Back to the Future Part III: Libraries and the New Technology Frontier
Back to the Future Part III
: Libraries and the New
Blog: http://bohyunkim.net/blog Twitter: @bohyunkim
Associate Director for Library Applications and Knowledge Systems,
Health Sciences and Human Services Library
University of Maryland, Baltimore
- South Central Regional Library Council Webinar Series -
For STEAM Education
http://www.castilleja.org/page.cfm?p=941600 Palo Alto, CA.
More Learning / Maker Labs
at Schools & Libraries
“ In 2012 and 2013, IMLS funded 24 Learning Labs across the
country. Learning Labs cater to middle- and high-school youth
and provide media-rich learning environment with supportive
mentorship. … By incorporating Learning Lab or Maker
programs into curricula and activities to meet learning
standards, teachers can broaden their students’ STEM (Science
Technology Engineering and Mathematics) knowledge and
experiences and use advanced technology that would likely not
be available to them otherwise.”
Source: Hickey, Katherine, and Kyungwon Koh. “Creating a
Meteorology Maker Space.” HackLibSchool, January 8, 2015.
3D Printers at Retail Shops
Online 3D Printing Services
i.materialise, Ponoko, Shapeway, Sculpteo
Application of 3D Printing
Experiential learning / Hobbyist projects
Custom parts (for a lab equipment or a household item)
Prototype for a start-up business
About the process of a makerspace planning and implementation, see Bohyun Kim
and Everly Brown, “Making a Makerspace Happen,” 2015 ALA Annual Conference,
June 2015, San Frnacisco, CA. http://www.slideshare.net/bohyunkim/making-a-
Curriculum / Activities
“MakerJawn Curriculum,” Philadelphia Free Library MakerJawn,
“Ideas and Inspiration,” Bourne Idea Lab at Castilleja School,
“Annotated Bibliography of online STEM resources for
educators and librarians working with youth,” Information-
Creating Behavior in Learning Labs and Makerspaces,
2. Programmable Biology
“All living organisms contain an instruction set that determines
what they look like and what they do.These instructions are
encoded in the organisms's DNA. ... As biotechnologists have
learned more about how to read and manipulate this code,
they have begun to take genetic information associated with
useful features from one organism, and add it into another
“More recent advances however, have enabled scientists to
make new sequences of DNA from scratch. By combining
these advances with the principles of modern engineering,
scientists can now use computers and laboratory chemicals to
design organisms that do new things--like produce biofuels or
excrete the precursors of medical drugs.”
Source: “What is Synthetic Biology?”
"Synthetic biology is the engineering of biology: the synthesis
of complex, biologically based (or inspired) systems which
display functions that do not exist in nature.This engineering
perspective may be applied at all levels of the hierarchy of
biological structures – from individual molecules to whole cells,
tissues and organisms. In essence, synthetic biology will enable
the design of ‘biological systems’ in a rational and systematic
Source: High-level Expert Group European Commission,
Additive manufacturing of organic living material.
3D printing functional tissue and organs through the layering
of living cells.
“Basically, once a tissue design is selected, the company
(Organovo) makes "bio-ink" from the cells. Using a NovoGen
MMX bioprinter, the cells are layered between water-based
layers until the tissue is built.That hydrogel in between layers
is sometimes used to fill spaces in the tissue or as supports to
the 3D printed tissue. Collagen is another material used to fuse
the cells together.This layer-by-layer approach is very similar
to the normal 3D printing process, where products are built
from the ground up.”
Source: Gilpin, Lyndsey. “3D ‘Bioprinting’: 10ThingsYou Should Know about
How ItWorks.” TechRepublic,April 23, 2014.
“A biohackerspace is a community laboratory that is open to the
public where people are encouraged to learn about and experiment
with biotechnology. Like a makerspace, a biohackerspace provides
people with tools that are usually not available at home. A
makerspace offers making and machining tools such as a 3D printer,
a CNC (computer numerically controlled) milling machine, a vinyl
cutter, and a laser cutter.”
“A biohackerspace, however, contains tools such as microscopes,
Petri dishes, freezers, and PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction)
machines, which are often found in a wet lab setting.”
Source: Bohyun Kim, “Biohackerspace, DIYbio, and Libraries”:
Pepper, the Humanoid Robot
“Pepper the humanoid robot is so hot that he sold out within a
minute, according to his Japanese creator, SoftBank Robotics
Corp. Only 1,000 models were available for the consumer
¥198,000 ($1,600) with an additional ¥24,600 ($200) monthly
data and insurance fees.
4 feet tall, 61 pounds, speaks 17 languages
“With his array of cameras, touch sensors, accelerometer and
other sensors in his "endocrine-type multi-layer neural
network," Pepper has the ability to read your emotions as well
as develop his own. He isn't a work robot, but more of an
emotional companion for people.”
Source: Singh, Angad. “‘Pepper’ the Emotional Robot, Sells out within a
Minute.” CNN.com, June 23, 2015.
What Is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is virtual currency. (A decentralized cryptocurrency)
“Bitcoin is an Internet-wide distributed ledger.You buy into the
ledger by purchasing one of a fixed number of slots, either with
cash or by selling a product and service for Bitcoin.You sell out
of the ledger by trading your Bitcoin to someone else who
wants to buy into the ledger. Anyone in the world can buy into
or sell out of the ledger any time they want – with no approval
needed, and with no or very low fees.The Bitcoin “coins”
themselves are simply slots in the ledger, analogous in some
ways to seats on a stock exchange, except much more broadly
applicable to real world transactions.”
Source: Andreessen, Marc. “Why Bitcoin Matters.” NewYorkTimes, January
21, 2014. http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/01/21/why-bitcoin-matters/
How Does Bitcoin Work?
“To send bitcoins, you need two things: a bitcoin address and a
“Think of your bitcoin address as a safe deposit box with a
“When Alice wants to send bitcoins to Bob, she uses her private
key to sign a message with the input (the source transaction(s)
of the coins), amount, and output (Bob’s address).”
“She then sends them from her bitcoin wallet out to the wider
bitcoin network. From there, bitcoin miners verify the
transaction, putting it into a transaction block and eventually
Source: “How Do BitcoinTransactions Work?” CoinDesk, March 20, 2015.
Advantages of Bitcoin
Acts like cash; No chargeback; No trust required for transaction
[Flip side of this is that it is preferred for illegal activities just like cash
Purely digital and no central authorities
No or small transaction fees (for now)
Micropayment below transaction fees possible.
(Bitcoin transactions are divisible.A satoshi is one hundred millionth
of a bitcoin, and it is possible to send a transaction as small as 5430
satoshis on the bitcoin network.)
A potential way to deter spam?
Source: Andreessen, Marc. “Why Bitcoin Matters.” NewYorkTimes, January 21, 2014.
Problem with scalability
Not really anonymous;Addresses are traceable.
Loss of private keys means loss of your funds.
Can be hacked and stolen.
Large fluctuations in value
Accepted at not many places.
See Consumer Protection Financial Bureau, “Risks to consumers posed by virtual
See Wagner, Christian. “A Bitcoin FAQ.” Brokenlibrarian.org, September 30, 2013.
Nick Summers, “Nike+ Now Has Over 18 Million Members,” The NextWeb Blog, August 21, 2013,
http://thenextweb.com/insider/2013/08/21/nike- now-has-18m-members-logging-their-daily-exercise- with-a-
We now live in the era of abundant information & scarce
We are ever more distracted by the constant influx of new
stream of information.
Human attention is the most coveted item nowadays, not the
Digital engagement becomes paramount in this new
environment for the success of any endeavor that requires the
Gamification is a potent tool for engagement.
Games are Super Engaging.
According to a game researcher, Jane McGonigal, there are
currently more than half a billion people worldwide playing
computer and video games at least an hour a day, 183 million in
the United States alone.
Five million gamers in the United States are spending more than
forty hours a week playing games, which is the equivalent of a
full time job.
Source: Jane McGonigal, “We Spend 3 Billion Hours a Week as a Planet Playing Videogames.
Is ItWorth It? How Could It Be MORE Worth It?”TED Conversations Archives, February 2011,
Game vs. Gamification
GAME: An imaginary world that is separate from reality
GAMIFICATION: A game layer on top of the real world
Not the same as creating a game but transferring some of the
positive characteristics of a game to something that is not a
game, thus, gami-“fy”-ing.
Those positive characteristics of a game are often loosely
described as “fun,” and they have the effect of engaging game
players in the activity.
Gamification Is Not New.
If you have to hit 2,500 tennis balls a day, how would you
handle that kind of intense training?
Andrew Agassi at the age of seven imagined a ball machine as
a black dragon spitting balls to smite him.
Source: Aaron Dignan, Game Frame: Using Games as a Strategy for Success. Simon and
Schuster, 2011., p.80.
What Is New in Gamification
Not the idea of applying gaming elements to a real- world
activity, but how seamlessly, ubiquitously, and socially those
gaming elements are now applied.
We now carry our address book, e-mails, notes, calendar, map,
social media accounts, and even spending history and patterns in
one small smartphone. Being placed in the same device where all
this information resides and which we carry everywhere we go,
games can easily slip into our real-world activities.
Where and how we play games
Source: Bohyun Kim, UnderstandingGamification.Vol. 51. Library
Technology Report. ALATechSource, 2015, p. 7-8.
The Backdrop of the Popularity
1) The rapid adoption of the smartphone
2) The tremendous growth of the mobile web
3) The increased use of social media
Source: Bohyun Kim, UnderstandingGamification.Vol. 51. LibraryTechnology Report.
ALATechSource, 2015, p. 7-8. http://journals.ala.org/ltr/issue/view/502
Real & Online Life
Gamification rewards our behavior on the web, often on the
mobile web, with social connections and statuses.
As we spend more and more time online, the boundary
between our online and real life will only become increasingly
blurry, and more things will start crossing over between these
Gamification is an early harbinger of this broader trend.
Gamification is part of a bigger trend, digital engagement.
Source: Bohyun Kim, Understanding Gamification. Vol. 51. LibraryTechnology Report. ALA
TechSource, 2015, p. 7-8. http://journals.ala.org/ltr/issue/view/502
Also see Bohyun Kim, “Transforming the Library throughGamification,”
ALATechSourceWorkshop, Online. May 6, 2015.
& “Learning with Games in Medicine and Healthcare and the Potential Role of
Libraries,” in Games in Libraries: Essays on Using Play to Connect and Instruct., ed.
Breanne Kirsch, McFarland, 2014. pp. 152-170.
For more information, see :
American Library Association