Re: [RDA-L] The purpose of standards

2012-12-27 Thread Kevin M Randall
James Weinheimer wrote:

 With online resources, everyone is looking at *exactly the same files* so
 the utility of even considering an online resource in terms of a
 manifestation may be far less useful.

It seems to me that the concept of manifestation is no less important when 
considering online resources.  And they are certainly not always exactly the 
same files.  For things such as electronic journals, there can be very 
significant differences between manifestations (the one found on the 
publisher's web site vs. Ebsco vs. Gale, etc.).

And then there are also ebooks, where you have versions for Kindle, for Nook, 
etc.  Sound files can be in various formats and at different bit rates.  
Graphic files can be in different formats and resolutions.

Many books, films, sound recordings, etc. have been digitally converted and 
remastered multiple times, and there are very real differences between the 
versions--differences which can be significant, perhaps even critical, to the 
user.

Compared to the print world, one could argue that we are dealing with a greater 
number of manifestations, and there will always be a need to distinguish 
between them, on both the managerial side (e.g. selection and acquisition) and 
the user side (obtaining files whose formats and features meet the user's 
needs).

Kevin M. Randall
Principal Serials Cataloger
Northwestern University Library
k...@northwestern.edu
(847) 491-2939

Proudly wearing the sensible shoes since 1978! 


Re: [RDA-L] Multiple electronic manifestations (was RE: [RDA-L] The purpose of standards)

2012-12-27 Thread Jonathan Rochkind
Yes, that doesn't surprise me. But they're going to care if one 
manifestation is PDF, and another is Kindle, and another is mobi, and 
another is ePub. (They might even know what those words mean, but 
they're going to care that if they have an e-reader, some of those 
formats will work on their particular e-reader and some won't).


If different electronic manifestations end up with slightly differnet 
textual content (different pagination if they have pagination at all, or 
slightly different actual text) -- then it's also going to matter for 
scholarly citations to know which text was cited (or which version's 
page 12), and be able to retrieve the appropriate cited version.


And it of course matters for own internal control,  which vendor 
platform hosts a given copy, so we can remove the advertisement of 
access temporarily (if vendor platform is down) or permanently (if 
vendor goes away or we stop licensing from them).


On 12/27/2012 3:39 PM, Benjamin A Abrahamse wrote:

It is definitely true that, from the point of view of resource management, each 
manifestation has its own particular information that needs to be looked at 
separately.

But its also true--or at least so it seems to me from the feedback our users 
give us--that very few users care what provider they get their e-book or 
articles from.  For example, we often get complaints from users about the 
intermediary menu our link-resolver shows when we have the same content from 
multiple providers, as it creates an extra step and occassionally some 
confusion about exactly what is going on.

The users that have preferred provider, I would guess, get to their resources via the provider (or 
by other means, Google Scholar, etc.) and not through our catalog.  (Then again, here at MIT we 
follow, whenever possible, a single record approach which might be understood in 
FRBR-terms as expression-level cataloging. So maybe our users are already particularly 
finnicky about what they see in the catalog?)

So while I think the concept of different electronic manifestations is 
important for catalogers, but I'm not sure the practice of generating records 
for each specific electronic manifestation is going to make our catalogs more 
appealing to end-users.

My .02,
b


Benjamin Abrahamse
Cataloging Coordinator
Acquisitions, Metadata and Enterprise Systems
MIT Libraries
617-253-7137


-Original Message-
From: Resource Description and Access / Resource Description and Access 
[mailto:RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca] On Behalf Of Kevin M Randall
Sent: Thursday, December 27, 2012 12:52 PM
To: RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca
Subject: Re: [RDA-L] The purpose of standards

James Weinheimer wrote:


With online resources, everyone is looking at *exactly the same files*
so the utility of even considering an online resource in terms of a
manifestation may be far less useful.


It seems to me that the concept of manifestation is no less important when considering 
online resources.  And they are certainly not always exactly the same files.  
For things such as electronic journals, there can be very significant differences between 
manifestations (the one found on the publisher's web site vs. Ebsco vs. Gale, etc.).

And then there are also ebooks, where you have versions for Kindle, for Nook, 
etc.  Sound files can be in various formats and at different bit rates.  
Graphic files can be in different formats and resolutions.

Many books, films, sound recordings, etc. have been digitally converted and 
remastered multiple times, and there are very real differences between the 
versions--differences which can be significant, perhaps even critical, to the 
user.

Compared to the print world, one could argue that we are dealing with a greater 
number of manifestations, and there will always be a need to distinguish 
between them, on both the managerial side (e.g. selection and acquisition) and 
the user side (obtaining files whose formats and features meet the user's 
needs).

Kevin M. Randall
Principal Serials Cataloger
Northwestern University Library
k...@northwestern.edu
(847) 491-2939

Proudly wearing the sensible shoes since 1978!



Re: [RDA-L] Multiple electronic manifestations (was RE: [RDA-L] The purpose of standards)

2012-12-27 Thread Benjamin A Abrahamse
I agree that those differences matter; it's one of the reasons those 
much-maligned intermediary menus stay up.

But in the current, record-based environment, I'm not sure if it's such a great 
idea to have each separate manifestation on its own record.  A lot of the data 
will be redundant; and in any case most of the data we store to manage these 
resources live outside of the catalog, in an ERM and/or link-resolver.

In some future system--either an E/R system like the ones the original drafters 
of the FRBR report envisioned, or more likely something based on linked data--I 
can see how each manifestation having its own record (or identifier) will be 
useful both to staff and users.  But we're not there yet.

--Ben

p.s. Let me hasten to add: I doubt Kevin was suggesting that each electronic 
manifestation requires a separate bib; I think he was just talking about the 
utility of the concept of related manifestations with respect to e-resources.  

Benjamin Abrahamse
Cataloging Coordinator
Acquisitions, Metadata and Enterprise Systems
MIT Libraries
617-253-7137


-Original Message-
From: Resource Description and Access / Resource Description and Access 
[mailto:RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca] On Behalf Of Jonathan Rochkind
Sent: Thursday, December 27, 2012 3:44 PM
To: RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca
Subject: Re: [RDA-L] Multiple electronic manifestations (was RE: [RDA-L] The 
purpose of standards)

Yes, that doesn't surprise me. But they're going to care if one manifestation 
is PDF, and another is Kindle, and another is mobi, and another is ePub. (They 
might even know what those words mean, but they're going to care that if they 
have an e-reader, some of those formats will work on their particular e-reader 
and some won't).

If different electronic manifestations end up with slightly differnet textual 
content (different pagination if they have pagination at all, or slightly 
different actual text) -- then it's also going to matter for scholarly 
citations to know which text was cited (or which version's page 12), and be 
able to retrieve the appropriate cited version.

And it of course matters for own internal control,  which vendor platform hosts 
a given copy, so we can remove the advertisement of access temporarily (if 
vendor platform is down) or permanently (if vendor goes away or we stop 
licensing from them).

On 12/27/2012 3:39 PM, Benjamin A Abrahamse wrote:
 It is definitely true that, from the point of view of resource management, 
 each manifestation has its own particular information that needs to be looked 
 at separately.

 But its also true--or at least so it seems to me from the feedback our users 
 give us--that very few users care what provider they get their e-book or 
 articles from.  For example, we often get complaints from users about the 
 intermediary menu our link-resolver shows when we have the same content from 
 multiple providers, as it creates an extra step and occassionally some 
 confusion about exactly what is going on.

 The users that have preferred provider, I would guess, get to their 
 resources via the provider (or by other means, Google Scholar, etc.) 
 and not through our catalog.  (Then again, here at MIT we follow, 
 whenever possible, a single record approach which might be 
 understood in FRBR-terms as expression-level cataloging. So maybe 
 our users are already particularly finnicky about what they see in the 
 catalog?)

 So while I think the concept of different electronic manifestations is 
 important for catalogers, but I'm not sure the practice of generating records 
 for each specific electronic manifestation is going to make our catalogs more 
 appealing to end-users.

 My .02,
 b


 Benjamin Abrahamse
 Cataloging Coordinator
 Acquisitions, Metadata and Enterprise Systems MIT Libraries
 617-253-7137


 -Original Message-
 From: Resource Description and Access / Resource Description and Access 
 [mailto:RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca] On Behalf Of Kevin M Randall
 Sent: Thursday, December 27, 2012 12:52 PM
 To: RDA-L@listserv.lac-bac.gc.ca
 Subject: Re: [RDA-L] The purpose of standards

 James Weinheimer wrote:

 With online resources, everyone is looking at *exactly the same files*
 so the utility of even considering an online resource in terms of a
 manifestation may be far less useful.

 It seems to me that the concept of manifestation is no less important when 
 considering online resources.  And they are certainly not always exactly the 
 same files.  For things such as electronic journals, there can be very 
 significant differences between manifestations (the one found on the 
 publisher's web site vs. Ebsco vs. Gale, etc.).

 And then there are also ebooks, where you have versions for Kindle, for Nook, 
 etc.  Sound files can be in various formats and at different bit rates.  
 Graphic files can be in different formats and resolutions.

 Many books, films, sound recordings, etc. have been digitally converted and 
 remastered

[RDA-L] The purpose of standards

2012-12-22 Thread James Weinheimer

On 12/21/2012 09:52 PM, Deborah Fritz wrote:
snip
At the risk of sounding even more obsessive-compulsive than Bob, I 
offer you this.

/snip

and

On 12/21/2012 05:29 PM, Heidrun Wiesenm├╝ller wrote:Here's a postscript 
to the discussion (for those of you who still care):

snip
Here's a postscript to the discussion (for those of you who still care): 

/snip

I want to make clear that I believe that all of these concerns are 
indeed very important if we want to create and maintain high-quality 
standards. The people who create the records (i.e. standardized products 
of any type) *must* care because if even they don't care, why should we 
expect anybody else to care? And why should the public provide money to 
create products that nobody cares about?


Bibliographic records that conform to high-quality standards are the 
only products we have. Anyone off of the street, or any computer can 
easily make garbage records, and make them easier, cheaper, faster, and 
if garbage records are considered to be the same as anything else, they 
will be better as well.


Specific matters of quality aside, what I challenge is the re-opening of 
questions that were solved long ago. If someone can demonstrate that the 
former methods don't work any longer or if they can demonstrate that 
there are better and more efficient ways to do the same job, then those 
would be good reasons to re-open such questions.


For instance, long experience has proven that transcribing the title of 
an item exactly is extremely important to the running of a library. 
Therefore, accuracy and even extended rules for titles became necessary. 
And yet transcribing the same rules for titles may have little purpose 
*in an internet world* where the title of a resource can change in an 
instant and the earlier title no longer even exists. This is a 
fundamentally different situation from title changes for e.g. printed 
serials and series because the earlier issues held in the library will 
forever bear the former titles. So in this regard, re-opening the 
question of transcribing titles may make sense.


Another example of a fundamental difference from printed copies versus 
materials on the internet is that everyone is looking at *the same 
file*. In the physical world, each library that adds an item is 
examining an individual copy that might, or might not, differ in certain 
specific ways from other similar items. In the printed world, for the 
sake of coherence and efficiency, all of these individual items have 
been lumped together into what is called a manifestation in FRBR 
terms, or an edition in earlier terminology, based on certain 
definitions. The definitions for manifestation can and have changed, 
leading to the situation where something that on one day had been 
considered a different manifestation/edition, on another day becomes a 
new manifestation because of changes to the definition.


With online resources, everyone is looking at *exactly the same files* 
so the utility of even considering an online resource in terms of a 
manifestation may be far less useful. In terms of 
work/expression/manifestation/item, I ask what could constitute an 
item when considering webpages and websites?


With manifestations, it seems that the only way to consider the 
different manifestation aspects of a webpage would be to relate it to 
the Wayback Machine in the Internet Archive somehow. But I certainly 
wouldn't want to catalog each one of those manifestations. The website 
of Microsoft.com currently has 3226 earlier versions (or 
manifestations/editions) in the Internet Archive! 
http://wayback.archive.org/web/*/http://www.microsoft.com


Yet for physical materials, the idea of the manifestation/edition still 
makes as much sense as it ever did.


So, I am not against the need to re-open old questions, but I maintain 
that there need to be good reasons for re-opening those questions. In 
the current cases, I cannot find any reasons at all--in fact, I have 
tried to point out in some of my podcasts how there will be serious 
negative consequences for the public. These consequences should not be 
ignored. It seems to me that the motivation is some need to shoehorn 
everything into a highly dubious and unproven metaphysical construct 
such as FRBR. A construct that is unproven especially in relationship to 
online materials.


So, I applaud those who take these matters seriously. They are doing a 
very important task. What I question is the need to re-open questions if 
there is no practical utility in it.


--
James weinheimerweinheimer.ji...@gmail.com
First Thushttp://catalogingmatters.blogspot.com/
Cooperative Cataloging Ruleshttp://sites.google.com/site/opencatalogingrules/
Cataloging Matters 
Podcastshttp://blog.jweinheimer.net/p/cataloging-matters-podcasts.html