The CiL June issue might as well said on it, "You will use every article in this magazine at some point or another."
The introduction by Kathy Dempsey mentions some challenges that systems people face. She says, to paraphrase, "You may face one or all of these challenges."
Shoe, sitting in back half asleep, suddenly wakes up and starts yelling, "Me! Me! You're talking about me!"
I wish we had the budget and the layout that we could have used DiscoverStation. Basically it's a Linux system that runs off one PC and powers about ten thin clients as internet or whatever kiosks. It's Linux, dammit, what's not to love? Looks a lot like it runs a desktop similar to Gnome (and does use the Galeon browser). If we ever have money to revamp the whole system, I'd love it.
But the truth of the matter is, I'm tied to the server we have until it's useful life is done. I was hired about a year too late. I would have spent our new computer money (if in fact my new computer request went through) on this, but there are a few things against me.
The staff really needs new computers. Not the public. The library can't run properly without the staff having functioning machines. The library can run, believe it or not, with only three internet terminals. Or, if the systems librarian has the black plague, and our license is out, no internet terminals. Indeed it can. I drove by work today, and the library was still standing.
Our library was built in the mid-nineties, and no one really knew where the PC was going at that point. Well, some people did, but not our architects. The building is wired, yes, but not wired particularly logically (sigh) or well. So that limits us greatly.
The DiscoverStation sales rep that contacted me awhile back was nice... but I had to turn him down for the above said reasons. And cost. Sure, it's probably cheaper in the long run. In fact, I know it's cheaper in the long run. But with what we've got invested and what we've got to pay, it wasn't worth it.
So I'm eagerly awaiting my new boxes. I imagine they'll be here in a few weeks. Then I can take the middle of the road boxes that we have and shove two of them out on the floor for word processing, and maybe one more internet terminal.
I am hoping, believe it or not, that the little problems we have been having with the internet users' behavior continue a bit... I want concrete proof that taking away the table from the reference area will not effect the crowding behavior we get.
Because face it, what's a reference area without a place to plant your butt?