Friday, October 01, 2004


Metadata switch: thinking about some metadata management and knowledge organization issues in the changing research and learning landscape by Lorcan Dempsey, Eric Childress, Carol Jean Godby, Thomas B. Hickey, Diane Vizine-Goetz, and Jeff Young appears as a preprint on the OCLC site.
The academic library is not an end in itself. It supports research, learning and scholarship, and it must adapt as research and learning behaviors change in a network environment. The papers in this volume give a good sense of the challenges posed by such developments and the manifold library response. This paper briefly considers some of these issues, and takes them as its context, but quickly moves to a very specific emphasis. It considers how such library responses create new metadata management and knowledge organization questions, and it then outlines some of the work in OCLC Research which responds to these issues.

Thursday, September 30, 2004


"Creating metadata that work for digital libraries and Google" by Alan Dawson appears in Library Review (2004) v. 53, no. 7, pp. 347-350.
For many years metadata has been recognised as a significant component of the digital information environment. Substantial work has gone into creating complex metadata schemes for describing digital content. Yet increasingly Web search engines, and Google in particular, are the primary means of discovering and selecting digital resources, although they make little use of metadata. This article considers how digital libraries can gain more value from their metadata by adapting it for Google users, while still following well-established principles and standards for cataloguing and digital preservation.

Union Catalogs

Union Catalogs of the World at Info Connect is a listing, sorted by place, of union catalogs. They are also looking for submissions of catalogs they have missed to add to the listing.
As long as the union catalogs being submitted, are in electronic format such as CD-ROM access or Internet access, and provide access to at least 5 large libraries, all URls sent will be added to this web page. The libraries in the union catalog can be part of a town, city, county, region, consortium, network, state, province or country etc.
Seen at ResourceShelf.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004


I guess it shows my age but when I see e I think of the natural log, not electronic. I was in the post office and saw an ad for "moving at the speed of e" and my first thought was that's not very fast in mph. Only a bit later did it occur to me it was moving at the speed of electricity or electronic. E-commerce, e-mail, and all the rest don't give me that problem, since the context is clear. Next I'll be complaining about the loud music.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004


At last, at Library Stuff, I've heard a good use for a Wiki on a library site. Pathfinders, or finding aids could benefit from corrections, annotations and additions from the public. This makes sense. Local experts or fans of a topic could very well have useful knowledge and the desire to share that information. Users might discover broken links or newer editions and wish to save others from the pain they experienced.

Until now I thought Wikis only had a place in the back office. They make perfect sense for new employee orientation material. As employees are hired they can add materials that would have helped them understand things better. In the cataloging department a Wiki is a good tool to record local cataloging decisions. Not being a reference librarian, I had not thought they could be used for the pathfinders, another valid use.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Librarians' Book Club

The October-November book selections for the Librarian's Book Club are:In December the book selected is:


I'm going to start experimenting more with Friend of a Friend (FOAF) metadata. Anyone currently using this? Anyone want to be my friend? (Sounds pathetic). Will I be the first librarian blogger with a FOAF file? I didn't notice any others in the 'blogs I read.

OPAC Improvements is looking for suggestions to improve OPACs. Anyone offering a suggestion gets access to the Wiki where the suggestions are compiled.

Online Catalogs

British Library Integrated Catalogue is now available. These previously separate catalogues are included in the Integrated Catalogue:
  • General printed books pre-1975
  • Humanities and Social Sciences post-1975
  • Humanities and Social Sciences open-access reference books
  • Science, Technology and Business
  • Document Supply Books
  • Document Supply Serials
  • Document Supply Conferences
  • Asia, Pacific and Africa Collections
  • Cartographic
  • Newspapers
  • Printed Music
  • Register of Preservation Surrogates
Thanks Ian for pointing this out to me.