BOURBON — Comfort and ease of use are the goals as the Bourbon Public Library re-evaluates its role and methods.
Director Heather Barron said: “The library is changing to keep up with the needs of its patrons. We already have 10 computer stations in place for public use, several of which offer Microsoft Office and printing capabilities.”
These stations are desktop units located on library tables. Usage on these stations is high.
“We are finding the need to re-evaluate space needs,” she continued. Increased library usage in general is creating a space problem for the library. At the same time, surveys indicate that much of the computer usage is Internet access—shopping, email, Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Twitter, video chat, Google docs, etc. Only certain patrons or certain usages require an office suite or a computer printer.
Enter the new Chromebook computer at the library. The Chromebook is a notebook-size unit which is light, portable, and easily usable on a patron’s lap as she sits in any of the library’s comfortable chairs or sofas. It is fully Internet-accessible, and prior battery charging makes electrical cords unnecessary. In short, it is a unit designed to fit into a library patron’s modern lifestyle.
The new unit was donated to the library, which is using it on a trial basis to assess patron needs. If warranted, future plans include replacing some of the space-eating desktop units with portable computers such as the Chromebook. The new unit must be checked out on a patron’s library card, and must be used in the library. The Chromebook does not support CD usage, but a user may save information on his own memory device (“smart stick”).
“The Bourbon Public Library is currently conducting a survey of patrons to determine future goals and directions,” said Barron. “Rest assured,” she continued, “that the Bourbon Library will continue to develop as patron needs arise, keeping the Bourbon area residents in touch with the modern world.”