Books and Libraries in the Digital Age

“Books and Libraries in the Digital Age” , hosted by the MIT Communications Forum on Oct 16, 2008.

A  fascinating  discussion about the relationship between emerging technologies, primary source research, and libraries. (Run time, 1:54 minutes, takes a while to get to the meat of the topic). Posted online via MIT World™, a free and open site that provides on demand video of significant public events at MIT.

“Perhaps because he is a historian rather than librarian by training, Robert Darnton regards the vast ocean of digital information that civilization has begun accumulating with relish rather than anxiety. Darnton delves into European archives to find raw material, boxes of cast-off “ephemera,” for his stories of how people lived hundreds of years ago. No wonder he believes “it’s important to preserve as much as you can because you don’t know what will turn out to be significant.”

In conversation with David Thorburn and audience members, Darnton lays out why he finds more promise than peril in rapidly expanding digital collections.”

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