B  U  L  L  E  T  I  N

of the American Society for Information Science and Technology       Vol. 31, No. 1    October/November 2004

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From the Editor's Desktop
by Irene L. Travis

As their environment is revolutionized by technology, libraries seek to expand their services and their relevance. This issue is about various aspects of their effort. Our primary focus, with the guidance of Guest Editor Amos Lakos, is on library portals as a solution to some of these problems. The authors review the goals of portals, their environment and their relationships to users as well as surveying issues related to technology and standards. Most papers in this section are based on presentations at a symposium on library portals, sponsored by ALA's Library Information and Technology Association (LITA), held in conjunction with the most recent ALA annual conference.

A variation on this theme occurs in a paper from Senegal submitted last year for the ASIS&T SIG/III International Paper Competition, included in this issue although outside the library portals special section. The technology discussed is more modest, but steps to improve service to users and increase the utilization of resources address the same basic problems. 

In his information architecture (IA) column Andrew Dillon again reflects on the nature of the field, in this instance by considering whether there are distinctions among the content of the various lists he subscribes to that are of interest in the fields of IA, human-computer interaction and usability.

Finally, Sam Hastings, in her final column as ASIS&T president, reports on the August meeting of the Board of Directors at which the Board made a number of important decisions to cope with the challenges of what continues to be a difficult environment for professional associations.

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