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Online Libraries

Do libraries need to be buildings that hold thousands of books? Should librarians know how the Internet works? In "Online libraries" (Philippine Daily Inquirer, 16 November 2005), Michael Tan seems to take these questions for granted. Instead, he writes about the Chan Robles Virtual Law Library and Project Gutenberg—both of which have been featured in "Filipiniana Online"—and other sites that I've been planning to feature.

Tan mentions the University of the Philippines' subscriptions to electronic databases (erroneously identified on UP's website as "Electronic Journals") like Proquest, but misses the Philippine eLib, which allows students in other public universities to access electronic databases. Perhaps those behind the Philippine eLib need to promote their product more.

And then he ends with a statement that all librarians need to reflect on:

I still like the feel of an old-fashioned book, where you get to flip the pages with your fingers, but I don't mind reading an electronic version, especially if it's free. It's an exciting world out there, and the Internet's going to make it so much easier for us to explore it.

Category: Internet

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