Tech Trends for 2012

Out with old and in with the new.  The Cornflower has posted a nice article on Tech Trends for 2012 based off of what Jason Hiner at Tech Republic and Pete Cashmore of Mashable believe to be trending for the new year.

Here is my Tech Trends for 2012 as it relates to medical libraries:

1. RIM will go out of business or get bought. Blackberrys will go the way of Palm Pilot. Hospital IT departments will be forced to address the iPhone and Android issue.  Of course given the speed at which IT departments have upgraded from IE 6, who knows how long they can delay the inevitable.  (This may not happen exactly in 2012 but it isn’t just my crazy dream either.  It is well documented that RIMs stock is down, the Blackberry has 17% market share, and its PlayBooks are not selling.)

2.Librarians will shift more money toward Patron Driven Aquisition of books.  I don’t see us at the point where our entire book budget is totally PDA, but more and more libraries are experimenting and I think they will be finding it to be a successful method of providing ebooks that they will look to expand it.

3. Facebook will lose its luster with librarians.  The push to put the library on Facebook to connect with users will die out for most.  Only a select few successful libraries with a highly engaged user base will continue. The others will peter out and like the dead blogs of yesteryear will go unupdated and unused haunting the web.

4. Augmented reality will be used more often in the stacks.  Specifically it will be used to highlight libraries digital repositories and online books and journals.  For example somebody browsing the cardiology section of the stacks will be able to see a list of online books and journals, images, sounds, etc. specific to that subject area.  If they move to the nursing section of the stacks they will see the virtual nursing collection.  (This is still kind of an “out there” idea. Notice I didn’t say this would be done by every library in the world, I just think you start to see some libraries doing more experiments with it.)

5. This will be the year of the smartphone.  When my mother says that she is feeling pressure (not from her children but from society) to upgrade to a smartphone, you know that it has hit the masses in a big way.  As a result we will be seeing a whole new user group.  This user group are the late adopters and they may not be as tech savvy as the early adopters who have had smartphones for a while.  This group will be excited about their new phone but also may need some hand holding as they get accustomed to all of the things that the early adopters now take for granted.

What do you predict for 2012?  Tech or non-tech what do you think will be impacting medical libraries?

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