9/21/11

Centers for New Information Technology

I am very pleased this month that the Pueblo City-County Library District is unveiling its Centers for New Information Technology.  The Centers are located at both the Rawlings Library and the Barkman Library and feature public availability of new digital wireless information devices such as the Apple iPad2 and laptops.  Customers now have the opportunity to check out these items free-of-charge for use either in the library or outside the library in the comfort and convenience of home, office or school.
Our mission at the Pueblo City-County Library District includes the notion that public libraries are vital to insuring free and open access to information.  This principle, in turn, is one key to the success of our American democracy.   More and more, this is turning out to mean the library plays host to a variety of emerging information formats.  This, of course, is in addition to the venerable book.  The idea that information comes in forms other than books is not new.  Our library has supported access to information in microfilm and microfiche, video and audio cassette, and, in recent years, via computers, to name only a few of the formats.  We are pleased now to unveil yet another stage in the evolution of information delivery via the library.  Now, you can check out wireless e-readers, laptops and electronic tablets. 
This is an important step for the library and our community.  Insuring that everyone has access to the latest in wireless digital information technologies helps bridge what some have called “the great digital divide.”  This is the gap between individuals at different socio-economic levels with regard to their opportunities to access information technologies.  While this gap has narrowed recently, it is noteworthy that recent studies show that 41 percent of all adults still do not have access to the Internet through wireless connections.  Our hope is the Centers for New Information Technology will help bridge this divide.
This project is provided with special help from the United States Department of Commerce, the Frank I. Lamb Foundation, and the Friends of the Library.  We are grateful for their assistance.  Without it, we would be longer delayed in making this service available to the members of our community who need it.  I also would like to thank a core group of library employees who helped steer this project, including Richard Tucey, Bill Seidel, Andrew Bregar, Steve Antonuccio, and Carol Rooney, among others.
I encourage you to visit or contact the Centers for New Information Technology at either the Barkman Library (562-5680) or the Rawlings Library (562-5601) to “check out” the new service. 

LOCAL HISTORY AT THE LIBRARY by Jon Walker

Our community enjoys a rich and diverse history.  This is the story of the people and events helping to shape the saga of this region over ...