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beth gourley

The Library in the New Age - The New York Review of Books - 0 views

  • four fundamental changes in information technology since humans learned to speak.
  • around 4000 BC, humans learned to write.
  • the invention of writing was the most important technological breakthrough in the history of humanity
  • ...62 more annotations...
  • second technological shift when the codex replaced the scroll sometime soon after the beginning of the Christian era. By the third century AD, the codex—that is, books with pages that you turn as opposed to scrolls that you roll
  • eventually included differentiated words (that is, words separated by spaces
  • other reader's aids
  • codex, in turn, was transformed by the invention of printing with movable type in the 1450s.
  • technology of printing did not change for nearly four centuries, but the reading public grew larger and larger, thanks to improvements in literacy, education, and access to the printed word.
  • fourth great change, electronic communication
  • movable type to the Internet, 524 years;
  • writing to the codex, 4,300 years;
  • codex to movable type, 1,150 years;
  • would argue that the new information technology should force us to rethink the notion of information itself.
  • Internet to search engines, nineteen years
  • search engines to Google's algorithmic relevance ranking, seven years;
  • continued at such a rate as to seem both unstoppable and incomprehensible.
  • continuity I have in mind has to do with the nature of information itself or, to put it differently, the inherent instability of texts.
  • every age was an age of information, each in its own way, and that information has always been unstable.
    • beth gourley
  • pace of change seems breathtaking:
  • news has always been an artifact and that it never corresponded exactly to what actually happened.
  • News is not what happened but a story about what happened.
  • aving learned to write news, I now distrust newspapers as a source of information, and I am often surprised by historians who take them as primary sources for knowing what really happened
  • newspapers should be read for information about how contemporaries construed events, rather than for reliable knowledge of events
  • We live in a time of unprecedented accessibility to information that is increasingly unreliable. Or do we?
  • as messages that are constantly being reshaped in the process of transmission
  • Instead of firmly fixed documents, we must deal with multiple, mutable texts. By studying them skeptically on our computer screens, we can learn how to read our daily newspaper more effectively—and even how to appreciate old books.
  • Unbelievers used to dismiss Henry Clay Folger's determination to accumulate copies of the First Folio edition of Shakespeare as the mania of a crank.
  • When Folger's collection grew beyond three dozen copies, his friends scoffed at him as Forty Folio Folger.
  • eighteen of the thirty-six plays in the First Folio had never before been printed
  • only two were reprinted without change from earlier quarto editions
  • extual stability never existed in the pre-Internet eras.
  • Piracy was so pervasive in early modern Europe that best-sellers could not be blockbusters as they are today
  • They abridged, expanded, and reworked texts as they pleased, without worrying about the authors' intentions.
  • question in perspective by discussing two views of the library, which I would describe as grand illusions—grand and partly true.
  • o put it positively, there is something to be said for both visions, the library as a citadel and the Internet as open space.
  • We have come to the problems posed by Google Book Search.
  • Google proposal seemed to offer a way to make all book learning available to all people, or at least those privileged enough to have access to the World Wide Web
  • will open up possibilities for research involving vast quantities of data, which could never be mastered without digitization
  • Electronic Enlightenment, a project sponsored by the Voltaire Foundation of Oxford
  • scholars will be able to trace references to individuals, books, and ideas throughout the entire network of correspondence that undergirded the Enlightenment
  • notably American Memory sponsored by the Library of Congress[1] and the Valley of the Shadow created at the University of Virginia[2] —have demonstrated the feasibility and usefulness of databases on this scale
  • will make research libraries obsolete
  • 2. Although Google pursued an intelligent strategy by signing up five great libraries, their combined holdings will not come close to exhausting the stock of books in the United States.
  • 1. According to the most utopian claim of the Googlers, Google can put virtually all printed books on-line.
  • If Google missed this book, and other books like it, the researcher who relied on Google would never be able to locate certain works of great importance.
  • On the contrary, Google will make them more important than ever. To support this view, I would like to organize my argument around eight points.
  • For books under copyright, however, Google will probably display only a few lines at a time, which it claims is legal under fair use.
  • 3. Although it is to be hoped that the publishers, authors, and Google will settle their dispute, it is difficult to see how copyright will cease to pose a problem.
  • But nothing suggests that it will take account of the standards prescribed by bibliographers, such as the first edition to appear in print or the edition that corresponds most closely to the expressed intention of the author.
  • Google defines its mission as the communication of information—right now, today; it does not commit itself to conserving texts indefinitely.
  • it has not yet ventured into special collections, where the rarest works are to be found. And of course the totality of world literature—all the books in all the languages of the world—lies far beyond Google's capacity to digitize
  • Electronic enterprises come and go. Research libraries last for centuries. Better to fortify them than to declare them obsolete
  • 5. Google will make mistakes.
  • Once we believed that microfilm would solve the problem of preserving texts. Now we know better.
  • 6. As in the case of microfilm, there is no guarantee that Google's copies will last.
  • all texts "born digital" belong to an endangered species
  • 7. Google plans to digitize many versions of each book, taking whatever it gets as the copies appear, assembly-line fashion, from the shelves; but will it make all of them available?
  • 4. Companies decline rapidly in the fast-changing environment of electronic technology.
  • No single copy of an eighteenth-century best-seller will do justice to the endless variety of editions. Serious scholars will have to study and compare many editions, in the original versions, not in the digitized reproductions that Google will sort out according to criteria that probably will have nothing to do with bibliographical scholarship.
  • 8. Even if the digitized image on the computer screen is accurate, it will fail to capture crucial aspects of a book.
  • ts physical aspects provide clues about its existence as an element in a social and economic system; and if it contains margin notes, it can reveal a great deal about its place in the intellectual life of its readers.
  • Rare book rooms are a vital part of research libraries, the part that is most inaccessible to Google. But libraries also provide places for ordinary readers to immerse themselves in books,
  • Meanwhile, I say: shore up the library.
  • I also say: long live Google, but don't count on it living long enough to replace that venerable building with the Corinthian columns.
  • he research library still deserves to stand at the center of the campus, preserving the past and accumulating energy for the future.
    The library as citadel and as the open internet both play an important and distinguishable role.
Cathy Oxley

Free Technology for Teachers: Beyond Google - Improve Your Search Results - 20 views

    " Beyond Google - AddThis Posted by Mr. Byrne at 2:12 PM Labels: Google, Internet search, teaching technology, Teaching With Technology, Technology Integration, web search, web search strategies 5 comments: SIS Media Specialist said... Geesh Richard, another great resource; like your posts are not enough. Many, many thanks. I have followed your blog for about a year and have learned SO MUCH. I understand you are from CT. Any chance we can get you to the joint annual CASL/CECA (Connecticut Association of School Librarians and Connecticut Educators Computer Association) conference next year? October 24, 2009 10:35 PM Mr. Byrne said... Yes, I am originally from Connecticut. In fact, I went to CCSU for freshman year. I'd like to come to CASL/CECA. Can you send me an email? richardbyrne (at) freetech4teachers Thanks. October 25, 2009 6:47 AM Linux and Friends said... Thanks for the amazing document. I am aware of a few of the resources listed in the document. However, many of the others are new to me. I will definitely check them out. November 2, 2009 9:45 PM dunnes said... I visited and bookmarked four sites from this post! Thank you for the great resource. Students want to use Google rather than stick to the school library catalog, but they need more instruction on how to do this. I have seen too many children search with ineffective terms, and then waste time clicking on their random results. November 8, 2009 12:38 PM Lois said... Beyond Google is a great resource. I wish I had your skills for taking what you learn and putting it together as you do. I love reading your daily blog. November 15, 2009 10:04 AM Post a Comment Links to this post Beyond Google: Improve Your Search Results While working with some of my colleagues in a workshop earlier this week, I was reminded that a lot of people aren't familiar with tools
Anne Weaver - 19 views

    A report about college students and their information-seeking strategies and research difficulties, including findings from 8,353 survey respondents from college students on 25 campuses distributed across the U.S. in spring of 2010, as part of Project Information Literacy. Respondents reported taking little at face value and were frequent evaluators of Web and library sources used for course work, and to a lesser extent, of Web content for personal use. Most respondents turned to friends and family when asking for help with evaluating information for personal use and instructors when evaluating information for course research
Cathy Oxley

Unpaywall: Free, legal access to scholarly articles! (and a couple of other strategies) - @joycevalenza NeverEndingSearch - 11 views

  • lets searchers access full-text research papers from its index of 10 million legally loaded, open-access articles.
Cathy Oxley

The Research Safari - Home - 16 views

    Tutorial for students to work through inquiry process, including badges for each step.
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