Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Our Brains Are Different

Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Our Brains Are Different

Article excerpt

I'll bet that most of you have funny stories that illustrate the fact that you don't think like everyone else does. I'm sure I'm not the only one who's been ridiculed for alphabetizing all my record albums and CDs. Friends have also been aghast when they noticed that the items on my home book-shelves are arranged by topic--and then chronologically within each topic. Most people organize a little more loosely than we do. Some never organize at all! (We know how we feel about them.)

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Let's face it--librarians have different brains than most other people do. And there's nothing wrong with that! But you do have to keep that concept "in mind" when you communicate with people outside the profession.

One instance where the different-brain syndrome really comes to light is when librarians organize things that others need to find. If all the patrons reasoned the way we do, then searching for anything would be intuitive. But alas, they don't. This mattered less back in the "gatekeeper" days when patrons told the librarian what they needed, and she (or he) found and delivered it. …

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