From this weeks reading, it seems that the definition of digital libraries is still in flux. The reason for this is that two different groups of people are working on this definition, one consists of computer programmers and researchers and the other consists of librarians. They differ on their definition based on their backgrounds and what they see the purpose of digital libraries being. Part of this disconnect seems to stem from the fact that they have no common ground. Librarians are not computer programmers and vice versa. I agree with Twidale and Nichols idea of computational sense. Librarians do not need to become experts in programming but they do really need to understand the basics of programming so that they will be able express to programmers exactly what they expect out of their digital library. Others have also reiterated this idea within the library community. An example is the new library director at Madison Public Library, Greg Michaels. He came to our Information Management course last semester to discuss his experience and he expressed the need for librarians who are knowledgeable in computer programming as they could be very valuable in this technological age. Additionally, if the two groups were able to communicate more effectively, then the definition of digital libraries would be more concrete.
The definition that I tend to agree with is the librarians’ idea that digital libraries should exist as a branch or extension of the library system. The digital library should offer many of the services that any other non-digital library would offer. A question I have is what is the current definition of digital libraries? Since the most recent reading this week was from 2009 and many were from 2000 or earlier, has anything changed in this debate and has the definition become more agreed upon?