I think this makes perfect sense. We need this forum. The catalog is going to be with us in one form or another. One thing that never ceases to amaze me is how the library field is sooo quick to throw overboard useful tools just for the sake of something different. The ILS in its present form has LOTS of room for improvement but it doesn't mean we have to hide it behind other labels or have to turn it into some nebulous concept that doesn't mean anything.
Why do librarians instinctively run away from their purpose?
I've worked all over the place in the library world and I work in a public library now. Here on Mount Olympus we spend so much time arguing pendantically about MARC-this and Z39.50-that, and fretting and worrying about what OCLC is up to. All the while our patrons are coming up to the OPAC search stations and using the all too limiting user interface we present them to type in the one or two keywords that they know in order to find something in the library. Do they care about all what we talk about? No!!! They just want to find their book or resource in whatever form it is in, get it, and go on with their lives.
The catalog is one of the the main interfaces to the library that all patrons use. How can we make that experience most productive? We need to pay lot of attention to that.
>From: Michael Bowden <[log in to unmask]>
>Sent: Jun 5, 2006 9:04 PM
>To: [log in to unmask]
>Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] next generation opac mailing list
>I have been reading the comments here and I am in favor of creating a
>list for discussing the next generation catalog/information
>system/whatever. I have been to 2 workshops in the last month where I
>have heard 2 people from different universities talk about OCLC being
>*THE* interface to the library catalog in the future -- truly a
>WorldCat. I consider myself open to new ideas but this one really
>worries me. And when you look at OCLCs long range plans, they want to
>become *THE* library interface.
>We need something. My ILS has decided that their next generation
>catalog will be a portal with its own database, etc. I already have one
>database with MARC data why do I need another to hold the non-MARC data.
> Why isn't my ILS working to expand/create the next generation MARC
>record? I think the next generation catalog goes hand and hand with the
>next generation of MARC.
>Harrisburg Area Community College
>>>> [log in to unmask] 6/5/2006 8:17:07 PM >>>
>On Jun 5, 2006, at 7:33 PM, Alexander Johannesen wrote:
>> What's wrong with keeping such discussions to this very list? It's
>> very on-topic, and I'm not sure I need yet another list (I think I'm
>> up to around 30-something now!).
>I understand this sentiment. Really!
>On the other hand we are a bunch o' hackers, and there is more to
>this thing (whatever it is called) than code. We need the perspective
>of catalogers, reference types, administrators, vendors, etc. Thus,
>the idea for creating a new list.
>Eric Lease Morgan
>University Libraries of Notre Dame
>I'm hiring a Senior Programmer Analyst.