Friday, June 29, 2007

American Libraries

I wonder how much they had to pay for royalties on the Johnny Cash song?
Enjoy the video:100 years of American Libraries in just over 3 minutes: a rapid-fire history of the official American Library Association magazine.


Saturday, June 23, 2007

Inaccessibility of Library Data

Karen Schneider's recent post to the ALA Tech Source blog "Out of the Secret Garden: The RDA/DC Initiative" is very insightful and passionate. She argues that our gazillions of library records cannot be integrated with cool web 2.0 tools because the data is not readable and it's our own fault because we insisted on keeping our old fashioned library-specific data based on our arcane cataloging rules.

I always thought that AACR2 rules were quite crazy but I also thought that they had evolved with careful thinking and a wondrous intellectual process that allowed library data to be shared across institutions. Our problem now as a library profession is that it is imperative to migrate our data to the 'Semantic Web' not only using natural language, but also using a format that can be read and used by software agents. (See Aaron Swartz' article for a better understanding of the Semantic Web.)

This is basically why is beating us at our own game. We desperately need our catalogers to understand and deal with this complex issue so that our library records do not become extinct.

Judy Gressel

New Words Added to Oxford English Dictionary

It's about time that the word "high-maintenance" was added to the Oxford English Dictionary. So many friends and relatives are high-maintenance that their pictures should be added to the definition area. Maybe that's why they also added the word chill-pill.

My husband's favorite word "argh" has been added. I guess I shouldn't be surprised about the word "high-maintenance" when they finally just added the word "Internet"! Who are these people and what planet are they living on?

Friday, June 22, 2007

WorldCat for Sharing Lists of Books

Today I created a list in World Cat of Recommended Reads:
In order to set this up you have to create an account in WorldCat. It's very simple to search World Cat and then set up a variety of lists for citation lists, for subject bibliographies, for personal reading lists, etc. You can keep the list private or make it viewable by the public. You can also share your list with others, link it to your blog or webpage, or search other people's lists. Give it a spin. I think there could be useful ways to promote reading with librarian generated lists.

Judy Gressel