Friday, January 17, 2003


Monday is a holiday. There may not be any posts until Tuesday. Take the time to read something by Dr. King, his Letter from a Birmingham Jail is short and bears repeated readings.


The minutes for the MARBI meeting held during the ALA Annual Conference in June 2002 are now available. Topics include FAST Subject Headings, Dealing with FRBR Expressions in MARC 21, and Changes for UKMARC Format Alignment.

Summary Notes

OLAC/CAPC is very pleased to announce that the Summary/Abstracts Task Force Final Report, "Summary Notes for Catalog Records" is now available through the OLAC website. This is a fine piece of work and deserves attention. I know I could improve the summaries I write. Thank you to the committee for this useful document. I only wish I could have been at the workshop at the conference.


On January 15, 2003, NISO SC AV submitted the Draft U.S. National Z39.50 Profile for Library Applications to NISO for formal balloting by NISO Voting Members.
This standard specifies the use of ANSI/NISO Z39.50-2003 in library applications. It specifies Z39.50 client and Z39.50 server behavior for search and retrieval across online library catalogs. The specifications included in this standard use The Bath Profile: A Z39.50 Specification for Library Applications and Resource Discovery (Release 2) as its foundation. Conformant use of this standard will improve interoperability between Z39.50 implementations.


When looking for information on library automation Library Technology Guides website is a good 1st stop.
[It] aims to provide comprehensive and objective information related to the field of library automation. This site has no affiliation with any library automation company. Whether you are in the process of selecting a library automation system, or just want to keep up with developments in the field, Library Technology Guide is the place to start.

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Document Object Model

The W3C released the Document Object Model Level 2 HTML Specification as an official Recommendation. It is not compatable with Level 1.
This specification defines the Document Object Model Level 2 HTML, a platform- and language-neutral interface that allows programs and scripts to dynamically access and update the content and structure of HTML 4.01 and XHTML 1.0 documents. The Document Object Model Level 2 HTML builds on the Document Object Model Level 2 Core and is not backward compatible with DOM Level 1 HTML


The MARC to XML Conversion Utility has been updated. Not sure what has changed, the readme file looks the same.

Tuesday, January 14, 2003


I've already mentioned the cataloging portal put together by Lynne LeGrow, Library Cataloguing Aids. (Look at the wonderful icon at the head of the page.) Another fine portal is the Cataloguer's Toolbox. It was last modified today, so it is kept current. They also have older versions of the site going back to May 1995. You can even download a MARC record for the site.

Monday, January 13, 2003


The ODLIS Online Dictionary of Library and Information Science is created by Joan M. Reitz. The current version contains approximately 4,000 terms and cross-references.
ODLIS is designed to be a hypertext reference resource for library and information science professionals, university students and faculty, and users of all types of libraries. The primary criterion for including a new term is whether a librarian or other information professional might reasonably be expected to encounter it at some point in his (or her) career, or be required to know its meaning in the course of executing his or her responsibilities as a librarian. The vocabulary of publishing, printing, book history, literature, and computer science has been included when, in the author's judgment, a definition might prove helpful, not only to library and information professionals, but also to laypersons.


I'm currently reading The Fine Art of Small Talk by Debra Fine. It opens by discussing the importance of small talk to professionals. The dentist, hairdresser, realtor, salesperson often use small talk to establish a rapport with the client. Many professional encounters such as interviews also begin with small talk.

I'm a cataloger, not a reference librarian. However, I have worked the reference desk. I tried to avoid small talk with the patrons; I focused on their information needs. Maybe, some chatting as we went back to the stacks to get the materials might have been more productive. "Such an interesting Tattoo, what's its meaning?" As I think about it, the more professional encounters include small talk while the fast food sale is apt to exclude it. Do good reference librarians use small talk to connect with their users? Should we? This is something I do not remember being addressed in library school, but the details are fading. I am nearing my 10th year out of school.