Well, it has been a long while since the last time I updated anyone on anything regarding the pilot- job change and getting settled in a new town, coming int one’s own, living challenges and overcoming obstacles. I suppose, too, that this all depends upon anyone listening anyway. This was an experiment plain and simple- it was funded by the Northern Indiana Consortium of Computers in Libraries (NICCL) and at the very least, they are owed an update. For that extension beyond the normal bounds, and a willingness to fund the pilot, you have my infinite gratitude. Thanks for making this project possible.
The LITEBoxIN device itself is difficult to fit into any existing technological infrastructure, especially with WiFi a more common norm even at fast food restaurants. The technology of a controlled, curated open server for sharing files holds opportunity, though there was very little desire to discuss the project and the possibilities. I fielded at least one question from a customer asking why they cannot access the open internet, they signed on to “LITEBoxIN?” It fits within the auspices of experiment and trying to do something different with the best of intentions in mind. There is not a lot of room for side projects for many librarians, and additional responsibility of another thing to check was the least of our intention.
For all we know, these things are still plugged in and running somewhere in libraries in Indiana, and that is a cool notion- one day buried among the floppy discs and dead battery phones may be a curiosity some library worker might plug in one day. I am currently in the midst of writing this up for a professional journal, and stalled due to life priorities, the notion of open source, picking ourselves up by our bootstraps and making our libraries better for our customers and the libraries a better place to visit and to work. There is hope for the future, and know that you are not alone. You are not powerless, and with ideas and a willingness to fail, there are myriad ways one might make a difference in the library you love. More to come, everybody and please be a part of the solution together. If ever you decide you no longer can use the technology you were given for the LITEBoxIN pilot project, shoot me a message gaskill00(at)gmail any time, I’ve got ideas of further use for these with a single location. Let’s continue the conversation and try new things every day. Take care of each other.
All the best to you and yours,
I write this on the fringe of Beltane, with rebirth happening all around, and #Librarybox babies floating about throughout Indiana- that’s #LITEBoxIN, a grateful hello goes out to you. This #INLLA 2014 project has been a great learning experience, and it has been fun to be able to share Jason Griffey’s library hacked Pirateboxen with a few libraries and librarians along the way. There is a new image which is simple enough to upgrade to through Jason’s instructions over at librarybox.us- just click on “upgrade.” A few tweaks include a change to the user interface. It is ritzy.
While we are talking about updates, herein lies the opportunity to discuss being the radical, militant librarians I know you are- our very freedoms at a root level are being threatened by powers that be, Sounds like the FCC has jumped into the fray to prevent people from modifying these small routers for purposes like these, but that’s fine, only affects new routers, mostly on their list. As for your box, it won’t stop working or anything- nothing going on here, and what was done in the past is excluded from the new regulations. Check out eff.org for info on general stuff like net-neutrality and the “man’s” desire to “lock it down,” be it the internet, information or our matresses with those pesky tags only the owner is to remove… Let’s make an effort to #savewifi and allow neato projects like Librarybox to keep evolving with the user’s needs.
I kind of enjoy looking into the future, hollering into the void of large open and quiet places, and running headlong toward success and positive change regardless on its toll on our soul. I love spending time outside in nature and hope to be able to get out and see some using one of those cool #IndianaStateParks passes our libraries have ripe for the pickins. I have recently been offered the opportunity to present at the #ILFDistrict3 sub-conference at the beautiful Garrett Public Library. While life changes, as do our environs, we keep on keeping on, and we will see you on the flip side. Get in touch any time for more information… gaskill00 (at) gmail [dot] com
I have to say, what a great holiday season. Thank you for all you have done to support and give the LITEBoxIN a shot. I have been successful in upgrading to Librarybox 2.1, which makes the graphic interface a lot smoother. Perhaps we should look at upgrading after the pilot has landed. Bring free, open WiFi standalone server to your adoring public! Take it home and use it to share photos of family at the holidays. The sky is the limit, and it is only made possible by the efforts you have endeavored to persevere. Thank you, and here’s to a bright 2016!
Here is the haps, y’all. Pilot project is in motion. Thanks for all who attended the discussion at ILF in Indy! It was an honor, even if I was not able to pull off a build during the session. Rest assured, I let it run its course and, of course, it worked when I got it home. Go figure. So goes the live guerilla maker session at a state conference. Lesson learned, but the message was still transmitted in stereo.
Since there has been very little feedback thus far, and despite efforts to the contrary, speaking engagements, etc. anything short of giving up the daytime job to really push a concept like LITEBoxIN would be a stretch. I will leave that to the LibraryBox originators like Jason Griffey to carry on in the name of technology, fringe technology to as one possible solution to some of our most pressing library problems and present library solutions. We will continue to charge ahead and answer questions any time they arise.
As for how you use your LITEBoxIN, that is up to you. Some good ideas that came up during the ILF sesh include: Bicentennial 2016 Boxen, local history repository, live music storage and distribution, on-site guerilla programming solution abroad regardless of open internet accessibility (fairs, schools, community events, local historical society meetings). By and large, it was created to be a point for distribution of information, and it is exactly that and so much more, only limited by your fantastic librarian imagination. Of course, it can always be used as we originally imagined too- a distro point for librarian information technology education solution in a box for Indiana. Carry on.
We’ll be seeing you out there, and as always, excited to hear how you are using your LITEBoxIN.
Had a great time this morning talking about the LITEBoxIN with a group of progressive, forward thinking Small and Medium Size Libraries and the librarians who love them. We love you. Thank you for the opportunity to talk about libraries, librarians and one solution for staff training and easy access to library info anywhere, anytime. Here’s to you. Contact Jon or Austin to talk about the Pilot! We need you!!
Well, it has been a few months since we last spoke. Might be crazy to say, but I was going for radio silence, as sometimes there is that glimmer in which people get inspired and run with things. There were (un)limited expectations when we started this project- there is a problem and we aimed at one, not the only, solution. Sure, there was bound to be chatter, “I don’t get it” seems to be the consensus, followed by, “what would we use this thing for?” Every roadblock is an opportunity to overcome.
I/we are here to help and make a difference, which is the main reason I got started in the adventure that is librarianship in the 21st century in the first place. The LITEBoxIN is not the answer, nor does it have a lot of practical applications for what many librarians might consider everyday use unless one steps outside of the norm and uses one’s imagination. This much is true, but to me, LITEBoxIN represents a symbol, an opportunity to raise a question and start the conversation. What are your needs and how can we work together to meet the need?
I went for radio silence in order for folks to not be inhibited by preconceived notions, and to take this thing and do with it what you please sort of scenario. If you have an idea that might work, or a special local collection, LITEBoxIN is for you. If you want to try to do things differently, LITEBoxIN is for you. Do you want a central place for our users and staff to be able to access library fliers, brochures, calendars, coloring pages or music, movies and books in the public domain? LITEBoxIN is for you. Are you curious and like to daydream about the possibilities both day and night, LITEBoxIN is for you. Don’t forget to protect that copyright!
Please, help this pilot fly wherever it can and do whatever you will- there is no right or wrong answer, only more questions. “Do or not do, there is no try.” -Yoda and in this particular situation facing all of us in libraries, me too. Keep in touch, and let me know if there is anything I can do to help.
Sitting in a preconference ALA conference thing for Intellectual Freedom 101, and I am running the LITEBoxIN using battery power. I am amongst many, many librarians here- freedom fighters, people who believe in intellectual freedom and fighting censorship. I am amongst peers, colleagues, people who care enough to take time away from their personal lives and the daily grind to be a part of this annual conference. I consider myself blessed to be able to attend such an event, having gone to PLA in Indy 2014, I was immediately awestruck and excited. Now I sit, casting a signal with free content all over a conference hall which believes in similar goals, now all we have to do is chart the path together.