Library 2.0 world of searching

Searching is an essential skill for our Google Generation. Have you noticed the primacy of Google in the minds of students? Have you been told that libraries don’t matter because we have Google? This is not a bad thing really, as we are being forced to consider the complexity of our online world, and the remarkable range and depth of information resources that are available to us.

Thinking about this and developments in libraries I re-read a post written while back at Informancy on the shift in libraries and librarians raised some really interesting issues in the post and comments. Lets just take the issue of searching…

In library and information science precision and recall are two critical elements of the organization and retrieval of information in that they are inversely related. As the rate of recall grows with every addition to the Google database, the level of precision for responses from a Google search falls. Library and information science is about finding ways to increase both of these levels in tandem…that would be the holy grail of searching.

Searching is certainly at the crux of our ongoing debate – and perhaps the area that we need to grapple with most in terms of positioning (school) Library 2.0.

Comment to that post really grabbed my attention..

to me it seems pretty clear that in a net-centric environment, we’re more likely to find our solution to the needle in a haystack with advances in social software technologies tied to intelligent agents. As our folksonomies grow and contextualize information within knowledge seeking and knowledge sharing communities, the value of personalized agents should increase.

Christopher Harris also said

In a recent workshop that involved envisioning libraries 10 years from now, one of the things that stuck out most clearly for me was the need for the library to be the search engine. …. In a virtual library dealing with electronic resources, my avatar can move through rooms that are the facets of the information.

These comments help me to make sense of some ideas that I have put into a paper recently related to Library 2.0. Amongst the usual things I also suggested that future Library 2.0 developments might include

  • Searching of social network repositories alongside federated searching
  • Searching of other search aggregators such as Technorati
  • personalisation of the information research process with a personal library storage space
  • addition of virtual library environments such as Second Life
  • addition of read/write interactivity and Fan Fiction type activities
  • and ultimately ….adaptive hypermedia responsiveness to search strategies, stored information, personal tag structures and subject requirements

What we need is a new Library 2.0 Matrix – that allows us to draw elements from the resource environment of the library/information user and the Web 2.0 environment of the library/inforamtion user. This matrix would allow our schools students to move and be transparently and intuitively in both environments, rather than in two seperate environments – as they now are.

Need to get a good graphic to demonstrate this….sometime.

Here a more good thoughts from elearnspace:

Most of what we call “social network tools” will eventually just be features of existing tools. In very limited ways, this is starting with MS Outlook (and other email/communication tools) – the notification that someone is online, the link to names in address books, etc. are first run attempts at making social networking a part of work…not an activity separate from work

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