Skip to content

The Information “Explosion”

Boy, remember that phrase – – “The Information Explosion”. It was big when I was a young adult. Very McLuhan. Of course, you need to remember this was BEFORE the advent of electronic information, the Internet or the web! I was reminded of the phrase when I saw this posting at Business Insider.

Content Is No Longer King: Curation Is King

Read more:

So then I remember when all the pundits thought that all those webpages were an information “tsunami”. They hadn’t seen nuthin’ yet! Now, in June 2010, we’re really starting to see moreinformationthananyonecouldeverhandle.

So many webpages, videos, audiofiles, books, articles, phone calls, social media, and on and on and one. Wow!

Content can’t be king. It can’t focus and it’s too big to get organized in any sort of cohesive fashion. And it’s growing and growing and there’s more and more. Stuff can be old or new and still be valuable.

Therefore the curators shall inherit the earth! Those professions that can filter, organize, target, and make sense of the information maelstrom will do well – as long as they present their value in ways that people can appreciate, understand and trust. There are many sensemaking professions that should so well in the era of toomuchinformation – teachers, professors, sociologists, historians, archivists, publishers, writers, researchers, museum programmers, and more allied professions. Librarians help make sense of information as well as serving all of the sensemaking professions. We should do well.

W00t! Librarians rock.


Posted on: June 23, 2010, 9:05 am Category: Uncategorized

One Response

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. That’s an interesting article, thanks for sharing it.

    If there’s a ton of digital information, it’s not likely the analog professionals that will get a boost. The computer programmers, interface designers, and shade-tree startup entrepreneurs are the sense-makers of present and future information. It also appears that much of the content curation is crowd-sourced.

    It’s inefficient and infeasible for humans to root through the maelstrom of content: we’ve already effectively shown that computers can help us find what we’re looking for, whether specific information to fulfill a need through search, or relevant content just for fun via aggregation. Emerging is geo-targeted information via forms of augmented reality, also handled by computers. And people usually only pay for this information through ads.

    Where content is curated by humans, take mahalo or wikipedia or reddit for instance, the site owners built a community of people who compile relevant content for free.

    If the field of library science wishes to jump into sense-making on the web, the curriculum of library school can no longer be so book-centric. It hurts creativity to put cataloging in the context of MARC, as if a 30-year-old interchange format is even a well-formed way to store and communicate records. We have a long way to go.

    I share you optimism that librarians will be relevant in the increasingly-digital world; I just don’t think we’re currently set up to be effective content curators in the sense forwarded by the article.

    The effing librarian has an interesting post today about disparity in interfaces and the new language literacies it’s necessary for patrons to learn. I can definitely see us being literacy tutors for those that need it, and expertly-transliterate information seekers for those that need additional web prowess.

    And yes, librarians rock.