Sunday, December 31, 2006

Catalogs, databases, and searching ... Oh My!

This post will be quick ...

A quick search of your favorite search engine or research database will tell you that there's been a lot written about how library catalogs and library databases should work, i.e., how they should search, display results, and give the searcher functionality that enables him/her to create something of value from the results ... many libraries have developed new systems or partnered with vendors to do so, and I think that's pretty cool ...

But when I think of really breaking through the information ceiling of our mass-market, globalized world, and making the resources of libraries a part of the mix, I think it will mean that we flatten out (not dilute) those resources to be findable through channels that real people are using ... Google, Amazon, Yahoo, Ask, Barnes & Noble, etc., ... whatever tool makes a person feel comfortable.

Dr. Michio Kaku, a physicist from City University of New York, talks quite a bit about the importance of simplicity ... I suppose that libraries and locating information through libraries should be viewed no differently ... simple is better ... and often, familiarity breeds simplicity ...



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