Author pages in WorldCat

November 15, 2007

Just saw an email newsletter from OCLC announcing “identities” in WorldCat. These act as author pages, summarizing facts about anyone listed in the OCLC database. I just gave a few a whirl and I’m impressed.

I brought up a title (Anne of Green Gables), clicked the Details tab:

Then I was able to access L M Montgomery’s “identity” page and see all sorts of author info. My favorite feature is the publication timeline which shows the frequency with which materials by (or about) an author have been published over the years. The bars in the graph are clickable, by the way.

There are also lists of the author’s titles sorted by number of owning libraries, languages in which the titles were published, a subject-heading tag cloud representative of the author’s works, and a few other displays. All good stuff. OCLC didn’t invent this idea, but including identities (author pages) in their catalog is a welcome development.

Have a look: L M Montgomery, William Shakespeare, Louis Armstrong, Harrison Ford

A few thoughts before class

October 24, 2007

I’m heading off to a social web class (my favorite to teach) but have a half dozen things rattling around in my head.  Just a few to share:

  • I began reading the latest OCLC report last night and think it’s going to be interesting. It seems the Internet has become much more interactive (no surprise there!) but many (probably most) libraries haven’t quite caught on. My hunch is that some libraries may think they understand the new social networking environment that’s taking the world by storm but really don’t know the half of it. I’ll write a more complete post when I’m finished reading it. In the meantime, read the Free Range Librarian’s take on it.
  • David Lee King’s enthusiam should not be missed. Check out his “Social Digital Global Shift” video.
  • I’ll be starting an on-line series of introductions to the sites and tools of the social web next week. As a trainer, I’ve been excited to share this new world with our staff. Over the next few months, I hope this new series might be a resource to staff in other libraries interested in self-paced discovery. More on that tomorrow….
  • And lastly, to all of you going to next week’s Internet Librarian conference: Have fun. I wish I could join you. The program has an all-star line-up and there’s so much to be excited about right now. Bloggers: tell us everything. Flickr friends: take lots of pictures.