Current Cites (Digital Library SunSITE)

Volume 10, no. 10, October 1999

Edited by Teri Andrews Rinne

The Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720
ISSN: 1060-2356 - http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/CurrentCites/1999/cc99.10.10.html

Contributors: Terry Huwe, Michael Levy, Leslie Myrick, Margaret Phillips, Jim Ronningen, Lisa Rowlison, Roy Tennant, Lisa Yesson

Editor's Note: A hearty welcome to two new Current Cites contributors who debut with this month's issue: Michael Levy, Electronic Services Librarian at UCB's Boalt School of Law and Leslie Myrick, who works on the SCAN Project in the Electronic Text Unit of UCB Library Systems Office. And an even heartier welcome back to one of Current Cites' original contributors, Lisa Rowlison, now Coordinator of Bibliographic Services at California State University, Monterey Bay.

American Association of Law Libraries. Committee on Citation Formats. Universal Citation Guide Madison, WI: State Bar of Wisconsin, 1999. - The question of how to cite court opinions, legislative materials and administrative rules and regulations is crucial to the practice of law. As the authors of the Universal Citation Guide (UCG) state in their introduction "current citation rules were crafted for the gilded age of the law book and this symmetry is disintegrating as computer technology reshapes the legal record." After many years of work with federal and state courts, the American Bar Association, and various public interest organizations the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) has produced a comprehensive set of citation principles that will allow for both medium and vendor-neutral citation. By adopting the principles laid out in the UCG courts will be able to provide a citation to a court case that is not dependent on a particular legal publisher or a particular format of publication. For court opinions this means using five data elements: case name, year, court, opinion number and paragraph number. Thus far eleven states have adopted uniform citation, the most significant being Wisconsin. While the UCG isn't designed to be scintillating reading, it is clearly explained and the rules relatively simple to follow. It's overarching importance lies in the fact that it is the most significant attempt to date to address citation in the digital medium and to cut the ties of dependence on large legal publishers. While the UCG isn't available in electronic form, a tentative draft (from 1998) is available at: http://www.aallnet.org/committee/citation/ucguide.pdf - ML

Besser, Howard. "Digital Image Distribution" D-Lib Magazine 5(10) (October 1999) (http://www.dlib.org/dlib/october99/10besser.html). - This paper is a report on the UC Berkeley study The Cost of Digital Imaging Distribution: The Social and Economic Implications of the Production, Distribution, and Usage of Image Data (http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/Imaging/Databases/1998mellon/). The purpose of the study was to explore such questions as "As we construct new electronic information systems, what are the implications of merging content and metadata from multiple sources? How do the costs and services in a digital distribution scheme differ from those in an analog one? What steps can we take to entice users who currently rely upon analog resources to begin seriously employing digital resources?" Specifically, the study focuses on the experiences of the Museum Educational Site Licensing Project (MESL), which began in 1995. The bulk of the paper describes a number of interesting findings from the project and the subsequent analysis. Although Besser is an advocate for digital imaging, he pulls no punches here in identifying key problem areas and issues that require resolution. This paper is essential reading for anyone interested in digital image collections. - RT

Ensign, David. "West's Copyright Claim to Star Pagination Denied by Second Circuit" AALL Spectrum 2(10) (July 1999): 12, 35. (http://www.aallnet.org/products/pub_sp9907.pdf) - In this brief and succinct article on recent copyright decisions regarding the West Publishing Company (now West Group, part of Thomson Corporation), Ensign explains the importance of "star pagination" in legal publishing and the possible effects on the market for print and electronic compilations of court decisions. Two recent opinions from the Second Circuit have seriously undermined West's claims that their use of star pagination and that the selection and arrangement of prefatory information in court opinions is copyrightable. The ability of other publishers — especially those producing opinions in electronic format — to insert page numbers from West's National Reporter System is crucial in having a viable competitive market in legal publishing. With the Supreme Court refusing to hear appeals on these two cases it would seem that a major blow has been given to one of the behemoths of the legal publishing world. - ML

Hyman, Karen. "Customer Service and the 'Rule of 1965'" American Libraries 30(9) (October 1999): 54-58. - Hyman puts forth an intriguing and all-too-likely premise: "customer service, according to the Rule of 1965, defines anything the library did prior to 1965 as basic; everything else is extra." To back up her claim, she cites a number of examples of the apparent application of this "rule" to justify not offering new services. She also offers a "quiz" to see whether you are applying this rule in your library. Hyman then concludes with the following five things you can start doing today: "1) Remember that the customer is not the enemy; 2) Create a climate in your library that supports change; 3) Survey the environment continuously; 4) Redirect resources; and, 5) Treat every customer like a person." Hyman delivers a well-deserved kick in the tail, which I hope will propel us into a better customer service posture and render the "Rule of 1965" obsolete. - RT

Lee, Stuart D. Scoping the Future of the University of Oxford's Digital Library Collections Oxford: Bodleian Library, University of Oxford, 1999 (http://www.bodley.ox.ac.uk/scoping/). - Although this report is for the internal use of Oxford University, "outsiders" can benefit from it in a number of ways. The report provides a high-level overview of some (but certainly not all) national and international digital library initiatives and a thorough listing of Oxford-based digital projects and collections. A significant portion of the paper is devoted to findings from the interviews conducted of both on campus staff and others active in digitization projects. Accompanying appendices provide additional detail on these findings. The final part of the paper is devoted to specific recommendations for better coordinating and managing Oxford's digital initiatives, largely by establishing Oxford Digital Library Services. Any organization, in particular large universities, managing a diverse range of digitization projects will likely find this report to be useful. - RT

Mappa Mundi (http://mappa.mundi.net) - There is a new breed of cartologist out there "mapping the Web" in all its aspects; prominent amongst them is Martin Dodge, the creator of a site aptly entitled An Atlas of Cyberspaces (http://www.cybergeography.org/atlas/topology.html). Dodge is also a regular contributor to a website which I am perhaps unfelicitously naming this month's "Site/Cite for Sore Eyes," not only for its drop-dead gorgeous graphics throughout, but also for its cyber-cartographically-tinged content, served up in eminently digestible portions. Patently a forum for Invisible Worlds Inc., the developers (with Danny Goodman in the lead) of the EdgarSpace portal, Mappa Mundi nevertheless addresses issues germane to any serious Web navigator. A recent article on trace routes (http://mappa.mundi.net/maps/archive/maps_004.html) will serve as a case in point. The study of trace routes as a tool for keeping networks running smoothly is a clear manifestation of the practical side of mapping the net. The article in question is rather basic in intent and structure: it essentially compares the performance of three commercially available traceroute applications: GeoBoy, NeoTrace and Visual Route. What is striking is the author's cyber-geographical slant, and the added value lading the article itself (great screen-shots) and the sidebars (links galore). One sidebar, for instance, offers a chance to test-run a triangulating Web tracer from Canberra, Australia to the Mappa Mundi server, which sits presumably somewhere across the San Francisco Bay. The Map of the Month archives are presently mapping aspects of the Web as disparate as Arpanet and MUDs. - LM

McLoughlin, Glenn J. "Next Generation Internet and Related Initiatives" Journal of Academic Librarianship 25(3) (May 1999): 226-229. - McLoughlin unpacks the Internet alphabet soup giving historical perspective and current status to the many federal computing and communications efforts. Included in his treatment are the Next Generation Internet (NGI) initiative, the National Information Infrastructure (NII), the High Performance Computing & Communications initiative (HPCC), the proposed Information Technology for the 21st Century (IT2) program, as well as Internet2. The next time you're waiting for a Web page to load at a snail's pace, consider that the fiscal year 2000 budget request for IT2, HPCC, and the NGI amounts to 1.8 billion dollars, which is to be distributed across six primary agencies. McLoughlin's final question, "can the NCO [National Coordinating Office] ensure that multiple federal computing and communications efforts are effective and efficient, and serve the national interest?"cuts to the heart of the matter, especially since 50 percent of the U.S. population will rely upon and access the Internet in the year 2000. - LR

Medeiros, Norm. "Making Room for MARC in a Dublin Core World" Online (23)6 (Nov. 1999). (http://www.onlineinc.com/onlinemag/OLtocs/OLtocnov4.html) - Among librarians there has been debate about whether the MARC (Machine-Readable Cataloging) format should be replaced, since it was created to mimic in computer form something which is nearly obsolete now: the library catalog card. New methods of resource description have evolved since MARC was designed, but Medeiros points out that the millions of MARC records in online catalogs today aren't going to go away as simpler descriptive formats such as Dublin Core Metadata are implemented for information retrieval, and that MARC will continue to be useful, even in some cases for the description of Internet resources (which is Dublin Core's raison d'etre). He examines the nature of MARC and Dublin Core, contrasts their uses, and describes a developing environment in which they peacefully coexist: the Cooperative Online Resource Catalog (CORC), an OCLC-sponsored project. Participants build the database by contributing records in whichever of the two formats is most appropriate for the level of detail needed. - JR

Moglen, Eben. "Anarchism Triumphant: Free Software and the Death of Copyright" First Monday 4(8) (August 2, 1999) (http://www.firstmonday.org/issues/issue4_8/moglen/). - Moglen, a law professor at Columbia, exercises an insouciant wit in poking holes in the existing concepts of intellectual property. Importantly, he focuses mainly on "real" software: operating systems, and application programs and the like. He declares, "In the digital society, it's all connected. We can't depend for the long run on distinguishing one bitstream from another in order to figure out which rules apply. What happened to software is already happening to music. Their recording industry lordships are now scrambling wildly to retain control over distribution, as both musicians and listeners realize that the middlepeople are no longer necessary." He may have a point, but "bricks and mortar" businesses have done well on the Net, and the "gift economy" of donated labor hasn't hit my neighborhood record store. - TH

Okerson, Ann. "The LIBLICENSE Project and How it Grows" D-Lib Magazine 5(9) (September 1999) (http://www.dlib.org/dlib/september99/okerson/09okerson.html) - Under the aegis of the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), a team of librarians, lawyers and web designers at Yale University Library has launched the LIBLICENSE project (http://www.library.yale.edu/~llicense/index.shtml), a site bristling with tools to arm librarians and other purchasers and purveyors of electronic resources against a proliferating and confusing array of economic and business models for licensing agreements. This is an impressive repository of information which seeks to "de-mystify" and expedite the process of securing the best possible licensing deal, as well as to pave the way for the eventual standardization of electronic licensing agreements. The user will find well-researched sections covering licensing vocabulary (and its judicious deployment), terms and descriptions, as well as bibliography, and links to other licensing sites. Flying in the face of those who might seek to keep such legal arrangements closeted and esoteric, the LIBLICENSE site maintains a page with copious links to actual licenses from both publishers and authors, as well as a page devoted to model national site licenses. The second phase of the grant has underwritten the creation of LIBLICENSE software, freely downloadable, which provides a sharp-looking "Integrated Development Environment" for creating one's own license, replete with reference material and a panoply of options promising to address with the click of a button everything from Authorized Users to Warranties. - LM

Olsen, Florence. "Archivists Struggle to Preserve Crucial Records as Paper Gives Way to Pixels" Chronicle of Higher Education 45(9) (October 22, 1999): A63. - This article provides a good summary of the dilemma facing archivists, who want to preserve e-information for its value as primary material. The ephemeral nature of digital information poses a serious problem over the long term, but that's not news. The news is that archivists and information technology managers may have discovered that they both exist in the same world and have related problems and solutions to share. One can only hope that long term partnerships between preservationists and technologists will yield some solutions before the ephemera is marooned in outmoded operating systems, or other subdirectories in the multi-platform dust bin of history. - TH

O'Reilly, Tim. "Where the Web Leads Us" xml.com (October 6, 1999) (http://www.xml.com/pub/1999/10/tokyo.html) - For the latent mark-up code-monkey in all of us there is xml.com (http://www.xml.com), where, interspersed amongst hard-core technical articles archived on the site, there are plenty of useful "how-to's" for beginners or the curious. I would single out any of Norm Walsh's contributions, e.g. "A Technical Introduction to XML" (http://www.xml.com/pub/98/10/guide0.html), or Tim Bray's interactive annotated XML 1.0 spec (http://www.xml.com/xml/pub/axml/axmlintro.html). In a similarly didactic vein, the October 6th issue of xml.com offers a version of a recent talk given at Linux World by publisher Tim O'Reilly, addressing how Open Source protocols and tools (TCP/IP, SMTP, BIND, Apache, HTML/SGML/XML, Perl, Unicode) will continue to shape the future of the Web. The message is schematically simple: O'Reilly traces the evolution of the computer/IT industry through a series of paradigm shifts, first unleashed when IBM released the specs for the PC: from hardware to software to what he labels infoware, i.e. information-heavy sites such as Amazon.com or E*Trade, which marry powerful backends to deceptively rich and simple user interfaces. This article is also a cautionary tale: lest we dance too ebuliently in the wake of victories over Goliath, Microsoft has indeed exhibited some Hydra-like tendencies in its ability to come back and create applications which target specific open source markets, such as ASP as a response to Perl/CGI or Exchange Server over against Sendmail. In another vein, when the "next killer app" is so heavily entrenched in the open source software which makes the Web possible, we may even find ourselves facing a new type of proprietary infoware giant and empire. - LM

Prinsen, Jola G.B. and Hans Geleijnse. "The International Summer School on the Digital Library" D-Lib Magazine 5(10) (October 1999) (http://www.dlib.org/dlib/october99/prinsen/10prinsen.html). - In a field that is in the midst of inventing itself (digital librarianship), there are few opportunities for instruction and (re)training of working professionals. The most notable exception is the International Summer School on the Digital Library, offered for the past four years at Tilburg University in the Netherlands. In an interesting and apparently effective fashion, the Tilburg University Library and Computer Centre jointly launched a commercial venture (Ticer, at http://www.ticer.com/) to manage the school. But what is really interesting are the things they've learned. For example, they found that participants have wanted more opportunity for discussion despite the increase of group work and discussion sessions each year. They also found, not surprisingly, that the participants were more technologically aware and adept each successive year. In addition, as technical problems recede in the face of an increasing diversity of "off the shelf" solutions, manager and organizational issues become more pressing. This is also reflected in the attendance, with the largest single group being composed of managerial staff (60% hold middle or upper management positions). - RT

Tidwell, Alan. "The Virtual Agora: Online Ethical Dialogues and Professional Communities" First Monday 4 (7) (July 5, 1999) (http://www.firstmonday.org/issues/issue4_7/tidwell/). - Tidwell draws an analogy between digital forums and the Greek agora, or marketplace, which was where citizens met to discuss and debate topics of importance. He asserts that the Net is a new agora, giving voice to many, and replicating the raucous culture of public debate that was far more unruly in Greek city states than in most forms of modern discourse. He extends the metaphor by focusing on the use of Web technology in fostering and sustaining ethical debates between professional communities. - TH


Current Cites 10(10) (October 1999) ISSN: 1060-2356
Copyright © 1999 by the Library, University of California, Berkeley. All rights reserved.

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