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Old 10-08-2006, 01:29 AM   #16
NatCh
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Originally Posted by raevyn1
Biting my tongue here, guys.
Do you mind? We're pickin' on each other here.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:59 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Bob Russell
To start off, let me ask why is it better for us to read more? We all seem to just accept that without questioning it. And, for the record, I agree. But let me point out that I'm not sure that all kinds of reading are equal. I've mentioned before that I don't believe we get the same long lasting, character building and life improving benefits from gorging ourselves on the fast foods of the written word. In other words, if it takes you away from good books, you lose out on many of the benefits of reading if you are only reading all the latest tech news, newspapers and magazines and blogs. Well, except for MobileRead, which of course builds character and improves your life!
One reason to read as often as possible to avoid secondary illiteracy:

http://www.goethe.de/ges/soz/thm/en80027.htm

"A specific form of functional illiteracy is "secondary illiteracy". This is due to a lack of practice: people who are secondary illiterate are persons who have learned to read and write but have lost these skills because they do not use them in later (working) life..."

See also:
https://lists.resist.ca/pipermail/ne...ne/000779.html

--ryan

(DISCLAIMER: My wife is a real 'bona-fide' professional librarian)
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Old 10-08-2006, 05:16 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Gantrioch
My problem with public libraries is that mostly what they carry is trash reading. I know public libraries that have a larger fiction section than the non-fiction and reference sections put together. Now, there's nothing wrong with that; in fact, I probably read more trash books than anyone else. But when you need to do some real research, especially science (i.e. chemistry), public libraries have such limited resources that you're forced to go to a local university, which, for many people, isn't so local.
Public libraries have a very different mission statement from academic libraries.

Public libraries serve the general public by providing materials and media desired by the communities they serve. The presence and availability of these materials in turn promotes and supports literacy within the community (another public library mission). Public libraries also serve as information portals.

Academic libraries are specialized and very narrow in their scope and focus. Their mission is to support research and to compile reference knowledge base for academic sub-communities. Here the materials are selected far more cafefully and critically. The academic library is a workplace, not just for its staff, but also for its users and patrons.

--ryan
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Old 10-08-2006, 05:55 AM   #19
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My local library lost relevance to me personally when I realised one day that I had more Sci-Fi/Fantasy novels than they did and all my series were complete.

For many people who can't justify the extreme amount I spend on books and shelving each month the library is still a good option. However, I outgrew it.

There are a ton of reasons I would go back, for research mostly if I ever need to. In my experience though the net generally does a better job of answering my life questions than the library could and it does it from the comfort of my sofa.
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Old 10-08-2006, 06:04 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnaryry
Public libraries have a very different mission statement from academic libraries.

Public libraries serve the general public by providing materials and media desired by the communities they serve. The presence and availability of these materials in turn promotes and supports literacy within the community (another public library mission). Public libraries also serve as information portals.

Academic libraries are specialized and very narrow in their scope and focus. Their mission is to support research and to compile reference knowledge base for academic sub-communities. Here the materials are selected far more cafefully and critically. The academic library is a workplace, not just for its staff, but also for its users and patrons.

--ryan
Agreed 100%.
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Old 10-08-2006, 10:30 PM   #21
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Libraries will still be needed

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Originally Posted by pdam
I wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment ... but that was what you DID, many of the functions you mention can be easily (and possibly moreeffectively) replicated elsewhere within a college. Should the library service (or building) really perform all of these functions in the future? There are no such things as reading rooms in the UK anymore - but these were the only place for public reading in 19C, serving as places for general discourse, learning and politcal debate. 100 years later we have libraries, and the rate of change is MUCH faster. Will there be libraries in another 20 years - if so what will they actually evolve into - it certainly won't be what we knew when we used them either at college, school or in the community ...
There will still be a need for traditional libraries in twenty years. Considering trends toward paid content, more restrictive copyright laws, and hihger fees for internet access, I think its safe to say that there will be tens of millions of people in this country who will not have the resources to fully participate in digital information.
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Old 10-09-2006, 04:45 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnaryry
Public libraries have a very different mission statement from academic libraries.

Public libraries serve the general public by providing materials and media desired by the communities they serve. The presence and availability of these materials in turn promotes and supports literacy within the community (another public library mission). Public libraries also serve as information portals.

Academic libraries are specialized and very narrow in their scope and focus. Their mission is to support research and to compile reference knowledge base for academic sub-communities. Here the materials are selected far more cafefully and critically. The academic library is a workplace, not just for its staff, but also for its users and patrons.

--ryan
I think everyone missed my point. Serving the general public also means serving special interests. Like I mentioned before, I really don't want to go into the whole why and how so I'll leave it at that. And yes, before someone says it, perhaps I should have kept quiet if I didn't feel like explaining everything :-p.
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Old 10-11-2006, 08:12 AM   #23
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There probably is a difference between college and public libraries, from my hazy memory of college (in those days Universities were seen as a fountain of knowledge ... where students went to drink :-) the library was a great place to meet when skipping lectures or a meeting point before going out ... but then I should have maybe been more studious :-)

An interesting point that library useage is going up ... but mainly through non-traditional uses. I'm sure there will be librabries for some time to come .. but will they always have bricks around them?
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Old 10-11-2006, 06:14 PM   #24
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I'd say 'yes' to the need for public libraries, at least for a generation or two.

Use of my local libraries is up because of the web, as I mentioned in a previous post, but that means that while folks are searching for books, requesting books, and renewing books online, those *books* are still the physical books that are picked up and dropped off at brick and mortar libraries.

Anytime I want to know more about something I've read (heard) about online, I see if there's information in the local library and check it out if so. Physical books, anyway.

Frankly, the few times I've "checked out" an ebook from the library, I've ended up frustrated and haven't finished the book. Though I read ebooks all the time (and have for years), the ones through the library are so crippled with DRM and restricted readers, that they are more trouble than they're worth.

(For those who haven't 'checked out' an ebook, it's all done online, at least in my area, and they can only be read on a computer, not downloaded to a reading device (in my case, a Palm). I put 'checked out' in shudder quotes because there's never any 'out' about it.)

As to the 'trash' aspect of public libraries... all I can say is that I'm very glad no one has the right to restrict what I want to check out of a public library just because someone believes I shouldn't want to read it.

And some academic libraries *are* public in the sense that they are supported by taxes, though their mandate is different.

Gotta say thanks to good ole Ben.
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Old 10-13-2006, 09:25 AM   #25
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p-books
Sorry Bob ! liquids and paper are a bad mix
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Old 10-13-2006, 09:57 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by yvanleterrible
Sorry Bob ! liquids and paper are a bad mix
I'll never look at the "p-book" abbreviation the same again!
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Old 10-13-2006, 12:50 PM   #27
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ARRRRGH! You just had to go there, didn't you, yvanleterrible? Now you've ruined it for everyone!


It's all fun and games until someone plants an indellible image of horror in everyone else's mind.
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Old 10-13-2006, 03:15 PM   #28
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Hey! Holloween's right around the corner!

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Old 10-13-2006, 03:20 PM   #29
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It hasn't been the same around here without you, yvanleterrible.
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