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Hi Peter,

> Here is my question:  How do I best tag the
> following information in a METS
> file (or should they be tagged in an external
> file)? (I want to tag this information because
> I want to be able to search and sort on then
> later.)
> Name of Enlistee
> Age
> Occupation
> Place of Birth
> Place of Enlistment
> Date of Enlistment
> Regiment/Company
>
> What coding schemes/DTD? could I use to
> code this kind of project-specific information?
> Do I need to create my own schema/DTD? Can it
> be coded inside the METS file or must I use an
> external file with its own namespace?
>

Taking the easiest question first, you can
either place the the information inside
the METS document inside a dmdSec (as
you've done in your example), or place
it in a separate document and just refer
to it from the METS document using
an mdRef element within a dmdSec.  Either
way is completely legitimate, and which is
better really depends on your local workflow/
practices and what you think will be easiest
to maintain in the long run.

You can create your own schema if you
want to; the question is whether an existing
schema exists which supports what you want
to do.  If TEI serves your needs, then there's
no reason to go to the effort of developing
your own schema, and as a rule, the
METS initiative favors using existing standards
over developing new solutions whenever possible.
So, if TEI can give you what you need, I'd
say use TEI.  You may be interested in
looking at the experimental XML schema
for TEI which was developed by Sebastian
Rahtz, and which is linked from TEI's Guidelines
page at http://www.tei-c.org/Guidelines2/.

A cautionary note on validating in XMLSpy
with METS (you may already know this, but
I thought it was worth mentioning): The portion
of your METS document which is defined by
the METS schema is being validated by XMLSpy.
However, the METS schema's definition for the
METS:xmlData element just says any-old-XML
can live within the element, which is to say,
as long as it's *well-formed* XML, XMLSpy
will validate the document as conformant
with the METS schema.  If you want the
TEI information within the xmlData element
to be validated against a TEI schema, you're
going to need to include definitions for a
TEI namespace at the beginning of the
METS document as well as reference
a schemaLocation for the TEI schema.
I believe the more recent versions of
XMLSpy will then validate both the METS
document *and* validate the TEI section against
the TEI schema.  At the moment, XMLSpy
is only looking to see if your TEI section is
well-formed.

> Is it kosher to use a TEI section for coding
> content inside a METS
> file or do I need a separate set of dishes?

I don't think the kashrut forbids mixing different
XML standards together. :)  Feel free to
put TEI inside of METS.

Jerome McDonough
Digital Library Development Team Leader
Elmer Bobst Library, New York University
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012
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