Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to attend the NFAIS annual meeting in Philadelphia. This year's program was particularly strong and timely. Among the speakers, one speaker of interest was MacKenzie Smith, Associate Director for Technology at the MIT Libraries, who gave an excellent presentation on the ways that she finds and uses information for her work at the MIT Libraries. For those of you who don't know MacKenzie, she is a leading force in the area of digital libraries and digital information, having played critical roles in the development of DSpace, FASCADE, SMILE, and MIT's OpenCourseWare system and other digital preservation initiatives. Among her presentation highlights was the fact that 1995 was a tipping point in the world of digital information because it was the year that the World Wide Web began to gain traction beyond technical specialists. MacKenzie also made the point that the majority of the work that she and her research specialties do today—digital preservation and the use and management of digital content—didn't even exist prior to 1995. Partly because of this and also due to the rapid changes in our community, she relies less on traditional published materials for current awareness and is more likely to use the new social media, conference proceedings, and more informal information exchange.
Another NFAIS presenter was Stephen Arnold, who spoke on the transformations to the information landscape made by the large internet corporations, Amazon (launched in 1995), Yahoo! (1995), Google (1997), and Facebook (2004). The radical impact of these organizations is still reverberating in our industry. Expect that it will continue to do so, especially when a decision is made by the judge in the Google Books settlement.
Another reason why 1995 resonates today is that fifteen years ago on March 1st a group of computer and library specialists gathered in Dublin, Ohio for an invitational OCLC/NCSA Metadata Workshop. The group "met to identify the scope of the problem, to achieve consensus on a list of metadata elements that would yield simple descriptions of data in a wide range of subject areas, and to lay the groundwork for achieving further progress in the definition of metadata elements that describe electronic information." The result of that meeting was the development of the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set (later NISO standard ANSI/NISO Z39.85) and a vibrant community of metadata specialists organized by the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative. I strongly encourage you to (re-)read Stuart Weibel's article describing the meeting that was published in July of 1995. The set of 15 elements, although relatively simple, has reverberated through the years.
Clay Shirky in the opening keynote at NFAIS made this exact point: we often don't know at a particular moment the eventual power of the ideas we share. Shirky gave as examples the simple beginnings of Wikipedia and Linux by quoting the short messages posted by Larry Sanger in 2001 (Let's make a wiki) and Linus Torvalds in 1991 (Hello everybody out there using minix) that initiated the two projects.
A new project being launched by NISO and NFAIS on supplemental materials to journal articles started similarly with an e-mail from Sasha Schwarzman at the American Geophysical Union to the CrossRef technical working group list. That message and his white paper, led to an invitational roundtable meeting in January 2010. A report of the meeting is expected to be available soon; check the event webpage for the report and related information. Also underway is the proposal for the joint NISO/NFAIS work project to follow-up on the issues raised in the meeting.
We can only hope that some of the small messages and ideas we launch through NISO will also reverberate through the forthcoming years.
New Specs & Standards
March Two-Part Webinar: Identifiers: New Problems, New Solutions
NISO will be holding a two-part webinar on the 2nd and 3rd Wednesdays in March from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. (Eastern time) on Identifiers: New Problems, New Solutions.
Topics and speakers for Part 1, What's in a Name? Latest Developments in Identifiers, on March 10 are:
Topics and speakers for Part 2, Content Identification: What's New, on March 17 are:
Each part is independent; you may register for either one or both. Registrants for both parts receive a 20% discount. NISO and NASIG members may also register at a discounted rate. Registration is per site (defined as access for one computer).Can't make it on the scheduled date or time? Registrants receive access to the recorded version for one year, which can be viewed at your convenience. For more information or to register, visit the event webpage.
This two-part webinar is sponsored by CrossRef.
NISO Forum on Discovery to Delivery: Creating a First-Class User Experience
Join NISO for a one-day forum on Discovery to Delivery: Creating a First-Class User Experience on Tuesday, March 23, 2010 at the Georgia Tech Global Learning Center, Atlanta, GA.
There is information everywhere today and access to it relies on a seamless discovery process that offers all appropriate options to the unassisted information seeker. The journey between discovery and delivery is accomplished with a variety of differing technologies and processes, many of which depend on a reliable and accurate knowledge base of coverage information. As demands on these technologies change and expand, NISO supports a variety of efforts to strengthen and improve them. This forum will explore new and innovative ways to meet user's needs and expectations for discovery and delivery of content in the networked world.
Speakers and topics for the forum are:
Early bird discounts are available through March 12, 2010. A student discount is also available. For more information and to register, visit the event webpage.
Innovative Interfaces is the forum break sponsor.
April Webinar: RFID in Libraries: Standards and Expanding Use
NISO's April webinar will focus on RFID in Libraries: Standards and Expanding Use. This webinar will look at the latest developments in standardization regarding the use of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) in libraries and share the experience of an actual implementation of RFID.
Topics to be covered in the webinar are:
Registration is per site (defined as access for one computer). NISO and NASIG members may register at a discounted rate. A student discount is also available. Can't make it on the scheduled date or time? Registrants receive access to the recorded version for one year, which can be viewed at your convenience. For more information or to register, visit the event webpage.
New Working Groups Launched on E-Journal Presentation and RFID in Libraries
The Business Information Topic Committee has approved the formation of a new working group to develop recommended practices for the Presentation and Identification of E-Journals. The project is expected to address issues in the areas of titles for different formats, access and linkage to former titles, historically accurate citations, and the use of ISSN registered metadata. The roster for the working group is currently being formed along with an interest group e-mail list. Review the project proposal here.
The Content and Collection Management Topic Committee has approved the formation of a working group to revise the NISO Recommended Practice on RFID in U.S. Libraries (NISO RP-6-2008). The related ISO standard on RFID in libraries is in the final stages of development, with final publication expected in mid-2010. A review and revision of the NISO RP will be done to ensure alignment with the ISO standard, make recommendations regarding encoding practices since two types of encoding are allowed in the ISO standard, identify which optional elements in the data model should be recommended for use in U.S. implementations, and interpret the standard where needed to make implementations easier for manufacturers and libraries. The new working group is expected to include some members who worked on the previous RP and some new members. An interest group e-mail list will also be available. Review the project proposal here.
Anyone interested in participating on either of these new projects or in being added to the interest group e-mail lists should contact Karen Wetzel.
Call For Nominations for NISO Board of Directors
Pursuant to NISO's Bylaws, the Nominating Committee of the Organization has released a call for nominations for the position of Vice-Chair of the NISO Board of Directors (succeeding to Chair) and for at least one Director position. Please submit any nominations to Todd Carpenter no later than March 15, 2010.
For more information on the duties of the Board officers, refer to the NISO By-Laws, in particular Section V.
Z39.7 Standing Committee Accepting Comments on the Data Dictionary
As part of the continuous maintenance of ANSI/NISO Z39.7, Information Services and Use: Metrics & statistics for libraries and information providers – Data Dictionary, comments are being accepted by the Z39.7 Standing Committee for consideration at its June 29, 2010 meeting, to be convened at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC.
The Data Dictionary is available online and in-context comments can be made by using the "Post a Comment" box that appears on each page when navigating the standard. To submit more general comments, use the NISO web contact form.
New Specs & Standards
The DAISY Online Delivery protocol is a web service API that facilitates the delivery of digital resources from service providers to end users. The protocol features a core set of operations that can be configured to enable a variety of different download models, making it a flexible and lightweight solution to the growing need for online delivery of published content. A final draft is available for public review and comment until March 20, 2010.
Library of Congress, Extended Date/Time Format In Development
There is no standard date/time format that meets the needs of various well-known XML metadata schemas, for example MODS, METS, PREMIS, etc. For several years there have been various discussions about developing a reasonably comprehensive date/time definition for the bibliographic community, and submitting it either for standardization or some other mode of formalization. Interested parties are encouraged to join the discussion of this developing specification. Subscribe to the Datetime Listserv.
NISO, Seven Reaffirmed Standards
ANSI has confirmed the reaffirmation of seven NISO standards that were approved for reaffirmation by the respective NISO voting member ballot pools in 2009. The standards are:
E-Books and ISBNs
About NISO Newsline
NISO's free monthly e-newsletter reports on the latest NISO news, highlights new specifications and standards of interest including calls for public review and comment, abstracts selected media stories on topics of interest to the NISO community, and links to news releases of NISO member organizations
Newsline is distributed via e-mail to subscribers on the first Wednesday of the month and is posted to the NISO website.
March Two-Part Webinar: Identifiers: New Problems, New Solutions
1:00 - 2:30 p.m. (Eastern)
1:00 - 2:30 p.m. (Eastern)
NISO/BISG 4th Annual Forum
Other Events of Interest
News from NISO Members:
Leading the Library Renaissance: Mr. Makoto Nakamoto, Tokyo, Japan
Hamilton East Public Library (IN) Selects Encore Discovery
Gazi University in Ankara, Turkey Selects Millennium
What Do People Ask Their Social Networks?
The Higher Colleges of Technology Go Live with AirPAC
Leslie Johnston Joins NDIIPP Staff
New, Natural User Interfaces
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