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The Universal Digital Library Essay

1383 words - 6 pages

Friedrich Nietzsche the famous German philosopher said regarding the human condition; “our treasure lies in the beehive of our knowledge. We are perpetually on the way thither, being by nature winged insects and honey gatherers of the mind” (p. 1). This quote is a perfect example of one of the fundamental human benefits of a universal digital library; the want of knowledge. Instead of having human knowledge spread scarcely across the globe in archaic buildings, we can build an advanced digital beehive of human knowledge, accessible by anyone. The universal digital library is a proposed plan to take all known texts and books and scan them, creating a digital copy that can be accessed by ...view middle of the document...

As new generations of computer savvy users enter the world, the feasibility of libraries is dwindling. For the Library generation the library’s sanctity must be preserved, for what would our culture be without this temple of knowledge and reason. Would not having a physical place for learning breed a culture of ignorance and evil? To debunk this we will look at a short argument by Bertrand Russel.
The evils of the world are due to moral defects quite as to lack of intelligence. But the human race has not hitherto discovered any method of eradicating moral defects… intelligence, on the contrary, is easily improved by methods known to every competent educator. Therefore, until some method of teaching virtue has been discovered, progress will have to be sought by improvement of intelligence rather than of morals. (p. 127)
It is clear that when the universal library is created it will bring knowledge to hundreds of millions of people. It does not matter that this knowledge is electronic and does not take up physical space like a library. For the worth of knowledge is not physical, it is how it effects it’s reader. Whether the reader is in a library or sitting in front of a screen the value of that knowledge remains the same.
The effects of a universal digital library on the third world would be monumental. It would provide texts previously inaccessible to them. The worth of this knowledge to the third world is priceless, for they do not have libraries like the first world. They do not have the infrastructure or the currency to afford public libraries like those taken for granted in North America. So as Africa, Latin America, Asia, and the Middle East become increasingly internet connected, it will open up a huge wealth of knowledge for those who could not access such wealth before. Africa internet usage has increased 2527.4% from 2000-2011 while the Middle East’s internet usage has increased by 1987.0% during the same time frame. With increasing technology and affordability of broadband in these countries, the number of people who can connect to the internet shall surely rise. These regions are home to some of the poorest people in the world. These people have no opportunity to obtain an education, but as the internet becomes more and more widespread, it has the ability to be used as an effective teaching tool. With the universal digital library as a resource third world people can acquire the knowledge and critical thinking to improve their lives. Humanity is separated from the rest of the animal kingdom because we have the ability to improve ourselves. With technology ever advancing and its use spreading across the globe humanity has the tools to create an information utopia, and with the information people will have the ability to improve their lives.
The universal digital library is a combination of new and old technology. It has the ability to transform societies and serve a purpose for all mankind. This...

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