Saturday, January 10, 2004

NISO's Metasearch Initiative

NISO's metasearch Initiative will identify, develop, and frame the standards and other common understandings that are needed to enable an efficient and robust information environment. The goal of NISO's Metasearch Initiative is to enable:
  • metasearch service providers to offer more effective and responsive services
  • content providers to deliver enhanced content and protect their intellectual property
  • libraries to deliver services that distinguish their services from Google and other free web services.
The standards setting component is now being launched. Jenny Walker (ExLibrisUSA) and Andre Pace (North Carolina State University) are co-chairing this Initiative. Task Groups will work in three areas:
  • Task Group 1: Access management
  • Task Group 2: Collection Description
  • Task Group 3: Search/Retrieve
NISO invites you to volunteer to participate in this activity and help set the standards that can maximize the value and efficiency of information services.

Thursday, January 08, 2004


The following document is available for review by the MARC 21 community:

Faceted Classifications

William Denton, the LIS student, continues to make his interesting papers available on the Web. The latest is "How to Make a Faceted Classification and Put It On the Web" Nov. 2003.

Seen on Library Planet.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004


The International Thesaurus of Refugee Terminology (ITRT) is designed to facilitate information retrieval and exchange. In print since 1988, the Thesaurus has proven an essential resource for librarians and information workers. However, the specialized nature of and ongoing evolution in refugee terminology meant that the print editions were soon outdated. In 2002, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Library and Forced Migration Online (FMO) began discussing how to create a web-based version of the Thesaurus that would be more responsive to the needs of its users.

The Thesaurus is now available as an interactive and searchable tool online, in English, French and Spanish. We hope this new version will serve as a more efficient medium for identifying relevant indexing terminology and as a value-added mechanism for managing refugee- and forced migration-related information.

Thanks to Owen Massey for bringing this to my attention.

Statement of International Cataloguing Principles

The participants of the first IFLA Meeting of Experts on an International Cataloguing Code (IME ICC), held in Frankfurt this past July 2003, have approved a final draft Statement of International Cataloguing Principles.


The minutes for the MARBI meeting held during the ALA Annual Conference in June 2003 are now available.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004


The 2003 annual report of the Cataloging Section of IFLA is now available.

PDA Software

A few days ago I posted that the Handheld Librarian was looking for tips on cataloging PDA software. They received an answer, the preprint of a paper by Denise Koufogiannakis, Pam Ryan and Susan Dahl Just Another Format: Integrating Resources for Users of Personal Digital Assistants. It is due to appear in January 2005 in the Acquisitions Librarian.

Sunday, January 04, 2004

Full Text Databases

One of the databases I use frequently is the NASA Astrophysics Data Service. This service has been a source of innovation and experimentation with on-line full text. It is perhaps equal in importance to the physics preprint server, though less well known. They have just made some enhancements to the service.
We have just finished the development of the new ADS full text search system. This new service allows you to search the OCRd text of all the scanned pages in the ADS (some 2.5 million pages).

A nice test of this new system was to find an answer to a question posed in the recent Physics Today about the first use of the phrase "critical mass". The author of that article found a 1939 article with this phrase. The full text search in the ADS showed a quote from Arthur Eddington using that phrase in 1919.

I think this clearly shows that this new service can be quite valuable for historians and librarians, as well as scientists. As always, please let me know if you have any comments or suggestions about this new service or any other part of the ADS.

Another new service of the ADS is myADS, a personal notification service that allows you to store several queries and receive the results weekly from the latest database updates.

The two new services are linked from the main ADS query page.


The latest issue of Info Career Trends is now available. Contents include:
  • Career Q&A From the Library Career People
  • Alternative Work Arrangements: Exploring Your Options and Making It Work
  • Developing a Career As a Freelance Storyteller
  • Sequencing Librarians
  • Part-time Librarian, Full-time Parent
  • We're Not In Kansas Anymore, Toto ... Or, How To Combine a Career and Family Life by Telecommuting
  • What's Online? Recommended Resources
  • But I Want To Hold It In My Hand! Print Resources