[OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] Feature inquiry

Deanna Frazee dfrazee at ci.killeen.tx.us
Tue Oct 7 10:15:10 EDT 2008

But it is relevant to Evergreen development, at least in the sense that
tagging is something that may or may not belong in any good ILS.  And I
agree, most library catalogs suffer from poor authority control.  I try
to devote a few hours per week to clean up the most egregious problems
in ours, but that only scratches the surface.

My problem with tagging is that it needs some sort of moderation or at
least a good spell checker that can suggest a list of exist options from
which the user can select.  Sort of a two step process where the user
types the tag they think they would like to use, and a list of similar
existing terms pops up.  They can select from the list or select their
own.  It still allows for the person to add to the clutter by going on
with yet another version of the word, but with any luck, maybe they will
choose an existing one instead.

Of course, I also want a bigger building, more money for databases and a
more open hours.  I tend to want things that I don't get.

Deanna Frazee
Killeen City Library System
(254) 501-8995
(254) 501-7704 (fax)
dfrazee at ci.killeen.tx.us
> -----Original Message-----
> From: open-ils-general-bounces at list.georgialibraries.org
> general-bounces at list.georgialibraries.org] On Behalf Of Stuart Miller
> Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 4:33 PM
> To: Evergreen Discussion Group
> Subject: RE: [OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] Feature inquiry
> Deanna,
> I certainly don't object to making tagging optional, but I think it
> is something that every library should offer.
> I agree that tagging can be quite messy and inevitably leads to
> such as you describe. But after all, you DID find the product with
> the one term, so does it matter that others added many variants?
> I agree that using controlled vocabulary schemes can sometimes be more
> efficient, but I think we see tagging as a boon for any group with a
> shared interest, especially when LCSH doesn't really cut it.
> And students appear to ENJOY this capability--and probably assign tags
> that are more easily recognizable among their peers than some of the
> rather bizarre and sometimes woefully outdated LC headings. And,
> from the subject cataloging I've seen in our large database, I'm not
> that librarians can lay any special claim to consistency or scientific
> rigor when assigning subject headings. I think any group--academically
> inclined or otherwise--has its own informal lingo that is well served
> tagging.
> Sorry, not really directly relevant to Evergreen development!
> Stuart Miller
> -----Original Message-----
> From: open-ils-general-bounces at list.georgialibraries.org
> general-bounces at list.georgialibraries.org] On Behalf Of Deanna Frazee
> Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 3:57 PM
> To: Evergreen Discussion Group
> Subject: RE: [OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] Feature inquiry
> > And while you're asking, what about tagging? I think it's fair to
> that
> > Web 2.0 features are expected these days--and not just by the
> > users. We need to keep library user interfaces more up-to-date more
> > quickly than has been the case in the past. E.g., most database
> vendors
> > had citation export features LONG before we got it into the old
> I partially agree with Stuart, yet I think tagging is highly
> since it allows for so much randomness as to be useless in many cases.
> In particular, I think we give up too much when we bow to having
> uncontrolled headings.  For example, in a recent search to replace my
> vacuum cleaner, I discovered a product on Amazon.com with the
> tags:  vacuum, vacuums, vacuum cleaner, vacuum cleaners, great and a
> variety of misspellings of "vacuum".
> Starting with the obvious "great" is not a useful tag unless you are
> putting it on your own book list to remind you which books were most
> enjoyable.  Beyond that, we have a situation that begs for a nice
> checker and suggestions for what the person really meant.
> Yes, the ability to tag should be there.  But make it a feature that
> be turned off by those of us who do not want it.
> Deanna Frazee
> Killeen City Library System

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