RLI 287  4 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC 2015 schemes” even as publishers began to look to new online sales of information services for profits.5 In 1986 Cummings saw the advantages of preparing and storing information electronically to increase access, availability, and preservation, although this was before consumer-based challenges appeared such as media evolution and the rapid obsolescence of formats (floppy disks, video tapes, CD-ROMs).6 By 1988, although Lewis was looking at the library, his comments reflect changes needed in the system of scholarly communication as the “power of new media and the failings of the old system [of print publishing] are driving scholarly institutions toward change.”7 Things were beginning to change, slowly, and the advent of the Internet created greater disruption of both scholarly communications (including all forms of publishing) as well as research libraries. Decades before the Internet was created, librarians and others began to envision networked texts, data, and scholarship that would propel research in the future—the activity that became the conceptual basis for the World Wide Web. Before J. C. R. Licklider of MIT published his report outlining such a vision, Libraries of the Future, he described how data, programs, and information might be accessed by people using computers from anywhere in the world he called this concept a “Galactic Network” in 1962.8 The first steps to creating this global network, what would become the Internet, began with DARPA and the ARPANET in 1969. By the mid-1980s it was common for students in the sciences and engineering to dial-in to their institutional mainframes and libraries. By the end of the 1980s, network providers including America Online, CompuServe, UUNet, and PSInet, among others, provided access to the growing free and commercial network of servers. The text-based Internet with its electronic billboards, chat relays, and early use-nets all suggested that the potential Lewis had described as the future digital library was within reach and most university students were now expected to own and use computers in their research and scholarship. 1992 is marked by many as the point at which the World Wide Web became open to the public thanks to the invention of Mosaic, the precursor to Netscape Navigator, a graphical user interface that could present the contents (initially limited to text and images) of these early websites— the first web browser. 1992 also marked the publication of an influential book on the need to transform how the library delivered its services at the dawn of the digital age and of a study commissioned by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation on the changing and possibly troubled economics of the research library. Michael Buckland’s Redesigning Library Services: A Manifesto articulated how library services—providing access to knowledge—needed to be considered in terms of the paper library, automated library (where Cummings and Lewis had placed their focus), and the fast-growing electronic library. Even though Buckland’s vision did not immediately integrate with the emerging World Wide Web, it did suggest how networked data might help libraries take advantage of extended, interconnected catalogs, bibliographies, and digital texts. The report commissioned by the Mellon Foundation, University Libraries and Scholarly Communication, emphasizes this moment of flux by suggesting that the entire system of scholarly communication was about to change in part because it was no longer sustainable in its present form. The roots of this study lay in the ARL Serials Prices Project (1989), the findings of which so concerned the Mellon Foundation that it launched its own multi-year study9 to better understand major trends in research library spending, including the portion spent on journal subscriptions versus book purchases, the share for new acquisitions versus the cost to preserve and catalog holdings, and to consider how new technology had
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