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Monday, May 15, 2006

The Google Library: 8th Wonder of the Modern World

Google is seeing the end of the tunnel, in digitalizing every book, and expression of media known to man. This has been no small accomplishment.

From the days of Sumerian clay tablets till now, humans have "published" at
least 32 million books, 750 million articles and essays, 25 million songs, 500
million images, 500,000 movies, 3 million videos, TV shows and short films and
100 billion public Web pages. All this material is currently contained in all
the libraries and archives of the world. From The New
York Times Magazine

Consolidating this in one large digital library is a feat to gigantic proportions.

The Alexandra Library of the ancients was the next best effort of recording all human knowledge. It was reported that it contained from 30 to 70 percent of all the world's knowledge at the time. Unfortunately, the library was lost.

Just to house the digital disks of the digital library would take a building perhaps a little larger than the Lynchburg Public Library. Well, that is today. Tomorrow it may fit in a device as small as an IPOD.

To read more on the Google effort to make one single digital library: The New York Times Magazine offers a 10 page article which covers this and more.

Picture of a Sumerian clay tablet.


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