Friday, September 15, 2006

A Common Standard for Digital Repository Metadata

Repository Librarian and the Next Crusade: The Search for a Common Standard for Digital Repository Metadata by Beth Goldsmith and Frances Knudson describes the search for a common metadata standard for the millions of records at the Los Alamos National Laboratory Research Library. Surprise it was MARC, well MARCXML, that won as the best all around format.
In 2003, MARCXML was selected as a uniform metadata standard for the LANL Research Library's digital repository. Reasons for the choice included its relative maturity in the XML standards world, its familiarity in the library community, and its ability to blend well with modern mark-up technologies. Perhaps most important for a nominally bibliographic metadata standard, it can be elegantly extended to adapt to numerous metadata needs. In the two-plus years that it has been used to map metadata records in the library's digital repository, MARCXML has proven itself to be robust and capable in meeting all requirements without breaking the standard while remaining flexible and transparent to downstream use.

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