Waiting for editorial to arrive for some training

A conference room at Dundurn in Toronto waiting for editorial to arrive for training.


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ISBN-13 and ‘979’ prefix

Ridiculous claim from BISG (click title of this blog to link to the Publishers Weekly article) that publishers accidentally supplying ISBN-13 using the ‘979’ rather than the ‘978’ prefix is all the fault of the software vendors for ‘erroneously’ allowing them that option.

Basically, ‘979’ is the prefix that is to be used when all the ‘978’ prefixes have been used up. We allow this to be selected in our software as we have an eye to the future and our software of course has to last for many years. So, it is not erroneous and we can’t be held responsible if publishers select it wrongly.


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Dundurn Group, Toronto

End of Church Street, Toronto

Training staff at Dundurn Group in Toronto. This is shot from end of their road (Church Street). If you would like to trial for free the Anko Publishing Manager the software that they use to run their publishing business simply go to the downloads section of our website.

Filed under: Publishing

CDs and ebooks

Following on from our query about use of the product form composite and ebooks this is a quote from Nielsen Bookdata in the UK:

‘Please do give CD-ROMs containing an ebook a product form of DG. For a pack containing both a paperback book and an ebook (on CD) I’d expect a mixed media product form code followed by use of the contained item composite to indicate that the mixed media item contains a paperback book + ebook.’

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Inspiration in August in Stockholm

Exhibition Poster

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Toronto for week commencing 26th June

I will be in Toronto during the week of 26th of June carrying out installations, training and have a couple of demos for new Anko Publishing Manager clients – If you would like a demo is person and are in and around the Toronto area then please drop me a line and we can schedule an appointment.

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Long day and Onix compliance

Heading back out of New York after week of meetings and training. Had good last night in Brooklyn so started day at the Carroll Street subway station and we managed to get test Onix files out to all the principal trading partners of Industrial Press (so please note in can be done in relatively short periods of time if you are willing take charge of your title infotmation and apply yourself to the standard).

So left the Industrial Press office on the 21st floor of 200 Madison Avenue for the left time as they move a couple of blocks over next week. And managed to jam in the England and the bulk of the Sweden game in a local bar before heading to JFK for KLM flight home.

If you would like to try a free copy of the software used by Industrial Press simply go to http://anko.ie and go to the downloads section.

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Getting old

Walked past this spot (Abe Lebewohl Park) in the East Village and was over come with feeling of familiarity – that bench is where I used to crash with my head on my Powerbook after a bit of a night – but great location handy for Midtown and easy to wander down to Lower Manhattan if required. Must be getting old wouldn’t have thought twice about it but now not quite up to it.

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How far do we let the Americans go?

I have as someone who has to do business in a post 911 America been subject to all kinds of abuses, suspension and just plain trampling of my rights during the simple of act of just getting on and off a plane. Oh, and almost exclusively with absolutely no explanation ever being offered. Although, I do remember one pathetic excuse given after 5 hours in a room without access to a phone at LAX couple of years ago that apparently they had received information that I had paid cash for my plane ticket. I am not kidding that is what they said.

How they got access to such information in a very clear breach of the data protection laws supposed to afford us EU citzens some protection is beyond me. As a side note I was somewhat comforted that the EU is now going to enforce these rules as it seems airlines have been passing all kinds of personal information about us to US Immigration authorities while we are in the air. But what will that mean? Will be have to get visas each time? What on earth does the US think the effect on business will be? And let’s be honest are we are really any safer than we were on 910?

Oh, anyway the spark for this rant was an announcement on my KLM flight from Amsterdam that the US Department of Homeland Security has stated that people must not be allowed to ‘congregate in areas’ on the plane. So apparently as well as well as our right to privacy our right of free association is also not actually a right but something we may our many not have depending on the whims of the US goverment. And don’t forget for 95% of any such flight we are not actually in the US.

Absurd doesn’t really seem to quite cover it. Does it?

Filed under: Uncategorized

Product Form and ebooks

At Industrial Press I am in the process of working on their initial Onix feeds and they have a great many products which are a mixture of a print book with a contained item of a CD ROM which has on it an ebook. I posted this query to the Onix group in hope of some guidance as the current Product Form elements don’t really accurately deal with the issue. I have included the response which may be of benefit to others.

—–Original Message—–
From: ONIX_IMPLEMENT@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ONIX_IMPLEMENT@yahoogroups.com] Sent: 13 June 2006 13:35
To: ONIX_IMPLEMENT@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ONIX_IMPLEMENT] Product Form and eBooks

I have a lot of products which are ebooks which are supplied on CD-
ROM – For my product form should I categorise them as a DG (ebooks)

Many thanks for any advice.

Response from Howard Willows at Nielsen Bookdata in the UK:
This raises an interesting issue and highlights an inconsistency in the “format-related” code lists, which we should probably look at in the current review of Code Lists if we have time or may have to roll over until the next full release of ONIX (Release 3.0). I think this inconsistency has emerged through the organic and case-by-case way in which these code lists have been developed, and may not have been present if all of these lists had begun life at the same time.

Indeed, this inconsistency may prove to be unavoidable for good pragmatic reasons, but we should look at it at least to provide guidance for users.

Essentially, most of the Product Form values in List 78 are to do with the physical nature of the product, or the means of delivery in the case of non-corporeal items. You can then add values from other lists, for example:

List 10 and 11 to indicate e-publication types and formats

List 78 Product Form Detail to identify particular variants (sizes of paperbacks, specific computer game types, etc)

List 81 Product Content Type to indicate the contents consist of an audiobook or other audio, or a game, etc.

(also Lists 79, 80 and 82 with which I am less concerned here).

But the same type of information is held in different lists, and different types of information are held in the same lists.

For instance, why should “audiobook” be a Product Content Type, when “e-book” is a Product Form? In the first case, you are expected to give precedence to the carrier – ie it is an audio-cassette or audio CD or (increasingly now) an online resource – and then provide the supplementary information that the contents of the carrier comprise an audiobook. In the second case, you are expected to give precedence to the contents – it is an e-book as distinct from any other kind of digital item, and then use Lists 10 and 11 to give information about its format.

The same issue arises about digital maps. Should we say it is primarily a map, and add that it is digital, or that it is primarily a digital item that happens to be a map? Both bits of information are crucially important.

There is a principle here that as Product Form is the dominant and most widely used element of all the format-related elements, you should use this to give the clearest possible indication of what “type of thing” the product is – given the values currently available.

To get back to the case in question, the problem is that the two things you want to say are in the same List. It seems to me however to be most pertinent to say that these products are e-books (DG). I say this because choosing DG seems more likely to prompts you to look at the elements in PR.4 and select the appropriate values in List 10 and 11.

Of course this option gives you no means of being able to say that they are CD-ROMs in any structured way, only in a free text comment – but then you would be similarly restricted if you used DB (CD-ROM) and then looked for somewhere to say they are e-books.

Given a more consistently arranged set of lists however, I could envisage something like:

Product Form: CD-ROM
Product Content Type: e-book
Digital Item Format Type: PDF

Hope this is useful. What do others think?

Howard Willows
Nielsen BookData

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