Guest Lecture DU LIS 4050

Library Technologies Past, Present, & Tomorrow

World Wide Web

With the explosive growth of World Wide Web starting in the 1990s, library systems struggled to keep up.

While the term "World Wide Web" seems somewhat archaic in the worlds of the monstrous corporate technologies giants as Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, all grew at their tremendous pace very much enabled by the Internet and the growth of websites and web technology.

Google and Amazon

More than any other company, Google's search service looms over the design and expectations users have for their library systems, including catalogs and scholarly databases. At first, the reactions of librarians and technology vendors was to dismiss Google while using Google themselves for their own research.

As users become accustomed to the quirks and results of Google's user interface, some publishers of electronic resources are modifying their own search interfaces to mimic Google. Other publishers and library system vendors are taking other approaches by trying to differentiate their own user interfaces and algorithms which provides other challenges, especially those librarians and teachers instructing students on information literacy for high school and undergraduate education.

While Amazon's main site is not known of it's search, Amazon's product display, in particular for printed and ebooks, has been an important source of inspiration and duplication by most library "discovery" products. Amazon popularized the prominent display of the Book Cover along with filters (or facets) for narrowing search results.

Facebook and Twitter Social Networks

While the impacts on library systems by most-popular social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter have not had the impact as Google or Amazon, their have been some attempts to adding "sharing" capabilities to various library ILS, Discovery Layers, and electronic article databases.