Table of contents(15 chapters)
As a new editor faced with a short deadline, it was gratifying to receive a large number of outstanding submissions in the past 6 months. This volume focuses on topics that push the edge in our increasingly electronically driven world. Not only is the field of library and information science awash in changes wrought by rapidly evolving technologies but so are almost all sectors that touch our daily lives. From e-banking to movies delivered through Wii and to smart phones with webcams and GPS applications, we face complexities that can paralyze us or make us embrace the digital environment. As our information environment becomes enriched, so do the challenges of keeping current as individuals and as librarians and information scientists. The most troublesome quandary is how we can learn from these early days of becoming digital to plan and accept changes in our work, our learning environments, and our personal and family lives. Just as industrialization changed the world a century ago, the digital explosion is causing another radical shift in our world.
Collaboration is often required for activities that are too complex or difficult to be dealt with by a single individual. Many situations requiring information-seeking activities also call for people to work together. Often the methods, systems, and tools that provide access to information assume that they are used only by individuals working on their tasks alone. This review points to the need to acknowledge the importance of collaboration in information-seeking processes, to study models, and to develop systems that are specifically designed to enable collaborative information seeking (CIS) tasks. This chapter reviews the literature from various domains including library and information science, human–computer interaction, collaborative systems, and information retrieval. Focus of the review is on the extent to which people work together on information seeking tasks and the systems and tools that are available for them to be successful. Since CIS occurs in the broader context of collaboration in general, a review of literature about collaborations is first undertaken to define it and place it into context with related terms such as cooperation and communication. A more focused review of research follows relating CIS to systems that have attempted to support such interactions. Included are identification and synthesis of a number of core issues in the field and how best to evaluate systems and collaborative tools. Key lessons learned from the review are summarized, and gaps in the literature identified to spur future research and study.
This chapter outlines how search engine technology can be used in online public access catalogs (OPACs) to help improve users’ experiences, to identify users’ intentions, and to indicate how it can be applied in the library context, along with how sophisticated ranking criteria can be applied to the online library catalog. A review of the literature and the current OPAC developments forms the basis of recommendations on how to improve OPACs. Findings were that the major shortcomings of current OPACs are that they are not sufficiently user-centered and that their results presentations lack sophistication. Furthermore, these shortcomings are not addressed in current 2.0 developments. It is argued that OPAC development should be made search-centered before additional features are applied. Although the recommendations on ranking functionality and the use of user intentions are only conceptual and not yet applied to a library catalogue, practitioners will find recommendations for developing better OPACs in this chapter. In short, readers will find a systematic view on how the search engines’ strengths can be applied to improving libraries’ online catalogs.
Learning-via-gaming is an emerging area of interest and research within kindergarten to grade 12 (k-12), in US schools. As a vital part of the k-12 instructional mission, school libraries are exploring the potential role of videogames in mediating information-oriented skills development. Although the general concept of learning-via-gaming is not new to school libraries (e.g., library review card games), empirical knowledge of videogames’ representational landscapes is needed to assist school librarians in developing instructional programming. This study examined representations of information across three distinct genres of mainstream videogames (shooters, action-adventure, and role-playing). Specifically, qualitative content analysis was used to examine the types of inscribed, information resources that players could use to generate solutions during problem-solving events. Across the three video gaming genres studied, there were seven strata of information: socially constructed, interpersonal, environmental, process, resource, task, and symbolic stratums. The results of this study could assist school librarians in (1) designing instructional lessons around videogames and/or (2) guiding students through the process of transporting meanings from the domain of gaming to other domains (e.g., academic, community, and everyday information problem-solving).
Education in library and information science (LIS) in the first decade of the 21st century is reviewed and discussed in terms of changes, developments, and associated issues. Specifically, courses and concentrations newly added to the LIS curriculum are described along with a summary of what has been revised, including the core. Distance education in LIS is presented as a result of technology application while reposition, relocation, and closures of LIS schools are also examined. Of the organizational changes among LIS schools, the emergence of iSchools and related topics received particular coverage with data gathered recently. Issues persistent in LIS education (i.e., accreditation of LIS programs, library education crisis, and chasm between LIS education and practices) are revisited with analysis. The author believes on the basis of this review that the digital age has brought us in LIS education with opportunities greater than ever. LIS education will move forward and even thrive in this digital age when the field not only makes intelligent use of the technology but also changes in other dimensions as the society advances.
This chapter presents results of a survey conducted over the summer of 2009 to 1485 libraries that serve populations of 25,000–100,000 in the United States about Internet connected public access computers and e-government. The methodology used was a mixed-methods questionnaire using 33 closed ended and three qualitative questions. The main finding was that public library staff do not have enough training in e-government and government documents to help patrons with their questions on these topics. Another aspect of the survey was to find out whether public libraries plan, fund, and allocate monies for computer hardware and software in their budgets.
The limitation of the research was the size of the libraries and the results can only be generalized to this group of libraries. There could be a bias by size of library and the way the questions were worded. The practical implications of the research indicate that future librarians in library and information science programs are unaware of the need to take either government information or e-government courses. Recent emerging roles for the public library includes being the freely available place to access e-government information in lieu of the actual federal, state, or local agencies.
Through a theoretical review of the literature, this chapter assesses the potential of different knowledge organisation systems (KOS) to support corporate knowledge management systems (KMS), namely digital libraries (DL) in companies and other institutions. Questions are framed through which the chapter discusses how classical KOS, such as nomenclatures, classification systems, thesauri and ontologies, are able to reflect explicit knowledge in sense of the Semantic Web and also introduces persons as documents along with folksonomies as a means for externalising implicit knowledge in sense of the Web 2.0.
In an era of unprecedented technological innovation and evolving user expectations and information seeking behaviour, we are arguably now an online society, with digital services increasingly common and increasingly preferred. As a trusted information provider, libraries are in an advantageous position to respond, but this requires integrated strategic and enterprise architecture planning, for information technology (IT) has evolved from a support role to a strategic role, providing the core management systems, communication networks and delivery channels of the modern library. Furthermore, IT components do not function in isolation from one another but are interdependent elements of distributed and multidimensional systems encompassing people, processes and technologies, which must consider social, economic, legal, organisational and ergonomic requirements and relationships, as well as being logically sound from a technical perspective. Strategic planning provides direction, while enterprise architecture strategically aligns and holistically integrates business and information system architectures. While challenging, such integrated planning should be regarded as an opportunity for the library to evolve as an enterprise in the digital age, or at minimum, to simply keep pace with societal change and alternative service providers. Without strategy, a library risks being directed by outside forces with independent motivations and inadequate understanding of its broader societal role. Without enterprise architecture, it risks technological disparity, redundancy and obsolescence. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, this conceptual chapter provides an integrated framework for strategic and architectural planning of digital library services. The concept of the library as an enterprise is also introduced.
This chapter discusses recent information policy activities and initiatives in the European Union (EU). EU information policy refers to the legislation and strategies pertaining to the creation of the European information society. It is concerned with economic and industrial competitiveness, with an emphasis on the role that information and communication technologies play in revolutionizing everyday life. This discussion focuses on the information policy areas of greatest interest to information professionals. It addresses the EU's struggles with the concept of transparency with regard to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, the application of privacy measures to the Internet of Things, and open-access to EU-funded research.