Posted by: bluesyemre | May 24, 2012

How is Google different from traditional Library OPACs & databases?

  • It’s a truism in library circles today to say that Google and web search engines (I will use “Google” as a stand in for web search engines) have changed the way users search which in turn affects what they expect from searches in the library. Libraries have two ways to react, first is to try to change user behavior through information literacy or altering the library catalogues and databases to fit user expectations. If one goes by the famous “User is not broken” meme, the later seems to be the way to go. That said how is Google different from typical library catalogues or even library databases? In particular Web Scale Discovery products which are pretty much Google like search engines have the potential to be exactly like Google but what exactly are we talking about and if it’s possible should we do it?


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