Stanford Ditching Books, Going Digital In Library

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News Posted: Tue, Jul 13 2010 11:19 AM
Well, this was inevitable. It's clear that paper books aren't what they used to be, and it's clear that they'll never be as important and useful as they once were. The information and knowledge within their pages are still just as vital as ever, but the digital age has led to easier ways to consume that very information. The advent of the Internet, and to an extent, e-readers and tablets, has enabled consumers to read and consume text without having to check out an actual book.


So, what happens to the biggest stockpiles of books? In the case of Stanford University's massive Engineering Library, most of the paper pages will be vanishing while the hard drives in the archive room will be filling up. Five years ago, the school realized that they were quickly running out of room on the shelves, with 80,000+ books taking up an insane amount of room. But instead of building more rooms, they chose to look at how often those books were being checked out. They found that "vast majority of the collection hadn't been taken off the shelf in five years."


Five years! People at the school expect that eventually no books will remain on the shelves, and a new library is set to open in August with just 10,000. Of course, all of the other information will be accessible in a digital form, and some of the librarians are quite excited. They'll soon be able to spend more time with people and less time organizing books, so we guess it's a win-win for everyone. 
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Kyouya replied on Tue, Jul 13 2010 2:24 PM

A lot of historians will not be happy with this idea..especially if they are thinking of destroying the books.

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Inspector replied on Tue, Jul 13 2010 6:24 PM

Who said anything about destroying the books? :D they are just vanishing, meaning from the school i guess and too others that need it but can't get it or a digital copy :D. by the way... whats the point of the library now then? it would be easier to check out the book from your room :)

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fat78 replied on Tue, Jul 13 2010 7:07 PM

if ereaders get cheaper many more people might start reading alot more. Might reduce the number of idiots who try to trade pot and a ipod for a ipad lol.

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Inspector replied on Tue, Jul 13 2010 7:50 PM

LOL fat, thats an awesome connection! :P

If only the ipad didn't cost so much as to trade pot for it... Hey hes only trying to get that ipad to learn...! :D

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acarzt replied on Tue, Jul 13 2010 11:22 PM

They will probably put the books in storage or donate them.

That would be cool if they lended out e-readers at the library as well.

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sackyhack replied on Wed, Jul 14 2010 11:55 AM

I don't know what's wrong with me, but I can never read books or any large block of text comfortably on a screen. Articles designed specifically for a website are fine, but something about the traditional paragraph format on a pc screen just makes my eyes wonder and loose focus, especially if it's scanned text. If my school wanted to do this with textbooks, they'd be losing thousands of sheets of paper due to me printing everything out.

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fat78 replied on Wed, Jul 14 2010 2:36 PM

you can listen to them on some ereaders if you cant stand reading it.

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Jul 14 2010 6:37 PM

That's an option.

I don't have anything to say. Sure the paper books are going to still exist and sure e-readers are going to be in the library but what else can I say except it's a step forward.

 

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acarzt replied on Wed, Jul 14 2010 6:46 PM

E-ink screens look surprisingly like real paper. I was pretty shocked lol

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