On Aug 16, 2016, at 9:12 AM, James Weinheimer <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 1st. Has the library such a book by a certain author?
> Have you Bell on the Brain ?
> Have you John Brent, by Theodore Winthrop ?
> 2d. What books by a certain author has it ?'
> What other books by Winthrop have you?
> 3d. Has it a book with a given title?
> Have you John Brent ?
> 4th. Has it a certain book on a given subject ?
> Have you a pamphlet on the bull-frog, by Professor -I've forgotten his name?
> 5th. What books has it on a given subject?
> Have you anything on glaciers? What have you on philosophy? I wish to see all the books.
> 6th. What books has it in a certain class of literature?
> What plays have you ? What poems ?
> 7th. What books have you in certain languages?
> What French books have you? How well provided are you with German literature?
In a time, such as ours, when physical proximity to a book, is less of a determining factor for reading a particular thing or answering a particular question, then the philosophy of the traditional library catalog is less apropos. Things like BIBFRAME are less about answering the question of “Who own what?” and more about “What ideas exist?” Besides, the library catalog was always a librarian’s tool, not a tool for the reader. —ELM