Posts Tagged ‘library programming’

Halo and Clever Kids

I don’t mind the game. Honestly, I don’t. I’m a science fiction and fantasy fan, so really, the basic premise is fine. And of course, who doesn’t want to be an amazing “fighter/warrior/marine,” the underdog, who takes on the Covenant, one mission at a time, one day of reckoning after another? Looks like some kind of fun.

That is, until last week when suddenly, out of fourteen computers on our main floor in the library, there were 12 kids who were playing Halo on our computers. . . . against each other.

How did they do that? That kind of game would normally bring our bandwidth to its knees.

So here were all these middle and high school boys (ok, there was one girl) on our computers and the place was quiet, too quiet? apparently, they were either using headsets or they simply played without the sound. That’s a lot of shooting; I thought the gun sounds were part of the fun.

Anywayyyyy, as much as I enjoyed having the kids, I had to find out how they were accomplishing this feat. It turned out that one (or more of them) had figured out how to get the game on a thumb drive, download it temporarily onto a computer and then the rest of the kids would access the game through our local LAN. I didn’t even know such a thing was possible.

I called our computer department to give them a heads up and sure enough, a few days later I got the verdict: although the kids hadn’t done any damage to our network yet, the chance for a virus to piggyback onto an illegal bootleg copy of the game was high. The kids had to cease and desist.

In a way, I felt bad. They were having a blast. I even heard kids saying, with shocked voices, “Wow, man, we were playing Halo at the library!” Yes, for those few days, the buzz was big, and the library was a cool place to go.

Gotta figure out how to capture that excitement legally. Sigh.

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Special Event at the Branch

Here’s what happens when you have a special event in a small branch:

  • Everyone is nervous because we may only have ten people show up.
  • Everyone is nervous because we may have 200 people show up.
  • What if the speaker doesn’t show?
  • What if the speaker is boring?
  • What if it turns into a political nightmare?
  • We’re having the state’s attorney general here today from 3:30 to 4:30 pm. We have put out over 100 posters, 200 postcard size flyers into the hands of patrons, and sent out two e-news letters, one to the entire system (16,000 emails) and one to the local set (400 emails). We even have flyers taped to the bathroom stalls. This is an all out effort.

    Check back tomorrow to see what happens! 🙂