“According to a study by scientists at the University of Oxford, Artificial Intelligence will be better than humans at translating languages by 2024, writing school essays by 2026, selling goods by 2031, writing a bestselling book by 2049, and conducting surgeries by 2053”.
More than 5 years ago (Apr 2016), Steven Bell warned in the Library Journal that, "It is still early in the development of artificial intelligence but eventually it will change the work of librarians—or make it irrelevant. How likely is it that we will be replaced by bots in the future?"
Although blockchain technology has been around for only 13 years (invented in 2008), it has already created a huge impact on society. For bitcoin (the first major application of the blockchain technology) alone, its market capitalization has reached 600 billion U.S. dollars in June 2021. Which industries could blockchain disrupt? Professor Christian Catalini (Technological Innovation, Entrepreneurship, & Strategic Management at MIT Sloan) said: “All of them. The technology is what economists call a general purpose technology, and we will see many applications across different verticals.”
Drs. Sue Alman and Sandra Hirsh (2018) proposed that blockchain may be used in libraries “to build enhanced metadata systems and data centers, protect first sale rights, connect to a network of libraries/universities, support community-based collections, host digital peer-to-peer sharing, re-examine expectations for ways public libraries contribute to city service, and other possibilities”.
AI and blockchain will surely create a tremendous impact for researchers and professionals in information and library science (ILS). This summer institute and academic conference is an effort to help ILS researchers and professionals in Asia and beyond to embrace the opportunities afforded by these two latest technologies.
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