Posts in: organisational culture

Questions, questions …

Years ago, I sat in a meeting of Aslib, the national body for specialist librarians and information bureaux. We were gathered at the cusp of the IT revolution: mobile phones were making their clunking first appearance, and ‘portable computers’ were triggering lumbago in middle-aged men in selected pockets of the South-East. One of the verdicts of the assembled gathering was that, in the future, the advantage would lie with the people who knew where to find the information rather than the people who knew it. Faced with the information equivalent of gold doubloons buried on an immense sandy beach, the coin hunters with the metal detectors would be an odds-on bet compared with the pebble turners and the sieve-sifters. But is that how our questioning skills have actually developed? Have we all become expert data miners, casually parsing complex Algebraic formulations to retrieve exactly the right article on deciphering the papyrus scrolls of the Etruscans? Have we buffalo.

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