Computer Glossary

Technical Services Department Glossary

A -- B -- C -- D -- E -- F -- G -- H -- I -- J -- K -- L -- M --

N -- O -- P -- Q -- R -- S -- T -- U -- V -- W -- X -- Y -- Z

A -- Top

Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, 2nd edition. These are the revised international rules for cataloging which are used in the Online Catalog. "AACR2 rev." is the 1988 revision of the Code.
American Library Association.

Associate University Librarian. Each AUL is responsible for an area of PUL's operations: technical services, reference and collection development, special libraries, administrative services, and rare books and special collections.

Storage locations for low use library materials, and library materials requiring enhanced security.

Approval Plan
A method of acquiring library materials in which a supplier is given a subject profile outlining what types of books and other materials are to be supplied. The library retains the option of returning unwanted items. Most approval plans include a notification service for items not supplied on approval but which the library may want to order.

A collection of permanently valuable historical records documenting a particular subject or activity or transaction. Also the repository where such a collection is kept.

B -- Top

Binding Information System is the name of the software developed by Wert Bookbinding for libraries to provide them with binding information for both monographs and serial volumes.

C -- Top

CD-ROM (Compact Disc - Read Only Memory)
Computer laser discs on which information (bibliographic citations, abstracts, full-text) is stored for access via computer workstations.

Card Catalog
The file of over six million cards on the first floor of Firestone, representing items cataloged for any location in the Princeton University Library system through the end of 1980. Most items included are books and serials, but the Card Catalog also contains records for some, though by no means all, government documents, microforms, and other types of material. In general, each item is represented by several cards to provide approaches by author, title, and subject. Cards are filed in a single alphabet, following complex filing rules. The previous term used for the Card Catalog was "Public Catalog 1" or "PC1". This is now in computerized image form, and called the "Electronic Card Catalog."
Classed as a set. Applies to series with distinctive individual titles which are cataloged separately (each title gets its own bibliographic record), but which are assigned the same call number with the appropriate volume number at the end.

A system for assigning certain letters or numbers to books in order to group them in different subject areas. PUL uses two classification systems:

An implementation of computer technology, in contrast to mainframe or "host" based systems, which distribute computing activity over several machines. Typically, but not exclusively, client/server architecture involves having the principal database stored on a high powered machine that acts as a "server" while the application or end-user interface runs on a workstation with computing power of its own, like a pc. This pc would be called the client. Client software typically is written to query the server, retrieve large amounts of data from it, and perform data manipulation and presentation on the client machine. In host/mainframe architecture, the data storage and manipulation all takes place on the central computer.

Council (Library Council)
A body composed of the University Librarian, the Deputy University Librarian, the Associate and Assistant University Librarians, the Systems Librarian, the Preservation Librarian, the Human Resources Librarian, and the Staff Development Librarian. The Council, which normally meets once a week, serves as the University Librarian's principal advisory body on matters such as the coordination of internal policy and procedures and the resolution of interdepartmental operating problems. It also advises on issues of general concern to the welfare of the University Library.

D -- Top

Location designation for the General and Humanities Reference Room located on the first floor of Firestone. Other location designations appear on an information sheet available near the Information Center on the 1st floor of Firestone.

Within the library, there are at present 5 departments: Administrative Services, Reference and Collection Development (RCD), Rare Books and Special Collections, Special Libraries, and Technical Services all of which function under the Library Administration. The organization chart shows these and the units which make up each department.

E -- Top

The Electronic Card Catalog
An image database of approximately six million cards arranged in a single alphabetic sequence from A to Z. It includes materials not only in the Firestone stacks but also in the special libraries and collections inside and outside Firestone Library. The Electronic Card Catalog is accessed at workstations, using a keyboard and a mouse. You can search by author, title, or subject.

Refers to the aspect of a catalog record by which it is retrieved, for example, an author entry.

F -- Top

Folio is the public, online system that provides a uniform searching interface for a collection of special PUL databases. Databases searchable in Folio, include news reports from Chile, CRL (Center for Research Libraries catalog), EAI (Expanded Academic Index), Early American Imprints, GPO (monthly catalog of U.S. Government publications), LASP (Latin America, Spain and Portugal Serials List), MASC (PU manuscripts, archives, and special collections), and NNI (National Newspaper Index).

G -- Top

Geac Computers International Inc. is the name of the company from which PUL has acquired the automated circulation/reserve and acquisition/serial control system. It is located in Markham, Ontario, Canada. "Geac" is also commonly used as an alternate term referring to the automated system described above.

A tool developed at University of Minnesota for setting up information rich resources behind a menu-driven interface. Gopher servers incorporate text and graphics, file ransfer using FTP, links to remote services via Telnet, and other gopher servers. Many sites offer a large and varied selection of services and files, and the contents of gopher servers are often searchable using Veronica.

Government Document
Any publication issued at government expense or published under the authority of a governmental body. Included are official papers that record the actions or deliberations of government (such as the Congressional Record), informational publications (like the many statistical compilations of the Bureau of the Census), and reports of research done under government contract.

H -- Top

I -- Top

International Standard Book Number/International Standard Serial Number.

A network of networks that includes local area, regional, and national backbone networks and spans many countries and continents. Networks on the Internet use the same telecommunications protocol (TCP/IP) and provide many services and protocols such as electronic mail, remote login, and file transfer.

J -- Top

K -- Top

Any searchable word in the Online Catalog. For example, words in authors' names and all words in titles or subject headings are keywords. Other words in the MARC record are also searchable, such as words from the imprint and contents note. Some systems other than the Online Catalog also use a keyword approach to searching.

L -- Top

LAN (Local Area Network)
A computer network limited to the immediate area, usually the same building or floor of the building.

The Library Gateway
Provides access to selected electronic library resources, including the Online Catalog, Online Circulation System, Eureka, GPO Database, Online Catalog of the Center for Research Libraries, National Newspaper Index, Expanded Academic Index, Princeton Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections Database, and online catalogs of other research libraries. These resources and others are presented in subject-organized menus and submenus.

Listserv Lists (or Listservers)
These electronic mailing lists facilitate electronic discussion on any number of topics. They are typically available through electronic mail or through USENET NEWS facilities.

M -- Top

The standard format for machine-readable bibliographic records.

Monographs classed separately. Applies to series which have distinctive individual titles and which are cataloged separately with distinct call numbers.

Photographic images greatly reduced in size from the original.

N -- Top

National Coordinated Cataloging Operations at the Library of Congress (formerly Name Authority Co-op). Catalogers in the Technical Services and Rare Books Departments and in the Gest Oriental Library contribute records to the national authority file via NACO. Princeton has been a participant since 1980.

New Jersey Library Association.

The NUC library identifier for Princeton University Libraries.

The RLIN library identifier for Princeton University Libraries (General Collection).

The RLIN library identifier for Princeton's Gest Library collection.

New Jersey Union List of Serials, a microfiche listing of the serial holdings of many New Jersey academic, public and special libraries.

Princeton's Online Catalog. One of the products of Ameritech, a company located in Evanston, IL.

Location designation for area of the Firestone Periodicals Room where current issues of general newspapers are shelved.

The National Research and Education Network is a proposed improved U.S. computer network that is expected to take the place of the Internet.

The National Union Catalog, in book or fiche format. This multi-volume catalog indicates which major U.S. and Canadian libraries own particular titles.

O -- Top

Online Computer Library Center, Inc. A consortium of various libraries serving its members with an online file of bibliographic information, online union catalog, shared cataloging system, interlibrary loan system, and serials control. PUL has access to this system via computer terminals in the General and Humanities Reference Room, in Technical Services, and in Interlibrary Services. Princeton provides interlibrary loan service to New Jersey libraries via the OCLC interlibrary loan system.

Online Public Access Catalog is any type of computerized library catalog, such as Princeton's online catalog.

Online Catalog
The in-house database of machine-readable catalog records, covering items cataloged for any PUL location from January 1980 on. We have acquired software for the Online Catalog from Ameritech. The Online Catalog can be searched by author, title, subject, call number, or keyword.

Oversize books
Books which are larger than average and therefore cannot be accommodated on the usual shelves. The books are shelved in specially designated areas. Oversized oks are identified by q(quarto), e(elephant), f(folio) at the end of the call number.

P -- Top

Location designation for the Firestone Periodicals Room. Located on A floor, in the same area as the Reserve Room, PR houses many of Princeton's current periodicals in the social sciences and humanities.

Princeton University Libraries; also the OCLC library identifier for Princeton University Libraries.

The Princeton University Libraries Web Server
The address (URL) for the Libraries' Web Server is: It contains general information about the Princeton University Libraries, subject-searchable indexes of the collections and professional staff, and in-depth descriptions of the electronic resources accessible in the Library System. The "Virtual Library" link provides access to Internet resources, including catalogs of other libraries worldwide, dictionaries, and many classic works in full-text.

One who uses PUL; also referred to as "user" or "reader" or "researcher."

Q -- Top

R -- Top

Research Libraries Group. RLG is a corporation owned by major universities and research institutions. RLG is dedicated to solving common problems, providing sophisticated access to bibliographic information, maintaining an automated union catalog (called RLIN), expedited interlibrary borrowing and lending of materials for patrons, and developing cooperative collection development and preservation programs.

Research Libraries Information Network. RLIN is the automated bibliographic information system which supports RLG's principal programs. PUL has access to this system via computer terminals.

S -- Top

Special Libraries Association.

Location designation for the Social Science Reference Center located on the A floor of Firestone Library.

A librarian who decides what materials the libraries will acquire. Selectors may be heads of special libraries or subject collections, reference librarians, or bibliographers whose primary function is selection.

A publication issued in successive parts and usually bearing numerical or chronological designations. Serials are intended to continue indefinitely. Examples are: periodicals, newspapers, yearbooks, etc.

Software that allows a computer to offer a service to another computer. Other computers contact the server program by means of matching client software. It is also the computer on which the server software runs.

Shelf List
A file of catalog cards filed in call number order, that is, in the same order the books are found on the shelf. At Princeton, there are both Richardson and Library of Congress shelf lists, each of which is arranged by location and then by call number. The shelf list was closed in 1995.

Small books
Books which are significantly smaller in height or width than average, and therefore are usually not accommodated on the regular shelves. The books may be shelved in specially designated areas or in one of the annexes. Small books are identified by an "s" at the end of the call number.

Special Collections
Collections constituting materials of artifactual and particular research value. They are organized and housed by format, such as Rare Books, Manuscripts, University Archives, Visual Materials, Numismatics, and Papyrology. All are part of the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections.

Separate libraries which deal with departmental studies, such as Libraries architecture, art, biology, or engineering. At PUL these are often parochially called "outside libraries," i.e., outside of Firestone; or branch libraries. Most of these libraries are part of the Department of Special Libraries.

Shelves on which books are arranged for use in call number order. The terms "in the stacks" or "in Firestone" usually refer to the general collection, rather than to specialized areas.

Subject Collections
Collections dealing with special subjects and housed in a defined physical area as distinguished from open stacks; examples are the Afro-American Studies Collection, the Music Collection, the collections forming the Social Science Reference Center, the Miriam Y. Holden Collection on the History of Women, and the Biology Library. Each of these is in the charge of a librarian who is responsible for book selection and reference assistance.

T -- Top

The Internet protocol for remote terminal connection service. Telnet allows a user at one site to interact with a system at another site as if the user's terminal were connected directly to the remote computer.

U -- Top

V -- Top

W -- Top

Wide-Area Information Servers; a very powerful system for locating information in databases across the Internet.

World Wide Web (WWW or W3)
Presents materials to the user in the form of interlinked documents, known as "hypertext." Through WWW a user is able to jump from one document to a related item in another document through pre-established links.

XYZ -- Top