Monday, May 22, 2006

The Information Commons and the Apple Store

An article in the New York Times (Friday’s business section) about Apple computer’s new store in the glass cube opening on Fifth Avenue includes a quote from an analyst at Forrester Research, “The Apple Stores are selling digital experiences, not products. Its stores can be seen as solutions boutiques.” He points out that the stores are organized around different uses of technology: organizing music, editing digital photos or movies, creating podcasts and blogs….” If you saw the presentation by Lisa Santucci about the information commons at Miami University, they have a similar organization focused on creating the end product. She opened her presentation by saying that having an information commons means that the question “How are you going to use this information?” becomes part of the reference interview. Their philosophy is that the commons is an extension of the library’s knowledge management function. They even call it the Center for Information Management and staff it with librarians from all the campus libraries.

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