Watch my margin!! It wasn't a large response, but it was definite. You who care want a ragged right margin. Well, you've got it, but please don't try to take away my hyphens!
In "Hamaker's Haymakers," Chuck asks for volunteers to monitor the NFAIS Newsletter for us and to report on relevant articles. Chuck covers an amazing amount of the professional literature himself, and you readers are great about telling us about articles you see, but we do need regular, continuing review of some publications. Will somebody help us out here?
Of course, you know that citations with annotations are always welcome, as are relevant bibliographic essays.
Here's another request for your feedback. The group sponsoring this newsletter has not met at the last two ALAs. We feel that all of our business is transacted easily by e-mail. What we have lost is an opportunity for you, our readers, to meet with us face-to-face and tell us what you need in the Newsletter and what you like and dislike about it. We do hear from one or more of you nearly every day, and that may be all you need (now that we have no paper edition). If so, we certainly don't want to add to the number of ALA meetings! But if you would like us to meet with you, we will be happy to do it, beginning at Midwinter. Please let me know.
24.2 AAAS/OCLC ELECTRONIC SCIENCE JOURNAL
Donald J. Muccino, Vice President Research and Development, OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc., 6565 Frantz Road, Dublin OH 43017-0702; telephone: (614) 764-6000; FAX: (614) 764-6096.
On February 17, in New Orleans, the Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and OCLC Online Computer Library Center announced a joint effort to create an electronic science journal.
This venture in electronic publishing is a true strategic alliance that is consistent with the charters of the two organizations and combines a set of strengths that are unique in both the publishing and online information communities.
AAAS is a membership organization dedicated to the advancement of science in the United States. Its membership is well over 130,000. AAAS publishes Science magazine weekly and distributes over 150,000 copies of this respected journal. Science is highly regarded in the scientific community and employs a rigorous review of prospective articles submitted for publication in the journal.
OCLC, located in Dublin, Ohio, is the largest online library utility in the world. It has a database that identifies 21 million unique bibliographic items and over 350 million locations in OCLC's 10,000 member libraries. Access to this rich cataloging and reference resource is supported by a large computer operation that includes significant applications, telecommunications, and database components. OCLC provides online and offline access to the information in its database through its cataloging and resource sharing services and EPIC, the service which provides subject access and keyword and boolean searching to a variety of databases. The information is distributed through OCLC's network which supports over 10,000 dedicated and 2,000 dial access terminals and PC's. This positions OCLC well for providing the access and delivery of the electronic journal.
The journal, which has no name at this point, is in the definition stages for both subject matter and initial product form. AAAS will provide the subject and editorial expertise and OCLC will provide the storage, retrieval, access, and delivery capabilities. The journal will consist of several subjournals, each of which will have its own body of articles. Each subjournal will have an editor, an editorial board, and a carefully selected set of reviewers. An author will submit a journal article by using electronic mail or a file transfer facility.
An article submitted by an author will be reviewed using the same philosophy and operational procedures currently used for Science, except that all communications will be handled electronically. An article will be submitted using a word processing format and may initially include some minimal level of graphics.
The accepted article will be transmitted to OCLC which will then be responsible for the "publishing" process. OCLC will make the article available through its EPIC service and provide access to a broad range of terminals and workstations. Low-end ascII terminals will be able to search and retrieve the full text of the article but will be limited to the characteristics of the device. Higher-functioning workstations will be able to display a document in good quality display format which will include text and minimal-level graphics.
The user of either a terminal or workstation will have the ability to request a printed or fax copy of an article. The user of a workstation will also have the option of requesting a downloaded file. The article may also have attached data files which have been used to support the conclusions of the article. These data will be available to the user by requesting that they be downloaded or sent offline.
24.3 REPORT ON THE "INSTITUTE ON COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT
FOR THE ELECTRONIC LIBRARY"
Arlene Moore Sievers, Head, Information Acquisition Department, Case Western Reserve University Libraries, 11161 East Boulevard, Cleveland OH 44106; DATALINX: SIEVERS.
This institute was organized by the Albert R. Mann Library of Cornell University and sponsored by the Faxon Institute and six corporate sponsors. It was held at the Statler Hotel on the campus of Cornell University, Ithaca NY, April 29 - May 2, 1990.
The institute was the second of three programs on this subject sponsored by Mann Library, the first being an ALA preconference at New Orleans in 1988, the third to be a half-day program at the upcoming Chicago ALA. The program of the institute consisted of morning plenary sessions devoted to defining the electronic library and approaching the collection development aspect from many angles, and afternoon workshops which offered for the most part practical problem-solving sessions on subjects such as financing access to electronic information while building print collections. The institute was limited to a registration of ninety and drew a nationwide attendance.
One of the highlights of the institute was the keynote address of Jan Kennedy Olsen, director of the Mann Library, in which she clearly and perceptively defined the central task of planning libraries which are becoming electronic. In her analysis, the profession of librarianship is in need of a new paradigm, that is, a set of theories, practices and standards to fit the revolutionary changes brought about by the advent of the computer and advanced telecommunications in the library. The field must be reestablished from fundamentals, the chief one being the task of the profession to connect members of society to the recorded knowledge of society.
The exciting challenge of the keynote address was complemented by presentations by a number of outstanding invited speakers, the majority of whom were outside of librarianship per se, but who addressed national concerns and priorities in the area of electronic information, such as national networks, intellectual property rights, the preservation of electronic information, and ongoing research projects related to the subject of collections in electronic libraries. Afternoon sessions were devoted to workshop topics and discussions which were often conducted as practical case study analyses, where problems were raised and small groups came up with solutions to them.
The central library problems of reallocating resources to finance and maintain electronic information collections, providing equitable and cheap access to information in electronic formats to all, and restructuring library organization and goals to incorporate the electronic library idea, emerged as important themes. On a national and societal level, the proposed National Research and Education Network (NREN), submitted as legislation to the Senate by Senator Albert Gore, Jr., was a major topic addressed by many speakers. Fred Weingarten, of the Office of Technological Assessment in Washington DC, focused on the political dimension of the project and advised the mostly library/university oriented audience on how NREN may become stalled or sidetracked because of political and bureaucratic objections, despite its necessity for the education and research community. Active library involvement in guiding this program is essential if it is to serve the electronic library.
Brian Kahin was another outstanding speaker, a lawyer from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University who specializes in law as it concerns patents and copyright in conjunction with electronic information and media. He raised important concerns regarding the inadequacy of current copyright law to protect electronic information, and the difficult legal questions regarding copyright and "right to perform" that come up when libraries lease information rather than purchase it. The problem of maintaining textual integrity of material in electronic format was raised by Kahin and other participants. The issues concern maintaining the intellectual property rights over the material, and ensuring its archival future as well as ensuring its immutability.
Pricing for purchase of or access to electronic information was the subject of one plenary session, and there was much discussion of methods of pricing between conference sponsors (the only commercial representatives at the institute) and library participants. What is clear above all else is that pricing is still in flux with electronic information vendors, who have yet to decide on uniform pricing policies for their information products. The candor of the commercial representatives was instructive, since it was apparent they do not yet know precisely how to price CD-ROM use in networks, fairly or for optimal profitability, for example. This is clear to all who purchase such products and must contend with the plethora of pricing and billing methods such as yearly contractual leases, pricing per measured use, by terminal, or on a sliding scale by size of institution.
The topic of serials was remarkably absent from the institute's main emphases, except in a general context of turning away from the building of such collections. The scholar's workstation linked to information sources, through network geteways, with smooth seamless interfaces is intended to replace the need to enter the library, for the scholar at least. The implicit idea is perhaps that core collections with some few specialities, need to be maintained in hard copy for use by "unlinked" students, pre-computer age faculty, and other hapless walk-ins. To be fair, no one expects this to happen overnight. The topic of resource reallocation within the library, university and society at large was frequently addressed, but no ready solutions to the problem of "where's the cash" were forthcoming. A reasonable hypothesis for this dilemma would seem to be that gradually a larger proportion of the materials and operating budgets of the library will be committed to electronic information sources for the electronic library.
The most exciting presentation topic of the entire institute, without a doubt, was that by Dennis Egan, a cognitive psychologist and head of a project research team at Bellcore, Bell Communications Research Lab. He was introduced by Jan Kennedy Olsen, who intended his report on Superbook, an electronic book, to serve as a case study, an illustration of her concept of the electronic library. Superbook, an experimental hypertext document browsing tool, was developed as a project to aid telephone service people in accessing large technical manuals, frequently updated, in electronic format, and to assist them in quickly, accurately, and completely finding relevant information in a large text. Mann Library is an experimental site for Superbook applied to library, specifically serial, information. Along with its impressive indexing and sequencing functions, Superbook's uniqueness comes from the fact that there has been and continues to be extensive psychological testing of readers in conjunction with the development of the project.
This Bellcore research group has conducted numerous studies on how people find information in texts, what they don't find and why, and how to use this information to construct an electronic book that is better to use than a real book. Basically, material that is in machine-readable form is submitted to rich indexing, that is, full-text indexing. This is their attempt to solve the basic problem of finding information through an index or table of contents. The problem is one of verbal disagreement, that is, few people will refer to the same thing in the same way. Bellcore's group has found that the agreement rate, people choosing the same term for something, is only about 10 percent. In Superbook, every word in a paragraph refers back to that paragraph. Synonyms are also created.
When a text is submitted to Superbook, a table of contents adjacent to the page displayed is created which helps maintain what they call the "fish-eye view." The "fish-eye view" is the perspective that allows you to see something in rich detail without losing its context. You don't lose the forest for the trees. This treats one of the central problems of the computerized book, which is that people lose their sense of where they are in it. When you are reading a page of text in Superbook and find a key concept, you can create a dynamic table of contents which tells you where that concept is throughout the work. You can see what chapters or parts have lots of information and where you are in the text in relation to it. You can also see how much of that work is concerned with your subject. The page you are viewing is highlighted with the term or idea you are seeking.
Tests run by the Bellcore group testing students using Superbook treatment of text material against those using a book have shown consistently better results on tests and in essays by those using Superbook treated texts. It seems to aid learning. So far the only works running on Superbook are the telephone company manuals for which it was developed and issues of the Journal of the American Chemical Society, which is the experimental database at Albert R. Mann Library.
The summing-up session of the institute was conducted by Dr. Robert Hayes of UCLA, who did an excellent job of evaluating what had been said throughout and identifying key themes and important ideas. As a whole the institute was remarkable for its sharp focus on the topic at hand, colleciton development within the electronic library, and for its placement of the subject within the university, scientific research community, the political world and society. Just like the "fish-eye view" it was rich in detail, but firmly in context.
24.4 UPDATE ON JOURNAL OF VEGETATION
Eddy van der Maarel, Editor, Department of Ecological Botany, Uppsala University, Box 559, 751 22 UPPSALA, Sweden; BITNET: EDDY@PAX.UU.SE.
In number 13 of the Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues, you kindly included a contribution by Robert K. Peet, one of the three editors of the newly-established Journal of Vegetation Science, started as an international journal in our field which would be available for all members of the community of plant ecologists and vegetation scientists. The journal's first issue appeared in February 1990. The journal is flourishing indeed. Issue 2 has appeared as well and is on its way to libraries. The publishers are reluctant to reveal the number of library subscriptions, but the number of individual members of the society behind the journal, the International Association for Vegetation Science, subscribing to JVS can be mentioned: nearly 450. Incidentally, the old commercially-published journal has got a new editorial board, apparently less concerned about circulation, and the journal appears to be willing to start a strong competition by announcing a scope which shows a 90 percent overlap with that of JVS. Many of our supporters promised to see that Vegetatio would be replaced by JVS. Although we need still many more libraries it is already clear that JVS will make it. The publishers, OPULUS Press Uppsala, are a young, low-budget firm using desk-top publishing. So far we are extremely pleased with the efficient and fast (and cheap) way this firm is working for us. Thank you for your attention.
24.5 HAMAKER'S HAYMAKERS
Chuck Hamaker, Louisiana State University; BITNET: NOTCAH@LSUVM.
"EJournals," by Leslie Burkholder, a research scientist and editor of Computers & Philosophy, discusses electronic journals. The first example cited in the footnotes is none other than our own Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues (firstname.lastname@example.org). That form of citation seems to be common, title plus e-mail address and network. For the full text of her article see Notices of the American Mathematical Society, vol. 37, no. 5 (May/June 1990), p. 565-68.
Also included in that issue, pages 572-73, is a financial report from the AMS treasurer. Sales of books and journals make up 71 percent of total revenue. And they account for 67 percent of expenses. In the past, he notes, journals have operated at a loss. Since 1985, however, they have been in the black and provided a significant portion of the society's surplus (read: profit??). The Journal of the American Mathematical Society operated at about a breakeven point in its SECOND year of operation, "a remarkable achievement." Pressure from subscribers to "keep prices low," increases in postage (+20 percent), and royalties paid on translation journals (up 25 percent) will mean increases in costs and diminishing "surplus" from subscriptions.
The Society for Scholarly Publishing's Ninth Annual Top Management Roundtable topic is "What We Worry About At Night: Scholars, Librarians, Publishers Discuss Concerns for the 1990s." The meeting will be held in Alexandria, Virginia, September 12-14, 1990. Co-chairs are Paula Kaufman, Dean of Libraries, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and Herbert C. Morton, former director, Office of Scholarly Communication, ACLS. Registration is $395 for members and $455 for non-members. To register, call (202) 328-3555, or write SSP Meeting Registration, P.O. Box 53421, Washington DC 20009. Speakers will include Alice R. Rivlin, senior fellow, Brookings Institution, former director, Congressional Budget Office; William Arms, Vice President for Academic Services, Carnegie Mellon University; Russell Edgerton, President, American Association for Higher Education; and Philip H. Abelson, former president, Carnegie Institution and former editor, Science. Should be very interesting. I'd like to be a fly on the wall.
Someone needs to start monitoring the NFAIS Newsletter for us, as the June 1990 issue contains a whole world of important information. Because of its membership, the association is vitally interested in electronic communications. It noted D. Allan Bromley's warning at the seventh annual Forum on Federal Information Policies, sponsored by FLICC at the Library of Congress, that an "electronic Tower of Babel" is emerging from the proliferation of databases using widely varying standards. Bromley noted that databases in the earth sciences alone contain over ten times as much data as in the entire Library of Congress, yet such figures are a mere trickle compared to such future expectations as the 5,300 terabytes of scientific and technical information to be sent back from a NASA space-based system planned for 1998. For a complete summary of the meeting contact Chris Zirps, Library of Congress, Adams Building, Room 1026C, Washington DC 20540; (202) 707-6055.
The Association of Research Libraries, CAUSE, and EDUCOM have combined forces to form the Coalition for Networked Information to "promote the provision of information resources on existing networks and proposed interconnected networks" such as the NREN. The Library of Congress, National Library of Canada, OCLC, RLG, and more than 50 other universities, library systems, and organizations have joined the task force of the coalition. Says NFAIS, "It will deal with policy issues raised by a national electronic information infrastructure as well as technical, operational, and economic issues. Other issues to be addressed include intellectual property rights, standards, licensing, and cost-recovery fees."
OCLC has an agreement with TELEBASE Systems, Inc., to cover most of Telebase's activities in the future in the library market. Their services will be marketed and distributed to users of OCLC's EPIC System.
Another article in the newsletter, "Avenues of Opportunity in Developing Countries," by Ruth A. Pagell, Associate Director, Lippincott Library, discusses online and computerized information in developing countries and includes guidelines for marketing CD-ROMs in third world countries. One of the recommendations is to offer free workstations to go along with discs. She notes, "Libraries without funds for journal subscriptions are buying CD-ROMs (in Newly Industrialized Countries: NIC's)." Rugh M. Mara of AID, in an article, "A Place for CD-ROM in West Africa," notes that to date CDs appear to be more robust than either paper or magnetic media in the hot, dusty climate of West Africa, and they can be used in areas with poor or no phone service. Even the equipment seems to need less servicing and fewer spare parts than micrographic equipment!"
This issue is a must read for both publishers and librarians. And I suspect we will have to monitor it regularly. Any volunteers??? It also notes that Congress's Office of Technology Assessment has contracted with EDUCOM for a report on the impact of the information technology revolution on intellectual property rights. The working title of that report, which could have a significant effect on our mutual futures, is "A Bill of Rights for Electronic Citizens." A project team consisting of EDUCOM Vice President Steven W. Gilbert, Frank Connolly, Director of Academic Computing at the American University, and Peter Lyman, Director of the Center for Scholarly Technology at the University of Southern California, are working on identifying "key stakeholders in the delivery of intellectual property rights on the development and use of the network." Contact EDUCOM, (202) 872-4200, for more information. Where's the librarian in this group??
The annual NASIG (North American Serials Interest Group) conference held recently at Brock University, St. Catherines, Ontario, included some exceptional papers of real importance to serials and collection development librarians. Three struck this attendee as remarkable. First, the keynote speaker, Lucretia McClure, Director, Edward G. Miner Library, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester, and President Elect of the Medical Library Association. Her speech indicated an intimate awareness of the crisis facing libraries in the supply of STM journals. She noted, with approval, that "we have become aggressive seekers for the answers and there are a number of avenues worth exploring." The text of her talk is a good summary of actions and understandings that have rapidly changed the way librarians look at the serials system.
Kenneth Marks, formerly University Librarian for the Merrill Library at Utah State University (Logan UT) and now at East Carolina University, and Steve Nielsen, Fiscal Office, Merrill Library, Utah State, presented findings from a benchmark study of 20 years of pricing, pagination, price per page, geographic origin, and a variety of variables that looked at 370 journals. Two distinctive "foreign" origin groups of titles were identified, behaving very differently. In addition, when the publishers identified in the Dougherty LJ article were tested, their price per page increases, after standardizing for dollar devaluation and looked at in constant dollars, were over one standard deviation above the rest of the sample. Empirical confirmation, if it was still needed, that the ARL report was not far from the mark. The report and study were important because Marks and Nielsen were neophytes to serials pricing studies and learned the hard way all of the problems involved in longitudinal studies.
Readers of the Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues are encouraged to share the information in the newsletter by electronic or paper methods. We would appreciate credit if you quote from the newsletter.
The Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues (ISSN: 1046-3410) is published as news is available by the American Library Association's Association for Library Collections and Technical Services, Publisher/Vendor-Library Relations Committee's Subcommittee on Serials Pricing Issues. Editor: Marcia Tuttle, BITNET: TUTTLE@UNC.BITNET; Faxon's DataLinx: TUTTLE; ALANET: ALA0348; Paper mail: Serials Department, C.B. #3938 Davis Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill NC 27599-3938; telephone: (919) 962-1067; FAX: (919) 962-0484. Committee members are: Deana Astle (Clemson University), Mary Elizabeth Clack (Harvard University), Jerry Curtis (Consultant), Charles Hamaker (Louisiana State University), Robert Houbeck (University of Michigan), and Marcia Tuttle. EBSCONET customers may receive the newsletter in paper format from EBSCO. Back issues of the newsletter are available electronically free of charge through BITNET from the editor.