I attended WiLS World last week and have some highlights and ideas to share with you.
Marshall Breeding, an expert in library automation systems, spoke about "The Next Generation of Library Automation and Discovery: Key Issues and Trends." Marshall has been following the trends in libary automation for years and his insights were eye opening. I liked his idea of Library Services Platform rather than an automation system. This would be more integrated and not focus soley on the collection. His passion and enthusiasm for his subject showed in his presentation.
One of my favorite presentations was Hackerspaces and Libaries with Jesse Vieau and Trent Miller from Madison Public Library and Chris Meyer from Sector67. Chris talked about the cool programs and things that are happening at Sector67 - I live on the East Side of Madison and I had no idea this was going on. There are possibilities for programming and partnership here, I think. Chris also brought some examples of things made with the 3D printers they have. Trent talked about Bookless, the Madison Public Library Foundation fundraiser held this past winter and how this experience is helping to shape the new library. Jesse talked about some of the programming (including Maker Programs in conjunction with Sector67) and programming space they're planning on at the new Central Library. It's going to be a very cool place to be!
Carson Block gave the keynote for the second day, The Great Library Swindle: Your Rights are at Risk. Carson talked about where libraries are headed - we're more than our books. He talked about the libraries in his community during the recent Colorado wildfires and how they assisted residents during the crisis. Carson talked about the library as an economic anchor in the community. He asked some hard questions, too. For example, "if libraries didn't already exist, would we invent them today? and Should books be our brand? Interesting questions to think about for the future of libraries.
If you haven't attended a WiLS World yet, I recommend it. This year, there were more programs geared towards public libraries.