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Technology is a wonder; it can also be a horror," says Thomas J. Hennen Jr., whose eighth public library rankings article appeared in the October issue of American Libraries (p. 56-61). Just after the issue went to print, Hennen discovered an unfortunate error that invalidated the results of this edition of Hennen's American Public Library Ratings (HAPLR8).
"I referred to the wrong data set in my computer files. The result was republishing the last edition, scoring and ranking every library the same for the 2008 as for the 2006 edition," Hennen said. "I have now redone things, and I apologize to everyone for this terrible mistake."
AL is republishing the ranking tables here in order to correct the print record, and the new numbers are posted on the HAPLR website at www.haplr-index.com. They are also available in PDF format on the AL website. Libraries that use these ratings for publicity, to distribute to boards, or for other promotional purposes can download the corrected pages at www.ala.org/alonline.
So what has actually changed in the statewide outlook over the past four years? New Mexico and Wyoming have increased their standings the most (from 42nd to 25th for New Mexico) and from 23rd to 15th for Wyoming. Maine, Arizona, and Florida have fallen in the standings the most (from 26th to 33rd for Maine, from 18th to 23rd for Arizona, and. from 30th to 35th for Florida). Ohio, Utah, Oregon, Washington, and Indiana all maintained their relative spots in the top five. Mississippi, Louisiana, the District of Columbia, Alabama, and Tennessee took the bottom five spots for this year's rankings.
The top 10 libraries in each …