ISFDB:Help desk/archives/archive 02

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This is an archive page for the Help Desk. Please do not edit the contents. To start a new discussion, please click here.
This archive includes discussions from May - August 2007.

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Errors in the awards database

While verifying a few Delany items I came upon this publication which exists only because there's a mistitled award entry. It should have been attributed to Distant Stars. How does one go about correcting the awards database if an error is found? (Or to at least notify the individual who can make corrections.) Thanks. Mhhutchins 21:01, 22 May 2007 (CDT)

Al made a prototype award editor available some time in January, but then had to pull it since it proved not ready for prime time. He was still working on it last I checked.
For now, I would just delete the "shell" Publication record and then merge the remaining Title record with the Distant Stars record. The "Title Merge" logic preserves Award data, so that's what I have been doing in similar cases. Ahasuerus 21:09, 22 May 2007 (CDT)

Adding Awards

Hi all, a newbie question ...

I am interested in adding recent Ditmar & Aurealis awards to titles. How do I do this? Thanks j_clark 20:34, 24 May 2007 (CDT)

Welcome aboard! :) Unfortunately, you have spotted a weak link in the ISFDB. Our programmer, Al, made a basic award editor available earlier this year, but it proved inadequate and Al had to pull it. He is currently working on a more robust version and it is #1 on the list of major items to add. Al is taking a break at the moment, but he should be back over the weekened (hopefully!), so with luck the editor will be re-enabled shortly. Ahasuerus 20:46, 24 May 2007 (CDT)

Uncredited Cover Artist as Psuedonym

A number of covers for later issues of Science Fiction Stories are uncredited but are documented elsewhere. I made "uncredited" the pseudonym for the artist but the pseudonym information does not show up in the Publication Listing. The information shows up correctly in the artist listing. Is there a better way to do this? Should I just put the real artist name in the cover artist field and document the source in magazine notes?--Swfritter 19:01, 25 May 2007 (CDT)

When things like this come up I put the data right in the publication and add a note stating the source. For example, a publication may not state its printing date but a later edition may have a printing history. In that case I fill in the date for the earlier publication and add a note that the date was not stated in the publication itself and that the date in the ISFDB record comes from the printing history stated in the #nth printing. Likewise, with author credits if the author is not credited in the publication I always add a note with one of
  • The cover artist is not credited nor is a signature visible.
  • The cover artist is not credited but the signature "xyzzy" is clearly visible and it's assumed to be Joe Bob.
  • The cover artist is not credited but Locus says .... Marc Kupper (talk) 21:31, 25 May 2007 (CDT)
I tend to do what Marc has described and I have seen other editors use the same method, so I think it's safe to say that it's a common (although perhaps less-than-perfectly-documented) approach. Ahasuerus 23:49, 25 May 2007 (CDT)
Good. The easier the better. The most important thing is clear documentation of sources and in this case it is relatively easy to do.--Swfritter 08:12, 26 May 2007 (CDT)

Editing Verified Publications

What steps should be followed if a publication has been verified by an individual but needs more work - things like book reviews, original publication date of a story, art attributions? Notify the verifier (if they are still around) before changes are made? And in the event there is no response? Is the publication truly verified if changes are made?--Swfritter 14:13, 29 May 2007 (CDT)

If I am adding data to a Verified Publication record from a primary source, the first thing I do is check that I have the exact same publication as the original verifier. Sometimes two different printings of the same edition may have different prices, cover art and Cthulhu knows what else. Once I am sure that I am looking at the same Publication, I simply add any missing data elements. If my Publication's data differs from what is specified in the current ISFDB record, I ask the original Verifier to double check.
If I am adding data from a non-primary source, e.g. if I am adding the publication date/price for an SFBC edition from Locus, then I specify the source of the added data in the Notes field. Ahasuerus 17:58, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
I've asked about what "verification" (from primary source) actually means several times. And got a few answers, but you might as well ask every editor to post their own definition on their user-page rather than try and define it universally. It seems that as a minimum, people won't verify something that's got anything WRONG with it. (Although mistakes can happen.) But they won't necessarily add stuff we want - I've seen verified collections with no contents, for instance. Or with contents but no page numbers. Level 1: "If you aren't going to edit it, you can still verify what's there." A bit lazy, but it's better than nothing. BLongley 18:30, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
If you want to ADD stuff that doesn't over-ride apparently-verified information, go ahead without asking, IMO. Extra reviews, interior art, page numbers, fine. Cover-art URL might be a little dodgy unless you're VERY sure it's the exact same edition. BLongley 18:30, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
Changing (rather than adding) anything in the pub itself - you should ask for extra confirmation from the previous verifier, I think. Who may be surprised about you questioning something he or she never actually entered... :-/ (This is why I want multiple verifiers enabled, preferably with details of what they verified.) But mostly we're people that don't get rid of books once verified so it's usually OK to ask at least. What the waiting period should be for an answer is up for debate. BLongley 18:30, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
Changing dates of contents would normally be done at the title level, so you're not really stomping on a pub's verification. But DO take verifications into account when you look at how many pubs are affected: changing to an earlier sighting is usually OK, changing to a later one is suspect: clarifying a XXXX-00-00 year to a XXXX-XX-00 month is borderline, but if the first publication has a magazine date I'm normally OK with it. BLongley 18:30, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
I don't want to DEMAND a certain level of detail before we can verify a pub - for instance, a lot of my books are second-hand reading copies rather than collectibles, so I can't provide the cover price at times, but contents and page numbers will be fine. But, as you've noticed, "verification" doesn't mean true, final, incontrovertible verification. BLongley 18:30, 29 May 2007 (CDT)
Thanks for the input. I am working with magazines so multiple editions (except foreign) are rarely a problem. I hope nobody out there takes accuracy queries personally. I certainly appreciate all the constructive advice I can get. I can't help but think what a remarkable piece of work ISFDB can be in another five years.--Swfritter 20:16, 29 May 2007 (CDT)

Merging Magazine Editor attribution by Year

I couldn't find any specific instructions. I know they need to be merged. The only method I could figure was A) add magazines (xmag, Feb 1957;xmag, Mar 1957 for instance) B) Add dummy title (xmag - 1957) C) Merge the titles for the year D) Delete the dummy title. Right?--swfritter 12:50, 30 May 2007 (CDT)

Here's how I do it. Enter information for two magazines, let's say "SFMag Jan 2010" and "SFMag Feb 2010". Merge them both under SFMag Jan 2010. Now under the EDITOR record SFMag Jan 2010 are both the Jan and Feb pubs. Then I just change the name of the EDITOR record to "SFMag - 2010". Then each time I enter a new SFMag Xmonth 2010, I just merge it with "SFMag - 2010". CoachPaul 16:15, 30 May 2007 (CDT)
Thanks. But at least I have the consolation of knowing my way would have worked, but oh so inefficently.--swfritter 23:48, 30 May 2007 (CDT)

Ouch, works fine except when the editor is a psuedonym. Science Fiction Stories, 1955. I did the merge on the titles; that worked just fine. They show up where they should be but I also gained six variant titles. How do I get rid of the variant titles. How do I avoid this problem?--swfritter 16:43, 1 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I had the same problem when I tried to merge the issues of Amazing in which Elinor Mavor used the pseudonym "Omar Gohagen". Someone here (Ahasuerus?) told me of a known bug concerning pseudonyms and magazine series. I haven't heard anything about it being fixed. Mhhutchins 17:25, 1 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Sorry, I didn't tell you this step because I didn't realize that you were doing a psuedonym. Go to when you get there, click on TITLES. Then merge all of the Science Fiction Stories 1955 titles you see into the January 1955 Title. This will cause all of the extra stuff to disappear from the main bibliography page of Robert A. W. Lowndes. When you change the January 1955 Title on the main page, you may have to go back to the psuedonym page and rename it there too. Hope this helps. CoachPaul 20:11, 1 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Worked great. Thanks.--swfritter 15:16, 2 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I'm glad - I think I'm the Mod that approved that, and I was very nervous! The sooner we get more Magazine knowledgeable mods the better.... BLongley 18:34, 2 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Anthology in an Anthology

I was trying to include Robert Silverberg's Beyond Control Anthology in Science Fiction Special 14 Anthology but it didn't include in the contents page. Is it possible to put an Anthology inside a different Anthology?Kraang 21:28, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I believe you can either list the entire anthology (Beyond Control) as just one of the contents, or separately supply all of the stories individually, but you can't do both. Ideally, the main anthology should have the OMNIBUS type, and the contents of it are the publications that make up the omnibus, whether they be novels, collections, or anthologies. Mhhutchins 21:50, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)
The Anthology Science Fiction Special 14 contains two novels(different authors) and Silverbergs Anthology. When i entered the Beyond Control title as an anthology it didn't turn up in the contents.Kraang 22:06, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)
It's there now. I changed the TYPE to OMNIBUS. So now we know you can't add an anthology to an anthology, but you can add it to an omnibus. Mhhutchins 22:31, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)
One minor problem it's now a stray publication without a title. Is there away to link it to it's title?Kraang 23:00, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Actually, a "stray publication" is a bit more than a minor problem since you can't search for its Title. The way to handle Stray Publications is to add a Title that matches the Publication's title and its title type. In this case, I added an OMNIBUS Title to it and it is much happier now. I have also merged it with our pre-existing Science Fiction Special 14 Title. Ahasuerus 23:22, 7 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Difference between help:screen:newpub & help:screen:editpub

I intend to propose some minor changes but I notice that these screens appear to be nearly identical. Are the same changes made to both screens? Is there some reason why there need to be two separate screens? The changes that should be made are a) Interior artwork entries should have the page number of the first page where art appears within a story b) Authorship of Letters to the Editor should be attributed to the editor if he signs his responses, to "uncredited" if the responses are not signed, or "various" if there are no responses to the letters.--swfritter 12:17, 11 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The only reason for two separate screens, IMO, would be that the edit-pub should include warnings about changing things that maybe oughtn't be changed, if you can figure out why they were that way in the first place. Which, as we have no "came from Locus", "came from Contento", "came from Amazon", "came from Al" notes on data can be troublesome. I'm not a great fan of the Help - I've learnt far more from Mods telling me which bits are still relevant - but I support the aim of improving it. (If I understood it all, I'd break it down into field-level help and work up from there.) BLongley 17:34, 11 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Minor changes should be fine, if it's at all controversial just tell people what you changed and they can go look if it's a major issue for them. That might be the way to get some consensus, as talking about proposed changes gets far less response. :-/ BLongley 17:34, 11 Jun 2007 (CDT)
In specific response: I don't care about b), and for a) I agree (if you mean that's the minimum) but I won't object to somebody giving even more detail and giving EVERY bit of interior-art within a story its own page-number. BLongley 17:34, 11 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Title: Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year by Lester del Rey is a mess. Every one of these hc's is a different publication with different stories. I know how to separate them into individual records, but not having the actual books, I don't know what titles to separate them into. Contento lists them as such 'Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year [1972]', with different years inside the brackets. Is that the way we should do it here, or does somebody have the hc editions of these books, and can find a better alternative? CoachPaul 19:50, 13 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The full titles of these anthologies followed the following pattern: "Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year, Third Annual Collection", "Best Science Fiction Stories of the Year, Fourth Annual Collection", etc. It looks like Contento considered "Nth Annual Collection" a subtitle and dropped it. He then had to find a way to disambiguate these books and added the year of publication in square brackets. I suggest we use the full titles, including the subtitles, instead. I have the first two in hardcover and the rest in paperback and can physically verify them around 2006-06-30. Ahasuerus 20:14, 13 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Great. I have one in paperback which is how I discovered the problem, but was afraid to use the same naming convention on the hardcovers without any verification because I've run into too many instances in the past where the names of the various different editions of the same publications just didn't match up. CoachPaul 22:10, 13 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The Great SF Stories by Asimov and Greenberg

Many of these titles are in the same shape as the following record. If you go there you will notice that there are 3 individual pubs entered, and looking at them, it seems that they are all of the same pub with different levels of information attached. None are Verified and it's probable that a BOT grabbed all three. The upper one, with the least amount of information seems to be the original and has the Tag that best fits the series. Publication:GRTSFS31980 I wish to remove two of the pubs to help streamline the db, but I'd like to retain the best Tag, the one I've listed above. It wouldn't be all that hard to cut and paste in the rest of the information, but it would save several hours if I were to do the whole series this way to just use the pub with the most information and then change the Tag to the best one that is above. Do you think that it will mess up anything in the db if I do so, and do the Mods think that it is a good idea and worth while? CoachPaul 12:58, 15 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I have volumes 1, 3, 5, and 6 from DAW Books. I don't have time to do verification but
  • Volume 1 - only has 1 pub
  • Volume 3 - Had three pubs, I deleted two pubs that were redundant (one with no contents and the other had stories but did not have the introduction / epilogue).
  • Volume 5 - Had three pubs, I deleted two pubs that were redundant, one with no contents and the other was missing the following. I think the two missing stories were because someone hit <enter> which resulted in an accidental submission, they hit <back> and added last two stories in the book (I checked my copy). The missing contents were.
    • Introduction (The Great SF Stories 5 (1943)) [ESSAY]
    • Symbiotica [SHORTFICTION]
    • The Iron Standard [SHORTFICTION]
  • Volume 6 - had four pubs
    • SCSMVPRSNT1981 - no contents and a 9991743499 ISBN. I believe Powell's Books creates 999 ISBNs when a book does not have a barcode (and they are too lazy to key it in from the spine). I deleted this.
    • THGRSTRS0F1981 - CoachPaul, you verified this but would like you to double-check the following against your copy:
      • You verified the ISBN as 0-87997-607-5. Does it have 0-87997-670-5?
      • You verified the date as 1981-00-00. Does it have 1981-12-00?
      • You verified the pub with no cover artist. Is Oliviero Berni credited on your copyright page?
    • THGRSTRS011981 - This looks like a placeholder I added as the image is of my copy and the notes look like how I used to do them. CoachPaul, does the image match your copy? If so, we can copy/paste the URL to the record you verified. Feel free to copy/paste the publication notes too if you feel they are accurate and at that point we can delete this record as it has no contents.
    • GRTSFS61982 - Odd... It's missing four of the first five stories and has one extra story, Symbiotica, that's in Vol 5. It's missing:
      • 9 • Introduction (The Great SF Stories 6 (1944)) • essay by Isaac Asimov and Martin H. Greenberg
      • 13 • Far Centaurus • (1944) • shortstory by A. E. van Vogt
      • 35 • Deadline • (1944) • novelette by Cleve Cartmill
      • 64 • The Veil of Astellar • (1944) • shortstory by Leigh Brackett (this one is in the odd publication)
      • 93 • Sanity • (1944) • shortstory by Fritz Leiber
      • 110 • Invariant • (1944) • shortstory by John R. Pierce
I believe this record exists because of The Golden Years of Science Fiction: Third Series which is an omnibus of vol 5. and vol 6 but dropped five stories (which CoachPaul also verified). The four stories dropped from THGRSTRS011981 were also dropped from Golden Years of Science Fiction - yes, that makes sense as the vol 5 story that's missing is The Iron Standard was also missing from the vol 5 publication I already deleted. With that in mind I deleted this record. Either this was a data import or at one time someone had constructed The Golden Years of Science Fiction: Third Series as an omnibus of the two "abridged" titles and somehow those abridged publications ended up under the same title record as the standard edition. I deleted GRTSFS61982.
This The Golden Years of Science Fiction stuff must also explain the other extra partial publications in the The Great SF Stories series. Marc Kupper (talk) 22:39, 16 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I removed my Verification, as I have been doing with all of my verifications from earlier then May of this year. I added the CoverArt Credit, and changed the date. I cannot read the ISBN on my copy, but I changed it to the one you asked about, since you seem to imply that that should be the correct one. I currently have #'s 1, 6, 7, 9, 12, 13, 17, 21, and 22, with all but three of the remaining volumes on order. I'll go through all of them as I ge them. I've been currently working on #1 since I got it yesterday. CoachPaul 23:31, 16 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I don't think removing the verification for THGRSTRS0F1981 was needed but please take a look at THGRSTRS011981 to see if the data shown matches your publication. If you can confirm everything but the ISBN then we'll move the image over to THGRSTRS0F1981 and you can mark that as verified again because if you have a 1st printing with UE1670 / No. 461 / $2.95 on the front cover then the spine has 0-87997-670-5   295. I just don't have time these days to do an item by item verification against my copy. If you were not able to get vols 3 or 5 then please let me know and I'll verify those when I get a chance. Marc Kupper (talk) 15:28, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I have #s 4 - 11, & #17, if that helps. Re #6: I haven't checked the contents info. in detail, but otherwise, my #6 matches the proposed merged publ., though I add that the title page on mine states "Isaac Asimov Presents: The Great Science Fiction Stories: Volume 6, 1944" (converted to title case & colons inserted) j_clark 04:18, 22 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Shortfiction Series Question

I moved a number of Eric_Brown's short stories under a new series title but they don't show up in his summary bibliograph. The series is there "Kéthani Stories" just not were i thought it would be.Kraang 19:32, 19 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Shortfiction is no longer listed in series by themselves. If you have a single novel (or collection) in the series then the SF shows up. As an example, I added this title record 629713 which I made a variant title of itself to hide it from the bibliography and now the series information shows. This is a hack that abuses two bugs in ISFDB but at least you know why the series was not listed before. Marc Kupper (talk) 22:59, 19 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Incidentally, I found a new use for series recently. See this pub where a Short Story had been chopped into even shorter ones. I didn't want to lose all the data someone had entered, but as we don't have any subdivision of "page" I created this series. BLongley 13:27, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
That looks pretty cool - the existing pub note confused me a little (particularly as ISFDB did not display the items on page 121 in the correct order. Does this make sense to you?
Pages 121 to 131 has a short story, Heavens Below: Fifteen Utopias, that is divided into fifteen named vignettes. Each of the vignettes are included in this ISFDB record and collected into a series as a way to bundle them together.
Marc Kupper (talk) 15:31, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Using a decimal place on the pages where there is more then one title would help keep them in the correct order, and a short note to that effect would clear up any confusion as to why there was a page 121.1 and 121.2 and 121.3. CoachPaul 15:39, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Unfortunately page sorting doesn't work like that. :-/ See this test pub. BLongley 15:53, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Odd - I'll have to look at the sorting code as I cloned the pub and my crack at sorting also failed. 200653 Marc Kupper (talk) 03:21, 22 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Parker & Parker

Ok how to handle double authors? Not credited separately.

FYI Scott Parker and Elanie Parker.
FYI there already is a Parker for a interior artist.Ray 13:17, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
If you know which Parkers they are, just add them both as separate authors - the order doesn't matter. E.g. "Isaac Asimov and Janet Asimov" is the same as "Janet Asimov and Isaac Asimov", see this series for example. If you DON'T know the Parker, but are sure it's not the same as the current interior artist, then add something to distinguish between the two and add lots of notes. We've used "(US)" and "(UK)" suffixes for some "Steve Jackson"s for instance. If you don't know even that, just a "[1]" or [2]" will do for the moment. BLongley 14:50, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
My point was line from somewhere saying "document the author as it appears in the publication"? It took some digging to find the first names. Would it be ok on this book just to add the correct author names or create two extra psuedonyms like "Parker (Scott)" and "Parker (Eliane)" pointing to the real names? Ray 17:03, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)
We regularise Author names anyway, they're not always EXACTLY as on title page: and there's precedents for distinguishing identically named authors too. I'd say add the correct author names, congratulate yourself on some good researching, and add notes to say what the exact credit was on the pub, and where you sleuthed their true identities from. NOBODY escapes the ISFDB inquisition! ;-) BLongley 17:41, 20 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Removing a pub from a title without deleting the pub

Added Universe magazines with dual editors - one of whom had a pseudonym and the database deciding in which order they appeared in the EDITOR records. In attempting to merge the mags I ended up with dual titles pointed to the same pub. Is there a way to detach title records from pubs without deleting pubs?--swfritter 11:43, 21 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I took a look at the edits you did recently and can't find the problem, so I probably don't understand what you are asking, however I had a problem recently that might be the problem that you are now having. On mhutchins talk page under the listing Galaxy Magazine Problem, and the next one too, were two problems the solutions of which might be able to help you with yours. If not, sorry I couldn't help. CoachPaul 13:02, 21 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Not the same problem. On the Raymond A. Palmer page I have taken the November 1954 issue out of the EDITOR title merge. So now there are two EDITOR title entries for that same title, one with a record number of 630757 and the other with a record number of 630817.--swfritter 16:33, 21 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Both or those Editor Records are publicationless. Can't you just delete them as neither points to a pub? Or you could merge them into the Editor Record for Universe Science Fiction - 1954. Seems to me like either would work. CoachPaul 17:31, 21 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I did not quite follow this but is it fixed? To answer the original question - I believe you can just remove-title the editor records. BTW, something that would help when discussing a specific issue is to link to the actual records. From the wiki use {{t|####}} or {{p|####}} to link to a title or publication by record number. You can link authors using {{a|author_name}} but note that spaces need to be replaced with underscores. Marc Kupper (talk) 03:16, 22 Jun 2007 (CDT)

K.H. McMullan / Kate McMullan Dragon Slayers' Academy Series

I'm trying figure out how to "merge" the 2 lists of titles in the Dragon Slayer's Academy series into the one series. The early ones are under K.H. McMullan [1]; some later ones are under Kate McMullan [2]. I tried to make K.H. McMullan a pseudonym of Kate - this shows under my "recent edits" as having been accepted, though all that seems to have happened is "Used As Alternate Names" has been set (& might have been set already?).

It's further complicated in that the early titles of the series were originally published as by K.H., but have been reprinted as by Kate. (I think the "with Bill Basso" means that Bill Basso illustrated the reprints. My copy of one of the K.H. ones has no mention of Basso, but does have illustrations (by someone else))

My feeling is that Kate McMullan should be the canonical name.

What's the best approach for all this? j_clark 07:14, 22 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I agree that Kate should be canonical as that is the way she now has books attributed to her, and there are more of them taht way too. At our house we have the newer copies of 1-11 on our shelf, so I will help out. I will do Book 1, and while doing it, tell you how I am doing it, and then when you read this, you can try Book 2 and let me know if you understand.
1. On the K. H. McMullan page, open up the entry for "Revenge of the Dragon Lady".
2. Down the left hand side of the page, click on "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work".
3. Near the bottom of this new page change "K. H. McMullan" to "Kate McMullan". Then click "Submit Data".
4. Once this has been approved by a Mod, it will disappear from the K.H. McMullan Page, and reappear on the Kate McMullan Page.
You have to do this for each Title in the series.
My copies of 1-11 are all either the 2003 reprints or for those not published befoer 2003, first printings. All of them are pulished by "Groset & Dunlap", and all follow the following format on the Title Page. They say "Dragon Slayer's Academy" across the top of the page in an unfurled scroll and then have the number of the book in the series. Below that it has the name of the book, ie. "The New Kid at School". Then on the reprints there is an illustration of a dagger. On the books that were first printed in 2003 or later there is no dagger here, just a blank space. Under that they say "By Kate McMillan". Below that "Illustrated by Bill Basso. Finally at the bottom of the page it says "Grosset & Dunlap". None of them claim that both McMullan and Basso are the authors or way with Basso. Do you have books that actually say this, or was it already in the database?
As for the two series, you can't merge series, nor at this time, can we remove them. We can rename them however, and we can remove and add books to them. I have renamed the series with the Kate McMullan books in them, as there seems to be some sort of problem there. The three books in that series need to be removed from that series, and put into what is now the only series named "Dragon Slayers' Academy".
None of these changes will take place before they have been approved by a Mod, so until my edits have been approved, they will still look like they always have.
I can help more later, but have to get back to work for now. CoachPaul 09:22, 22 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I've been to, and had a peek inside the books in the series I didn't have, and every one of them on the Title Page says "By Kate McMullan Illustrated by Bill Basso", to the entries in the db that say "by Kate McMullan With Bill Basso" appear to be wrong, although it is possible that the hb edition of the book Published by Turtleback had it that way. I think though that listing the books as having Bill Basso as an aditional author was grabbed off of an search page. My thoughts are to remove Bill Basso as an author from all of the books as an author, and to give him CoverArt and InteriorArt credit instead. If you, or anybody else reading this, has reason to believe that he should retain credit as Author though, I would be happy to change my mind. CoachPaul 07:54, 23 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Chances are that it was Dissembler that grabbed the data from and stuffed Bill Basso in the wrong field. However, this does raise an interesting question. Some children's books and graphic novels elevate the illustrator to the rank of co-author even when it's clear that his/her contributions were limited to the art. Probably something to discuss on the Standards page. Ahasuerus 10:47, 23 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The Rhianna Chronicles by Dave Luckett

The series looks great here at the Luckett Bibliography page, but looks all messed up here on The Rhianna Chronicles Bibliography page. Why do they look so different, and was it something I did, or didn't do, or is this one of the known problems with the db? CoachPaul 22:23, 23 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The program that displays Summary bibliographies is our most advanced display program that knows how to handle series, pseudonyms, variant titles, etc. Al's plan (before he got sidetracked with the move) was to get this program to work exactly the way we want it and then use it as a template to update all other programs to behave similarly. The program that displays Series bibliographies is far behind and doesn't handle Variant Titles well, so it just displays all titles together, sorted by series number. Since books in this series have series name and number specified both in the parent title and in the variant title, we end up with both master titles and variant titles displayed.
The only way to make the Series display program "behave" is to remove the Series name and number from the affected variant title records. It won't make any difference on the Summary page since all VTs are displayed under their respective parent titles, but it will help solve the immediate problem on the Series page. Not pretty -- and hopefully it will be fixed once Al is done moving to Austin and catching his breath -- but it gets the job done for now. Ahasuerus 23:31, 23 Jun 2007 (CDT)

T. R. Fehrenbach - Summary Bibliography

There is something terribly wrong with this page. OK, maybe the "doom and gloom" sound of that is a little much, but I have no idea what to do there. Everything has been pushed way to the bottom of the page. You have to scroll WAY down to find any information. If someone could please check it out and let me know how to fix it.. CoachPaul 19:44, 26 Jun 2007 (CDT)

The page renders fine in Firefox, but it seems to confuse Internet Explorer 6. Something to do with the extra long "Webpage" URL, perhaps? Ahasuerus 20:03, 26 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I have to scroll down so far to find the information on the page that I want to print "SPOILERS" across the top of the page! CoachPaul 21:48, 26 Jun 2007 (CDT)
It is the "Webpage" URL. When I close the Favorites sidebar in IE 7 the page is wide enough for the URL to fit and everything moves up to the top of the page.--swfritter 11:20, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)
Does anybody have a problem then with using TINYURL to make it shorter? CoachPaul 11:53, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)
I've no problem with TinyURL, I've been using it for years in various places and think it's a stable enough site. But actually reading the site at the Long URL makes me think it's not worth keeping anyway, it only deals with his Non-Genre/Non-Fiction stuff. So I'd suggest finding a more SF-related site instead first. BLongley 16:57, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Gollancz vs. VGSF

I have a book in front of me whose publication record contains Gollancz as the publisher. The book, however, has written VGSF all over it, only the verso of the title page mentions that VGSF is an imprint of Gollancz. I think that VGSF would be a better choice than Gollancz, but since I am totally new to ISFDB I am not (yet) confident enough to change this piece of data. Any comments on which one is the better would be welcome. Herzbube 16:50, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

If in doubt, "VGSF, an imprint of Gollancz" or "VGSF, an imprint of Victor Gollancz" would be fine. It contains all the relevant information, and more that may be useful. I'd say ADDING more data is always good here, even if it gives us a headache in using it later. BLongley 17:26, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Note: The EditPub help page seems to support VGSF ("Imprints are often a suitable choice"), but the current owner of Gollancz, the Orion Publishing Group, nowhere mentions VGSF on its SF&F web page. Herzbube 16:50, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

And that's why I think it's our duty to record imprints at least, and publishers too (even if they're gone/assimilated now), or they'll be lost: someone here has already noticed that Amazon are attributing publications to the current imprint owners long after the book has actually gone out of print. (Working backwards from the huge accumulations of ISBN prefixes maybe?) I keep meaning to analyse what we currently have in the "publisher" field - if only because printing numbers carry over imprints at times, e.g. "Granada" and "Grafton" and occasionally "Panther", and if our goal of "Every printing of every SF book" is to be accomplished we'll need to know whether we're missing a few printings by one imprint or whether they were published under another one. The current Publishing Company is rarely very helpful in that. :-( Still, an analysis of what we have verified, plus an analysis of what we have that has been recorded but not verified, and a few other sources, should lead to a good starting point. We might even be able to build in a few checks on new entries that say, for instance, that an "0330" prefix ISBN with a publisher of "DAW" isn't likely to be correct - even if we can't say that for sure it was a "Piccolo" edition rather than a "Pan" one. BLongley 17:26, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Stupid mistake on "Three Against the Witch World"

This is so embarassing... I just noticed that I made an extremely stupid mistake: I added a new publication of the title Three Against the Witch World, but it should have been a publication of the title Year of the Unicorn. If a moderator sees this comment: can you please modify the entry in the submission queue? Or if it's easier, just kill the entry and I will re-enter the data. Thanks. (I think I will now go to bed - it's 1am and it seems as if my mind is already asleep; after all I don't want to endanger my future ISFDB career by making more silly mistakes :-) Herzbube 18:15, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)

I held two of your submissions just to make sure: one's probably unnecessary but Mods aren't infallible either!
659473 	ON HOLD (BLongley) 	NewPub 	2007-06-27 17:20:18 	Herzbube 	Three Against the Witch World
659481 	ON HOLD (BLongley) 	NewPub 	2007-06-27 17:33:11 	Herzbube 	Warlock of the Witch World
Let me know what you meant to do and I'll fix it tomorrow - I need to sleep too. (I'm only one time-zone behind you.)
And don't be too embarrassed - one of my early edits merged a short-fiction title with a collection, it got approved, and even after a Mod or two worked on it for ages I'm still afraid to go near a Henry Kuttner title. One "new pub" error will be easy to fix in comparison! BLongley 18:32, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)
"Warlock of the Witch World" is OK, I definitely have a new publication there.
The "Three Against the Witch World" submission can be cancelled/rejected/discarded/nuked/...
Herzbube 19:55, 27 Jun 2007 (CDT)
OK, done. BLongley 13:22, 28 Jun 2007 (CDT)

Imperial Stars

I've put this on hold becauce twice i've changed the Year and Notes field and the Author field also displays a change. Any ideas why the Author field would show a change? Kraang 12:08, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)

It's the quotes that confuse the software. The same thing happens in the Notes field and possibly other fields, but it's just a display issue, so nothing to worry about. We do have an editing bug in one or two fields where an attempt to edit a title or an author with embedded quotes will result in loss of any data to the right of the quotes, though. Ahasuerus 12:22, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Amazing Stories

Both this Title Editor record and this other Title Editor Record contain this same pub of Fantastic. How can I get rid of the first Editor Record without deleting the Pub? CoachPaul 14:31, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)

The second record (which I just deleted) was an ESSAY record. I went to the Magazine record, chose "Drop Titles", deleted the ESSAY pub record, then deleted the ESSAY title record. Everything looks OK now. Mhhutchins 18:01, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)

I made the second record an Essay because I know that that is how you delete a Title Editor Record. When you say "Drop Titles" I don't see that option on the page. CoachPaul 18:50, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Sorry, I meant "Remove Titles from This Pub", but that's only from the magazine's pub record page, not the title record or editor record pages. Mhhutchins 18:54, 1 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Two Identical Pubs in one Editor Record

I still don't get how to fix this, several mods have tried to help me learn, and have been able to fix the problem, but I can't figure it out. Here is the Editor Record. Both of the pubs in it are the same pub. If I delete one, they both dissapear. If I unmerge one, it creates a new Editor record. If I unmerge both, two new editor records are created. Attempting to delete either one of them deletes both. (They are the same record.) Merging the title editors back together again brings us back to this. I tried unmerging one, then changing the new editor record to an Essay, but I still can't remove the essay record because it contains a link to a pub. How do I get this pub to appear once, in only one Editor Record without having to delete it, and reenter all of the data? CoachPaul 17:06, 3 Jul 2007 (CDT)

When the same title record is reference twice (or more) in a publication then remove-title deletes all of the references. The only fix is to remove-title, add-title, and to merge the new record that was created by add-title with the original you had removed.
The only data that needs to be re-entered is the title record. Also, in this case you have an editor record for an anthology and no parent title record. That's ok but the remove-title will complain.
  1. change the title from EDITOR to ESSAY. I did this as ISFDB hides EDITOR records.
  2. Approve the title edit
  3. From the pub TSTVLCHDFH1999 do a remove-title.
  4. Select both instances of the duplicate as we want to make sure we remove both pub-title connection things. (it's the little thing that hold the a number and links a title and publication together)
  5. Approve
  6. Do the edit-pub and add a title record back. You could leave a copy of the title up on the screen from step 1 to copy/paste. You might as we'll also add a type-Anthology title record at the same time to create the parent record.
  7. Approve Marc Kupper (talk) 23:27, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Thank you very much! I think I've got it now, and if not, I can always refer back to this. CoachPaul 00:06, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)

A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah!

With the exception of the publication date, all the details of this pub record exactly match a book I have in front of me. The pub record states 1972 as the date, but inside my book it states "First NEL paperback edition October 1976". My book also states "First published in Great Britain by Faber and Faber 1972". BTW: No printing line is present.

If the information in my book can be trusted, I suspect that the pub record has a wrong publication date: It has the date of the "Faber and Faber" edition (1972), but the correct date should be 1976 (the date of the first NEL paperback edition). The information on this FantasticFiction page seems to support my suspicion as it lists the first NEL edition to be from October 1976. I have made no other research, though.

Now the questions:

  1. Do you think I should correct the pub record? If not, what is the correct action to take?
  2. The publication's title record contains the publishing information I cited above in its note field. Is this the right place for this sort of information? Shouldn't this be part of a pub record?

Herzbube 17:35, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)

My research agrees that the NEL edition should have a 1976 publication date. Go ahead and make the change and I'll approve it. As for the note in the title record, it's OK (though superfluous) because it provides info on more than one pub. Mhhutchins 19:14, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)
I made the changes, I think it was probably my mistake in the first place. :-/ All the data looks as if it came from my October 1976 printing (less Month of Publication and cover artist, so I'm not SURE it's my mistake): and the real giveaway is that the introduction is actually a review of the book from The Spectator - which is hardly likely to be included in a FIRST printing. BLongley 13:24, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)
I have checked the main OCLC/WorldCat catalog and added a bunch of publications. Might as well use the full FirstSearch interface while it's available for free :)
Faber and Faber was apparently the first UK hardcover edition published the same year (1972) as the original US edition. As far as the Notes fields go, we have two of them. The one that Michael refers to above is Title-specific and covers all associated Publications. It's a good place to warn users that, e.g., Murray Leinster's Time Tunnel is not to be confused with his The Time Tunnel. The other Notes field exists at the Publication level and is the perfect place to enter additional information about the Publication in question, including the printing number and the source of your data. Ahasuerus 22:38, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)
There's actually a good case for other levels of notes. By country maybe: a helpful British publishing company will list all the prior printings across several imprints, and will even acknowledge other companies, e.g. a paperback publisher usually credits the hardcover publisher even if there's no company connection. Sometimes they'll mention the original foreign publisher. Still, most of such data can be entered by creating any missing "stub" publications and notes in the publications when printing numbers are carried over from one imprint to another - in these days, usually via a takeover rather than a different brand from the same publisher. I've been loath to do that so far for anything bar the smallest number of reprintings as it hastens the day when we have to figure out how best to display books that have been published hundreds of times in several countries under several imprints by several publishers that are now amalgamated into a few publishing companies. :-( BLongley 13:24, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Oh, and Ahasuerus, I couldn't remove the page number from the erroneous 1972 publication (you can submit it and approve it but it doesn't do anything), so I adjusted yours. Nothing major - I just adjusted "Faber" back to "Faber and Faber". I know there was only one Faber really (Geoffrey), but I don't want confusion with "Faber and Gwyer" at some point. ;-) BLongley 13:24, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)
No worries, "Faber" had come from OCLC, which may have been in error. Ahasuerus 23:57, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Cloned lives aren't

This title record has some interesting problems extending into the pub records. I have a copy of the Fawcett edition (first of the pubs). The copyright page clearly states that this is a NOVEL not a Collection. The page also states that the book has seven chapters, not the three stories listed in the first publication record. The copyright info states that the three stories are included as part of the novel and appeared elsewhere.

The question is: Is there any SIMPLE way to fix this? Does the title record (and thus the four pub records) have to be deleted and recreated? I hope this isn't what I expect. --Dsorgen 22:42, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)

I am 95% sure that the "Collection" designation comes from Contento, who frequently describes fixups as collections even when constituent stories have been rewritten and massaged.
I believe the only way to convert the 4 affected publications to "novels" (that doesn't involve deletion and re-entry) is to use "Remove Titles from This Pub" on all Publications, then change the Title record to Novel, then change the 4 Publication records to Novels. Ahasuerus 23:05, 5 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Of course, if those 7 chapters divide neatly up into the 3 stories it might be best kept that way. :-/ "Fix-up" versus "collection" is one of those thorny issues that keep cropping up here - OK, often because I butt in and give MY opinion. ;-) Which is roughly that a "novel" with short stories published elsewhere that CAN be defined in simple terms - at worst a set of consecutive chapters, and no significant other material - should be a collection. Basically because I'd be annoyed if I bought a novelization of some connected short stories and discovered I had all the good content already. It's a sliding scale though: consider these examples.

Foundation Lost Dorsai The Spirit of Dorsai Planets for Sale Empire of the Atom Rogue Ship

One of the major problems is that distinguishing them actually at times requires READING them . :-( BLongley 14:00, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Argh... Well, the book says "...appeared in substantially different form elsewhere..."{emphasis added}. So, I guess I'll go with the copyright page's hint (especially since I'll be doing the work) and convert this thing to a novel. And so it goes.
--Dsorgen 23:44, 6 Jul 2007 (CDT)

That's fine - notes in the title about the stories used are almost as useful as content title entries, all you lose is the quick links. It's best to decide early on though, as you can see it's a pain to change later. :-/ BLongley

Cloned Robots - Maybe

I have a Jan 74 Warner PB edition of Eando Binder's Adam Link - Robot. This version appears to vary significantly from the existing pubs with the exception of the length (still 174pgs). The primary difference is the contents page and (probably) the copyright page. The contents page list 21 chapters and an epilogue. There is no reference to the handful of stories either on that page or the copyright page (prior pubs). The question under consideration is: what do I do with this? It's a novel, not a collection (at least by appearances) but it matches the other characteristics of the original. There's no statement that the contents have been revised or otherwise "combined" in some way. The references to the short stories have simply disappeared.

--Dsorgen 23:20, 7 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Chances are that this is yet another case of the ISFDB data following Contento's lead -- see this Contento entry. Contento's emphasis was on preserving the link between the original (often magazine era) stories and the books that were based on them, so he typically listed the stories that fixups were built from. Also, some of his data had come from Tuck's Encyclopedia rather than from primary sources and Tuck wasn't always specific about series/fixup data. Ahasuerus 23:40, 7 Jul 2007 (CDT)
OK, that's simple enough. I guess the decision is: create a "new" book, or; revise the old entries and add the one in hand. Is there a consensus among ISFDB editors on the direction this should go? I've already had to revise another book; so, I know how to do this.

--Dsorgen 13:44, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)

As the existing pub isn't verified: I'd copy the current Contents list to the title page Notes, with a comment that Contento is the source, change the type to "Novel" then add my version as a Novel as well, with notes at the pub level as well. We don't have a consensus here, but a title-type mismatch warning on the existing pub might make the next editor think about it a little more. Maybe they'll point out that chapters 4-6 match one story exactly, 7-9 another, or something like that. So long as data doesn't disappear unless proven wrong, either way is fine by me. I don't tend to mess with existing pubs much, but I'm happy to make a potential verifier think about it a bit more closely than usual. So maybe I'd add a note to a potential verifier on the existing one too. BLongley 14:30, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Discussion continued here. CoachPaul 11:59, 9 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Omnibus paging dilemma

I'm interested in working on this omnibus Blish's The Seedling Stars/Galactic Cluster. Both items are collections in themselves. Since they're separately paginated, it makes entering the page numbers for the contents' contents (that's not a redundancy) problematic if not impossible. Can this be done properly? How?

--Dsorgen 12:53, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)

You can certainly add page-numbers that make it clear which is which, e.g. "TSS1" versus "GC1", but whether they'll SORT intuitively is another matter. :( It seems we don't understand the sort algorithm yet, see the end of this discussion. Feel free to try it though! (Or ask Marc if he's solved it yet.) BLongley 14:06, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)
The program will sort roman numerals in order on their own and the page numbers seperately. Here's an example of a test sort with a note that explains the roman numeral and the relationship to the corresponding arabic number. This way you do one book in roman numerals and the other book in arabic numbers and leave an explanation in the notes section.[3] It not a perfect solution but it works. I'll do an Ace Double that contains a collection and leave it as an example later today or tomorrow.Kraang 15:53, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Does anyone know of an Ace Double that contains two collections? I seem to have only Novel/Novel or Novel/Collection.Kraang 19:06, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)
VERY creative solution there, well done! BLongley 17:12, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)
That is creative and I used exactly that method to deal with a pub last night that was a dos-a-dos of a novel and collection plus added a pub note that explained why that the novel started on page 5 but was being recorded as v. I have a dos-a-dos collection/collection but can't recall how I entered it into ISFDB and can't remember the name. Marc Kupper (talk) 01:13, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Wonderful Characters From Edit Pages

I found these and I figured that this was as good a place as any to put them. If anybody knows of a better place to put them, feel free. I got them from going to one of their Edit pages. If somebody has the characters loaded that show up here as boxes, please add them. My browser apparantly hasn't got all the charactrer sets yet.

Symbols: ~ | ¡ ¿ † ‡ ↔ ↑ ↓ • ¶ # ¹ ² ³ ½ ⅓ ⅔ ¼ ¾ ⅛ ⅜ ⅝ ⅞ ∞ ‘ “ ’ ” ¤ ₳ ฿ ₵ ¢ ₡ ₢ $ ₫ ₯ € ₠ ₣ ƒ ₴ ₭ ₤ ℳ ₥ ₦ ₧ ₰ £ ៛ ₨ ₪ ৳ ₮ ₩ ¥ ♠ ♣ ♥ ♦

Characters: Á á Ć ć É é Í í Ĺ ĺ Ń ń Ó ó Ŕ ŕ Ś ś Ú ú Ý ý Ź ź À à È è Ì ì Ò ò Ù ù  â Ĉ ĉ Ê ê Ĝ ĝ Ĥ ĥ Î î Ĵ ĵ Ô ô Ŝ ŝ Û û Ŵ ŵ Ŷ ŷ Ä ä Ë ë Ï ï Ö ö Ü ü Ÿ ÿ ß Ã ã Ẽ ẽ Ĩ ĩ Ñ ñ Õ õ Ũ ũ Ỹ ỹ Ç ç Ģ ģ Ķ ķ Ļ ļ Ņ ņ Ŗ ŗ Ş ş Ţ ţ Đ đ Ů ů Ǎ ǎ Č č Ď ď Ě ě Ǐ ǐ Ľ ľ Ň ň Ǒ ǒ Ř ř Š š Ť ť Ǔ ǔ Ž ž Ā ā Ē ē Ī ī Ō ō Ū ū Ȳ ȳ Ǣ ǣ ǖ ǘ ǚ ǜ Ă ă Ĕ ĕ Ğ ğ Ĭ ĭ Ŏ ŏ Ŭ ŭ Ċ ċ Ė ė Ġ ġ İ ı Ż ż Ą ą Ę ę Į į Ǫ ǫ Ų ų Ḍ ḍ Ḥ ḥ Ḷ ḷ Ḹ ḹ Ṃ ṃ Ṇ ṇ Ṛ ṛ Ṝ ṝ Ṣ ṣ Ṭ ṭ Ł ł Ő ő Ű ű Ŀ ŀ Ħ ħ Ð ð Þ þ Œ œ Æ æ Ø ø Å å Ə ə •

Greek: Ά ά Έ έ Ή ή Ί ί Ό ό Ύ ύ Ώ ώ Α α Β β Γ γ Δ δ Ε ε Ζ ζ Η η Θ θ Ι ι Κ κ Λ λ Μ μ Ν ν Ξ ξ Ο ο Π π Ρ ρ Σ σ ς Τ τ Υ υ Φ φ Χ χ Ψ ψ Ω ω •

Cyrillic: А а Б б В в Г г Ґ ґ Ѓ ѓ Д д Ђ ђ Е е Ё ё Є є Ж ж З з Ѕ ѕ И и І і Ї ї Й й Ј ј К к Ќ ќ Л л Љ љ М м Н н Њ њ О о П п Р р С с Т т Ћ ћ У у Ў ў Ф ф Х х Ц ц Ч ч Џ џ Ш ш Щ щ Ъ ъ Ы ы Ь ь Э э Ю ю Я я

CoachPaul 17:18, 8 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Firefox shows the list of characters much better than Internet Explorer. As for the best place to put this? Presumably the upgrade to MediaWiki 1.10 is "real soon now" meaning we will then be able to use MediaWiki:Edittools to customize the edit page. See [4] for wikipedia's version. Marc Kupper (talk) 03:05, 13 Jul 2007 (CDT)

DAW Reprints Dates?

Is there a good website where I might be able to find out when DAW books had their Second or higher printings? I've got a second printing with no date except the date for the first printing, and the DAW books are pretty well documented. CoachPaul 16:48, 11 Jul 2007 (CDT)

See ISFDB:Verification_requests#Interstellar_Empire_by_John_Brunner
Printing # support is sorely needed for DAW as they have never stated the later printing dates. With individual publications I can determine a best-guess date but what I have been doing instead is a real hack which is I set the ISFDB date to the date of the first printing and then put the printing # in the day of the month. This works for most DAW books which have under 30 printings and at least gets the publications sorted in the correct order for DAW/vs/DAW but is obviously false data in all of YYYY-MM-DD.
If someone shows up with years and years of DAW catalogs I will happily enter in all of the data so that we will have the reprint printing dates. Marc Kupper (talk) 02:29, 13 Jul 2007 (CDT)
I've done a whole lot of work on The Great SF Stroies Series by Asimov and Greenberg the last week. Will I need to change the spreadsheet myself, or is there an automated way that Excell can get the information from the db? CoachPaul 07:33, 13 Jul 2007 (CDT)
There's no automated way top update the spreadsheet at the moment but one of the first things I'll do once I get a working copy of ISFDB up is to scrap that spreadsheet and to make it database driven. Right now dealing with new DAW Books to my collection is a hassle as I'm adding/updating three places (the DAW list spreadsheet, my personal book list/spreadsheet, and ISFDB). Triple entry and synchronization is a pain and I want to at least merge the DAW list into ISFDB's database. Marc Kupper (talk) 01:09, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Excel CAN get data from a MySQL instance of a backup of the database via an ODBC connection, but the backups are a bit out of date - e.g. there's only 2220 Daw pubs in the last one I have. It's theoretically capable of getting data straight from a web-site too, but I've never tried that - it looks as if it depends on the URLs being complete in themselves and the results coming back in tables, so we'd probably not get much use out of it unless there's some extra scripts available that return tabular data rather than stuff formatted for display. BLongley 12:26, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Splatterpunks II

Something strange occurred when I updated (here) this pub. I hope I don't have to enter the contents again. What happened? Mhhutchins 19:13, 15 Jul 2007 (CDT) I just checked to see if the contents showed up on the various authors' summary pages, and they did -- twice!! But they all refer back to this strange looking page (Python error?). Mhhutchins 19:17, 15 Jul 2007 (CDT) I resubmitted another update (didn't have to enter the contents again) and it cleared up. Mhhutchins 19:22, 15 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Useful Pricing Info... or Not?

I've noticed several moderators seem to instinctively know what a typical price of a typical US publication is for a given year: I don't, as almost all my US publications were bought second-hand and my feel of "typical price" is far different. Still, I thought that problem should be solvable from a reliable source and a bit of SQL. So I gave it a go: here's what the ISFDB (as of last backup) says are common prices for US paperbacks for a given year:

1973 1.25
1974 1.25
1975 1.25 1.50 1.75 1.95
1976 1.50 1.25 1.75 1.95
1977 1.50 1.95 1.75
1978 1.95 1.75 1.50
1979 1.95 2.25 1.75
1980 2.25 1.95 2.50
1981 2.50 2.25 2.75 2.95
1982 2.25 2.95 2.50 2.75
1983 2.95 2.50 2.75
1984 2.95 2.50 2.75
1985 2.95 3.50 2.75 3.95
1986 2.95 3.50 3.95 5.99
1987 3.50 2.95 3.95 6.99 4.5
1988 3.50 3.95 2.95
1989 3.95 4.95 4.50 3.5 5.95
1990 3.95 4.95 4.50 3.5
1991 4.95 4.99 4.50 3.95 5.99
1992 5.99 4.99 4.50 3.99
1993 4.99 5.99
1994 5.99 4.99
1995 5.99 5.50 4.99
1996 5.99
1997 5.99
1998 5.99 6.99 6.50
1999 6.99
2000 6.99 6.95
2001 6.99 7.99
2002 6.99 7.99
2003 6.99 7.99
2004 7.99 6.99
2005 7.99 6.99
2006 7.99 6.99

I limited it to at least 5 verified pubs to count as significant, and the most popular price for that year is the leftmost, the least popular (but still commonly-used) is the rightmost. Before I suggest that this is realistic and useful as a guideline, would the US readers please see if it agrees with their perceptions? BLongley 14:30, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Yes, that looks about right. There are always outliers, e.g. mmpb novellas or promotional "$1.99!!!" books, but overall the list looks reasonably accurate and can serve as a useful cheat sheet. Thanks! :) Ahasuerus 14:48, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Thanks for the rapid feedback! I suspect the above might be distorted by some Canadian printings, but I can only go by the data we have. Anyway, for the UK readers, does this list feel right? BLongley 15:00, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)

1979 1.25
1980 1.25
1981 1.25 1.50
1982 1.25 1.50
1983 1.50 1.95
1984 1.50 1.95 1.75 1.35
1985 1.95 1.50 2.50
1986 2.50 2.95 1.95 1.60
1987 2.50 2.95 1.95 3.50
1988 3.50 2.95 2.99 3.99 1.99 2.50
1989 3.50 2.99 3.99 1.99
1990 3.99 3.50 4.99 2.99 2.50
1991 3.99 4.50 3.50 4.99
1992 4.99 3.99
1993 4.99 3.99 5.99 4.50
1994 4.99 5.99
1995 4.99 5.99
1996 4.99 5.99
1997 5.99 6.99 4.99
1998 5.99 6.99
1999 5.99
2000 6.99 5.99
2001 6.99 5.99
2002 6.99
2003 6.99
2004 6.99
2005 6.99
2006 6.99
2004 7.99
2005 7.99

It seems the UK list is more consistent in the constant inflation, but I still hate the fact that in this world of supposedly global trade that books have a $1 = £1 exchange rate whereas I can actually buy US dollars at half that price. :-( BLongley 15:00, 17 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Creating Editor Titles

The Two Complete Science-Adventure titles I updated did not have EDITOR titles. This issue is discussed in ISFDB biblio projects but I don't find any information on adding records manually nor on resolving stray publications issues.--swfritter 11:54, 18 Jul 2007 (CDT)

At the moment, we just add EDITOR Titles manually and then merge them with any pre-existing EDITOR records for the same person/year. I don't recall if we ever copied the writeup that I did a while back from Mike Christie's User page to a more permanent place. If not, it may be a good idea.
The real challenge is deleting/removing EDITOR records, e.g. when deleting a duplicate EDITOR Title or when converting a Magazine to an Anthology, since you can't Remote an EDITOR Title from a Magazine. You have to change the erroneous EDITOR Title to some other Title type, e.g. an ESSAY, then remove it from the Publication. Once the Title has been dissociated from the Publication, you can either delete the Title or, if it is still used in other Magazine Publications, change it back to EDITOR.
The reason the process is so convoluted at the moment is because the software tries to prevent ISFDB editors from accidentally Removing "core" title records from Publications records. For example, it won't let you Remove Collection Titles from Collection Publications, Anthology Titles from Anthology Publications, etc. Although well-intentioned, these limitations are generally counter-productive since we do run into cases when these operations are legitimate. Hopefully, once Al is back, he will remove these checks from the Removal logic. Ahasuerus 12:14, 18 Jul 2007 (CDT)
OK, got it and added the EDITOR records. At least I got to brush up on my SQL as I figured out what data was going where. Who would have thought that magazines with only two stories and an editor could be so much fun.--swfritter 14:42, 18 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Python Error

Does anyone else get a Python error on this page? BLongley 08:55, 20 Jul 2007 (CDT)

I see it as well. grendel|khan 11:52, 20 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Here's another page with a Python error. Anyone know how to fix it? Mhhutchins 16:23, 21 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Well, the one obvious thing those two pages have in common is a reviewer that's a pseudonym. But that isn't always enough: e.g. it works here. BLongley 19:40, 21 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Sorted! In both cases, there were duplicate reviews by the same reviewer: Algis Budrys for one, Henry Bott for the other. Once the reviews were merged the Python errors went away. (Tip: Advanced search for that Title, Ttype=REVIEW.) BLongley 07:15, 22 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Another here. :-/ Possibly due to this useless title. I suspect some recent changes to the way review columns in certain magazines are recorded is causing this problem: can anyone that's approved suchlike comment? BLongley 18:22, 28 Jul 2007 (CDT)
There's a whole series of title pages that have been affected by the same bunch of reviews by Algis Budrys in Galaxy, February 1970:

There's a temp note on the record for that issue about deleting pages from the book reviews. I know Alibrarian has been working on Galaxy for awhile now. I'll do some snooping around and see what I can find. Mhhutchins 20:23, 28 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Sherlock Holmes to the rescue. The reviewer was changed from Algis Budrys to A. J. Budrys and the original titles were not deleted. I'll try deleting one to see if it works. Mhhutchins 20:37, 28 Jul 2007 (CDT)
That seems to have done the trick. If we don't know what's causing this error, at least we know how to repair it. Mhhutchins 20:39, 28 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Good job, Mr. Holmes! Or was it his counterpart Mr. Pons, who has been known to take sfnal cases? :)
We may want to add this note to the Help pages until the underlying software problem has been fixed. Ahasuerus 21:00, 28 Jul 2007 (CDT)

I want to make the initial publication of a story a variant title.

The short story Green Patches (55216) was originally published as Misbegotten Missionary; the publication was the Nov. 1950 Galaxy (GALNOV1950). I opened that publication and edited the contents to change the title, but this changed the title back on the work page! I changed it back there, only to find that it had also been changed back on the publication page. How can I make it clear that the work was originally published under a variant title without clobbering the more common title at the same time? grendel|khan 11:58, 20 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Unfortunately, this area of the application is often confusing. We have a couple of Help pages that cover Variant Title issues: Help:How to change a story in a collection and Help:How to reverse a variant title relationship. Please post any unclear or ambiguous sections here so that we could improve them :) Ahasuerus 12:24, 20 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Ah. No, that was very clear; I just hadn't seen those help pages. Thanks for the heads-up; it's fixed now. grendel|khan 13:27, 22 Jul 2007 (CDT)


I have here a copy of "The SF&F Journal" Issue 88 which has a list of all the (US) SFBC editions from its inception in 1953 through to June 1977. The list comes from Ellen Asher so should be reliable, but before I start using it as a reference can someone see if this sample looks reasonable? The format is Month of SFBC offer, Title, Author, Original publisher, original publication date (if known), original price/SFBC price. BLongley 11:57, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)

1958 (Cont.)
Jun No Blade of Grass John Christopher Sim & Schu 23/4/57 2.95/1.00
Jul The Black Cloud Fred Hoyle Harper 5/3/58 2.95/1.00
Aug The Man Who Couldn't Sleep Charles Eric Maine Lippincott 19/3/58 3.00/1.00
Sep The Lincoln Hunters Wilson Tucker Rinehart 10/7/58 2.95/1.00
Oct A Touch of Strange Theodore Sturgeon Doubleday 21/8/58 2.95/1.00
Nov Spacepower Donald Cox & Michael Steiko Winston 15/4/58 4.50/1.69
Dec The Third Galaxy Reader ed. H.L. Gold Doubleday 19/6/58 3.95/1.00

Jan No Place on Earth Louis Charbonneau Doubleday 4/9/58 2.95/1.00
Feb A Mile Beyond the Moon C.M. Kornbluth Doubleday 2/10/58 2.95/1.00
Mar The Best from F&SF: 8th Series ed. Anthony Boucher Doubleday 8/1/59 3.75/1.00
Apr The Star of Life Edmond Hamilton Torquil 21/2/59 2.95/1.00
May Triad (The World of A, The Voyage of the Space Beagle, Slan) A.E. Van Vogt Sim & Schuster - 7.50/1.69
Jun Nine Tomorrows Isaac Asimov Doubleday 5/2/59 3.50/1.00
Jul Not in Solitude Kenneth F. Gantz Doubleday 5/2/59 3.50/1.00
Aug The Enemy Stars Poul Anderson Lippincott 25/2/59 2.95/1.00
Sep The 4th Galaxy Reader ed. H.L. Gold Doubleday 9/4/59 3.95/1.00
Oct Ossian's Ride Fred Hoyle Harper 15/4/59 3.00/1.00
Nov Across the Sea of Stars (Childhood's End, Earthlight, 18 s.s.) Arthur C. Clarke Harcourt, Brace 19/8/59 3.95/1.69
Dec The War Against the Rull A.E. Van Vogt Sim & Schu 10/59 3.50/1.00

It could certainly be useful for filling in some of the older books, but I don't know if Tuck or somesuch reference is already known to be better. BLongley 11:57, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)

A spot check in Tuck showed that all those priced at $1.00 were $1.20 (in Tuck) and those at $1.69 were $1.90. I can't explain the consistently consistent inconsistence (unless a postage fee is added by Tuck?) Tuck doesn't list month of publication, but those shown match exactly James Nicoll's listing on rec.arts.sf.written. Is the date after the publisher the original publication date? If so, this would be a great help. I'd say go for it, and show the SF&F Journal as your source in the notes. Mhhutchins 16:07, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Yes, it's apparently the original publication date of the edition the SFBC copied. That may be more useful than the SFBC date itself. BLongley 20:27, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)
The SFBC used a code on the last couple of pages of their earlier books. This site [5] explains its history and how the code words. I've used it to date some of the SFBC's that i own.Kraang 18:42, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)
Well, if this is a reliable source we can possibly date ALL the 1953-1977 SFBC editions without even owning them. I think I'd better grab a sample of the later pages though: from July 1969 there are two editions listed per month. Still, the pages are hard to scan and pretty resistant to OCR (although "Caves of Stool" for May 1971 gave me a giggle, so I won't necessarily stop trying!), and that can wait till tomorrow. BLongley 20:27, 24 Jul 2007 (CDT)

Help: Change Cover Artist Name

I wanted to verify An ABC of Science Fiction but the artists name is mispelled in the entry. It is Wolotsky but is Walotsky in my volume. Also, Walotsky has many references in ISDB but Wolotsky only this one. What are the correct steps to follow to set the name correctly in the DB?TFRANK 01:28, 1 Aug 2007 (CDT)

There's a couple of ways to do this:
  1. Go to the publication with the incorrect spelling. Choose "Edit This Pub". In the ARTIST1 field, type over the incorrect name with the correct name, then choose "Submit Data".
  2. Enter the incorrectly spelled name (Wolotsky in this case). You'll pull up his summary page (there's only one title in this case). Click on the title that's incorrect. When that title page has come up, choose "Edit Title Date". Change the AUTHOR1 field to the correct spelling, then choose "Submit Data".

Either way should do the trick. Mhhutchins 15:50, 1 Aug 2007 (CDT)

The Peacemaker by Gardner Dozois

This title, written in 1983 has a listing for a Serial in it by a different author written in 1948. How do I remove the Serial entry from the Title? CoachPaul 08:52, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)

Serial records are currently linked to Novel records in Title biblios based on their titles and nothing else. It's a known Display Bug, #20046, to be precise. Ahasuerus 10:27, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)


Is there any way to break a Pseudonomian(sp) relationship? I have inadvertently made Robin Wilson a pseudonym of Robin Scott Wilson twice and can't seem to find a way to break one of the relationships. CoachPaul 14:59, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)

I think I'm responsible for the similar problem with Robert (No 'A') Heinlein and the advice there was to leave it to the experts (i.e. Al), I think. BLongley 16:03, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)
Also, Robin Scott, is listed as both a pseudonym of Robin Wilson, and Robin Scott Wilson, and that needs to change too. CoachPaul 15:17, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)
This sounds similar to this problem but with more titles involved. :-/ That might be fixable without Al's intervention but I've not tried it and it looks like a lot of edits. BLongley 16:03, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)
I think I remember reading a discussion somewhere that it was not doable but if you can figure out a way you can fix the double John W. Jakes I put in. I think this is something almost everybody does the first time they do a pseudonym.--swfritter 16:30, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)
It would be really useful to be able to delete pseudonym associations, especially when you flip flop a pseudonym and a canonical name. Unfortunately, the "0" trick, which lets you delete variant title associations, doesn't work for pseudonyms :( There is a good chance that Al will have some free time for the ISFDB next week, so adding this functionality as a high priority feature request may be a good idea :) Ahasuerus 16:55, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)
Do we have any requests for Al that aren't "High Priority"?? :-) CoachPaul 16:57, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)

(Unindent) I think this one can be called low. It's a cosmetic problem. Higher would be the Python errors which DO concern people that think they've broken the site. I'm personally worried about this sort of thing where we may have to be undoing some unfortunate past merges or sorting out a lack of merges and I'd like the tools to do them with. But generally, we should start a "Hey Al! Fix THIS first!" thread. (Actually, my main request for Al is new backups for me to download and play with!) BLongley 17:44, 3 Aug 2007 (CDT)

Reporting PYTHON Errors

What's the drill on reporting these. I see a number of references but I haven't picked out what the practice is supposed to be. I just got this error -

IndexError Python 2.4.2: /usr/local/bin/python Sat Aug 4 19:39:33 2007 A problem occurred in a Python script. Here is the sequence of function calls leading up to the error, in the order they occurred.

 372                                         first = 0
 373                                 pub = SQLGetPubsByTitle(review[0])

374 output = '

  • <a href="http:/%s/pl.cgi?%s">%s</a>' % (HTFAKE, 375 pub[0][PUB_TAG], 376 pub[0][PUB_TITLE]) output = '
  • <a href=" Fiction, Dec 1957</a>, (1957), reviewed by ', HTFAKE = '/', pub = [], PUB_TAG = 2, PUB_TITLE = 1 IndexError: list index out of range args = ('list index out of range',) Is this just a case of try again?TFRANK 19:52, 4 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Do you get the error while making a submission or did it come up on the page of a pub record? If it's a pub record please provide the link, and I can try to figure it what's happened (I'm not promising anything!) Mhhutchins 20:58, 4 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    I did a title search for Rogue in Space. When I selected the NOVEL entry, the bibliography page appears with this error pasted to it. If you go from the summary bibliography for Fredric Brown on this title, you get the same result.TFRANK 21:57, 4 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Fixed. This error occurred because there was a change in the title record of a review of this title. The updater then failed to go back and delete the first title, creating a record of a review without any publications. Hope that makes sense. Thanks for bringing it to our attention. It's possible that all reviews from the same publication had the same effect on the associated titles. I'll try to track down the pub that contained the review (it's probably the issue of Galaxy with a Spider Robinson review.) Mhhutchins 22:50, 4 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    There seem to be at least three situations with review/cover-art records that cause this sort of error, but I've not seen quite enough to create definitive bug reports (if there aren't any already). The updater SHOULDN'T have to go back and fix stray titles. But changing the title or the author seem a bit dodgy. Keep pointing them out though, as you find them - we'll fix it in the end! (Which reminds me, I need to post the workaround fix for all the "Doctor Who and the ..." titles that have the same Pub Tag....) BLongley 17:11, 6 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Whenever I replace a content with a revised content, I use the "Edit/Add Titles" and "Remove Titles" functions, BUT the original content title remains in the database without a publication. I personally feel it's my duty to keep the db as clean as possible. So I go back and delete the un-pubed (?) title. (That's pronounced "un-pubbed" not "un-pyoobed".) I'm not saying everyone should, but it would be nice. :-) Mhhutchins 17:35, 6 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    A Midsummer Tempest

    A Midsummer Tempest by Anderson is listed as being in a series with Three Hearts and Three Lions. The narrator of the story is Valeria Matuchek from Operation Chaos so what makes it part of the Three Hearts series? Dana Carson 16:21, 9 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    I think the two books were listed as belonging to the same series in the original John Wenn bibliographies back the early 1990s, which we used extensively in 1995-1996. It's been a long time since I read A Midsummer Tempest, but I seem to recall that there was an episode closer to the end where the protagonist meets somebody from Three Hearts and Three Lions (in a cross-dimensional inn of some sort, perhaps?). I remember thinking at the time that it was probably more of a side reference than a real connection between the two books. If we were to link all SF/F/H books that refer to each other, not only would we have Jack Chalker's ...And the Devil Will Drag You Under in the same series as Three Hearts and Three Lions, but we would also have to link most of Laumer's series (and even standalone books) into one mega-series since Bolos show up in Retief, Night of Delusions, etc :) Ahasuerus 16:34, 9 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    There is the Old Phoenix inn between the worlds where Valeria is telling the story. I expect that every patron described is a reference to either one of Anderson's works or a work he liked. The last chapter where she has just finished the story I recognize, a unattached lensman, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, Huck Finn and Jim and several others who I'm not sure of. I'd say no series, the body of the story is set in a AU where Shakespeare is the great historian and Hamlet etc. happened. So probably no series would be best although I'll still file it between Operation Chaos and Operation Luna on my shelf. Dana Carson 22:29, 9 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Thanks, I recall at least the Lensman reference now :) I agree that making them standalones would be the best approach. Ahasuerus 20:20, 10 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    New Feature Requests?

    Is there a procedure to go through when you are interested in requesting a new feature or data field be added to ISFDB?

    That would be the ISFDB Feature List page, but it is currently "protected as it's a common spam target". Once our Wiki software has been upgraded, we can unprotect that page, but for now, please post any suggestions on the Community Portal and a moderator will copy it to the appropriate section of the protected page. Ahasuerus 20:19, 10 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    Thanks! I will do that. BTW, how do we go about creating a signature so we can automatically have our username and date/time stamp inserted when making edits to this wiki? Dgeiser13

    You've already got one - as we said in the welcome, "Please sign your name on talk pages using four tildes (~~~~)". This is a talk-page too. Or did you want something fancier like JVjr's? BLongley 16:14, 13 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    Myrren's Gift cannot be found via ISBN

    For inexplicable reasons, Myrren's Gift cannot be found from advanced search by searching for ISBN 0060747579.--Md5i 23:41, 16 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    It's my understanding that most of the menu choices in the Publication Search fields of the advance search is inoperable. I think only the title choice actually works. Maybe in a future update? Mhhutchins 11:51, 17 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    It's not that bad - Year works, but is pretty useless on its own. Author seems OK. TAG is a very useful one for fixing certain problems. At times I wish Publisher worked, and some of the Python errors must be very off-putting to novices. But it's not TOTALLY useless. BLongley 12:59, 17 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    ISBN search has worked for me for hundreds of books. In fact, it has worked for every single catalogued book in my collection for which an entry exists in the ISFDB. Except, of course, for this one book. That is the puzzling aspect to this. I wonder if it has anything to do with the fact that the other publication under the same title differs in ISBN by only the last digit by a count of one (not counting the checksum).
    That's fixed - somehow an invalid ISBN got in, editing it back to what it appeared to be fixed it. BLongley 13:47, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    The Cyberiad/Cyberiada

    I've got this submission on hold as I think we already have enough variants in place, we just need to merge the two "The Cyberiad" titles. However, I get the "WARNING: records 187190 and 596973 both appear in the publication The Cyberiad: Fables for the Cybernetic Age" if I suggest that, but I can't find the Pub with both titles in. Anyone know what I'm missing? BLongley 13:47, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)

    This Publication records points to both Cyberiad Title records, The Cyberiad (1974) and The Cyberiad (0000). You couldn't see these Title records as long as Publication type was "Collection" since the software tries to be "smart" and doesn't show Collection Titles for Collection Publications. Now that I have temporarily changed the Pub type to "Novel", you can see both offenders and Remove the wrong one. Hopefully, once Al comes back, he will change some of these "user friendly" display/edit rules that confuse everybody :( Ahasuerus 14:33, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Thanks - before I go fix it, what I really want to know is how you found that pub out of the three possibilities? Or was it just trial and error, and you got lucky on the first one? Or might the other two have the same problem, but we don't know till we start fixing? BLongley 15:31, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    It just looked like the last one entered, so I figured chances are it was the problem one :) Ahasuerus 15:54, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Grr.... Now I get the "WARNING: Unable to locate the title reference for this publication. Removing titles while in this state is dangerous. Check to make sure the publication type is correct (collection, novel, anthology, etc.). Then come back and remove the title in question." message. And no clue WHICH title is which as it's only the date and parent that differs and those aren't shown. :-( This isn't "user friendly", it's practically "user vicious"! I'm not going to guess tonight, feel free to have a go or I'll try tomorrow night when I have time to correct it if it goes wrong. At the moment, a long bath with a good book is more appealing. BLongley 16:16, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    The "unable to locate the title reference for this publication" warning is displayed whenever the Remove Title logic can't find a Title record that matches the Publication record's type. Since the Publication type was set to "Novel" and there was no associated "Novel" Title in the publication, it gave you this warning. It is safe to ignore these warnings when you know the cause of the mismatch and expect to go back to the record and fix it later on, but they certainly look intimidating. Once the underlying issue with the "nice" logic is fixed, the problem should go away. Well, hopefully. Ahasuerus 18:20, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    Yes, I knew it was safe to ignore, what I couldn't do was be SURE I was removing the right one. And I was getting too impatient to risk deleting the wrong one then having to remove the other and add back the correct one. Still, at least it was a 50% chance this time rather than one in three. BLongley 13:09, 22 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    In the meantime, I have fixed the record and I think everything is back to normal. Makes you wish you could volunteer to help Al move to Austin faster, doesn't it? :) Ahasuerus 18:20, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)
    I know what you mean about "user friendly" changes not always being welcome, I've actually just been told to REMOVE some recent improvements at work as it made things TOO efficient. Apparently we need the "create it, review it, submit it, wait for it, review results, complete it" stages to avoid our internal mistakes being visible. Whereas we're quite happy to let EXTERNAL users make these mistakes in one go and let them explain it to the Information Commissioner later... ah well, it's a novelty actually being asked to slow things down for once. BLongley 15:31, 21 Aug 2007 (CDT)