If there is anyone left in the world who still thinks of librarians as unworldly collectors of dusty books and manuscripts, this jam-packed issue of LIBER Quarterly is very well suited to dispel that image. Present-day librarians are managers — of large-scale building projects, of security risks, of balancing the interests between online access and possible damage to original books and journals, of access by welcome new, but unknowledgeable users to cartographic treasures.
Truth be told, the word ‘dinosaur’ is used twice in this issue, but only by librarians themselves in subtle mock of their own former selves. In all other respects, the four conferences presented in this issue and the various working groups that organised them focus on state-of-the-art ideas and technology in a continuing effort to improve services to on-site and on-line library patrons.
Each of these conferences developed an excellent website where most of the powerpoint presentations were mounted, and I would certainly recommend any LIBER Quarterly reader to make use of this additional source of information — especially for the Architecture Group conference.
The links are:
Architecture conference: http://www.zhbluzern.ch/LIBER-LAG/lageps.htm#budapest
Collection security conference: http://www.bl.uk/aboutus/stratpolprog/ccare/events/liberconference/index.html
The future of the map library and map librarian: http://liber.gdc.2008.googlepages.com/home
Think tank on the book as an artifact: http://abm-centrum.se/ThinkTankPresentation.htm and report in LIBER Quarterly 17(2007)3-4, http://liber.library.uu.nl/publish/issues/2007-3_4/index.html?000216
Last but definitely not least I am pleased to announce that at its 2008 Annual Conference, the Board of LIBER has decided that LIBER Quarterly will henceforth be an open-access online journal, with paid printing-on-demand services to be made available by our publishers, Igitur, upon completion of each volume. This decision by the Board will certainly contribute to increasing LIBER Quarterly's readership and its value to the research libraries of Europe. To further facilitate online retrieval, abstracts and key words have been included as standard features of every LIBER Quarterly article.