From “Trading Spaces: Science Libraries Confront Print's Decline” (The Chronicle):
Such changes [i.e., libraries with fewer printed books] are coming first in fields related to science and technology because academics in those disciplines favor journals as the scholarly literature of significance, Mr. Lowry said. And unlike books, most journals are available online and accessed online by their users.
Even as scholars in the humanities and social sciences become more accustomed to doing their work online, Ms. Kenney and her colleagues say the digital world is not yet ready for all types of research. "Our special collections will continue to grow and develop," she said, though online collections are "definitely the future for many disciplines."
For an interesting case of the library as a place of inspiration, see “University Library, or Fortress From a Sci-Fi Dream World?” (The Chronicle). Similarly, the Radcliffe Camera may have been an inspiration for J. R. R. Tolkien.