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Avery videodiscs to be made available

Library Systems Newsletter [December 1992]

Project AVIADOR (Avery Videodisc Index of Architectural Drawings on RYAN) is nearing completion. Supported by grants from the Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, AVIADOR will provide computerized cataloging information on 41,000 architectural drawings in the Collection of Columbia's Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library and incorporate an image of each drawing on videodisc. Users can flip through whole collections or go directly to a specific drawing, all without handling the originals. Not only will access to Columbia's historic collections of architectural drawings be significantly improved, but the project will help to preserve them.

The drawings represent 40 prominent archival collections at Avery, including the works of such well known architects as Frank Lloyd Wright (c.546 items); those of Wright's mentor, Louis Henry Sullivan (c.175 items); those of the popular renderer, Hugh Ferris (c.310 items); and a sample of McKim, Mead & White (c.560 items). The smallest collection cataloged during the project is that of James Kenwick, Jr. (58 items) while the 8,248 drawings from the Ely Jacques Kahn collection represent the evolution of his firm over a number of years.

Descriptive cataloging has been based on Elisabeth W. Betz' Graphic Materials: Rules for Describing Original Items and Historical Collections (1982) and the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, 2nd ed. (1978).

AVIADOR is designed for use with a personal computer connected to the Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN) mainframe. RYAN has devised a program for the interface that will connect each of the 41,000 still-frame images of drawings on the videodisc to the appropriate catalog record on RLIN. Using a floppy-disk-based interface, a user oll be able to:

  1. search for the appropriate bibliographic record(s) in RLIN using a variety of textual indexes (such as architect, title, building name, geographic location, etc.)
  2. when a desired record is identified and displayed in the IBM PC monitor, place the cursor at the accession number(s) for a particular drawing within the RYAN record, and
  3. then call up the corresponding visual image(s) on the videodisc monitor by pressing the appropriate function key on the IBM PC keyboard.
Alternatively, the user can:
  1. begin with the graphic index by scanning the images on the videodisc, and
  2. when a desired image has been identified and displayed on the video monitor, call up the corresponding bibliographic record by pressing the appropriate function key on the IBM PC keyboard.
Fifty copies of the videodisc have been produced. They are available at $500 each, including the LaserLink software and a user manual. RLIN LaserLink is a Microsoft Windows application designed to be used in conjunction with online searching of the RYAN data base.

Currently, only images on the Avery Architecture Drawings are linked to RLIN bibliographic records. These can be found in the RLIN Visual Materials file (VIM). They contain the words (Avery Image] after each image accession number, indicating that the image is located on the videodisc. One can use the LaserLink software only over a direct-dial, SprintNet, or Internet connection to RUN. One cannot use the software on the dedicated RYAN network.

[Contact: Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, AVIADOR Project, Columbia University, New York, NY 10027.]

View Citation
Publication Year:1992
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Library Systems Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 12 Number 12
Issue:December 1992
Publisher:American Library Association
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Notes:Howard S. White, Editor-in-Chief; Richard W. Boss, Contributing Editor
Libraries: Columbia University
Subject: OCLC
Record Number:5178
Last Update:2023-09-03 02:21:02
Date Created:0000-00-00 00:00:00