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May 13, 2005

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Palo Alto Online

Publication Date: Friday, May 13, 2005

News Digest News Digest (May 13, 2005)

Library Department to study radio frequency technology

During the next fiscal year, Palo Alto library officials will study using radio frequencies to check in and out materials if the City Council approves funds for the study as part of the city's budget process.

If the study concludes the technology is feasible, the city could purchase it for Palo Alto libraries the following year. Implementing such a program in all five Palo Alto libraries is roughly estimated to cost $800,000.

The technology is technically known as radio frequency identification, or RFID. It works by placing microchips in the tags affixed to library materials. Those microchips are read using radio frequency technology.

It is being looked at as a possible way to ease the check-in process of materials, Library Director Paula Simpson said.

With the current bar code system, books and materials have to be handled one a time. But with the RFID technology, seven or eight books could be checked in or out at one time.

On Tuesday, the Finance Committee tentatively approved the Library Department's budget, which includes $45,000 for the study and development of a plan. On Thursday night, the committee was scheduled to review all requests for new capital projects, such as the new technology project.

The city's budget is scheduled to be approved by the City Council in June.
--Bill D'Agostino
Palo Alto Intergenerational Week coming

Children and adults of all ages are invited to share play times, have a community swim, enjoy a free movie and popcorn, and share wisdom, food and song May 15-20 as part of Palo Alto's Intergenerational Week celebration.

The events are part of a nationwide effort to make connections across generations as part of building a thriving community.

One highlight of the week will be a community intergenerational swim at the Palo Alto Family YMCA, 3412 Ross Road, on Sunday, May 15, 1 to 5 p.m.

A free showing of the film, "Whale Rider," will occur on Friday, 6:30 p.m. in the Ventura Community Center multipurpose room -- with free popcorn -- at 3990 Ventura Court.

The Intergenerational Vegetable Garden at Waverley Street and Embarcadero Road will be open for visits daily.

Dialogues and wisdom-sharing at Avenidas senior center, 450 Bryant St., will occur daily from 3:30 to 5 p.m., and at other locations and times. For a full list of activities and locations call Sheila Mandoli at (650) 493-2361, ext. 19.
--Sue Dremann

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