Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Program for Cooperative Cataloging announces RDA training for BIBCO libraries

BIBCO institutions will be interested to know that the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC) has developed a training plan for RDA descriptive cataloging in the context of the PCC BIBCO Standard Record for textual monographs. BIBCO catalogers are urged to work through Modules 1-4 of the online RDA training available from LC at Once catalogers have completed the online modules, BIBCO institutions should register for a series of four live webinars being offered by the PCC Secretariat. The webinars  are question-and-answer sessions with experienced RDA catalogers, based on questions submitted in advance by the trainees. The webinars begin in early December and the PCC Secretariat intends to offer them on a monthly basis during 2013 as needed by the BIBCO community. Following completion of the training, BIBCO institutions will undergo review of their RDA cataloging by an RDA-trained PCC cataloger. RDA NACO training and record review are prerequisites for BIBCO training.

Monday, November 19, 2012

News about romanization tables!

Catalogablog reports that the Belorusian and Arabic romanization tables have recently been revised. Both tables (along with all LC romanization tables) are available on the LC webpage, ALA-LC Romanization Tables.

IS RDA the only way?

The ultimate goal of the Cooperative Cataloging Rules Wiki is a bit on the radical side. It does not declare that no changes are needed, but rather that the changes needed are much deeper and far more profound than the superficial changes suggested by RDA. In addition, these changes can come from the cataloging community as a whole, instead of being decided by a few libraries in the most important libraries and trickling down to everyone else. The entire Web2.0 movement allows these sorts of grass-level initiatives now and all kinds of new tools can be built.

James Weinheimer, in his blog First Thus, takes the stance that 1) it is going to be very expensive for every library to implement RDA 2) RDA is based on FRBR, which is of unproven usefulness for library patrons, if not for catalogers and 3) RDA doesn't actually do very much other than muck around with 300 fields and spell out a few words which were formerly abbreviated.

I think he's right and he's wrong. The point of RDA, as I understand it, is to free up the data catalogers have been collecting forever so that it can be grabbed by other users and, likewise, to make it easier for catalogers to grab data collected by others to plop into our catalogs.

I do think that his idea that RDA does not go far enough is interesting. I also think his point that catalogers can do it for themselves actually is the point of RDA.
In any case, interesting to think about.

Getty Institute compiles a Cultural Objects Name Authority online

The Getty Institute is compiling a Cultural Objects Name Authority (CONA) online, a new authority file for works of art and architecture.
CONA is a structured vocabulary containing authority records for cultural works, including architecture and movable works such as paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, manuscripts, photographs, textiles, ceramics, furniture, other visual media such as frescoes and architectural sculpture, performance art, archaeological artifacts, and various functional objects that are from the realm of material culture and of the type collected by museums. The focus of CONA is works cataloged in scholarly literature, museum collections, visual resources collections, archives, libraries, and indexing projects with a primary emphasis on art, architecture, or archaeology.

CONA is not exactly an authority file as we think of one, however, but a database that gives works of art and architecture unique numerical IDs, linking these IDs to all kinds of information.
The focus of each CONA record is a work of art or architecture. In the database, each work's record (also called a subject in the database, not to be confused with iconographical depicted subjects of art works) is identified by a unique numeric ID. Linked to each work's record are titles/names, current location, dates, other fields, related works, a parent (that is, a position in the hierarchy), sources for the data, and notes. The coverage of CONA is global, from prehistory through the present. Names or titles may be current, historical, and in various languages.
Fields in the authorty record will give information about alternate titles, LC Authority File headings, history, date of creation, size, provenance. A sample record for van Gogh's Irises is provided in the description linked above.

From Catalogablog

Prototyping Library Websites

Ellis, Shaun, and Maureen Callhan. "Prototyping as a Process for Improved User Experience with Library and Archives Websites." Code4Lib Journal (18)(3 October 2012). At:

This paper describes how the prototyping process is used in redesigning the Princeton University Library Finding Aids website. The librarians used a flexible subset of Agile practices (for software development) based around measurable goals, iterative prototypes, meetings with institutional stakeholders, and “discount usability testing”. The end result is a much-improved library website and user experience.

Friday, November 9, 2012

MarcEdit adds RDA support

The latest update to MarcEdit adds an enhancement called "RDA Helper".  RDA Helper is an in development tool that provides the ability to "RDA’ize" AACR2 records. It is intended to ease the transition between AACR2 and RDA, especially when working with vendor batch records and legacy data. 

The functions of RDA Helper allow users to batch auto process records, adding field data including the 3XX fields.  It includes an option to evaluate the 260/264 fields, breaking out copyright dates as appropriate.  RDA Helper can also expand abbreviations.

RDA Helper includes an automatic GMD generation function for libraries wanting to continue use of GMDs.

More information and video demonstrating these new functions is available at Terry Reese's MarcEdit page.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

SkyRiver news

SkyRiver Launches eMARC Express to Streamline e-Material Acquisitions .  [SkyRiver] SkyRiver announced the launch of a new record delivery service called eMARC Express. eMARC Express introduces a new approach to efficient processing of e-materials at an attractive price. This new service provides MARC files for e-materials ordered from OverDrive and 3M Cloud Library.
Full Announcement:

ProQuest and SSRN

ProQuest and SSRN address Scholars' demand for  freshest research .  [Proquest] ProQuest and the Social Science Research Network (SSRN) are dramatically increasing access to the organization's working papers through ProQuest's popular ABI/INFORM business information product as well as ProQuest Central and a variety of niche databases. Working papers will double to more than 100,000 by the close of 2012 and will grow to more than 150,000 over the next three years.
Full Announcement: