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High-level Subject Access Tools and Techniques in Internet Cataloging
Edited by Judith R. Ahronheim
When the World Wide Web was developed in the 90s, libraries began making up lists of online resources for their patrons. These lists were compiled manually, took much time to create and went out of date rapidly. Next, librarians cataloged Websites and put them into their online catalogs, but this also took a great deal of time. Now libraries are trying to make automated interfaces to these resources that can be customized by the user. Libraries are trying some traditional cataloging techniques in organizing these interfaces. This book is a series of articles on different methods libraries are using to try to do this.
In the first article, "Classification Schemes for Internet Resources Revisited", Diane Vizine-Goetz (Consulting Research Scientist in OCLC’s Office of Research) compares the Dewey Decimal Classification system to the subject trees of Internet directory services. She found that prospects are good for applying browsing structures based on the Dewey Decimal system to large collections. In the next article, "HILCC: a Hierarchical Interface to Library of Congress Classification", Stephen Paul Davis (coordinator of Columbia University Libraries’ Digital Initiative) describes a project at Columbia University Libraries to use Library of Congress classification numbers to generate a structured, hierarchical menu system for subject access to the libraries’ electronic resources. The libraries’ systems, cataloging, and reference staff worked together to create the classification mapping table. Classification numbers and other metadata were taken from the libraries’ OPAC every week and were matched against the mapping table and used to create browsable subject category menus for subject content of electronic resources.
Next, Kathleen Forsythe (Electronic Resources Cataloging Librarian in the Monographic Services Division of the University of Washington Libraries) and Steve Shadle (Serials Cataloger in the Serials Services Division of the University of Washington Libraries), in their article, “University of Washington Libraries Digital Registry”, discuss the transfer of online services in their libraries to the Web. A database called the Digital Registry of electronic resources was created. Web resources were cataloged using existing workflows and data elements were transferred from the OPAC to an SQL database. In this database, records were mapped to subject categories by Library of Congress classification numbers and organized within the categories by resource type. Their article discusses design, workflows, maintenance, and use of the registry.
Jonathan Rothman (Senior Systems Librarian/Analyst at the University of Michigan University Library), wrote the next article, "Bridging the Gap Between Materials-Focus and Audience-Focus: Providing Subject Categorization for Users of Electronic Resources". Rothman talks about mapping local subject terms from Library of Congress classification numbers in catalog records in order to produce hierarchical, browsable Web-based lists. These local subject terms were based on the departmental structure of the University of Michigan initially. Later they used mapping from Library of Congress call numbers to broad topics.
Keith A. Morgan (Client Services Librarian in the Digital Library Initiatives Department at North Carolina State University) and Tripp Reade (Media Resources Librarian at North Carolina State University) wrote the next article, "Competing Vocabularies and ‘Research Stuff’". The authors discuss the framework of their libraries’ portal, which allows students customization and personalization options. They also discuss procedural and political problems that designers of library portals should take into account.
The last article is "HILT: Moving Towards Interoperability in Subject Terminologies", by Dennis Nicholson (Director of Research, Information Resources Directorate, Strathclyde University and Director of the Centre for Digital Library Research), Gordon Dunsire, (Research and Projects Manager, Napier University Learning Information Resources and chair of the Cataloguing and Indexing Group in Scotland), and Susannah Neill, (New Technologies Development Officer, Department for Life-long Learning, University of Wales, Bangor). HILT stands for High-Level Thesaurus and was a United Kingdom study of the problems associated with searching by subject and cross searching in a cross-sectional and cross-domain environment in libraries, museums, archives, and electronic resource collections. It tried to solve problems caused by the use of different subject terminologies.
Each article includes footnotes and all but one of the articles include charts, tables, and other illustrations. The book has an index. All the articles are well written, and the authors present thought-provoking ideas for using traditional classification schemes in non-traditional ways to provide more access to electronic resources with less time spent by library staff members.
Published in 2002 by: The Haworth Information Press, Binghamton, New York. (115 p.) ISBN: 0-7890-2024-6 ($39.95); 0-7890-2025-4 (pbk-$24.95). Co-published simultaneously as
Journal of Internet Cataloging
, vol. 5, no. 4, 2002.
Katherine L. Rankin
Special Formats Catalog Librarian
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Las Vegas, Nevada