Monday, November 24, 2008

RDA Constituency Review

RDA is up for review again. People who are interested in RDA could submit your comments by February 2, 2009. RDA (Resource Description and Access) will be the general guideline for information professionals to describe electronic resources and provide access to online informaton for users; it also facilitates the metadata quality control and sharing metadata between different communities and metadata schemes.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Generating MARC with MarcEdit

It has been a trend to harvest metadata from available online resources. Since OAI was adopted by most of data providers, it has facilitated libraries to share metadata . However, sometimes you probably want to integrate a few websites into the library cataloging database, you could do this easily with MarcEdit.

MarcEdit could process the conversion between MARC and XML metadata, it could do the following transformation:
  • MARC→ Dublin Core XML
Other conversions could be possible, but the above transformations are commonly used by librarians. Users can also edit those marc records with MarcEdit, and batch load them into your intergrating library system. If users could make use of some macros, the bacth editing will be much easier. People who are intertested in this could look at the sample at Miller Library.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Item Mapper in DSpace

Recently, I got several calls to ask how to use the item mapper in DSpace. The item mapper is used to reduce duplicates of the same record, and create an easy way to link the item record across multiple collections in DSpace. For instance, if a photograph by John Lee is collected in the photograph collection, but it also appears in the collection of Arts Department. Then we can use the item mapper to match the same photograph record in the second collection to avoid reproduce an item record in the second collection.

An item mapper is a convenient tool for users to manage records at the item level. However, when a same creator has multiple work in DSpace, and some of work might appear in various collections, then the item mapper becomes problematic. Currently, users can only use the item mapper by searching author name. As I mentioned, if the author has multiple publications in DSapce, how do users recognize the right publication to map the item record without title information?

This extreme situtation has been less considered by DSpace developers. At this point, if such case happhens, users need to label the item record which needs to be mappred in more than one collections. For example, users can create second co-author to tag the publication, then search the collections by the co-author name to identify the record and map it in the according collection. After your mapping is done, users need to go back the record and delete the co-author from the item record. That is how we can temporarily solve the problem. Nevertheless, We still hope that DSpace developers could improve the item mapper with more combined search features.