[Libs-Or] The Toward Gigabit Libraries Toolkit is ready!

Darci Hanning darci.hanning at state.or.us
Fri Jan 4 11:46:26 PST 2019


Greetings! (and please pardon the duplicate posts)

If you have any interest in the topic of fiber, E-rate, and/or broadband in general, I highly recommend viewing the 4-minute explainer video (link below) to get a quick yet thorough overview of this new free toolkit and how it can be used, especially by small and rural libraries. Note: you do NOT need to be a “techie” to use this toolkit!

Here are what pilot project participants have to say about the toolkit:


  *   “I thought it was very effective. I most appreciated the visual diagram which pictured how Internet service works, and the different steps it goes through before it gets to a Computer.”


  *   “I found the process to be very educational and helpful. I feel I learned a huge amount about our broadband (and local network) in going through the process, and I expect to learn even more as I read through the materials you left with me. I also really appreciate having the physical printouts and sheets to refer back to and use as a reference.”


  *   “Going through the toolkit helped me understand my library's broadband infrastructure better and feel more confident talking about it with others.”

Read on for the original message:


After extensive testing in the field with rural and tribal libraries, the free Toward Gigabit Libraries toolkit is out and ready to help you!


Explainer Video: https://youtu.be/PXWv3-HYm-I


Project Site:   http://www.internet2.edu/tgl


The Towards Gigabit Library Toolkit is designed to empower practitioners to become more savvy and effective consumers, advocates, and providers of high-quality Internet access and digital services to their communities. Funded by an Institute of Museum and Libary Services Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian grant, the toolkit is designed to scale nationally to all libraries, regardless of size or geographic location.


Based on enthusiastic participant feedback and number of libraries served, this project exceeded its objectives.  Now - it’s your opportunity to bring the toolkit to libraries in your state!


What is the Toolkit?

The Toward Gigabit Libraries Toolkit is a free, open-source technology learning, diagnostic and advocacy tool designed for public and tribal libraries in the US.  The toolkit will guide you through a series of questions about your technology environment -- and provide you with all the information you need to answer the questions.


The toolkit is an excellent way to diagnose and fix library technology problems. Some libraries have found it especially useful in preparing for Erate requests, budget cycles, and even in helping open up lines of communication between library staff and tech workers!


Best of all, you do not need to be a “techie” to use the toolkit. While it’s always helpful to have someone with technical knowledge to assist, this toolkit was piloted with at least 70 library staff in 58 rural and tribal libraries in the US to ensure that it is as simple as possible to use. Libraries, State Library Organizations, Research and Education Networks, and others in AK, AZ, CT, ID, KS, NE, NM, OK, PA, SD, TX, and WA rolled up their sleeves and helped test and refine the toolkit over the 3-year pilot period.



The toolkit is divided into 10 sections covering 60 pages. It also has a handy glossary section at the end for quick lookups of technical terms.


The toolkit is designed to address the most common technology issues in libraries, so it does cover a lot of ground.  You or libraries you work with may need to only complete the sections that are the most important to you.


After you’ve completed the toolkit, you can use another document called the Broadband Improvement Plan to create your own long-term and short-term strategies to improve your technology!


Remix Friendly

The toolkit is free and open source (licensed under a  Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License<http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/>).  As well as being a stand-alone resource, you are free to use anything from the toolkit and mix it into other documents. This may be especially useful for State Library Organizations; Rural & Education Networks; Library Consortiums and others who would like to customize the toolkit materials.


What did project participants say?


·         “I thought it was very effective. I most appreciated the visual diagram which pictured how Internet service works, and the different steps it goes through before it gets to a Computer.”


·         “I found the process to be very educational and helpful. I feel I learned a huge amount about our broadband (and local network) in going through the process, and I expect to learn even more as I read through the materials you left with me. I also really appreciate having the physical printouts and sheets to refer back to and use as a reference.”


·         “Going through the toolkit helped me understand my library's broadband infrastructure better and feel more confident talking about it with others.”


The wait is over, and the Toward Gigabit Libraries toolkit is ready for you!


Thanks!

Carson
--
Carson Block Consulting Inc.
Technology Vision.  Technology Power.  Your Library.
http://www.carsonblock.com
voice: (970) 673-7475

Cheers,

Darci Hanning, MLIS
Public Library Consultant / CE Coordinator
darci.hanning at state.or.us<mailto:darci.hanning at state.or.us> | 503-378-2527| www.oregon.gov/library<https://www.oregon.gov/library>
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