Nation's First 24-Hour Automated Library To Open In Norman, OK
The country's first 24-Hour automatic library will soon open in Norman, OK—home to the University of Oklahoma, among other things. According to Oklahoma City news channel KFOR, the small, canopy-like structure was installed at the Irving Recreational Center and will serve as an eastern arm for the Pioneer Library System.
The system works pretty much like a Redbox machine, except you use your library card, rather than a credit card, to check out books, movies and CDs. According to The Norman Transcript, each library will house about 400 combined items. Users can also pay fines with credit cards, return books, and pick up reserved items.
Lisa Wells, assistant director for Library Services, had this to say:
There are a lot of installations in China. But this is the first United States installation. We were very excited to be first to bring it to Oklahoma, and more importantly, the city of Norman.
Mike Monk, CEO of EnvisionWare (the company that manufactured the installation), was excited to see his project come to fruition:
Many of my employees said this was my birthday present because that was yesterday, and it was bringing this system to life yesterday for the first time in America after 2 and ½ years of research and development.
A west-side satellite is also in the works, and both automated libraries will be open to the public on November 1st.
Pretty cool, yeah? I'm all for library expansion and greater access to books and media, even if it means I don't get to roam the stacks. What do you think?
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