Over the last several years, most university libraries have switched from a manual (card) catalog system to computerized library catalogs. The automated systems provide users with easily accessible and up-to-date information about the books available in these libraries. This has been further improved upon with the advent of local area networks, dialup modems, and wide area networks. Now many of us can check on our local library's holdings or that of a library halfway around the world!
Many, many institutions of higher learning have made their library catalogs available for searching by anyone on the Internet. They include Boston University, the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries (CARL), and London University King's College. invisible.xbm
To include a listing of some of the existing sites would not only be far too long for this document, it would soon be out of date. Instead, several lists are being maintained and are available either by mail or via FTP. Also, the Internet Resource Guide (IRG) also describes a few libraries that are accessible---see section Internet Resource Guide for further information.
Art St. George and Ron Larsen are maintaining a list of
Internet-accessible libraries and databases often referred to as "the
St. George directory." It began with only library catalogs but has
expanded to include sections on campus-wide information systems, and
even bulletin board systems that are not on the Internet. The library
catalog sections are divided into those that are free, those that
charge, and international (i.e. non-U.S.) catalogs; they are arranged
by state, province, or country within each section. There is also a
section giving dialup information for some of the library catalogs.
It's available for FTP (see section Anonymous FTP) on
Billy Barron, Systems Manager at the University of North Texas,
produces a directory as an aid to his user community. It complements
the St. George guide by providing a standard format for all systems
which lists the Internet address, login instructions, the system
vendor, and logoff information. The arrangement is alphabetic by
organization name. It's available for FTP on
For announcements of new libraries being available and discussion on
related topics, consult the Usenet newsgroup
Copyright © 1998, Software Engineering Laboratory
National Technical University of Athens