A digital library "system" is composed of multiple hardware and softwarecomponents, including the following:

All of the above are interconnected through networks and gateway softwareand must be designed for scalability, interoperability and reliability. This isa daunting challenge, particularly since the technology in many of the areas ischanging rapidly. A system that uses one speech recognition system for inputmust be designed so that the recognizer can be replaced with another veryquickly. Otherwise, the digital library, potentially one of the most responsiveand useful systems in the world, can become fossilized.

Published: February 1999; WTECHyper-Librarian