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OT for Ann: The Library of the Future

Sundanceh's picture
Posts: 4408
Joined: Jun 2009

Saw this article and my mind went immediately to you....

What caught me was how you described how connected you were with the physical holding of a book, instead of the faceless e-reader.  This article touches on some of that lost art....and how books will not be totally going away. 

Somehow, the loss of books would equate to a certain part of society that sees it as antiquated in a time gone-by sort of era...

Like we would discover them in some of kind of thrift shop as a curiosity item, like Michael J. Fox found the Sports Almanac in the move Back to the Future...

And I always think of the Ray Bradbury story of Farenheit 451....where fire fighters did not fight fires.....they burned books. 

Anyway....just for my librarian gal...



tanstaafl's picture
Posts: 1299
Joined: Oct 2010

A very dangerous future, as "content providers" try to turn everything into a subscription whose price escalates with time and nothing is owned.  Then the public library can't afford your life saving journal or job creating literature.    Right along with the lack of best copy deposit requirements and the indefinite/infinite copyrights we are seeing, today's media could become an evaporated digital dark age.  

MaryCarol5's picture
Posts: 102
Joined: May 2013

I remember how excited I was as a child to go to the local library and visit my cozy little section, use my "card" with my name on it, and take home different books every couple of weeks.  And I remember the way the books smelled, it was nice.  Even today, our little library in the same little building, across the street from our little red school house (true story) has brought so many smiles and the love of reading to my own children.  I would hate to see the future little ones not ever experience turning the pages.  How sad that would be. 

lilacbrroller's picture
Posts: 412
Joined: Jun 2012

A couple of weeks ago at work I had to visit this department of suspicious uptight people. Well, they have a library and that day I found myself exiting their offices through this library. It is in a small alcove and contains tall rolling shelves of law books.  I don't know    What came over me but as I walked past those books I could smell them a bit and was reminded of my university days. i was overpowered by the desire to stand closer to the books, breathe in and remember. So I looked around to see if anyone was watching and then pressed my face close to the stacks and breathed in. It was olfactory time travel! Thank goodness I was not caught - I was not sure how I would explain this, and the custodians of the library do not have a sense of humor. 

so yes, I agree. There's nothing like real books!

Posts: 1607
Joined: Aug 2012

I meant to reply about the ebooks.  I agree - love holding a "real book" but I gotta say I really love my kindle!!   My sis and I bought one for my mom after her hand surgery and it has been really great for her as holding the weight of a book is difficult.  The ereaders are also great for vacations.   Funny thing is my kids prefer to read a real book and don't really like reading on the kindle.    As a matter of fact, I'm leaving in 20 mins to pick my daughter up from her last day of finals and head to the library to get the summer reading books started! 

We have great summer memories of hanging out at the library after spending the mornings swimming!   Our town has had great summer reading programs that have kept the kids reading - especially in the earlier grades. 

annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

I remember when the e-readers first started getting popular...lots of freaking out in the library world.  But we've had them for a while now, and I don't honestly see physical books disappearing anytime soon.  My daughters both prefer to read a physical book, although they use their computers to read more ephemeral stuff, like the daily news.  I think both mediums will be around for some time to come.

And really, libraries are already "long" on technology.  Where I worked, we certainly had plenty of books (and movies, magazines, etc), but we also had a ton of computer stations, and plenty of access to electronic books.  We were always packed with people, and while many were using the computers, our circulation numbers were pretty high.  People came in for many other reasons too...we had art shows, family storytimes (that was my speciality!), ESL classes, and a lot more for all ages.  Very much a community resource...and an essential component of any democracy, imo.

And I just read an article that said young people still consider libraries to be a critical part of society, in numbers equal to us old folks, so I'm pretty hopeful about the future of libraries.  I don't think they'll be going anywhere anytime soon!

Lots o' love (of books!)~AA

barbebarb's picture
Posts: 464
Joined: Oct 2011

My son bought me a kindle but I like a book in my hands too.

I love the kindle for Internet use and the software it came with.

Its somewhat a hybrid of a portable device for many uses.
I like its portability.

Libraries are awesome. There is something intriguing with all the
resource information and a quiet atmosphere.


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