April 24, 2013 By News Staff
Libraries in America are changing, as proven by Bexar County, Texas, opening one completely devoid of books; the launch of the Digital Public Library of America, which aggregates resources from museums and libraries across the country; and Midland County, Texas, Public Libraries' new and improved Centennial Library, complete with digital signage touchscreens and an interactive card catalog.
And they're changing because they have to. The Web has introduced virtually limitless access to information, giving public libraries new challenges: "Online resources allow people instant access to books, magazines, job information and applications, health information and online classes. So how do libraries plan to continue engaging communities? In the face of new technologies, libraries are adapting to a new reality," according to CityTownInfo.com.
The aforementioned libraries clearly have it down, offering free computer and Internet access (including Wi-Fi) -- services that the majority of American adults think are very important for libraries to provide.
As for public libraries nationwide, the following infographic from CityTownInfo.com examines both their current use and the challenges they face as knowledge providers.
All over the country, community leaders are looking to boost economic development through various initiatives. One key element in many of those initiatives is the use of information technology. When local governments build IT infrastructure, create e-government applications, assist high-tech startups or otherwise focus on technology, they create conditions that draw businesses to their communities and help retain skilled workers. This paper discusses and provides examples of these various ways local government can use technology to ultimately make a community more attractive to businesses, visitors and residents.