The Virtual International Authority File at viaf.org now contains personal names from sixteen different authority files! When I last blogged about the file last April, there were only four: Library of Congress, the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, and the National Library of Sweden. Names depend on context, and VIAF is providing a great view of what each form is within a given national context.
The additions (some are test files):
Bibliotheca Alexandrina (Egypt)
Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal
Biblioteca Nacional de España
National Library of Australia (an RLG Partner)
National Library of the Czech Republic
National Library of Israel (four files, one each of Arabic, Cyrillic, Hebrew, and Latin characters)
Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo Unico (Italy)
Swiss National Library (an RLG Partner)
We’re getting more crystalline structures that show the matching among the files. The image below for Spinoza shows the mapping among the preferred forms of name from ten different files. Try it out!
Click to see the full-sized image.
Karen Smith-Yoshimura, senior program officer, works on topics related to creating and managing metadata with a focus on large research libraries and multilingual requirements.