Charles Handy once wrote: "I found myself recently at a conference of librarians - all 800 of them. It was not the sort of occasion where you would expect to get a sudden glimpse of the future, but that was what happened."
This issue of Ariadne continues a wide ranging debate to do with the future nature of the information profession. Ray Lester's contribution emphasises the centrality of technology to what information workers will do in the future, and also to how institutions will organise and manage themselves. There are a number of issues to do with Ray's contribution which are worth exploring, not least whether or not we fully understand yet how technology is actually changing information services. Tony Kidd, and the cover feature by Jane Henley and Sarah Thompson, come back to a theme which has been aired before, and which will be crucial to the future of Ariadne itself, while Peter Brophy administers a dose of realism.
Mary Auckland offers her personal view of how both the new technology and traditional approaches can be combined, while Isobel Stark's interview with David VandeLinde reveals his pragmatic approach to some of the recommendations of Dearing.