Friday, April 25, 2003


The Semantic Blogging Demonstrator a blog supporting HP Labs' semantic blogging research programme has some very interesting features.
The purpose of this blog is, firstly, to present items of general interest relating to the semantic blogging project for public consumption. Secondly, and noting that the semantic blogging meme is spreading, I am keen to plug HP into the public network encouraged by trackbacks, comments and general discussion around the concept. Thirdly, this blog demonstrates very basic semantic blogging capabilities. In particular, if you click on the N3, RDFXML or Brownsauce links on any item (or the links at the bottom of the page for the whole category) you can see the metadata for each item. This metadata is 'bootstrapped' automatically, I have done no manual work to create this. Further semantic blogging capabilities will be added when they are mature. Fourthly, the sister blog acts as an online demonstrator for the semantic blogging project.
Posting topics include RSS, Metadata and 'blog tools. I'm not familiar with Brownsauce, something else to look into. Adding this one to my blogroll.

MARC Search

A new version of MARC Search is available. No major changes.
MarcSearch is a small package written in PHP which allows users to search for records from MARC files. It is not meant as a replacement for a library system, but as an easy way for libraries who want to go online without having to upgrade their software or purchasing expensive add-ons.

Thursday, April 24, 2003


Committee on Cataloging to present a technical session on metadata at the Annual Conference, New York, June 9, 2003.
Metadata Standards: what's new & how will they impact your work
Monday, Jun 09, 2003 1:30 PM - 3:00 PM
Sponsors: Technical Standards Committee, Committee on Cataloging, Division of Information Technology
Level: Intermediate

As information technologies evolve, metadata standards have become widely accepted in organizing information resources of both print and non-print. The most noticeable standards activities include Metadata Encoding & Transmission Standards (METS) and METS' extension schema Metadata Object Description Schema (MODS). METS schema is designed to encode descriptive, administrative, and structural metadata for objects within a digital library using the XML schema language. MODS is an extension of METS in the form of XML schema for descriptive metadata that uses MARC definitions, so is compatible with existing library bibliographic data. By using the new XML technologies, METS and its extension schemas are bridging AACR2 and MARC with the new technology to make it easier and more effective for the cataloging and management of information resources. Do you want to know how these standards will impact your work? Come to this session to find out more!


  • Overview of metadata standards: Marcia L. Zeng, Kent State University
  • METS: Jerome McDonough, New York University
  • MODS: Rebecca Guenther, Library of Congress
Sponsor: Inmagic, Inc.

New Melvyl Catalog

Seen on What's New at the CDL.
California Digital Library (CDL) rolls out the new Melvyl-T catalog allowing library patrons - faculty, students, staff, and other researchers as well as the public at large - to search a state-of-the-art catalog of over 23 million records for materials held by the libraries of the 10 campuses of the UC system.

Compared to the legacy Melvyl catalog - which will continue operating until August 2003 in parallel to the new catalog - Melvyl-T has a new format and design, offers users a variety of enhanced features, and contains completely updated data for the holdings of the UC system. Once the legacy Melvyl catalog has been retired, Melvyl-T (for Transition) will become Melvyl.

Will I have to change my Z39.50 settings?

Librarian's Book Club

The selections this month in the Librarian's Book Club are:
The Librarian's Book Club is a group to read and discuss books that are about libraries and the library profession. Every two months the Librarian's Book Club will select a new book to discuss. All you need to do is get yourself a copy of the current book and subscribe to the discussion list.

Wednesday, April 23, 2003


The Concept of a Work in WorldCat: An Application of FRBR by Rick Bennett, Brian F. Lavoie and Brian F. Lavoie.
This paper explores the concept of a work in WorldCat, the OCLC Online Union Catalog, using the hierarchy of bibliographic entities defined in the Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records (FRBR) report. A methodology is described for constructing a sample of works by applying the FRBR model to randomly selected WorldCat records. This sample is used to estimate the number of works in WorldCat, and describe some of their key characteristics. Results suggest that the majority of benefits associated with applying FRBR to WorldCat could be obtained by concentrating on a relatively small number of complex works.


Building a Metadata-Based Website by Brett Lider and Anca Mosoiu discusses the use of metadata in an enterprise Web site.
The goal of this article was to help readers develop an understanding of core and supporting metadata and the benefits of using them to build a website. We hope that by walking through an example of a website for a fictitious company that has chosen to build their website this way, we have shown the power of this technique.


MARC::Record v1.25 was just released. It has a few doc fixes and more importantly allows you to read in MARC data that has nulls, spaces, carriage returns and line feeds between records.


Webwords appears to be a useful feature in the OPAC for users of audio books. I'd be happy to hear a clip of the reader before checking it out. I often listen to audio books and occasionally a readers voice is not what I want to hear. I've returned a few items after listening to only a few minutes, due to the voice. Hearing a clip would have avoided that.
The webwords project aims to enrich the quality of the experience of choosing an audio book for visually impaired users of library catalogues. It will do this by allowing them to listen to a small sample actually taken from a spoken word book they have found on their local catalogue. This will allow them to hear what that particular book sounds like, and to choose based on the voice and style of the person who actually narrated it. webwords will benefit everyone who loves spoken word books, whether visually impaired or not.

webwords works with any web based catalogue system capable of displaying active hyperlinks. The samples will be stored in a database that will be at this web address. All that is required for a library service to enhance their catalogue using webwords, is to link their stock to corresponding samples in the webwords database. This is done simply by inserting a field into the standard library catalogue marc record. Libraries can choose which samples to use, based on their own local stock.

Tuesday, April 22, 2003

Document Images and Related Metadata

AIIM International announces XML standards initiative for the exchange of document images and related metadata.
AIIM International, the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) industry association, today announced the ballot results on a new standard using Extensible Markup Language (XML) tags to facilitate the exchange of information managed by document management technologies -- this includes the associated metadata defining and/or describing the information to be shared.

This standard focuses specifically on document image files and may result in the development of an International Standard within ISO TC 171/SC2/WG2.

Scanned bitmap images of paper documents have become a common method of storing and sharing information in the business and private sector. The increasing growth of the Internet and sharing of information demands an efficient standardized method for exchanging images and the metadata associated with them.


The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography by Charles W. Bailey, Jr. is a valuable resource.
This bibliography presents selected English-language articles, books, and other printed and electronic sources that are useful in understanding scholarly electronic publishing efforts on the Internet. Most sources have been published between 1990 and the present; however, a limited number of key sources published prior to 1990 are also included. Where possible, links are provided to sources that are freely available on the Internet.
Section 6.1 covers "Library Issues: Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata"


"Z39.50 and personal bibliographic software" by John W East in Library Hi Tech (2003) vol. 21 no. 1 pp. 34 - 43
Many thousands of researchers are now using personal bibliographic managers such as Reference Manager, EndNote and ProCite to access bibliographic databases via the Z39.50 protocol. With the EndNote software as an example, this paper demonstrates how researchers are using a standard search interface to access diverse databases and download references into their personal databases. There follows an overview of problems involved in searching the Z39.50 servers of some standard library automation systems (Innovative Interfaces, GEAC, SIRSI, Endeavour) and of two vendors of non-OPAC databases (Research Libraries Group and SilverPlatter). The paper concludes with some suggestions as to how the library community can contribute to improving the effectiveness of Z39.50 as a research tool.

Monday, April 21, 2003

OML: Outline Markup Language

The specification for OML: Outline Markup Language is open for comment until May 30.
The OML Specification process is very simple. Join the mailing list, get involved, and you are considered a member. Proposals for the specification can be made by any member of the group. The project leads will take all proposals into consideration, and attempt to get an honest consensus of what people want. The changes will be implemented in the specification, the XML Schema and the DTD. It will then be frozen for that version on a decided date.

Texas "Super-DMCA"

Many states are being pressured by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) to adopt legislation that would have serious consequences for freedom of speech, encryption, and the public's rights. It's not too late to make a difference! Tell your state legislators to stop this "Super DMCA" (S-DMCA) legislation.

Send a letter using EFF's Action Center.

Sandy Berman

The Elizabeth Stone Lecture by Sandy Berman is available. You will need Windows Media Player Version 7 or higher.