The constant development of electronics, computer sciences and telecommunications has resulted in the creation of virtual worlds. Today's information technology solutions make it possible for libraries to provide traditional library services outside the library building and regardless of opening hours. It is hard to foresee how this trend will affect the mission and tasks of libraries in the future. In an extreme sense, the importance of traditional libraries might diminish. But in another context, the new ICT-supported library services can lead to the increase of the prestige of libraries. The new technologies enable libraries to offer high-level services, to satisfy 21st century user needs as well as to attract new user groups to the world of library and information services. Through the application of ICT and web-supported tools, the scope of library services has effectively been widened and enhanced, both in quality and quantity. Born as a response of libraries to contemporary user needs, virtual libraries are more than a collection of digital documents. They effectively provide the virtual model of a real library. The latest 3D technology applications make it possible for anyone to browse through a virtual library via the Internet. One example of the web-based interactive 3D technologies is X3D, a license-free XML-based open standard, with the help of which anyone can build a virtual library according to his or her ideas and needs.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.