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Conceptual Library Setup

January 22, 2019

Author: Bianca Yang
Email: ipacifics@gmail.com

I just had a strange idea for a personal library setup. This is a physical personal library, mind you, because the whole point is to have the visitor or owner be able to wander through and glean something meaningful from the physical arrangement.

Back to the main point. The shelves should be mobile. The books should be placed in chronological order of when they were last read. I originally thought they should be placed where they were bought, because that would allow one to immediately see what kind of knowledge acquisition phase the reader was going through at that time. This would make trends in mental development of the reader more obvious. But dates can be inscribed on the inside of the book, so it’s probably more useful to organize the books based on chronological order of reading. Each read, just like each checkout, gets a stamp on a card inside the book, or in a database, so it’s easy to know how often the book gets read by that person. It reflects, again, on the reader’s mental development and state. This book arrangement means that books will accumulate in some direction, emptying shelves at the end. To maintain spatial order, you should move the shelves back, which is why I suggested mobile shelves.

Now that I’m thinking about it more, it’s probably best to integrate some automated book retrieval system. I love the idea of having a physical space to walk around and read in, so you’ll still need to allocate space. What changes now, is that instead of having physical book shelves to browse, you’ll have digital panels that will show you the real-time, always-up-to-date arrangement of books in the collection. Touch screens can be incorporated so people can preview the books, see book reviews, see reading history, etc. People who want to checkout a book can just tap “checkout” and have a robot arm deliver it to a pickup section. There is still a space limitation here, in the sense that if you want to maintain the same magnification of the books on your digital screen, you will have to continually buy new screens and allocate more space. You could either shrink the digital shelf magnification or move to a infinite scroll type shelf.

At this point, unless someone has a real desire for what I’ve described, this idea will remain the product of Tuesday morning idle speculation.

Questions, comments, etc. can go to my inbox (above).