Yeeee-HAAA: Texas will be home to first all-digital library system

digtexasTexas’ Bexar County Library system is getting rid of its printed books to become the world’s first all-digital library system.  Here’s the article in PCWorld, which places the decision in context.   Despite being himself an unabashed book lover, the driving force behind this transformation, county judge Nelson Wolff apparently had a flash of inspiration while reading the biography of Steve Jobs (was he reading it on an electronic device that somehow delivered an unexpected jolt?).  The news set off a flurry of conversations in the library community where, on a library listserve to which I belong, someone linked to a Thomas Friedman editorial in the New York Times about the radical changes the digital revolution 2.0 (or is it 3.0 now?) have wrought and what it all means for society and the economy.  Yet as this article helpfully points out, according to a Pew Internet and American Life Project most U.S. readers still prefer old-timey books.  Whatever the case, I hope that instead of emulating the Apple store, the libraries of the future will keep some bookshelves around as, if nothing else comforting, sound-deadening, cloister-creating décor.

-Ed Scripsi



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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Why can’t I skip the whole reading thing & just have the memory of the book flashed into my brain?
    Was reading in a business newsletter (Kiplinger) that they expect to see school textbooks phased off of paper by 2018.

  2. Some colleges have already done such. Students get a reading device and all textbooks are loaded onto it; same for much of the library’s lending material.

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