Library of Alexandria open again


National Geographic has a nice Story on The Library of Alexandria in Egypt. The Great Library was destroyed, 1,400 or more years ago and has now been rebuilt. This time it cost 180 million US Dollars. No word on how many papyrus scrolls they have to lend this time. The New version has \"he world\'s most advanced
cataloguing system, computerised book transport,
CD-roms, microfilms, internet connections and a fire
prevention system to ensure it doesn\'t suffer the same
fate as its predecessor. \"The new library\'s roof is a tilted disc, 160m in diameter,
dipping below ground level and said to symbolise the
rising sun. Its circular granite-clad wall is carved with
letters from almost every known alphabet. The vast
reading room, with 2,000 seats, rises through seven
terraces. There\'s just a small matter of something to fill
the shelves.

Though it is billed as \"a unique research institution, a
haven for scholars worldwide\", the library has scarcely
any money for books. Despite having the capacity to store
8m volumes, there will only be 400,000 when it opens. It\'s
a familiar problem - and one that the ancient Egyptians
solved ingeniously: according to legend, they raided
passing ships and forced them to hand over any scrolls on
board for copying.