"Me Too!" Data

In his monthly coulmn 'Technically Speaking' (February 2007, American Libraries), Andrew Pace wrote:

“The lines between desktop and intranet, and extranet and internet, continue to blur…will libraries continue to be the hotspot for…finding?”

I hope so too, but it also appears that, to paraphrase Andrew, the lines between library and extranet and intranet continue to blur. As a result, the library may stop being a destination for discovery of particular physical items, as it blends into what is becoming an infinite, homogeneous body of bits (the haystack-sorry for using that again..:-).

Yet, a side effect to the development of search engines is a new situation where information WANTS to be found and the competition over screen real estate and ranking is getting sophisticated and fierce.

This, in my opinion, represents a real danger for making true discovery possible in the future. And here, I think is also the opportunity for the transformation of librarians and library science – guiding the development of search and discovery tools in a way that will make original discovery possible.

First posted on: Thursday, March 08, 2007