thousands of hits, good news or bad?

Somehow missed this last week — an excellent point/counterpoint [in the form of a blog entry and comment] over at the OCLC blog. Topic? That ongoing “Do we make the library more like Google, or make Google more like the library?” I think it also points out another hidden conflict area that is fast becoming a favorite topic of mine: to what extent do we let the software dictate the way the user can search, and hopefully find? ALA’s ballots are being distributed over a one week [for e-ballots] or two week [paper] schedule. Why can’t we send them all at once? Because ALA worries about server overload problems. Is this saving the time of the user? Does Google?

Pretend you’ve never ever been in a large library. Pretend you know absolutely nothing about taxonomies. Pretend you don’t know the difference between a magazine, a journal, an index and a book. Pretend you don’t know what you don’t know, and don’t know how to articulate your unknowingness. Once you’ve pretended all this, make a pretend visit to a very large library for the first time.