Just yesterday, I reported on the Yobot, a robot arm that will be stationed at a Yotel near Times Square New York, and its job is to take ones bag for safekeeping and file it with others.
This Joe and Rika Mansueto Library at the University of Chicago looks rather similar in operation, but it is essentially a robot librarian and not a bag check-in. It has about 35,000 metal bins in a five story chamber, which is enough for millions of books.
If a patron wants a particular book, he or she can request it, and one of the robot arms fetches it from the five story chamber located underneath the new section of the library. The books are not sorted by any sort of Dewey Decimal System or other numerical classification, but by size.
This is slightly more efficient than human-stocked libraries, as older books don’t have to be shifted around in order to make room for newer books. All that is required is adding a new shelf, and make certain that the book is entered into the new digital system. Of course, this does create a problems should there be some sort of power outage.
Not only is this subterranean method of organization pretty cool, but the new edition to the library is a very cool egg-shaped dome structure. It cost enough to build at $81 million.