Ran across this during digital "housekeeping"...
----- Original Message -----
From: "Steven Smolian" <[log in to unmask]>
> Library vs private.
> We might begin with what info libraries want and what collectors want.
I don't know if we ever established this; I thought the upcoming
convention might cover this, but it apparently won't...
> A list of fields (non-MARC) from each group might be a useful start.
Not so much from each group...though that could be useful. The
biggest difference is between digital cataloguing using some form
of database...whose task is to tell the user or owner what records
are actually included in the collection or holdings...and digital
creation of an discographic archive, which deals NOT with a specific
set of phonorecords but a specific subset (selected by the archivist)
of all phonorecords in existence!
> The argument about cataloging not being discoraphic holds no water with
> the computer can accomodate it.  Why leave important stuff out?
Actually, a good point...not because the users might need the
information, which is possible, but because it might be possible,
even probable that the catalog will be accessed by the creator
of an archival file in order to complete a data record.

The catalog database has a primary function of answering "does
the collection include this phonorecord, and if so, where is it
and how do I find it?" Of course, for certain researcher users,
the actual phonorecord itself is of secondary interest to the
data about/on it...if I am writing a work on a certain artist,
I may only need to establish things like the date, matrix number,
"lifespan" in catalog, etc. of a given phonorecord rather than
hearing the contents. This user really needs...

The discographic archive, which has a primary function of answering
"when was the record made, by whom, and what were the physical
details?" In other words, this database deals NOT with a specific
copy of a given phonorecord, but, rather, the set of all examples
of that phonorecord. For example, data on acquisition, condition,
location andd so on apply to a single example of a record, while
data on date recorded, date issued, matrix/catalog number and so
on apply to all, or all of a given subset, of the phonorecords
exemplified by the known example.

Now, what someone needs to do...and it could be to
establish a standard for what kind of data needs to be included
in the database, and in what format or compatible formats (the
former for fields, the latter for databases). If done properly,
the result would be a set of compatible databases, which would
allow exchange of data between databases as well as simplify
the creation of the ultimate phonographic database (which has
been discussed but never to my knowledge attempted).

Any thoughts?
Steven C. Barr