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Technology forcing libraries to transform

Published: 6:42PM Sunday June 15, 2014 Source: ONE News

The increasing popularity of E-books means libraries across the country are thinking more creatively about how to deliver their services.

The Upper Hutt library is going through a transformation and is now home to music lessons, art classes, knitting clubs and writing workshops.

"Public libraries these days are very much community hubs where we still connect people with information and we connect them with each other," says Upper Hutt librarian Debbie Duncan.

Physical book lending has decreased by 10% in the last year at the Upper Hutt library, while E-book lending grew by 90%.

The trend is happening across the country.

"They're borrowing e-books and accessing our various databases. Because of technology they can do that remotely so for many of them they may not even come in the door," says Ms Duncan.

While libraries are maintaining their core business of lending physical books will never change, they acknowledge times are changing and they'll have to adapt in other areas.

"Once upon a time we provided type writers and cassette players now we provide computers and scanners. In the future we will be providing 3D printers and other creative technology," says Auckland Council libraries manager Allison Dobbie.

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