ALCTS CCS Cataloging Norms Discussion Group — “How catalogers and system developers work creatively with metadata”

ALCTS CCS Cataloging Norms Discussion Group — “How Catalogers and System Developers Work Creatively with Metadata”
Washington State Convention & Trade Cent room: Room 615
Saturday, 1/20/2007, 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM

The Cataloging Norms Discussion Group consisted of three separate presentations. First, Terry Reese (Digital Production Unit Head, Oregon State University Libraries) presented “Institutional Repositories: Dspace MARC record generation.” The majority of the presentation discussed MarcEdit, a tool developed by Terry that was developed out of the need to create MARC records from Dublin Core records for electronic student theses. MarcEdit consists of two components: an OAI harvester that resolves character encoding issues and uses XSLT to convert records between Dublin Core and MARC; and a macro engine that looks very much like OML and checks records to filter out subject headings that are not based on LCSH and corrects date and other data formatting differences between the Dublin Core record and MARC requirements. For those institutions that have a need to convert records between metadata schemes, this would be a very good tool to streamline the process and enable staff to work on other projects than records conversion.

Lai-Yung Hsiung (Interim Head of Technical Services, University of California, Santa Cruz) then presented “What’s in a Number? Its Increasing Relevance in the Online Environment,” a more theoretical presentation regarding the role of numbers in the cataloging realm. Lai-Yung discussed object identifiers and record numbers, the problems inherent with both types of numbers and strategies to deal with those problems. She argues that there is such a thing as a “good number” and that such a number is unique, persistent, widely used, interoperable, independent of systems, simple to assign and conforms to standards. After an application of these standards to common numbering systems, Lai-Yung found that the OCLC number was the best available number for library usage. She argues that as WorldCat increases in functionality and is being utilized by Google, the usage of OCLC numbers is growing in libraries. Moving from the theoretical, Lai-Yung then spoke about a project she conducted at UCSC to address the problem of non-OCLC numbers being assigned to the OCLC number area.

Finally, Casey Bisson (Information Architect, Plymouth State University) presented “Metadata & Faceted Searching”. Casey has designed an open source faceted search and browsing system based on WordPress. The OPAC enables successful user-created keyword searching through metadata aggregations. For example, a keyword search for “Sociology of Education” leads the user to “Educational Sociology,” the LC Subject Heading. It currently has difficulty aggregating comma-separated subject headings but this may be resolved in a future release. What is most intriguing about WPopac is that it is not just for MARC. It can be used for any metadata scheme that can be parsed, including XML, Dublin Core and flickr. WPopac is currently live at Plymouth State University ( ), Cook Memorial Library and Beyond Brown Paper ( ). Beyond Brown Paper is worth a look—their catalog is powered by flickr tags instead of the more traditional MARC or XML schema.

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