OCLC Buys EZProxy

In case you hadn’t heard, OCLC has bought EZProxy: http://liblogs.albany.edu/library20/2008/01/oclc_the_google_of_the_library.html . I’m probably the last one in the world to find out. Read more about it at the Library 2.0 blog which, incidentally, is going away. I’m so sad. This was one of my favorite blogs.


Wiki as Catalog

Here’s a university library that is using a Wiki as a major part of its library website:


They are also using Koha open source library catalog.  The site could use a little polishing, but I highly applaud the ingenuity and resourcefulness in creating this site!


WorldCat Beta versus WorldCat Identities

On closer inspection, it seems that WorldCat identities is a more Web 2.0 gateway into the WorldCat Beta site. It arranges materials by “identities” which include authors, named subjects, and more. But once you whittle down to a “work”, you are linked into WorldCat.org Beta.

WorldCat Beta

In an earlier post I mentioned the OCLC test site called WorldCat Identities. Today while searching Google Scholar, I found myself in the free worldcat.org beta site. If you haven’t searched this free site lately, you should take a look. To compare it with my earlier post, here’s a link to the page for Tolkien’s The Hobbit. http://www.worldcat.org/oclc/50894.
The beta search seems to incorporate many of the features I liked in WorldCat Identities.

Nice features include the link to all the different editions of this book, the ability to search my library’s embedded search tools, the ability to create or add to a personal list of topics, the ability to export the citation in a particular bibliographic format, and the ability to add content. Here’s a screenshot.

Screenshot of Worldcat.org Beta

What does worldcat.org say about local libraries? Here’s an excerpt from their What is Worldcat? page:

“Your library may let you search WorldCat from the online catalog on its Web site. (Again, you may have to log in with a valid library membership.) When you are physically at the library, you can search WorldCat using the FirstSearch reference service. Although the basic identifying information you’ll find on this Web site can fulfill most needs, WorldCat at your library includes extra features such as advanced search,”find similar items”, and links to published reviews and excerpts. ”

In addition to features listd above, it seems to me that some of the entries I looked at were lacking some MARC fields. I don’t know if the project is complete or still under test, but I would like to see the subject and author links more extensive. Still, this project is definitely of setting the standard for the future.

More About Scriblio and Casey Bisson

Ok, so everyone else already knows about WPopac (now called Scriblio) but me. Nevertheless, I am excited to have discovered it today. Here is what ALA Techsource says by way of explanation. Casey, you the man!

ALA TechSource | Unsucking the OPAC: One Man’s Noble Efforts
“WPOPAC doesn’t attempt to replace the integrated library system (ILS)—just complement and extend it. The WPOPAC goes over the ILS the way a tea cozy might slide over an ugly teapot. I’ve said for some time that a good interface to our richly structured bibliographic data is the “missing module” of the ILS; the front-end user interface ILS vendors provide—what we think of as the OPAC—doesn’t feel or function like a positive user experience. WPOPAC provides that missing module so that a search in WPOPAC feels, and is, satisfying.

Some of the satisfaction from using WPOPAC comes from the capabilities of WordPress, such as comments, feeds, and trackbacks. But the real significance of WPOPAC isn’t the functionality it displays. It’s that WPOPAC leverages “access to a [huge] community of knowledge, programmers, and designers outside libraries.” As Casey puts it, “it already has more users, designers, developers, and administrators than all the ILS vendors combined.”

Scrapping Dewey

In his blog, The Travelin’ Librarian, today Michael Sauers wrote about a library in Arizona that is doing away with classification numbers altogether, opting instead to shelves books by topic. I think I got that right! As one person commented, don’t they know the Dewey Decimal System arranges books by topic? Hellooooo? Sorry for lapsing into sarcasm. I agree with Michael and those who commented on his post that this is a classic case of throwing the baby out with the bath water. I’ll be really interested to find out how this works out.

The Travelin’ Librarian: A new twist in the “bookstore model”

More on WorldCat Identities

I have played with the site some more. One bug they need to fix involves the searching of my local library. Although my library has the title listed and my library is the top location on the list, when I click on my library’s name, the search of our catalog does not produce a result. However, if I search our catalog manually I find the title. Something about the ISBN search in our catalog is not working correctly. But, still, the promise is great!