Deep in the heart of the Texas hill country — Bexar County, to be specific (and yes, that’s pronounced Bear County) — lies a new building full of promise for the future of reading, libraries, and books in general.
In an unprepossessing building on the south side of San Antonio, Texas, the digital age of books has begun its inevitable march into the physical world with the opening a few days ago of the country’s first all-digital library, Bibliotech.
The BiblioTech is the country’s first public digital library of its kind. Membership is free to Bexar County residents, and members are able to enjoy services including:
- Reading e-books
- Internet services
- Computer classes
- Laptop, desktop and tablet access
- Check-out an e-reader
- Bring their kids for story time
- Reserve study/meeting space
When you take a look inside, you’ll see a very digital-age version of a reading space, complete with 48 computers – Apple Macs, with trademark large HD screens – as well as clean lines, futuristic design and lots of room. Membership is free, and members can even check out ereaders, which automatically turn themselves off if not brought back within the proscribed amount of time. Or you can just use your own device. There are 10,000 current titles, a kids room with touch screen Kaplan computers, and accommodations for the visually impaired.
Why is this important for Grey Gecko readers?
Because this is exactly the sort of library that we’re interested in working with; a library that is forward-thinking, that involves the local community, and increases readership by incorporating technology directly into its systems. Don’t get the wrong idea – we love all libraries, and we’re happy to be partnering with them to distribute our books, but this… this is innovation on a grand scale, and we value that highly here at the Gecko.
We’ve already contacted the appropriate folks over at the facility to discuss opportunities for Grey Gecko to get involved and help out. Stay tuned here for more on that front, but in the meantime, if you’re in Bexar County or San Antonio, stop by the library, and see the future today!