> My (erroneous) assumption was that if a record did not have a broader
term (i.e. a 550 $wg value) then it would sit at the top of the subject
tree, and that they would be the very general subjects headings. As I
found this obviously not the case.
-- You're corrrect - LCSH doesn't work like this. It's not a thesaurus.
> Looking at our authority records it appears that it is not possible
to build a thesaurus like structure which shows the relationship between
-- Is that because your authority records do not have 5XX $wg's in them?
Or because it is not a thesaurus?
All said, take a look at http://id.loc.gov/
ID has all of LCSH available as a bulk download in a couple of flavors
of RDF. In the data, the broader and narrower relationships are
expressed. You could grab one of those and work with the data locally.
Alternatively, you could use a combination of the label service  and
content-negotiation  to query for entries and then extract
broader/narrower relationships in real-time. For example, this label
search will match the lexical word Hurricanes to its resource at ID.
Following it, you'll get the HTML, but add a little content-negotation
and you can get something more computer friendly:
curl -L -H "Accept: application/rdf+xml"
( There is a little short cut to the same - append ".rdf" to the end of
the label request, like so
allowing you to sidestep the content-negotiation altogether. Also works
for ".json" and ".nt")
In any event, you'll see the broader/narrowers in the output.
Hope this helps,
On 10/29/2012 10:04 AM, Stephen Graham wrote:
> Hi All - this is a new area for me, so it might be that I'm barking up the wrong tree or missing something fundamental. We are trying to build a browsable subject list in our discovery service (built on the Endeca technology). The idea would be to expand terms and reveal the facets below which in turn are expandable - a subject tree which our users can browse the narrowr/broader terms.
> We use LCSH and my initial thought was to use the authority records from our catalogue (Symphony) to determine the relationship between terms. Dumping the authority records out I thought that I could use the 550 field - in particular the $w subfield and /0 (special relationship ). My (erroneous) assumption was that if a record did not have a broader term (i.e. a 550 $wg value) then it would sit at the top of the subject tree, and that they would be the very general subjects headings. As I found this obviously not the case. Looking at our authority records it appears that it is not possible to build a thesaurus like structure which shows the relationship between terms.
> I know The Library of Congress offer "Classification Web" (http://www.loc.gov/cds/classweb/). This might be overkill for what we need. Is there an open API which may help achieve what we want?