What are Digital Libraries and How they Aid Research?


We live in the digital age. Most conventional methods of operation in some capacity being digitized or automated. The way forward is technology and the internet. So, from a literary standpoint, the obvious way forward is a digital library.

The question arises, what are digital libraries?

Simply put, a digital library is an organized electronic library available on a network. There are many versions available. However, the most convenient is the online format. Online digital libraries are convenient, easy to use and they provide all your information in one easy to access location.

I prefer books, why should I go digital?

While one can argue that the look and feel of books are irreplaceable, books are getting costlier. Most libraries have reduced resources for acquisition, year by year. The number of publications that are putting out paper books has decreased, and more publications are shifting to the digital format.

What if I have the resources and I want to stick to paper?

Paper has one fundamental flaw; its text cannot change once it is acquired. The biggest drawback of traditional publishing is if you need to make a change. All the books need reprinting. Digital libraries afford you the luxury of making changes without hassles.


How often can I update my library if I go digital?

Digital libraries can be updated daily. Information can be added or redacted easily as there is no physical restriction like there is on paper. An added benefit is that the changes would go live almost instantaneously, hence corrections would be noticed immediately.

The general restrictions that come with paper or books are a thing of that past. One does need to worry about losing copies or paper wastage. The acquisition costs are also far lesser than traditional libraries, this allows for acquisition resources to be utilized to their utmost potential.


How do Digital libraries help researchers?

Digital libraries support researchers by providing access to multiple sources of research literature. It also spares them the trouble of having to search multiple sources. It allows researchers access to the most current data to aid them in their research. The easy updating of digital libraries also ensures that the data they contain, stay relevant as time progresses.

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