Library Drops Dewey Decimal System

By Deane Barker on June 11, 2007

Gilbert library to be first to drop Dewey Decimal: The ghost of Melvil Dewey will haunt these people until they drop off the face of the Earth. They don’t know the powers they’re messing with here. May God have mercy on their disrespectful souls.

When the new Gilbert library opens next month, it will be the first public library in the nation whose entire collection will be categorized without the Dewey Decimal Classification System, Maricopa County librarians say.

Instead, tens of thousands of books in the Perry Branch library will be shelved by topic, similar to the way bookstores arrange books. The demise of the century-old Dewey Decimal system is overdue, county librarians say: It’s just too confusing for people to hunt down books using those long strings of numbers and letters.

The Dewey Decimal System is really the genesis of modern Information Architecture. It’s obviously moved beyond Dewey by now, but it stills owes Melvil quite a bit.

Via MetaFilter.

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Comments

  1. It?s just too confusing for people to hunt down books using those long strings of numbers and letters.

    Organizing them by topic will make finding a specific book easier? Am I missing something?

  2. “…..It?s just too confusing for people to hunt down books using those long strings of numbers and letters. “

    Insert “illiterate, uneducated People”.

  3. Don’t worry folks – I suspect this libraries holdings are so generalized and non-academic that it (sadly) makes sense to abandon ‘ole Melvin. When the larger Reference libraries convert, now that’s when civilization ends . . .

  4. Just putting up signs with what the “hundred” stands for with a few subdivisions, leaving off the digits, should be easy for us all. Melville won’t haunt us too doggedly…

  5. When I read the title, I thought the library was just switching to the (superior) Library of Congress classification system. This sounds like a dumbed-down version.

  6. How’s that working out for them??????? I don’t understand how it could work all that well myself. Put the yellow books together? Just kidding.

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