School library goes bookless

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by clear, Sep 5, 2009.

  1. clear

    clear Member

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    Welcome to the library. Say goodbye to the books.
    By David Abel | September 4, 2009

    A 144-year-old prep school discards its "outdated" 20,000-book collection.

    Article Here:A library without the books - The Boston Globe

    Thoughts?

    Ciao-

    T.D.
     
  2. jason_els

    jason_els <img border="0" src="/images/badges/gold_member.gi

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    It would be cool if the school provided each student with a Kindle or similar e-ink reader and allowed unlimited access to books stored on a school server. Expecting kids to buy every book they may want to check out is ridiculous. When doing research, how many potential books do you examine for pertinent data before finding the few which address your exact need? You can't do that without a library-supported collection.

    If the library had digitized their entire collection or purchased a digital library for free use to students and faculty, complete with cross-referenced indexes, I'd be perfectly fine with that. But they didn't. I think the idea is sound but the execution is highly flawed. Why not simply deliver the content to the individual student? That way each student can access the resources they need in the classroom, their dorm, study hall, or anywhere else on campus.
     
  3. clear

    clear Member

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    Because, Jason, what you suggest makes to much sense. Why would they take the most logical and simplest approach?...lol :tongue:

    The fact is, this trend needs it's trailblazers. And like trailblazers of other human endeavors/achievements, they sometimes get it wrong the first time around. But the fact that this school choose to be the first to make that kind of leap, does speak volumes about their ambitions and future goals. Now whether that's a good or bad thing, remains to be seen. On a different front, though, a possible solution might be within reach.

    It turns out that over the past decade or so, the Library of Congress has been in partnership with the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (and other libraries, archives, and educational/cultural institutions around the world), to develop the World Digital Library. Why not expand this online/digitized archive, into a truly global/all-encompassing one, buy doing it for all published works/media; and not just for the artifacts regulated to antiquities or whose copyright protections have long expired? That way, you could license out access to the archive to none educational institutions (thereby funding it's operational cost), and make it free for most everyone else (or have each memeber nation assembling it, cover the tab). No matter the case, in situations like that of the school in the above article, their "learning center's" would make more sense. Ultimately, I think this is where things are going (Snow Crash anyone?).

    In anycase, I completely agree with your assesments Jason. And to add, I think the comments of one of the authers mentioned in the aticle says it best.

    "There are modes of learning and thinking that at the moment are only available from actual books,&#8217;&#8217; he said. &#8220;There is a kind of deep-dive, meditative reading that&#8217;s almost impossible to do on a screen. Without books, students are more likely to do the grazing or quick reading that screens enable, rather than be by themselves with the author&#8217;s ideas."​


    Regards,

    T.D.

    Ciao-:cool:
     
    #3 clear, Sep 5, 2009
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2009
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