Two hours at the museum

Here at the University of Leicester, we have a beautiful museum. It has brand new wood panelling, glass, artworks on the walls, helpful, friendly staff, computer terminals to help with interpreting the exhibits, spaces to sit and think, work, take stock.

Yes, it’s truly lovely. And in some ways, I enjoyed my two hours there this morning.

Unfortunately, in terms of productivity, a museum full of fifteenth Century technology is really not ideal. If the information in those museum pieces had been stored with twenty-first Century technology, I would have found what I wanted in two minutes, instead of two hours, and could have gotten on with something more useful.

I’m talking, of course, about the library – and the books therein. An anachronistic throw-back to the days when part of the point of academia was to limit access to knowledge.

Books are a lovely technology for reading a novel by the pool in Ibiza.

I’m trying to get some work done.

Paul Rudman


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