electronic publication

Jerry Brickler lcjbrick at ANTELOPE.WCC.EDU
Mon Apr 24 13:30:28 CDT 1995

On Mon, 24 Apr 1995, Joseph H. Kirkbride, Jr. wrote:

> On Sat, 22 Apr 1995, Timothy Rowe wrote:
> > However, these messages overlook a more significant point, which is that the
> > real cost in time and labor is in the digitizing process - in converting
> > analog records like old monographs or in generating new digital information.
> > Once the data are stored in digital format, it is trivial to convert them
> > to some other format provided that reasonable choices were made in picking
> > the initial data format.
> >From your point of view and from mine, format conversion seems a trivial
> matter.  Ten to twenty years from now when a library has millions of
> CD-ROMs to convert, it is no longer a trivial matter.  Libraries have
> been so successful exactly because they only had to conserve materials,
> not convert everything every few decades.

> In terms of one item, conversion is not difficult (if the equipment is
> still available), but in terms of an entire library, it is monumental.

Will libraries have CD-ROM in ten to twenty years?  All indicators point
to the read only format being replaced by one that allows the user to save
to compact or mini-disc in 5 years or less.  If that is the case, then the
ROM format is rapidly facing becoming obsolete.  The question for
consideration isn't whether technology should be incorporated into library
holdings (think of all the trees we'll save) but how to do so to eliminate future compatibility problems.

Jerry Bricker
Dept. of Biology
Laramie County Comm. College
Cheyenne, WY 82007
Voice telephone: 307-778-1139
FAX: 307-778-1399
Internet: lcjbrick at antelope.wcc.edu

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