Seth Godin‘s blog post, The future of the library, although focused particularly on a future “public” library that perhaps doesn’t exist yet, is interesting to consider applied to the academic/university library of today:
A place where people come together to do co-working and coordinate and invent projects worth working on together. Aided by a librarian who understands the Mesh*, a librarian who can bring domain knowledge and people knowledge and access to information to bear.
Pretty good, right?
Unfortunately, academic libraries have not been able to achieve as quickly in our collections as we have with our physical spaces. His vision of collections as “finally abundant, hardly scarce, hardly expensive,” feels like the opposite of where we are in dealing with annually-inflating licensing costs for the highly specialized resources and databases required by our customers.
It really emphasizes for me again the importance of the new ways of preserving academic output, for example in institutional repositories like DigitalCommons@CalPoly and the need to support and encourage other methods of Open access publishing.