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[ARSCLIST] Digital "catalogry"--was: Tape baking question
----- Original Message -----
From: "Karl Miller" <lyaa071@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> On Tue, 10 Oct 2006, Tom Fine wrote:
Having read the post below (too long to send folks to the end
thereof) I am becoming more convinced I should hire one or a
few crackerjack typists (my weakness, due to physical concerns)
and found the "Acme Cataloguing Works" (or some such).
Then I'll throw my trusty desktop over my shoulder...and, trailed
by my retinue of trained typists, start walking until I see a
sign reading "LIBRARY"...knock on the imposing entrance portal...
and ask, "You folks need anything catalogued in here?"
Now, quite seriously...it seems to me possible that we (that
being a VERY general "we!") could start using a process whereby
all the necessary information needed to "catalog" (standard
format here assumed) an entity (i.e book, sound recording,
physical/digital document, photograph (still or movie) or
similar such thingies...would be placed on a microchip which
would then be attached/inserted/whatever in/to/upon the thing
My grocery store can already scan the code on a can of fried
ants...and put it on my bill for that visit...with the current
price and any applicable taxes. If I decide to pay from my bank
account, another device scans my bank card and deducts the
correct amount from my chosen account. And...if I have a card
from a "points" program of some sort, that gets scanned and
the necessary figgerin' done as well!
For new such items, the "catalog data card" could be attached
by their sources. For extant ones, we would need a device to
create the microchips...and another to put the data on them
(this latter should be a computer peripheral), which should
be a standard "data entry" process.
We could even use the chips for mundane things like keeping
track of library "borrowing" and similar processes. In fact,
the chips could also be "trackable"...so if a library item
is stolen, a GPS system could track it.
The work on extant items would be no more than any other
method of cataloguing (and could be set up to simplify
or minimize the effort involved)...while new aquisitions
(if actually new and not "used") would only take a swipe
of a scanner!
Steven C. Barr
> > Wow, Karl, you're a real ray o' sunshine!
> Well, I just try to call it the way I see it and how I read the
> > I think that archives, libraries and collections stand a better chance of
> > results out-sourcing transfer work than metadata and cataloguing. I figure,
> > organization does everything well
> I agree completely. From my perspective libraries did an excellent job in
> the past. The problem came when the information stream changed from the
> linearity of paper to the digital environment. They seem hung up on trying
> to adapt their linear methodologies to the digital information stream.
> However, I believe that libraries should outsource only the more
> problematic transfer work. Again, my perspective comes from the notion that
> reformatting process is integral to the preparation of metadata. Also, one
> needs to consider security issues and the libary's need to be able to
> monitor the quality of any work which is outsourced.
> > You talk very pessimistically about preserving what "needs" to be preserved,
> agree if one
> > casts a very wide net of "needs." I think smarter is to have a more
> to decide
> > what's "important" or "vital" -- judgement calls, all -- and make that
> > No room for endless debate and delay.
> I am not just pessimistic, I am outraged at the situation as I see it. The
> lack of concern for preservation is unforgiveable...and I don't accept the
> notion that libraries don't have the money. I believe much could be done
> to realign priorities.
> The idea of some national priorities sounds wonderful, but I would think
> that perhaps we might end up being just as well served if informed
> curators were calling the shots. Great libraries and archives have been
> built by great librarians and great archivists who bring their own
> particular bias to the building of a collection.
> If one were to attempt some prioritization on a national basis, I would
> fear that politics would become a major consideration.
> > This is all probably too much to hope for and many things that might be of
> > value to future generations will probably molder away before anyone even
> > they're gone.
> Sad to say, many treasures have already turned to mold, and much more has
> been tossed in the trash. While I am most versed in the ways of our own
> library, my experience with many others seems to indicate to me a
> dereliction of responsibility to future generations. On the other hand, I
> am familiar with libraries that seem to share my concerns, but the vast
> have encountered do not.
> For me, the simple numbers (like the ARL statistics) indicate that the
> battle was lost years ago. Of course we can't save everything, but as you
> suggest, and I try to suggest, there appears to be more intelligent ways
> to maximize the efficacy of what we do, and how we assign resources.