A Publication of the Public Library Association Public Libraries Online

May/June 2015Volume 54, No. 3

july august 2015 column

The Wired Library – The User Experience

When we say “user experience” we are talking about something that can be measured. While user experience designers are motivated to make awesome things an decrease worldsuck, library stakeholders may not always understand the motivation behind user-driven decisions. For all they see, these changes may simply be about the visual look and feel of a website. The thing to stress is that user experience is plottable and predictable. User experience affects the library’s bottom line.

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Impact Survey: Measuring Your Library’s Impact

In October 2014, Impact Survey, a project of the University of Washington Information School (iSchool), launched its third release, the culmination of six years of work creating and refining a survey tool that empowers public libraries to easily evaluate how patrons use their services and also track the positive impact the library has on patrons’ […]

july august 2015 column

Pearls of Wisdom

They say that good things come in small packages and I have often found that the advice and wisdom of others that best stick in my brain come in small phrases and sound bites. Over the years I have accumulated many of these and thought I would share a few of my favorites below.

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Comparing Notes A Conversation about Library Service to County Jails

In this informal discussion, the authors share their experiences and ideas about working with and in local jail systems.

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Organizational Capacity and the Public Library (Featuring an Interview with Lexington (KY) Public Library Executive Director Ann Hammond)

Over the past two decades, “organizational capacity” has received considerable attention, and in May 2015 a Google search of the term produced about 455,000 results. Methods for assessing organizational capacity are available,1 as are guides to building it.2 At least one framework for building organizational capacity is available,3 as is an answer to the question of […]

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Quiet in the Library: Working with Introverted Personalities

Towards the end of her book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, Susan Cain sums up her advice to introverts. “Figure out what you are meant to contribute to the world and make sure you contribute it,” she writes, and advises, “Quit your job as a TV anchor and get a degree in Library Science.”1 There are some of us in the profession who may still blanch at this offhand reference to librarians as stereotypical introverts, but in the context of Cain’s book, which is informed with humanity, experience, and solid research, it is not in any sense a criticism.