"The Message is the Medium"

One of the major objectives established for the OCLC Internet Cataloging Project was the identification, selection, and cataloging of Internet-accessible resources through a coordinated, cooperative nationwide effort between OCLC, college and university libraries, and other repositories of electronic information. Libraries participating in this project were encouraged to identify significant collections of electronic materials as candidates for cataloging and to contribute cataloging records for items "held" locally. While OCLC project staff assisted with the identification of 'objects for cataloging', they explicitly did not participate in the selection process, an activity viewed as a 'natural library function already practiced'.
Although the InterCat database does include significant monographic and serial works, files, databases and search services, discrete resources and entire web sites have not been differentiated. While many of the resources are of 'local' significance, many, represented by the title profiled below (Fig. S-1), are well-known, easily-retrieved by most existing Internet search engines or already extensively incorporated within established Internet guides, collections or services. More importantly, limited effort appears to have been made to identify and characterize individual significant resources within cataloged or uncataloged Web sites. In general, the value-added service that libraries have provided for generations by careful selection and description has not been fully applied to the identification and selection of Net resources in this phase of the project.

000 cmm  Ia  
001 32671041  
003 OCoLC 
005 19000000003138.0 
008 950619m19939999enkn       d        eng d 
040    UOK $c UOK  
050  4 QA76.15 $b .H6 1994  
082 04 004/.03 $2 20  
100 1  Howe, Dennis. 
245 14 The free on-line dictionary of computing 
	$h [computer file] /  $c Dennis Howe.  
246 3  FOLDOC 
256    Computer data. 
260    [England? : $b s.n.,]  $c c1993-  
538    System requirements: PC with modem. 
538    Mode of access: Internet World Wide Web. 
500    Title from title screen. 
500    "This dictionary started in 1985 and now contains 8611 
       definitions totalling 3.0 megabytes"--Modified ... 
       May 18 ... 1995. 
500    Includes searchable online index. 
520    "FOLDOC is a searchable dictionary of acronyms, jargon, 
       programming languages, tools, architecture, operating 
       systems, networking, theory, conventions, standards, 
       mathematics, telecomms, electronics, institutions, 
       companies, projects, products, history, in fact anything 
       to do with computing ... entries are cross-referenced to 
       each other and to related resources elsewhere on the net ..." 
650  0 Computers $x Dictionaries.  
650  0 Microcomputers $x Dictionaries.  
856 7  $2 http$u     
Fig. S-1

The application of the established OCLC model of cooperative cataloging to the identification and selection of Internet resources in the first phase of this project was appropriate and indeed predictable. In subsequent phases, project leaders and participants should take a more focused strategy exemplified by CyberStacks(sm) and by the NISS Information Gateway, which have adopted a subject approach to the selection of resources and which intentionally seek to include more elusive Internet resources, as well as more common sources, within their respective collections. OCLC and project participants may consider the establishment of consortia analogous to HealthWeb, dividing Internet selection and cataloging responsibilities based on overall local collection strengths for non-Internet resources. As an intermediate stage, libraries might focus on selecting Net resources that augment their individual specific local print collections.