On 09/11/2012 12:23, Dave Caroline wrote:
If the professionals did catalogue the subjects (contents and the author names) perhaps I would moan less, but I came across another couple of cases recently.
I got a box of cheap books at an auction, one rough book I looked through has an excellent discussion on a famous colliery disaster.A google search of “investigation into the causes of fracture in the Hartley Colliery pit engine beam” finds archive.org’s uncorrected scan of the contents page in a version of the book and a lot of secondary sources. Using the British Library’s search does not find it although they have the book. widening the search to “Hartley colliery” is better but is mostly poems and sermons.If you wish to research into the demolition of the ship Mauritania 1906-1938 after some investigation you find references to a talk “Demolition of the Mauretania M. Wilkinson”. A search for that finds a few spurious and my site (not professional I catalogued the subjects!) and Worldcat which points at the copy in the National Maritime Museum which seems to the the paper on its own. mine is bound in an annual volume “Manchester Association of Engineers transactions 1939-1940”. So why did the copy in National Maritime Museum not come top of the google list, answers on a postcard to the National Maritime Museum 🙂
I am trying to figure out your questions. I assume that “investigation into the causes of fracture in the Hartley Colliery pit engine beam” is the title of the book you are interested in. When you search this title in Google, you get the link into the text file in the Internet Archive http://www.archive.org/stream/engineeringfact01browgoog/engineeringfact01browgoog_djvu.txt However, at the top is a link “See other formats” and you can see the page images. Going into the book itself based on the table of contents for the title you gave, p. 79 (pdf p. 109) http://archive.org/stream/engineeringfact01browgoog#page/n109/mode/1up does not bring me to a separately titled section and I am puzzled at this point. The title of the book is “Engineering facts and figures for 1863”. It is difficult to leaf through this online and may have more than one year bound together. This may contain your book or not. If you search Worldcat for “Engineering facts and figures” you get a number of hits for the serial http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=%22engineering+facts+and+figures%22&qt=results_page
When you mention “Demolition of the Mauretania” by Wilkinson, in the Maritime museum catalog I discover that it is a pamphlet of 32 pages and published in 1940. http://librarycatalogue.rmg.co.uk/uhtbin/cgisirsi/OQuWI83EmI/0/324340011/8/62537/The+demolition+of+the+Mauretania. There are no subject headings on the record. When you search the serial “Manchester Association of Engineers transactions” in Worldcat, you again get a number of hits http://www.worldcat.org/search?qt=worldcat_org_all&q=Manchester+Association+of+Engineers+transactions. For the moment I will assume that the copy in the Maritime museum is an offprint of this journal. So there seems to be a number of copies available.
Apparently the reason that your items do not come up more readily in Worldcat is that a library catalog is normally focused on complete pieces and not on articles, especially with journals. So, with the examples above, these seem to be separate articles taken from the journals, and therefore normally not cataloged separately, except for the occasional offprint as we see at the Maritime museum. For individual articles, the searcher is expected to go to separate indexes. In those cases, when you find an article you want, you must then look up the title of the serial in the catalog where the journal article is held. In modern terms, you look up these things in Google Scholar or Microsoft Academic Search, and if your browser is configured correctly, you can automatically search the journal in your own catalog. The items you mention are probably too old to be in those databases but there are newer articles on those topics.
Concerning why something does or does not come up number 1 in Google is always a mystery and a deeply-held secret. Another secret, but it should not be, is a special way of searching Google that is fabulous: the qualifier “intext:”. Searching your book that way looks very useful https://www.google.com/search?q=intext%3A%22demolition+of+the+mauretania%22+intext%3Awilkinson. If you look at the Google Books metadata page http://books.google.it/books/about/The_Demolition_of_the_Mauretania.html?id=UyznSAAACAAJ, and you scroll to the bottom, you will find the bibliographic record, probably loaded through Worldcat.
So in a way, it did come to the top. By the way, if you want to search for the Mauretania in a library catalog that uses the Library of Congress authorized forms, the heading is “Mauretania (Ship)” which distinguishes it from “Mauretania (Kingdom)”. Tough to do that in a full-text search. But of course, if you search Worldcat for “Mauretania (Ship)” as a subject you will *not* get the copy at the Maritime museum because it has no subject headings, just like the example of Brazil in the Smithsonian Flickr collection. For the colliery disaster, I have found “Coal mine accidents” and/or “Mine explosions” both subdivided by place, e.g. Coal mine accidents –England –Hartley.