arg matey, ye should have been a pirate

Sometimes I try to think what a good alternate career would have been, and that's all I can come up with. Booty on the high seas. Eating endangered sea reptiles. All that sort of stuff.

Then I realize, you know, I probably am better off ordering books and fending off the public.

That would be a great way to greet people at the info desk, though. Or on phone calls. "Arg, matey. What might I be able to do for ye?"

When a patron loses it over an overdue fine, I could get on the loudspeaker (we have a loudspeaker) and yell, "Thar she blows, batten down th'hatches at circ!"

Okay. Spent a little too much time in the sun.

This is what I have to think about this week. I am moving the internet terminals. I am moving them so they are all together, because I think it will be easier to watch them. What I haven't figured out is if this really going to help. I think it is, in the long run. Honestly, the whole SurfControl issue doesn't sit right with me, and I want all the computers in a non-secluded location so that we can keep an eye that people aren't leaving nasty images on the screens. I think we're going to have to spend more time beating people off the one Mac, however (um, no pun intended).

Aye, here's the rub, matey: The Mac of course has no timed access software on it (yet). We do have it card access only. Right now it is in a far corner of the library, and people jump on it and use it all the time without authorization. Usually no one notices except the custodian, who likes to then go complain to everyone but the person in question. I am hoping moving it to reference helps that. I think it could go either way, however. It could get jumped on more. When reference isn't staffed, the info librarian is supposed to check the computers. I know, though, this doesn't always happen.

It's not like it's really hard to move it back though, I suppose.

The two internet terminals that are facing away from the reference desk are most definitely being moved to the desk facing towards the reference desk. Two reasons for this: yes, once again to make sure we can monitor a little more closely people breaking the internet policy. Second, because there is less room to congregate there. We have a big problem with hordes of teenagers around one computer. I mean, hordes. All looking at shoes on Google Images, yea verily, ye salty dog. One kid, in an effort to get me to print out some (he hoped free) color pictures of sneakers for him, told me he was doing a school report on shoes. Uh huh.

I overheard a patron (an adult) asking the YA librarian why our print outs were so expensive. It must have been so tempting to make something up.

Like, "We be saving up for a pirate ship, lassie!"

Comments

I found this item from vicomsoft.com while looking to see what's out there for Macs. I am not sure if this runs on OSX or not.

If you made people boot up in 9.2 then this does run on that. It sounds promising IMHO.

Vicomsoft has some other whiz-bang software that may do the timed access thing, but they look like overkill compared to surfdoubler. Maybe I'm wrong.

Here's one more possibility: http://www.crescendosw.com/itimer.html

Thanks, but I think I'll probably wait for OCS to roll out their Mac version of the software (presumably they're doing it in the next three months). Just to keep some semblance of consistency for both staff and patrons. People are still puzzled to death by the one time use numbers. Well, they're puzzled by the term "one time use." Sigh.

I will check this stuff out though, through serendipity, sometime much good comes. (Off pirates and on Yoda, am I.)

Well, this one apparently just updated today: http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/10851

Don't hold your breath about them coming out with a Mac version.

That looks like an interesting program, but wouldn't quite solve the problem at hand... Which is unrestricted use of the Mac, moreso than time. I guess I probably should have said that. It does look like it would be great in an environment like a college lab, or someplace with dedicated logins.

Here's the set up we have now: A person presents their library card, we take it (and hide it (seriously, we do)) and give them a big sign that says, "Internet 1". They go to Internet Computer 1 (the Mac, in this case) and plunk their sign down and get an hour.

We sign up for an hour, by the hour, and it's the only machine that we take formal phone reservations on.

They don't get their card back until they return the funny sign we give them (I thought about giving them funny hats, but that didn't go over well).

The problem we've been facing is not so much getting people off after an hour, like we were having with the PCs (they were just a free for all). It's the fact that people just jump on it, and don't actually sign up to use it. So we see them sitting there (sans big "Internet 1" sign) and have to physically remove them. Some people won't move.

I haven't looked at all the programs yet, but most that I've seen set up limits fine... But don't quite have the fine tuning of the one time use number. Perhaps the only way to really solve the problem is have the librarian log in and out the person in question on the Mac. Or for me to have the LAN connection handy to pull from the wall when someone won't get off the machine (I already have it so it's set Safari only).

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