Karl Miller wrote:
> "Steven C. Barr(x)" <[log in to unmask]> wrote: ****Again, as you note, the folks in charge of them seem to be lockedinto a fast-fading past...quite possibly because their positions(and status and income) came from taking course after course in"Library Science"...which taught them, mainly, one thing...howto acquire, catalog, shelve, store, lend out, promote, what haveyou...BOOKS! Yes...printed, bound collections of paper pages...which, although they are interesting as artifacts, take up a LOTof space (unlike digital ones and zeroes...!)
There are many more libraries that contain recordings, microfiche, film,
photos and items in museums than just books, and library schools are not
locked into a fast fading past. Librarians are indeed involved with
technology, business, and even international trade with courses at the
library school. The University of Michigan has a mandatory course in
Quantitative/Qualitative research, not just literature searching.
University of Washington mandates library students develop their own web
pages and databases along with taxonomies.
> Library schools are making substantive progress, but they are tied to faculties who were brought up in the linear information environment. When they do apply the technology it is often to adapt the non-linear world of electronic information to the linearity of the printed page or web page.
This is probably somewhat true, but there are many librarians working at
Google, Microsoft, and Apple as well as Biotechnology firms that were
tutored in library school by those fuddy duddies you think are only linear.
> Libraries have used the technology to automate the linearity to which they are used to. One could ask that if libraries were able to pool their resources to develop machine readable cataloging, why did they not pool their resources to develop an internet search engine. For me the answer resides in the notions of "control" that are implicit in a linear information environment.
I certainly have wondered why it hasn't been the librarians who have
developed search engines, but many have been at the shoulders that write
code. The problems are with Taxonomy and Thesauri...and distinguishing
between say repair parts as in "clarinet parts" and musical parts as in
"clarinet music parts." It is the cataloging (basically the description
of a thing.) that helps the search engines find what is relevant...to
which librarians take the lead in any industry.
> As they say, the cheese has been moved, and for me, libraries still seem to be looking in the same place...even if they are using the computer to do so.