Extravagant Joy: Digital Libraries, the Illusion of Abundance and the Fragmentation of Learning
Google's dream of digitizing all of the world's books, the vast numbers of resources already available in digital form and the ever increasing portability and connectivity of devices for accessing data creates the illusion that we are further along in the quest for universal access to information than, in fact, we are. Along with this has arisen the notion that the physical library is becoming rapidly obsolete. Data on the emerging habits of researchers and the superficial engagement that is developing in our relationship with information suggests a lack of focus that militates against learning. The library - both as a physical place and as a virtual presence - has the opportunity and the responsibility to provide order, direction and instruction to recreate itself as a progressive institution of learning.
Keywords: Digital Libraries, Physical Libraries, Research Methods
Head of Technical Services, Mark Twain Archivist