Theory

Welcome to the Knowledge Revolution

Peter Drucker has an interesting story, Beyond The Information Revolution the appeared in The Atlantic awhile back.

The steam engine was to the Industrial Revolution as the Computer is to the “Information revolution” (if you’ve ever read Stoll you know why I put that in quotes, I\'m still not entirely sold on the knowledge revolution idea). Both the computer and the steam engine were not just the triggers, but as he puts it “above all, it’s symbol”. Now, just as then, products caught up in this revolution are seeing dramatic price decreases (Moores law being just one example). Now computers prices drop each year, then it was clothing, paper, and metal.

What he points out that is so interesting has to do with the amount of time that elapsed before the industrial revolution began to break out of it’s 19th century thinking. During the first 50 years of the revolution people had only managed to mechanize stuff that had been around, they just made more of it, and it cost less.

Just as the railroad worked to shrink “mental geography”, the internet eliminates it. We can now buys books from Amazon in Seattle, or catalogs from isim in Sweden, they both get delivered in the same way. Now we only have one economy, and one market, barriers have fallen world wide.

He calls this the Knowledge revolution because the key to our current revolution lies not in the computers themselves, but in cognitive science, that is in our minds, in the minds of the people leading this revolution.

Topic: 

Library Juice Manifesto

I\'ve given Library
Juice
something it should have had years ago: a manifesto.
Actually it\'s an adaptation of the statement I gave New Breed
Librarian
when they interviewed me for their inaugural
issue. It expresses what I think are a large number of
librarians motivations for being librarians and expresses
what is known as the \"library spirit\" from a certain
angle. It is titled \"The Ideology of Librarianship: A
Libertarian Socialism of Information,\" and it is inside,
here:

Topic: 

Human Markup Language

OASIS, the XML interoperability consortium, has founded a committee to develop methods for describing human characteristics through XML:

The OASIS HumanMarkup Technical Committee (TC) will work to develop Human Markup Language (HumanML), a schema for embedding contextual human characteristics -- cultural, social, kinesic (body language), psychological and intentional features -- within information. OASIS said HumanML would have applications in artificial intelligence, virtual reality, conflict resolution, psychotherapy, art, workflow, advertising, cultural dialogue, agent systems, diplomacy and business negotiation. . .

More from Internet News . Thanks to Slashdot.

Topic: 

How and Why Are Libraries Changing?

Denise A. Troll, Distinguished Fellow at the Digital Library Federation has a draft of How and Why Are Libraries Changing? posted.

\"The purpose of this paper is to initiate discussion among a small group of university and college library directors being convened by the Digital Library Federation (DLF) and the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) to explore how and why libraries and library use are changing. This exploration is envisioned as the first step in a larger initiative that includes conducting research and presenting the research results to library directors, their provosts, presidents and faculty.\"

Sometimes I think Cam wants to be a librarian.

Topic: 

Growing pains for the Information Age

Brian Surratt writes \"The New York Times has an interesting article today about how scientists are (again) debating the nature of information. The article states that simple sets of information can create complex systems because of the way data relates to itself. For example, simple genomic information results in complex organisims. The article is Here but the NYT requires registration to access the site. \"

Topic: 

Mistakes and Failures at the Desk

Don Warner Saklad passed along Mistakes and Failures at the Reference Desk By Lydia Olszak
This study, based on data collected through observation and structured interviews, explores the incidence of mistakes and failures by reference staff in an academic library. Three main questions are addressed: (1) what actions or behaviors constitute a mistake or failure? (2) what techniques are used by reference staff to alert each other of mistakes? and (3) do mistakes at the reference desk conform with the typology developed by Bosk in his study of medical mistakes? Results suggest that reference librarians must deal with competing goals and that providing a correct answer may not be the most important goal for every transaction.

Topic: 

A Reluctant Father of the Digital Age

MIT\'s Technology Review profiles the pioneering information theorist Claude Shannon:

The entire science of information theory grew out of one electrifying paper that Shannon published in 1948, when he was a 32-year-old researcher at Bell Laboratories. Shannon showed how the once-vague notion of information could be defined and quantified with absolute precision. He demonstrated the essential unity of all information media, pointing out that text, telephone signals, radio waves, pictures, film and every other mode of communication could be encoded in the universal language of binary digits, or bits—a term that his article was the first to use in print. Shannon laid forth the idea that once information became digital, it could be transmitted without error. This was a breathtaking conceptual leap that led directly to such familiar and robust objects as CDs. Shannon had written \"a blueprint for the digital age,\" says MIT information theorist Robert Gallager, who is still awed by the 1948 paper.

A statue of Claude Shannon was erected in his hometown of Gaylord, Michigan on October 6, 2000.

Topic: 

Hate Reading Books? It\'s in the Genes

Hoser Yahoo was one place with a story on This Study that isn\'t exactly library related, but I can\'t resist.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology ran a study called \"The Heritability of Attitudes: A Study of Twins\". They studied the genetic basis of individual differences in attitudes in twins. The study found that genetic factors accounted for 35 percent of the variation in attitudes, while environmental factors accounted for 65 percent.
And, yes, this included reading.

Topic: 

Why does feminism matter in LIS Studies?

Found This Interesting paper by Kirsten Anderson on why feminism does matter in Library and Information Studies.

Some of her points include, Feminism is for everybody, The status of women and the status of librarianship, Female intensive, but not female dominant and Gender division of labour.

Check it Out.

Topic: 

Higher Access Rates Good For Libraries?

AOL announced that it is raising its monthly fee to $23.90, its first price hike in more than three years, and This News.com story says that competitors such as EarthLink won\'t be far behind in trying to boost rates.I\'ve seen elsewhere that DSL and Cable Modem companies are raising rates as well.

According to a recent survey by Telecommunications Reports International, the number of U.S. homes with Internet access dropped slightly during the first quarter of 200 (Let\'s just ass-u-me it\'s accurate).

So... Does all this point to more people using their friendly neighborhood library to access the internet, and if so, is this even good for libraries?

Topic: 

Pages

Subscribe to Theory