One of the number of extraordinary people staffing our Camano Library is Angie Davis. It has been my pleasure to meet her, to ask her questions, to watch her interact with library clients. If you have a computer issue, need help, and want to know something about programs, Angie is the go-to-person. Here are her responses to my questions.
What is your educational background?
Norm…I have No MLIS, so we can skip formal training. However, I took a course back in 1998 called A+. It teaches you how to set up computer hardware and operating systems. After that, basically everything, I know regarding technology I learned from reading and doing.
Before coming to Camano Island Library Pilot Project, where did you work and what did you do there?
I worked at WAMU in the Online Banking dept. I worked behind the website, setting up online banking, answering customer emails and various other tasks related to the banks online presence.
Do you have a title at the Library? If so, what is it?
Yes…I am a PSA II Technical Liaison. That means I am a Public Service Assistant with a Technology Kicker! I report technology issues related to the library to our main service center, and on a limited basis, can assist patrons with their technology issues as well. This is primarily associated with using the public computers here at the library.
What are your responsibilities at the Camano Library?
Provide courteous, helpful and efficient service to customers by performing such tasks as: charging out library materials, provide basic readers’ advisory services, provide technical assistance to staff regarding use of computer hardware and software, and patrons regarding use of public computers. I also perform other library support services as assigned.
If classes could be offered at the Camano Library, what classes would you recommend and for what age groups?
Recently, Sno-Isle received a grant from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation for a series of classes we call “Librarians As Information Guides,” featuring topics like genealogy research, consumer tips and healthy lifestyles. These classes promote the many databases that Sno-Isle subscribes to. Ideally, we’d love to offer more programs and classes based on what our customers want – we just have a little problem with available space.
Can anyone who is a member of the Sno-Isle Libraries come to you for help with their computer?
We’re happy to help anyone who calls or comes in (we help a lot of patrons with their laptops in the summer). If we can’t help right away, we’re happy to schedule an appointment with our Book a Librarian feature.
What restrictions do you or the System place on this kind of help?
Our restrictions are based on the level of expertise required for their issue. If it’s a hardware related problem, we always refer them to their own choice of technician outside of Sno-Isle Libraries. If time and staff are available, we can usually help them right away, otherwise we would schedule an appointment to assist them further. We do ask that if you come in for help, you prepare in advance, read your owner’s manual, and have your password ready.
Do you teach courses in the use of computers? Software such as MS Word, etc.
We have in the past, but we’ve found it may be more effective to schedule an appointment using the “Book a Librarian” feature. Using this option provides one-on-one training making the most use of time by both patron and staff.
You have indicated your favorite reading is in the area of nonfiction. Do you have a favorite genre in nonfiction you enjoy? If so, what?
I read a lot of gardening books and magazines as well as the latest software application manuals, but I’ll read anything that captures my interest.
I’ve heard that a number of publishers have refused to sell eBooks to libraries. What’s the problem?
eBooks are still fairly new and everyone is scrambling to adjust to this new business model. Traditionally libraries would buy new books in hardcover and then purchase paperback copies as they become available. With eBooks, that model is no longer valid, so publishers are trying to figure out how to make money so they remain in business. Publishers do understand that library users are great bookstore supporters, so I’m sure this will be sorted out when the dust settles.