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Library IT

We’ve all seen how the stereotypical “IT guy” is portrayed in the movies: Usually, it’s a bespectacled, pocket protector-wearing introvert who is good at technology but hopeless at understanding humans. But members of Johnson County Library’s IT (Information Technology) Team are very good at understanding humans, and specifically, how patrons use the Library’s technology. Their mission is to make it as user-friendly as it can be.

Point to anything in a Library that has a screen or connects with the network or a database, and the IT Team is responsible for the patrons’ experience with it.

In every stage of a project – working with vendors, evaluating technology, testing, acquisition and staff training – the goal is always to help patrons access the Library’s resources. When selecting technology, the team asks a lot of questions: Can this technology be more intuitive? Easier to understand? Placed in a more convenient location? What value will this provide to patrons?

The team has many projects going at any given time, most recently:

  • Scheduled replacement of public computers
  • Creating new process for updating and maintaining software on public computers
  • Working on a back-end upgrade of the public website
  • Upgrading interlibrary loan software which allows patrons to request materials from libraries throughout the country

One recent project was to make the catalog-only screens more ADA-accessible. The team noticed some of the screens weren’t at accessible height and that keyboards and mice were less user-friendly than modern touchscreens. Several models of touchscreens were tested for durability and responsiveness and ultimately the larger screens were chosen. As a finishing touch, the team made the catalog-only setups more aesthetically pleasing. Now, you’re not just seeing a computer on a desk – it’s more like a kiosk. Patrons will notice that the new catalog kiosks are more visible and easier to use to look up a book or author quickly.

If you see someone working on technology at one of the Johnson County Library branches, it’s most likely a member of the IT team. Be sure to give them a wave or tell them thank you because they are making technology faster and easier to use.


Local Music Reaches 250 Featured Artists!

Please join us in celebrating the 250 artists featured on Local Music. Started in 2015 and updated weekly, this project features interviews with the finest original songwriters and composers in the Kansas City metro area, samples of their music and their book, and recommendations from the our web catalog. Local Music provides a way for the musical artists living and working in our communities a chance to tell their stories, share their music and inspire others. With Local Music we seek maximum inclusivity, with a diverse selection of artists and musical styles as a way to represent the breadth of musical creativity buzzing in our collective backyards. Over the past almost five years we have covered artists from a wide spectrum of genres, from hip-hop, folk and death metal to indie-pop, experimental and new classical, and everything in between. Enjoy Local Music »


Featured Artist Friday

Oxford Remedy is a band that seems destined for greater things. Comprised of sisters Kate and Grace McKown and Sydney Aldridge, the band -- all teenagers -- makes the kind of indie-rock that wouldn't have been out place blasting out of car stereos in the mid-90s. While the band members are hard at work at school, they are finding the time to record and release an upcoming EP. We are fortunate to share an exclusive interview with the band about their creative process, book, movie and music recommendations and other things.



TBT. There be turkey!

It's almost turkey time! Well, you will have to wait a few weeks. The countdown has begun. Until the big feast arrives, we suggest browsing through all of the great Thanksgiving photos at

We just had to share this 1966 photo from the Wasiner family Thanksgiving. One child keeps her eyes on the bird. Another child keeps her eye on the birdwatcher. The others? Eyes forward for this wonderful photograph. Everyone has their priorities.

For even more history be sure to follow our hashtag on Twitter.


Changes to our eLibrary

Macmillan Publishing has recently made changes to its library eBook lending policies. We know our patrons may wonder what this is all about and how it will impact them.

In summary, Macmillan Publishing will be withholding library eBook sales for 8 weeks after the book's release date. With this in mind, you may find eBooks and eAudiobooks on retail websites like Amazon 8 weeks before they are available for libraries to purchase. This will not impact print books and CD audiobooks, which will still be available on the day of their release.

For more information or if you have any questions, please contact us.


Library Hacks!

This edition of the Did you hear? podcast explores Library Hacks! Get tips, tricks, and secrets that only Library insiders know about.  



Cedar Roe: Where'd They Go?

While Cedar Roe Library is having work done on its roof, Cedar Roe staff are helping out at various other locations.

Here's LeeAnn, an Information Specialist, helping to maintain the Career & Finance board at Shawnee!

Stay up to date with Cedar Roe!



Cedar Roe: Where'd They Go?

While Cedar Roe Library is having work done on its roof, Cedar Roe staff are helping out at various other locations.

Here's Carrie, who normally works as a Youth Information Specialist. You can find her temporarily helping out over at Shawnee Library, where she's leading some Baby Storytime on Tuesday mornings with some of our tiniest patrons!

Stay up to date with Cedar Roe!


Did you hear about the MakerSpace?

This week on Did you hear, our hosts Melissa and Dave chat with Nick Ward-Bopp, one of our MakerSpace Facilitators, about the great resources we have in the Black and Veatch MakerSpace at Central Resource Library. But the MakerSpace isn’t just at Central - we host Maker programming at various other locations, too!