Computers in Libraries
Vol. 21, No. 4 April 2001 

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Library of Congress and OCLC Cooperate on the Collaborative Digital Reference Service
The Library of Congress (LC) and OCLC have signed an agreement to develop a prototype for a new reference service based on the Collaborative Digital Reference Service (CDRS) pilot, begun last year by LC and 16 participating libraries. Now in its third phase, the pilot project has expanded to include more than 60 libraries and other institutions internationally.

According to the announcement, the 24/7 service will deliver the direct benefits of quality reference service to a broad spectrumof users. The three main benefits will be a reliable and authoritative knowledge navigation service, a large searchable archive of authoritative answers, and increased visibility for libraries everywhere. Libraries will assist their users by connecting to the CDRS to send questions that are best answered by the expert staff and collections of the participating institutions around the world.

According to the agreement, OCLC will provide technical and developmental support to the CDRS pilot by building and maintaining a database of profiles of participating institutions; building and maintaining a question-and-answer database system that will enable CDRS participants to catalog answers and store them in a searchable/browsable database; and providing administrative support for CDRS, including marketing, registration, training, and user support.

Source: Library of Congress, Washington, DC, 202/707-2905;

Surpass Offers Pricing for Small Libraries
Surpass Software has announced that it is now bundling Surpass Central with Surpass Safari and offering them at a reduced price to libraries with 5,000 or fewer volumes. This bundle will sell for $995 (regularly priced at $1,750), so a small library can now have a fully automated system with both circulation and catalog for under $1,000. The programs are only limited in the size of the collection they will handle; otherwise they are fully functional.

Surpass Central encompasses circulation, administration, cataloging, ID card creation, and report generation. Surpass Safari is the Windows-based OPAC for the system. It has a browser-like interface and features including simple and advanced searching, access to recommended reading lists with optional photos or graphics, a book-bag feature for creating and saving custom bibliographies, and more.

Source: Surpass Software, Calhoun, GA, 877/625-2657;

Securityware Locks for Notebook Computers
Securityware has introduced a new lock for preventing the theft of laptop and notebook computers. The Notebook Lock is designed to secure the notebook computer to a fixed object to prevent it from being stolen. Simply loop the cable around a desk or table and insert the lock into the security slot built into most notebook computers. A key is required to release the device but not to lock it. The lock features an extra secure aircraft type of steel-coated cable with an overall diameter of 0.24 inches and a length of 6 feet. The Notebook Lock kit contains a universal adapter that attaches to notebooks without a security slot.

The Notebook Lock is priced at $34.95 with a lifetime warranty. They can be ordered either keyed alike or keyed differently.

Source: Securityware, Inc., San Diego, 800/681-5555, 619/467-9300;

ITI Acquires Detwiler's Medical Directory
Information Today, Inc. (ITI) has announced that it has acquired Detwiler's Directory of Health and Medical Resources from The Detwiler Group. ITI will be responsible for producing all future editions of this annual directory.

Detwiler's Directory of Health and Medical Resources, which has been published since 1992 and is constantly updated online, profiles more than 2,000 government agencies, associations, research companies, publishers, and boards. The entire directory is cross-referenced by more than 1,000 subjects and services, as well as by acronyms.

Source: Information Today, Inc., Medford, NJ, 609/654-6266;
E-Journal Archives

MIT Libraries Receives Funding for Archive
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded $145,000 to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries to plan the development of an archive of dynamic journals--those newly emerging scholarly Web sites that provide a broad range of dynamic content.

An example of these is MIT Press' Cognet, which was launched in September 2000 to create a community for researchers and scholars in cognitive and brain sciences. According to the announcement, the MIT Libraries will explore and assess possible strategies and technologies, and will plan a model for a safe repository for this new form of scholarly communication.

Source: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries, Cambridge, MA, 617/253-5686;

Sun, Stanford Univ. Libraries Collaborate to Archive Materials Published on the Web
Sun Microsystems, Inc. and the Stanford University Libraries have announced that the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has provided continuation funding for an online archiving program designed to provide reliable, persistent access to academic materials published on the Internet. Begun as a collaboration between Sun and Stanford, this project may provide a solution to the problem of collecting and maintaining permanent access to electronic scholarly publications and library collections, according to the announcement.

Based on Java technology, LOCKSS (Lots of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe) is an open-source, distributed system, designed to run on inexpensive PCs without central administration. Participating library computers continually poll among themselves to monitor files on the hard disks at random intervals. If the files have been corrupted or altered, the autonomous caching system replaces them with intact copies.

The LOCKSS project was initiated in May 2000 and includes as test sites the libraries at Stanford, Harvard, Columbia, University of California­Berkeley, University of Tennessee, and the Los Alamos National Library. The new funding will allow for testing at dozens of major libraries starting this month. For more information see or

Source: Sun Microsystems, Inc., Palo Alto, CA, 650/960-1300;
Web Resources

SIRSI Launches Electronic Library Web Site
SIRSI Corp. has announced, a Web site devoted exclusively to familiarizing libraries and their users with electronic libraries.

In addition to defining and describing the e-library concept, provides links to organizations across the country that have already created their own e-libraries, answers to frequently asked questions, and a glossary of terms used in the e-library setting. Visitors to can also experience a live electronic library, which can operate with any local integrated library system.

Source: SIRSI Corp., Huntsville, AL, 256/704-7000;

N2H2 Creates Web
N2H2, Inc. has announced the launch of, a new online resource designed to provide teachers, librarians, administrators, and tech coordinators with information and resources on how to comply with the new Children's Internet Protection Act, how to receive funding, and where to go with questions.

The site is divided into five sections: About Filtering includes an overview of the topic and steps for choosing the right solution. The Compliance section is a step-by-step guide for determining requirements for schools and libraries, along with information on federal funding. The Resources area includes links to information about education technology issues, with an emphasis on e-rate funding. Funding contains links to information on school and library funding issues. Staying Informed reports on recent legislation changes.

Source: N2H2, Inc., Seattle, 800/971-2622, 206/336-1501; Debuts Its Speaker Source has announced a new free service for matching speakers to library organizations seeking programs and presentations.

Speaker Source, at, enables library groups to locate and contact authors, library technology experts, and other experienced speakers. Speakers provide a brief description of their topics, qualifications, and requirements; those seeking speakers can search for specific topics or browse the entire database. No fees are charged by to be listed in the database. Speakers set their own requirements and fees, if any.

Source:, New York, 877/401-9535;
Great Sites to Watch

Public Library Joins with Lycos for StoryPlace
StoryPlace, an animated story and activity site for children by the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County (PLCMC) in North Carolina, is being co-branded as part of LycosZone (, the Lycos search engine's children's site. According to the announcement, PLCMC is the first library to co-brand a Web site with a major Internet portal.

StoryPlace is a children's digital library where youngsters can participate in interactive activities that promote the joy of reading. In the Pre-School Library section, children can watch and listen to animated stories, complete online and "take home" activities, and locate "reading lists" related to a theme. The recently added Elementary Library section allows students to interact with "Topsy Turvy Tales" by customizing elements--such as names, places, and endings of stories, in addition to print-out activities and reading lists.

According to the director of Web services in PLCMC, the original StoryPlace site ( will remain the same, with the co-branded StoryPlace/Lycos site created to mirror the original.

Source: Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County, Charlotte, NC, 704/336-2725; Awards Sites of the Year
StartSpot Mediaworks, Inc.'s has announced that the Baltimore County Public Library ( in Towson, Maryland, has been selected as Library Site of the Year for 2000. Also, of Danville, California, has been selected as Reference Site of the Year.

According to the announcement, judges were impressed with Baltimore County Public Library's attractive yet simple design, strong local content, and breadth of coverage. Judges particularly enjoyed the site's InfoCenters and Kid's Page, as well as its extensive resources for monthly celebrations and events. reports that its judges found the content on, which provides access to more than 1,800 dictionaries in more than 250 languages, exhaustive and intriguing. Judges also noted a delightful user interface leading to practical tools and thought-provoking discoveries about words and the societies they help describe.

Source: StartSpot Mediaworks, Inc., Evanston, IL, 847/866-1830;
Upgraded Utilities

Academic Press Upgrades IDEALAlert
Academic Press has announced that it has upgraded IDEALAlert, the free news service available through IDEAL, its online library for science, technology, and medical researchers.

IDEALAlert offers e-mailed notices regarding articles published electronically through IDEALFirst. According to the announcement, the upgrade to the service shortens the time between when an article is accepted for publication and when an alert goes out about the article. Also, users can now view their personalized lists of subscriptions and instantly see reflected there any changes they have made.

Source: Academic Press, San Diego, 619/231-6616;

SilverPlatter Enhances Two Existing Utilities
SilverPlatter Information, Inc. has announced the availability of the newest version of its Web interface, WebSPIRS 4.3. The new version, according to the announcement, offers better performance, easier navigation, and fewer windows. A few of the new features are the ability to run WebSPIRS either in an independent, full-sized window or in a standard browser window, text link available at the bottom of the screen for navigating to the Full/Complete Record display, and support for other authentication services using referring pages.

In a separate announcement, SilverPlatter offers a new release of WebSTATS, the statistics module for Internet Service subscribers, with new features. For automatic monthly reports, reports now may be sent to multiple e-mail addresses; monthly statistics files may be sent as HTML and/or CSV attachments; and scheduled reports may be viewed, edited, and tested. Reporting options for usage statistics include reports by desired date range; viewing data broken out by day, month, or totaled; sorting statistics by user, date, or database name; and viewing report on screen or save as a file and import into a spreadsheet.

Source: SilverPlatter Information, Inc., Norwood, MA, 781/769-2599;

CSA Offers Service, Adds Full-Text Links to OCLC FirstSearch Database
Through a worldwide network of publishing partners, Cambridge Scientific Abstracts (CSA) has announced its new service, which allows individual researchers to acquire scientific and technical reports, all at a fraction of the cost required for researching massive amounts of scientific data, CSA reports.

Users can choose from more than 1,500 bibliographic and technical reports dynamically updated with new data from journals, books, reports, patents, conference proceedings, and the Web.'s reports cover "hot topics" in aquatic science, biological science and biotechnology, engineering, environmental science, information technology, linguistics, materials science and technology, neuroscience, and sociology. The British Library and 18 other publishing partners will market the reports through their respective Web sites. According to the announcement, subject-matter experts from the CSA editorial staff research all reports. The reports summarize the contents of up to 250 current references, including peer-reviewed literature and relevant Web resources.

CSA has also announced that users searching the company's Internet Database Service (IDS) bibliographic databases can now link from their search results to electronic full-text journals offered through the OCLC FirstSearch Electronic Collections Online database if they are mutual subscribers.

Source: Cambridge Scientific Abstracts, Bethesda, MD, 800/843-7751, 301/961-6700;

EBSCO Online Offers Two New Features
EBSCO Subscription Services has announced that article-level links to EBSCO Online are now available from PubMed.

PubMed, developed by the National Center for Biotechnology Information at the National Library of Medicine, is a search tool for accessing literature citations and linking to full-text journals at Web sites of participating publishers.

EBSCO has also announced that EBSCO Online users can now purchase articles in online journals that are viewable on EBSCO Online, even if they do not have a subscription to the journal.

The new pay-per-view feature is available to both registered users of EBSCO Online as well as to users linking from its linking partners, including proprietary and third-party databases available on EBSCO Publishing's EBSCOhost service. Users can access the pay-per-view feature from results they obtain using JOURNALSearch, ARTICLESearch, or browse features, or by following a direct link to an article from a linking partner's service. The purchased article is accessible online for 7 days and can be downloaded, saved to disk, or printed as needed.

Source: EBSCO Subscription Services, Birmingham, AL, 205/991-1276;

Convera Releases RetrievalWare 6.8 System
Convera (formerly Excalibur Technologies) has released the latest version of RetrievalWare, version 6.8.

Convera RetrievalWare is a high-performance intelligent search system that allows broad flexibility and scalability across intranets and extranets. It enables users to index and search a wide range of distributed information resources, including text files, HTML, documents, relational database tables, over 200 proprietary document formats, and groupware repositories. Advanced search capabilities include concept and keyword searching, pattern searching, and query-by-example.

New features found on RetrievalWare 6.8 include a Java Server Page Toolkit, a new user interface for intranet searchers called SmartSearch, support for HTTPS/SSL protocol, updated dictionaries, Spider support for automatic URL redirection, and expanded platform and third-party support. RetrievalWare 6.8 is now available for Windows NT Intel, NT Alpha, and all major UNIX platforms.

Source: Convera, Vienna, VA, 800/788-7758, 703/761-3700;
E-Books and Journals Launches Economics Journals
The Berkeley Electronic Press,, has announced the launch of its inaugural set of academic journals, The B.E. Journals in Theoretical Economics and The B.E. Journals in Macroeconomics. Each set consists of four quality-rated journals: Frontiers of ..., Advances in ..., Contributions to ..., and Topics in.... They are available free for a limited time at

According to the announcement, the system offers a unique alternative to traditional scholarly journals. The new economics journals provide the following features: peer-reviewed publication within 10 weeks; quality rating by prominent reviewers and editors; feedback and forums among authors and readers; easy, anytime/anywhere access to information; e-mail notification of new publications, tailored to readers' interests; links between and among related articles; easy electronic submission and revision for authors; and comprehensive tracking and publication system for editors.

Source: Berkeley Electronic Press, Berkeley, CA, 510/981-0910;

ABC-CLIO Launches E-Book Collection
ABC-CLIO has announced that it has begun to publish e-book versions of its reference sources simultaneously with the print versions.

ABC-CLIO reports that throughout this year, the company will also convert select titles from its backlist into e-book form, with more than 135 titles to be published by the end of 2001. ABC-CLIO's e-books are online-accessible, full-text versions of the print titles. Customers will have personalized home sites displaying their selection of titles. Special features include unlimited simultaneous use; around-the-clock access; a full-text, cross-title search function; usage statistics and MARC records; easy navigation; and cross-links to related entries.

Source: ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara, CA, 800/368-6868, 805/968-1911;
Enhanced Content

SilverPlatter Adds to Its Database Lineup
SilverPlatter Information, Inc. has announced enhancements to Information Science Abstracts Plus (ISAP), a worldwide library science and information science database. For ISAP, SilverPlatter combines records from Information Today, Inc. with library science records from the ERIC database and relevant abstracts from Internet and Personal Computing Abstracts. Recently, Information Today announced expanded coverage with the addition of electronic journal citations. Functionality enhancements include the ability to browse journal and author names, improved subject access with descriptor and subject heading indexes, local holdings capabilities due to the addition of ISSNs, new limit options that allow for narrowing a search, new fields to link to URLs and author e-mail addresses, and the ability to link to electronic journals using SilverPlatter's SilverLinker technology.

In a separate announcement, SilverPlatter announced plans to add the RILM Abstracts of Music Literature database to its humanities collection. According to the company, RILM Abstracts of Music Literature is the premier international bibliographic database of music scholarship, covering all areas of music and interdisciplinary studies of music and various other fields. It includes abstracts for the majority of citations, as well as records for current citations before they are abstracted or indexed. The database covers writings in over 100 languages; titles are given in both the original languages and English translations.

SilverPlatter also announced plans to release ATLAS Full Text Plus, the 1949-to-present version of ATLA Religion Database with the addition of links from bibliographic records to the full text of cited articles. American Theological Library Association (ATLA), the publisher of the ATLA Religion Database, has already digitized 50 years of the 30 top journals in religion. Shortly it will have articles available from a total of more than 50 religion periodicals. Article images look exactly as they appear in print, and include all graphics and pictures from the print versions.

Source: SilverPlatter Information, Inc., Norwood, MA, 800/343-0064, 781/769-2599;

TLC/CARL Add Cahners Reviews to Portal
TLC and CARL have announced that through a partnership with Cahners, they have added a new "review" feature to the YouSeeMore personal Web portal product.

When patrons conduct a search via TLC's or CARL's OPACs and view the results, an icon indicates those selections for which a review is available. Users simply point, click, and read.

With 250,000 reviews currently available from Publisher's Weekly, Library Journal, and School Library Journal, patrons will have access to fiction, nonfiction, and materials for adults, children, and young adults. The reviews are available to YouSeeMore customers as an optional supplement.

Source: The Library Corporation, Inwood, WV, 800/325-7759;

Wilson Releases Biography Reference Bank
H.W. Wilson has announced the release of Biography Reference Bank, now the largest biographical database that the company offers. Published exclusively on WilsonWeb, it covers 195,000 figures from antiquity through today.

Biography Reference Bank features comprehensive profiles produced by Wilson, full-text articles and article abstracts from a range of periodicals, book review excerpts from Wilson's Book Review Digest, images of many biographical subjects, links to information on Web sites, and select profiles from other publishers' biographical sources.

Source: H.W. Wilson, Bronx, NY, 800/367-6770, 718/588-8400;

SoftLine Information Releases Alt-PressWatch
SoftLine Information has announced the introduction of Alt-PressWatch, a new full-text database comprising the newspapers, journals, and magazines of the alternative and independent press.

The database will contain current and ongoing coverage plus archival material from the last 5 years. Additional retrospective data will continue to be added over time.

A sampling of the titles covered includes Athens News, Arkansas Times, Colorado Springs Independent, Metroland New York, The Advocate, Ragged Edge, and Native Americas.

Source: SoftLine Information, Stamford, CT, 800/524-7922, 203/975-8292;

Enhanced PAIS Database on OCLC FirstSearch
OCLC has announced that it has enhanced the PAIS International public policy database.

The database includes new indexing and record displays, which make searching the database faster and more flexible. Users may now link to full text from other databases and electronic journals within FirstSearch. In addition, PAIS International on FirstSearch allows users easy access to library holdings information and allows them to limit searches to items held by their own library or to specific library collections. The link from FirstSearch to the OCLC Interlibrary Loan service lets users submit loan requests for materials they need. The database also integrates selected Web sites, as well as directory information for the journals, publishers, and distributors it covers.

Source: OCLC, Dublin, OH, 614/764-6000;

EBSCO Adds to Its EBSCOhost Collection
EBSCO Publishing has released the Psychology & Behavioral Sciences Collection, which is designed for 4-year universities and colleges, junior and community colleges, and biomedical libraries. It is updated weekly via EBSCOhost.

According to the announcement, the collection is a comprehensive database with full text of more than 400 journals. With EBSCO SmartLinks, users can link from search results in citation-only databases to the corresponding full text in other EBSCO databases or e-journals via EBSCO Online. It can be searched independently, or users can link to full text from citations within the PsycINFO and e-psyche databases. Psychology & Behavioral Sciences Collection also features 350 peer-reviewed journals and Adobe PDF images.

EBSCO has also released the Sociological Collection, which offers the same features as the Psychology & Behavioral Sciences Collection. Users may search it independently, or they may link to full text from citations within the Sociological Abstracts database with EBSCO SmartLinks. The Sociological Collection features more than 400 peer-reviewed journals and PDF images.

Source: EBSCO Publishing, Ipswich, MA, 800/653-2726, 978/356-6500;
Digital Collections

Oxford, Johns Hopkins Universities Team Up to Develop Digital Library Initiatives
The Sheridan Libraries of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and Oxford University Library Services in the U.K. have formed an alliance to develop digital library initiatives. Collaborative efforts will include activities ranging from staff visits and exchanges to joint digitization and publishing projects and combined development of instructional technology initiatives.

According to the announcement, this alliance grew out of a highly successful earlier collaborative effort associated with the Johns Hopkins Medieval Manuscripts Project. The first phase digitized manuscripts of Le Roman de la Rose, a principal medieval text, from three libraries: the Bodleian Library at Oxford, the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York, and the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore. Now in its second phase, the Medieval Manuscripts Project will create new possibilities for digital library scholarly research and services through the creation of digital surrogates.

Source: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, 410/516-4930;

Photos Added to 'Meeting of Frontiers' Site
The Library of Congress (LC) has announced that maps and photographs from the Elmer E. Rasmuson Library at the University of Alaska­Fairbanks, the National Library of Russia in St. Petersburg, and the Russian State Library in Moscow are now available online at the Meeting of Frontiers Web site (

Meeting of Frontiers is a congressionally funded project to create a bilingual, English/Russian digital library that chronicles the experiences of the U.S. and Russia in exploring, developing, and settling their frontiers and the meeting of those frontiers in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. The items on the site--rare books, maps, manuscripts, photographs, films, and sound recordings--tell the story of the explorers, fur traders, missionaries, exiles, gold miners, and adventurers who peopled these frontiers and their interactions with the native peoples of Siberia and the American West.

The Library of Congress is lending high-resolution digitizing equipment to libraries in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and several Siberian cities to use in scanning unique and rare materials relating to the frontiers theme. LC is also working with the University of Alaska­Fairbanks to acquire digital copies of rare materials relating to Alaska.

Source: Library of Congress, Washington, DC, 202/707-2905;

Cornell's Mann Library Offers Digital Collection of Rare Agricultural Texts
Cornell University's Albert R. Mann Library has announced its Web site devoted to rare, historically significant books on agriculture. All books can be read in full online.

The library's Core Historical Literature of Agriculture (CHLA; site is an electronic collection of the most important agricultural texts published between the early 19th century and the mid-20th century. The collection includes 825 full-text monographs with over 300,000 scanned pages, covering topics from agricultural economics and engineering to food and soil science.

Eventually, CHLA will have the full text of more than 2,000 monographs and 150 journal titles. While there are currently no journal titles available, scanning has already begun on titles such as Agricultural History, Journal of Farm Economics, and Annals of the Entomological Society of America. These should be available later this year.

Source: Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, 607/255-4206;

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