Monday, November 13, 2006

WANTED: Libraries with smart solutions for keeping public access computers running

WANTED: Libraries with smart solutions for keeping public access computers running

Maintaining PACs can be a challenge for libraries.

Many individuals rely on public access computers (PACs) in public libraries to find information and resources that can significantly improve their lives. However, keeping PACs running can often be a challenge for busy librarians.

Enter the MaintainIT Project (www.maintainitproject.org): Funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Project is collecting stories about working with PACs. Based on these stories, we will identify best practices for maintaining PACs, and create a series of guides tailored to specific types of libraries. The guides will be distributed free of charge through numerous channels, including WebJunction (www.webjunction.org).

About the MaintainIT Project

The MaintainIT Project is a three-year project funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
We are working with public libraries to identify best practices of technical support for public access computers (PACs). The Project works with libraries throughout the U.S. and Canada, while focusing on libraries in the 18 states that are receiving the first round of hardware upgrade grants from the Foundation.

MaintainIT is a project of TechSoup (www.techsoup.org), a nonprofit serving fellow
nonprofits and public libraries with technology information, resources, and product donations.

Found a good solution?
Share your story!

Are you a librarian, IT staff, technology consultant, or anybody else working with PACs? Your input is essential for helping us pull together the most useful information for how to keep library
PACs running:

Share your challenges: What do you need to know to maintain your PACs?
Share your successes:What has been helpful and what have you learned?
• Post your story on our Web site: www.maintainitproject.org
• Email us at: maintainit@techsoup.org
• Call us at: 800-659-3579 x390 or 415-633-9390
Other ways to get involved
• Comment on questions and findings posted on our www.maintainitproject.org Web site
• Help us spread the word about the project
• Talk to us at a conference – find our schedule of conferences on our Web site
• Call or email us with questions at:
800-659-3579 x390 or
maintainit@techsoup.org
MaintainIT Project is a project of TechSoup, supported by the
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation MaintainIT Project ·
www.maintainitproject.org

Calling all small rural libraries!

We are collecting stories from libraries of all sizes until March 2008. During the first project phase (October-December 2006), we will be focusing on small, rural libraries, because our first guide will be tailored to your needs. If you work in – or know of – a small rural library with a good PAC story, please contact us by 12/15/2006.