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Peter Sandy looks at how the library has always been a central feature of academic institutions. A storehouse of knowledge, a place to access information, a place to think, a place to meet people, a fixed point at the heart of a campus - it serves all these practical functions.
The Open University's new Pounds 16.2 million Jenny Lee Library being built at the heart of the Milton Keynes campus is a manifestation of its Information for All approach. The digital technology in the library signals that the modem has largely replaced the postman for students and staff, but the architecture and technology reveals more about the OU and the times we live in than the computers inside.