On Jul 24, 2020, at 1:33 PM, Wang, Yongming <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> I'm excited to report that, with more than six month preparation, the
> special issue of the *International Journal of Librarianship* on Artificial
> Intelligence, Machine Learning, Data Science, and Libraries has just been
> published.
> In this issue, there are six articles relating to the above theme. Among
> them, one is the transcript of the inspiring speech at the Fantastic Future
> 2019: the 2nd International Conference on AI for Libraries, Archives, and
> Museums; one is on library policy and strategy in the AI movement; the
> third one is a concrete example of machine learning application in the
> library: using Natural Language Processing (NLP) Summarization technique to
> automatically generate summaries of the library special pamphlet collection
> for the MARC field. The other three articles deal with the topic of data
> science, Geographic Information System (GIS) in particular.
> If this is the first time you heard about AI and libraries, you may want to
> start with the editorial which briefly introduces the basic concept of AI
> and Machine Learning. If you have already started working with AI and
> Machine Learning, after you read this issue, you may get some better idea
> of why and how to get more involved in this fantastic AI movement. No
> matter whether we like it or not, AI movements will soon sweep over every
> corner of the world and all aspects of our lives. As information
> professionals and technology advocates and practitioners, let us embrace
> AI, Machine Learning, and Data Science with enthusiasm and total
> involvement.
> --
> Yongming Wang
> Editor, International Journal of Librarianship
> Systems Librarian
> The College of New Jersey
> New Jersey, USA

Yongming, thank you for bringing this to our attention. AI in libraries is a hot topic, for sure. I sincerely look forward to looking them over.

To anybody or everybody, let's suppose I wanted to read the whole issue of the journal described above. How many clicks does it require to get the content? In this case, the answer is 2 times the number of articles, or 3 times the number of articles if I go through the DOI. The answer is at least 18, if not 27. Furthermore, answer me this. What are the URLs pointing to the PDF versions of the articles described above?

"C'mon, Eric, don't be a jerk. Eighteen clicks is not so bad, especially when you get the content for free." And my reply is, "It is not really the number of clicks. Instead it is about conflation." The URLs to these things -- as well as in many many many things across the 'Net -- are conflated. The 'Net overflows with "not here but there" messages; the 'Net overflows with "dummies" as they used to be called in libraries. You know, those wooden blocks put on library shelves that say, "This book has been moved to the Reserve Book Room until further notice." The dummies were frustrating. 

I'm sorry, but the utter truth is links break. The problem only gets compounded when identifiers need to be resolved or splash ("landing") pages get put in the way. 

I assert few people will read all of the articles in any journal if they have to click through 18 different times in order to read/download the documents. I assert even fewer people will read the whole of a conference proceedings. Remember when conference proceedings where distributed in a single volume, and you could easily peruse through the whole thing? We can still have such a thing, if the links were managed differently.

In short, I wish sites wouldn't tease me all along the way, and don't make me hunt for the download link from the landing page. Give me the link to the thing, not a surrogate. "Save the time of the reader."

P.S. I "read" the issue, and I put the results here:

Eric Morgan
University of Notre Dame