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Melrose Center Grand Opening – Feb. 8th

By Posted in - Events & Makerspace on January 31st, 2014 0 Comments

The Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation & Creativity will open to the public with a ribbon cutting at noon on Saturday, February 8th. Ampersand will have a table as one of the Center’s educational partners. We are excited to collaborate with all of our partners that are bringing making opportunities to students in the Central Florida area, especially the Melrose Center.

About the Center:
Central Florida is a center of creativity and technology. Libraries are centers for learning. The Orange County Library System believes that we can use our experience as providers of informal learning and technology education to provide services for community members to gain the understanding required to be both contributor to, developer for and consumer of today’s emerging technologies.

Through a generous gift from the Kendrick B. Melrose Family Foundation, the Library is developing the Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation and Creativity. Named for Mr. Melrose’s mother who had a strong interest in emerging technologies, the Center will be located in 26,000 sq. ft. of space on the Orlando Public Library’s second floor.

In pursuit of our “lifelong learner” role, the Library already offers over 1,000 classes per month across 15 locations. Recognized by the American Library Association as a “Library of the Future”, this program consists of nearly 200 unique curricula ranging from introduction to mouse and keyboard to creating web pages in HTML 5. We teach some of today’s top software packages such as QuickBooks and Photoshop, as well as many open source options such as Audacity and Gimp. We also offer live online learning and recorded tutorials available via the Web. Outside of the technology arena, we offer a range of children’s programs supporting early learning and programs for adults that expose and introduce topics of interest from opening your own food truck, to CPR, to self publishing your own eBook.

The Center will greatly expand this current role. Building upon the very practical training that is currently offered, the Center will offer hardware, equipment, software, support and programming to inspire and invigorate creativity and accomplishment.

Currently our key service directions are:

Video: Services dedicated to the creation, production and editing of video. Green screen capability and 3-D graphic creation.

Audio: Sound recording and mixing.

Fabrication: To meet the interest in the “maker movement” the Center will support design creation and production through equipment like 3D printers and laser cutters

Technology Exploration: We hope to support curiosity and general exploration into the possibilities that technology represents. Taking advantage of platforms like Arduino or devices like Raspberry Pi, we hope to stimulate interest in the STEM disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

The role of the Center is not to compete with professional and/or formal education in the area. We intend to provide introductory and “amateur” enthusiasts an opportunity for hands on exploration, experimentation and experience. We will also focus on the use of open source resources such as Blender for 3D creation and Audacity for music.

The Center will be designed with collaboration and sharing in mind. We hope that the “cross pollination” of ideas represented by these various disciplines will provide a natural environment for spontaneous idea generation. A presentation theatre will allow for presentations from experts in the range of fields of interest represented in the Center.

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