Friday, December 10, 2010

The future (of libraries, of library services)

OK, so we had videos (Betamax then VHS), and then moved to DVDs. What will be the next technology? "Streaming" is what I had been told. Certainly that is the way folks like Netflix and Hulu are moving. This may be a way for libraries to deal with the "streaming" issue, or may be an interim step. I am not sure which. Flix on Stix

Mita Williams (New Jack Librarian) from Canada has a long and thoughtful post about the future of libraries. She called it The future of libraries is what we create in the present. She closes with the following, pithy statements:
When I talk about the future I really mean this afternoon.
When I talk about the present I really mean this morning.
Eric Hellman has a post called Lots of Markets, Lots of Business Models. In it he talks about the structure of the book publishing industry and starts off with this interesting analogy:

The book industry is a lot like the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union consisted of fifteen ethnically divergent states (soviets) stitched together by a highly centralized government model. When that government model weakened, it turned out that there was little holding the soviets together. The Soviet Union no longer exists.
He goes on from there to talk about the shift in book publishing from print to digital and compares the book industry with the music and film industries. It offers some interesting thoughts.

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