The New York Times wrote a short piece on the controversial topic of storage at the New York Public Library. The thought must have come to mind to anybody visiting the NYPL's main branch: Just how many books can the NYPL hold? After all, it is the 2nd largest public library in the United States (2nd only to the Library of Congress). With numbers ranging dramatically over the years, it's always been a tough number to pinpoint. Odd, I suppose, since every single book and article in the library is supposed to be cataloged and numbers for checkout or perusal.
Now, the NYPL is saying their catalog comes out to about 2.5 million books. Despite some controversy, that number came about exactly how I thought it should -- through a computer that catalogs every barcode and item in the library system. Why it was so difficult to publically come out with that number previous is beyond me.