Ambitious project attempting to create a universal repository of all the world’s recorded knowledge. It was developed at the turn of the 20th century by Belgian lawyers and bibliographers Paul Otlet and Henri La Fontaine. The Mundaneum institution aimed to classify knowledge according to a system called the Universal Decimal Classification. In 1895, Otlet and La Fontaine established the International Institute of Bibliography and announced plans to create a Universal Bibliographic Repertory that would serve as a global clearinghouse for bibliographical data. The collection grew rapidly and included books, photographs, pamphlets, reports, and newspaper articles. To access the information, researchers could enquire via mail or telegraph and Mundaneum staff members would in turn attempt to fulfill the query by returning copies of entries in the card catalog. By 1927, the Universal Bibliographic Catalog had grown to 13 million index cards. It peaked in 1934 at 15.6 million. Otlet’s related writings on information science anticipated the advent of the World Wide Web, and the Mundaneum itself is considered by some to be the precursor of the Internet.