I would characterize this sort of topic as a Policy Comparison, in which an individual or group sends out `feelers' on the net, in an attempt to learn from the mistakes and successes of others before implementing their own policy. Here is a chart of current topics on the CWIS-L list, with the number of topics in each thread displayed on the left hand side of each thread title. Our focal topic is in boldface type.
bit.listserv.cwis-l (18T 41A 4K 0H R) h=help =============================================================================== 1 + 8 Complete course catalogs online via Gopher or Web? 2 + 3 Needs 3 + Commercial Entities on CWIS's 4 + unsubscription 5 + 2 subscription 6 + News Services 7 + 2 Gopher+ and Forms 8 + 6 Central campus calendar/CWIS index 9 + OS/2 Gopher Server NNTP Gateway Question 10 + Cello v1.0 released 11 + 4 Hunting for Hunt Helpers 12 + 5 Student Computer Fee 13 + January Hunt Results (at last) 14 + ASIS Mid-Year Meeting 15 + Subscribe 16 + Subscription to CWIS-L <n>=set current to n, TAB=next unread, /=search pattern, ^K)ill/select, a)uthor search, c)atchup, j=line down, k=line up, K=mark read, l)ist thread, |=pipe, m)ail, o=print, q)uit, r=toggle all/unread, s)ave, t)ag, w=post
``What is the physical appearance of a future library going to look like?'' My contention is that on one hand the funds to build could just as well go into equipping everyone's home with a PC or interactive terminal and CD ROM and do away with the building with the books.
The message was posted on their behalf, appropriately enough, by the ``Networked Information Access Coordinator'' at UCSB. The first respondent appears to be a LIS student from Texas named Trudy Lamb. Her response included five key points of advice based on her recent research. Another respondent added that ``the new library at IUPUI'' has some interesting techno-plans worth looking into. I hope the non-net recipients of this message can decipher that acronym (I sure can't!). To close the thread, the Billy Barron made a ``Teleread'' policy document available to members of the listserv via his ftp site. I wonder if the original information seekers will ever get to see this document. Below is a snapshot of the recent threads of discussion on the PACS-L Listserv:
bit.listserv.pacs-l (85T 96A 0K 0H R) h=help =============================================================================== 33 + Commentary on FINS, Vol.2, No.4 34 + 4 Libraries of the Future 35 + Internet Training 36 + Position Vacancy 37 + Vacancy Announcment 38 + New System at LPI 39 + Internet access using Windows 40 + GOPHERS & OTHER SERVERS of SCHOLARLY SOCIETIES 41 + ALAO Workshop on Communication Skills, 3/11/94 42 + International Centre for Distance Learning - Database 43 + New Electronic Math Journal 44 + POSITION ANNOUNCEMENTS- MS, IL, TX 45 + email to S.Africa 46 + Internet access for public libraries 47 + President's Day Etext of FDR 48 + MaasInfo net-indexes&documents, what they are, where to find them <n>=set current to n, TAB=next unread, /=search pattern, ^K)ill/select, a)uthor search, c)atchup, j=line down, k=line up, K=mark read, l)ist thread, |=pipe, m)ail, o=print, q)uit, r=toggle all/unread, s)ave, t)ag, w=post
I joined this thread of discussion, in-progress, while it was comparing the demise of public transportation in L.A. to the anticipated demise of the Internet. The gist of the conversation has ranged from: censorship-to-kids-using-the-internet-to-Al-Gore's-speech-at-UCLA-to-Effect-of-new-users-on-the-Net-to-information-access-for-kids-to-corporate-sponsorship-of-NREN-and-last-night-it-was-back-to-the-L.A.-streetcar-analogy. All of these messages are loosely tied to the theme of (potential) Internet demise. None of the issues are resolved. I would characterize this thread as a true conversation--people express much more reaction, emotion, and opinion than I observed on any of the six library listserver sources I regularly read. In addition to the original thread of conversation, several `child' threads, tangent to this ongoing conversation, have spun off, and are italicized in the screen capture below:
alt.culture.usenet (58T 256A 0K 0H R) h=help =============================================================================== 17 + post Usenet via e-mail? 18 + 6 Your Help = Free Book 19 + Reply from Andrews about C. Thomas, ex orion admin 20 + immenent drowning of the net in sticky brown liquid 21 + LOOKING FOR 2600 readers & PHREAKS 22 + 75 Imminent Death of the Net? 23 + 4 myth about the joys of "reference threading" 24 + Introduction to Blacknet 25 + 5 Is personal email withering? 26 + 7 Imminent Death of the Net? (2 cheep to meter ?) 27 + Public transport in L.A. nonexistant? (Re: Imminent Death of the 28 + Kids on the net 29 + 36 net.bigots (was Re: Imminent Death of the Net?) 30 + Imminent Death of the Net? was Re: wwwaaaaAAAAAUUUUGGGHHH!!!! 31 + The true dynamics of Usenet (was: no other zoos posting?) 32 + >>dead.artist<< <n>=set current to n, TAB=next unread, /=search pattern, ^K)ill/select, a)uthor search, c)atchup, j=line down, k=line up, K=mark read, l)ist thread, |=pipe, m)ail, o=print, q)uit, r=toggle all/unread, s)ave, t)ag, w=post