The future of digital repositories?

An article by D’Arcy Norman on the dismantling of CAREO, U Calgary’s digital repository.

CAREO was important, back in 2001-2004, as a prototype. As a sandbox for trying out some of these concepts. As a place to easily host metadata and content and try the repository model. From that perspective, I think it was a huge success. Without CAREO, I would likely still be saying that we need centralized institutional repositories to tightly manage resources.

But, because of CAREO, I now know that we don’t need repositories at the institutional level. Personal repositories are much more powerful, effective, and manageable. They’re called blogs, maybe you’ve heard of them? And small pieces, loosely joined. Want to manage photos online? Use Flickr. Videos? Use YouTube/GoogleVideo/etc… We don’t need a monolithic institutional repository.

Sure, we were naive, but we meant well. And now, hopefully, people will learn from our successes, failures, and mistakes, and not be doomed to repeat them.

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