Monday, March 28, 2011

Microfiche Reading Room to Research Arcade: Library Transformation

Currently we have an entire room dedicated to microfiche in our library, it is a small room approximately 15ft X 20ft.  The room also houses typewriters, microfiche readers, and a copy machine.  While I have only been here a short time, I have never had a student ask for assistance with microfiche (I am sure you are all falling out of your chairs).

I have been informed however, that there are unique items in the microfiche collection, which will be moved to an accessible location (just not the prime local it is currently residing in).

The to-be transformed microfiche reading room.

My idea is to transform the microfiche reading room into a digital commons, a technology lab, or a research arcade.  Ok, so I have not pinned down the name for the space, but I do know what I want to put in there.  I want the small room to be multi-functional, sound proofed, and filled with consumer gaming consoles (namely Nintendo Wii, Xbox's Kinect, and Sony's Move).

The space should have improved lighting,  as it now has standard office florescent fixtures.  I am even considering padded gymnastic mats to cover the main "action zone" in front of the monitor to protect research participants from injury.   I also want the space to give students a quiet place to record pod casts, voice-overs, and other audio production projects (as currently there is no place on campus to produce these types of projects). 

I am currently researching "green" (read: free or low cost) soundproofing materials to cover the walls with, which will not only buffer the noise inside for an ideal recording atmosphere but also protect those patrons that are studying outside of the room from noise.  I recently watched a documentary on Link TV that followed a rock band in Libya that used discarded egg packaging on the walls of their jam room to conceal their music from government authorities.

While a few colleagues have made good natured jokes about playing Atari in the library, I have had a lot of interest and support from faculty and departments.  The truth is that while the gaming systems listed above are designed primarily for recreation, they are dramatically changing the way we are interacting with information both mechanically and physically.  Within our own campus and academic departments I can envision undergraduate research projects utilizing the space from areas such as Education, Art, Psychology, Philosophy, and Exercise Science.

I plan to update this blog as the project progresses, for now I just wanted to state my purpose and gather any input offered by the community "at large".

If anyone has taken on a similar project, I would appreciate any input or suggestions.- Thanks

*Information contained within these pages do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Schreiner University.

1 comment:

  1. Hi...!

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    Thanks a lots