Agenda for HOLLIS Liaisons Meeting #80
Notes from the September Meeting
Karen also reviewed the membership and responsibilities of the two Recon oversight committees. The Retrospective Conversion Project Oversight Committee is a high-level administrative body responsible for general oversight of the Recon project, but with particular emphasis on the financial aspects. Members of the Committee are: Sandra Coleman, John Cooper, Candace Corvey, Richard De Gennaro, Dale Flecker, Douglas Funkhouser, Barbara Graham, Judith Messerle, Robert H. Scott, Sidney Verba (Chair), and Karen Carlson Young. The Committee has no regular meeting schedule, but will convene as needed during the project.
The Retrospective Conversion Project Operations Advisory Committee is responsible for monitoring the operational aspects of Recon: establishing the queue of libraries awaiting conversion, arbitrating conflicting requests for Recon projectservices, advising the Recon Project Manager, and ensuring smooth operation of Recon activities. Members of this committee are Robert Buckwalter, Marianne Burke, Priscilla Caplan, Mollie Della Terza, Michael Fitzgerald, Jeffrey Horrell, Hinda Sklar, Robin Wendler, Linda West (Chair), and Karen Carlson Young. This committee will meet every two weeks and minutes will be distributed in print and on the LIBINFO electronic discussion list.
OIS relocation -- an update. OIS (formerly OSPR) is back in full operation in its new location in Suite 404, 1280 Massachusetts Avenue. There is still some construction work in progress that was not completed before the move, so forgive our appearance while we finish renovations. OIS will host an open house in the new location later this fall (time to be announced), but library staff are welcome to visit any time.
Staffing changes in OIS. There will be several staffing changes in OIS this fall. Tracey announced that Patti Fucci has joined OIS Operations as an Information Processing Specialist. She will assist Lauren Caulton in the distribution of HOLLIS products. Patti currently works from 8 a.m. to 12 noon, but will be joining OIS full time later this fall to handle the increased Operations workload resulting from University Library Recon activities. [Editor's note: Patti went to full time starting 1 October.]
Steve Thornton, OIS Network Specialist, has resigned his position to relocate to the West Coast. We all wish Steve the best in his new life in sunny California. OIS has hired a new Network Specialist, Ciata Victor. Ciata comes to us from the Center for International Affairs with several years experience installing and maintaining network and communications hardware and software. Ciata started on 21 September and with Steve's assistance she has begun work on the list of outstanding network projects. OIS appreciates everyone's patience while Ciata becomes acclimated to the wild world of HOLLIS network support. If you have a question about network support or about any outstanding network issues, please contact Ciata Victor or Linda Marean in OIS.
OIS also welcomes Amy Lozano, Project Manager of the VINE. The VINE is a campus-wide information system under joint development by OIT and the University Library. It is designed to be a centrally located and up-to-date source of information of interest to members of the Harvard community. (For more information about the VINE, consult an article on page 6 of this newsletter.) Amy works for the Office for Information Technology but she operates out of OIS, under the supervision of Priscilla Caplan, Head of the OIS Systems Development Division.
And last but certainly not least, Curtis Kendrick, the new Assistant Director in the University Library for the Harvard Depository, started on 1 October. Although Mr. Kendrick is not a member of OIS, he will occupy an office in Suite 404 as well.
There are now approximately 26 staff members occupying space in OIS' new location, with a few more scheduled to join over the next few months! Most are OIS staff members who can be reached by calling the usual number, 495-3724. However, the VINE Project, Depository Assistant Director, and RECON have separate telephone numbers. Please consult the OIS contact list appended to this issue for more information. An OIS organizational chart is also attached to this Newsletter.
HOLLIS circulation highlights. Tracey reminded liaisons that Countway Library began using HOLLIS automated circulation in early August. Kate Ellis added that the Kennedy School recently began using automated circulation to process materials from their reserves collection. In total, seven Harvard libraries now use HOLLIS circulation: Cabot, Countway, Hilles, Kennedy School, Lamont, Physics Research, and Widener.
New HOLLIS Tag Tables distributed. OIS recently began distributing the new edition of the HOLLIS Tag Tables. Most units will have received them by this time. [Editor's note: Since liaisons, OIS has found a problem with the distribution of the Tag Tables. Consult an article below in Notes and Reminders for further information.]
HU database reaches 3 millionth record. HOLLIS has passed another milestone! On 18 August, the HU database reached the three million record mark with the addition of the following book record: OIS has traced this record to the Post-Charge Linkage (PCL) Project in Widener Library. The PCL Project began in 1989 as part of Widener's automated circulation implementation. Project staff perform a number of functions, most important of which is linking unlinked item records with the correct bibliographic records in the HU database. These unlinked item records are created predominantly at the circulation desk when a patron charges out a book which is not barcoded. Project staff also: migrate records from the OW database, add Widener locations to existing HU records, and create new records for materials that have never had an online record.
Since OIS cannot trace the creation of this record to a single PCL staff member, the University Library celebrates all PCL staff: Marek Biedul-Kornilowicz (group leader), Hope Perlman, Ewa Gorski, Cheryl Abbott, and two former PCL staff members who were present when this record was created: Laura Carter and Sandra Friedman. Three (million?) cheers for this hard-working group. And thanks as well to all HOLLIS staff members who work to contribute to HOLLIS as a growing resource for Harvard students, faculty, and scholars.
Recon and changes to HU bibliographic records. Robin Wendler summarized for liaisons the changes to HU bibliographic records that OIS has implemented in preparation for University Library-wide retrospective conversion.
On Tuesday, September 15th, OIS added a new fixed field element to the HOLLIS MARC bibliographic format. The field will have the label VENDOR, and appear on the second line of the bibliographic field where the SRCH field used to be. The field will contain a code which tells the external source of the record. Whenever a record originating in OCLC, RLIN, the BF file, or another outside source is added to HOLLIS as new, or replaces an existing HOLLIS record, the VENDOR field is set with the correct source code. This field cannot be changed online. An article providing further details on the VENDOR element appeared in the September HOLLIS Newsletter.
OIS has recently extended subfield 5 (institution to which field applies) to all fields above 199 in the HOLLIS authority format. Catalogers adding local cross references to authority records can now add a subfield 5 to protect a local reference in the event that the existing record is overlayed by a Recon authority record. OIS recentlydistributed a new HOLLIS Tag Table -- staff should check the authority format chapter to verify which fields allow use of subfield 5. Robin noted that use of subfield 5 may lead to duplicate references as Recon records overlay existing authority records. Catalogers should eliminate any such duplication as they encounter it. Consult an article in the September 1992 HOLLIS Newsletter for further information.
Adding 490 fields to HOLLIS keyword indexes. Allen Bourque (Cabot Science Library) presented a recommendation by the HAAC Recon Task Group on Series Authority Control that OIS add the contents of field 490:0 (series statement untraced) to HOLLIS keyword indexes. What follows are descriptions of the issues leading to this request and the options identified by liaisons.
For the library collections being converted during Recon, the real issue is how to maintain access to series statements that are traced now in local card catalogs but may become untraced (and unsearchable) after Recon data is added to HOLLIS. For various reasons, Harvard catalogers sometimes decide to trace a series locally that the Library of Congress has left untraced. If a Recon record claimed by OCLC contains an untraced series, that is what gets added to the HU database -- despite our local decision to trace the series. The impact of this reversal in local tracing decisions is that untraced series statements (490:0) are currently not searchable in HOLLIS. Hence the Task Group's recommendation that the contents of field 490:0 be searchable by keyword.
In addition to the problem described above, there is the related problem of inconsistencies in series tracing decisions (same series is traced for some records, untraced for others). This has always been a problem tolerated by HOLLIS users, but Recon will amplify its effect as the HU database grows by five million more records. For current cataloging in HU, a Harvard decision to trace a series not traced by LC will remain intact, but Recon records for materials in the same series may have the series untraced. A decision to make the contents of 490:0 fields searchable in HOLLIS would at least in part improve the situation by making the series searchable despite being untraced in some cases and traced in others.
The decision to not index the contents of the 490:0 field was one made by PASE (HAAC Task Group of Public Access and Search Enhancements) during the design of the HOLLIS Public Catalog. The contents of 490 fields often include non-standard data that, when added to HOLLIS indexes, degrades the quality of index searches. Over the years, various library groups have debated the usefulness of making the 490 searchable and the conclusion has always been not to index it. This decision was not arrived at easily or without trepidation, however.
Liaisons agreed that some form of search access to 490:0 data would be desirable, but there was no consensus on the best method. The Task Group recommended keyword access because untraced series are not standardized, so a string search (FIND TI) may not be dependable. Keyword searching avoids this problem because it does not require the user to know the exact and complete word order of the series title. However, keyword has several limitations to consider, including: no search qualification, availability of keyword searching only in catalog mode, and most significantly, a retrieval limit of 250 records in a single search. This retrieval limit is especially troublesome because non-standard series titles in 490 fields increase the amount of "noise" or non-relevant hits in keyword searches.
String searching of 490:0 data also has advantages and disadvantages. The main disadvantage, non-standard forms of series titles, was mentioned above. However, the FIND TI search does have its advantages: a retrieval limit of 5,000 records, search qualification, and availability of FIND TI in both technical services and catalog mode.
Liaisons agreed that this issue needs further investigation. Kate Ellis will ask SSHUSH (Standing Subcommittee of HAAC on User Services in HOLLIS) to consider the issue later this fall. Also this fall, the HAAC Subcommittee on Bibliographic Standards will soon address issues related to serial authority control in Recon. Their decisions may have an impact on this issue as well. OIS will keep everyone posted as investigations proceed. If you have questions about the Recon Task Group's recommendation, contact Allen Bourque (Cabot) or Robin Wendler in OIS.
HOLLIS Fall 1992 enhancements -- an overview. Julie Wetherill from OIS presented an overview of the enhancements planned for the fall release of the HOLLIS Public Catalog. These enhancements include three new databases and a number of minor changes implemented over the summer. Below is a summary of the implementation schedule for these enhancements:
Complete descriptions of the three new databases, Anthropological Literature, Physics Preprints, and ATLA Religion Index, appeared in the September issue of the HOLLIS Newsletter. The information sheets describing these databases have been distributed to HOLLIS liaisons. Later this fall, HOLLIS staff documentation will be updated to reflect these changes. OIS encourages staff to use these Public Catalog databases and contact Julie Wetherill if they have questions.
Of particular interest to the Library community are efforts being made to make VINE available as a menu option on some HOLLIS terminals to facilitate public access. Various library committees are discussing menu design and access, terminal traffic, training and support, logistics, and technical issues regarding the introduction of VINE to in-library terminals.
Amy Lozano, from the Office for Information Technology, started as the full-time VINE project manager on August 17. To support true collaboration, she is working on location at the Library's Office for Information Systems at 1280 Massachusetts Avenue for the duration of the project's implementation, under the direction of Priscilla Caplan, who is also facilitating the Library's participation in VINE's implementation, including addressing terminal access issues.
A VINE Steering Committee was also formed in August, with members John Collins, Graduate School of Education Gutman Library; Larry Dowler, Harvard College Library Public Services; Laura Ferguson, Harvard University Gazette; Jim Fitchett, Harvard Medical School Information Services; Dale Flecker, Harvard University Library Office for Information Systems; Keith Light, Freshman Dean's Office; Virginia MacKay-Smith, Faculty of Arts and Sciences Dean's Office; Amy Lozano, OIT; Ted Pappadopoulos, OIT; Richard Steen, Faculty of Arts and Sciences Computer Services; and Mark Van Baalen, OIT (chair).
The Office for Information Systems will sponsor a demonstration of the VINE for library staff before this new system becomes publicly available. More information will be forthcoming. If you have any questions, please feel free to call Amy Lozano at 495-1821 or contact her via electronic mail at LOZAN@HARVARDA.
The next day, 17 September at approximately 4:34 p.m., OIS made a copy of the HU bibliographic file and sent it on cartridge tape to OCLC. Since this was such an historic event, here are the details for all our trivia buffs -- there were 3,063,276 bibliographic records stored on 24 cartridge tapes. OCLC will perform authority work on these three million HU records (that is, clean up existing headings) as a prelude to actual Recon.
Recon Authority Control, Part I: an Overview and Timeline. On 10 September, the HAAC Recon Task Group sponsored an open meeting for library staff on the authority control issues related to retrospective conversion (Recon). Lynn Schmelz-Keil, Chair of HAAC, introduced Task Group members Priscilla Caplan, Robin Wendler, and Michael Fitzgerald, who spoke about the general process of correcting headings in Recon data, including how OCLC will perform the corrections, how Harvard will process these corrections and check for quality, the effect of the authority control process on cataloging workflow, and how to identify Recon records in the HU database. What follows is the first of a two part article that summarizes their remarks.
Priscilla Caplan, Head of the OIS Development Division, provided a brief summary of the Recon project. For most monographs, Recon involves shipping catalog cards representing a library's retrospective collection to OCLC, where they will be searched against OCLC's database. OCLC will claim matching online records and will key new records for cards that had no matches in the database. The keyed and claimed records will be loaded into HU using slightly enhanced formulas for duplicate detection and resolution. Headings in all new bibliographic records, including both current cataloging and Recon records, will be "cleaned up" by an authority control process at OCLC. Each Harvard library participating in Recon will go through this procedure, although local conditions and priorities will vary in each unit. Karen Carlson Young, Recon Project Manager, will go over all details of this process with each participating library.
This open meeting focussed on the authority control portion of the Recon process, or in other words, how Harvard and OCLC will work to maintain the quality of Recon records added to the HU database.
The first big step in gearing up for Recon is to send OCLC a copy of the HU database, the "base file". [This was done on September 16, 1992.] Headings in these records are first matched against LC authority data, and validated or flipped where appropriate. Headings that match neither authorized nor variant forms on LC authority records will then be run through special programs designed to identify different types of errors, such as abbreviations and misspellings. Errors identified by these programs will be reviewed by human editors before the correction is actually made to the heading. Both whole fields and individual subfields are subject to these tests, so a correction can involve a portion of a heading or the entire heading. OCLC will build a "corrections database" containing the correct forms of headings and all variant forms identified through authority records or by program.
Once the HU database is completed, recon data and Harvard's current cataloging will be run through the same process. The corrections database will grow as unique Harvard headings and their variants are added as successive batches of data are processed by OCLC. OCLC will also be contributing corrected headings as records from its own database are subjected to authority control. The corrections database grows larger and "smarter" as more Recon records are processed by OCLC.
Note that OCLC will get records for correction from two sources. Some records will be pulled from HOLLIS, such as the base file and current cataloging. While the base file is being processed, recon records keyed and claimed by OCLC will also be added to HOLLIS first, and pulled out later for authority processing. For these records, OCLC will send correction transactions targetting individual headings on HOLLIS records. Once the base file is completed, however, OCLC recon records will go directly to OCLC authority processing. These records will be sent to Harvard as full bibliographic records after their headings have been corrected.
The headings covered by this process are:
The headings not covered include:
There are still a number of unresolved issues related to authority control of the headings not covered by the OCLC process. The HAAC Subcommittee on Bibliographic Standards will examine and make recommendations on how to handle these headings.
The second part of this summary, covering Recon authority processing in HOLLIS and how to identify Recon bibliographic records in HOLLIS, will appear in the November HOLLIS Newsletter. If you have questions about Recon, please contact Karen Carlson Young (496-4011).
Notes and Reminders
As a reminder, the following are the 1992 holidays when HULPR and HOLLIS are not available:
If you have any questions, contact Linda Marean in OIS.
Change to a circulation message. For library materials that have been moved from their regular location to a special location (such as being placed on reserve), the message displaying in the HOLLIS Public Catalog has changed slightly. Formerly, the following message would display if an item was placed on the reserve shelf and was not checked out:
The message has now become more specific:
If the item has been checked out, the message still indicates its status and the due date. This change went into affect Tuesday, 15 September. If you have any questions, please contact Kate Ellis in OIS.
Reminder about updating LG records. Now that the 1992 fall semester has begun, OIS reminds libraries to update their LG records with any new information about their hours of operation or services. Each library is responsible for its own LG record; OIS does not make changes. If you need the HULPR password to access LG records, or if you have a question about updating your record, please contact Tim Hanke in the HUL Publications Office, Wadsworth House (495-7793).
Public and staff documentation updates for Fall 1992. Since early September, OIS has distributed to HOLLIS
Anthropological Literature public information sheet (new)
There are a few outstanding issues to be resolved regarding the documentation already released. When OIS distributed the new HOLLIS Tag Tables, the memo that accompanied them instructs liaisons to replace everything in the binder with the new Tag Tables. In fact, liaisons should leave the article citation (format Y) and Library Guide (format Z) sections intact, since they are not part of this update. Liaisons, please check that all copies of the Tag Tables in your unit have the Y and Z sections intact. If you know that you have already discarded sections Y and Z, please contact Eric Young and he will send out new copies. Fortunately, these two formats are rarely consulted (at least in comparison to other formats).
Library staff members with eagle eyes may have already spotted the problem with the three new public information sheets. The sheets describing ATLA Religion Index, Anthropological Literature, and the Physics Preprints database all have on their reverse side a sample record accompanied by annotations. Traditionally, there are lines connecting the annotations with the related part of the sample record, but these lines did not reproduce properly on these sheets. This is not a big problem and should not significantly reduce the usefulness of the sheets, but OIS will distribute new white master copies of each sheet with all lines present. Units should discard the white master of each sheet that accompanied their September shipment and replace it with the new master. OIS will not be distributing new color copies of these sheets. If you have any questions about HOLLIS documentation, please contact Eric Young in OIS.
Products messages on EMS. This is a reminder that library staff should consult the daily OIS products message on HULPR EMS before traveling to OIS to pick up products. OIS is concerned that some staff are interpreting the appearance of a products message to mean that products are ready -- they are not reading the message itself. The appearance of the title 'circulation products' or 'HOLLIS products' does not necessarily signal that the products are available. You must read the message to see if they can be picked up, or if there is a delay. We also state whether there are any products which will not be included. Please be sure to read the entire message as it may save you an unnecessary trip to our office.
New EMS address for OIS. OIS (formerly OSPR) has a new EMS address:
Please address all future EMS mail for the HUL Office for Information Systems to this new address. This mailbox is checked once a day.
Database code on every screen. As of Wednesday, 9 September, OIS has added a change to HOLLIS that causes the database code to display as part of all error messages in the Public Catalog. Previously, error messages displaying near the top of the screen would "blot out" the database code (such as HU, OW), leaving the user with no idea where he/she was in HOLLIS.
As an example, if you type in the search AU ST but forget to put a space between the index identifier (AU) and what you are searching (ST), you now get the same error message as before plus the database code:
If you have any questions, please contact Julie Wetherill in OIS (495-3724).
Response time tests. Response time tests are scheduled for the first Tuesday of each month. Upcoming tests are scheduled for: 3 November, 1 December, 5 January, 1993, and 2 February, 1993. Volunteers should mark their calendars appropriately.
The September response times are actually a combination of September and August timings. These responses are on average the best so far this year and responses under one second during this timing were close to the fastest ever recorded. Also, there was a significant reduction in responses over 4 seconds. Such excellent response is presumably due to the lower system usage prior to the return of students in mid-September.
Sometimes HOLLIS is too helpful... OIS recently discovered that HOLLIS can be overly cooperative when supplying default subfields. It has always been true that HOLLIS operators can omit subfield a and HOLLIS will supply it automatically. However, if you mistakenly type anything other than a single blank after the second colon, the system will helpfully supply you with another default subfield. For example, typing
causes HOLLIS to reformat the field as
HOLLIS currently cannot determine the validity of specific characters when generating a default subfield a. If an operator makes this mistake while updating an existing field, HOLLIS will supply a duplicate subfield a, as in: 260: : a : a Boston, Ma. HOLLIS has not been indexing fields with this problem. OIS is fixing these records and plans on improving indexing to prevent problems in the future. However, it is unlikely that we can prevent this from happening. HOLLIS operators should remember to check their work to insure that duplicate subfield a's are not present, and fix any duplication they do find. If you have further questions, contact Robin Wendler in OIS.