Majestic libraries of the world


Today’s replacement:

Less pretty, more portable, more practical.

Edit: Also will last just a few years. Which can be worked around by copying the content to new storage media as they appear, and keeping multiple backups, which also increases availability and therefore usefulness of the library.

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The Copenhagen University Library belongs on the list.


That Downtown Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County picture is amazing. I wonder what that volume of books weighs?

The library of the British Museum is pretty special, and I’m now ruing the fact that I never saw the library at the Glasgow School of Art (as designed by Mackintosh) before it burnt down last year :frowning:

My favorite started with the Science & Engineering Library at UC Santa Cruz:

The redwoods all around, floor-to-ceiling windows, the drink machine properly kicked that would reward the dull mind with fresh chemicals…what a place.

I can’t sit in that thing and study. And it doesn’t smell nearly as good.


Gonna donate a kidney and have a couple of those (RAID 1 mirror) stuck in the cavity… I will be the most majestic bloody library!

Wait a few years for biocompatible molecular electronics. More squishy, and could even be powered from blood glucose. (There are already such fuel cells.) Also, a brain-computer interface will be a must for this toy, though a well-engineered augmented-reality one may be sufficient for today.

Until then, go with conventional wearable tech. Current storage systems are too rigid, heavy, shock-sensitive and power-hungry to viably serve as an implant.

As of RAID1, this is an application with mostly immutable data (so the slowly writing shingle disks will do well). No need for a true RAID and its activity, weight, and power overheads; a better alternative may be a pair of disks with identical (perhaps occasionally offline-synced) content, with one disk implanted and the other one stored in a secure offsite way (or carried by somebody else, though the damage risk is then higher and using more disks on more people is advised). A much smaller RAID then can be used for the data that get modified more often. Or no RAID at all, and online syncing of the critical data (to a private cloud where you own the infrastructure, or maybe multiple well-encrypted copies to multiple third-party cloud vendors). Or both this and a small RAID for cases where the medium failure must not take the thing offline for even a while or where part replacement may take too much time.

Objection accepted. On the other end, you can’t so easily make a copy and stash it away in case somebody gets a good idea about library burning (again!). Nor can you pack it in a suitcase and move away.

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