RFID–What’s New?

Since late 2016, the Johnson City Public Library has been transitioning to a new RFID based system. You may sure you remember our self-checkout, installed February of 2017 (or our self-checkout April Fools joke from 2016), but now we are proud to announce our automated check-in machine–AMH (Automated Materials Handler) for short–has been installed and is fully operational.

The Johnson City Public Library’s AMH is only the third of its kind in existence. This machine separates all types of materials and then sorts them into one of 8 different bins to facilitate faster shelving. This eliminates a great deal of the repetitive motion and tasks library staff were required to do both to check-in returned items and check-out items to patrons. We’re pretty excited about the AMH, and we’ll be installing a camera and TV system soon so you can watch your returned items take a ride on the AMH and land in their bin while you wait.

Robin Westphal, director of the Johnson City Public Library, says, “We are excited to be able to implement technology that not only improves the patron experience by allowing for self-checking out of materials and dramatically decreasing the amount of theft of library items, but also streamlines the entire process of checking materials in and out.  It’s also really cool, which is a bonus!”

What’s next for the Johnson City Public Library’s RFID implementation? We’ve had great success with our first self-checkout machine, and we’ll be adding 3 more July of 2018. We are also planning a special event to showcase the AMH, but we haven’t set a date yet, so keep checking here at our new website, www.jcpl.org, for further updates.


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