Cataloging the Web

Making the WWW More Accessible
 
 
The April 26, 1997, week-end issue of Slate contains an article by Bill Barnes in his Webhead column, "Search Me," on the inadequacy of access to "the vast resources" of the Web as compared to any library. He examines the various search engines available, and details how unsatisfactory they are. He didn't really propose a solution to the problem, but his conclusion included the following:

A lot of people have discussed this problem, but no one that I have discovered has proposed a simple, comprehensive, workable solution as yet. I posted to Slates's "The Fray" an outline of the following possible overall structure that might meet the problem. It is presented in more detail here in hopes that other people might have some input, and we can collectively arrive at a mechanism for providing better access to the WWW.

 
Table of Contents

1. Cataloging the Web: Titles, Abstracts, Names

2. Cataloging the Web: Subjects

3. Problems & Applications

4. Conclusion: A System for the Web

 
Appendix

Recent Postings Archive

The Initial Posting

 
 
Eyler Coates
    These exchanges have been taking place under the subject, "Cataloging the Web," on the Listserv/Newsgroup, bit.listserv.autocat (AUTOCAT: Library Cataloging and Authorities Discussion Group) since April 27, 1997. They are presented here in their entirety in a compilation with a minimum of editing to the text itself. Duplications, signatures, and other extraneous and irrelevant materials have been removed. Details on the sources, authors, etc., are available at the Newsgroup sites. The text of the discussions is presented here in a subject-related order, rather than in the sequence in which it occurred on the Newsgroup.

 
Douglas Winship
    Please note that Mr. Coates, who originated this thread, wishes to have a comprehensive compilation, with slight editing, of the discussion, to be available on his web site. If you participate in the discussion and have no objection to this you need say nothing. If you DO object, please participate if you wish but CLEARLY state in EACH item you send on this topic that your material is NOT to be included in his compilation. He may assume tacit consent if you do not explicitly deny it. Mr. Coates assures us this is strictly nonprofit. Your tacit consent for him to include your material on his website does not constitute consent for any other use. If you wish to know what he does in the way of editing please contact him directly, or take a look at the website.

    Please keep this in mind for as long as this discussion continues.

 

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. . Comments received here, as well as those posted on the Newsgroups, will be posted temporarily in the order received, and in their original form, on the Recent Postings Archive. Those same postings will be included permanently under the proper headings on these pages.

. . EDITING: As much as possible, spelling and other obvious grammatical errors will be corrected. Sometimes words will be inserted to facilitate transitions or to clarify references. The original postings, available in the Archives, are treated as drafts, and minor changes thereto will not be indicated in the redacted text. This practice more or less follows that of newspaper editors in printing Letters to the Editor. There will be, of course, absolutely no intention whatsoever to alter the meaning of the posting. If anyone thinks an alteration is unjustified or misleading, they can notify the editor and the original version will be restored (with appropriate editorial disclaimers). If anyone wants to "improve" what they have previously written, that can be done by the same process, and probably without disclaimers. The purpose here is to produce thoughtful analysis, not to make an historical record of a Newsgroup event.


 

Copyright 1997 by Eyler Robert Coates, Sr.

All rights reserved. Each contributor to these pages retains the copyright to their own statements, and all quotations therefrom must be attributed to the contributor, not to the editor or any other entity.

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