Vol. 9 No. 2 (2018)
Reports & Reviews

The early printed book. Limits and perspectives of censuses

Fabio Cusimano
Ambrosian Library, Italy

Published 2018-05-15


  • Early printed books; Cataloguing; Digitisation; Metadata

How to Cite

Cusimano, F. (2018). The early printed book. Limits and perspectives of censuses. JLIS.It, 9(2), 294–300. https://doi.org/10.4403/jlis.it-12471


On November 14th and 15th 2017, at the Stabat Mater room of Archiginnasio Public Library of Bologna, the conference “Il libro antico. Limiti e prospettive dei censimenti”, coordinated by Regione Emilia-Romagna - Istituto per i beni artistici, culturali e naturali (IBC), took place.

On the first day there has been two sessions: one morning session titled I fondi librari antichi: un patrimonio da conoscere, promuovere, valorizzare, tutelare; and one afternoon session titled Catalogare per conoscere, promuovere, valorizzare, tutelare: le banche-dati. The second and last day has introduced a session titled: Catalogazione e digitalizzazione: situazione presente e prospettive future.

This conference represents a great opportunity to reflect on a still open way about early printed book. A lot of proposed speeches have often reminded that forty years passed since the introduction of automation in libraries related to early printed book; a setting which deserves to be studied and discovered again, above all in the light of the latest innovations and the evolutionary process of information technology and Web.

Although information technology has made remarkable progresses on creation of ad hoc software environment, as well as in the definition of “open” and flexible metalanguages to create metadata and codify in a digital way hierarchically ordered and organized text contents, there is still much to do, especially for early printed books, with the specific goal to simplify and increase the census of item data and the connection between these data (which they often elude the strict mechanism of databases and/or forms of census) and digital copies on the Web.


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