• Laurel Contributor

High-Tech Comes to Carlton

by Luke Osteen

There’s nothing dusty about the offerings at Albert Carlton-Cashiers Community Library.

You may be one of those people who thinks a library is only for checking out books and keeping up with newspapers and magazines.

But that’s strictly a view from the 20th century.

Albert Carlton-Cashiers Community Library is breaking down all the conventional wisdom about what a library can offer its patrons.

For check out, there are sewing/embroidery machines, sergers, fiber arts kits for knitting and crochet, tatting and latch hook, embroidery and needlework, and quilting. There are Arduino kits. Arduino is an open-source platform used for building electronics projects. Arduino consists of both a physical programmable circuit board and a piece of software, or IDE (Integrated Development Environment) that used to write and upload computer code to the physical board.

Then there’s the Dremel set (for home projects) and green screen kits for digital photo projects) that can be checked out.

For use inside the Library there is the Memory Conversion Station that includes equipment to convert analog audio (records, tapes) to digital (CD’s, flash drive) and equipment to convert analog video and film (8mm, VHS, slides, film negatives) to digital (DVD, flash drive)

There’s also a Cricut cutting machine. This was originally going to be for in-house use, but Librarian Serenity Richards has decided to let it circulate.

Of course, the library has lots of new books and DVDs to help people utilize these tools.

Perfect for the Plateau’s pristine night skies, the library has an 8-inch Telescope (and all the accessories) for backyard stargazing.

Then there’s the attention-getting 3D Printer for in-house use. Patrons may bring appropriate STL files for print and staff will print the item. There will be a minimal cost involved, to cover the cost of filament. Library computers have design software available to use and the library has several books on getting started with 3D printing and lots of project books to work from.

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