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Components of the library
The "Ins and Outs" of the Library system
By now you should know what a library is. This system lets you borrow books without paying as long as they are returned on time. Amazing, right? Although there is much more to the system then this. There are many different parts beneath the surface of a typical library that help the system function correctly (both mechanical and not). And, as time goes on, libraries will continue to evolve as they have in the past. Overall the this prezi will illustrate the components of the library and a prediction of their future.
The Library: Past to Present
Libraries began as a collection of texts ancient civilizations as old as 2600BCE kept in temples. In those days the process of paper (or slate back then) to book to library was painfully inefficient. Scribes would have to first copy the text by hand, then it may take weeks or months for it to get to the correct library (which is why it was rare to have books that were not historical records) . Not to mention the possible errors in the scribes writing or the chance of it being lost in transportation. Here in the present, with the invention of the printing press and motorized transportation, printing and shipping books has become much faster, cheaper, more accurate and accessible. With mechanical muscles like these, less and less people are need in this procedure. 1 book copied by 100 people taking who knows how long can all be replaced by one machine taking less than a hundredth of the time. Just recently the central library introduced their new self check-out station which now substitutes for several people who did this job. Libraries now require a lot less people.
Within the common library, several parts work together in order for the system preform at it's best. Each part varies in purpose but are often categorized as mechanical or non-mechanical.
A mechanical component of a system involves the physical parts, objects that work to accomplish their goal. Things like the facility used, computers, self-checkout, books, cards and vehicles all fall under mechanical because they follow these guidelines. The building holds the books, the books are read by people, the computers are used for research, the checkout let's you borrow, the vehicles move books from library to library, and the card gives you access to it all. Each of these things can be touched which is why they are categorized under mechanical.
Mississauga Central Library
While the term non-mechanical generally encompasses the parts of a system that cannot be felt, humans are also included. Libraries require many people in order to work. Both consumers and staff must be present if a library is to be successful. The staff (more commonly reffered to as librarians) are the people who keep the library in good condition. They organize the books, clean the building and assist consumers. On the other hand, consumers (people with library cards)are the people who borrow the books. If there were no consumers, there would be no reason for the system to exsit, because no one would use it. By working together, consumers and staff brought about the library system.
Consumer (citizen with a library card)
Other parts that are considered non-mechanical include the hours of operation and the borrowing system. Since these two are concepts (ideas that cannot be touched) and still work with the system as a whole, they are considered non-mechanical components.
In the library system there are several social factors that, if added can increase the probability of success. Most of these factors are just common sense. Take a look at the Central library. It is in the heart of Mississauga, a very densely populated area. The library is also located beside major roads and has a bus stop about 30 meters away. A library can also employ a small number of people. Since it is so convenient it's only reasonable it's popular. And with no other large libraries close, there is no competition either. Another place that is reasonable to put a library is in a school. Even if there are not many people surrounding the school, it is known that a large demographic of students will use it because they need books for their studies. Social factors like these are what govern a systems success.
This maps shows all library locations in Mississauga. The central library (#1), while relatively close to libraries like Cooksville and Mississauga valley (#5 and #13), has no competition. This is due to the fact that those libraries are puny compared to the Central library and that the Central library is the one closest to Square One (a large shopping center that attracts many people).
Self Serve Check-out machine
In the future, I believe it is possible that libraries may go extinct. While not right away, the internet may replace the library, if the library does not join. A large portion of people who visit the library are students and citizens who enjoy reading, so if these groups stop coming they will go out of business. Since the internet and "ebooks" are able to provide students with information, and people who enjoy reading good material, there is less incentive to go to the library. It's hard to compete with the internet but as long as the library remains free and keeps receiving good material it may have a chance. Libraries also lot you borrow audiobooks, which shows how they attempt to keep up with technology. Another possibility is that there will be an online library (although it may be difficult to generate profit).
Ruins of the library of Alexandria, one of the oldest libraries
A modern library
A condensed list of social factors that affect the library:
demographic of people (do they need it)
By: Carmela Duckworth
( 3 points connecting to humans need not apply)
Point 1: When robots are cheaper they replace humans
With the recent addition of the self serve check-out this point has become even more true. The humans must have cost more or else they would not have been replaced.
Point 2: In order for humans to be replaced robots just have to be better, not perfect
Using the self-serve checkout as my best example, the checkout teller at the central library used to take lots of waiting in line, but the machine is so much more efficient and simple to use making it the obvious choice. It may not do everything but it's better than having a person do it.
Point 3: Machines cause people to lose their jobs
Due to machines like computers monitoring the system and self checkout systems taking care of checkouts, the need for librarians have decreased. Soon enough there may be only a select few of librarians watching 100's of machines that do the jobs they used to do.
2 different technologies derived from paper books