Library’s sign-in system signs out

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A freshman signs into the library using the current Mandarin library sign-in system. (Photo/Kristen Quesada)

Students may wonder why every time they step into the library, whether for two minutes or two hours, they are required to sign in. The simplest explanation is that this sign-in system works as a precautionary measure. 

“In Upper School, you guys can be anywhere. If something happened, we have to know where you guys are, and I can tell very quickly with this system, ‘Yes, you’re here [in the library]’ or ‘[You’re not, you were never here.],’” Upper School Library director Mrs. Kristina Siegel said. “The school looks here first before they start looking for you anywhere else; it’s just one more layer of protection that we use.”

However, this system is getting revamped in 2020, along with many other library features. “[The company we’re working with] actually developed a new module for us with a remote server that logs scans right into the CSV,” Mrs. Siegel said. “It’s like the most beautiful thing you could ever imagine.”

All library sign-in data will automatically go to a CSV (comma-separated values) file which the library can search for specific names. This new system will also support club sign-ins, removing the need for the hassle of acquiring portable laser ID scanners by allowing iPads to do so themselves and upload the sign-in log to the main CSV file.

To streamline the sign-in process, Mrs. Siegel plans to remove the specific options in favor of simply pressing “sign-in.” “I just need to know what time you came in, how long you were here and what time you left; that’s all the deans need to know, and if your mom calls, then it’s just, ‘She was here 10 minutes ago but just signed out,’” Mrs. Siegel said.

Before the current digital sign-in system, though, the library used an even more ancient method: a physical clipboard. “We started with a clipboard sign-in January 2006, and everybody would sign in and sign out (you can only imagine how many Supermans and Batmans we had in the library),” Mrs. Siegel said.

As for the future of the library, the new developments don’t stop at a new sign-in system. “We’re doing a new college corner with a U-shaped table, and we’re going to rip out the whole back wall to fit ten more desktops and have a giant TV where we’ll scroll through what colleges are coming or awards or whatever’s going on,” she said. With the new 2500 building, however, will come a little library competition. “Dr. Laurie plans to have a satellite library lab, maybe a little cafe.”

Mrs. Siegel works on the new library sign-in system on her personal laptop. “Technology has changed, and we have to keep up with it,” she said. (Photo/Kristen Quesada)

Kristen is a senior at American Heritage School in Plantation, Fla. She is the co-Editor-in-Chief of The Patriot Post, President of Student Government and co-founder of the non-profit Friends for Fosters. Kristen loves keeping up with politics, watching Netflix, reading and sleeping in. She considers herself a nerd due to her massive video game and comic collection.

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