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Alliance & Charlotte Libraries Get a Second Life: Library Services in a Virtual World Computers in Libraries Conference Arlington, Virginia April 18, 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "Alliance & Charlotte Libraries Get a Second Life: Library Services in a Virtual World Computers in Libraries Conference Arlington, Virginia April 18, 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 Alliance & Charlotte Libraries Get a Second Life: Library Services in a Virtual World Computers in Libraries Conference Arlington, Virginia April 18, 2007 Lori Bell, Alliance Library System Tom Peters, TAP Information Services Kelly Czarnecki, ImaginOn/PLCMC Matt Gullett, PLCMC (Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County)

2 The Launch Graphic in SL

3 What is Second Life? 3D virtual world ALS and PLCMC were the first libraries to be established in this new virtual world. ALS and PLCMC have 2 main projects: –adult Second Life and –Teen Second Life (for ages 13-17) Over 5.5 million registered avatars Complete online community: cultural programs, businesses, recreation, buildings, property, and services 5,000 visitors per day to the Alliance Information Archipelago 2-3,000 teen visitors a day to the Eye4You Alliance island Used for meetings, workshops, and education (e.g., ALA)

4 Avatars In Second Life, an avatar is a digital character that represents you in-world Avatars can walk, talk, fly, swim, teleport --anything you want your avatar to do Each participant creates an avatar –- tall, short, male, female, buffed or not

5 An avatar can have a belly piercing, look like a movie star or celebrity, or be a nerd!

6 The Birth of an Avatar

7 The Transformation of Puglet Dancer

8 Commerce in Second Life SL has its own currency – lindens $1 USD = about 350 lindens Can be used to purchase clothing, hair, houses, land, services, etc. Can run your own business Some people make a real life living in Second Life

9 Lets take a tour! Alliance World HQ

10 Info Island: Main Library & Welcome Center

11 Science Fiction and Fantasy Portal – books, podcasts, programs, sci-fi authors

12 Pantheon Performance Center: live piano concerts, student productions

13 Halloween and the Haunted Mausoleum: Giant, Readable Horror Books on Display

14 Cybrary Citys Open Air Auditorium: programs & education for librarians

15 HealthInfo Islands Medical Library

16 Imagination Island Rachelville – A place to celebrate the child in all of us. Contains a secret garden, a maze, childrens literature and information on childrens literature Vendorville – A place library vendors may display their products for the over 400 librarians in Second Life

17 Rachelville

18 The New E4Y Isle

19 E4Y Isle Art Gallery

20 New E4Y Isle Theatre

21 New Park on E4Y Isle

22 Services We Provide Reference Programs Exhibits (World War II posters, Alzheimers Disease, author Vachel Lindsay, Sept. 11 Remembrance) Collections (web resources, Second Life formatted e-books and audio books) Book and genre discussions Training

23 Why are Librarians in Second Life? This is a new professional frontier This is where many of our users and non-users are To attract new users to the traditional library through referral To investigate library services in virtual worlds To provide library services 24/7 To meet and work with librarians worldwide To learn and use the 3D web, the emerging web interaction interface

24 How It All Started April 2006 – First rented building, first small plot of land ALS and PLCMC agree to collaborate on project May 2006 – First island – Info Island I August 2006 – Info Island II donated October 2006 – Grand opening of Info Island I October 2006 – Eye4YouAlliance opens on Teen Second Life December 2006 – Eduisland built as rental for educators who wanted to work together and to be close to library December 2006 – HealthInfo Island built with NLM GMR consumer health outreach grant December 2006 – Cybrary City for participating librarians donated by Talis January 2007 – Sirsi/Dynix Announces Sponsorship of Info Island I and Eye4YouAlliance Island in Teen Second Life February Built Rachelville and Vendorville February 2007 – Put up new ALS building February 2007 – New opera building, ALA building, and machinima school

25 The weather is always great!

26 Challenges Funding and Sustainability Volunteer Burnout Partnerships are key Steep learning curve What library services do virtual world users want? What? Youre working in SL? Right … Robust hardware & Internet connection are essential No integrated audio and web yet Highly addictive and time intensive

27 What Have We Learned? Virtual world residents do want a library – we built it and they are coming in droves! Collaboration is the key and partnerships are essential Exhibits: very popular; events attract crowds SL is fun – fun factor as catalyst for amazing growth. The speed with which this is unfolding is unbelievable! People still ask for books in a virtual world ALS & PLCMC have received huge national and international attention – recognized as key innovators.

28 Whats next? Permanent virtual ALS staff working out of the ALS world headquarters! Likewise for PLCMC. More traditional info resources available e.g., audiobooks Pioneer meeting technologies to facilitate virtual meetings e.g., adding audio to meeting protocols Integrate Info Island & Eye4You into ALS & PLCMC daily operations so all staff are SL functional Actively promote the Alliance Information Archipelago Improve transportation around the islands e.g., people mover, better teleporting Create an Info Island for kids

29 Why is AIA/E4Y Good for ALS & PLCMC? Continues ALS & PLCMC traditions of being leaders in the library community Provides national profile and recognition as two of the most innovative library systems in the country Easier to recruit excellent board members and staff Easier to land big grants to provide better service for our members As requested by ALS members & PLCMC customers – testing new technologies and services re: virtual library services

30 Second Life/Info Island blogs Info Island – YouthTech Eye4YouAlliance blog –

31 Get Involved in SL/TSL: Contact Us Lori Bell (Lorelei Junot), Alliance Library System Tom Peters (Maxito Ricardo), TAP Information Services Kelly Czarnecki (BlueWings Hayek), PLCMC Matt Gullett (Ray Lightworker), PLCMC

32 Thank You! SirsiDynix, Talis, OCLC and other donors: For their support of Second Life Library and Teen Second Life Library. ALS Board of Directors and PLCMC Leadership: For their ongoing support. All the volunteers--teens and librarians-- from around the world.

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