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Libraries and the Future

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Libraries and the Future explores how the trends and technological breakthroughs of today will transform the shape of libraries as they move into the twenty-first century. This visionary book will help librarians and library science students understand and prepare for the changes likely to take place in library and information services over the next several years. Enlightening chapters discuss the future of academic libraries, public libraries, library services in developing countries, and library services from ...

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Overview

Libraries and the Future explores how the trends and technological breakthroughs of today will transform the shape of libraries as they move into the twenty-first century. This visionary book will help librarians and library science students understand and prepare for the changes likely to take place in library and information services over the next several years. Enlightening chapters discuss the future of academic libraries, public libraries, library services in developing countries, and library services from the perspective of scholarly users, library funders, and policymakers. These authoritative contributors present a wide-range of viewpoints but they all agree that the near future offers great opportunity for libraries to make their services more valuable to the community of potential users than they have ever been before. Libraries and the Future provides the way for libraries to be active forces, to emphasize the delivery of information, not its storage, and to be judged by the services they deliver, not the assets they control.

Readers will learn about a realm of possible types of future libraries from experts representing academic, special, and public libraries, and researchers and scholarly users of libraries from four continents. Some of the visions of future libraries from these respected information professionals include:

  • the library as the hub of a community network
  • libraries that actively determine for themselves how to use information technology
  • libraries that utilize technology to meet national social, technological, and cultural demands of developing countries
  • artificial intelligence and expert system approaches in library-related applications
  • the virtual library and information center where print, database, and other formats are replaced by holographic images and where the world’s store of recorded knowledge is available without leaving home

    This inspirational book calls for librarians to be more imaginative and to move outside traditional library roles and into broader information roles, as libraries begin to take full advantage of the technology at their disposal. Libraries and the Future encourages librarians to take greater leadership roles, and to use rapidly developing technology to enhance the information services the library provides. Managers of all types of libraries, especially large libraries, will benefit from valuable predictions about the future challenges they may face, and suggestions for changes in the role of the today’s libraries. Faculty and students in the areas of library management, sociology of libraries, and library technology will learn how their knowledge and training of this century will be used in the library systems of the future.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Predictions about the course of technological trends in libraries and the provision of information are unreliable especially when they lack focus and when the proposed visions have been developed with little practical connection to the present. Such is the case with most of the 11 essays in Libraries and the Future , the tenor and authority of which are provided by works of fantasy and science fiction, including two references to Star Trek . The essays often rely on vacuous imperatives ``we need to . . . ''; ``libraries must . . . '' in order to propel their arguments. Meanwhile, they repeat forecasts, which, these days, are rather obvious and unimaginative: CD-ROMs will remain serviceable for storage and retrieval of information; remote access will allow information seekers to work from their homes or businesses; privatization of certain kinds of information will increase; and so on. A ``virtual information center'' depicted in one essay is as likely to provoke nausea as amazement. Curiously, the most instructive essay describes the current state of libraries in Brazil. A superior treatment of the theme may be found in a special issue of Representations , No. 42, ``Future Libraries,'' Univ. of California Pr., Spring 1993. Not recommended.-- Dean Rowan, Whitter P.L., Cal.
Booknews
Presents a glorious view of libraries of the future, glistening with technology that will put all information at the fingertips of everyone anytime. Libraries will be centers of the community, will choose the best technology for a particular case, will help underdeveloped countries, and provide holographic images to people's homes. Nothing about funding, security, competition from private information services, or lack of public interest. Paper edition (unseen), $21.95. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781560243823
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 1/28/1993
  • Series: Original Book Series
  • Pages: 195
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Contents
Introduction: Threat Versus Opportunity

  • Shaping the Future for Libraries Through Leadership and Research
  • Libraries as Bridges: Librarians as Builders
  • The Neographic Library: A 30-Year Perspective on Public Libraries
  • Visions of Academic Libraries in a Brave New Future
  • The Library of the Future
  • Libraries and Information Services in 25 Years’ Time: A British Perspective
  • Libraries and Information Services in Third World Countries
  • Perspectives for Information Services and Professionals in Brazil
  • The Metamorphosis of Libraries During the Foreseeable Future
  • Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems: How Will They Contribute?
  • The Virtual Information Center: Scholars and Information in the Twenty-First Century
  • Index
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