Download e-book for iPad: Too Much to Know: Managing Scholarly Information before the by Ann M. Blair

By Ann M. Blair

ISBN-10: 0300112513

ISBN-13: 9780300112511

The flood of data delivered to us via advancing expertise is usually followed by way of a distressing feel of “information overload,” but this event isn't specific to trendy instances. actually, says Ann M. Blair during this exciting ebook, the discovery of the printing press and the resultant abundance of books provoked 16th- and seventeenth-century ecu students to sign in proceedings similar to our own. Blair examines tools of knowledge administration in historic and medieval Europe in addition to the Islamic international and China, then focuses specific consciousness at the association, composition, and reception of Latin reference books in print in early glossy Europe. She explores intimately the subtle and infrequently idiosyncratic concepts that students and readers constructed in an period of recent know-how and exploding info.

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Sample text

Reach as one would like. This trade-off is at the heart of the old economics of information (see Figure 3-1). Communicating rich information has required proximity (people working in the same physical location) or dedicated channels (such as proprietary computer networks, retail stores, or a sales force). The costs or physical constraints of these channels, however, have limited the number of people who can access the information. Conversely, communicating information to a large audience has required compromises in the quality of that information.

But hardly anybody pays even that: the vast majority of copies are given away to promote the sale of computers and peripherals. 50 per copy, the CD-ROM as freebie makes good economic sense. The marginal cost of Britannica, in contrast, is about $250 for production plus about $500 to $600 for the salesperson's commission. Judging from their inaction, Britannica's executives at first seemed to have viewed the CD-ROM encyclopedia as an irrelevance: a child's toy, one step above video games. This perception was entirely reasonable.

Readers looking for Ten Rules for Succeeding in the Information Economy will be disappointed: we believe with some passion that the task of rethinking strategy is specific to each business and cannot be short-circuited by simplistic formulas. Moreover, we describe one logic, not all logics. Blanket pronouncements require a comprehensiveness and completeness of understanding beyond our modest talents. Acknowledgments Our greatest debt must go unrecognized: it is to the individual clients with whom and for whom we developed these ideas and worked through their implementation.

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Too Much to Know: Managing Scholarly Information before the Modern Age by Ann M. Blair

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