Many thanks to Jen Bishop (Carroll County Public Libraries), Don Undeen (Georgetown University), and Liz Sundermann (Baltimore County Public Libraries) for being the stars of the inaugural ALA RUSA Emerging Technologies Section Tech Showcase.
What started as a good and simple concept fortunately developed into a useful and interactive workshop at ALA that provided benefits to libraries of multiple types. With a focus on, of course, technology and patron interaction, this initial event was well received by librarians and participants from a variety of backgrounds. From the relative simplicity of soldering and digital fabric patterns to the building of physical hardware and the use of VR tools, there was a bit of everything for public, academic, and special libraries alike. A combination of presentation and hands-on demonstration proved to be popular, with a room for 200 filled to capacity (and then some). The ability to interact with the speakers following their excellent overviews was also well-received, with next year’s goal being to provide a longer session for a bit more of both elements.
It is the hope of the RUSA ETS team that this continues to develop in quality and reputation and the committee looks forward to more events at future ALA Annual Conferences.