The workshop is the synergy of two efforts: First, it makes the case for the institution of public library and its principle of universal access to knowledge. Second, it is an exploration and development of distributed Internet infrastructure for amateur librarians.
A public library is one of those almost invisible infrastructures that we start to notice only once they go extinct. Yet, it is necessary to see public libraries as part of a global infrastructure of universal access to knowledge.
The dream of a catalogue of the world – a universal access to all available knowledge for every member of society – became realizable through the global spread of the Internet. But is it merely a question of the meeting of curves on a graph: the point at which the line of global distribution of personal computers meets that of the critical mass of people with access to the Internet?