The Open Library: Wikipedia meets Amazon?

“Imagine a library that collected all the world’s information about all
the world’s books and made it available for everyone to view and
update. We’re building that library.”

(via MetaFilter)

Jessamyn West blogged about the site on and suggests checking the “About the Librarianship” page which says:

“For the first time, we'll have an open, public, curated, universal
catalog of all books. But this also presents an enormous challenge: we
need to develop a schema for all that book information.
Like the MARC format, we'll want our schema to contain all the
important bibliographic information that librarians want to collect
about books. But we'll also want to take advantage of all the things
we've learned since MARC.”

Comments 2

  1. Anonymous wrote:

    Isn't MARC just a standardized code for communicating information between database systems. I think that it would be more useful to look at AACR2 and ISBD, which is the data that is being carried by MARC.
    Then again, AACR3 or RDA or whatever they finally decide to call it, might already deal with half the issues Ms. West might have.
    Why reinvent the wheel, or even just the spoke, if you don't have to?

    Posted 18 Jul 2007 at 1:51 pm
  2. Anonymous wrote:

    I barely understood a word you said!
    Jason (not a cataloguer)
    Oh, to answer the question, once you get past the arguments about various formats, I think the main idea is to have a central, open repository for this information. As was pointed out in the MetaFilter thread: OpenLibrary:Bowkers :: Wikipedia:Britannica.

    Posted 19 Jul 2007 at 12:22 am
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