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Magazines > Computers in Libraries > April 2023

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Vol. 43 No. 3 — April 2023
Putting It All Out There
by Dick Kaser

Today’s expansive and complex digital landscape contains many challenges, threats, and opportunities. The authors in this issue have big ideas and a lot of practical advice for coping with our changing digital world.

In her EDTECH feature, Suzanne LaPierre discusses how the advent of social media has propelled the exposure of diverse library collections and at the same time exposed collections to public scrutiny. What’s a defamed librarian to do? 

In his think piece on the future of libraries, M Ryan Hess notes how Web3 may come to the rescue. Blockchain, he observes, has the potential to create the perfect digital library—which, among other things, would be nearly impossible to censor. Other big topics explored in this issue are Terence Huwe’s observations about how business models are driving a focus on articles rather than journals and what that means for scholarship going forward. And in the Online Searcher section, Phil Bradley takes on the hot topic of intelligent search. On the practical side, Jessamyn West—who writes our Practical Technology column—reminds us that QR codes still work to get people seamlessly onto networks and to the apps that will help them use the library’s digital collections.

Li Chen and Karen Doster-Greenleaf tell how they use SAGE’s Lean Library browser-based extension to direct users to a licensed digital copy of a book or research paper right from the user’s search engine of choice. Alyssa Hanson discusses how you can use progressive web apps to give your users reliable library access that is not dependent on rapidly changing smartphone OSs. And Marie Day and Xueying Chen talk about how they tapped into OCLC’s massive holdings data to weed their monograph collection using OCLC’s GreenGlass web-based app.

As always, this issue only goes to show once again that when presented with challenges, librarians are quick to spot the opportunity to streamline processes, improve access, and all in all make things better for their patrons and users.

Dick Kaser, Executive Editor

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