Friday, April 01, 2005

Looks like the dream of the complete Index of the world's print collections is becomeing closer to reality. The Google Print Project has the lofty idea of compiling a complete source of print material, (Full text and abstracts, depending on copyright).

Rather like the dream of the Super-Library I entertained in my head while at University. I just hope that the digitising of this material is of good quality, but maybe thats me being cynical, pessimistic and picky. (Or maybe because I've just read Double Fold:Libraries and The Assult On Paper by Nicholas Baker, which deals with that problem relating to newspaper scanning and microfilming)

I'm in favour of this project from a distribution and access to information standpoint, but I would like there to remain print copies of all the processed material. it would be too easy for some librarian somewhere to solve their shelf space issues by discarding hard copies of material that has been made available as full text on Google Print. I might be old fashioned, but the complete discarding of material in this fashion grates with me.

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