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"every child can stretch a hand across a keyboard and reach every book ever written, every painting ever painted, every symphony ever composed." -- Bill Clinton's State of the Union message, January 1998.
Similarly: H. G. Wells, World Brain, "There is no practical obstacle whatever now to the creation of an efficient index to all human knowledge, ideas and achievements, to the creation, that is, of a complete planetary memory for all mankind."
"If the human race has produced since the invention of movable type a total record, in the form of magazines, newspapers, books, tracts, advertising blurbs, correspondence, having a volume corresponding to a billion books, the whole affair, assembled and compressed, could be lugged off in a moving van." -- Vannevar Bush, As We May Think.
Some think online reading is bad.
COMMENTARY Google and God's Mind
The problem is, information isn't knowledge.
"The nub of the matter lies in the distinction between information (data, facts, images, quotes and brief texts that can be used out of context) and recorded knowledge (the cumulative exposition found in scholarly and literary texts and in popular nonfiction).
When it comes to information, a snippet from Page 142 might be useful. When it comes to recorded knowledge, a snippet from Page 142 must be understood in the light of pages 1 through 141 or the text was not worth writing and publishing in the first place."
From the Los Angeles Times.... (December 17, 2004)
Shneiderman & Marchionini 1988
"Today's electronic retrieval systems . . . focus on coding, indexing, and cross-referencing (organization for retrieval) rather than on meaning, readability, and assimilation (organization for understanding)."
Shneiderman has always argued for context, for systems that help people understand where they are in a task.
Large collections are coming (whether they will help quality is doubtful, but they will contain a lot of new information).
We need an interface oriented towards large books.
We still haven't explored the selection of materials in context.
We also need ways of judging bias, genre, . . .
And mostly we need to measure utility.
- Reagle Jr., Joseph Michael (2010). Good Faith Collaboration: The Culture of Wikipedia. MIT Press. [^]
- Buckland, Michael (2009). "As We May Recall: Four Forgotten Pioneers," Interactions, vol. 16, No. 6 (November + December 2009), pp. 76-79. [^]
- Rayward, W. Boyd, ed. (2008). European Modernism and the Information Society: Informing the Present, Understanding the Past. Ashgate Publishing. [^]
- Wallace, Danny P. (2007). Knowledge Management: Historical and Cross-Disciplinary Themes. Libraries Unlimited. [^]
- Buckland, Michael (2006). "Collaboration: Bad Words and Strong Documents," (p. 3) In: Hassanaly, Parina, et al., eds. (2006). Proceeding of the 2006 Conference on Cooperative Systems Design: Seamless Integration of Artifacts and Conversations -- Enhanced Concepts of Infrastructure for Communication. Amsterdam, The Netherlands: IOS Press. [^]
- Lesk, Michael (2005). Digital Searching to Digital Reading. Presentation at LITA session at American Library Association conference, Chicago, 2005. [^]
- Gorman, Michael (2004). "Google and God's Mind: The problem is, information isn't knowledge." (Commentary) Los Angeles Times, December 17, 2004. [^]
- Rees, Martin (2003). Our Final Hour: A Scientist's Warning: How Terror, Error, and Environmental Disaster Threaten Humankind's Future in This Century -- On Earth and Beyond. Basic Books. [^]
- Literature/2002/Rossman [^]
- Literature/2001/Wales [^]
- Literature/2000/Wales [^]
- Gillies, James & Robert Cailliau (2000). How the Web was Born: The Story of the World Wide Web. Oxford University Press. [^]
- Literature/1999/Berners-Lee [^]
- Literature/1999/Stallman [^]
- Campbell-Kelly, Martin & William Aspray (1996). Computer: A History of the Information Machine. Basic Books. [^]