By Robert Lee Chartrand (Eds.)
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Extra info for Computers in the Service of Society
We must first attack the philosophical problems of what we save and for what purposes; we can then attack the interface problems. Simplistically stated, one should implement a user's requirement study of the entire nation so that he can develop the national parameters of information acquisition, storage, and retrieval. Mr. Walter Kravitz (The Library of Congress) : I had hoped that someone else would make this point before I did, and I thought Professor Kayton 32 Computers in the Service of Society was going to make it.
Kravitz, with which I mostly agree. When people call for a government policy on various things or ask why the government doesn't set standards on various things, they are forgetting that many times it simply doesn't know how to. I don't think the government knows how to set a standard on what an information system should look like, and I am not sure that I, as a citizen, want it to. When automobiles were invented they weren't invented as conveyances that would naturally drive on the right side of the road, nor was this a policy set by the government.
What is needed is serious and reasoned discourse, the charting out of territories and responsibilities, genuine listening to varying perspectives from government, academia, publishing, scholarly societies, librarianship, and other quarters. Ultimately, a reasonable reconstruction and, perhaps, a blueprint for effort and responsibility will emerge. The leadership in such a public form may perhaps best be sought from Colonel Aines. How such discourse can best be brought about is as much and more a concern of his than any of us, since Comments 37 virtually all the rest of us tend to see the world through the narrow aperture of our own disciplinary, professional, technological, or proprietary interest.
Computers in the Service of Society by Robert Lee Chartrand (Eds.)