How to Contribute Records to SOLAR
An export of MARC records, including information like barcode, call number, and count can be loaded into the Solar system. Note, however, that completeness and consistency is important in a
database of records from many sources. Large numbers of incomplete
records can accumulate quickly if one is not careful. Hence, records
that lack basic data elements such as ISBN, LCCN, imprint and physical
description will be skipped. Other markers of poor cataloging practice
will be used to determine which records will be loaded and which will
remain for the local library to add interactively or provide in an improved
Even before initial loading, it is important to consider how you will
keep your SOLAR information current. You should decide on one of
the following before contributing records or beginning use of the system.
Fully Interactive Method: Add and delete all records interactively,
using software and training provided by the
Maine InfoNet project.This method may be appropriate for libraries
that have no local automated system. It may also appeal to
libraries that put a premium in being able to make immediate changes
in the database.(This method can be used even if the library
has provided a file of records for initial loading.)
Batch Adds Method: Send a complete file of records
the first time, then in subsequent cycles send files containing only
new titles. The library is expected to handle deletions through
direct, interactive use of database editing software provided by
the Maine State Library.This method will make sense for libraries
that have a manageable number of deletions and don't mind doing them
interactively. It may also make sense for libraries with a
backlog of records from a cataloging program but without a functioning
automated library system. Each successive file of "Adds"
must not duplicate records you have previously sent.
This method requires a unique barcode number in every record. Barcodes
must NOT be re-used.
Details of the mechanics of sending files
Notes On SOLAR Operation
- Incoming files are always compared to a mirror image of SOLAR, and
then to a Library of Congress database. In most cases, only your
call number and a handful of other local data elements are moved to
this record. The bibliographic description in your record will usually
be replaced. The only exception: records that can be identified
as having the markers of good quality standards based cataloging
and are either older than the contents of our resource files or represent
local or unique resources.
- The database operates on the shared master record principle. At
the time of loading, the incoming record is sought in the database. If
a match is found, the best record based on encoding level is retained
in the database, and the holdings information from the other record
is moved over onto the master record. This may sometimes mean
that subject headings or notes in the record with the lower encoding
level will not survive.
- Very brief records and other records that cannot be successfully
merged will not be loaded. There is no assurance of 100% loading.