I coordinate a very small (~1000 volumes) shared library for 100 churches in Chicagoland. Our circulation is dropping with constituents up to 50 miles away. If our checkout system involved a QR code to scan on the back of the book, plus an SMS option for those without smartphones (“Text 1234 to 567890 to check out this book”) I could make the case for just about any geographically distributed layout (i.e. “branches”) since self-checkout could happen anywhere, anytime, with no infrastructure demands on any “branch”.
Have you heard of such a checkout option out there, or a flexible database that would hook into a setup like this?