Basically I am looking – again – for my dream catalog. I sense that we are not there yet – but I have to wonder why not. If Google Book Search can do it – why can’t we? I am hoping that there is a product out there that I just don’t know about yet.
I would like marc records and an automated catalog that would search/do the following:
1. The traditional standard subject areas
2. The table of contents
3. The index of the book
4. The full text of the book
5. Allow students to comment & rate the books they read (the ubiquitous 5 star and reader-reviews we see on Amazon et al)
6. Allow students to view & print chapters online. I know… even Google & Amazon (Googlezon?) do not allow folks to print. But if a library owns the books, and if the chapters are only printable by entering a library card – then why not?
I would want to be able to expand or contract the search according to my needs. For instance, if I am searching for information on Renaissance artists – a standard subject heading search would do. If I am searching for Albrecht Durer, I would want to be able to do a table of contents search and perhaps an index search so I could find out which art encyclopedias have information. And finally, if I want to find the effects of violent media on children, I might want to search the full text of the books our library owns.
If Google Book Search and Amazon can do it – why not our library catalogs? For those of us who might not want features 3-6 – they could be turned off. Personally, I would KILL for those abilities.
Yes – I know folks can search Googlezon or World Cat, locate a book and then see what libraries own it. Why should they have to do that? There is a big advantage for our students to search our own library collections which have been carefully assembled and weeded to meet their unique needs.
Please tell me that the promised land is in sight!!