Why Indiana Jones & I still use the Library

“Ninety percent of an archaeologist’s time is spent in the library. Myths can only be taken at face value. We do not follow maps to buried treasures and X never ever marks the spot.” -Indiana Jones, The Last Crusade

I can feel the eye rolls like an earthquake, but hear me out. It may seem like a waste of time getting up, driving to the library, and hoping they have the information you want. It isn’t and let me tell you why.

Lets say you are sitting at your computer, ready to research your book data, and you need to know everything about horses. Here’s how it’s going to play out.

  • Google Search: Horse
  • Results: That’s a ton of horses. Which one do you pick?
  • Select images: Endlessly scroll till you see a picture of the type of horse in your head.
  • Google Search: Paint horse.
  • Results: Sift through all the ads, toss out the irrelevant sites, and hope the few blog posts you found by avid horse owners hold up. Wikipeida is not a reliable source, you know that.
  • Ting: Your social media is calling and you check it.

And that’s it for the night because you didn’t make it back to your research. Now let’s hit replay and use the library.

  • Library Online Catalog: Horses
  • Filter Results: Academic
  • Place Hold: Any book you want on the online catalogue can be reserved with your library card and shipped to your local library for free.
  • Drive to Library: Pick up your books on hold.
  • Browse Library: You find a couple other books in the biology section and it prompts you to look into Native American uses of Paint Horses.
  • Use Library Computer: Here’s the thing, the library limits you to one hour of use so you have to be fast. Plus, it has none of your social media to distract you- Score!
  • Place hold on additional research items. You can pick those up when you return the ones you just checked out.

How awesome is that? Sure you can do research online and there are some great sites out there. But it takes sifting in an environment that is full of distractions. Make sure the library is on your research itinerary.

 

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