3.137 laptops, cont. (29)

Sun, 18 Jun 89 20:16:59 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 3, No. 137. Sunday, 18 Jun 1989.

Date: Sat, 17 Jun 89 23:08:00 EDT
From: <BCJ@PSUVM.bitnet>
Subject: Re: 3.134 laptops, cont. (59)

The Folger Shakespeare Library has 2 large reading halls, connected but
remote. Those using typewriters (very few now) and computers occupy the
new wing; those writing with pencils use the 1920s Elizabethan hall. The
rattle of keyboards seems distant. Some libraries have cubicles. I worked
last week at the Houghton Library at Harvard, where 2 big projects of
some sort were being carried out -- not only was the rattle obtrusive, but
one fellow couldn't (wouldn't?) keep his computer from beeping. At the
Newberry, the glass wall dividing the special collections hall is
moderately successful in muting keyboard sounds.

I can testify that the "new noise" is noisier to those not producing it,
and hope that three things will develop: quieter keyboards (and user-friendly
beep suppressors), a more widely observed decorum among computer users in
quiet places, and more separate but equal spaces for new noise.

--- Kevin Berland (BCJ@PSUVM)