Walt Crawford's Website: Online Extras
Libraries, Media, and the Future

This subsite contains "extras" relating to my interests in libraries, media, and the future.

Such extras may include versions of speeches that carry some particular interest, articles in this area that didn't get published, or essays that don't really fit anywhere else.

Everything on this site is written by and copyright Walt Crawford, with all rights reserved. If you think something here would interest someone else, why not send them the URL for this site or the particular page?

Three overall cautions:

  • Some of these texts are much too long to read comfortably on-screen; I suggest you download them or print them from your browser.
  • I have generally not made any effort to clean up Word's idea of HTML output--and, worse, some older pieces were formatted for Ventura publication. If you see strange "<xx>" or "@xx = " stuff, that's the reason.
  • If you're reading something identified as a speech, you can be reasonably confident that what you're reading isn't what I actually said. It doesn't work that way.

    "DVD Today and Tomorrow"
    Added July 12, 2000

    My keynote for the ACRL program "Byting into Video: DVD and Networked Video Delivery," delivered July 8, 2000, at the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago, IL. Converted and mounted here based on listener request.

    "Talking About Public Access: PACS-L's First Decade"
    Added April 2, 2000

    A tribute to the first decade of PACS-L--but not a memorial, since PACS-L reappeared in March 2000.

    Note: if this one seems much more like a formal article than most of what's here, that's because it is--but I believe it's too long and informal for formal publication in any of my normal venues. (If you're an editor and disagree, let me know!).

    I plan to prepare a 2,000-word version of this 7,900-word article and submit that shorter version to American Libraries; if that happens (if I'm successful in boiling this down to one-quarter its current size) and it's accepted (not a sure thing), the Web article may disappear for a couple of months around the time the shorter version appears (or it may not). Similarly, if someone does offer to publish this long version and the terms make sense to me, the Web version may go dark for a while.

    "Dear Bella": An Informal Response
    Added January 3, 2000

    An informal response to a letter from Bella Hass Weinberg in the January 2000 American Libraries.

    "Gutting America's Local Libraries:
    Informal comments on 'Building Earth's Largest Library'"
    Added August 30, 1999. Abbreviated version added August 26, 2000: the link now offers you a choice of versions.

    Against my better judgment, I'm offering this lengthy, badly organized commentary. I suppose the title makes it clear that I'm not one of Coffman's Crusaders.

"Arizona: What's the Point?"
Added July 18, 1999

A few comments on the speech and handout (below)--noting some of the failed predictions and good guesses in the two texts.

"The Death of Print, Project Xanadu, and Other Nightmares"
The Arizona Talk: Added May 23, 1999

Until 1992, I had spoken once every year or two on some fascinating topic such as technical standards, typefaces, or personal computing. Almost all of my writing was on personal computing and related issues, except for the occasional article directly related to RLG (or, before that, UC Berkeley).

Then the Library Automation Round Table of the Arizona State Library Association invited me to give their program at the 1992 ASLA conference in Phoenix. The people inviting me weren't sure what they wanted me to talk about, but would get back to me.

By the time they got back to me, I knew what I wanted to talk about--all the nonsense I was reading about the death of print, and similar issues. They said OK. That was, in essence, the start of almost all my speaking since then, quite a few articles, and the two books I've written or cowritten since then.

(Technically, I did do a speech about future libraries and resources in 1989, at the California Library Association conference, but I'd forgotten that speech and nothing much came of it. The written portion has long since vanished.)

I wound up doing a "speech and a half."

Here's the speech as it was prepared, and pretty much as it was given.

Here's the accompanying handout, which added material that I knew I couldn't cover in an hour.

I haven't touched a word of this (other than trivial reformatting); if my seven-year-old comments are odd in 1999 (and odder in 2005!), so be it.


Updated July 18, 2005