Digital Frontier

Pam McCluskey, who held the title of Cybrarian, was a force in bringing computer education to the library. She taught classes and labs, offered weekly tech support to patrons, and founded a robotics club and Project Code Spring, an afterschool program that became so popular it had to stop accepting participants for lack of computers and data capacity, said library Director Jen McCreery.

The momentum from these programs led to the Innovation and Learning Center, under construction in a space formerly used by the Friends of the Desmond-Fish to store used books for its annual sale.

The center was funded through donations, state grants and contributions from NewYork-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital, the Cold Spring Lions Club and the library’s trustees, McCreery said. More than $175,000 has been raised, with another $10,000 to go and a matching grant in place through Dec. 31.

A design by Janko Rasic Inc. of the new technology center at the Desmond-Fish Library “It’s a space that’s for the community, so the community can have a lot of say in what’s offered,” he says. Project Code Spring will continue and, if there’s a demand, a session specifically for girls will be offered, he says. Biracree sees the Innovation and Learning Center compelling children and teenagers to interact with not just machines but each other.

Here is a sampling of what the Innovation and Learning Center at the Desmond-Fish Library in Garrison plans to offer:

An Oculus virtual-reality headset

3-D printers, printing services and a 3-D scanner A recycler that turns plastics into 3-D printer raw material High-end digital equipment for drawing and moviemaking High-end video and photo software A recording studio Three green screens, including one for stop-motion A robotics studio and flooring in a pattern easily recognized by robots Two walls to display panel-light programming An interactive whiteboard for videoconferencing A head-mounted Google Glass An Oculus virtual-reality headset

Pam McCluskey during a Project Code Spring session at the former “ad hoc” corner used for computer education in the library’s basement. (Photo provided)

For more on the plans, see desmondfish.wixsite.com. The Innovation and Learning Center will have the same hours as the library.

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