Library Staff Day will be held on May 11, 2016! Be sure to register now by click HERE!!!

Photos from our Annual Meeting are now posted on our Facebook page!

Big thanks to all our members, special guests and to the Fort Myers Beach Library staff.

Read our current and past newsletters right here!!

The monthly SWFLN Continuing Education Newsletter is also emailed to member institutions and to personal affiliates.

Helping Libraries Provide Better, Faster Service

The Southwest Florida Library Network (SWFLN) is one of the five regional consortia of multitype libraries in the State of Florida. SWFLN serves the counties of Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Hendry, Lee, and Monroe.

SWFLN Recognizes Support

We honor a member of the community who has demonstrated exceptional passion in the promotion of libraries (Library Advocate); we commend an elected or appointed official for demonstrating remarkable support for libraries (Library Champion).

SWFLN Map of Florida Multitype Library Cooperatives

Florida MLC's present cost efficient, ongoing technology and training for all types of libraries: public, academic, school, private, and special; and provide even the smallest libraries with immense resource opportunities.

WISH Upon a Shell Program

Do you have an idea for future training? Do you, or a co-worker, need to learn about a specific subject? Contact us to submit your ideas, we can’t wait to hear from you!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Hendry County's Experience with SWFLN's Afinia H800 3D Printer!

My name is Dakota Marshall and I work at the Harlem Community Public Library in Clewiston, Florida. This library is part of the Hendry County Library Cooperative. The Afinia h800 3D printer was on loan to the Harlem Community Public Library from Friday, April 1, 2016 until Monday, April 18, 2016. During this time I mainly did programming, with the children that use the library, on how to design an object to be printed and show them how the printer works. For the programming I took the children that were in the library into our computer lab and used a program and website called Tinkercad. This program is used for 3D modeling. What I like about this program is even though you are building a design from scratch it's not like you are drawing it, the program has geometric shapes, letters, numbers, and symbols that you import in just by dragging and dropping onto your platform. After placing the object you can then manipulate it however you would like, you can make it shorter, taller, wider, longer, and you can also change the height, change the position, or place the object on top of another. Another feature that I like about this program is you can change your perspective to make sure objects are not floating in the air and that they are either on top of another object or on the platform. I had two main projects that the children worked on a name tag and a brick man. For the name tag I did a more standardized project. I gave the student the option of doing their name tag as a box or a circle. After that the students just spelled out their name on top of the shape they wanted. For the brick man project the students were able to customize it more. I let them choose what size the wanted, what color they wanted and if they wanted anything else on their brick man instead of just arms, body, legs, feet, and eyes.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Library "Success" Stories! "Tell us your story!"

Do you have a story to tell? 
Leave a comment below, or call SWFLN's Office Assistant, Lena Strode, at (239) 313-6338.

Friday, March 25, 2016

SWFLN's Afinia 3D Printer Makes Local Headlines while on loan to collier county public library!

Building in 3-D: Library class introduces technophiles to printing in three dimensions

Branch manager David shows class members his on-loan 3-D printer. A class at the Golden Gate branch of the Collier County Public Library explored the innovative technology of 3-D printing. Lance Shearer/Citizen Correspondent
Branch manager David shows class members his on-loan 3-D printer. A class at the Golden Gate branch of the Collier County Public Library explored the innovative technology of 3-D printing. Lance Shearer/Citizen Correspondent

Often, we think of the public library as the repository of legacy technology, going back to Gutenberg, "dead tree" books, and the printing press. But printing is in the forefront of modern techno wizardry, and in March, the Collier County Public Library system held a series of classes to help people get up to speed on 3-D printing.

"I'm an expert as of last Wednesday," said David Chalick, branch manager of the Golden Gate and Golden Gate Estates libraries, standing in front of a group of about 20 people who had come to the Golden Gate library branch for the class. Titled "Introduction to 3-D Printers," the session was designed to explore a manufacturing technique that, while still in its infancy today, holds vast implications for how all sorts of things will be produced in the world of tomorrow.

"We're borrowing this printer for two weeks from the Southwest Florida Library Network," said Chalick. "We've been trying it out, and so far it has worked pretty well."

He and library assistant Spencer Sneed showed the class some of the objects they had printed, on an Afinia machine Chalick described as a "hobbyist or home-use model," interfaced to a PC laptop. They displayed a miniature red plastic rosebud, a clockwork heart with parts that rotated into and out of shape in the manner of a Rubik's Cube, and a garish red skull perfect for your next Halloween party. All the objects were assembled from spools of plastic cord similar to fishing leader.

"Any shape, any geometry you can imagine, you can make," said Chalick — once you have digitized the dimensions and converted them into a three-dimensional algorithm. This is an example of where the math classes we are always told are crucial to maintaining the U.S. lead in technology are key. Luckily, it is not necessary to create the code from scratch; the Internet abounds with downloadable software to help create objects with your 3-D printer, and templates for "off the shelf" projects to plug in and print out.

The technology has already been used to create engine parts, medical devices including prosthetic limbs, edible food items, and even body parts made from living tissue. In the most infamous use of 3-D printing, it has been used to produce a gun capable of firing lethal bullets, also printed out from the 3-D printer. NASA commissioned a special 3-D printer designed to work in zero gravity, which was delivered to the International Space Station in December 2014, and used to build a particular wrench needed for a repair operation aboard the spaceship.

In the future, there is no way to know what will be created when a 3-D printer is turned on.

"It's the convergence of artificial intelligence or AI, robotics, infinite computing and digital sensors," said Chalick. "This is going to threaten all existing business models."

Futurists such as Jeremy Rifkin have called 3-D printing the "third industrial revolution," a game-changer comparable to and taking the place of the assembly line production manufacturing that dominated industry starting 100 years ago. Also called "additive manufacturing," the expectation is that using as yet undeveloped "elemental inks," the technology will make it possible to print virtually anything, with what will function on a molecular level as any chosen material.

The machine demonstrated at the Golden Gate library is not up to that level yet, but is pointing the way, and some of those who came to the class have already purchased their own 3-D printers and are putting them to a variety of uses.

"I call this playing," said Jim Carroll, a GE retiree who described himself as an expert in Tinkercad, one of the software programs designed to facilitate creating three-dimensional objects. Jerry Lastella, another who showed up for the talk, is actually producing a fishing device he calls "The Threader" using his 3-D printer, and selling them online and in local stores.

Malcolm and Edythe Newbourne of Marco Island, sitting in the front row, have experimented with a version that uses metal powder, and can heat sand hot enough to fuse it into glass.

"My dentist in Boston makes crowns in his office," said Malcolm.

Chalick had previously done one class for schoolchildren, and was scheduled to hold another at the Golden Gate Estates library branch. Then, the 3-D printer, like a borrowed library book, has to be returned — but the technology is not going away.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

SWFLN Member seeks digital services manager!

Digital Services Manager, Lee County Library System (Ft. Myers, FL)

Discover and Develop! The Lee County Library System (Southwest FL) seeks a dynamic and innovative Digital Services Manager to lead the Library to its next generation of website interactivity, digital collections enhancement, and expanded electronic services and systems. The Lee County Library System is committed to delivering exceptional digital and print content to its 675,000+ customers through its E-Branch services, six regional libraries and seven branch locations. Circulating seven million items annually, the LCLS provides stellar services with a dedicated staff of 253 employees and an annual $25mil operating budget. The Digital Services Manager, reporting to the Manager of Technology and Continuing Education, is responsible for providing leadership, project management, web development, third party integration, and technology support to library locations throughout Lee County.

Located along the Gulf Coast of Florida, Lee County offers exceptional quality of life and active lifestyle opportunities, boasting beautiful beaches, year-round sunshine, numerous golf, tennis and marina facilities plus a thriving arts and culture scene. In addition to an outstanding Lee County Library System, various historical sites (estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford and the Fort Myers Historical Museum), and the Lee County School District, residents also have easy access to wildlife, hiking, biking and paddling at various national, state and local parks such as J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge, Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve and Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail. The cost of living in the Cape Coral-Fort Myers metro is less than half the price of living in New York City and is less expensive than in cities such as Boston, Atlanta, Minneapolis or Baltimore. Lee County is midway between Miami and Tampa along Interstate 75 and boasts a world-class international airport. For more information on the Library and the region, visit Lee County Links.

Responsibilities. Responsibilities include developing, delivering, evaluating and improving digital services; seeking out ways to improve technology virtually and in the individual libraries; planning, generating and managing website content; networking with other libraries, professionals and community groups to continue best technology practices; developing and maintaining effective communication within the Library, county departments, and vendors; providing leadership for the Library website initiatives and committees; and providing technical support to staff and the public for digital services. Please see the Digital Services Manager complete job description for detail.

Qualifications. Minimum qualifications include a Master’s Degree in Library Science from an ALA-accredited program and four years of progressively responsible professional library experience with an emphasis on digital collections, services and systems or any combination of education and experience that demonstrates the ability to successfully perform the requirements of the position. Additional qualifications include: a solid knowledge of current and future trends in technology; superior communication skills; demonstrated creativity and innovation in applying technological solutions; experience working multi-location environment; and the ability to communicate and work collaboratively at all levels of the organization.

Compensation. $50,000-70,922 (with placement dependent upon experience and qualifications) and an attractive benefits package.

For further information, contact Gossage Sager Associates/Bradbury Associates via email or call 816-531-2468.  Apply via email with a meaningful cover letter and your resume as Word or PDF attachments to Jobeth Bradbury.  The position closes April 29, 2016.

Florida Library Training Calendar/Florida Library Webinars/Florida Electronic Library