Virtual business space @ your library

The one renovation desire that I have is for a virtual office space for patrons. It would be a space for people to “work from home” while enjoying all the necessities of an actual office: comfy seating, space to spread out documents, outlets always nearby, updated scanner/copier/fax machine, the ability to use cell phones, and maybe even a chance to collaborate.

I’m currently sitting in a local business that offers such a place for a price. They have a free Friday offer for newbies, so I thought I’d infiltrate and gather intel. I think this may be two hours of my life that I’m not getting back.

I honestly don’t see a benefit to working in their social business space versus the current library structure. Other than the ability to use your phone and a handy kitchen, the space itself is inadequate. Not only do the bright red tables have a distracting glare from the lights above, the seat is beginning to hurt my bum after about 90 minutes and I’m not a fan of chairs on rollers (I think it might be a short-person problem).

There’s also a TV that I keep catching out of the corner of my eye. Being a newbie and not wanting to step above my rank, I left the sound on until a regular opted to mute it. If I wanted these distractions, I’d just…work from home. This home office has led me to be more counterproductive that I had hoped.

I also think our library has already one-upped this business by providing mobile printing, which allows patrons to print wirelessly from their laptops. I see no option here and wonder, should I want to print, how I go about that. No clear information was given or appears readily available. [Note to self: signage and directions regarding technology usage must be easily visible.] Not that it matters because I’m running out of juice and there are only three outlets in view–none of which are easily accessible save for a few seats across the room.

But maybe it’s just me. The seats are 1/4 full so far and everyone seems to be plugging away at their respective endeavors. I wonder if, once a more accurately developed virtual office is in place at the library, people will opt for the free workspace. We shall see.

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