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. She is also a founder and board member of Hackforge, a community-driven hackerspace that got its start in the front room of the Windsor Public Library. She blogs at New Jack Librarian and can be found on various social networks under the name copystar.
The ALA Masters Series is a Midwinter Meeting chance to hear and talk to experts from across library specialties as they describe their latest in-house innovations in fast-paced sessions (to which attendees are encouraged to bring their lunch). These sessions offer insights into the hottest trends and how librarians are stepping up to them.