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Hi Jennifer,

 

That's a great question, as I bet there's a lot of variation out there.
As for "undated" dates, we've decided not to use the normal attribute in
our encoding for those (but we do use the normalized attribute for every
other date instance).  That said, the RLG Best Practice Guidelines for
EAD <http://www.oclc.org/programs/ourwork/past/ead/bpg.pdf>  suggests
that if you know of certain cutoffs for the dates involved (see page 6),
you can encode those like so:

 

<unitdate normal="1800/1912">undated</unidate>

 

However, I actually don't know of anyone that's currently using the
normalized dates for much of anything (aside from, "if the date occurs
in the inclusive span, return result").  I would like to use them, for a
number of different services, but right now they aren't being used at
all really.  (Perhaps they are being used by such systems like the
Archivist's Toolkit?).   

 

 

Mark Custer

 

 

From: Encoded Archival Description List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf
Of Betts, Jennifer
Sent: Wednesday, January 14, 2009 10:11 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Normalized dates

 

Dear colleagues,

 

I am conducting an informal poll as to how organizations are using
normalized dates.

 

Brown University and members of the Rhode Island Archival and Manuscript
Collections Online consortium (RIAMCO) have switched from dtd to schema
so our prior normalized format for undated materials is no longer valid:

 

<unitdate encodinganalog="245$f" type="inclusive"
normal="">undated</unitdate>

 

 

Using the schema, the following two examples will validate:

 

1. <unitdate encodinganalog="245$f" type="inclusive">undated</unitdate>

 

2. <unitdate encodinganalog="245$f" type="inclusive"
normal="0000">undated</unitdate>

 

 

-          How are other organizations formatting the normalized for
undated materials?  Right now we are leaning towards option 1 for
undated materials.

 

-          Regarding normalized dates in general, what do organizations
use as their rationale for using or not using normalized dates?  Our
current plan is to keep using the normalized format for all dated
materials but we are most curious as to what might be the argument
against using normalized dates.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 - Jennifer

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  

Jennifer J. Betts

RIAMCO Project Manager
John Hay Library, Box A

Brown University

Providence, RI  02912

E-MAIL:  [log in to unmask]

TEL:  (401) 863-2148

CELL: (401) 480-1173

FAX:  (401) 863-2093 

RIAMCO wiki: https://wiki.brown.edu/confluence/display/library/RIAMCO
<https://wiki.brown.edu/confluence/display/library/RIAMCO>