MARC Report 236: Program enhancements
MARC Review cataloging checks
The internals of the MARC Review cataloging checks have been overhauled, the objective being to make the feature easier to use.
In the past, to create a 'MARC Review cataloging check':
- MARC Review had to be run,
- a saved review created,
- the saved review exported to XML, and finally,
- the XML version of the review re-imported at runtime.
We have removed the import/export layer1), so that MARC Report now connects directly to the user's saved reviews.
In addition, configuration of MARC Review cataloging checks in the program options was very limited in the past (some might say … 'broken'). That issue has now been addressed. The help pages for this feature have also been updated to reflect these changes.
Searching Lists in MARC Review
- In MARC Review, reviews that are created from lists contained in text files can now be saved to the saved reviews. This is made possible because MARC Review now saves only the filename in the review; in the past it would have had to save the entire list.
- Two types of lists may now be searched in MARC Review: a simple string list, and a 'value list'. The former works the way lists have always worked in the program: each item in the list is matched against the MARC field specified; the latter works in the opposite way: the MARC field specified is searched in the value list.
- The performance of list searches has been greatly increased, and thus, the number of items that can be searched in a list has been increased, to 5,000 for a simple string list, and 500,000 for a value list.
Please review the article: Using MARC Review to find records that match a list of items.
When combined with the topic above (MARC Review cataloging checks), 'List searching' enables the support of custom user value lists in MARC Report. For a tutorial on this, please click here
MARC Report's text conversion utilities–Export to Text and Import from Text–now support LC's MARCBreaker format. When exporting, a new option named 'Export to marc-breaker format' will appear on the Export utility's option form. When importing, there is no need to specify an option–the program will automatically recognize the marc-breaker format and convert it to MARC21.
MARC/XML Conversion utility
Beginning with this version, we will distribute, with all copies of the program, a command-line version of MARC Report's MARC/XML utilities. This utility, called 'cmx.exe' (convert marc xml), will support the same features as the 'windows' versions implemented in MARC Report, including stylesheets. 'Cmx' will make it possible to script and schedule MARC-to-XML and XML-to-MARC conversions in the windows environment. Please visit this link for complete details on 'cmx'.
In addition to cmx.exe, we have started working on an XML-aware concatenation utility called 'x-cat'. Rather than simply mash xml documents together, this utility will load each one into the DOM, and then try to perform a somewhat-intelligent concatenation of the elements in each. A beta version of 'xcat.exe' is included in the 236 distribution–see the cmx link above for details on location and requirements.
MARC Review and Perl
Having cut our programming teeth in a much different environment, it has long been a goal that MARC Review would support the complex regular expressions that one might find in the unix shell or Perl. Beginning with version 236, this objective will begin to be realized. MARC Review now uses the open source PCRE library (Perl Compatible Regular Expressions) as the engine for all regular expression matching.
Version 236 simply changes the foundation. We hope that future versions will take advantage of the options now available to us in our regular expressions. Please visit this link for a page of PCRE examples in MARC Review.