Posted by: pilgrimtraveler | September 13, 2010

Quoting Myself

I looked back at a some earlier thoughts I had published and they seem relevant enough to post them here for you interested folks.  I attended Computers in Libraries 2006 and then wrote this…

“Smartphones, PDAs, and increasingly smaller computers combined with wireless, bluetooth, and cellular networks make information access available on a 24 hour basis. The library is becoming less and less a particular place, but more of an ongoing electronic prescence. It isn’t that libraries don’t benefit from a home base with traditional materials, I think they do. However, the rate of information access through computers and other smart devices is rapidly increasing and the library concept must change from one of place to one of prescence.

Librarians will adapt to this change in concept by increasing opportunity for access through any device with the capability to access the information we have available. Web pages for libraries will have to be scalable to any device and any size screen. The databases we provide will have to be accessible and scalable also. We will find ourselves increasing the number of ebooks, audiobooks, music, podcasts, and movies/video that we have available and make them easily uploadable to any device in any desired format. Our catalogs will dynamically link to any of our holdings and offer them for immediate access.”

We aren’t there yet, however.  Journal database providers (EBSCO, Gale, OVID, etc.) aren’t fully onboard with scalability and multi-format access.  Also, many libraries are working in institutions where the institutions IT departments sometimes restrict what can be done related to format, accessibility, and scalability.  New media will require additional flexibility among stakeholders.

Anyway,  lots of room for growth and creative change.



  1. Someone ought to write a book on Licklider’s fascinating “Libraries of the Future,” the only book he ever wrote. The metabook could be “Libraries of the Future Revisited.” Your post got me thinking about the possibilities here–and the fact that Licklider’s book isn’t nearly as well known as (in my view) it should be….

    Looks like the Internet Archive has Licklider’s book available in their Open Library–but someone’s got it checked out just now.

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