January 2011

Working Group Connection is a quarterly supplement to the monthly NISO Newsline e-newsletter, published in January, April, July, and October. Working Group Connection provides the latest news from NISO's working groups and committees. Working Group Connection will keep you up-to-date on the progress of all of the standards and recommended practices in development and maintenance, letting you know both what is new and what is forthcoming.

Architecture Committee

Chair: Bruce Heterick, Vice President, Outreach & Participation Services, JSTOR and Portico (parts of Ithaka), & Vice-Chair, NISO Board of Directors

The Architecture Committee is chaired by the Vice-Chair of NISO's Board of Directors and consists of the co-chairs of NISO's three Topic Committees: Business Information, Content & Collection Management, and Discovery to Delivery. During the January 2011 ALA Midwinter Conference, the Architecture Committee met following Topic Committee meetings to discuss strategic planning for the organization and topics of particular interest to pursue in 2011. By coordinating together at this level, the Topic Committees will be better situated to identify horizon issues and areas where topics cross over committee boundaries so that efforts can be more productive.

Business Information Topic Committee

CORE (Cost of Resource Exchange) Standing Committee

Chair: Ted Koppel (Auto-Graphics, Inc.)
Vice-Chair: Kathy Klemperer (Harrassowitz)

The NISO Recommended Practice, CORE: Cost of Resource Exchange Protocol (NISO RP-10-2010), identifies a compact yet useful structure for query and delivery of relevant acquisitions data. The CORE recommended practice defines an XML schema to facilitate the exchange of financial information related to the acquisition of library resources between systems, such as an ILS and an ERMS. The CORE Standing Committee provides maintenance support for the recommended practice as well as is tasked with conducting an annual review of its uptake in the first three years.

Updates on CORE were provided at ALA Midwinter (see www.niso.org/news/events/2011/alamid2011), and the group is currently developing a logo to help with outreach efforts, developing FAQs on CORE and how to implement it for the NISO website, and creating diagrams and flow charts to help provide visual explanations of how CORE works.

ERM Data Standards & Best Practices Review Working Group

Co-Chairs: Ivy Anderson (California Digital Library), Tim Jewell (University of Washington)

This ERM Data Review Working Group is charged to undertake a gap analysis regarding electronic resource management (ERM) related data, standards and best practices. The group has finished with its work of mapping extant standards and best practices to ERMI terms, and has begun drafting their report, a discussion paper that will:

  • Make recommendations regarding the future of ERMI Data Dictionary.
  • Describe typical challenges libraries face in using currently available ERM systems and services.
  • Identify gaps in interoperability and best practices.

Updates from this group were provided at ALA Midwinter (see www.niso.org/news/events/2011/alamid2011). The discussion paper is expected to be available June 2011.

I2 (Institutional Identifiers) Working Group

Co-Chairs: Grace Agnew (Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Oliver Pesch (EBSCO Information Services)

Following the midterm report release from summer 2010 (available at www.niso.org/workrooms/i2/midtermreport), the NISO I2 Working Group has been adjusting the metadata and has been creating additional use cases based on feedback on that report. In addition, the group is currently reaching out to the ISNI IA, the International Standard Name Identifier International Agency for the ISO standard. The NISO I2 initiative and the ISO ISNI standard share many common goals and therefore the I2 Working Group is initiating discussions with ISNI to explore how ISNI can be extended to support the mission and scenarios of use for the I2.

IOTA Working Group

IOTA: Small changes, Big Improvements

Chair: Adam Chandler (Cornell University)

The IOTA (Improving OpenURLs Through Analytics) Working Group is a two-year project to investigate the feasibility of creating industry-wide, transparent and scalable metrics for evaluating and comparing the quality of OpenURL implementations across content providers. At the end of two years an evaluation process will be conducted and decision made on whether or not to continue the initiative, to be provided in a published NISO Technical Report. This qualitative report is intended to help OpenURL providers compare their OpenURL quality to that of their peers, include recommendations for source vendors and possibly link resolver vendors, and ultimately improve OpenURLs across the industry, equaling more success for users.

At this time, over 9.6 million OpenURLs have been analyzed from log files supplied by various sources -- visit openurlquality.niso.org to view the data and metrics. If you are willing to share your data to help with this project, please contact Adam Chandler, chair, at alc28@cornell.edu. All personal information is scrubbed from the data, and you will be able to use the IOTA site to analyze and compare your own results against the others' data. Reports available show elements that are showing up in OpenURLs, patterns of elements that are showing up in OpenURLs, and frequency with which OpenURL elements show up in OpenURLs from source databases and source vendors. The working group is also developing a "Vendor Completeness Index" that tests the assumption that more information makes for a better OpenURL, and on element weighting (e.g., if a particular element is considered "more important" than others). Other work underway includes establishing support for data loading, updating the IOTA website for better readability and access, new and updated documentation, new support examples, and general bug fixes and outreach support (e.g., through the blog, presentations, and more).

In addition, IOTA is currently in discussions with the NISO/UKSG KBART Phase II Working Group about potential collaboration on linkto syntax and behavior standardization.

IOTA will be at the following upcoming conferences:

PIE-J (Presentation and Identification of E-Journals) Working Group PIE-J: Presentation and Identification of E-Journals

Co-chairs: Cindy Hepfer (University of Buffalo, SUNY), Bob Boissy (Springer)

Unless journal websites accurately and uniformly list all the titles under which content was published, user access to desired content is considerably diminished. No one wins: not the library, the publishers, the vendor, or the researcher.

The goal of the PIE-J Working Group is to review the problem and develop a Recommended Practice that will provide much-needed guidance on the presentation of e-journals -- particularly in the areas of title presentation, accurate use of the ISSN, and citation practices -- to publishers and platform providers as well as to solve some long-standing concerns of serials librarians. The working group is currently working on developing a list of essential terminology for their report, is refining a list of areas where best practices are needed, and has an outline of contents for their final publication drafted. In addition, the group is looking at extant best practices available in this area; if you are aware of similar efforts or best practices, please contact the group co-chairs to let them know.

The group hopes to have a draft for comment available late spring 2011, with a final publication late summer/early autumn 2011.

Co-chair Bob Boissy will be presenting on PIE-J at the NASIG 26th Annual Conference in early June 2011. For more information, visit: www.nasig.org/conference_registration.cfm

SERU (Shared E-Resource Understanding) Standing Committee

Shared E-Resource Understanding

Co-chairs: Judy Luther (Informed Strategies), Selden Lamoureux (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill)

This standing committee provides maintenance and support for NISO RP-7-2008, SERU: A Shared Electronic Resource Understanding. The group was reactivated in fall 2010, and has been working to update the SERU FAQs and website, develop a SERU logo (and is now working on guidelines for use), address questions about use of SERU internationally, and is reviewing an ONIX-PL mapping of SERU. In addition, the committee has given to the Business Information Topic Committee a proposal to minimally revise the SERU document in order to allow for easier use with e-books. This primarily entails adjusting current language that specifically references subscriptions to allow for broader application of SERU, and includes a new paragraph around ILL. If approved, the standing committee will be reaching out to stakeholders for early vetting in the next month, followed by a draft release for public comment expected in late spring/early summer.

Finally, a brief survey on the use of SERU is being distributed. Consisting of only four questions, feedback is requested by February 4, 2011. The survey is available at www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q67PJ3T.

SUSHI (Standardized Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative) Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Hana Levay (University of Washington), Oliver Pesch (EBSCO Information Services)

This standing committee provides maintenance and support for ANSI/NISO Z39.93-2007, The Standardized Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative (SUSHI) Protocol. It further acts as maintenance group for COUNTER schema by providing recommendations to COUNTER and making changes to the COUNTER schemas (as approved by COUNTER).

The SUSHI Standing Committee regularly updates the resources available to help support those who are interested in implementing and using SUSHI. New sample COUNTER reports have been added to the SUSHI Reports Registry, and the group is looking at proposing security recommendations based on the committee's errata to Appendix G: Security Considerations. In addition, the SUSHI Standing Committee is working with COUNTER to develop and include in the COUNTER Code of Practice best practices for SUSHI implementation -- particularly for areas like authentication. The expectation is that adherence to these best practices will be part of the COUNTER audit.

Finally, the SUSHI Standing Committee has proposed to the Business Information Topic Committee the development of a new working group to focus on improving SUSHI servers through enhanced reporting. This initiative aims to focus on two areas of improvements in SUSHI servers: first, to simplify the testing of SUSHI clients by recommending SUSHI servers adopt a standardized approach for offering test access to their service; and second, is to introduce a simple report that allows the SUSHI Server to report its status to the client.

Z39.7 Data Dictionary Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Denise Davis (Sacramento Public Library), Elizabeth Aversa (University of Alabama, School of Library & Information Studies)

The Z39.7 Data Dictionary Standing Committee provides maintenance support for the continuously maintained ANSI/NISO Z39.7-2004: Information Services and Use: Metrics & statistics for libraries and information providers – Data Dictionary.

The committee has reviewed the standard and finished work to integrate the content from the original appendices, "Methods of Measurement" and "Measuring the Use of Electronic Library Services," into the main body of the standard. The NISO office is currently working to put those changes in place in the online standard.

Content & Collection Management Topic Committee

DAISY Standard Revision Working Group

Co-chairs: George Kerscher (DAISY), Markus Gylling (DAISY)

The DAISY Standard, officially ANSI/NISO Z39.86-2005, Specifications for the Digital Talking Book, is undergoing revision. The third internal working draft of Part A, Authoring and Interchange (the ZedAI Framework), was released this month. Currently it is expected that a draft standard for trial use will be available in early April. For Part B, Distribution, the working group is looking to the IDPF's publication of EPUB 3 as a draft standard for trial use on February 14. It appears that the features and functions needed in the DAISY community will be met by this specification. Assuming the requirements we need remain in this specification, the working group may recommend dropping Part B of Z39.86.

Journal Article Versions Recommended Practice Survey

Survey Lead: Lettie Conrad (SAGE Publications, Inc.)

Online publishing allows for the release of multiple versions of journal articles—and these growing practices are redefining our concept of "publishing" and the "version of record." A survey released in July 2010 aimed to find out if metadata identifying journal article versions is needed, how such metadata—including the recommended metadata terms in the NISO Recommended Practice, NISO RP-8-2008, Journal Article Versions (JAV): Recommendations of the NISO/ALPSP JAV Technical Working Group—is currently being used, and what the future might look like.

A report of the survey results is expected in February 2011.

For more information, please listen to the December 13th NISO Open Teleconference call to hear from Lettie Conrad about this survey, its results, and what next steps should be taken.

RFID in Libraries Revision Working Group

Co-chairs: Vinod Chachra (VTLS, Inc.), Paul Sevcik (3M Library Systems)

In order to ensure that the NISO Recommended Practice on RFID in U.S. Libraries is up to date and provides United States implementers of RFID tags in libraries with sufficient guidance to conform with the ISO standard on RFID in libraries the NISO Recommended Practice is being revised.

The draft revision is essentially complete, with minor edits being made to complete the document before it is released for comment in early spring. For more information, please join us in April for the two-part NISO webinar focusing on RFID. Part 1 will provide a broad overview of RFID use in libraries, with perspectives from a library user, a technology supplier, and a service provider to explain what to expect from RFID and what services a supplier might provide. Part 2 will focus on the revised recommended practice, looking primarily at the data model, security issues, and issues of privacy and vandalism. Visit www.niso.org/news/events/2011/nisowebinars/ to register now.

Standardized Markup for Journal Articles Working Group (JATS: Journal Article Tag Suite)

Co-chairs: Jeff Beck (National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine), B. Tommie Usdin (Mulberry Technologies, Inc.

This working group has revised the currently existing National Library of Medicine (NLM) Journal Archiving and Interchange Tag Suite, version 3.0, in order to handle outstanding requests, and decisions have been made as to how the standard will be formatted and made available, as well as how to make supporting documentation available. The draft standard is currently in its final draft stage in the working group and is expected to be made available for trial use in February-March 2011. Once complete, the standard will be continuously maintained, which allows for regularly updating by a standing maintenance committee in order to quickly address changes and requirements in this environment.

NISO/NFAIS Supplemental Journal Article Materials Project

Business Working Group
Co-chairs: Linda Beebe (American Psychological Association), Marie McVeigh (Thomson Reuters)
Technical Working Group
Co-chairs: Dave Martinsen (American Chemical Society), Sasha Schwarzman (American Geophysical Union)
http://www.niso.org/topics/tl/ supplementary/

This goal of this joint project with NFAIS is to create a Recommended Practice for publisher inclusion, handling, display, and preservation of supplemental journal article materials. The Business Working Group is addressing the semantic and policy issues related to delivering materials that are supplemental to scholarly journal articles, and the Technical Working Group is focusing on the technical issues. In

In fall 2010, both groups created draft charges to help to define their duties and scope. The Business Working Group additionally has identified three categories to help publishers, editors, and authors classify supplemental materials and to help refine their recommendations. In addition, they have begun drafting recommendations, categorized into sections that deal with selecting, editing, presenting, and preserving supplemental material. The Technical Working Group has created a hierarchy of suggested metadata, and has been reviewing the metadata terms to provide attriburtes and definitions. In February, following the review of all the metadata elements, the Technical Working Group plans to split into subgroups to focus on each of its areas of focus (as defined in its charge) in order to move more quickly in its work.

Discovery to Delivery Topic Committee

ESPReSSO (Establishing Suggested Practices Regarding Single Sign-On) Working Group

Co-chairs: Harry Kaplanian (Serials Solutions), Steven Carmody (Brown University)

ESPReSSO explores practical solutions for improving the success of Single Sign-On (SSO) authentication technologies for providing a seamless experience for the user and makes recommendations for promoting the adoption of one or more of these solutions to make the access improvements a reality. Recommendations have been developed surrounding the use of existing technologies. This ESPReSSO Working Group was primarily concerned with the situation where an organization (a company, a campus, a public library, etc) acquires a license to access specific content, and where the browser user is a member of the group authorized to access that content. This Working Group did not address the situation where an individual would obtain a license for his or her own personal use.

Drafting of the recommended practice document is in its final stages. A draft is expected to be made public for comment in early 2011. An article on the work of this group, including an overview of the recommendations that will be available in their final publication, will be published in the next issue of NISO's quarterly magazine, ISQ.

NISO/UKSG KBART Phase 2 Working Group


Co-chairs: Andreas Biedenbach (Springer Science+Business Media), Sarah Pearson (University of Birmingham)

The NISO/UKSG KBART Phase II Working Group was formed in March 2010, and is tasked with providing support for the Phase I Recommended Practice, NISO RP-9-2010, KBART: Knowledge Bases and Related Tools, as well as to develop a second recommended practice to build on the recommendations of the first publication. The working group has thus far concentrated the first part of their charge, promoting KBART via presentations and articles and adding content to their website explaining the benefits of KBART. In addition, a KBART Registry of knowledge base supply chain contacts is available, and includes those organizations that have officially endorsed KBART. Work has also begun on the next-stage recommendations, which focus on the more advanced, complex issues that cause problems in this area, including e-books, conference proceedings, hosting services, open access content, and more.

NCIP (NISO Circulation Interchange Protocol) Standing Committee

Chair: Mike Dicus (Ex Libris)
Maintenance Agency: EnvisionWare (contact: Rob Walsh)

This standing committee provides guidance to the continuously maintained standard, ANSI/NISO Z39.83-2008, NISO Circulation Interchange Protocol (NCIP). In January, Mike Dicus, Voyager Product Manager, Ex Libris, Inc. assumed the role of chair for this committee. Mike has been an active member of the committee and will provide excellent leadership to the group as it focuses on maintenance, outreach, and implementation support.

The standing committee has approved a maintenance Version 2.01 -- expected out in early February -- that is aimed primarily at correcting defects identified in the standard and ensuring that the standard and the NCIP schema agree with one another. Further, some structural changes have been made in the standard to improve the presentation of the information and make it more usable for implementers. For example, much of Section 5 has been rearranged so that it is presented in the same order that the elements appear in the NCIP schema. Additionally, the generic pattern for error responses is now described in the overview portion of Section 5, and specific details for error responses are given in the context of the individual services only when they diverge from the general pattern. Two substantive changes have been made. First, Bibliographic Record Id has been made repeatable within Bibliographic Description. Second, Request Item has been changed so that it now accepts both Bibliographic Record Id and Item Id, and both elements are now repeatable.

In addition, the group has drafted a support document on "Core Messages Explained," which provides additional information about the core messages that this committee recommends for an implementation of NCIP. Implementation of NCIP continues to grow, with several implementations of Version 2 underway. NCIP has been shown to both reduce staff time and speed up the devlivery of materials -- thus the continued call for the use of NCIP for resource sharing and self-service applications. The NCIP Implementers Registry, released late 2010, provides vendor profiles that includes contact information, product information, and details about active implementations, so as to help libraries and other implementers better understand who is using NCIP.

Physical Delivery of Library Resources Working Group

Co-chairs: Valerie Horton (Colorado Library Consortium), Diane Sachs-Silveira (Tampa Bay Library Consortium)

The NISO Physical Delivery of Library Resources Working Group's interest lies in identifying methods for improving performance and reducing the cost of moving materials between a library that owns an item and another library whose patron wants to use the item. The scope of their document is limited to the external delivery of items between separately administered libraries, though many recommendations could apply to delivery between branches of a single library system, as well. External delivery can include consortial delivery within a shared system, a region, a state, or a country. It can also be described as items moving through a standard interlibrary loan request. The group's recommendations focus on ensuring that the physical delivery of library materials happens in the most cost-effective and time-sensitive manner possible. All aspects of the physical move are covered: labeling, packaging, automation, and receiving the item.

Draft content for the final report is in the editing stage, prior to a final review by the working group before an expected early spring 2011 public release for comment.