Friday, June 07, 2002


This Web log can be posted to by more than one person. If there is someone else out there interested in cataloging who would like to contribute just let me know and I can authorize you to post as well.

Not Cataloging

"Six Science Publishers Create New Web Font Set:
The STIX Project (

Melville, NY, June 10, 2002 - After years of planning, a group of scientific publishers today formally announced the Scientific and Technical Information Exchange (STIX) font creation project and the launch of the STIX web site. The STIX publishers aim to develop a comprehensive set of fonts for mathematics and other special characters used in Scientific, Technical, and Medical publishing. The web site provides information for potential users within the scientific and publishing communities, and a special area for software developers who may want to incorporate support for the STIX Fonts into their products.

Six publishers - the American Chemical Society (ACS), the American Institute of Physics (AIP), the American Mathematical Society (AMS), the American Physical Society (APS), Elsevier Science, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) -- came together to design, fund and manage the STIX project. They have awarded the font development contract to a respected font development company, which has begun the process of designing and delivering nearly eight thousand characters/glyphs. The design submissions of the various character sets are currently being evaluated by a Technical Review Committee consisting of representatives of the six participating publishers.

There is currently a clear need for a new font set for mathematical and other scientific symbols, especially in the area of on-screen display in electronic publishing. Today, scientists must assemble scientific symbols and special characters from a variety of fonts, many of which may vary in character style, positioning, or size. The resulting documents typically have an unsatisfactory, jumbled appearance. Even more importantly, when posted to a web site, these documents may not be properly rendered unless the viewers of the document have all of the same specialized fonts available on the computer workstations they are using. This new set of fonts, known as the STIX Fonts, will solve both of these problems, serving the scientific and engineering community in the process from manuscript creation all the way through to final publication, both in electronic and print formats. It will unify support for all special symbols and alphabets into a single, comprehensive font set.

The STIX fonts will be made available, under royalty-free license, to anyone, including publishers, software developers, scientists, students and the general public. Target for completion of the project is the Fall of 2003.

By making the fonts freely available, the STIX project hopes to encourage the development of applications that make use of these fonts. In particular the STIX project will create a TEX implementation that TEX users can install and configure with minimal effort. TEX is a computer language designed for typesetting, with particular application to mathematics and other technical material.

The STIX mission will be fully realized when:

  • Fully hinted PostScript Type 1 and OpenType font sets have been created.
  • All characters/glyphs have been incorporated into Unicode representation or comparable representation and browsers include program logic to fully utilize the STIX font set in the electronic representation of scholarly scientific documents.

    For more information visit the STIX Fonts web site

    For the STIX Fonts project:
    T.C. Ingoldsby (Chairman)
    American Institute of Physics
    2 Huntington Quadrangle, Suite 1NO1
    Melville, NY 11747-4502
    Phone: +1 516 576 2265
    Fax: +1 516 576 2327

  • CONSER Task Group on FRBR and Continuing Resources

    "The FRBR provides great hope for the long-standing problem of multiple versions, an issue particularly problematic for serials and other continuing resources. Thus, it is extremely important that the complexities and requirements of continuing resources be fully incorporated into any solutions that are developed based on FRBR. With that in mind, a CONSER task force is being established to provide ongoing comment and analysis on the uses of FRBR for continuing resources.


  • Consider the entities, attributes and relationships as described in the FRBR and their application to serials and other continuing resources.
  • Provide serial examples for the paper "Displays for Multiple Versions from MARC 21 and FRBR"
  • Evaluate reports of the JSC Format Variation Working Group and provide feedback relating to continuing resources
  • Monitor activities regarding the use of FRBR and provide reports, analysis, feedback, as deemed appropriate."
  • Conferences

    SLA and ALA are both about to happen. I'll miss SLA, some very good and interesting people and great parties. PAM (Physics Astronomy Math) folks are a wonderful group. Maybe next year. I just couldn't find the time. Coming up I have some vacation time. Then there is NACO training, the Summer Institute for Distance Learning Librarians, the LITA Forum here in Houston and just maybe OLAC. Enjoy the big conventions. Maybe I'll get to see some of you at the smaller ones.

    MARC21 Codes

    Additions to the MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions

    Network Development and MARC Standards Office Library of Congress
    The following 12 codes have been recently approved for use in MARC 21 records. They include 2 category code source codes, 3 classification scheme source codes, and 6 subject source codes, and 1 name source code. These new codes have been added to the online "MARC Codes Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions" but should not be used in exchange records until after July 30, 2002. This 60-day waiting period is required to provide MARC 21 implementers with time to include newly defined codes in any validation tables they may apply to the MARC fields where these codes are used.
    MARC Category Code Source Codes

    agricola - AGRICOLA subject category codes (subfield $2 in Bibliographic field 072) [use after 07-30-2002]

    fiaf - Classification scheme for literature on film and television (subfield $2 in Bibliographic field 072) [use after 07-30-2002]
    MARC Classification Scheme Sources

    agricola - AGRICOLA subject category codes (subfield $2 in Bibliographic field 084 and Bibliographic/Holdings field 852)[use after 07-30-2002]

    agrissc - AGRIS: subject category codes (subfield $2 in Bibliographic field 084 and Bibliographic/Holdings field 852)[use after 07-30-2002]

    fiaf - Classification scheme for literature on film and television (subfield $2 in Bibliographic field 084 and Bibliographic/Holdings field 852)[use after 07-30-2002]
    MARC Term, Name, Title Sources

    albt - Arbetslivsbibliotekets tesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    eclas - ECLAS thesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    ncjt - National criminal justice thesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    nznb - New Zealand national bibliography (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information fields 600-651, 655-658 subfield $2 in Authorities fields 700-751 and subfield $f in field 040) [use after 07-30-2002]

    prvt - Patent- och registreringsverket tesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    sfit - Svenska filminstitutets tesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    sot - Schools online thesaurus (subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in fields 600-651) [use after 07-30-2002]

    Thursday, June 06, 2002

    NISO Standards for Comment

    These are some of the NISO standards that are currently available for comment.

    ANSI/NISO/ISO 12083 - 1995 Electronic Manuscript Preparation and Markup
    Abstract: In complete conformance with ISO 8879 (SGML - Standard Generalized Markup Language), 12083 provides a toolkit for developing customized SGML applications. Four Document Type Definitions are specified for books, serials, articles, and mathematics. Instructions for the preparation of text for the near automatic conversion to grade-2 braille and for publication in large-print and computer voice editions are included.

    ANSI/NISO Z39.14 - 1997 Guidelines for Abstracts
    Abstract: This standard helps authors and editors prepare useful abstracts by describing the components of an abstract and the appropriate styles and formats. Numerous examples illustrate the instructions presented in the standard and clarify how to handle special cases.

    ANSI/NISO Z39.23 - 1997 Standard Technical Report Number Format and Creation
    Abstract: Defines a unique numbering system that improves access to the wealth of scientific and technical reports issued by the government and private organizations. The STRN is an alphanumeric code with a maximum length of 34; for international application an optional country code can be added. The standard explains how and where the code should be assigned and used. A central authority to coordinate and monitor assignments of the code is designated.

    ANSI/NISO Z39.26 - 1997 Micropublishing Product Information
    Abstract: Content guidelines are given for advertising materials used to describe micropublications intended for long-term retention and use. Vendor Note: This standard details the information which publishers should incorporate in advertising materials for micropublications so users will have a full description of the product. This revision now includes a section on guarantees and the publisher's policy on replacement of defective portions of the micropublication.

    ANSI/NISO Z39.32 - 1996 Information on Microfiche Headers
    Equivalent international standard: ISO 5123
    Abstract: Defines the specific eye-legible information that should appear on the limited space available on microfiche so the fiche can be correctly identified and properly filed.The standard describes where to place the data, the order of the information, and a recommended type size and contrast to maximize readability. Many examples show how to use the standard.

    ANSI/NISO Z39.41 - 1998 Printed Information on Spines
    Abstract: Describes how information is best presented on the spines of books or the containers that contain an information product, such as a CD-ROM, a microform, a disk, videotape or an audiotape. Explains what information to include and how to arrange it for maximum clarity. Using this standard will help your users identify your product and use it!

    ANSI/NISO Z39.48 - 1992(R1997) Permanence of Paper for Publications and Documents in Libraries and Archives
    Equivalent international standard: ISO 9706
    Abstract: Publishers and paper manufacturers, take note! This standard sets the basic criteria for coated and uncoated papers that will last several hundred years under normal use. It covers ph value, tear resistance, alkaline reserve and lignin threshold. Recycled papers will meet the criteria specified. This revision to the original 1984 standard is based on testing conducted by the Institute of Paper Science and Technology and contributions from paper makers, publishers, printers, and the preservation community.

    Wednesday, June 05, 2002

    MARC21 & XML

    Library of Congress announces standard MARCXML schema

    The Library of Congress Network Development and MARC Standards Office announces completion of a schema for MARC 21 records in an XML structure for use in communicating MARC 21 records. This schema was developed in collaboration with OCLC and RLG and reviewed by the National Library of Canada and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), after a survey of schemas in use in various projects. Many schemas have taken the "slim" approach but all vary slightly. This schema will be maintained by the Library of Congress as will software that enables lossless conversion to and from MARC 21 records in the ISO 2709 structure. As illustrated in the introductory information on the web site, the Library of Congress will develop and provide, downloadable from the MARCXML web site, tools for various transformations and for record validations. A single schema serves all the five MARC 21 formats.

    By collaboratively developing a communications schema, the Library of Congress encourages the standardization of MARC 21 exchange records in the XML environment, recognizing that MARC 21 records inside systems will continue to use different record configurations, tailored to the characteristics of the system. Provision of the tools for transformations to and from other metadata approaches, such as Dublin Core and the Metadata Object Description Schema (MODS), will help to standardize derivative metadata records also. (MODS is a new schema for a bibliographic element set that is a subset of MARC expressed in XML with language-based rather than numeric tags.) The tools take the mappings between MARC and other metadata sets, that have been maintained on the MARC web site, to an operational level.

    One project interested in a standard, lossless MARCXML schema is the Open Archive Initiative (OAI) which found it necessary to draft a schema in the absence of an official one. The Library of Congress worked with the OAI to provide a transformation from the original oai_marc schema to this one so the Initiative can take advantage of a schema that is maintained by the MARC 21 maintenance agency and in broad use. The transformation is available from the MARCXML web site.

    With the slim approach, schema-driven validation is only possible at the highest structural level. The Network Development and MARC Standards Office will therefore maintain downloadable tag, subfield, and value validation software on the web site that will enable users to build validation programs for their needs. Use of these standard validations represent another attempt to assure standardization of records to support effective record interchange.

    The Library has maintained two SGML DTDs (for Bibliographic-type and Authority-type records) since 1996, which take a different approach to the data elements in MARC - an approach that enables validation of data through the DTD itself but requires a very large DTD and DTD maintenance. The Bibliographic-type DTD was converted to an XML DTD in 2000. These DTDs have been effectively used by some agencies (including the Library of Congress), primarily for internal processes, therefore transformations between them and the new slim MARCXML schema are being provided. Maintenance techniques and/or possible revision of the XML DTDs are under consideration.

    For questions or comments please email the Office at

    Cataloging in the Real World

    This in press article provides some interesting reading. Please, abide by his request to access the paper in off hours, he has already received a warning from his ISP.

    I have some questions on why some of these non-standard practices exist. Why don't the institutions using their own subject headings submit them to SACO? Or at least place them in a 653 field? Why would anyone buy a system that could not access the full MARC record? My system is an inexpensive one for the PC. It is far from perfect, in display there are problems, but I can at least create and edit the full record. Authority records or editing authority records would solve some of the problems. Do some systems not use MARC authority records, or are they too hard to acquire so institutions just don't bother?

    "The following message is regarding an article that has been submitted for publication to Library Resources and Technical Services. I would ask that anyone who is a potential reviewer for LRTS read no further.

    As you know back in February I posted a message asking for your local practices that break cataloging standards, broadly defined as AACR2, classification systems, encoding standards, etc. The response was overwhelming, 94 original responses came back and I couldn't have been happier.

    You'll all be glad to know that I have submitted a draft of an article discussing the results of this survey to Library Resources and Technical Services for publication. The current title is "Breaking the Law: a survey of non-standard cataloging practices."

    This research could not have been done without the support and input from Autocat, and I wanted to thank you all. A static working draft of the article is available on my website.

    WARNING: Please don't all go visit the site at once, because my ISP only allows a limited amount of data transfer per hour. If you do want to read the article, please bookmark the address above, and visit either in a few days or during an evening hour. I would hate to have you get frustrated by not being able to access the article, and not take the time to read it.

    Thank you.

    Eric S. Riley Graduate Student (for one more week!)
    Information School University of Washington, Seattle"

    Tuesday, June 04, 2002


    Another metadata scheme for the visual arts community is the Visual Resources Association, VRA Core Categories, now in version 3. "The VRA Core Categories, Version 3.0 consist of a single element set that can be applied as many times as necessary to create records to describe works of visual culture as well as the images that document them."

    MARC Geographic Codes

    Addition to the MARC Country and Geographic Area Code Lists for Aruba, Bonaire and East Timor
    Network Development and MARC Standards Office

    As the result of East Timor's gaining its independence from Indonesia in May 2002, new country and geographic area codes are being defined for use in MARC records.

    The new codes for East Timor are:
    em (Country code)
    a-em (Geographic area code)

    The Netherlands Antilles is an internally self-governing and integral part of the Netherlands. It consists of the islands of Bonaire, Curacao, Saba, Saint Eustatius and the southern half of the island of Saint Martin. Aruba was part of the Netherlands Antilles until it seceded in 1986 to become a separate, autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Therefore, a new geographic area code is being defined for Aruba. Moreover, because all of the separate islands of the Netherlands Antilles have their geographic area codes, a geographic area code is being defined for Bonaire for use in MARC records.

    The new code for Aruba is:
    nwaw (Geographic area code)

    The new code for Bonaire is:
    nwbn (Geographic area code)

    Subscribers can anticipate receiving MARC records reflecting these changes in all distribution services not earlier than September 3, 2002. Questions regarding the country and geographic area codes should be directed to:

    Cataloging Policy and Support Office
    Library of Congress
    Washington, DC 20540-4305
    (202) 707-4380
    June 3, 2002

    Professional Reading

    I'm currently reading Cataloging the Web : metadata, AACR and MARC21. It is a collection of papers based on the ALCTS Institutes. The meetings were very informative, I'm hoping for the same from the book.

    Spirit Writing

    A while back on LiveJournal there was a thread about mediums who publish books under the names of the dead. The correct AACR rule is cited. However, there are some other considerations raised that merit thought.

    Shameless Plug

    My wife, Cora, has a contra dance band, Permanent Wave. The band's CD is available for purchase at Contracopia and you can check out a few tracks at MP3.

    Monday, June 03, 2002


    Another controlled vocabulary, the EDUCAUSE Taxonomy.

    "The EDUCAUSE Taxonomy, a hierarchical subject listing of over 450 terms, helps you more easily explore topics and find specific documents in the association’s extensive collection of online information resources. The EDUCAUSE taxonomy is applied to all information resources library documents, EDUCAUSE publications, Effective Practices and Solutions, and EDUCAUSE conference sessions."


    A couple of nice articles on RSS found through LLRX. RSS For Non-Techie Librarians by Steven M. Cohen (of Library Stuff) lives up to what title promises. He has some screen shots and a bibliography.

    Personal RSS Aggregators by Jon Udell describes many of the programs to use with RSS feeds.

    If you have a site providing an RSS feed you can provide a link tag to alert news readers that there is an RSS feed. This effort is being led by Mark Pilgrim.