Ramblings, citations and "brainwaves" of a college librarian in Toronto. 475 square feet refers to the size of my home, not the size of my office or library.

Value of Search

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"Kevin Kelly asserts that "The value of web search is in the hundreds of billions. But what is most interesting to me, is that this huge "industry," this huge appetite, has materialized out of nowhere. If we ask 800 billion questions today and expect to get instant answers, where were those 800 billion questions 20 years ago?"
The other classic search route is the library. US libraries in the 1990s counted about 1 billion library visits per year. Out of those 1 billion, about 300 million were "reference transactions," or questions. We could be generous and count any visit to the library a "search," as in searching for a book or topic.
"Search has been considered a non-essential luxury. But once it becomes ubiquitous, good, and free, we will find it is no longer a luxury but essential. As long as there are biz models that will deliver this good for free, this value will be hidden. The free in fact disguises its value. I believe we are at a cusp where we become increasingly dependent on search.""

Kevin Kelly

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