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September 23, 2011

Tim Spalding on what libraries can learn from LibraryThing

I’m a huge admirer of LibraryThing for its innovative spirit, ability to scale social interactions, and its adding value to books. So, I was very happy to have a chance to interview Tim Spalding, its founder, for a Library Lab podcast, which is now posted.

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December 23, 2008

Free the metadata!

The University of Huddersfield is making publicly available the metadata about the circulation of its books — 3 million transactions — over the past thirteen years. This includes a book’s ISBN, number of times it’s been checked out, by which academic department. (It does not include information about individual borrowers.)

BTW, the library used LibraryThing‘s ISBN lookup service to derive some of the ISBNs, and it includes “FRBR-ish” data, i.e., other books that may be closely related.

(Thanks to Seb Schmoller’s post for the tip.)

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November 27, 2008

LibraryThing vs. Library of Congress

Vincent Sterken has posted his master’s thesis, which examines LibraryThing.com to understand the dynamics and utility of social tagging. It begins with an exceptionally clear backgrounder on tagging and taxonomies, and then moves to a fascinating exploration of LibraryThing’s folksonomy, including a comparison of how LibraryThing’s community and the Library of Congress classify books.

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July 12, 2008

Mr. Dewey, tear down that wall!

Tim Spalding, founder of the estimable LibraryThing, is calling on us all to create an open shelves classification project to replace Dewey and his pals. LibraryThing is a brilliant implementation of a what a library built on a social network of readers can be, so I’m excited about Tim’s new idea.

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