History, Evolution, and Impact of Digital Libraries

History, Evolution, and Impact of Digital Libraries

Leonardo Candela (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Italy), Donatella Castelli (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Italy) and Pasquale Pagano (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Italy)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-031-0.ch001
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Digital Libraries have achieved a fundamental role in our knowledge society. By making the wealth of material contained in libraries, museum, archives and any knowledge repository worldwide available they are giving citizens in every place of the world the opportunity to appreciate their global cultural heritage and use it for study, work or leisure. They are revolutionising the whole knowledge management lifecycle. In this chapter, the history characterizing these “knowledge enabling technologies” is described. The history starts from the early attempts toward systems supporting knowledge discovery and reaches the current age in which a plethora of different realizations of digital library systems coexist. The evolutionary process conducting to the current, multi-instanced and still evolving status of affairs as well as the motivations governing it are identified and presented. The main initiatives and milestones producing the nowadays instances of these knowledge enabling systems are mentioned. Finally, the impact these systems had and are having on various aspects of our society is discussed.
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2. Digital Libraries: The Early Times

The digital library concept can be traced back to the famous papers of foreseer scientists like Vannevar Bush and J.C.R. Licklider identifying and pursuing the goal of innovative technologies and approaches toward knowledge sharing as fundamental instruments for progress. Bush (Bush, 1945) devised “a device in which an individual stores all his books, records, and communications, and which is mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility.”. Moreover, on top of it there is “a transparent platen. On this are placed longhand notes, photographs, memoranda, all sorts of things”. Because of the lack of digital support, he identified in “improved microfilm” the means for content storage and exchange: “contents are purchased on microfilm ready for insertion. Books of all sorts, pictures, current periodicals, newspapers, are thus obtained and dropped into place”. Of course, he envisaged also support for knowledge discovery (“provision for consultation of the record by the usual scheme of indexing”), access (“to consult a certain book, he taps its code on the keyboard, and the title page of the book promptly appears before him”) and management (“new forms of encyclopedias will appear, ready made with a mesh of associative trails running through them, ready to be dropped into the memex and there amplified”). Licklider realized that computers were getting to be powerful enough to support the type of automated library systems that Bush had described and in 1965, wrote his book (Licklider, 1965) about how a computer could provide an automated library with simultaneous remote use by many different people through access to a common database. Because of this, Licklider is also considered a pioneer of Internet and in its book he established the connection between Internet and digital library. Thus, it is not surprising that research and development activity on digital libraries started in the early 1990s, with the Internet proliferation, and that Internet has created unprecedented possibilities to discover and deliver human knowledge.

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Ioannis Iglezakis, Tatiani-Eleni Synodinou, Sarantos Kapidakis
Chapter 1
Leonardo Candela, Donatella Castelli, Pasquale Pagano
Digital Libraries have achieved a fundamental role in our knowledge society. By making the wealth of material contained in libraries, museum... Sample PDF
History, Evolution, and Impact of Digital Libraries
Chapter 2
Hussein Suleman
This chapter present the principles and practices of interoperability – the ability of systems to work together – as it pertains to digital... Sample PDF
Interoperability in Digital Libraries
Chapter 3
Nicola Ferro
This chapter deals with the problem of defining and assessing the quality of a digital library. The chapter will provide a brief excursus on the... Sample PDF
Quality and Interoperability: The Quest for the Optimal Balance
Chapter 4
András Micsik
This chapter addresses the collaborative aspects of digital libraries as a special case of Computer Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW). Libraries... Sample PDF
Collaboration through Digital Libraries
Chapter 5
Martin Holmes, Laurent Romary
In this chapter, the authors examine the issue of digital formats for document encoding, archiving and publishing, through the specific example of... Sample PDF
Encoding Models for Scholarly Literature: Does the TEI Have a Word to Say?
Chapter 6
Dimitrios Margounakis, Dionysios Politis
Nowadays, there is a great increase in music distribution over the Internet. This phenomenon is common in many countries and therefore involves many... Sample PDF
Music Libraries: How Users Interact with Music Stores and Repositories
Chapter 7
Monica Landoni
This chapter will introduce a definition and an analysis of user needs when reading electronic books. The way users interact with e-books is... Sample PDF
E-Books in Digital Libraries
Chapter 8
Sarantos Kapidakis
The digital era has brought a change to the information world. Digital information is collected in repositories, is described with metadata and is... Sample PDF
Emerging Challenges of the Digital Information
Chapter 9
Agnès Lucas-Schloetter
While cultural institutions such as libraries, museums and archives wish to digitize their collections for preservation purposes and make the... Sample PDF
Digital Libraries and Copyright Issues: Digitization of Contents and the Economic Rights of the Authors
Chapter 10
Anthoula Papadopoulou
The present chapter deals with the challenges faced by moral rights in the digital environment, especially as they pertain to digital libraries. It... Sample PDF
The Digitization of Contents in Digital Libraries: Moral Right and Limits
Chapter 11
Maria-Daphne Papadopoulou
A new category of works creates a number of problems in the world of digital libraries, and not only, and that is, the ‘orphan’ works. Those works... Sample PDF
The Issue of ‘Orphan’ Works in Digital Libraries
Chapter 12
Tatiani-Eleni Synodinou
This chapter explains the application of EU Directive 96/9 to digital libraries. Digital libraries correspond largely to the broad definition of... Sample PDF
The Protection of Digital Libraries as Databases: An Ideal Choice or a Paradox?
Chapter 13
Christophe Geiger
Challenged by new technology, copyright is currently in turmoil. Increasingly regarded by the general public as a curb to the universal... Sample PDF
Copyright and Digital Libraries: Securing Access to Information in the Digital Age1
Chapter 14
Maria G. Sinanidou
In the digital era knowledge and information are becoming more and more online accessible. In this perspective, libraries have a vital function in... Sample PDF
Digital Libraries and Web Linking
Chapter 15
Dionysia Kallinikou, Marinos Papadopoulos, Alexandra Kaponi, Vassiliki Strakantouna
The development of Digital libraries and repositories, a worldwide vision with enormous political and ideological importance for humanity, in an... Sample PDF
Intellectual Property Issues for Digital Libraries at the Intersection of Law, Technology, and the Public Interest
Chapter 16
Galateia Kapellakou, Marina Markellou, Evangelia Vagena
The basic issue examined in this chapter is how can open access be achieved through the instrument of contracts. In the digital environment right... Sample PDF
Open Content in Libraries: Contractual Issues
Chapter 17
Nadia Kyprouli
This chapter deals with the new digital environment that embraces newspaper content. The notions of newspapers, news, articles, photographs... Sample PDF
Newspapers and Digital Libraries
Chapter 18
Charis Tsigou
The digital reproduction and transmission of audiovisual works seems to be the next stage of dissemination and commercial exploitation of protected... Sample PDF
The Audiovisual Works as Digital Library Content: Storage and Exploitation
Chapter 19
Ioannis Iglezakis
Digital libraries provide many advantages compared with traditional libraries, such as wide and round the clock availability of resources, lack of... Sample PDF
Personal Data Protection in Digital Libraries
Chapter 20
Thanos K. Tsingos
Internet allows free access of information to anyone, without any particular quantitative, temporal or geographical restriction. At the same time... Sample PDF
Liability of Hosting Provider with Regard to Open Libraries
Chapter 21
Nikitas Hatzimihail
New technologies, and the digitization of works of intellect in particular, have led to an explosive expansion of transnational litigation... Sample PDF
Copyright Infringement of Digital Libraries and Private International Law: Jurisdiction Issues
Chapter 22
Stylianos Korres, Eva Kokotsaki
The entire world‘s cultural and educational resources are being more and more produced, distributed and accessed in digital form, rather than on... Sample PDF
Preservation of Cultural and Scientific Heritage by Means of Digital Libraries
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