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Science & Technology

Apr 19 2016

Monkey Town, U.S.A.

by Hope L

Smiths

While reading the latest issue of my favorite DCPL mag, Smithsonian, I learned that one can still visit Monkey Town, U.S.A. ( actually Dayton, Tennessee), where they celebrate annually one of the most controversial trials in our nation’s history.

“Pretty much every summer since 1988, this tiny Appalachian town (pop. 7,200) has roused itself to celebrate that publicity stunt gone viral.  The Scopes Trial Festival, held over two weekends in July, features live bluegrass, tractor and craft shows, and a fried-Oreo food truck.  A storyteller spins his tales like a barker at a sideshow.  The centerpiece of the festival is a town-commissioned musical, Front Page News, which re-enacts the trial in the vast courtroom where it was held.

The play, performed by members of the nearby Cumberland County Playhouse, is essentially a rebuttal to Inherit the Wind ( both the DVD of the film starring Spencer Tracy and the book by the same name are available at DCPL).  The Hollywood version of the trial is widely loathed in Dayton, and the Front Page News does hew much more closely to the court transcript.”

Both the book and the DVD are available at DCPL.

 

inherit

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Aug 18 2015

What is Code?

by Jesse M

It is sometimes said that in this digital age we now live in, programming is the new literacy. The ubiquitous nature of software products in our modern life means that even if we don’t realize it, code is all around us, running on our smartphones, handling our banking transactions, and helping to circulate library materials! As software has gradually woven its way into our day-to-day lives, we’ve become increasingly dependent on the services it makes available, which also makes us dependent on the programmers who wrote the code–and who occasionally must step back into the picture to fix any problems that arise.

Back in June, Paul Ford wrote an excellent article titled What is Code? which does an in-depth and thorough job of examining what code is and how it affects our lives. It bounces back and forth between an examination of some of the most popular and/or seminal programming languages to how IT departments operate in the corporate world. It is a multimedia document with a lot of fun and interactive examples and conceptual demonstrations–and is easily the best and most comprehensive depiction of the subject I’ve ever encountered.

If you’re interested in learning more about some of the programming languages discussed in the article, you can check out one of the many related books that DCPL has to offer.

Coding for dummies cover

Coding for Dummies

Beginning Programming with C for Dummies

MySQL Cookbook [ebook]

Sams Teach Yourself Java in 24 Hours

Mastering Perl

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Jul 17 2015

Greener than Envy

by Rebekah B

tiny-grassThe science investigating consciousness and intelligence in plants is a fascinating and rapidly developing field of study. The thinking that all intelligent life forms require a brain and “standard” nervous system is in the process of possibly being debunked. Vegans, beware: Cruelty-free living may, alas, be impossible! However, increasing awareness of all life forms does allow us to make better choices, gives us all an opportunity to be grateful, and to realize that to be alive is to cause some degree of harm to other beings. I do love plants very much, and I feel a great affinity with them. As an amateur gardener, I am frequently impressed by the survival strategies of plants, and how they sometimes compete with one another, and sometimes cooperate…not unlike us humans!

Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma and The Botany of Desire, among other titles, published a highly informative article on the subject describing recent developments in plant science in the The New Yorker on December 23, 2013, called The Intelligent Plant.” I have read portions of The Secret Life of Plants, mentioned in the opening remarks of Mr. Pollan’s article. Like him, I was deeply intrigued by the experiments with plants and polygraphs conducted by former CIA polygraph expert Cleve Backster, involving events from distances of several hundred miles, in which plants were recorded registering a variety of responses to various thoughts and stimuli. Pollan pursues that the 1973 title compiled a “beguiling mashup of legitimate plant science, quack experiments, and mystical nature worship that captured the public imagination at a time when New Age thinking was seeping into the mainstream.” Here is a quote from the article:

“Backster and his collaborators went on to hook up polygraph machines to dozens of plants, including lettuces, onions, oranges, and bananas. He claimed that plants reacted to the thoughts (good or ill) of humans in close proximity and, in the case of humans familiar to them, over a great distance. In one experiment designed to test plant memory, Backster found that a plant that had witnessed the murder (by stomping) of another plant could pick out the killer from a lineup of six suspects, registering a surge of electrical activity when the murderer was brought before it. Backster’s plants also displayed a strong aversion to interspecies violence. Some had a stressful response when an egg was cracked in their presence, or when live shrimp were dropped into boiling water, an experiment that Backster wrote up for the International Journal of Parapsychology, in 1968.”

macleans35_plants02

While The Secret Life of Plants intrigued a generation or more of minds and hearts willing to change the standard view of plants being immobile, senseless vegetable matter, Pollan claims that the romanticism of the book may have damaged the reception of more recent ventures by plant scientists to more thoroughly explore the cognitive abilities of plants through controlled experiments that can be replicated. Some scientists go even further, claiming self-censorship, fearing that serious scientific studies of plant cognition will be poorly received. Nonetheless, there are scientists who label themselves “plant neurobiologists” who are working to radically transform our perceptions of our chlorophyll-laden friends. Here is another quote from The Intelligent Plant,” where Pollan speaks of a 2006 article from the journal Trends in Plant Science:

The six authors—among them Eric D. Brenner, an American plant molecular biologist; Stefano Mancuso, an Italian plant physiologist; František Baluška, a Slovak cell biologist; and Elizabeth Van Volkenburgh, an American plant biologist—argued that the sophisticated behaviors observed in plants cannot at present be completely explained by familiar genetic and biochemical mechanisms. Plants are able to sense and optimally respond to so many environmental variables—light, water, gravity, temperature, soil structure, nutrients, toxins, microbes, herbivores, chemical signals from other plants—that there may exist some brainlike information-processing system to integrate the data and coördinate a plant’s behavioral response. The authors pointed out that electrical and chemical signalling systems have been identified in plants which are homologous to those found in the nervous systems of animals. They also noted that neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, and glutamate have been found in plants, though their role remains unclear.”

Professor Mancuso

Michael Pollan actually traveled to Florence, Italy, to meet Stefano Mancuso (photo right), who passionately pursues and defends the concept that having a vertebrate-type nervous system and being mobile are not necessary requirements for intelligence. He further explains that because plants are basically stuck where they are and are frequently consumed, their “modular” structures allow them to lose up to 90% of their bodily structures without dying. Because plants are literally rooted to the ground, their survival depends upon their ability to be highly aware of their surroundings and to use various modes of perception to defend and perpetuate themselves. Some scientists claim that plants have as many as 15 to 20 senses to our five, or six, if you believe in intuition. The following is also from Pollan’s New Yorker article:

Plants have evolved between fifteen and twenty distinct senses, including analogues of our five: smell and taste (they sense and respond to chemicals in the air or on their bodies); sight (they react differently to various wavelengths of light as well as to shadow); touch (a vine or a root ‘knows’ when it encounters a solid object); and, it has been discovered, sound. In a recent experiment, Heidi Appel, a chemical ecologist at the University of Missouri, found that, when she played a recording of a caterpillar chomping a leaf for a plant that hadn’t been touched, the sound primed the plant’s genetic machinery to produce defense chemicals. Another experiment, done in Mancuso’s lab and not yet published, found that plant roots would seek out a buried pipe through which water was flowing even if the exterior of the pipe was dry, which suggested that plants somehow ‘hear’ the sound of flowing water.”

If anything, reading The New Yorker article will renew your sense of wonder and respect for the mostly-silent, green beings around us. By some estimates, plants make up over 99% of the Earth’s biomass. Let’s hope they are not plotting to use their smarts to replace the insignificant 1%, of which we are only a small part!

An additional book about plant intelligence and other interesting plant facts in the DCPL system:

The Secret Language of Life: How Animals and Plants Feel and Communicate by Brian J. Ford, 2000

Interesting links:

Press releases from the International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology

The New Scientist: Smarty Plants (PDF document)

Public Radio International article: New Research on Plant Intelligence May Forever Change How You Think About Plants

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May 8 2015

We’ve Come a Long Way, Baby

by Camille B

A few nights ago, a patron came to the library to pick up her holds. She was quite pleased when she came to the desk to check out, simply because everything had come in quickly and all at the same time. She thanked us for our service and walked away smiling. After she’d gone, I pondered to myself, hmm, how did people place items on hold in the old days? I mean you have a small town, where everybody knows everybody else, and there is no internet access for you to use and request items–how did it work?

And so I imagine Gladys. She goes to the library to search for a copy of Wuthering Heights and it’s not there. “Sorry, Gladys,” says the librarian, “Dorothy just borrowed that book yesterday, and it won’t be back for another three weeks. I’ll write your name down on our list, and make sure you are next in line to get the book.”

I smile to myself as I try to envision what that scenario would look like today if we had to write “Gladys” on a piece of paper and give her a call when her book finally comes in. Or better yet, send someone over to knock on her door. Maybe it’s just me, but it will never cease to amaze me the things we can accomplish with technology today–the many steps we can skip with just the push of a button or tap of an app–progress that many of our parents and grandparents only dreamed of.

No longer do we have to swallow our disappointment when the book we want is not on the shelf, or become so bored when we run out of reading material that we begin reading the words off of the cereal box. The avenues for having books at our fingertips are now endless as opposed to how it was for Gladys. Not only is it easy to put books on hold at the library, technology has now afforded us the luxury of sitting in the comfort of our homes, downloading audiobooks, eBooks and eMagazines onto electronic devices for our reading and listening  pleasure. Smartphones, computers, eReaders and tablets have now expedited the reading process.

For those of you reading this and thinking to yourselves, “Well, I’m just not that tech savvy.” Or you figure that surely, you must be brilliant to get the hang of any of this–that’s simply not true. It’s really not as daunting as you think, and there are so many great library resources that can guide you along the way to becoming better equipped at navigating your way in the eWorld.

Maybe you’re a grandparent and received your very first tablet from your grandkids last year. You didn’t have the heart to tell them you’re clueless and quite frankly intimidated by the device. So instead, you smiled, thanked them for it, and it’s now sitting in the back of your cabinet with the other knick-knacks, hidden behind the china cow.

Your sense of dread isn’t necessary. At DCPL we can help you find what you need along the way while you learn at your own pace, and you can even Book a Librarian if you figure you’d get a better start in a one-on-one setting.

All and in all there are some days, too many in fact, when I take a lot of our modern services and technology for granted because they’ve now become so much a part of our everyday lives. But the truth is, I still think they’re pretty awesome–and I’d like to think that this is how our patron felt the night she came in to pick up her holds, simply grateful.

And you know what? If Gladys were here today, I bet that she too would be beside herself with joy.

android phones and tablets

See what’s available to download now:

Overdrive at DCPL provides eBooks and downloadable audiobooks.

DCPL’s Zinio collection has full color digital copies of magazines.

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Apr 3 2015

Are you a Robot?

by Dea Anne M

So I was engaged in a marathon laundry session over the weekend and, while dialing through the cycles, I was struck for the first time by the cycle listed as “normal.” Now I know perfectly well that this is supposed to mean something like “the laundry in this demands no special requirements,” but the part of my brain that regularly engages in the “What if?” game kicked in at that very moment. What if–I wondered–my washing machine was actually telling me about its mood or state of being? “Oh. Thanks for asking. I feel pretty normal today…you know… nothing new.” Then I started to imagine a different array of washer cycles and the ways that these personalities (so to speak) would express themselves. Here’s a sample:

Blasé cycle – “Hot water? Cold water? It doesn’t matter to me. I mean, like, whatever. It’s just clothes right?”

Anxious cycle – “Am I getting these clothes clean enough? Really? How can you tell? They aren’t getting clean enough and I’m going to get fired! My boss is going to show up any minute and fire me! Oh gosh, I’ve got to calm down. Maybe this bag of Oreos will help. Wait a minute…did I unplug the iron?”

Entitled Adult Brat cycle – “Excuse me? You want me to do what? That can’t possibly be in the job description. I mean, I graduated Brown.  With honors! What? You’re replacing me? Just wait till I call my lawyer! Also, my parents.”

Sullen Teen cycle – (indistinct mumbling) “What? (long sigh) I said what’s the big deal? You’re just going to wear the clothes again. (more sighing and indistinct mumbling) Can’t you just leave me alone?”

Angry Teen cycle – “You’re such a slave driver!  I have to do everything around here! Leave me alone!” (slams own door)

Of course, my washing machine can’t really communicate with me. Nor can any of my other appliances…thank goodness.FIRST And, despite the title of this post, when I bring up talking machines I’m not really talking about robots. According to Merriam-Webster, a robot is “a machine that can do the work of a person and that works automatically or is controlled by a computer.” So, strictly speaking, a robot would be something like the Roomba–the vacuuming sensation that spawned a plethora of YouTube videos featuring an animal (usually a cat) riding one. Of course some robots are quite a bit more intricate in design. If you’ve ever seen a robotics competition then you know how truly impressive some robots can be. Find out more about robots through DCPL by taking a look at FIRST Robots: Rack ‘N’ Roll: Behind the Design: 30 Profiles of Award-Winning Robot Designs by Vince Wilczynski and Stephanie Slezycki. Kids who are interested in robots will enjoy High Tech DIY Projects with Robotics by Maggie Murphy and How to Build a Prize-Winning Robot by Joel Chaffee.

blade runnerSometimes people use the words “robot” and “android” interchangeably, which is correct–although Webster’s does define an android as “a robot with a human appearance.” In literature and film, how closely an individual android resembles an actual human can vary. Thus, you have the “droids” C3-PO and R2-D2 in Star Wars IV, A New Hope, who are obviously not human, versus the “replicants” in Blade Runner who are nearly indistinguishable from the humans they attempt to pass among. Other films featuring robots or androids include:

Metropolis

The Day the Earth Stood Still

Alien and its sequel Aliens

Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Wall-E

Prometheus

Now we come to artificial intelligence, which Merriam-Webster defines as “an area of computer science that deals with giving machines the ability to seem like they have human intelligence” or “the power of a machine to copy intelligent human behavior.” Artificial intelligence takes a star turn most recently in the 2013 film from Spike Jonze, Her. Shy and lonely Theodore Twombly (played by Joaquin Phoenix) fall in love with a highly intelligent, talking operating system (voiced by Scarlett Johansson) named Samantha. Both Theodore and Samantha grow in the relationship–and although Samantha eventually leaves, her departure is loving. Implied at the end of the film is Theodore’s new reality–that the experience of loving Samantha has given him the ability to open his heart to other human beings.

Contrast t2001he lively and compassionate Samantha with HAL 9000, otherwise known as “Hal” to the crew of the ill-fated spaceship Discovery One in Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Who can forget the deadly certainty in Hal’s calm reply (voiced by Douglas Rain) to an increasingly desperate Dave Bowman’s (played by Kier Dullea) demand to “Open the pod bay doors, Hal.”? “I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.” HAL is responsible for several deaths in the film–and though one could argue that he acts through a sense of self-preservation, his ruthlessness is certainly chilling. Of course, Kubrick’s film is undeniably science fiction while Jonze’s is most emphatically not. (It’s a romantic comedy). Still, both films raise interesting questions regarding the influence that artificial intelligence can potentially have in the lives of human beings. If you’re interested in reading more about artificial intelligence, check out these offerings from DCPL:

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed by Ray Kurzweilmost human

Final Jeopardy: Man vs. Machine and the Quest to Know Everything by Stephen Baker

The Most Human Human: What Talking with Computers Teaches Us About What it Means to Be Alive by Brian Christian

What do you think about artificial intelligence and its possibilities? What would your appliances say to you if they could?

 

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Mar 9 2015

Survival 101

by Hope L

232In a couple of months I will be going on an Alaskan cruise. That’s the good news. The bad news is that we will have to fly to Vancouver, B.C., to begin the cruise. I’m excited, as this will be my first cruise. Alas, it will not be my first time flying.

When I was growing up my family traveled a lot, so flying was no big deal for me. And frankly, I did not think about how and why that huge thing we were in was up in the air.  But the older I get, the less I want to get on an airplane to go anywhere.  I should not have started reading about aircraft.

You see, some fifteen years ago, I made the mistake of reading about airline turbulence and what can happen when one is not wearing a seatbelt. This was around the time when airlines started asking passengers to keep their safety belts fastened even after the captain turned off the seatbelt sign. It was then that my OCD really started to kick in and I became obsessed with hurtling through the sky in a tube. (It shouldn’t surprise you that during this time I began to experience panic attacks.)

According to Aerospaceweb.org, a Boeing 777 has a typical cruise speed of about 560 mph (900 km/h) at an altitude of 35,000 ft. (10,675 m).  That’s over six miles up, folks.

Now, I know that it is common knowledge that flying is much safer than riding in an automobile (which on I-285 can be a real death wish), but still.

Recently, I read Flight 232: A Story of Disaster and Survival by Laurence Gonzales, and I have learned that yes, it IS possible to survive an airplane crash. So now, I shall choose to meditate on my “Brace, Brace, Brace” position (this is what the flight attendants called out to remind the passengers what to do just prior to when the plane landed -er- crashed in that Iowa cornfield in the summer of 1989).    Miraculously, 184 of 296 passengers and crew lived.

A miracle because:

“…the captain has told us that we have lost all our hydraulics.”  (According to a flight attendant informing another United pilot onboard.)

“He stared at her for a minute…. He knew that wasn’t possible. DC-10s must have hydraulics to fly them. Period.”

But the aircraft had lost its hydraulics.  And according to the pilot:

…The plane was traveling northeast at thirty-seven thousand feet. Just east of the Cherokee airport, the fan on the number two engine blew apart, cutting hydraulic lines and disabling flight controls.

“Having hydraulic fluid in the lines is a necessary condition of flight in a DC-10. After a complete loss of hydraulic power, the plane would have no steering. It would roll over and accelerate toward the earth, reaching speeds high enough to tear off the wings and tail before the fuselage plowed into the ground. Or it might enter into an uncontrollable flutter, falling like a leaf all the way to the earth, to pancake in and burst into flames.”

 

And yet the pilots of this aircraft managed to steer and careen, in circles, and somehow lower the 185-ton behemoth. You can see the wild flight in the diagram below.

232path

Evidently, I’m not the only one obsessed. The author of this book has written other books about surviving, the following which are available at DCPL:

Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why–True Stories of Miraculous Endurance and Sudden Death

Everyday Survival: Why Smart People Do Stupid Things

Actually… I’ve just been thinking…wouldn’t the view be just gorgeous to Vancouver on Amtrak…or Greyhound?

 

 

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Feb 27 2015

Pi Anyone? This Year, It’s Epic!

by Rebekah B

keep_calm_its_pi_day_2015Hello readers,

I always look forward to March 14th, not because I am a math geek, but mostly because I love a good opportunity to be creative…and I also love a homemade pie!  Last year, I shared Pi Day with my coworkers at the Toco Hill branch, and I prepared a strawberry pie with a gluten-free almond crust, adapted from a recipe found in A Year of Pies.

This year’s Pi Day is especially remarkable because of this year’s date, making the first consecutive five digits of the mathematical constant Pi match the date of this holiday–which has been gaining in popularity in recent years. Adding to the excitement for the more precise (or more precisely nerdy) is the addition of the next five digits–or even six if you can bear it–by celebrating at 9:26:54 a.m. I found a wide array of t-shirts, mugs, and other celebratory Pi Day gear available online, advertising the once in a lifetime nature of this year’s event.

Larry Shaw

Pi Day was first inaugurated by physicist Larry Shaw, and the first recorded celebration was held at the Exploratorium–a science and discovery museum–in San Francisco in 1988, in which participants marched around the rounded space and consumed fruit pies.  Pi Day was later recognized by the House of Representatives on March 12, 2009, at which time a resolution for recognition of the event was passed (HRES 224).

pieday

The rituals involved in the observance of Pi Day vary by location, but include preparing or eating pies, throwing pies, and discussing the nature of Pi (the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter).  Many schools around the country hold contests to see which students are able to remember the largest number of consecutive digits of the commemorated constant.

MIT applicants receive decision letters that have been posted online on Pi Day at 6:28 p.m. to pay tribute to both Pi and Tau. (Pi is half of Tau.) In fact, Tau supporters are looking forward to celebrating Tau Day on June 28, 2031.  In Princeton, New Jersey, the Pi Day celebration coincides with Albert Einstein’s birthday.  Einstein lived and worked in Princeton for over 20 years, and the town adds Einstein Look-Alike contests to the traditional Pi Day rites.

Here are some books in the DCPL collection that will encourage you to celebrate and share some of the wondrous and uniquely comforting PIes in your life:

 

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Oct 20 2014

PANIC!!!

by Hope L

tunn

Imagine you are venturing into a tunnel that’s been bored into the bedrock underneath the ocean and that continues straight out, hundreds of feet below the seafloor, for almost ten miles.  There is no light, besides the faint glow coming from the bulb on your helmet. There is no sound, besides the water dripping overhead or sloshing around your boots. Most important, there is no breathable air, besides what you brought in with you, a lifeline pumping through a hose and into your facemask. At the end of the tunnel, you don’t even have enough room to stand up straight, since it chokes down to just five feet in diameter before ending abruptly. It’s the world’s longest dead-end tunnel, so there’s no way out other than turning around and making the hazardous trek back to where you started.”–from the Prologue to Trapped Under the Sea by Neil Swidey

Once, about twenty years ago in Bisbee, Arizona, I had the opportunity to go on a small rail cart into a tunnel, which led to a mine located almost a mile inside a mountain.  Upon entering the tunnel, the tour guide warned that it was the last opportunity to get off the cart and back out for those who were squeamish about such things.  As the cart slowly entered the narrow shaft into the mountain, with barely enough room for our heads and shoulders, the adrenaline in my body surged and I started to panic.  I was moving deeper and deeper inside the mountain, with no quick way out!

I had never thought about it, frankly.  Not until that very dayTra.  And from then on, I realized that I was VERY uncomfortable in certain situations: airplanes thousands of feet in the air, caves miles under the ground, and yes, narrow tunnels carved into rock a mile into a mountain.  In the above-mentioned Bisbee mine shaft there were wooden beams standing vertically in places, literally holding the mountain over our heads.

So, as I read Trapped Under the Sea by Neil Swidey, a chronicle of the engineering complexities of a tunnel built underneath Boston Harbor and carrying waste from a state-of-the-art treatment plant ten miles out to sea, I felt lucky to not be there.  I mean, the professional divers and construction workers who completed this impossible endeavor were paid to do a job.  It’s not like they would receive a gold medal, a place in the Guinness World Book of Records, or even special recognition in a newspaper or technical journal–like the engineers who devised the thing on paper, in the safety of their well-lit office, with ample oxygen, and above ground.

The premise of the task at hand was ludicrous. In order to retrieve the huge plugs that fitted over the many side outlets to sea, a team of professional divers would drive a Humvee loaded with equipment and towing a Humvee facing the opposite direction (to come back out of the tunnel). They would drive almost ten miles in the tunnel constructed under the sea floor–and they would walk once the space became too narrow for the vehicle(s).

The impossible task was eventually accomplished, but not without the ultimate sacrifice paid by workers.

I shall try to remember this when my life gets tedious, annoying and/or boring, for I choose to experience any dangerous adventures vicariously through books, thank you very much. (See the book trailer here.)

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Jul 23 2014

Flying Around Book Ops

by Jesse M

Late last year I posted a video of drone pilot Nate Bolt flying through the New York Public Library with his Phantom Quadcopter. The drone’s-eye view provided an interesting and unique perspective and so when I learned he had released another video exploring the library through the eyes of his drone, I was excited to watch it! This time, Nate takes us through BookOps, the massive book sorting center in Queens, New York, that provides material for the 150 branches of the New York and Brooklyn Public Libraries. As stated in the video, the book sorting machine depicted is the second largest in the world, sorting 33,000 items a day on average.

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Jan 13 2014

The Library Without Books

by Hope L

I read in a recent issue of Time magazine (October 7, “Smoked Stacks”) that  “in 2002, Arizona’s Tucson-Pima Public Library system opened a branch without books, the first in the U.S. to attempt an all-digital existence.  But just a few years later, the library phased in printed materials.  Patrons demanded them.”

“I don’t think people could really envision a library without any books in it,” says Susan Husband, the Santa Rosa Branch manager.

My, how times have changed! San Antonio’s new Bexar County Digital Library is now touted as the nation’s only all-digital public library.

“The $2.4 million, 4,000-sq.-ft. space, also known as BiblioTech, opened September 14 and has been likened to an orange-hued Apple Store.  Stocked with 10,000 e-books, 500 e-readers, 48 computers and 20 iPads and laptops, the digital library includes a children’s area, community rooms and a Starbucksesque cafe to encourage collaboration among patrons in an inviting space.  And it will have zero print materials.”

Go ahead, call me old-fashioned—I just don’t  like the idea of a library without books.

According to the Time article, “The library is no longer the place where you walk in and the thing you pay the most attention to is the book collection,” says American Library Association President Maureen Sullivan. “It’s now a place where you’re immediately attuned to the variety of ways that people are making use of that space.”

Yikes!  Libraries with0ut books?  That’s like Superman without his cape,  a lemonade stand without anything to drink, a gym without weights, or politics without scandals.

It just won’t be the same. Luckily, DCPL still has both physical and non-physical books. If you’re after non-physical books, you can download some through the library’s free OverDrive eBooks and downloadable audiobooks service.

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