Thursday, January 27, 2011

Revisiting the Library in 2050

I recently read a criticism of a book that claimed it would require a book just as large to correct the author’s mistakes. I felt a similar response to “Academic Library Autopsy Report, 2050” (The Chronicle), which was initially published with the title “Death by Irony: How Librarians Killed the Academic Library.” Fortunately, someone took the time to respond to it point by point: “The Library's End? A Long Way Off” (The Chronicle).

So, for example, this statement: 
Fully digitized collections of nearly every book in the world rendered physical book collections unnecessary. 
is answered with this: 
In 2050, students, faculty, and researchers get their content from a variety of electronic resources ... But working with rare books, archives, and artifacts remains an essential component of pedagogy and research in many disciplines.
For a view of libraries in 2010, see OCLC’s Perceptions of Libraries, 2010: Context and Community.