Saturday, December 30, 2006

Library Visits

Today Cora and I visited the Library of Congress and the Folger Shakespeare Libraries. They don't build libraries like that any more. LC is so monumental. Fitting for the library at the center of an empire. The Folger is so traditionally academic. At LC we visited the exhibit of the Saint John's Bible. Remarkable, wondrous. We never seem to be in town when either have music. I'd love to hear a concert in either venue.

Friday, December 29, 2006

OAI DC or SRU DC Schemata to MODS

The Network Development and MARC Standards Office have made available a stylesheet to transform simple Dublin Core (DC) expressed in either OAI DC or SRU DC schemata to MODS (version 3.2).
The transformation may be used in cases where simple Dublin Core records are available, but richer metadata in MODS may be desirable (e.g. by enhancing the records). For instance, there have been some METS profiles that have been developed that require MODS descriptive metadata.

There may be a need to develop a companion stylesheet that transforms qualified DC (or some version of qualified DC, e.g. DSpace's). We would be interested in any feedback on this.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Reston Regional Library

Yesterday I had the pleasure of visiting the Reston Regional Library. In late afternoon it was busy. Folks were checking Value Line on-line, the books on CD, browsing in the stacks, and on the public Internet access machines. The parking lot was about 75% full. Seems to be well used by the local community. They had a good selection of computer books, including many animal titles, and downloadable audio-books.

OCLC & Authority Records

From OCLC:
As a result of changes outside of OCLC's control that impact the authorities distribution
files, OCLC will not load new authorities files (names and subjects) until after the
first of the year.

This decision will have an impact on all OCLC users (Connexion and Z39.50) of the LC Names and Subject Authority Files:

The most recent distributed files loaded into OCLC systems from the Library of Congress were those dated 12/18. Any records currently in the distribution queue will remain in that state. Please note: No data will be lost.

OCLC has additional details.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Solr 1.1 Release

Solr 1.1 is now available for download. What is Sorl?
Solr is an open source enterprise search server based on the Lucene Java search library, with XML/HTTP and JSON APIs, hit highlighting, faceted search, caching, replication, and a web administration interface.
This tool is going to be part of a preconference at the Code4lib get-together.

CONSER Standard Record

Draft documentation related to the CONSER standard record is now available. Comments on the drafts are due by January 29, 2007. These comments should relate to the clarity of the wording of the documents, not to decisions related to the adoption of the CONSER standard record.

Friday, December 22, 2006


BitTorrent is often seen as nothing more than a tool for stealing copy-protected material. In reality, P2P networking is a powerful tool for moving large files. Warner Brothers and 20th Century Fox have already agreed to use it to distribute content. Now the BBC will also be using BitTorrent. Would it make sense for libraries to offer torrents of our digital files? This is a tool our patrons are using.


I have a new favorite/default search tool, SearchMash. AJAX, no ads, clean, offers weblog, videos, Wikepedia, and images off to the right.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Normas y Formatos Bibliográficos

OCLC's Bibliographic Formats and Standards, (Normas y Formatos Bibliograficos) is now available in Spanish for the first five chapters.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

New Cataloging and Acquisitions Web site at LC

An announcement from LC:
During the first week of January 2007, the Library of Congress will launch a new Cataloging and Acquisitions Web site, illustrated below, which will provide a single source for all cataloging and acquisitions-related material available from the Library of Congress. This new Web site will replace the current Cataloging, Cataloging Policy and Support Office, and Acquisitions Web sites, and will also include links to cataloging and acquisitions-related material on other Web sites maintained by the Library, such as the Program for Cooperative Cataloging, MARC Standards, Cataloging Distribution Service, etc. When the new site is launched, users who have bookmarked the former sites will automatically be redirected to the new Cataloging and Acquisitions home page. All material available on the three current sites will be accessible via this new home page.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Updates to DCMI Terms and RDF Schemas

The DCMI Usage Board has completed an editorial revision of terms in the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set, bringing definitions and usage comments into line with the DCMI Abstract Model. Documentation is available in revised Web pages, RDF schemas, and in a response to comments received during the Public Comment period.

Libtypos Archive

The Libtypos Archive is using a wiki to manage the resource.


News from AUTOCAT
AUTOCAT is about to have a have a new home: Syracuse University (in Syracuse, NY). Syracuse has long experience in running LISTSERV lists and I know that they will be doing everything possible to make the transfer as easy and transparent as possible. The subscription list will be transferred from Buffalo to Syracuse so you will NOT have to resubscribe.
If your feelings about how this list was run prevented you from subscribing in the past, give this another chance. There are new list managers.

Inheritance in FRBR

Modeling Our Understanding, Understanding Our Models: The Case of Inheritance in FRBR by Allen H. Renear and Yunseon Choi appaers in Grove, Andrew, Eds. Proceedings 69th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Information Science and Technology (ASIST) 43, Austin, TX (US).
IFLA's Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records (FRBR) presents a compelling and influential model of the 'bibliographic universe.' However there are interesting variations between FRBR's formal model and the narrative expositions of FRBR's authors and explicators - that is, between the formal model and the framework as more broadly understood by the FRBR community. In this paper we argue that despite a widespread belief to the contrary, attribute inheritance down the 'hierarchy' of Group 1 entities is inconsistent both with the formal model and with the general spirit of the project. We believe these observations reveal an ongoing uncertainty about the nature of bibliographic entities as well as difficulties in maintaining a clear and exact understanding of the models we are using to represent those entities - even when those models are our own creation.

Friday, December 15, 2006

MARBI at ALA Midwinter

MARBI has the following papers available for review by the MARC community:The draft agenda for the ALA Midwinter MARBI meetings is available.

Improving Our Catalogs

10 Ways to Improve Data Quality by Jeffrey Beall in American Libraries, 36(3) pp. 36-37 is now available on ELIS. Pretty standard stuff. It did include one suggestion I'd not thought of before. Some older autobiographies lack a subject heading for the author/subject of the book. I'd add a step and make it 11 ways.... We should check the URLs to make sure they are still working.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Library Geeks

It is always rewarding to listen to Library Geeks. The latest episode is especially worthwhile. The guests had recently returned from an eIFL meeting.
Electronic Information for Libraries. is an independent foundation that strives to lead, negotiate, support and advocate for the wide availability of electronic resources by library users in transition and developing countries. Its main focus is on negotiating affordable subscriptions on a multi-country consortial basis, while supporting the enhancement of emerging national library consortia in member countries.
Some important work being done to bridge the digital divide. One project is Library in a Box. The plan is to distribute a cutting-edge open-source ILS on a CD. What they are describing sounds better than our current system. The catalog would be PINES and/or Koha, with all the required libraries. No additional downloads required. Then a front end like NCSU recently unveiled. This would be based on Collex/Solr/Lucene. Amazing.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control

The Working Group on the Future of Bibliographic Control has been charged to:
  • Present findings on how bibliographic control and other descriptive practices can effectively support management of and access to library materials in the evolving information and technology environment
  • Recommend ways in which the library community can collectively move toward achieving this vision
  • Advise the Library of Congress on its role and priorities

Monday, December 11, 2006

SXSW Awards

The deadline is fast approaching for the chance to enter your site in the SXSW Interactive Web Awards. Your site must have had a redesign or launch in 2006 to be considered. Let's see some library sites in the running if not the winner's circle.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Metadata Standards and Applications

Metadata Standards and Applications: An ALCTS/Library of Congress Workshop. I'm so excited this is coming to Houston. I may be able to make it. The budget is very tight next year, there may be nothing for travel/training. I may still pay for it out of my pocket if there is no budget.
Cataloging : Metadata Standards and Applications: An ALCTS/Library of Congress Workshop

This two-day workshop presents 21st century bibliographic control concepts, including specific metadata standards and applications. The goal of the workshop is to relate what library staff already know about library catalog metadata to digital library metadata, thereby preparing staff to apply their current knowledge to new areas.

Topics covered will include:

  • An introduction to digital libraries
  • What is metadata?
  • Content 'storage' and retrieval models
  • Data creation and management models
  • Relationship models
  • An overview of metadata standards and applications, interoperability, vocabularies, application profiles, quality considerations, and monitoring metadata developments.

Resource Description and Access

A Scope and Structure document for Resource Description and Access (RDA) is now available.


Need a metadata schema for a new project? Looking to make your home-grown schema available to others? SchemaWeb is the place for you.
SchemaWeb is a directory of RDF schemas expressed in the RDFS, OWL and DAML+OIL schema languages. SchemaWeb is a place for developers and designers working with RDF. It provides a comprehensive directory of RDF schemas to be browsed and searched by human agents and also an extensive set of web services to be used by software agents that wish to obtain real-time schema information whilst processing RDF data. RDF Schemas are the critical layer of the Semantic Web. They provide the semantic linkage that 'intelligent' software needs to extract value giving information from the raw data defined by RDF triples.

What does SchemaWeb do? SchemaWeb gathers information about schemas published on the web. SchemaWeb merges the RDF statements from all the schemas registered in the directory into an RDF triples store.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


The Christian Science Monitor had an article about ClaimID recently.
This led Stutzman to conclude that proper management of one's online identity will be a "major problem" in the future. ClaimID is not so much a solution to that problem as it is "a guess ... and a research question," he says. This free service has about 10,000 active users and tries to address two popular concerns: distinguishing yourself from people who share your name and putting the available information in context.

Digital Library Federation / Aquifer Implementation Guidelines for Shareable MODS Records

The Digital Library Federation / Aquifer Implementation Guidelines for Shareable MODS Records has been released by the DLF Aquifer Metadata Working Group.
The primary goal of the Digital Library Federation's Aquifer Initiative is to enable distributed content to be used effectively by libraries and scholars for teaching, learning, and research. The provision of rich, shareable metadata for this distributed content is an important step towards this goal.

To this end, the Metadata Working Group of the DLF Aquifer Initiative has developed a set of implementation guidelines of the Metadata Object Description Schema1 (MODS) specifically for use in describing digital cultural heritage and humanities-based scholarly resources that are to be shared within the Aquifer Initiative and wider.

Cartographic Materials

The 2005 update for Cartographic Materials: A Manual of Interpretation for AACR2, 2002 Revision, 2nd ed. is now available for free download from the ALA Store.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Congratulations to Casey Bisson

I'll join this chorus, congratulations to Casey Bisson for being honored by the Mellon Foundation due to creating WPopac.


WOMBLINK is a simple easy tool that may help get some weblog postings about your library.
WOMBLINK is a simple way for libraries to encourage word-of-mouth advertising by the blogging patrons -- hence the name, Word of Mouth Blog LINK. By adding a "blog this" link to your library web pages, you create a one-click way for bloggers to link to your site from their blog post. Sure, most blogging software products (TypePad, Moveable Type, Blogger, Bloglines, etc.) provide bookmarklets for the blogger to use -- but if the blogger is at a different computer, those don't work.

When bloggers click the WOMBLINK on your web page, they get a two-line snippet of HTML code to paste into their blog post about your library event, new book list, press release, or what have you. It links directly to the page they were on, and can include your library's logo.

I'm not crazy about the name, but it looks like a useful idea. Seen on RSS4Lib.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Screencasting for Our Users

I've been listening to Paul Pival's presentation for the Sirsi/Dynix Institute, Show and Tell The Easy Way - An Introduction to Screencasting. Excellent introduction.

It got me thinking we should have more of these in the context-sensitive help for our OPACs. Having them in their own space and as part of BI is nice, but having them at point of need is best. They are simple to do, it would be a snap for an institution to do one a month. Over time the most important or confusing topics would be covered. Even nicer would be for a vendor in include them in their product.

CamStudio is a free tool to create screencasts, something to get started. I used it to create a couple that I posted to YouTube, resolution suffers there but it gives an idea.

Friday, December 01, 2006

RDF Book Mashup

RDF Book Mashup is a semantic Web tool for bibliographic items.
The RDF book mashup demonstrates how Web 2.0 data sources like Amazon, Google or Yahoo can be integrated into the Semantic Web.

The RDF book mashup makes information about books, their authors, reviews, and online bookstores available on the Semantic Web. This information can be used by RDF tools and you can link to it from your own Semantic Web data.

Fine. Why doesn't it use Open WorldCat? Or even LibraryThing. It is based on ISBNs, yet it doesn't use the xISBN nor thingISBN services. Maybe someone should clue the authors in.

Windows Vista

Windows Vista is soon to appear and machines are already offering free/low cost upgrades to this new version of Windows. However, I just heard that upgrading is more complex than it may appear. Vista compatible machines will run Vista but poorly. Vista premium ready machines will run it without any problems. Cavet emptor.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Cafe Press Store

A Cafe Press store for the Regional Planetary Image Facilities (RPIF) has been set-up. Items have links back to MPOW, the Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI).

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


The Simile folks at MIT have written a utility tool to convert MARC and/or MODS to RDF. They had made the MIT catalog available in RDF for download to experiment with, and the Code4lib folks created torrents to make it easier, but IP issues surfaced and that is currently on hold.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Journal Title Changes and Linking

WOuter Gerritsma at WoW! Wouter over het Web notes some bad linking techniques by journal publishers. Namely, they don't link to the journal title the article was published in but rather in what was the last name of the journal. Broken links and proper citations that was next to useless are the result.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Cigars and a drink in the library, How 2.0.

AACR Revision

Outcomes of the October 2006 meeting of the Joint Steering Committee for Revision of AACR have been mounted on the JSC Web site.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

I'll be away for this weblog until the Monday after Thanksgiving, November 27. All my U.S. readers have a good Thanksgiving. My 15th anniversary falls on Thanksgiving Day this year.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Metadata Paper

Beneath the Metadata: Some Philosophical Problems with Folksonomy by Elaine Peterson appears in the latest D-Lib Magazine.
A traditional classification scheme based on Aristotelian categories yields search results that are more exact. Traditional cataloging can be more time consuming, and is by definition more limiting, but it does result in consistency within its scheme. Folksonomy allows for disparate opinions and the display of multicultural views; however, in the networked world of information retrieval, a display of all views can also lead to a breakdown of the system.
Takes an either-or position. Why not both? Also, seems to make too much about incorrect tagging. If the mass of tags is large enough one incorrect among 1000 correct tags will just get buried. This is only a problem when there is a group effort to supply the bad tag or there are only a small number of tags. There is also the aspect of access for one person or a small group that tagging supplies. The reading list for a class tagged LIS2600 is not much use to most folks but could be very useful to those in the class. Is tagging a replacement for subject analysis? No. Does it provide some access that traditional cataloging misses? Yes. Play around with Library Thing, tags there compliment the LCSH that also exist.

Koha Zoom

This announcement from LibLime, the support company for the open-source Koha library system.
LibLime, the leader in open-source solutions for libraries, announced today that the Nelsonville Public Library System in Athens Ohio has just gone live with Koha ZOOM, and they couldn't be more pleased. Koha ZOOM includes a powerful, full- featured search engine based on Zebra, a high-performance indexing and retrieval engine. Koha ZOOM catapults Koha into the big leagues, improving standards-compliance, eliminating scalability limitations, and offering some of the most advanced searching technologies available. For those libraries who have been waiting for an open-source ILS that rivals the expensive proprietary systems, the wait is over. Koha ZOOM is a true enterprise-class ILS, suitable for even the largest of collections.


And what makes Koha ZOOM so great? "After extensive usability testing, we realized that what patrons and staff really wanted was search behavior and interface that behaves like the successful commercial sites such as and Google," says LibLime's President, Technology and Koha Release Manager Joshua Ferraro. "In short, staff and patrons need an intuitive search that can practically read minds. A tall order, but that's exactly what we ended up accomplishing". As one NPL staffer put it: "This Koha upgrade is top-notch. I don't think I've ever had an easier time searching for items for our patrons."

Additions to the MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions

The codes listed below have been recently approved for use in MARC 21 records. The codes will be added to the online MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions.

The codes should not be used in exchange records until after January 14, 2006. This 60-day waiting period is required to provide MARC 21 implementers time to include newly defined codes in any validation tables they may apply to the MARC fields where the codes are used.

Description Conventions

The following code is for use in subfield $2 in field 506 (Restrictions on Access Note) in Bibliographic and Holdings records.
Standardized terminology for access restriction (DLF/OCLC Registry of Digital Masters Working Group) [use after January 14, 2006]
Term, Name, Title Sources

The following codes are for use in subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community Information records in 6xx fields and in subfield $f in field 040 (Cataloging Source) in Authority records.
Qâ'imat ru'ûs mawdû'ât al-fahras al-'Arabîyah al-mowahad = Arabic Union Catalog Subject Headings [use after January 14, 2006]
Tesauro SPINES: un vocabulario controlado y estructurado para el tratamiento de información sobre ciencia y tecnología para el desarrollo (Madrid: UNESCO, ICYT) [use after January 14, 2006]
The following code is for use in subfield $2 in Bibliographic records in field 752 (Added Entry - Hierarchical Place Name)
British Library newspaper place names (London: British Library) [use after January 14, 2006]

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Children's Book Week

A viral topic is posting about a fondly remembered children' book for Children's Book Week. This one is just too fun to pass.

One of my favorites as a child is Puck of Pook's Hill by Kipling. I always preferred history, even feigned, to make-believe. These short stories picked subjects hard to resist, Vikings, Romans, Britons for example. I may have go back and reread them.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Afghanistan Union Catalog

There ia an Afghanistan union catalog built using Koha, the open-source ILS. In English.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Tagging at Microsoft

Now Microsoft is doing tagging. Tagspace is all about giving you, the consumer of content on and associated sites, the power to identify, define, catalogue, and share what interests you, in ways that make sense to you.

This beta release offers a preview of the services we are building to support tagging and social bookmarking on and related sites. We invite you to take a look, play with its features, bookmark pages on that interest you, check out other people’s bookmarks, and offer us feedback on your experiences.

They even have a tag cloud.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Podcast Anniversary at the LPI

I just noticed I recently passed the one year mark for the podcast I do for the LPI library. I'm about ready to let episode 44 go live. So I missed a few weeks during the year. Not a bad run.

Metadata in Weblogs

What next for Semantic Blogging? by Steve Cayzer. HPL-2006-149.
Semantic Blogging is the use of rich metadata to transform blogs from simple online diaries to full participants in an information sharing ecosystem. Originally the semantic blogging vision centred around informal decentralized knowledge management, but recent developments in social network analysis, microformats, semantic desktop applications and wikis have challenged, enriched and extended this vision. In this paper I review the history of semantic blogging, present a snapshot of where we are now, including two of my current experiments. BlogAccord is an exploration of music blogging, while the Snippet Manager is an information integration portal. I conclude this paper by offering a personal take on some promising future directions.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

IoP Interview

Short inverview with me on the Institute of Physics Web site.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Getty Vocabularies at OCLC

From the OLCL press release:

OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc. and the Getty Research Institute (GRI) today announced that the Getty Vocabularies-the Art & Architecture Thesaurus, Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names, and Union List of Artist Names-will be available through the OCLC Terminologies Service.

The OCLC Terminologies Service is a Web service that was recently launched to provide libraries, museums, and archives access to a variety of thesauri through a single interface. It may be used as a standalone tool or may be used with different metadata editors, such as OCLC Connexion, CONTENTdm, or local systems.

Monday, November 06, 2006


The Network Development & MARC Standards Office Library of Congress have finalized a transformation from MARCXML to MODS 3.2. There are a few changes in version 3.2 that affect the conversion of MARC to MODS records.

The new MARC to MODS 3.2 stylesheet is here.

The new MARC to MODS 3.2 mapping is here.

Review of Revisions to FRBR Section: Definition of the Entity Expression

From the FRBR Review Group:

Invitation to participate: World-wide review of revisions to FRBR section 3.2.2, definition of the entity expression.

You are invited to comment on the attached document as part of a world-wide review. Comments are due by December 31, 2006

The Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records final report was published by IFLA in 1998. As the FRBR conceptual model is intended to be enhanced and revised when needed, the Cataloguing Section established the FRBR Review Group in 2003 with a formal mandate which includes responsibility for revisions to FRBR. This world-wide review is for the first revision to FRBR to be prepared.

One area that has led to much discussion is the meaning of the group 1 entity expression. As a result of the issues raised, the FRBR Review Group at its meeting in Berlin in 2003 created the Working Group on the Expression Entity, chaired by Anders Cato, Royal Library, Stockholm, Sweden which was charged with the task of clarifying the application of the entity expression. The Working Group held formal meetings at IFLA conferences from 2004 to 2006 and prepared revisions to the 1998 text of FRBR section 3.2.2 (pp.18-20) which defines the entity expression. Examples have been edited for consistency on pages 21 and 59 as well. Formal world-wide review of the resulting proposed revision is invited as the definition of an entity is significant to the model.

The main differences are:
  • Removal of the stipulation that very slight modifications necessarily signal that a manifestation represents a new expression,
  • Treatment of augmentations as expressions of their own separate works,
  • More careful phrasing relating to musical performances as expressions,
  • Explicitly acknowledging that cataloguing agencies will make operational decisions on expression boundaries.
The Working Group and the Review Group will consider all comments received. A final version will be presented to the Review Group for a vote, and if approved, will be presented to the IFLA Cataloguing Section Standing Committee for a vote of approval.

Please send all comments, on or before December 31, 2006, to:

Pat Riva
(Chair, FRBR Review Group)
Library Technical Services
McGill University
3459 McTavish Street
Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3A 1Y1
tel: +1-514-398-4790
fax: +1-514-398-8919


Anders Cato
(Chair, Working Group on the Expression Entity) Kungl. Biblioteket Department for Collection Development & Documentation Head, The National Bibliography, monographs Box 5039
S-102 41 Stockholm
tel: +(46) 8 463 44 29
fax: +(46) 8 463 40 04

Friday, November 03, 2006

Ariadne Cataloging Papers

Some cataloging articles in the latest issue of Ariadne.
  • RDA: A New International Standard Ann Chapman describes work on the new cataloguing code, Resource Description and Access (RDA), based on the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (AACR).
  • DC 2006: Metadata for Knowledge and Learning Julie Allinson, Rachel Heery, Pete Johnston and Rosemary Russell report on DC 2006, the sixth international conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications, held 3 - 6 October 2006.
  • Immaculate Catalogues, Indexes and Monsters Too David E. Bennett reports on the three day residential CILIP Cataloguing and Indexing Group Annual Conference, University of East Anglia, during September 2006.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Photo Album of Library Events

Here is a PR idea that may be useful when your institution hosts an event. Create a template in MS Photo Story, or a similar product for the MAC. Select the music, have some photos and title and ending shots already in place. Then let the participants drop in their certain number of photos. The transitions between photos, and basic framework would already be done, they could quickly walk out with a nice personalized slide show. This would work with cosplay, gaming night, or a visit by Tony Hawke.

At the TLA District 8 Fall Meeting I heard a talk by Mary J. McCoy on Windows Movie Maker and Photo Story and this idea came to me later.

The Librarian Graphic Novel

Another librarian in comics, this time The Librarian, from the made-for-TV movie, Return to King Solomon's Mines

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Drupalib is a site dedicated to using Drupal in libraries. Among the interesting items is using Drupal for a Digital Library Content Management System, D-Space lite as it were.


OpenFRBR is a open-source tool built using Ruby on Rails and using MySQL to FRBRize bibliographic records. Not sure just what it does. here is the set of goals:
  • OpenFRBR says it will build a complete free implementation of FRBR (Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records).
  • OpenFRBR says, "Everyone FRBRize everything."
  • OpenFRBR says that the entities, the relationships, and the user tasks are all equally important.
  • OpenFRBR says that both people and machines need good interfaces.
  • OpenFRBR says it will borrow the algorithms it can and invent the ones it must.
  • OpenFRBR says it is not an integrated library system. OpenFRBR says, "That which is not FRBR belongs to that which is not OpenFRBR."
  • OpenFRBR says it is under the MIT License.
  • OpenFRBR looks at FRAR (Functional Requirements for Authority Records) and says, "Everyone FRARize everything." When FRSAR (Functional Requirements for Subject Authority Records) is ready, OpenFRBR will look at it and say, "Everyone FRSARize everything." Everything that OpenFRBR says about FRBR it says about FRAR and FRSAR.
Seen on the FRBR weblog.


Building a Better Classification System: A Case Study. Association of Records Managers and Administrators International (ARMA), San Antonio, Texas.
In 1996 the University of Calgary developed a classification system using functional analysis. Ten years later, this system has proven that functional analysis works and that these types of systems must continue to be responsive to changes in the organization. This case study gives an overview of functional analysis in general, and how the process applied to the creation of the University Classification System (UCLASS). It also will describe how the classification system was rolled out to the university and how functional analysis can be applied to any organization.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

OCLC Interim Support for ISBN 13

OCLC has a new announcement on their treatment on ISBN-13 numbers. It is not the same as the current cataloging guidelines. "For original records, OCLC libraries should input ISBN-13 numbers into an EAN field (024, first indicator '3') rather than inputting into the ISBN field (020)." How does this impact searching, not only in OCLC but in the systems these records are downloaded into? What fields should a Z39.50 client search in an ISBN search? I'm very interrested in this topic since I'll be presenting on this at the Texas Library Association conference.

Frederick G. Kilgour

Don't forget to tune in to the Kilgour Celebration of Life service The service will take place Tuesday, October 31 from 1:30-2:30 p.m., EST

The OCLC Board of Trustees invites you to view a live webcast of a Celebration of Life Service for Frederick G. Kilgour, the founder of OCLC who died July 31, 2006. Copied from the e-mail OCLC Abstracts

Dublin Core and Social Tagging

A new Dublin Core Metadata Initiative group, the DCMI Social Tagging Community.
The DCMI Social Tagging Community is for those who are interested in investigating how the increasingly common practice of informally tagging resources, known as a process of social tagging, can contribute to the goals of the DCMI. It is clear that there is a lot of work being done that might, if slightly formalised, contribute to the quantum of DC metadata in useful ways. It is also of interest to see how tagging can point to terms that are in common use that may be of interest to those developing ontologies, thesauri and controlled vocabularies. There may be other aspects of the practice of tagging that can contribute in some way to DCMI activities.

It is not clear how tagging relates to the activities and practices of the Dublin Core general community, or how tags relate to other metadata, but these are considered interesting questions worthy of discussion.

Monday, October 30, 2006

TEKSLink Project

I've agreed to be a coordinator for the Music area of the TEKSLink Project.
The purpose of the TEKSLink Project is to provide a tangible link between the materials located in the library media center and the TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) standards used in the classroom.

The principle behind TEKSLink is simple: materials are accessed through subject headings in the automated catalog. Books about rain can be looked up by typing "rain" into a subject search. The drawback to this method is that the teacher might not think of all the subjects related to a certain TEKS standard when he or she is ready to teach it, and looking up each subject heading is tedious.

TEKSLink provides the link between the standards and subject headings. By amending the authority record of the library catalog, a teacher can search by TEKS in the catalog, and the resulting materials are available in his or her campus library.

Any school librarians in Texas should load the authority records for the Elementary Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies areas. Your catalog must be able to use authority records. More details in an article by Walter Betts in the Texas Library Journal (Summer, 2004).

Friday, October 27, 2006

TLA 2007

At ALA I enjoyed the blogger reception sponsored by OCLC. Maybe some company could do the same at the Texas Library Association annual conference. Enough folks to make it interesting.

Melvyl Recommender Project

Steve Toub of the California Digital Library has posted this to a couple of e-mail lists.

The Melvyl Recommender Project, which explored next-generation services for library catalogs, has reached its conclusion. This project was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Popular commercial services such as Google, eBay, Amazon, and Netflix have evolved quickly over the last decade to help people find what they want, developing information retrieval strategies such as usefully ranked results, spelling correction, and recommendations. Library catalogs, in contrast, have changed little and are not well equipped to meet changing needs and expectations.

The Melvyl Recommender Project explored methods and feasibility of closing this gap. An additional extension project to the Melvyl Recommender Project carried out deeper explorations into the most interesting and promising questions raised during the original project, and to add obvious missing pieces of functionality. The principal area of investigation was the impact of adding full-text objects to what had previously been a metadata-only index.

Overall findings from both portions of the project include:
  • The text-based discovery application, the eXtensible Text Framework
    (XTF) that was the backbone of the project's system (known as "Relvyl") proved capable of scaling to millions of records and hundreds of concurrent users, indicating that this is an approach worth pursuing for providing ranking, recommendation and other types of functionality with an online catalog.
  • Use of an index based single word spelling correction algorithm addressed 90 percent of misspelled single words.
  • Initial examination of faceted browsing and FRBR-like document groups indicated that each of these features could substantially improve the patron's experience of working with large result sets.
  • User assessment confirmed that users prefer relevance ranked results over unranked results, although more investigation is required to determine whether content-based ranking with or without different types of weights (based on circulation or holdings) is more effective.
  • Two types of recommendation strategies were explored:
    circulation-based ("patrons who checked this out also checked out...") and text-similarity ("More like this..."). User assessment was conducted against the first type and showed that users like getting recommendations, which are useful for performing academic tasks, and they can also serve a unique query expansion function.
  • Adjustments to keyword searching strategies, document scoring and the index-based spelling correction dictionary allowed for an effective combination of full-text and metadata only records into one system, in which neither type of record was privileged.
Much of the functionality explored in both phases of the project can be found in the Relvyl prototype.

More information about the entire project can be found on the CDL website.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Library Journal

Library Journal is offering a free subscription to U.S. library school students.
That's right, free! We are pleased to offer a free one-year subscription to Library Journal to all library students in the United States (sorry, Canada). No strings attached, no hidden fees, nothing but a full year of Library Journal delivered straight to your door. All you need is a valid student ID. Sign up.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Typo of the Day

This is for those of you who get this via e-mail or an RSS feed. In the sidebar on the Web site I've added a box for the Typo of the Day. This is not a substitute for subscribing to their weblog, but a pointer and reminder of its existence.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Librarypages Podcast

Here is a new library science podcast, Librarypages Podcast. The initial episode is a discussion on cataloging with Dr. Shawne D. Miksa. That's a good start.
Are you curious about issues that go on in the world of library science; even if it isn't your field of expertise? Then this is one place you'll want to check out.

Every other week podcast is posted to help investigate the different areas and issues in library science. Come and listen to those in the academic and professional world discuss the issues that effect us all.

This podcast is updated bi-weekly and it is completely free to listen to.

IWF Metadata Harvester

Posted to Code4lib.

I'd like to announce the publication of the IWF Metadata Harvester.

This package reads data from servers, writes it to databases, implements various kinds of searches, and writes HTML files to display the results. It currently handles data from two kinds of interface: OAI (Open Archives Initiative), which provides XML, and Z39.50, using the Pica format.

The IWF Metadata Harvester is Free Software. The program code is published under the terms of the GNU General Public License, and the documentation under those of the GNU Free Documentation License. It is available from this FTP server. I am currently looking into the possibility of having the package hosted on a website for software developers.

The IWF Metadata Harvester has been developed on a system running Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and using Visual Studio, Visual C++ .NET and Microsoft SQL Server 2000. However, I have tried to make it as portable as possible under the circumstances by avoiding the ATL and MFC types, classes, etc., as much as I could. However, it has not been possible to do without them completely. More recent code uses them less. I hope that it will be possible to use the files of SQL code with free database packages without too many alterations. I plan to port the package to GNU/Linux myself at the earliest opportunity.

I have used Donald Knuth and Silvio Levy's CWEB package for the C++ code, so that pretty-printed versions of the programs are included in the package. This directory also contains the manual, which has been written using the Texinfo package. It is available in the following formats:
DVI, PostScript, PDF, and HTML.

Because the IWF Metadata Harvester is Free Software, libraries, archives, or any other providers of metadata could make it available to users with no purchase, registration, special license arrangements, or (subject to local laws) liability.

The IWF Metadata Harvester is a work-in-progress. I would be very interested to know whether any libraries, archives, other institutions, businesses, or private persons would find it useful.

Any feedback would be much appreciated.

Laurence Finston

IWF Wissen und Medien gGmbH
Nonnenstieg 72
37075 Goettingen

Monday, October 23, 2006

Changes at AUTOCAT

This message was posted to AUTOCAT friday.

It is time for AUTOCAT to find a new home and new management.

During my recent visit to Buffalo I discussed the future of AUTOCAT with the Acting Vice-President for University Libraries and with an official in the computing center. The consensus was that we need to find a new site to host Autocat and new owner(s). If that is not possible AUTOCAT will go out of existence.

AUTOCAT: Library cataloging and discussion group began in October 1990 at the University of Vermont under the ownership of founder Nancy Keane. On April 28, 1993 it moved to the University at Buffalo and I became listowner. At that time it had 1880 subscribers in 24 countries; today it has 4600 subscribers in 42 countries.

AUTOCAT utilizes Eric Thomas' LISTSERV electronic discussion list software. Any host wishing to assume responsibility for AUTOCAT needs to have a Listserv application that will continue to support and maintain the list's database archival capabilities. The University at Buffalo currently runs Listserv version 14.5 but any version 1.8e or later (14.1, 14.2, 14.3, 14.4 or 14.5) should be OK.

Listserv is available on a wide range of computer operating systems. The hardware should be powerful enough to handle the volume of messages without getting bogged down. AUTOCAT averages around 25 posts per day with a distribution of 4600 subscribers, so we're looking at a daily traffic of about 115,000 messages.

It is also desirable that the list's archive file (dating from January 2, 1991 and currently containing over 120,000 messages) be exported to the new host and mounted as a searchable resource. AUTOCAT also has a listfile of files on various frequently-discussed topics that subscribers can retrieve; these should also be moved to the new host.

The requirements for the listowner(s) are that you should have some experience in running an electronic discussion list, have your supervisor's approval, and, of course, are interested in being a listowner. The amount of time required will vary from day to day but you should expect to spend about an hour a day on this job.

Those interested in becoming the new AUTOCAT listowners should send me an offer that contains your name, job title, e-mail address, and a brief description of your experience with running a list. Also needed is a description of your hosting environment (operating system, Listserv version, etc.) and the name, title, and e-mail address of the person responsible for managing lists at your site. All offers will be reviewed by me and by Jim Serwinowski of the UB Computing Center.

Please address your offers, questions, etc. to Copy all offers to

The deadline for receiving offers is October 27, 2006.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Rights Metadata

CCInfo is a plugin for Adobe Acrobat that lets you select and embed a Creative Commons license. Its Windows only right now.

Additions to the MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions

The codes listed below have been recently approved for use in MARC 21 records. The codes will be added to the online MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions.

The codes should not be used in exchange records until after Decenber 19, 2006. This 60-day waiting period is required to provide MARC 21 implementers time to include newly defined codes in any validation tables they may apply to the MARC fields where the codes are used.

Description Conventions

The following code is for use in subfield $e in field 040 (Cataloging Source) in Authority and Bibliographic records.


Descriptive cataloging of rare materials (Books). (Washington, DC: Cataloging Distribution Service, Library of Congress) [use after December 19, 2006]
Term, Name, Title Sources

The following code is for use in subfield $2 in Bibliographic and Community information records in 6xx fields and in subfield $f in field 040 (Cataloging Source) in Authority records.


Soubor vecnych autorit Narodni knihovny CR = CZENAS thesaurus: a list of subject terms used in the National Library of the Czech Republic (Praha : Narodni knihovna Cseke republiky) [use after December 19, 2006]

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Archie at the Library

The gang from Riverdale visit the Salt Lake City Library in issue 570 of Archie.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Has Cataloguing Become Too Simple?

Has cataloguing become too simple? : why it matters for cataloguers, catalogues and clients by Paul Staincliffe appeared in New Zealand Libraries 49(10).
Modern catalogues have become far removed from their original ideals, and cataloguing standards have declined. Nineteenth-century arguments about whether cataloguing is an art or a science have been overtaken by concerns about a 'dumbing-down' of quality to meet the perceived needs of modern library customers, and by debate about the direction of resources towards digitisation in the clamour for access. Despite rumours of the impending demise of MARC, the format remains standard and is expected to prevail into the foreseeable future. This article has been adapted from a paper delivered at the LIANZA Conference in Napier, N.Z. in September 2003.

Additions to MARC Code List for Languages

Additions to MARC Code List for Languages

The following codes have been approved for use in the international language code standard, ISO 639-2 (Codes for the Representation of Names of Languages--Part 2: alpha-3 code) and are also being added to the MARC Code List for Languages.

New codeLanguage namePreviously coded
Subscribers can anticipate receiving MARC records reflecting these changes in all distribution services no earlier than January 17, 2007.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006


Here's an idea, not even half-baked, how about peer-to-peer (P2P) networks of OPACs? Only available items would display. I'd get to pick the institutions I'd have display and whether to display non-circulating items. Something like Limewire. Something visible to TrustyFiles. Should have sent this off to Hackfest.

Koha 2.2.6

Koha 2.2.6 has been released and is available.

Koha is the first Open-Source Integrated Library System.

Koha is a full-featured open-source ILS. Developed initially in New Zealand by Katipo Communications Ltd and first deployed in January of 2000 for Horowhenua Library Trust, it is currently maintained by a team of software providers and library technology staff from around the globe.

Koha 2.2.6 is more than 250,000 lines of code, contributed by about 50 different developers (46, +translators).

The 2.2.6 version of Koha is a mature product, with a lot of nice features.

More than 100 libraries are registered as users, and we are sure that at least 300 libraries use the software. There are 2 projects derived from Koha.

Monday, October 16, 2006

UDC in subject gateways

UDC in subject gateways: experiment or opportunity? by Aida Slavic will appear in Knowledge Organization.
The paper gives a short overview of the history of use of UDC in Internet subject gateways (SGs) with an English interface, from 1993 to 2006. There were in total, nine quality controlled SGs that were functional for shorter or longer periods of time. Their typology and functionality is described. Quality SGs have evolved and the role of classification has changed accordingly from supporting subject organization on the interface and automatic categorization of resources, towards supporting a semantic linking, control and vocabulary mapping between different indexing systems in subject hubs and federated SGs. In this period, many SGs ceased to exist and little information remains available regarding their status. SGs currently using UDC, for some part of their resource organization, do not use a UDC subject hierarchy at the interface and its role in resource indexing has become more difficult to observe. Since 2000, UDC has become more prevalent in East European SGs, portals and hubs, which are outside the scope of this research. This paper is an attempt to provide a record on this particular application of UDC and to offer some consideration of the changes in requirements when it comes to the use of library classification in resource discovery.

Use of the Universal Decimal Classification

Use of the Universal Decimal Classification: a worldwide survey by Aida Slavic will appear in the Journal of Documentation.
A general overview with up-to-date information on UDC use worldwide.... The interest shown for using UDC in the organization of digital collections, information exchange and cross domain and cross collection resource discovery depends on accurate knowledge of its actual usage worldwide. This gives a measure of its global importance and verifies its credentials as an indexing standard. This research, which attempted wider and more systematic coverage than previous surveys, should help clarify the status of UDC and its potential use in the networked environment. Originality/value - Up-to-date information on the presence of the UDC system across countries and languages.

Search Engines and Resource Discovery on the Web

Search Engines and Resource Discovery on the Web: Is Dublin Core an Impact Factor? by Mehdi Safari appears in Webology 2(2).
This study evaluates the effectiveness of the Dublin Core metadata elements on the retrieval of web pages in a suite of six search engines, AlltheWeb, AltaVista, Google, Excite, Lycos, and WebCrawler. The effectiveness of four elements, including title, creator, subject and contributor, that concentrate on resource discovery was experimentally evaluated. Searches were made of the keywords extracted from web pages of the Iranian International Journal of Science, before and after metadata implementation. In each search, the ranking of the first specific reference to the exact web page was recorded. The comparison of results and statistical analysis did not reveal a significant difference between control and experimental groups in the retrieval ranks of the web pages.

Metadata and the Web

Metadata and the Web by Mehdi Safari appears in Webology 1(2).
The rapid increase in the number and variety of resources on the World Wide Web has made the problem of resource description and discovery central to discussions about the efficiency and evolution of this medium. The inappropriateness of traditional schemas of resource description for web resources has encouraged significant activities recently on defining web-compatible schemas named "metadata". While conceptually old for library and information professionals, metadata has taken more significant and paramount role than ever before and is considered as the golden key for the next evolution of the web in the form of semantic web. This article is intended to be a brief introduction to metadata and tries to present its overview in the web.

Open Archives Initiative

Object Reuse and Exchange (ORE) is a new two-year effort by the Open Archives Initiative, began in October 2006. The work is funded by the generous support by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundationi. ORE is co-coordinated by Herbert Van de Sompel and Carl Lagoze.

ORE will develop specifications that allow distributed repositories to exchange information about their constituent digital objects. These specifications will include approaches for representing digital objects and repository services that facilitate access and ingest of these representations. The specifications will enable a new generation of cross-repository services that leverage the intrinsic value of digital objects beyond the borders of hosting repositories.

ALCTS non-English access report available for comment

ALCTS non-English access report available for comment. The 70 page report covers UNICODE, sorting different languages and scripts, committees and areas to be studied. There is also an executive summary available.
The Association for Library Collections & Technical Services (ALCTS) is pleased to announce the availability of a report on providing access to non-English materials in libraries.

The report was the result of action introduced at the 2005 ALA Annual Membership Meeting and ALA Council on the topic. The ALCTS Task Force on Non-English Access, chaired by Beth Picknally Camden, was charged in October 2005 by the ALCTS Board of Directors to review past and current activities in providing access to materials in non-English languages, and make recommendations for future actions by ALCTS and others.

The Task Force gathered information from ALCTS and American Library Association groups, the Library of Congress, the bibliographic utilities (OCLC and RLG), other library organizations, and library systems and authority vendors. The task force found that substantial activity has taken place over many years to address the complex issues associated with multiscript and multilingual access. The Task Force report also includes recommendations for specific actions concerning technical specifications, cataloging guidelines, continuing education, communication, and staffing. These findings and recommendations are summarized in the report of the Task Force available on the ALCTS web site:

If you are interested in commenting on the findings in the report, a comment form is also available on the ALCTS web site. Comments should be submitted by December 1, 2006.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Podcasting Tool

Here is a free podcasting tool that may help some in the podcasting community, the Levelator.
It's software that runs on Windows or OS X (universal binary) that adjusts the audio levels within your podcast or other audio file for variations from one speaker to the next, for example. It's not a compressor, normalizer or limiter although it contains all three. It's much more than those tools, and it's much simpler to use. The UI is dirt-simple: Drag-and-drop any WAV or AIFF file onto The Leveler's application window, and a few moments later you'll find a new version which just sounds better.
So it wouldn't help What's New at the Lunar and Planetary Institute Library. I'm the only speaker. But for a show like Talking With Talis, where they have several guests, some on Skype some on the phone, it could make their post-production task easier.

Thursday, October 12, 2006


Greenstone v2.71 has been released. A feature release containing lots and lots of improvements and new functionality.
Greenstone is a suite of software for building and distributing digital library collections. It provides a new way of organizing information and publishing it on the Internet or on CD-ROM. Greenstone is produced by the New Zealand Digital Library Project at the University of Waikato, and developed and distributed in cooperation with UNESCO and the Human Info NGO. It is open-source, multilingual software, issued under the terms of the GNU General Public License....

The aim of the Greenstone software is to empower users, particularly in universities, libraries, and other public service institutions, to build their own digital libraries....

The complete Greenstone interface, and all documentation, is available in English, French, Spanish, Russian and Kazakh. Greenstone also has interfaces in many other languages.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Typo of the Day

With input from participants in the electronic distribution list LIBTYPOS-L, Terry Ballard has created the Typo of the Day Blog. This may sound humorous, but it isn't a joke! Rather, it is a new tool in cooperative quality control.

Here are suggested steps for making use of the blog. If you are a library administrator or supervisor, please designate an individual to monitor it on a daily basis and take these steps.

  1. Consult the blog and copy the typographical error featured for that day.
  2. In your local catalog, search to see if records are retrieved using that character string as key.
  3. Investigate whether any bibliographic records retrieved actually have the typographical error in the source. For instance, records having typos followed by [sic] or [i.e. plus the corrected form] should NOT be adjusted. If not, proceed to step 7.
  4. If such indications are not present, use judgment to determine whether consultation of the bibliographic item is necessary, or whether you will edit the record to correct the typo without viewing the source.
  5. If you determine that the source contains the typo, add the notation [sic] or add the corrected form using [i.e.].
  6. If you determine that the source does not contain the typo, edit the bibliographic record to correct it.
  7. Congratulate yourself and your colleagues for helping to maintain your database at a high quality level!
Your cooperation in this matter will be greatly appreciated, particularly because not only are your local records affected, but others consulting consortial databases looking for typos will be happy to see fewer of them. Participants in the LIBTYPOS-L project, for instance, frequently consult the databases of OhioLINK and SEO Library Center to determine how widespread are the instances of particular errors.

More information about LIBTYPOS-L. Subscriptions are available. The list operates in association with the web sites Typographical Errors in Library Databases and More Typographical Errors in Library Databases maintained by Terry Ballard and Phalbe Henriksen respectively.

From an email by Ian Fairclough. Don't forget to check your authority files as well as your bib records.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

OpenURL Question

Since we do not yet have an OpenURL resolver for the Institute I've not messed with the standard as much as I'd like. We have a full-text database of works from our conferences and workshops. What would it take to make it a workable ending place of an OpenURL request? We are not the search site, nor the citation database being searched but the site they are sent to for the full text. If we enable SRU, would that be enough? How about if we are OAI-PMH comilant? Any tools to drop in front of the database to facilite this? Thanks.

Questionable Content

Questionable Content a on-line comic strip, is running a story about a character starting to work in a library. Love the t-shirt of the circ person "She blinded me with library science".

Monday, October 09, 2006

Corporate Body Publications

Using CWA to Frame an Investigation into the Use of Corporate Body Publications by Kari Holland appears in the latest issue of the Bulletin of asis&t.
This article describes a study that looks at how researchers in forest science, oceanography and fishery science search for and use publications from corporate bodies. The term publication is understood in a broad sense, incorporating digital formats and websites. The study is a qualitative study that uses critical realism and cognitive work analysis (CWA) to frame the research question and to inform interview questions and analysis. This paper focuses on how CWA is used to guide the study. The primary purpose of this particular study is to produce recommendations for the design of information systems related to the structure and representation of data about corporate body publications. After all, the content of the information system is vital to the success of a search.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


I've been asked to do a poster at the elementary division of the Texas Music Educators Assocation convention this year. Last year I did one on fine art resources at the American Memory Project. Any suggestions for what I should do this year? Thanks.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Talis Source

Talis Source looks interesting. A union catalog (catalogue) of UK libraries. They freely accept uploaded records, no need for membership. If you are reading this in the UK consider contributing to the effort. How long before they start a US or North American union catalog? I'm ready to contribute.

Beyond the OPAC

MP3 audio and PowerPoints are already available from the Beyond the OPAC : future directions for Web-based catalogues meeting. The presentations are:
  • Beyond the OPAC : future directions for web-based catalogues by Martha Yee
  • The well connected catalogue by Patricia Scott, Denise Tobin and Helen Attar
  • Setting a new standard : Resource Description and Access (RDA) by Deirdre Kiorgaard
  • The potential impact of RDA on OPAC displays by Ann Huthwaite and Philip Hider
  • OPACs and the real information marketplace : why providing a mediocre product at a high price no longer works by Lloyd Sokvitne
  • Seeding search engines with data from the Australian National Bibliographic Database (ANBD) by Tony Boston
  • Applying FRBR to library catalogues : a review of existing FRBRization projects by Martha Yee
  • Managing OPACs : approaches to the process of OPAC change and development (panel discussion) with Lisa Billingham, Del Shiers, David Wells, and Shane White
Some also have the text of the presentation available. I'm downloading all the MP3s. Thanks to Peta for bringing this to my attention.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Mark's Toolkit for Libraries

Here is a tool for MARC that is being updated and is getting a new name, but the initials will stay the same, MTL.
The MARC Template Library is currently is the process of being renamed (to Mark's Toolkit for Libraries) and completely rewritten. Expect to see lots more here soon. 4 October 2006.

The MARC Template Library is a C++ API (using C++ templates and STL) for reading, writing and processing MARC records. I (Mark Basedow) am using this project to improve my knowledge of the C++ Standard Template Library.

The MTL has currently been compiled and tested with Microsoft Visual C++ Version 6 (sp5), Borland Free Command Line Tools 5.5, and the Mingw compiler (using Bloodshed Dev-C++ 4) on Windows 98 SE. It should work on other platforms with a few changes to the make files.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Toward a 21st Century Library Catalog

Toward a 21st Century Library Catalog by Kristin Antelman, Emily Lynema, and Andrew K. Pace (2006) appears in Information Technology and Libraries 25(3):pp. 128-139.
Library catalogs have represented stagnant technology for close to twenty years. Moving toward a next-generation catalog, North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries purchased Endeca's Information Access Platform to give its users relevance-ranked keyword search results and to leverage the rich metadata trapped in the MARC record to enhance collection browsing. This paper discusses the new functionality that has been enabled, the implementation process and system architecture, assessment of the new catalog's performance, and future directions.

Metadata Schema Registry

A Metadata Schema Registry as a Tool to Enhance Metadata Interoperability by Mitsuharu Nagamori and Shigeo Sugimoto appears in the latest issue of TCDL Bulletin.
Interoperability is one of the most crucial issues for the metadata and digital library communities. Metadata registries are formal systems that can disclose authoritative information about semantics and data elements to realize semantic interoperability of metadata across domains and cultures. Registries typically store the semantics of metadata elements, maintain information about any local extensions, and provide mappings to other metadata schemas. This article describes the basic requirements and functions for a metadata schema registry. The primary function of a metadata schema registry is to provide reference descriptions of metadata terms for both human users and machines. Based upon our experiences in developing software tools with metadata schema registries, e.g., subject gateways and metadata databases, we have learned that a metadata schema registry has the potential to provide a wider range of services based on metadata schemas. This article also describes some functional extensions to our metadata schema registry in Tsukuba, Japan.

Day Against DRM

Access to the physical and intellectual contents of materials is a cornerstone of our profession. DRM can block both. Today is the Day Against DRM.

A personal experience to show just how annoying DRM can be. I recently bought Neal Young's CD Road Rock. It won't play on my PC nor can I rip the tunes. I do most of my music listening using my MP3 player or using Winamp on the PC. Both those are blocked. My use of this CD, which I paid for, is very hampered. I wonder if the place I bought it from will take back an open CD because the manufacturer broke it. now I'm thnking of searching 2600 for a DRM cracking tool. They are pushing folks to the dark side.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

RIP RedLightGreen

On November 5th the RedLightGreen service will end. It will be missed.

Monday, October 02, 2006

FRBR Expression

The FRBR weblog reports that the definition for expression has been clarified. The committee is seeking comments about the changes. All the details and links at the FRBR page.

Online Indexing

Complementary or Discrete Contexts in Online Indexing: A Comparison of User, Creator and Intermediary Keywords by Kipp, Margaret E. I. (2006) will appear in Proceedings Canadian Association for Information Science, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

This paper (forthcoming in the Canadian Journal of Information and Library Science) and presented at the CAIS Conference examines the context of online indexing from the viewpoint of three different groups: users, authors, and intermediaries. User, author and intermediary keywords were collected from journal articles tagged on citeulike and analysed. Descriptive statistics and thesaural term comparison shows that there are important differences in the context of keywords from the three groups.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Addition to the MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions

The code listed below has been recently approved for use in MARC 21 records. The code will be added to the online MARC Code Lists for Relators, Sources, Description Conventions.

The code should not be used in exchange records until after November 29, 2006. This 60-day waiting period is required to provide MARC 21 implementers time to include newly defined codes in any validation tables they may apply to the MARC fields where the codes are used. Other Sources

The following code is for use in subfield $a in field 042 (Authentication Code) in Authority and Bibliographic records.


British Library derived cataloging [use only after November 29, 2006]

Rights and Access

The Lunar E-Library is a good idea gone wrong. From their announcement it looks like all the full-text material is copyright free.
This DVD knowledgebase contains 1100 (.PDF) items with an emphasis on documents produced during the Apollo/Saturn era. Full text is available for 870 documents, and abstracts with source information are included for 230 documents that are copyrighted or limited distribution materials.
However, since they did not use open source or free software there is a software agreement that limits the distribution to NASA centers and NASA contractors in the US. If they had used Greenstone, or something like it, it could have been freely distributed. All that work, with so little to show for it. A shame. They should have asked someone at their library.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Updated MODS User Guidelines

LC has made available a revision of the MODS user guidelines to include the new elements in version 3.2.

The major changes are:

  1. Addition of 3 attributes to location url (note, access, usage)
  2. Addition of 2 enumerated values to physicalDescription digitalOrigin
    (digitized microfile, digitized other analog)
  3. Addition of 3 attributes under part (ID, type, order)
  4. Addition of subelement genre under subject

Movers & Shakers

It's that time of year again: The editors of Library Journal need your help in identifying the emerging leaders in the library world. The sixth annual Movers & Shakers supplement will profile 50-plus up-and-coming individuals from across the United States and Canada who are innovative, creative, and making a difference. From librarians to vendors to others who work in the library field, Movers & Shakers 2007 will celebrate the new professionals who are moving our libraries ahead. The deadline for submissions is November 1, 2006. Use the online form or, if you prefer, print out the PDF and return it to Ann Kim at LJ, 360 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10010, or fax to 646-746-6734.

Online Information Retrieval

JavaScript tools for online information retrieval by Gamage, Ruwan and Dong, Hui (2006).
JavaScript has a comparatively long history as an online information retrieval tool. During the last decade SilverPlatter's popular WebSPIRS 4.0 started using JavaScript for its search functions. International Children's Digital Library is a current system that applies JavaScript for category based information retrieval. However, JavaScript capabilities for quick browsing and searching small collections is under utilized in light of advanced server-side technologies. Focussing on search engines using data arrays in scripts, this paper tries to justify one possible reason behind this - high response time for the starting search. To cope up with the situation, the paper introduces a model for interface design. Also it reveals that the script search is superior to server side techniques in terms to response time, when the user's session is several searches long.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

SRU Record Update

Get your comments in by October 10 concerning the draft of the SRU Record Update.
The Record Update service allows for remote maintenance from and administration of records within a compliant database. It has a simple and extensible mechanism for this, a single request/response pair that allows for creation, replacing and deleting records and metadata about those records.

The need for such a protocol has been expressed by several groups, but may benefit many. In particular, it is required for datasets which are maintained by distributed collaboration and contribution such as union catalogues, local history databases, book review databases and so on. Going further, it also allows many clients to be created for one service rather than a very tightly linked client/server relationship.

Although the protocol is being developed under the SRU 'umbrella', there is no need to implement SRU. It would be perfectly feasible to implement Record Update in order to maintain a database served only via OAI, or only via a proprietary HTML interface. To contrast OAI and record update, OAI is a pull mechanism to update databases and is used generally for scheduled batch processing, while record update is a push mechanism intended for more interactive use.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Web Services in the Library

New from NISO, Best Practices for Designing Web Services in the Library Context.
This paper has given an overview of the issues involved in implementing and designing web services that may be of use in the library environment. As web services become a more common tool for communication between applications, unforeseen library-specific uses may arise. The intent of this paper is to explain briefly some of the decisions involved in finding, designing, implementing, and using web services

Cataloging Errors

A catalogue of errors: Libraries' missing millions by Marc Abrahams appeared in the Tuesday September 26, 2006 issue of The Guardian.
How many books written in seemingly obscure languages are misfiled and languishing unfindable in libraries? Joyce Flynn's experience at Harvard suggests the answer is: a lot.
Seen on Libtypos-L as posted by Jeffrey.

Avanti MircoLCS

Avanti MircoLCS version 1.0.1 is now available. MicroLCS is an OPAC and cataloging system written in Java. Version 1.0.1 includes a complete User Guide and a simplified install procedure for Windows, among other tweaks and improvements.

MicroLCS can be downloaded from the project website.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Web 2.0 Audio

A nice group of MP3 files discussing Web 2.0 in the context of chemistry from the recent ACS meeting in Atlanta.
  • Social software: What, why, and how? / Beth Thomsett-Scott
  • Weaving the Web 2.0: RSS and the future of chemical/science information / Teri M. Vogel
  • Innovative methods of course delivery in Chemical Informatics and Chemistry / Brian Maurice Lynch Lai Im Lancaster
  • Open access and blogging: How academic research is transforming / Barbara A Greenman
  • On the go with CHM 125, ECON 210, PHYS 218, and BIOL 205: Coursecasting at a large research university / Jeremy R Garritano David B. Eisert
  • Blog applications in the classroom and beyond / Randy Reichardt
  • Wikipedia: Social revolution or information disaster? / Martin A. Walker
  • A case study: ACS BIOT web seminars / Jonathan L. Coffman

Merrill's Classification Code

A Code for Classifiers: Whatever Happened to Merrill's Code? by Coleman, Anita Sundaram (2004)
This is a preprint of the article published in Knowledge Organization 31 (3): 161-176. The work titled "Code for Classifiers" by William Stetson Merrill is examined. The development of Merrill's Code over a period of 27 years, 1912-1939 is traced by examining bibliographic, attribution, conceptual and contextual differences. The general principles advocated, the differences between variants, and three controversial features of the Code: 1) the distinction between classifying vs. classification, 2) borrowing of the bibliographic principle of authorial intention, and 3) use of Dewey Decimal class numbers for classified sequence of topics, are also discussed. The paper reveals the importance of the Code in its own time, the complexities of its presentation and assessment by its contemporaries, and it's status today.

Image Rights Metadata

Creative Commons has announced enhancements to a tool for embedding rights metadata in image files.
A couple weeks ago we announced a Java tool for embedding XMP metadata in PDFs. Now Jon Phillips has taken the pjmt PHP library and wrapped it with simple command line an library methods for embedding XMP metadata in JPEG image files. Obviously this would be useful for integration with web-based photo sites. Get the code from the xmp/jpeg-php module of the cctools subversion repository on sourceforge.

Also see our XMP overview page.

OpenURL Referrer Extension for Firefox

Version 2.1 of OCLC Openly Informatics' OpenURL Referrer Extension for Firefox has been released. It adds support for Google News Archive. This is free and available for download. The documentation also shows support for Google Scholar and COinS.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Vodcasting in Texas

I just found out that Geek Briefs by Neal and Cali Lewis is done in Dallas. We should get them for TLA. How cool would that be? They could give a talk and maybe tape a show at the conference. Or maybe AMIGOS could get them to do a workshop in Dallas?
Geek Brief TV is a Video Podcast with news about tech tools and toys featuring Cali Lewis. The format is fast, fun, fresh and flirty.

We released the first Geek Brief on December 23, 2005, having never done anything in video production, on camera or off. Within six months, we're having millions of downloads a month, and we keep growing! At exactly our five month mark, we were able to announce that, thanks to PodShow, we quit our day jobs and are now podcasting full time. It's an amazing time to be alive with this new medium!

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

Friday, September 22, 2006


XML-Sitemaps lets you:
  • Create an XML sitemap format that can be submitted to Google to help them crawl your website better.
  • Create a Text sitemap to submit to Yahoo.
  • Create a ROR sitemap, which is an independant XML format for any search engine.
  • Generate an HTML site map to allow human visitors to easily navigate on your website.
Our Sitemap Generator now supports sitemaps in ROR format (both Free Online version and Unlimited Standalone generator). ROR Sitemaps (ROR - Resources of a Resource) is an independent XML format for describing any object of your content in a generic fashion, so any search engine can better understand that content.

Additionally to Google sitemaps and Yahoo sitemaps, the generator also will optionally create HTML sitemap for human visitors with the whole site structure.

Our online sitemap generator now creates not only an xml sitemap (that is submitted to Google), but also a sitemap in text format. You can use the text sitemap to submit to Yahoo!

Seen on CommandN


APIFinder is a growing index of various application programming interfaces (APIs). An API provides a set of instructions that you can use to make new software interoperate with existing applications. This site is also a place to share ideas and advice on how to use APIs in your programming. This site grows in part through community contribution so please submit your favorite APIs as well as articles and API-related projects today!

I didn't find unAPI in their collection. I did spot ISBNdb, a tool for using an ISBN database.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Metadata Registries

A Metadata Registry from Vocabularies Up: The NSDL Registry Project by Diane I. Hillmann, Stuart A. Sutton, Jon Phipps, and Ryan Laundry will be presented at the International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications.
The NSDL Metadata Registry is designed to provide humans and machines with the means to discover, create, access and manage metadata schemes, schemas, application profiles, crosswalks and concept mappings. This paper describes the general goals and architecture of the NSDL Metadata Registry as well as issues encountered during the first year of the project's implementation.

Cataloging at the University of California

Medeiros, Norm (2006) Good Enough is Good Enough: Cataloging Lessons from the University of California Libraries. OCLC Systems & Services 22(3):pp. 155-158.
This article reviews the recent report, "Rethinking How We Provide Bibliographic Services for the University of California." It discusses some of the report’s recommendations in light of similar initiatives underway. The article includes comments from John Riemer, Chair of the Bibliographic Services Task Force, the group responsible for the report. The article concludes by affirming many of the suggestions detailed in the report.

TEI Annual Members' Meeting

The 2006 TEI Members' meeting will be held on Friday, October 27 and Saturday, October 28th, at the Hotel Grand Pacific in Victoria, Canada, and hosted by the University of Victoria. The two-day meeting features keynote speakers Greg Crane, Liam Quin, and Steve Ramsay, as well as a poster and demonstration session, presentations on TEI research and projects, meetings of the TEI Special Interest Groups, and the TEI business meeting and elections. The meeting is open to the public, and free for TEI members and subscribers. The attendance fee for non-members is the same as the cost of an individual subscribership.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Microformats Book

Now available from O'Reilly, Using Microformats by Brian Suda. Is a 56 page PDF file a Book?
Microformats let you share structured information in HTML web pages. Although the information is visible to human readers--as it should be--software can also extract structured information. This Short Cut is a general introduction to the history of microformats and an explanation why these ideas are rocketing to the forefront of technology. It includes information and examples on how to add all of the popular microformats used and consumed today to your documents. Also included is discussion of where the idea behind microformats originated and why the microformats process is so open for everyone to contribute. With millions of instances of microformats on the Web, isn't it about time to learn what it's all about?

Monday, September 18, 2006

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Tuesday September 19th 2006 is Talk Like a Pirate Day. If you want to catalog like a pirate here is a start: Ahoy, includes bibliographical refarnces Gar, Where can I find a bottle o'rum?