July 19, 2012
Amanda Schnieders, Kauffman Foundation
Gigabit Speed Provides KCK Library New Opportunities
Public libraries have always been places of lifelong learning, whether through the volumes of books that line the walls or the free computers and Internet availability to patrons. Now, tapping into a gigabit network in Kansas City, libraries on both sides of the state line can pursue more collaborative community projects and distance-learning opportunities.
Among those efforts is teh K-20 Libraries Pilot, a collaborative program involving public libraries, university libraries and school libraries in attempts to reinforce lifelong learning in age groups from kindergarten to college and beyond. This program is part of a national campaign developed through the “Fiber-to-the-Library” Initiative that aims to use the libraries for advanced testing centers and innovative new services such as health kiosks and high-speed video conferencing with sister libraries across town and around the globe.
Access to Google Fiber’s high-speed connection will promote greater information sharing across library systems, locally, nationally and even globally. It will also break down technological barriers to collaboration amongst Kansas City’s local libraries. This collaborative spirit will make Kansas City a more innovative place, as well as a more unified city, creating new educational, cultural and civic opportunities for everyone.
Other Library Pilot Interviews: