Monthly Archives: June 2021

Libraries Makerspace Team Supports Work on 6P Color Inc. with Ingenuity, Laser Cutter

A summer intern and a Libraries staff member provide support for cutting-edge technology designed to show “the colors between the colors” on screens of the future

Two Baylor professors – joined by professionals in film and video production, NASA scientists and players from the world of industry like Kodak – dreamed up a plan to expand how moviegoers perceive colors on screen, and the Baylor Libraries are pleased to help along the way. Thanks to the Moody Makerspace team, inexpensive materials, and the laser cutter, they were able to create a more convincing presentation of the effectiveness of their technology.

When Corey Carbonara and Michael Korpi began their work into expanding the palette of colors that can be displayed on screens, they knew they would face technical hurdles along the way. As their work moved from the drawing room to the prototyping phase – a process detailed in this article from Baylor’s Derek Smith – the system, which became known as 6P (for the six primary colors involved in the process) faced a new challenge: how to make its complex system understandable and demonstrable to non-scientists and potential financial backers.

In a fairly common occurrence on the Garden Level of Moody Memorial Library, Dr. Korpi was hanging around the Libraries’ Makerspace, brainstorming with Andrew Telep, assistant director of the Experiential Learning Commons. Korpi had a rough idea for a way to demonstrate the new process using a standard projector and a series of colored gel pockets within a custom-fabricated filter.

“Dr. Korpi was talking to me about how to show people how the process worked, and from our discussions I came up with a rough sketch on a whiteboard, which led to an example using Excel that included measurement and spacing,” Telep said. It was enough to pass along to Ryan Feller, the Makerspace summer intern and a senior Studio Art major from Bruceville, Texas.

Feller took the initial Excel document, converted it to a vector file in Adobe Illustrator, and created the first “sacrificial prototype” using scrap material from the Makerspace. A series of revisions later, and the final true prototype was ready, only seven days after the initial idea came from Korpi and Telep’s conversation.

Senior Studio Art major Ryan Feller poses with the various sketches and iterative prototypes of the gel filter holders he produced using the Libraries’ Makerspace

Korpi was pleased with the filter prototype and now plans to use it in presentations and demos of the 6P process for people who may become partners in the technology, which allows viewers to see “the colors between the colors” that are missed using traditional RGB color systems. Those presentations could include high-level capital investors, business partners, or film industry insiders.

“We consulted with Raymond Curtice, the engineering manager at the BRIC, who’s been involved in the 6P project along the way,” Telep said. “It represents another step in a growing relationship between the Libraries, the Lab to Market Collaborative (L2M) and the prototyping community in Waco. It’s another example of how we’re working to support R1-Tier1 research in the Libraries and providing crucial services to researchers and entrepreneurs on campus.”

For more information on the Makerspace at Moody Memorial Library, visit baylor.edu/library/makerspace.

Sha Towers and Ellen Filgo Share Insights in Liaison Librarianship Success

Associate librarian and director of Liaison Program, Ellen Hampton Filgo, and associate dean of Research and Engagement and librarian, Sha Towers don’t just work with books, they write them too. Filgo and Towers, both longtime employees of Baylor Libraries, are co-authors of the new book, Liaison Engagement Success: A Practical Guide for Librarians (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2021).

The book, which offers practical skills and strategies for liaison librarianship, recognizes that the library profession has evolved from a collections-centric to an engagement-centric model, which requires new competencies for liaisons. Moreover, Liaison Engagement Success: A Practical Guide for Librarians serves as a framework for how to better engage with diverse constituencies and stakeholders in the field of librarianship.

With a combined 40 years of experience working in library services, Filgo and Towers have spent much of their time in the library profession learning how to engage with campus constituents. Many of the strategies offered in the book are a culmination of years of experimentation, evaluation of successes and failures, reflection, and lots of relationship-building.

“For me one of the most significant aspects of this work centers on relationship building and recognizing that some of the building blocks for successful relationships might seem insignificant at first glance or perhaps not seem directly relevant to the desired outcomes,” Towers said. “This work is relational rather than transactional. Relationship building is the critical foundation to any real success,” he continued.

As leaders and liaisons in the library, Filgo and Towers have been researching and writing about academic library liaison work for many years. They’ve spent their careers thinking about how librarians engage with the faculty and students in their liaison departments, and how that engagement leads to exciting opportunities to collaborate and new ways to provide research services. Over time, they’ve found meaningful ways to approach and engage with students and faculty.

“Library public services have moved away from a passive ‘sit at the reference desk and wait for people to come ask questions’ model to a proactive ‘get out there and engage with your patrons’ model, but there aren’t a lot of books that talk about the practical ways that liaisons engage with their departments,” Filgo said. “When we had the opportunity to write that book for the Practical Guides for Librarians series, we jumped at the chance,” she continued.

Moreover, their motivation for writing this book was to share the strategies they’ve found to be successful over time. The book offers specific strategies for topics in liaison librarianship such as getting to know a user community, finding effective strategies for proactive outreach, collaborating with others for effective engagement, and evaluating and assessing the engagement that is happening. Many of the strategies in the book are focused on self-awareness, reflection and related skills such as listening, reading body-language and communicating clearly.

Liaison Engagement Success: A Practical Guide for Librarians features practical tips and case studies for engagement with different disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, STEM, arts, professional disciplines, and with non-academic units.

A common thread for the tips and tactics shared in the book is the focus on adaptability and flexibility. While Towers and Filgo recognize that every community is different, they believe the most successful liaison librarians are the ones who can adeptly pivot to respond to the ever-changing landscape of librarianship.

In addition to their own experiences, Filgo and Towers solicited stories of engagement from liaisons all over the country. Each of these people share creative ways liaisons have been able to engage with their constituents and adapt to changes from the nature of information resources to technologies, expanding literacies, new faculty, evolving pedagogies and more.

By gathering these supplemental stories, Towers and Filgo crowdsourced expertise to provide examples of creative engagement spanning a variety of subjects from art, journalism and film to biology, health studies and engineering.

Towers and Filgo hope that those who read their book will walk away with the confidence that they can be successful in their jobs. Moreover, the two authors’ wish for readers is to feel equipped with a feast of suggestions and advice for how to think about successfully engaging with their constituents, ultimately leading to rewarding and enriching work.

Published by Rowman & Littlefield, Liaison Engagement Success: A Practical Guide for Librarians will be available for paperback, eBook and hardcover purchase in June 2021, but is available for pre-order now by the publisher, on Amazon and at select bookstores.