Business Insider's Chris Weller asked me to draw from our work at Institute for the Future, where I'm a research director, to take a long-distance look at the far future of what libraries could become:
In 50 years' time, Pescovitz tells Business Insider, libraries are poised to become all-in-one spaces for learning, consuming, sharing, creating, and experiencing — to the extent that enormous banks of data will allow people to "check out" brand-new realities, whether that's scaling Mt. Everest or living out an afternoon as a dog....
The definition of a library is already changing.
Some libraries have 3D printers and other cutting-edge tools that makes them not just places of learning, but creation. "I think the library as a place of access to materials, physical and virtual, becomes increasingly important," Pescovitz says. People will come to see libraries as places to create the future, not just learn about the present.
Pescovitz offers the example of genetic engineering, carried out through "an open-source library of genetic parts that can be recombined in various way to make new organisms that don't exist in nature."
"Libraries of the future are going to change in some unexpected ways" (Business Insider)
(image: "The Long Room of the Old Library at Trinity College Dublin")
For years, the Internet Archive has been acquiring books (their goal is every book ever published) and warehousing them and scanning them. Now, these books are being "woven into Wikipedia" with a new tool that automatically links every Wikipedia citation to a print source to the exact page and passage from the book itself, which […]
Radical librarian (and warrant canary inventor) Jessamyn West (previously gave this year's Alice G Smith lecture at the University of South Florida's School of Information. It's called "Social Justice is a Library Issue; Libraries are a Social Justice Issue."
The Internet Archive's Open Library scans books that they have physical copies of, then lends the resulting ebooks to its patrons, building on the precedent set in 2014's Hathi Trust ruling.
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