Friday, January 28, 2005

Project Gutenberg and MARC Records

You Can Be Part of the Selection Process. Project Gutenberg would like your library to join our MARC record testing program

You and your library can choose the eBooks in this testing program, and can make sure eBook MARC records for these eBooks meet your staff requirements for MARC records.

Please read on for the details.

I have been giving CDs and DVDs to librarians and library directors for some years now, and I have yet to see one of them placed for use.

On the other hand, I receive emails from some librarians, and meet others, who tell me they have acquired Project Gutenberg eBooks and CD or DVD releases and put them on the shelves--on their own--without any prompting.

Sometimes this reminds me of my efforts to do something to get modern eBooks into a Project Gutenberg release, and then it turns out that those authors I approach are unwilling, but I also find that there are those who come to us on their own, asking us to include them.

Therefore, I would like to do one feasibility study to start with, perhaps in several parts to optimize the study to determine how much a set of MARC records would improve circulation of Project Gutenberg eBooks.

To that end, I would like to recruit some 100 librarians and patrons who will be willing to take some pre-arranged collection of eBooks and MARC records to accompany them to libraries.

Then perhaps we can see how many libraries in general we might be able to expect to include Project Gutenberg eBooks if we included these MARC records with them. We might also ask to hear how many of these who did include eBooks in their collections would have done so if an inclusion of MARC records were not available.

This study's plan is to create collections of eBooks of sizes of perhaps from several dozen to several hundred to perhaps even thousands, for the three parts of this study, before the choice is made to create MARC records for all of the Project Gutenberg eBooks in prescribed formats suggested by the study's outcome.

If you are willing to take one of our sets of eBooks to your local libraries, schools, etc. please let me know.


Michael S. Hart
Project Gutenberg
Executive Coordinator

Posted with permission.

Free OPAC System

Avanti MicroLCS version 1.0 beta 4 is released.

To begin 2005, Avanti Library Systems has released Avanti MicroLCS version 1.0 beta 4, a Java based OPAC and cataloging system. Many things have been changed and improved in beta 4, mostly under the hood. Among these are a much simplified installation procedure, a server management console, a simpler architecture and directory layout, and many bug fixes, optimisations and refinements that make this a rock solid release. Also included in this release is AvantiMARC, an application program interface (API) for manipulating MARC records. It is functional but not yet enabled in beta 4, as further refinements are underway and MARC utilities based on AvantiMARC are still under development. AvantiMARC will soon be released separately as a MARC API package under the terms of the LGPL license.

Currently the only documentation available for beta 4 is the README file which provides installation instructions and information on basic use of the server and client. More comprehensive documentation and supplementary material are forthcoming and will be posted as soon as they become available.


The Ohio Library Council's Technical Services Division would like to announce their sponsorship of the DEWEYERROR list, a new electronic distribution list that will alert members to suspected errors in Dewey numbers in LC records.

Do you, or does your library, routinely accept Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) numbers from Library of Congress (LC) catalog records without checking them first? Or, do you not only check them, but also take the trouble to advise LC when you suspect a number is in error? If you answered yes to either of these questions, the DEWEYERROR list is available for your use.

The Ohio Library Council's Technical Services Division is sponsoring this list based upon the support of several of our members. It supersedes a privately maintained list dedicated to the same purpose. Fianna Holt, Technical Services Librarian at Albright College (Reading, PA) has commented: "This list is worthwhile for the mistakes that I can catch or can alert the staff when it is an ordered item. I know that just today, your message on the book Now, discover your strengths by Marcus Buckingham was valuable as we had accepted the number as is. It's clearly misclassified and I am going to change to your suggestion!"

To subscribe to the list, send an e-mail to with the text SUBSCRIBE DEWEYERROR plus your name. This is not a discussion list - only notification takes place - so postings should not be excessive. All postings are verified for appropriateness (but not for accuracy) so you will be spared irrelevant material. The list has no official connection with the Library of Congress, nor with OCLC, owners and publishers of the Dewey Decimal Classification(TM) system.


Over on AUTOCAT (a must read for any cataloger) there is a very heated discussion being raged about the process of development of AACR3. Too much is being done behind closed doors without input from the mass of catalogers. The reason given for this is that it would be confusing getting comments from everybody and that folks are represented by their organizations on the JSC. Another reason that has been put forward is that the publisher feels that prior publication will hurt sales. Not likely. What would be posted would be a draft, there would be changes made based on comments received.

I feel things have changed since the last major revision and tools are available to make the process more democratic. How about posting the document on a wiki and then letting people add comments at the particular rule? I'm sure that it could be set up to keep the original always there and only allow additions, the comments.

I'm on the Cataloging Committee for SLA and was given the opportunity to view section one. However, I was given very short notice and was required to make comments on the whole section and so had to pass. So the process excludes even supposed to represent others. I think a better solution could be found.

Software Contest

OCLC Research Sponsors Software Contest to Encourage Innovation. OCLC Research announced a contest intended to give developers an outlet for creative software development of library services.

The contest is intended to encourage innovation and development of Web-based services for libraries and library users. Contestants will be challenged to think differently about their environments by working with deconstructed functional components of library services. The prize is $2,500.00 US.

It will be nice to see someone get something back from their idea and hard work other than the thanks and gratitude of the profession.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Atom and MODS

The code for using Atom (the RSS standard) to syndicate Metadata Object Description Schema (MODS) content.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Google Book

This looks interesting, especially with the Open WorldCat program and Google Scholar recently getting so much attention. Google Hacks, 2nd ed. by Tara Calishain and Rael Dornfest.
In his foreword to the book, Craig Silverstein, Director of Technology at Google, observes, "Since 'Google Hacks' first appeared, search has, if possible, only grown in importance. Not only is there more information than ever to be found--via email, computer hard drives, and newly digitized repositories of previously offline content--there is also a greater need to automate tasks and to locate that needle of information in a haystack that will just not stop growing."

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Moving Image Metadata

This postconference workshop at SURA/ViDe, Thursday, March 31, 2005 looks very good. I heard Grace Agnew speak a few years back and found her very knowledgeable and worth hearing. She was (and may still be) involved in the development of MPEG-7.
This all-day postconference workshop will cover the basics of providing metadata for moving image resources and collections. There will be an introduction to basic concepts; a comparative exploration of the new metadata system MPEG-7, PB-Core (Public Broadcasting System's enhancement of Dublin Core), and the native data element set of the Moving Image Collections Project; an introduction to METS (Metadata Encoding & Transmission Standard) and how to use it; and an overview of digital rights management.

The workshop will feature the Moving Image Collections (MIC) Project as an implementation of many of the workshop topics. MIC is a joint project of the Association of Moving Image Archivists and the Library of Congress. Rutgers University, Georgia Tech, and University of Washington are collaborating on its creation and maintenance.

The workshop will be co-taught by Grace Agnew, Rutgers University Libraries; Jane Johnson, Library of Congress; and Dan Kniesner, Oregon Health & Science University Library.

Monday, January 24, 2005


Development of an Automation Software for Reconciliation of INIS/ETDE Thesauruses Singh, Manoj and Gupta, Rajiv and Prakasan, E.R. and Vijai Kumar, (1999) In Proceedings Conf. on Recent Advances in Information Technology (READIT-99), pp. 44-54.
ETDE (Energy Technology and Data Exchange) and INIS (International Nuclear Information System) thesauruses contain nearly twenty thousand descriptors and are not necessarily identical. A project has been undertaken by the International organisations to make a common thesaurus for both INIS and ETDE to facilitate better exchange and retrieval of information between/from these databases. This paper describes the automation implemented during our participation in the project for Reconcile the Structures of the Word Blocks in the ETDE and INIS Thesauruses, with respect to the descriptors currently in the two thesauruses through a PC based RDBMS Software. The Software THEMERGE was developed in FoxPro 2.5 Relational Database Management Systems. The software handles all-possible reconcile recommendation suggested by specialist, printing the recommendation sheet for uploading it later. This has not only widened the scope of flexibility, portability and convertibility of recommendations, but also helped to achieve quicker project completion.


I try to include awards information (Field 586) in the bibliographic records. A good place to track down awards is the Database of Award-Winning Children's Literature (DAWCL).
DAWCL has over 4,500 records from 57 awards across six English-speaking countries (United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, and Ireland). Click the link Explanation of Awards above to see a list of awards, their countries, and a brief explanation. Each book is indexed to some degree so users can find it using the form search or the keyword search.

Frankfurt Principles

The Croatian translation of the Frankfurt Principles has been posted on the IFLA website.