Thursday, April 7, 2011

Re: New terminology & linked records

Posting to Autocat

On Wed, 6 Apr 2011 21:04:10 -0700, J. McRee Elrod wrote:
<snip>
The purpose of all this is to create linkages not now created? Linking to expressions in languages one does not read, or in physical genres not desired, seems of little utility to me.
...
I'm feeling a bit discouraged, particularly when development of our ILSs, both OPACs and cataloguing modules, is so badly needed.
</snip>
I'm feeling discouraged too, especially when I read something like the discussion in Library Journal "The future of the ILS" http://www.libraryjournal.com/lj/home/889595-264/the_future_of_the_ils.html.csp, e.g.:

"BILL SCHICKLING, POLARIS LIBRARY SYSTEMS: I think our biggest issue is in the past: when we presented automation to libraries, we couldn’t present the automation as a way to replace librarians. Well, the librarians are now gone. A lot of libraries have lost a lot of staff, and they need better automation to continue to operate, to bring the services to their communities that they want. And I think being able to link communities is still a big part of what libraries do, and providing software to do that is a big part."

And when I see what is happening in the area of "search" as researched by the likes of Google, IBM, Facebook and others, it doesn't make me feel much better either.

It's clear that *our products* must now fit into *the new universe* since it seems as if these new services feel can do without us far more easily than we can do without them.

At the same time I still think the needed changes to our catalogs can be done, but we need to find out what our patrons want and need to try to keep them and/or have them return. Is the solution the FRBR user tasks? Obviously, I think: No way.

What we need is a lot of improvisation and failures, and once in awhile, a success.

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