Friday, August 12, 2005


A short but interesting post about alphabetization and an early union catalog. He is discussing, Contributions to a history of alphabetization in Antiquity and the Middle Ages (Collection Latomus)

Tech TV

I've been missing Tech TV. When I was recovering from the accident and spending all day in bed I could pass hours watching The Screen Savers, Call for Help, and even X-Play. Then they were bought by G4 and the format changed from geek to nerd. Comic book and DVD reviews replaced registry hacks and liquid nitrogen cooling of the processor. Now even the name of the last show remaining has been changed and only Sarah from the old group is still there. Ah the good old days.

However, lately I've been investigating and podcasts and I came across This Week in Tech (TWIT). Most of the folks from Tech TV are there discussing things just as they did on The Screen Savers. It's only once a week, not a daily, and being audio only it loses something. Kilt day won't be the same. If you too have been missing Tech TV this is a good substitute.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

OCLC Milestone

WorldCat now has one billion holdings.

Java MARC Tool

The second release candidate of MARC4J 2.0 is now available. Starting from release 2.0rc1 the event based parser is replaced by an easier to use interface that uses a simple iterator over a collection of MARC records.

The MARC4J library includes:

  • An easy to use interface that can handle large record sets
  • Readers and writers for both MARC and MARC XML
  • A build-in pipeline model to pre- or postprocess MARC XML using any XSLT processor that supports the JAXP interface
  • A MARC record object model (like DOM for XML) for in-memory editing of MARC records
  • Support for data conversions from MARC-8 ANSEL, ISO5426 or ISO6937 to UCS/Unicode and back
  • Vendor neutral XML support through JAXP and SAX2, a high performance XML interface
  • Support for conversions between MARC and MARC XML
  • Tight integration with the JAXP, DOM and SAX2 interfaces
  • Easy to integrate with other XML interfaces like DOM, XOM, JDOM or DOM4J
  • Command-line utilities for MARC and MARC XML conversions
  • Javadoc documentation

Wednesday, August 10, 2005


Connotea, the online reference management service, is experimenting with geotagging.
We're experimenting with geotagging, which allows you to use special tags to associate latitude and longitude coordinates with your articles, and then view their geographical distribution using Google Earth.

MARC Tools

In a few weeks I'm giving a talk on MARC tools.
There are many free tools available to perform specific tasks on MARC records. Proper use of these tools will help to eliminate improper coding, clean up of catalogs, or transform records into another format. Among the tools to be discussed will be MARC RTP, MarcEdit, MarcXGen, and the FRBR Tool from the Library of Congress.
I've started a FURL page for those I may discuss. Am I missing any?

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Audio Files

Yahoo now has an audio search. It provides a separate result pages for music podcasts and other. Missing MP3 tags make the results less useful.

Since I picked on OCLC just now, I should mention they do have a good collection of talks available, their Distinguished Seminar Series. I've downloaded several of these, added some tags and moved them to my player. Without titles, artists, genre, or year they would not copy.

Over on Research Buzz, there is the posting Setting up Auto-Discovery of Podcasts By Keyword. Looks useful, it takes a few tools to do this, but all are free and the instructions clear.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Non-Roman Scripts

The display and encoding of non-roman scripts in the catalog is a problem. We are slowly but steadily moving to UNICODE. A good resource is NRSI: Computers & Writing Systems
The NRSI is a research and development team within SIL International, whose mission is to provide guidance, information, research and development for SIL and its partners to facilitate the use of non-Roman and complex scripts in linguistic study, translation, literacy, and publishing.