Friday, December 06, 2002


The Institute of Museum and Library Services announces the 2003 competition for the National Award for Library Service, which honors outstanding American libraries that have made extraordinary contributions to their communities. The postmark deadline for receipt of all materials is February 15, 2003. Nominate your favorite local library.

Note Fields

Notes in Bibliographic Records: AACR2R Order and MARC Tags from the University of New Mexico General Library is worth a bookmark. It lists notes in AACR2 order and gives the MARC tag, AACR2 citation, the LCRI and a brief summary. The site has other resources worth a visit.

MARC Field 024

I just don't understand why field 024, Other Standard Identifier, is not used more widely. It takes no time to scan in the barcodes on the item. They are unique identifiers for the item and so can aid in retrieval. Yesterday I downloaded some very nicely done cataloging records for some USGS maps. A fine piece of cataloging. Yet they had not entered in the barcodes found right on the front of the item.

I have been adding this information to our records for several years now. I find it very useful. We often receive boxes of materials as donations. It is much faster to scan the UPC or EAN to see if the item is in our collection than do an author/title search.


Networked Reference Services Committee Releases Question/Answer Transaction Protocol (QATP) - National Information Standards Organization (NISO) Comments are due before Jan. 8, 2003.
The Protocol Subcommittee of NISO Standards Committee AZ on Networked Reference Services is developing a Question/Answer Transaction Protocol (QATP) to support exchange between digital reference systems collaborating in the processing of a question. A preliminary step in the development of a protocol is to describe use cases (also known informally as "functional scenarios") that the protocol is required to support. Use cases help develop protocol requirements.

Thursday, December 05, 2002


MARC::Charset is a package that allows you to easily convert between the MARC-8 character encodings and Unicode (UTF-8). The Library of Congress maintains some essential mapping tables and information about the MARC-8 and Unicode environments. MARC::Charset is essentially a Perl implementation of the specifications found at LC, and supports the following character sets:
  • Latin (Basic/Extended + Greek Symbols, Subscripts and Superscripts)
  • Hebrew
  • Cyrillic (Basic + Extended)
  • Arabic (Basic + Extended)
  • Greek
  • East Asian Characters Includes 13,478 'han' characters, Japanese Hiragana and Katakana (172 characters), Korean Hangul (2,028 characters), East Asian Punctuation Marks (25 characters), 'Component Input Method' Characters (35 characters)


The latest issue, Nov. 2002, of the Newsletter of the Section on Classification and Indexing is now available.

Metadata Crosswalks

Mapping between metadata formats by Michael Day is an extensive listing of maps from one metadata scheme to another. Seen on the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

Day Off

Wed. I'm driving to Austin for a day trip. Most likely there will be no postings for the day. See you Thurs.

Spanish Cataloging Portal

The Biblioteca Argentina de Bibliotecología is a Spanish language portal for library sites. The cataloging links are under "Procesos técnicos".


OCLC-MARC Format Update 2002, Technical Bulletin 247 describes how and when OCLC is implementing the recent changes to MARC21.


The National Library of Medicine has openings for catalogers.

Z39.50/ISN Robot

ZI-Bot Populates Global Server with ISBN Data.
ZI-Bot (Z39.50/ISN Robot) is our project (initiated May 2001) to populate our prototype global server with ISBN and ISSN data from public Z39.50 servers around the world. Whenever a bibp/ISBN link is created and tested, ZI-Bot initiates a parallel query of approximately 75 Z39.50 servers to generate the first response. Over time, ZI-Bot will enrich the database using known item ISN queries on all Z39.50 servers.
An interesting side effect is the Merged MARC data allows field by field comparison of the cataloging of the same item by different institutions. Could be useful in teaching cataloging or cataloging research. Thanks to Matthew Eberle at Library Techlog for pointing this out.

Professional Reading

The latest issue of Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship has some interesting articles.
  • "Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe As A Cooperative Archiving Solution for E-Journals" by Victoria A. Reich.
    The LOCKSS model, based on analysis of the history of cultural continuity epitomized by "Lots of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe," creates low-cost, persistent digital "caches" of e-journal content housed locally at institutions that have authorized access to that content and actively choose to preserve it.
  • "Building Digital Archives for Scientific Information" by Leah Solla
    PRISM is a four-year project funded by Phase 2 of the Digital Libraries Initiative from the National Science Foundation to develop risk assessment strategies for web resources. It is a collaborative project between the Cornell Computer Science Department, the Human-Computer Interaction Group of the Cornell Communication Department, and Cornell University Library. Specific focus areas of the project include: digital object architecture, digital preservation, human-centered research, interoperability, policy enforcement, and web preservation.


A variation of FOAF is being used to link 'blogs, Blog RDF. Dave Bryson has created a tool to generate an RDF file to include in the head of a Web log showing other sites of a similar nature. Blog RDF does not have the drawback of FOAF, spam, since it only includes Web sites not e-mail. I've not yet created a file for Catalogablog. No word on anyone reading the RDF file to create a map of the Web log universe. Just an interesting idea at this point.

Monday, December 02, 2002


Information Outlook, vol. 6, no. 12, Dec. 2002 has the article "Using RSS: An Explanation and Guide" by Steven M. Cohen. Steven can be found every day at Library Stuff. The same issue also has "XML Under the Hood" by Davida Scharf.


"Transcribing and encoding spoken data" by Marco Cencini in OCLC Systems & Services vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 205-211 (2002) presents some basic features for encoding spoken texts with the TEI (Text Encoding Initiative).


The two main standards for archival description Rules for Archival Description (RAD) and Archives, Personal Papers, and Manuscripts (APPM) are being brought into alignment. "Saving room for CUSTARD" by Randall C Jimerson in OCLC Systems & Services vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 173-177 (2002) describes the effort. CUSTARD is the Canadian-US Task Force on Archival Description, BTW.

Professionsal Reading

Online Information Review vol. 26, no. 5 (2002) has the articles
  • "The design of metadata for the Digital Museum Initiative in Taiwan" by Chao-chen Chen; Hsueh-hua Chen; Kuang-hua Chen; Jieh Hsiang.
    This paper discusses issues related to the development of metadata in Taiwan. It describes the development process of a Chinese metadata system, Metadata Interchange for Chinese Information (MICI), and an XML/metadata management system, Metalogy. Both were developed under the Digital Museum Initiative sponsored by the National Science Council of Taiwan.
  • "Aiming at quality and coverage combined: blending physical and virtual union catalogues" by Janifer Gatenby
    This article discusses the deficiencies of search engines and the importance of metadata before examining three models of metadata retrieval: distributed; distributed data with a centralised index; and centralised union catalogue. In listing the advantages and disadvantages of the distributed model, the Z39.50 protocol is used as an example. The OAI harvest protocol is the example of the second model. Virtual union catalogues are compared with a real one. A pan-European model is discussed as a way to combine the best of all three models, with EUCAT as its base.


Genre can be an important point of access for materials. Here are a couple of links to sites for children's literature.


The UKMARC Manual is now available full-text on-line. Thanks to Library news Daily for pointing this out

Markup Languages

STMML. A markup language for scientific, technical and medical publishing in Data Science Journal, Volume 1, Issue 2, August 30, 2002, pp. 1-65
STMML is an XML-based markup language covering many generic aspects of scientific information. It has been developed as a re-usable core for more specific markup languages. It supports data structures, data types, metadata, scientific units and some basic components of scientific narrative. The central means of adding semantic information is through dictionaries. The specification is through an XML Schema which can be used to validate STMML documents or fragments. Many examples of the language are given.
From FOS News