Friday, March 13, 2009

MODS MADS Changes

Some news from the MODS/MADS folks.
The MODS/MADS Editorial Committee is working through a long list of change proposals for the 3.4 and 4.0 versions of MODS. The 3.4 release will include minor changes, and the 4.0 release will include more major changes that prevent backwards compatibility with the 3.x versions. We'll be posting to this list and to the MODS web site specific change proposals as they are approved for inclusion. The Committee meets via conference call biweekly, and we expect that approving the queued changes for 3.4 will take at least two more calls. Here is a summary of our current status:

Changes for 3.4 approved on March 11, 2009:
  • Add the following attributes to location/holdingSimple/copyInformation/note: "ID", "lang", "script", "transliteration", "xlink", and "xml:lang". Rationale: adding these attributes will harmonize the definition of <note> with the other places this element appears in MODS.
  • Add the "type" attribute to location/holdingSimple/copyInformation/form. Rationale: adding this attribute will harmonize the definition of <form> with its definition within <physicalDescription>.
  • Add the "displayLabel" attribute to all top-level MODS elements that now lack it. Rationale: makes MODS overall more consistent, and promotes easier use of MODS as a back-end format for customized cataloging and discovery systems.
The MODS/MADS Editorial Committee will hold our next conference call on Wednesday March 25, and will be reviewing more change proposals at that time. Please post to the MODS list if you have a feature you'd like to see in 3.4 or a future revision, or if you have any comments on the changes to be discussed on the next call by the Editorial Committee.

Changes to be discussed on March 25, 2009:
  • Address the differing definitions of extent within physicalDescription and part
  • Add script attribute to language
  • Add lang, xml:lang, script and transliteration attributes to language subelements
  • Add edtf date format as an option on date elements
  • Support RDA "Content Type" element
  • Add "references" or "reviewOf" to relatedItem type attribute list
  • Expand use of qualifier attributes

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