Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Bye, Bye, Library CBS News
The University of Texas tosses the books from its Undergrad Library.

What's left - an "academic center" - isn't a bad thing to have, but from this chair the Internet and conversation pits still aren't as educational as a perusal through orderly collections.

Now, just yesterday, I observed the same effort taking place at Ohio State. (Is the coincidence related to the Longhorns-Buckeyes "Showdown at the Shoe" next month?) At OSU, they'll build a "Learning Commons" where the Undergrad library once was. The more recent inhabitant--the Education library--will remain; it will house journals, but no books. (Given that the print subscriptions seem to be lapsing by the week; and there were no actual textbooks or readers in the "education" library, the loss may be negligible.) You can peruse the Learning Commons / Library Futures Committee Bibliography.

All of this presages the need for us to succeed here. If libraries are saying goodbye to books, well,...the Net needs to be much better.

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