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Why Your Library May Soon Have Laser Cutters and 3-D Printers. Ben Wiseman Visit the downtown branch of the Chattanooga Public Library and you'll find the usual stuff: rows of books, magazines, and computers.

Why Your Library May Soon Have Laser Cutters and 3-D Printers

But walk up to the fourth floor and there's something unexpected. It's a “makerspace”—complete with a laser cutter, a zine lab for making paper publications, and a 3-D printer. There's even a loom. When it opened in spring 2013, the maker floor—formerly unused and filled with decrepit equipment—became a massive hit, and up to 1,200 patrons attended events there. Chattanooga and Cleveland aren't the only cities giving this new kind of library a try. Ezra Reynolds is an example. But what about books? You have to give the librarians credit. Makerspace Resources. The resources below were compiled as part of my research while writing Makerspaces: A Practical Guide for Librarians (Rowman and Littlefield, 2014).

Makerspace Resources

You might also be interested in the results from the Makerspaces in Libraries Survey I conducted in 2013. General Makerspace ResourcesMakerspace DirectoriesLibrary-Focused Maker ResourcesProject SitesMaker ProductsMakerspace Funding and Donation SourcesDiscussion ListsTwitter Hashtags and Folks to FollowFacebook GroupsPresentations and TalksGeneral Technology Sites and Blogs General Makerspace Resources Make:: The website for Make: magazine contains a blog, videos, project information, and links to the other Maker Media sites. 3D printing: coming to a library near you. A few months back, we talked about the challenges faced by libraries in the era of ebooks, digital information and shrinking budgets.

3D printing: coming to a library near you

An emerging idea, now being pioneered at one New York state library, is to offer 3D printing facilities to enable constituents to develop and innovate new ideas and products. The Fayetteville Free Library of Fayetteville, NY recently has assumed a new mission in efforts to serve its constituencies with 3D printing facilities. The "FFL Fab Lab" is a space set aside with 3D printing technology, which seeks to encourage innovation and learning of the concept.

At the foundation of the FFL's Fab Lab will be a MakerBot Thing-o-Matic 3D printer, donated to the library. The Fab Lab's 3D printer uses plastic as its raw material. As stated on the library's Fab Lab Website, the goal is to provide what is known as a "hackerspace" to the local public, providing access to equipment that may be too expensive to purchase on an individual basis: Role of public library in creating & promoting makerspaces. Makerspaces take libraries by storm.


The Greatest Show and Tell on Earth. Fab Labs at the Library. There’s something unusual sitting in the parking lot of the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Ind.

Fab Labs at the Library

Pay a visit to the 50-foot trailer and you might be surprised with what you find. Inside are various tools for cutting and shaping wooden objects, an electronics work bench, an injection molding machine and one of the most advanced gadgets for inventors, a 3-D printer. Between the Lines» Blog Archive » The Library as a Makerspace. Libraries are no longer simply a holding area for books, they are community hubs.

Between the Lines» Blog Archive » The Library as a Makerspace

Manufacturing Makerspaces. Kids gather to make Lego robots; teens create digital music, movies, and games with computers and mixers; and students engineer new projects while adults create prototypes for small business products with laser cutters and 3D printers.

Manufacturing Makerspaces

» Makerspaces Move into Academic Libraries ACRL TechConnect Blog. During the past year, makerspaces have been gaining traction in libraries.

» Makerspaces Move into Academic Libraries ACRL TechConnect Blog

Making Things in Academic Libraries. The past few months have seen lots of discussion about makerspaces in libraries.

Making Things in Academic Libraries

What’s a makerspace? Buffy Hamilton’s great post over at the Unquiet Librarian has a couple of good definitions, but essentially it’s a place for folks to make things, perhaps writing and illustrating a zine, using the open source Arduino computing platform to program a robot, screenprinting, or creating model houses with a 3D printer. A Makerspace Takes Over A Local Library. Makerspaces just might take over libraries.

A Makerspace Takes Over A Local Library

School of Information Studies professor Dave Lankes seems to think so. Library as Makerspace: Creating and Nurturing Communities of Teen Writers. Original photograph by Buffy Hamilton As part of our makerspace initiative this year (please see this blog post and this slidedeck here) and inspired by the work of the Sacramento Public Library, one of my focal points is thinking about ways the library can support creating communities of readers and writers who are crafting and composing texts (and I use the term text rather liberally).

Library as Makerspace: Creating and Nurturing Communities of Teen Writers

The Sacramento Public Library Winter 2012 “Write at iStreet Press” writing and publishing catalog offers a model of what the library as a makerspace for constructing texts looks like in a community through the public library. Possible topics I’m interested in offering as “lunch and learn” sessions or after-school sessions could include (but are not limited to!) : Creative writing (memoirs, poetry, short stories, novels) and writer’s craftSelf publishing options (print as well as eBook/eInk)Academic writing Digital and/or multimodal compositionMultigenre writingStorytelling Like this: Like Loading...

The Makings of Maker Spaces, Part 1: Space for Creation, Not Just Consumption. Maker spaces in libraries are the latest step in the evolving debate over what public libraries’ core mission is or should be. From collecting in an era of scarce resources to curation in an era of overabundant ones, some libraries are moving to incorporate cocreation: providing the tools to help patrons produce their own works of art or information and sometimes also collecting the results to share with other members of the ­community. Maker spaces promote learning through play; have the potential to demystify science, math, technology, and engineering; and encourage women and under­represented minorities to seek careers in those fields.

They also tie in to the growing trend of indie artists in every medium—including books—who are bypassing traditional gatekeepers, taking advantage of new tools to produce professionally polished products, and going direct to the web to seek an audience. Libraries around the United States offer tools for patrons to learn by doingBy Lauren Britton R. Makerspaces, Participatory Learning, and Libraries. The concept of libraries as makerspaces first hit my radar last November when I read about the Fayetteville Free Library’s FabLab. As I began hearing more buzz about libraries and makerspaces the first few months of this year, I decided that learning more about this concept and exploring how I might apply the elements of makerspaces to my library program would be a personal learning project for the summer.

From Stacks to Hacks: Makerspaces and LibraryBox - 10-19-2012 : METRO in New York, NY US METRO. The makerspace movement is gaining momentum in the library world. In his recent report on “Libraries and the informational future: some notes,” Lorcan Dempsey of OCLC noted how “space is being reconfigured around broader education and research needs, and less around the management of print collection. In effect, space is shifting from infrastructure to engagement…” Nothing represents this emerging trend more than the recent growth of makerspaces within libraries. Makerspaces can take many forms. They can be open areas in the library with tables, seating, and facilities to encourage collaborative work among small groups in an informal setting.

They can also be more technical, workshop-oriented spaces that provide tools for creative activities, for instance lending musical instruments for audio recording, having 3D printers for “printing” tactile recreations, having souped-up computer stations for graphics and coding work, or supplying carpentry tools for object-oriented craftsmanship.