Staff Picks: Books

Staff-recommended reading from the KPL catalog.

KPL Open to All

At the July 21, 2008 Kalamazoo City Commission meeting, there was abundant citizen comment regarding a proposed ordinance designed to address security issues at the Kalamazoo Transportation Center. Commissioners approved the ordinance, but prior to voting, they heard dozens of people speak—for and against the measure.

One opponent urged commissioners to think about the challenges and barriers facing some of the people who would be affected by the ordinance’s time restrictions. He commented that for people without permanent housing, there aren’t a lot of options in our town. At “the library,” for example, “their time is limited.” This comment prompted me to clarify a couple of the library’s policies.

As long as visitors are using the library—reading, studying, using library materials or facilities or engaging in library-related activities—and abide by the library’s rules of conduct, there is no time restriction. Two hours of computer use is provided for patrons with a valid library card during any 24-hour period. Individuals without permanent addresses will be issued a free, renewable one-month card if they present a letter from a social service agency stating that he/she is in contact with that agency and resides in Kalamazoo. The library has long-standing, cooperative relationships with agencies such as Ministry with Community, the Kalamazoo Gospel MissionHousing Resources, Inc. etc. We do our best to provide a welcoming environment for all citizens.


Web 2.0

Admittedly, the term "Web 2.0" is overused and perhaps more often than not, misunderstood - as if it implies some form of "new and improved" (read different) version of something that most of us struggle to understand as it is. In reality, Web 2.0 is simply a catchphrase for new technologies and gadgets that add to the social side of the web - things like blogs, podcasts, webcasts, videocasts, social bookmarking, and on and on.

Need to catch up a little? Here's an interesting video that was put together by a Kansas State University professor of cultural anthropology, attempting to sum up Web 2.0 in just under five minutes.


On Friday, July 11th, Jennifer Cornell, KPL's technology trainer, will delve into the world of sharing and organizing on the web with a special educational event called Web 2.0 Topics - Blogging. Don't miss this unique one-off session!

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