Visual Catalog

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Information Visualization:

Innovative Practices to Connect Every Book, Its Reader

[This is a survey about advances in content management for creating visual catalogs]
by Mohamed Taher
My Visual Resume

To comment on this subject go to: InfoVis:Wiki

Best practices:

Mining The Library Catalog: Emerging Trends,
A Literature Survey,
   by Dr. Mohamed Taher

My Blogs:
Information Visualization
Multifaith Information Gateway 

Many librarians find it easier to blame deficiencies in information-seeking behavior on the laziness of patrons than on the underlying structure of the library system itself. However, Mann proposes that since users’ propensity toward easy search strategies is not likely to change and librarians are aware of this behavior, it is the responsibility of librarians to restructure the system to ensure quality resources are more easily accessible. [Source:Saturday, August 23, 2003 Mann - "The Principle of Least Effort" Susan's Blog: LS 500 ]

"Today, a large and growing number of students and scholars routinely bypass library catalogs in favor of other discovery tools, and the catalog represents a shrinking proportion of the universe of scholarly information. The catalog is in decline, its processes and structures are unsustainable, and change needs to be swift. At the same time, books and serials are not dead, and they are not yet digital. Notwithstanding widespread expansion of digitization projects, ubiquitous e-journals, and a market that seems poised to move to e-books, the role of catalog records in discovery and retrieval of the world’s library collections seems likely to continue for at least a couple of decades and probably longer".  -[PDF File]  Changing Nature of the Catalog and its Integration with Other Discovery Tools quoted by Sukhdev Singh in his Blog:Sukhdev's World

How to Locate a Book in a Library by Fatima Mussa and others: When you go to the library to find a good fiction book, or a novel, or any type of book,it can seem confusing at first. A Librarian is always there to assist you. However, you might just want to find a book on your own by browsing the shelves or checking the catalogue file, which is usually in a computer on a table, easy to access and use. Continue reading a non-librarian's Guide COURTESY: wikiHow by eHow The How-To Manual That Anyone Can Write or Edit


Alternative Cataloging:

Innovative Approaches

Visual Catalogue:

  • What is a Visual Catalogue?
    "Current library catalogs don't reflect how people really work with information, making them very inefficient tools, particularly for users new to a discipline. They represent monolithic centralized efforts to structure access to the written record that are failing to adequately address the growth of that record or to tightly integrate newer forms of scholarly communication (e.g. the Web)."

The OPAC of the future should have the following characteristics: The catalog needs to provide its users with grounding in fields that are new to them. It should offer both visualizations of the collection and of scholarly activity using the collection. It should support subjective queries and be able to handle a natural language dialog. Over time it should develop personal profiles of its users and tailor its responses to better meet their needs. It should help them to get into contact with one another and to update the overall store of knowledge to manage errata and incomplete leads. It should be designed to be able to function as a distributed system. It should have at its highest levels, an object oriented systems architecture to promote well factored extensibility." More...'s Approach

  • is New Fulfillment Partner in the Open WorldCat Program has joined Baker & Taylor as a fulfillment partner within the Open WorldCat program to facilitate the online purchase of books identified through WorldCat. Now, Web searchers who reach WorldCat from popular search engines or other Web resources may use a book buying link to purchase books through, in addition to the initial pilot partner, Baker & Taylor.
    This component of the Open WorldCat program not only connects Web searchers with the materials they need; it also delivers a financial benefit to all libraries that participate in the program. Each time a Web searcher purchases a book through Open WorldCat, a portion of the proceeds supports the ongoing development of Open WorldCat for the benefit of all participating libraries.
    Web searchers reach the Open WorldCat interface from search results in Web search engines or popular Web resources. Users may link directly to from Find in a Library for some items. When a direct link is not available, users will have the option of linking to the site to search for similar items. More at OCLC
  • Amazon: Search Inside the Book The Great Library of Amazonia, By Gary Wolf,, Issue 11.12 | December 2003
  • Citation links @ Amazon
  • Information visualization titles at Amazon  
    I'd like to suggest one possible reason why we let Amazon beat us at our own game of constructing catalogs: we may be too realistic for our own good. ... Amazon could afford to spend millions of dollars on servers and software because they expected to make money doing it, and they got the star-up money up-front from other people who believed they would succeed. We know perfectly well that taxpayers and our administrations wouldn't fork over that kind of money, don't we? ... But who of us would go to our administrations and say, "Give me a few million dollars and I'll produce the ultimate user-friendly catalog that tells people everything they could possibly want to know about any book or video or recording in our library"? Solution: Dream Big, by Marylaine Block, in Net Effects: How Librarians Can Manage the Unintended Consequences of the Internet. Edited by Marylaine Block. (Medford NJ., Information Today, 2003): 322-323. [read online: How To Not Be Blind-sided Again @ 
  • ppt  Emulating Amazon: what lessons can we learn; what features can we implement, by Jim Robertson, 2006
How It Works

Inside This Book (learn more)
First Sentence:
Most people tend to use the words "Internet" and "Web" inter-changeably, but they're not synonyms. Read the first page Browse Sample Pages:
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover

Another innovation:

Practical Guide to Critical Thinking (Paperback)
by Michael Andolina "Critical thinking has long been recognized as an essential skill to participate wisely in a democratic society..." (more)

Explore: Citations | Books on Related Topics | Concordance | Text Stats | SIPs | CAPs
Browse: Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover | Surprise Me!

READINGS: Taxonomy, Ontology, Conceptual mapping, Clusers, Visual thesauri:

  • Annotated BibliographyVisualizing the Tree of Life, Interaction design for sharing the results of the NSF Tree of Life Initiative, Rebecca Shapley
  • Multilevel and Graphical Views of Metadata by Kate Beard, Vyjayanti Sharma
  • Searching for the Needle in the. Haystack. Taxonomies, Tags and Targets. Michael Pelikan, James Leous, Margaret Smith,. Russell Vaught and Richard Pearce ...
  • Towards an Ontology for Library Modalities, Christopher A. Welty. Vassar College Computer Science Dept.
  • Developing Practical Automatic Metadata Assignment. and Evaluation Tools for Internet Resources. Gordon W. Paynter. The INFOMINE Project
  • Development of an Intelligent Web Interface to Online Library Catalog,
  • Using Librarian Techniques in Automatic Text Summarization for Information Retrievalby Min-Yen Kan & Judith L. Klavans
  • Making a library catalog adaptive Buckland, Norgard et al.,
  • Incremental clustering for very large document databases: initial MARIAN experience, by Can, Fazli, Edward A. Fox, Cory Snavely, and Robert K. France. Information Systems 84, 1995, pp. 101-114.
  • Querying, Navigating and Visualizing an Online Library Catalog (1995)
  • HyperMaps: telling your users where to go, By Howard Jay Strauss
  • [pdf file]  Harvesting Translingual Vocabulary Mappings for Multilingual Digital Libraries, Ray R. Larson. School of Information. Management and Systems
  • Images and Visualization at the 9th ASIS SIG/CR Classification Research Workshop
  • What storytelling can do for information visualization, Nahum Gershon; Ward Page Association for Computing Machinery. Communications of the ACM; Aug 2001; 44, 8; ABI/INFORM Global pg. 31. "GershonPage2001-Viz&Storytelling.pdf"
  • Public Access Catalog: AquaBrowser Library
  • graphical OPAC
  • Online Public Access Catalog Interfaces
  • Vivísimo - Clustered search on "information visualization"
  • Type: "field of information visualization"
  • Touchgraph
  • Modern Information Retrieval (book) section on interfaces and visualization
  • Annotated Bibliography of Information Visualization for Digital Libraries
  • Information Visualization Journal
  • Visual indexing in a multimedia world, by Sarah J. Boling
  • Information visualization tools for collection development, reference & research


    P.S. This iniformation visualization, is more than just 'viewing aids' for audio-visuals or Conducting A Visual Catalog Search or OnLine Audiovisual Catalogers Web Site or for locating digital archives such as

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