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This work was originally commissioned during 1982, the year that was designated Information Technology Year; the year that the personal computer replaced the space invader machine as a focus for teenage obsession; the year of the library symbol, the Hunt Report on cable TV; the year the US Post Office issued two stamps celebrating American libraries, and the British Post Office issued a stamp for IT year suggesting that libraries were a thing of the past. The work was intended to look at “the background to the IT revolution, the benefits of applying technology to library services and the reasons for its relatively slow progress”. It was envisaged at the time that what would have been effectively a state‐of‐the‐art report on the technology available to libraries, and who was doing what with it, would be a useful tool for library managers introducing or extending library technical services. It might usefully have complemented the LA publication, The impact of new technology on libraries and information centres (LA, 1982). However, for a variety of reasons it was not possible to produce the publication in 1983 as intended; the person commissioned to write it was unable to do so; and eventually, in 1984, it was realised that the speed of development and availability of technology was such that any such work would be useless as a practical guide within months of publication. The growth, during the period, of journals on the subject of library applications of IT of all kinds; the appearance of regular updates in the generalist professional press; the formation of, for example, the Library Association IT Group: all these developments clearly offered better opportunities of current awareness to the library manager than could be achieved by a single monograph.
The librarian and researcher have to be able to uncover specific articles in their areas of interest. This Bibliography is designed to help. Volume IV, like Volume III…
The librarian and researcher have to be able to uncover specific articles in their areas of interest. This Bibliography is designed to help. Volume IV, like Volume III, contains features to help the reader to retrieve relevant literature from MCB University Press' considerable output. Each entry within has been indexed according to author(s) and the Fifth Edition of the SCIMP/SCAMP Thesaurus. The latter thus provides a full subject index to facilitate rapid retrieval. Each article or book is assigned its own unique number and this is used in both the subject and author index. This Volume indexes 29 journals indicating the depth, coverage and expansion of MCB's portfolio.
The MCB University Press appears to be regularly republishing the periodical Library Management as separates and, though they are excellently printed on good paper, they are costly at the price. This particular number is important to the future of libraries in the UK because it considers the whole question, in its widest aspects, of the potential effect of the information technology revolution on those libraries. The work was commissioned in 1982, Information Technology Year, but for a variety of reasons could not be produced at once a fact which is being regarded as a reason for congratulation because it has allowed consideration of recent and rapid developments. As it now stands this report forms a good up‐to‐date outline of many features of the topic, the benefits of application of IT to library services and resulting managerial problems, the response made by the profession to the challenge, the new national information policy, and the vexed question of open access to information without charge. The final controversial conclusion is that the profession has failed to plan for change and that the issues have already passed beyond its control.