Computer-based library or computer-based learning?


Traditionally, libraries have played the role of repository of published information resources and, more recently, gateway to online subscription databases. The library online catalog and digital library interface serve an intermediary function to help users locate information resources available through the library. With competition from Web search engines and Web portals of various kinds available for free, the library has to step up to play a more active role as guide and coach to help users make use of information resources for learning or to accomplish particular tasks. It is no longer sufficient for computer-based library systems to provide just search and access functions. They must provide the functionality and environment to support learning and become computer-based learning systems. This paper examines the kind of learning support that can be incorporated in library online catalogs and digital libraries, including 1) enhanced support for information browsing and synthesis through linking by shared meta-data, references and concepts; 2) visualization of related information; 3) adoption of Library 2.0 and social technologies; 4) adoption of Library 3.0 technologies including intelligent processing and text mining

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