3R Project Status Report #4

3R Project Status Report #4

3R Project

This is the fourth status report for the RDA Toolkit Restructure and Redesign Project (3R) project. Since the last status report in September the 3R Project team has accomplished the following...

  • The design requirements for the new Toolkit are completed and construction of the site is underway.
  • The mark-up evaluation and strategy for the RDA content in the new data repository is completed.
  • Construction of the new RDA directory and file structure is completed, and editorial work in the content management system files has begun. 

3R at the ALA Midwinter Meeting 

RDA Toolkit hosted several events at the Midwinter Meeting in Denver. In addition to a daylong pre-conference, there was a RDA Forum that included a demonstration of the new toolkit design and a RDA Linked Data Forum (this event was recorded and is available for download). An extended 3R presentation and RDA Steering Committee (RSC) update was a given at the ALCTS Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access (CC:DA) meeting. The pre-conference event, entitled RDA Toolkit Redesign Update and Preview, attracted a lively crowd and covered a range of topics related to the 3R Project. The morning session began with a demonstration of a mock-up of the redesigned Toolkit. A video recording of the demonstration is linked below. Attendees shared their thoughts on the new design and two particular issues dominated the conversation--revision history and instruction numbering. 

The revision history plan for 3R includes providing "Release Notes" for each release of the Toolkit and in each language version of RDA. The Notes would include a brief summary of changes to the Toolkit and to the RDA text and PDFs of changed instructions. The Toolkit would keep each Release Notes for two years, and after which the content would be archived offline on ALA servers. Many at the event argued that that the Release Notes content should remain stored in the Toolkit and accessible for all time. ALA Publishing and the RSC will reevaluate our revision history plan with a goal of improving accessibility to archived material in a way that keeps storage and site maintenance costs under control.

Many members of the audience also expressed a desire for a numbering system for the restructured RDA instructions, citing the need for a kind of shorthand for referencing instructions and subsections of instructions. While the 3R Project currently has no plan for instruction numbering, the RSC is aware of this request from the RDA user community and is actively exploring options. 

The pre-conference event also included presentations on key concepts and issues regarding the restructuring of the RDA standard, including serials modeling, recording methods, and representative expression. Video recordings of the Toolkit demonstration and presentations are available for download from the following links.

  • Part 1
    • Welcome and Housekeeping
    • Demo of RDA Toolkit Redesign by James Hennelly
  • Part 2
    • The Modeling of Serials in IFLA LRM and RDA by Ed Jones
    • RDA and Non-Human Personages by Amanda K. Sprochi
  • Part 3
    • RDA Data Recording Methods, Transcription, and Manifestation Statements by Linda Barnhart
    • Recording Names and Access Points by Kathy Glennan
    • Elements, Attributes, and Relationships, Oh My! presented by Linda Barnhart for Kate James 
  • Part 4
    • Representative Expressions presented by Kathy Glennan for Kate James
    • Timespan presented by Kathy Glennan for Gordon Dunsire

Schedule and Expectations for 3R

As progress is made with the 3R Project what becomes manageable within the project timeline and budget becomes more clear. While significant progress has been made on revisions to the RDA standard it is looking unlikely that we will have text to share with translators and policy statement writers in time for the June release. So ALA Publishing is sticking with its June 13th target for rollout of the redesign, but is scaling back goals for that release. The 3R will effectively rollout in two stages.

3R Rollout 

June 13th: debut of redesigned toolkit with only English language version of the content and possibility of a single policy statement set.

September: release of redesigned toolkit with multiple language version and multiple policy statements.

After the September release, ALA Publishing will consult with the RDA Board and the RSC to determine the official completion date of the 3R Project. The completion date will be announced, and the old Toolkit site will remain accessible for year after the announced completion date. It is important to remember the the old Toolkit site will not be updated so the RDA content will be instantly outdated by the content on the new Toolkit. 

From the time of the initial release of the new Toolkit in June through the date when the old Toolkit is retired, we will be accepting comments, error reports and suggested revisions to both RDA and the Toolkit in order to have them in the top condition by the time all users must transition to the new Toolkit.