Libraries and Makerspaces: a match made in heaven

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4 Responses to “Libraries and Makerspaces: a match made in heaven”

  1. ebbedie says:

    This is a great article, and very much what we’re working towards at my library: http://www.innisfil.library.on.ca/  We’re hoping to have a dedicated hackerspace soon!

  2. Michael Polo says:

    I like the idea of a public institution that encourages both theory and practice (learning and making).

    It would be tricky to justify public funding if the level of participation was too low, so getting large groups of people into making would be essential (and probably very difficult) but should be worth the effort.

  3. Christopher says:

    I’ve met Mr. Blowhard. He was the director of a major institutional library. He predicted, in the late 1990′s, that the Internet would make physical libraries obsolete within the next decade. In describing his vision he kept emphasizing the money that would be saved if libraries no longer had to maintain a physical building, and no longer had to buy books, because, he said, most researchers didn’t need a whole book. For their research they usually needed, at most, a paragraph. Imagine, he said, the money that would be saved if libraries could stop spending dollars on books that would sit unused on the shelves and instead spend pennies to buy a paragraph, a sentence, or a single picture.  

    I think the idea of libraries “as community hubs” is wonderful, and while I’m a strong proponent of libraries continuing to acquire and archive books and other print materials, I just as strongly believe that libraries can and must serve multiple purposes. They must serve the community.

    However let’s not overlook the fact that Mr. Blowhard’s attitude is very appealing to those who see libraries as nothing but a money pit. And serving multiple purposes, in spite of the benefits, is going to be even more expensive than just being a book depository.

    This article does a really good job of selling the idea of libraries, but are enough people willing to buy it?

  4. Derek Attig says:

    I argued last year on bookmobility.org that library makerspaces make sense because libraries have always been about creative, productive engagements with information. Reading isn’t a passive, uncreative process!

    Read more here: http://bookmobility.org/post/28917606989/makingreading

    And here’s a post I wrote for Boing Boing’s LibraryLab on how one mobile makerspace is adapting the bookmboile model to the maker revolution: http://boingboing.net/2012/08/20/sparktruck-taking-making-on-t.html

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