February 15, 2008

Syracuse Library Game Lab Gets Funding from Gaylord

Shout out to Gay­lordg for help­ing get this project off the ground.

Pro­fes­sor receives grant to bring gam­ing to libraries, other campuses

[Scott] Nichol­son, an asso­ciate pro­fes­sor in the School of Infor­ma­tion Stud­ies, recently received a $5,000 grant from Gay­lord Broth­ers, a library sup­ply com­pany located in Syra­cuse, to begin build­ing a portable library game lab. Money from the grant will specif­i­cally go toward pur­chas­ing pro­jec­tors, con­soles, screens, acces­sories and games, Nichol­son said.

This was a great way for Gay­lord to sup­port Syra­cuse Uni­ver­sity, the com­mu­nity and gam­ing libraries in gen­eral,; said Henry Orr, direc­tor of busi­ness devel­op­ment at Gay­lord. He also noted that the credit for the grant should go to Gaylord’s Pres­i­dent and CEO Guy Marhewka.…

Nicholson’s goal is to explore the impli­ca­tions of offer­ing gam­ing as a library ser­vice. Addi­tion­ally, he hopes to study the entire gam­ing expe­ri­ence and how gam­ing will change the atti­tudes of stu­dents toward the library.

Gam­ing activ­i­ties are like the new cof­fee shop in Bird Library; it’s not about the cof­fee so much as the social atmos­phere it cre­ates,’ Nichol­son said.…

Gam­ing is cur­rently the wild, wild west of libraries,’ Orr said.…

The Library Game Lab project will occur in three main phases, depend­ing on the avail­abil­ity of out­side fund­ing. Nichol­son has been work­ing on the first phase of the project for the past year, work­ing with stu­dents to sur­vey libraries and how they view gaming.…

The project’s cur­rent phase, to cre­ate a portable library game lab, will be fol­lowed by the next phase, to increase aware­ness about the project.

With this project, I will travel to library con­fer­ences and expose librar­i­ans to the spec­trum of games, talk about what types of games are best for cer­tain demo­graphic groups with libraries and col­lect more data about what is hap­pen­ing,’ Nichol­son said.

The third and final phase of the project will be to set up research projects, which will explore how the dif­fer­ent types of games relate to dif­fer­ent types of people.

This will be the ongo­ing life of the lab — to ana­lyze new games and game types, to rec­om­mend the best games for dif­fer­ent goals and demo­graphic groups and to work with indus­try to help them cre­ate gam­ing expe­ri­ences more suited for a library/school set­ting,’ Nichol­son said.

Nichol­son said as soon as he is able to secure more fund­ing to build the pro­gram, he hopes to start aggres­sively draw­ing in stu­dents to help with the project. So far he has relied heav­ily on vol­un­teers to help with research and pro­mot­ing the pro­gram. In addi­tion, Nichol­son is teach­ing a graduate-level iSchool class in May on gam­ing in libraries, and it has already received con­sid­er­able stu­dent interest.

There has been both sup­port and crit­i­cism from the Syra­cuse com­mu­nity at large regard­ing the Library Game Lab, but Nichol­son said the key is get­ting peo­ple to under­stand that this is not about ‘first per­son shoot­ers,’ but rather about ‘under­stand­ing how gam­ing works as a ser­vice and how libraries and schools can be engaged.’ ” [The Daily Orange]

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6:17 am Comments (4)


  1. […] Vir­ginia Uni­ver­sity Syra­cuse Library Game Lab Gets Fund­ing from Gay­lord » This Sum­mary is from an arti­cle posted at The Shifted Librar­ian on Fri­day, Feb­ru­ary 15, 2008 […]

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  2. […] Syra­cuse Library Game Lab Gets Fund­ing from Gay­lord In addi­tion, Nichol­son is teach­ing a graduate-level iSchool class in May on gam­ing in libraries, and it has already received considerable… […]

    Pingback by Teaching on The Finance World For News and Information Around The World On Finance » Syracuse Library Game Lab Gets Funding from Gaylord — February 15, 2008 @ 8:16 am

  3. Wow, that is cool. I think peo­ple need to real­ize that cre­at­ing a portable gam­ing cen­ter is eas­ier than it sounds. After you have bought the con­sole, a dig­i­tal pro­jec­tor will put that show on the road. Not that dig­i­tal pro­jec­tors are cheap, but even the old dusty one we have works real well.

    At MPOW we are get­ting ready to take the wii to senior cen­ters and do a lit­tle library song and dance, and then play some games.

    And why does FPS games scare peo­ple so much? It feels like you have to present gam­ing as all cute and cud­dly. Believe me this is not the rea­sons most peo­ple are into gaming.

    Comment by royce — February 15, 2008 @ 12:06 pm

  4. To quote a friend: “I do think that videogames are a great oppor­tu­nity to help us bridge a gap in ser­vice to the kinds of peo­ple who tend to be engi­neers. Of course, we’d also do that by hav­ing decent sci-fi and fan­tasy col­lec­tions (sci-fi is par­tic­u­larly pathetic at most libraries), a bet­ter selec­tion of audio­books (pathetic every­where, even when you fac­tor in Over­drive), and more techie man­u­als. These are think­ing, intel­li­gent, active peo­ple who hardly use the library at all, which is a shame, since they’re the kind of fun peo­ple we’d like to have around (and who don’t need to be escorted away in police cars). ”

    She works in a library where they don’t have 2 cop cars show­ing up every day haul­ing away or toss­ing peo­ple out of the library. I do. It’s all in how you look at things.

    Comment by LarryN the LibraryN — February 16, 2008 @ 8:30 am

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