Just an fyi--- Jackie Dooley, UC Irvine

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: NISO Creates OpenURL Standard Committee
Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2001 11:51:20 -0500
From: Marilyn Geller <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: [log in to unmask]
To: [log in to unmask]

(apologies for cross posting to multiple lists)

NISO Creates OpenURL Standard Committee

Bethesda, Md., USA – March, 2001 The National Information Standards
Organization (NISO) has announced the formation of a committee to develop
the OpenURL Standard.  This standard will allow information seekers to be
connected to the appropriate copy of any chosen resource by passing along
bibliographic or descriptive information about the resource in the form of
metadata and taking into account the user’s organizational context or
starting point.  A variety of appropriate related resources may also be made
available using OpenURL syntax. This new standard will let information
providers connect their customers to services and products more cleanly and

The committee is charged to build a syntax for web-transportable packages of
metadata and/or identifiers about an information object. This information is
at the core of context-sensitive or open link technology. By standardizing
the syntax, this work will enable the development of innovative
user-specific services in the scholarly communications industry and other
information fields.  For example, product descriptions could be linked to
technical support services targeted to specific user categories.  The
OpenURL standard may impact the level of basic Internet infrastructure,
where resolution of identifiers in a context-sensitive manner is required.

The Committee’s starting point will be the OpenURL syntax developed by
Herbert Van de Sompel, Patrick Hochstenbach and Oren Beit-Arie. Many
publishers in the scholarly information community are implementing this
syntax in their electronic publications. The detailed proposal is available
at  The Open URL Standard Committee is chaired
by Eric F. Van de Velde of California Institute of Technology and includes
members from a broad spectrum of libraries, publishers and service
providers.  Formal work will begin in May 2001.  Reports on the Committee's
progress will be featured on the NISO website (

About NISO:
NISO, a non-profit organization, is the only U.S. group accredited by the
American National Standards Institute to develop and promote technical
standards for use in libraries and publishing and related information
services.  NISO standards address the communication needs of these
industries in areas such as information retrieval, preservation of
materials, information transfer, forms and records, identification systems,
publication formats, and equipment and supplies.  For further information
about NISO please visit the NISO website at
Information on our current standardization interests and NISO's basic
reference documents, including Bylaws, Operating Procedures and membership
are on the NISO website.

For additional information contact NISO Headquarters at (301) 654-2512.
Email: [log in to unmask]