Friday, November 9, 2007

www.sfpl.org

Bad URL

Do libraries still exist? Apparently. But with an URL like this you'd hardly be able to find the San Francisco Public Library online (which maybe is the point as they want to get you in the door.) all lower case and uio (using initials only) is not a best practice. And burying the URL at the bottom of a street banner is just pointless... 1) Who's going to see that? 2) Who's going to remember that? 3) Why would I visit a library site anyway... isn't that what Google is for?

6 comments:

Joe said...

Isn't the url sfpl.org as opposed to sfpl.com?

Aaron Goldman said...

Good cath Joe! Fixed.

Paul said...

Love your site -- fun and sensible, all at the same time. To rebut your "who uses a library Web site" query - I do, almost every day. As a resident of Denver, purveyor of one of the greatest public library systems in the country, I'm always reserving books on http://denverlibrary.org. It's a very clean system, highly interactive and intuitive, and a whole lot easier on my wallet than buying books I don't want to read more than once.

Aaron Goldman said...

Thanks Paul. Great to hear there are some libraries out there innovating on the Web. I still have doubts about the "shelf life" of libraries though. What will happen once Google has indexed every book in print cover to cover?

Anonymous said...

Dude, wake up and get a library card. What gated community do you live in? Remember those poor huddled masses yearning to breathe free? They are assembling at libraries, getting their Spanish language childrens' books, free DVDs and books on tape, searching for jobs on free high speed, taking free classes, and using computers they don't have topurchase or maintain. I heard a librarian from Santa Clara deliver a speech at a conference here in the Midwest. That areas sounds like Richistan living with Crumbistan. Libraries in silicon valley are struggling with funding while they serve immigrants speaking over 20 languages.
What will the existance of google in the ether do to help the great unwashed public? What shit about google being an information cure-all.

Aaron Goldman said...

Anonymous - point taken. Libraries are definitely still providing utility to the community and we're a long ways away from them becoming obselete. That said, every day Google and Microsoft are getting closer to offering free computers and free wifi. And they are growing their international and multi-lingual capabilities. I'm not saying libraries are finished. I just think the model is outdated. They can't survive as glorified Internet cafes. And they can't (and shouldn't) compete with schools as gov't-funded sources of education.