The informational infrastructure

October 4, 2018

The infrastructure of the library is made up of the information it holds, an infrastructure of knowledge, history, culture, society, science, art and so much more.

Failure of the infrastructure of the library would then probably be the failure to provide accurate (and unbiased), current or sought after information.

Encountering such failures is how I’ve grown through libraries, first the one at my elementary school and later my small town’s public library. When a library doesn’t hold the range of the knowledge I need or want, I know my expertise and interest have outgrown them, and by extension I myself have as well. In a way it can also be looked upon not as a failure, but the end, or dead end, of that particular infrastructural line/passage since the infrastructure of each library is different.

The failure to provide unbiased information, or failure to have all views represented, can also be looked upon as a failure of the infrastructure or a flaw. That comes back to my earlier thoughts on the gender of authors, and the views that are represented, which historically have mostly been white cis males which creates a gap in the knowledge of the infrastructure. Therefore by extension it could be asserted that all libraries infrastructures fail in some way.

Another way of looking at a failure of the libraries infrastructure is to consider how it’s adapting to the technology of the modern world. Nowadays we can find almost anything on the internet and google or Wikipedia tend to be the first place we look for information, no matter what we are looking for.

The books themselves are the physical representation of the infrastructure but when the physical part becomes irrelevant what becomes of the physical space of the library?

It might become the grand failure of the infrastructure of the library to fail to adapt and therefore become dispensable infrastructure.

In my view I think it could be the space that keeps the libraries operating, or spurs on the need and demand for that particular infrastructure. The infrastructure space is open, has an abundant of information and knowledge we trust and creates a “space” where the focus is to convey knowledge.

 

-Ásta

One Response to “The informational infrastructure”

  1. mariaolssoneklund Says:

    Interesting. Yes, the greatest challenge for libraries is the digital development. The costs for staying relevant and updated digitally: having enough computers, being able to let people borrow Ipads to use in the library etc. (which often gets stolen unfortunately), building digital competence among staff and also to be able to buy the newest books from the whole world, its a challenge. For many libraries are the second home though. Especially for people living in poor areas. / Maria


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