Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Executive Director Charles B. Lowry skrev nyligen en artikel i Chronicle of Higher Education där han manade President Obama och kongressen att finansiera ett storskaligt projekt att digitalisera nationens bibliotek och kulturhistoriska samlingar.
Lowry skriver “Investing in an open, universal digital commons will help ease the current economic crisis by creating jobs, equipping workers with 21st-century skills, and laying a foundation for innovation and national competitiveness in business and research.”
Lowry skriver vidare “It is a shovel ready” public-works projects to heal the economy” “that phrase belies the reality of our infrastructure…. Roads and bridges are essential, of course, but we should also build our digital infrastructure and equip workers with skills they can use in the years ahead—skills for the information age.” ”Such a project would bring historical, scientific, and cultural materials to everyone with Internet access. “.
Ett viktigt ”But” identifieras av Lowry “a digital library for the new millennium should reach beyond books. Consider the value of giving every member of the public free access to course materials, including nonprint media, developed throughout the nation.” This project is “shovel ready.” With immediate funding, up to 10,000 people could quickly be trained and employed scanning public-domain library materials. Lowry estimates that creating a universal digital library of 10 million books would cost $300 million, a modest price tag compared with many public-works projects. ”
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