The thesaurus of the National Széchényi Library and the KÖZTAURUSZ


The idea of a comprehensive thesaurus occurred already in the 1980s. It came into being at the end of 2000 thanks to the coincidence of several factors: during the past decades more than fifty thesauri have been constructed in Hungary, and some of these are available electronically as well. A user-friendly programme for the construction of thesauri is also available, and some public libraries have helped in the organisation of the gathered word-stock. The study offers a detailed description of the history of the construction, the structure of the thesaurus, and examples illustrate the export of the HUNMARC data exchange format that can be performed by means of the thesaurus management system. The thesaurus is used by several public libraries, the National Széchényi Library, and other institutions will also be able to utilise it to greater or smaller extent.

An integrated model of abstracting


Having surveyed some graphic models of abstracting, a new model is developed by the author. This integrated model comprises of several elements of earlier models, but first of all it relies on Endres-Niggemeyer’s model that considers abstracting as descriptive writing. The new model consists of a number of partial models. Processes are presented from a bird’s eye view, relatively schematically by the macromodel. It includes the processing (creation) of the content, the transformation, the control as the phases of abstracting, as well as the abstracting person, the primary document, and the text of the abstract produced so far. In this model cognitive activities of the abstractor occur as part of monitoring. The linguistic and non-linguistic knowledge and skills of the abstractor are presented in the first micromodel. The micromodel, describing the phases of the creation of content, contains planning, reading, comprehension of the text, application of rules required for understanding the text, and the highlighting of significant parts by underlining. The next micromodel shows transformation in which the phases of writing an outline, construction and final formulation are included. The author presents the intellectual toolbox strategy compiled by Endres-Niggermeyer. These are very useful, however, they cannot be presented in process models. However, this does not mean that the two approaches would not reinforce and supplement each other usefully.

Complaints of a poor electronic librarian


The state of electronic documents is characterised by chaos (mixed HTML applications, very slow spread of XML, frequently occurring e-books compatible with nothing, book and journal publishers issuing materials in PDF, Word being the most popular text editor). In order to clear the situation up, it is worth considering how would the ideal electronic text look like. According to the author: it should be browsable, searchable, convertible, correctable, suitable for taking notes of it, copyable, quotable, printable, citadel, identifiable, verifiable, portable, ownable, and transferable. So long no standards could meet all these criteria, therefore several formats must be used, selecting the one best suiting the given purpose. The second part of the study describes the typical problems occurring during the application of the most frequently used formats (Word, RTF, HTML, SGML, XML, PDF, editor softwares, e-book standards).

The Hungarian Electronic Library plans to provide an online browsable format (HTML, XML, PDF) and a zipped, downloadable version as well, and where necessary SGML/XML coding will also be made.

Image digitisation around the millennium  

PUSKÁS Nikoletta – HEGYI Ádám

Digitisation is one way of preserving image documents. The study gives a cross-section of a conference’s papers dealing with the library application of digitisation, its use, and the practical problems of digital technology. The study follows the thematic structuring of the abstract book. First the accounts of the digitisation workprocess closest to the activity of libraries are summarised, then abstracts of lectures on the present and (near) future of digitisation supplement the summary.

Library provision for the socially handicapped  


Ever since their foundation public libraries had been democratic institutions caring for the handicapped. We are living in an age of changes since the political reform. Due to the dramatic change of the economic and political environment, new forms of social deprivation have emerged: unemployment, homelessness, poorness and deviance. All groups of socially handicapped occur in libraries. The article deals primarily with those peripheral groups whose status decreased after the political change. Library provision for these groups has been dealt with to a lesser extent by the profession. Focusing on the present-day practice of libraries, based on her own experiences and interviews she tries to find the answer to the question what the social function of libraries really means, and what methods and tools are available for libraries by means of which the may contribute to the elimination of social handicaps.

GOLDBERGA, Anita: National bibliography in Latvia: tradition and change (Transl.: Murányi Péter)  

Latvian printed national bibliography in general has one unique feature – it covers the whole period of time since the first book in Latvian was published in 1525 till the present time. Another unique characteristic of the Latvian national bibliography is that the indexes of analytical records of all available periodicals beginning from the middle of the 18th century. The Bibliograpy Institute of the National Library of Latvia is the centre of the national bibliography in Latvia. It prepares the printed edition of the monthly Latvian Press Chronicle (Latvijas Preses Hronika), maintains and updates national bibliography databases (started in 1996, at present they cover about 600 000 records in MARC format). The Bibliography Institute cooperates with libraries of the regions, districts, rural districts and other institutions in Latvia. The project conversion-1: the retrospective conversion of the Latvian National Bibliography was started in 2000 by the Bibliography Institute of the National Library of Latvia. It envisages the design of a unique national culture database (the middle of the 18th century – the year 200) converting the printed indexes into Marc format (~136 000 text pages).

MURÁNYI Péter: Brief Latvian-Hungarian comparistics. A comparison of national bibliographies (mainly that of periodical articles)   

After presenting the Latvian national bibliography in general the study focuses on the processing of articles comparing the Repertory of Periodicals, Hungarian National Bibliography with its Latvian counterpart. While an issue of the Latvian bibliography of periodical articles contains the material of all subject fields (including criticism of theatre performances, films and pieces of literature published in periodicals) making the crop of one month available after about three months, the RP of HNB (excluding the material of the 6th class of UDC) appears with much longer delay. (There is a similar difference in the rate of processing books as well.) Latvian articles may be searched in one database into which 110.000 entries are input annually. This amount is about three times as much as the number of entries in the printed version (36.000). This amount is surpassed by the Hungarian databases (10.000 entries in RP HNB, and the entries of the three bibliographies of applied sciences (Hungarian Medical Bibliography, Hungarian Agricultural Bibliography, Technical Articles in Hungarian Periodicals) built on the basis of the bibliographies, and social science databases. However, due to their different processing principles, it would be hard to imagine that they be organised into a united database.

HAJDU Katalin: An account of the winter conference of ALA. Part 1.  

The author reports about the traditional Midwinter Meeting of ALA held in January. It focuses on copyright issues related to digital documents, meaning fights about UCITA i.e. Uniform Computer Transactions Act (for UCITA plans to limit business transactions with softwares, databases, and digital media). The second much debated issue was the limitation of Internet use, namely whether it is constitutional of unconstitutional to apply filters.

BULANIN, D.: Book culture days. Russia through the eyes of a scientific publisher  

An overview of Russian book culture through the eyes of the leader of the Bulanin Publishing House, Saint Petersburg founded in 1992 specialising in humanities. The Russian book market is shrinking from year to year. Books are relatively cheep, there are immense stocks from the previous period that cannot be sold. Popular literature (crime stories, feminine novels, comics) is published and there is no limit for this type of market. The professionalism of publishers is gone, the content and form of books has deteriorated. There are problems with distribution as well. Scientific and technical books are more difficult to sell. The Bulanin Publishing House tries to survive in these circumstances specialising in series, monographs, scientific works, dictionaries, reference works in the field of humanities.