A recent article pointed out that the academic library is no more. It has passed on. Ceased to be. Libraries have expired. Bereft of life, they rest in peace. Their metabolic processes are now history, kicked the bucket, shuffled off their mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible. THIS IS AN EX-CAREER!
So sad. But we as librarians should have seen this coming. History tried to tell us this was the way, but somewhat ironically for those that chronicle history, we did not not listen. Hell, history even tried to halt these psychos all together by stopping their immortality, but librarians did not see until it was too late.
Hit the jump to see the one's who doomed us all.
1. Ptolemy (I, 323–283 BC; II, 283–246 BC)
With the creation of the Library of Alexandria, this guy (or his son) stole knowledge from the scholars and merchants of the time and decided all on his own to place it in one of the greatest depositories of knowledge of all time. The notion of collecting information has never really been a new concept, but this grand, government-sponsored project spelled the beginning of the end for the modern library.
2. Johannes Gutenberg (1398-1468)
With the creation of his "moveable type," Gutenberg (no relation) took the power of the written word away from the rich and the clergy and put it in dirty, lower-class hands of the poor. This mass production of books created cheaper and more quickly-made reading materials, spreading information faster than ever before. Somebody should have kindled a fire underneath him.
3. Charles Cutter (1837-1903)
Oh, here's a rich one. Charlie Cut here decided that the library was too haphazard a place and started just lumping things together into a formula that would be used to form the Library of Congress cataloging system. Then, he took over a little public library and, like the Zach Morris of his day, he started in on silly schemes such as creating early bookmobiles, theorizing inter-library loan systems, and letting the public roam free in the stacks. He even wrote a little article where he predicted the OPAC. If he had had his way, he would have a "Max" in every lobby, too.
4. Melvil Dewey (1851-1931)
From the ashes of a goofy name comes Melvil Dewey, or "The Dew" as the girls called him. This micromanaging ball of fun formed not only a more simple way to subjugate knowledge to human control but the idea of an association of information professionals that could standardize information management procedures. Oh, he didn't do all that on his own, Charlie Cut up there helped, but he's the one with his name on the system.
5. S. R. Ranganathan (1892-1972)
This high-horse mounted dude formed the Five Laws of librarianship and proposed collecting library materials into environments designed to make information more accessible. This brainwashing of his colleagues spawned the "user friendly" era of thought throughout librarian brain-sponges everywhere. "Every book, its reader" indeed.
6. Alan Turning (1912-1954)
Are there more well known names in computer science? Maybe. But this is the guy that theorized that machines could organize and collect information on massive levels, even do so by themselves, allowing for more complex information management through complex machines. This is the architect of computer science, the Duke of Databases, the King of Kilobytes. Turning is the reason our overlords might like us one day, then kill us because they cannot find their Father.
7. Steve Jobs (1955-2011)
Are there more well known names in computer science? No. Just N-O. Co-founder of Apple computers and the guy that opened up the world to the idea that not only could machines be used in the patron's homes to access and create information, but that it could be done in a simple and user friendly environment on cheap machines. Jobs is what would happen if Cutter took Ranganathan and Turning and played "Will it Blend?" with their mind sponges.
There they are, seven jackasses that taught humanity that they could store all their knowledge in an automated environment that was well organized and accessible to all. Oh, there are more jackasses of information out there being celebrated and stuff, but these bastards of bookishness should have been stopped before they got going. Then I would not have to think about getting an IT degree along with this MLIS.