Planet Cataloging

December 06, 2016


Getting a million dollar digital collection grant in six easy steps


Many of the libraries I’ve worked with on local digitization efforts start with great ideas about a big collection they could develop…if only they had enough money. Maybe there’s a local trove of unique documents that are historically important. Or thousands of photos recovered from a private collection after a disaster. No matter the source, imaginations run high and big, lofty goals are set. A hopeful dollar figure is calculated and the quest for a grant begins…only to end in disappointment.

Why? The goal is good, the materials are fantastic, the benefit to the community is apparent. In my experience, the search for the “Million Dollar Grant” often fails because it doesn’t follow these six important steps:

  • Step 1: Secure a $1,000 grant.
  • Step 2: Secure a $5,000 grant.
  • Step 3: Secure a $10,000 grant…

You get the picture…but do they?

OK, I admit it’s a cheesy way to introduce the topic. Steps 4–6 are, obviously, go get increasingly larger grants until you land the “big money” that you need to create your digital dream collection. But I’m absolutely serious—the best way to convince a grant-making entity to fund your program is to have a demonstrated series of successes with other grants. And just like with your career, you can’t start out in your dream job, you often have to work your way up from the bottom.

Because while you may have a clear picture in your head of what success looks like, the grant making agency doesn’t. Their picture is of you and your library’s history, reputation and experience. There are almost always lots of people applying for the same grant money. In order for your project to be successful, you have to demonstrate not just that you’ve got a great idea, but that you’ve got the know-how to make it happen.

Grants for digital collections require both a great idea and demonstrated know-how.
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So start small. Find a project you can do that will require many of the same steps as your dream grant, but with lower time, partnership and money commitments. This will give you a chance to practice the process, get some experience and refine your story.

How to get that first, small grant? Get good at setting goals

I support Stephen Covey’s advice of “always begin with the end in mind.” In other words, be goal-oriented. In many cases, libraries think of the “goal” as being “get this collection digitized and online.” Wrong! That’s not a goal, that’s one activity or tactic. Grant makers are interested in goals that emphasize benefits to the communities and people they support. You need to relate your project to their goals. Here are some tips on how to get that thought process started. Work with your colleagues and supervisors to identify:

  • The benefits the program will have to your library
  • The audiences you will reach in the community
  • Benefits to the community—think “before and after” when describing
  • Measurements of those benefits
  • What success looks like at different times along the way
  • What next steps will take your goals even further

For every partner involved, it’s important to have an idea of what success means to them.

As you go through the proposal process, take what you learn from each grant application and put it toward the next grant application. It’s also important to share your successes with other libraries. That will help them in their grant-applying process as well as help you receive future grants.

When you’re ready to ask for that first, small grant

It’s smart to start by looking for grants that don’t require matching funding, since that would essentially double your work. Are there local foundations that support efforts like this? Maybe your state library has a digitization program? The Indiana Memory Digitization Grant guidelines are a good example.

There are many resources to help you with this process. Sometimes, the granting organization even provides resources for writing a winning grant application. Here are some examples that give you an idea of how to proceed:

Whatever your “dream project” may be, starting small is honestly the best first step. It will give you insight into the grant-making process, help you refine goals for all participants and establish a successful track record for your library.

Question: What’s the smallest digitization project you could get a grant for? Be creative, and let us know on Twitter with #OCLCnext.

The post Getting a million dollar digital collection grant in six easy steps appeared first on OCLC Next.

by Taylor Surface at December 06, 2016 04:09 PM

December 05, 2016

Terry's Worklog

MarcEdit Windows/Linux Update

I’ve posted a small update over the weekend to correct an encoding issue when using the Z39.50 client in batch mode and doing a raw query.  You can get the download from the downloads page ( or via the automated update tool.


by reeset at December 05, 2016 06:17 AM

MarcEdit Mac Update

Posted a MarcEdit Mac update.  This syncs the task management and Edit shortcuts with the Windows version.

** 1.9.45
* Enhancement: Task Manager: Implemented the ability to include Edit Shortcuts in Tasks
* Enhancement: Task Manager: Updated Task Manager to complete  network task clean up (error messages, file locking)
* Enhancement: Preferences: Updated preferences to include dialogs to find files and folders.

You can get the file from the downloads page: or via the automated update tool.


by reeset at December 05, 2016 05:39 AM

December 04, 2016

Universal Decimal Classification

CFP International UDC Seminar 2017 - Faceted Classification Today: Theory, Technology and End Users

International UDC Seminar 2017 "Faceted Classification Today: Theory, Technology and End Users" will take place in London on 14-15 September 2017. The objective of the conference is to revisit faceted analytical theory as a method for (re)constructing modern classifications and indexing languages and the role analytico-synthetic classifications have had in resource discovery and retrieval, from

by Aida Slavic ( at December 04, 2016 10:51 PM

First Thus

December 02, 2016


Registration open for the 24 January 2017 Mashcat event in Atlanta

We are excited to announce that registration is now open for the second face-to-face Mashcat event in North America, which be held on January 24th, 2017, at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia. We invite you to view the schedule for the day as well as register at We have a strict limit on the number of participants who can attend in person, so register early!

The event will also be streamed as a free webinar, so if you cannot attend in person, registration for the webinar will open in January.

If you run into any issues with registering, you can email gmcharlt AT

by Galen Charlton at December 02, 2016 07:48 PM

025.431: The Dewey blog

Swan song

Back in October, a pair of trumpeter swans showed up by the pond at OCLC headquarters in Dublin, Ohio, and they seem to have made their home there. OCLC held a company-wide survey to name the swans, eventually narrowing it down to five pairs of names to choose from. And what was the result? Presenting . . . Dewey and Deci! We here at Dewey Manor were thrilled with the choice.


According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the trumpeter swan is the largest waterfowl native to North America, and the largest extant species of swan. Wondering where to class works on these elegant creatures? In general, swans belong at 598.418 Cygninae. Since we know Dewey and Deci’s species, we can get more specific and go to 598.4184 Cygnus buccinator. And a work specifically on trumpeter swans in Dublin, Ohio, would get the Table 2 notation for the county, T2—77156 Franklin County, for a complete number of 598.41840977156.

We’re glad Dewey and Deci have decided to settle down at OCLC, but they’re still wild creatures and may move on. What if they were domesticated? The DDC has separate numbers for zoology, incorporating wild animals and their natural history, and for animal husbandry, encompassing topics such as domesticated animals, livestock, breeding, etc. Interdisciplinary works belong in the 590s, but many animals are also provided for in the 630s. Swans have their own number there at 636.681 Swans, without further classification by species.

Sharp-eyed—dare I say eagle-eyed?—readers may notice that the captions for 598.418 and 598.4184 in WebDewey have changed since the print version of DDC 23. This was part of a systemic update of 579 and 585-599, partially in conjunction with the recent changes to angiosperms at 583-584, though not as extensive a revision as that. One of the primary goals of these changes was to separate scientific (Latin) names and common names instead of having them mixed in the same note or heading. The previous heading for 598.4184, for example, was “Cygnus buccinator (Trumpeter swan).” We’ll explore those changes in greater depth in a later post.

by Alex at December 02, 2016 03:15 PM

December 01, 2016

025.431: The Dewey blog

Dewey by the Numbers

Here’s a brief snapshot of the DDC 23 EN database (the database associated with the English-language version of DDC 23) as of 1 December 2016:

Dewey by the Numbers (2016-12-01)

by Rebecca at December 01, 2016 04:58 PM

November 30, 2016

Terry's Worklog

MarcEdit Update

In what’s become a bit of a tradition, I took some of my time over the Thanksgiving holiday to work through a few things on my list and put together an update (posted last night).  Updates were to all versions of MarcEdit and cover the following topics:


* Enhancement: Dedup Records – addition of a fuzzy match option
* Enhancement: Linked Data tweaks to allow for multiple rules files
* Bug Fix: Clean Smart Characters can now be embedded in a task
* Enhancement: MARC Tools — addition of a MARC=>JSON processing function
* Enhancement: MARC Tools — addition of a JSON=>MARC processing function
* Behavior Change: SPARQL Browser updates — tweaks make it more simple at this point, but this will let me provide better support
* Dependency Updates: Updated Saxon XML Engine
* Enhancement: Command-Line Tool: MARC=>JSON; JSON=>MARC processes added to the command-line tool
* Enhancement: continued updates to the Automatic updater (due to my webhost continuing to make changes)
* removal of some deprecated dependencies

Mac OS

* Enhancement: Dedup Records – addition of a fuzzy match option
* Enhancement: Linked Data tweaks to allow for multiple rules files
* Enhancement: MARC Tools — addition of a MARC=>JSON processing function
* Enhancement: MARC Tools — addition of a JSON=>MARC processing function
* Behavior Change: SPARQL Browser updates — tweaks make it more simple at this point, but this will let me provide better support
* Dependency Updates: Updated Saxon XML Engine
* Enhancement: continued updates to the Automatic updater (due to my webhost continuing to make changes)
* Enhancement: Linked data enhancement — allow selective collection processing
* Enhancement: MarcEditor: Smart Character Cleaner added to the Edit ShortCuts menu
* removal of some deprecated dependencies

Couple notes about the removal of deprecated dependencies.  These were mostly related to a SPARQL library that I’d been using – but having some trouble with due to changes a few institutions have been making.  It mostly was a convenience set of tools for me, but they were big and bulky.  So, I’m rebuilding exactly what I need from core components and shedding the parts that I don’t require.

Couple other notes – I’ll be working this week on adding the Edit Shortcuts functionality into the Mac versions task manager (that will bring the Windows and Mac version back together).  I’ll also be working to do a little video recording on some of the new stuff just to provide some quick documentation on the changes.

You can download from the website: or assuming my webhost hasn’t broke it, the automatic downloader.  And I should not, the automatic downloader will now work differently – it will attempt to do a download, but if my host causes issues, it will automatically direct your browser to the file for download following this update.


by reeset at November 30, 2016 02:07 PM

November 29, 2016


Ranganathan on shyness: Get over it!


Advice from the father of library science

In 1931, S.R. Ranganathan, a mathematician and librarian who is widely regarded as a founder of modern library science, published his seminal work, The Five Laws of Library Science. His five principles about managing the library get most of the publicity, but tucked away on page 65 is a gem of a quote sometimes overlooked but extremely important in our fast-changing world.

“If you want to be a reference librarian, you must learn to overcome not only your shyness but also the shyness of others.”

Ranganathan used this quote to describe behavioral change librarians needed to make in his day, when they were transitioning to serving readers from preserving books. No longer were readers considered a nuisance—they became the focus of the library. Librarians had to lose their shyness and come out from behind the desk to serve users, as well as overcome any reader shyness.

As we in the library community wrestle with change management, Ranganathan’s words ring as clearly today as they did 85 years ago. You can’t be shy when tackling change. Change requires a boldness that leaves reticence behind in order to embrace something new.

Change requires a boldness that leaves reticence behind.
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Getting a formula for change

Last month, I had the honor of hosting the 12th annual OCLC Contact Day in the Netherlands. More than 300 members from across the country came together in Utrecht for one day to discuss change—what it means to us as both professionals and individuals.

Ben Tiggelaar, well-known Dutch publicist, trainer and researcher on behavioral sciences, was our keynote speaker that day. He shared his insights on the psychology of change and led us through the process of change as well as how to deal with the continuum of change in our day-to-day lives.


Appropriately, Ben used Ranganathan’s quote on shyness to introduce his five steps for adapting to change:

  • Formulate goals as ‘learning goals’ and not as ‘performance goals.’ Behavioral change starts with a succinct, easy to repeat, emotionally compelling message framed as a learning objective.
  • Define the desired behavior. Successful change requires clear steps anyone can take—simple, actionable steps without elaborate new processes.
  • Start with the ‘bright spots.’ In most cases our brain exaggerates the negative. List the advantages on a whiteboard and place reminders at the point of action to help make the jump to a new behavior.
  • Organize support and a ‘safe’ environment. Successful change requires many people working together—a community designed to partner with individuals and inspire each other.
  • Realize that you’re never finished! Changing behavior is not a one-time decision. It’s an ongoing campaign that requires enlisting your heart and mind every day.

Coming together to support one another

Ben’s presentation hit home with attendees, who had identified transparency, listening and warmth as the behaviors they would like to see more of in their libraries. Here’s what a few of them said:

  • From a public library staff member: I feel the need for change, but how can I change when I’m the only staff member in this little library and my other colleagues work at different locations?
  • From an academic librarian: I love to change, but I do not want ‘to be changed.’
  • One of our members said that implementing a new library system is often a key driver for changing workflows.
  • And a public library director asked how OCLC can help public libraries change from the traditional lending library—a perception that’s still in the minds of many users—to a community library where people get support for their personal development.


Well, that’s where our library cooperative shines. And why we come together every year at Contact Day. This annual gathering has grown into one of the biggest events for the Dutch library community because of the desire to support one another in our quest to lead the library profession forward. We are a community that shares knowledge and knows that, collectively, it’s easier to change together.

Change can be intimidating even when you know it’s needed. It means uncertainty, especially in times like today, when it seems unending and unrelenting. But with the support of colleagues and the strength of a community, this very difficult task becomes doable.

S.R. Ranganathan knew it. And our members know it as well.

Question…What is the biggest change your library has achieved? Let us know on Twitter with the hashtag #OCLCnext.

The post Ranganathan on shyness: Get over it! appeared first on OCLC Next.

by Saskia Leferink at November 29, 2016 02:42 PM

November 28, 2016

TSLL TechScans

Getting to Know TS Law Librarians: Pat Sayre-McCoy

1. Introduce yourself (name & position).
I’m Pat (Patricia) Sayre-McCoy, Head of Law Cataloging and Serials at the D’Angelo Law Library, University of Chicago.

2. Does your job title actually describe what you do? Why/why not?
Not really anymore. I am very much involved in our Law School institutional repository, Chicago Unbound—my staff adds new issues of Law School publications, such as the Law School Announcements, and the alumni magazine, the Law School Record. This requires computer skills, such as editing documents and photos, adding metadata, and creating links to individual sections of the issue. We’re going to rename ourselves in Cataloging as soon as we come up with a good name; for now my copy catalogers are Metadata Assistants.

3. What are you reading right now?
I tend to read multiple books at the same time as I either lose/temporarily misplace a book or decide I’m in the mood for something else. For work, Digital rights management edited by Catherine A. Lemmer and Carla P. Wale just arrived in my In-box. For fun, I just started Laura Anne Gilman’s fantasy novel, Silver on the Road, about a fantastical US wild west in the early 1800s.

4a.If you could work in any library (either a type of library or a specific one), what would it be? Why?
I’d love to work at the Field Museum library or any other natural history library. I have a degree in Physical Anthropology and studied human and primate evolution. I love bones! Also, working in a natural history library, I could put some of my rather obscure knowledge to use. However, one of the reasons I wanted my current position is because I love serials cataloging—it’s like a puzzle and working in a law library you really learn serials! And the people at the D’Angelo Law Library are so great to work with. It would be hard to find a better group anywhere.

4b. You suddenly have a free day at work, what project would you work on?
I have a lot of procedures to document and I’d probably get to work on them. The IR is relatively new to us and I don’t have all the procedures worked out yet. And then for a break from procedures, I could catalog some of the new faculty podcasts and videos that have been posted by the Law School. I really like to catalog them because some of our professors are great speakers with a good sense of humor. And I learn lots of new things from the podcasts.

by (Lauren Seney) at November 28, 2016 06:04 PM

Coyle's InFormation

All the Books

I just joined the Book of the Month Club. This is a throwback to my childhood, because my parents were members when I was young, and I still have some of the books they received through the club. I joined because my reading habits are narrowing, and I need someone to recommend books to me. And that brings me to "All the Books."

"All the Books" is a writing project I've had on my computer and in notes ever since Google announced that it was digitizing all the books in the world. (It did not do this.) The project was lauded in an article by Kevin Kelley in the New York Times Magazine of May 14, 2006, which he prefaced with:

"What will happen to books? Reader, take heart! Publisher, be very, very afraid. Internet search engines will set them free. A manifesto."

There are a number of things to say about All the Books. First, one would need to define "All" and "Books". (We can probably take "the" as it is.) The Google scanning projects defined this as "all the bound volumes on the shelves of certain libraries, unless they had physical problems that prevented scanning." This of course defines neither "All" nor "Books".

Next, one would need to gather the use cases for this digital corpus. Through the HathiTrust project we know that a small number of scholars are using the digital files for research into language usage over time. Others are using the the files to search for specific words or names, discovering new sources of information about possibly obscure topics. As far as I can tell, no one is using these files to read books. The Open Library, on the other hand, is lending digitized books as ebooks for reading. This brings us to the statement that was made by a Questia sales person many years ago, when there were no ebooks and screens were those flickery CRTs: "Our books are for research, not reading." Given that their audience was undergraduate students trying to finish a paper by 9:30 a.m. the next morning, this was an actual use case with actual users. But the fact that one does research in texts one does not read is, of course, not ideal from a knowledge acquisition point of view.

My biggest beef with "All the Books" is that it treats them as an undifferentiated mass, as if all the books are equal. I always come back to the fact that if you read one book every week for 60 years (which is a good pace) you will have read 3,120. Up that to two books a week and you've covered 6,240 of the estimated 200-300 million books represented in WorldCat. The problem isn't that we don't have enough books to read; the problem is finding the 3-6,000 books that will give us the knowledge we need to face life, and be a source of pleasure while we do so. "All the Books" ignores the heights of knowledge, of culture, and of art that can be found in some of the books. Like Sarah Palin's response to the question "Which newspapers form your world view?", "all of them" is inherently an anti-intellectual answer, either by someone who doesn't read any of them, or who isn't able to distinguish the differences.

"All the Books" is a complex concept. It includes religious identity; the effect of printing on book dissemination; the loss of Latin as a universal language for scholars; the rise of non-textual media. I hope to hunker down and write this piece, but meanwhile, this is a taste.

by Karen Coyle ( at November 28, 2016 08:41 AM

November 23, 2016

025.431: The Dewey blog

New and improved

Those of you working in 583–584 in the past several days may have noticed some changes. Over a year ago we announced a proposal to revise the development under 583–584 to adopt the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group’s 2009 classification for flowering plants (APG III) as the basis for the DDC’s treatment of flowering plants. A follow-up blog posting earlier this year responded to some of the comments received from reviewers of the proposed revision. This revised development has now been rolled out to WebDewey.

In Dewey speak, the 583–584 revision qualifies as an extensive revision, having been prepared with little reference to earlier editions. In the past you would have reviewed the changes for an extensive revision through comparative and equivalence tables in the next print edition. But the times they are a-changin’ (to quote this year’s Nobel Literature Prize winner), and we are now making more extensive use of history notes to keep you apprised of how the meaning of a class has changed over time / of where a topic associated with a class may have come from or gone to.

For example, our understanding of what belongs together in the order designated as Saxifragales has shifted significantly, depending on whether the circumscription of the order reflects plant morphology or molecular phylogenetics. This order was previously classed in 583.72 Saxifragales. An extensive set of relocation notes under this number (now 583.72 Geraniales) indicates where plants previously considered part of Saxifragales are now to be found. At the same time an extensive set of formerly-located-in notes in the current 583.44 Saxifragales indicates where plants considered in APG III to be part of this order were previously classed.

583.72583.44The changes seen in WebDewey for the extensive revision under 583–584 are joined by other changes approved by EPC in conjunction with a recent electronic meeting, EPC 139A. We will be posting PDFs showing these updates later this week.

Several of our training modules have been changed to reflect changes in the angiosperm revision or other changes associated with EPC Meetings 139 and 139A:

In the coming weeks you can expect to see additional posts here exploring some of the other changes from EPC Meetings 139 and 139A.

by Rebecca at November 23, 2016 08:22 PM