Brilliant Idea from Ostego District Library

An amazing idea for digital card catalogs on endcaps in the library came through on our VERSOusers mailing list last week and we have to showcase this library hack! This idea came from Andrea Estelle, Library Director at Otsego District Library in Michigan.

Andrea drew inspiration from the digital end caps at the Nashville Public Library. These particular endcaps were created by Anode, a team of “thinkers and makers who are passionate about blending media, stories and technology.”  For the endcaps at Nashville Public Library, they have received a platinum award in LibraryWorks’ second annual Modern Library Awards (MLAs).


You can read about Anode and the award here: 2016 Modern Library Award

To recreate the endcap touch screens at 1/20th of the cost, Andrea did the following:

  • We used 27-inch ACER monitors and flipped and mounted them vertically. acer
  • We used a very small processor – The Dell Micro PC 3000 Series – and put it on the bottom shelf behind the endcap.
  • We drilled a hole through the endcap for the cords.2000px-Drill_scheme.svg
  • We added 3 widgets to the bottom of our Verso homepage to make scrolling covers of New Books, New Movies, and New Audiobooks.
  • We set up the computers to have a screensaver showing slides that advertise our programs when people are not using the catalog.13935043_1199474980073121_8082006659874804850_n

Take a look at the before and after pictures of the library endcaps:

BeforeAdultArea (480x640)AfterAdultArea



Adult Area Before and After



BeforeKidsArea (589x800) (471x640)AfterKidsArea




Kids area Before and After



Since the touch screens work like a smart phone, patrons can easily scroll through the catalog with their fingertips, shrinking and enlarging as needed. The added widgets allow for easy searches through MELcat, Michigan’s Interlibrary loan system, Overdrive, a selection of e-books and Wow Library, a listing of Ostego’s weekly top choices. (can these be customized through VERSO?)

According to Andea the library has been getting many positive patron comments on the digital card catalogs; “The kids and teens especially like using them.”

We were pleased to see Ostego Library utilizing VERSO in a new and innovative way. Thank you Andrea for sharing this with us! If any of our readers have their own Library Hacks to share we would love to hear about them.

About Ostego District Public Library

ostego libraryThe Otsego District Public Library is a full-service public library offering book and audio-video collections, programs and services to the residents of Alamo Township, the City of Otsego, and Otsego Township.   Founded in 1844, the library moved into a new 18,400 square foot building in 2009.  It houses 60,000 items available for checkout, offers many programs for children and adults, and allows public use of its meeting and program spaces at no charge. Patrons checked out over 154,000 items from the library in 2015, and over 70,000 people visited the library for programs, collections, and use of computers.



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