Dear MODS list,
The MODS/MADS Editorial Committee is working through a long list of change proposals for the 3.4 and 4.0 versions of MODS. The 3.4 release will include minor changes, and the 4.0 release will include more major changes that prevent backwards compatibility with the 3.x versions. We'll be posting to this list and to the MODS web site specific change proposals as they are approved for inclusion. The Committee meets via conference call biweekly, and we expect that approving the queued changes for 3.4 will take a few more calls. Here is a summary of recent developments:
Changes for 3.4 approved on March 25, 2009:
- Add <physicalDescription><extent> to the MODS namespace but not <part><extent>: one goal of the MODS 3.4 schema is to define explicitly all elements in the MODS namespace so that they are addressable individually to other schemas and information systems. This requires the definitions of elements with the same name to have the same definition. However, <extent> in these two places is very different, and changing either of them is too big a change for a minor release version. The short term-solution for MODS 3.4 is to only put physicalDescription/extent into the MODS namespace and not part/extent. In MODS 4.0 the definitions will be harmonized or one of these elements renamed so that both can be in the MODS namespace.
- Define <scriptTerm> under <language>: a new subelement of <language> will be introduced, <scriptTerm>, with attributes type (code, text) and authority. This will allow explicit and standardized indication (using iso15924) of the script used in a resource.
- Add lang, xml:lang, script and transliteration attributes to all MODS elements: This will introduce more flexibility for adding specific elements t
o a MODS record using multiple languages.
The MODS/MADS Editorial Committee will hold our next conference call on Wednesday April 8, and will be reviewing more change proposals at that time. Please post to the MODS list if you have a feature you'd like to see in 3.4 or a future revision, or if you have any comments on the changes to be discussed on the next call by the Editorial Committee.
Changes to be discussed on April 8, 2009:
* Add edtf date format as an option on date elements
* Support RDA "Content Type" element
* Add "references" or "reviewOf" to relatedItem type attribute list
* Expand use of qualifier attributes
* Add languageOfWork element
* Add usage attribute to more MODS elements
We look forward to hearing your feedback,
Chair, MODS/MADS Editorial Committee
Digital Library Program
Indiana University - Bloomington
Wells Library W501
Inquiring Librarian blog: www.inquiringlibrarian.blogspot.com