Re: Cataloging Computer Select (CD-ROM) Kevin M. Randall 11 Dec 1993 16:35 UTC

On Fri, 10 Dec 1993 14:47:56 EDT Pat Frade said:
>I have a question concerning a new dimension of serials cataloging.
>We recently received the cd-rom title "Computer Select".  This cd has
>approximately 69 full-text journals and 100 publications which are
>abstracts.  Since this appears to be the beginning of a trend, we
>would like to establish a standard to follow.  Could anyone suggest
>the best way to catalog this?  We have the DCLC bibliographic record
>for "Computer Select", but some of the librarians here would like to
>see individual title access.
>We have thought of two possible ways.  One way would be to
>catalog (separate records) all 169 titles.  Another way would be to
>catalog "Computer Select" and add a 246 for each title.  A possible
>problem that could develop is each monthly update could have slightly
>different titles on the cd.  And then there is the problem of
>holdings--we have some of these same titles in print form.

Well, I'm all for being liberal with access points, but *169* added entries???
>From what I can tell, this publication is definitely a moving target in regard
to determining what's actually in it.  When I last worked on our record for
it, the product contained "at least 30 periodicals" (a quote from one note in
our record).  In my mind, cataloging each title is totally out the question,
and providing added entries is even going too far--each new disc will have
to be examined to check the titles included, and records updated because
titles were added or dropped (not to mention title changes...)

There may also be a problem with record storage if you try to put in 169
added entries.  We have been turning a lot of the SPIE proceedings volumes
into serials, and were adding 762s for all of them in the parent record.
Well, one day we tried to put in a few more and the NOTIS system threw its
hands up in the air and cried "I'm not going to take it any more!"  And I
don't think we were anywhere near 169 of those fields.  (We ended up stripping
all of them out.  After a certain point, they sort of lost all meaning...)

I personally don't like the traditional "rule of three", especially when
updating records on computers is so easy.  I think the cutoff point might
best be decided on a case-by-case basis, but my gut feeling is that it really
is somewhat lower than 169.  (Even the 69 full-text titles would be a bit
much.)  Maybe it's best to hope that the subject entries (in this case we use
"Computers--Periodicals--Indexes", "Computers--Abstracts--Periodicals", and
"Computers--Periodicals") and Reference staff can help the users find what
they need.

Kevin M. Randall
Head, Serials Cataloging Section
Northwestern University Library