Unlike NetFirst(tm) and the InterCat database, CyberStacks(sm) intentionally seeks to identify and describe primarily discrete resources, be they unique or part of a larger collection, in addition to well-organized Web sites. Its selection of resources reflects a collection development philosophy well-articulated by Demas, McDonald and Lawrence in a recent article:"... [T]itle by title selection of high quality resources is one of the most important values librarians can add in providing access to information resources, including those accessible via the Internet. A careful selection of resources is the touchstone of the electronic library"(Demas, McDonald and Lawrence, 1995:280).
Demas, Samuel G., Peter McDonald, and Gregory Lawrence, "The Internet and Collection Development: Mainstreaming Selection of Internet Resources," Library Resources and Technical Services 39, no. 3 (July 1995): 275-290.
While the CyberStacks(sm) model may be applied to any and all subjects, publication types and media, its initial phase has intentionally focused only on those Internet resources of a scholarly or research nature, in specific and related fields of Science and Technology within defined subject classes in the Library of Congress classification system, that have conventional Reference value.
The NISS Information Gateway, an outstanding example of a cooperative Internet cataloging project in Great Britain, can well serve as a model for potential enhancements to the OCLC Internet Cataloging Project. In the next phase of its implementation, OCLC may consider the use made by NISS of Subject Area Leaders and Subject group participants, a collection development and cataloging approach also planned by CyberStacks(sm) through its various Virtual Advisory Boards.
Serious consideration should also be given to the use of a WWW-based Resource Description Template for input of cataloging and classification data for selected resources as used by NISS and CyberStacks(sm). It is an excellent model for expediting the identification and incorporation of significant resources within a collection. Such Web-based forms are an ideal and appropriate Web tool for cataloging Web objects.
The InterCat database should seek to make wider use of a nomination form, as used generally within NetFirst(tm), to facilitate the development of a database that better meets the needs and expectations of current and potential users. It should also consider a participatory database development effort similiar to that employed within CyberStacks(sm). Through a Suggestion Form, CyberStacks(sm) users are not only provided with an opportunity to suggest the inclusion of a specific Web resource, but also have an opportunity to nominate candidate publications for future Net access that currently are not available in an Internet format.