Posted by: bluesyemre | May 22, 2017

The Librarian of Congress #CarlaHayden weighs in on why #CardCatalogs matter

woman_at_main_reading_room_card_catalog

The tech is gone, but it’s not forgotten. Carla Hayden explains why

Orderly boxes of cards once filled libraries large and small, and even the most humble of books boasted a catalog card of its own. But when the company that made the cards stopped printing them in 2015, the sun finally set on the card catalog, a book-finding system more than a century old.

Meanwhile, something new was on the horizon for the nation’s most important library. Last year, Carla Hayden became the nation’s new Librarian of Congress—the first professional librarian to serve in the role in decades, and the first African-American and woman to boot.

In her inaugural speech, Hayden promised to harness the power of technology to bring the library into the 21st century, calling for digitization, classroom connectivity and private-sector partnerships. She’s since made good on her promise, making metadata from 25 million MARC records (the very documents once enshrined on catalog cards) available to the public.

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/librarian-congress-weighs-why-card-catalogs-matter-180963371/


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