Stone tablets, paper and the Internet: the same old library?


Libraries have been serving users since antiquity but their purpose remains relatively unchanged – they serve the information needs of people. This chapter discusses how technology has enhanced the way libraries do what they have always done: but bigger, better and faster. Contemporary national trends of public, academic and school libraries in the US are summarized. The science of systems thinking is introduced and posited as a fundamental way in which to meet the basic information-seeking needs of people in a systematic way, and provide well-aligned resources and services that form the foundation of user services excellence.

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