User talk:Roglo

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This editor is no longer actively participating and is unlikely to respond to messages left here.

If this user is the sole verifier of a publication record, please:

  • post only notices on the user's talk page concerning the addition of images and notes
  • post inquiries regarding any other changes to the verified record at the Moderator noticeboard

Otherwise, please post notices and inquiries only on the talk pages of the other primary verifiers.


Hello, Roglo, and welcome to the ISFDB Wiki! I hope you like the place and decide to stay. Here are some pages that you might find helpful:

I hope you enjoy editing here! Please sign your name on talk pages using four tildes (~~~~); this will insert your name and the date. If you need help, check out the community portal, or ask me on my talk page. Again, welcome! Ahasuerus 23:28, 11 Dec 2007 (CST)

The Hard SF Renaissance

Thanks for submitting the trade paperback version of The Hard SF Renaissance! I have approved the submission and added the designation "tp" (for "trade paperback") to the record. I also changed the 13 digit ISBN to its 10 digit counterpart (using the converter at since our software doesn't accept 13 digit ISBNs yet. I then rejected the duplicate submission, which I assume you created while waiting for the first one to be approved. Unfortunately, it often takes some time for submissions to be processed depending on moderator availability, the complexity of the submission and what (if anything) needs to be modified in the submitted data. Thanks again and welcome to the ISFDB! :-)

P.S. Please note that, as our Main Page states, all links that start with "" are currently unstable. You can still access all Wiki and Help pages by manually replacing "" with "" in the affected URLs. Ahasuerus 23:28, 11 Dec 2007 (CST)

Cyber-Killers anthology

Thanks for adding a new edition of this anthology. There's a couple of things that should be edited, both that someone new to the database would probably be unfamiliar with. The link to the cover art on Amazon includes a code that adds white space around the graphic which can be removed with a simple change in the URL. For example in this URL "" drop the "._ss500_" and the white space will disappear. Make sure to keep only one of the dots before "jpg". Also when adding contents that have a generic title like "Introduction" add the title of the book to distinguish it from similar titles. So in this record change "Introduction" to "Introduction (Cyber-Killers)". I'll let you update the record to give you some experience in making edits. Again, thanks for your contributions. Mhhutchins 09:51, 15 Dec 2007 (CST)

Merging variant titles

You may have noticed that I rejected your submission to create a variant of PKD's "Impostor" because one already exists. I believe you were trying to merge the variant "Imposter" record created by your submission of Cyber-Killers. Ordinarily you could use the "Dup Candidates" function, but in this case variant titles would not be listed. Use the "Titles" function on the " PKD summary page". You'll get an alphabetical list of all titles with check boxes. Check the boxes for the two records of "Imposter" then submit by clicking the "Merge Selected Records" button at the bottom. (Do NOT check the box for the record titled "Impostor".) You'll get a conflict resolution page, where you would choose the correct date (in this case 1953) and the title parent (choose to accept the title parent 55911.) 10:48, 15 Dec 2007 (CST)

Thanks! Roglo 10:57, 15 Dec 2007 (CST)

Publication search by Publisher

I see that you have added the following error to the bug list:

db = <_mysql.connection open to 'localhost' at 820300c>, db.query = <built-in method query of Connection object>, query = "select pubs.* from pubs where pubs.pub_publisher... '%Millennium%' order by pubs.pub_title limit 100"
OperationalError: (1054, "Unknown column 'pubs.pub_publisher' in 'where clause'")
     args = (1054, "Unknown column 'pubs.pub_publisher' in 'where clause'")

This error happens to be the same as our old friend Bug 20002:

  • 20002 (also bugs 20006 and 20013, now merged into this one) OPEN Reported Jul 17 2005 by hossman - searching by publications by publisher doesn't seem to work...
Traceback (most recent call last): File "/www/", line 214, in ? db.query(query) _mysql_exceptions.OperationalError: (1054, "Unknown column 'pubs.pub_publisher' in 'where clause'").

so I combined the two. Also, please note that we are moving to SourceForge for bug tracking purposes, but we will still monitor the old Bug pages in the Wiki, at least for a while. Thanks! Ahasuerus 19:55, 15 Dec 2007 (CST)

Lem's "Maska"

It looks like the novella was first published in 1976 -- see the Polish Wikipedia article about the eponymous collection. Ahasuerus 13:47, 18 Dec 2007 (CST)

Yes but it was also published as a book containing this single story. The same Niezwyciężony, Odruch warunkowy and Kongres futurologiczny - they were initially published in collections and at some time later as a book with the single work. I wondered what is an omnibus. E.g. edition "Kongres futurologiczny/Maska" is a small book < 190 pages but has both titles on the cover, and each story has a title page inside (just title of the story on the page, the back side of the page is blank). However, both stories were previously published in collections, only later were published as books. In some cases, part of the 'omnibus' was (I think) never published as a book, so the 'omnibus' is really a collection. --Roglo 15:53, 18 Dec 2007 (CST)
Well, if a novella first appeared in a collection and was later published as a standalone, then the standalone edition will be entered as a Chapterbook (the proper technical term is actually "chapbook", but we haven't fixed the software to display it correctly yet) and the two Title records merged. By the way, if the work in question is novel length, then its first publication in book form (either as a standalone or in an anthology/collection) becomes the Title date and the Serial Title is not to merged with the later Novel Title. Please note that this is different vis a vis short fiction, where the date of the first appearance (regardless of whether that appearance was in a magazine, collection, anthology, chapterbook or any other source) becomes the Title date and any subsequent appearances are considered instances of the same Title. The reason for this somewhat arcane difference is that collectors and bibliographers consider the first book publication of novel length works to be their "true" first editions, so it's important to know when that happened. Another reason for the distinction is that novels are often revised for book publication while short fiction usually migrates from magazine pages to collections/anthologies unmolested. Hope this makes some sense :)
As far as Omnibuses go, they can also be tricky. As our Help pages say:
  • A publication may be classified is an omnibus if it contains multiple works that have previously been published independently, and at least one of them is a novel. However, generally this category should not be used unless the other categories do not seem appropriate. For example, if a publication contains stories that have previously been published independently in pamphlet form, this should be classified as an anthology. A collection such as Robert Heinlein's "The Past Through Tomorrow" should be categorized as a collection, although one of the works is a novel. "Omnibus" is appropriate for such publications as the Science Fiction Book Club's collections of three independent novels by different authors under one set of covers; or for a single-volume edition of all the Amber novels by Roger Zelazny. If none of the contents have been published before, the inclination should be to classify the publication as an anthology, rather than an omnibus, but this does not have to be an absolute rule. The distinction between "Omnibus" and the other types is somewhat subjective and may require discussion and consensus on the publication biblio wiki page.
Who said the life of a genre bibliographer will be all roses? :-) Ahasuerus 22:16, 18 Dec 2007 (CST)
Yes, I can see a lot of attractions coming :-)
So, the Człowiek z Marsa should be dated 1994 (the first official publication)? Or 1985 (the illegal publication)? --Roglo 04:27, 19 Dec 2007 (CST)
The Novel record will be presumably dated 1994 since it was the year of the first book publication. The 1985 publication was in an "illegal" (banned by the Communist authorities during the martial law period?) fanzine, wasn't it? If so, it probably doesn't count as a first book publication for our purposes.
I'm not sure about this case, probably it was an underground publisher, without author's knowledge. (In some other cases 1st Polish book editions were real "pirated" edition, e.g. "Clockwork Orange" was first published as a pullout section in "Fantastyka" and later reprinted illegally as a book; this same happened, I think, with MacApp's "Recall Not Earth". This should be probably noted somewhere, as there is usually not enough information to add such editions as pubs). --Roglo 04:43, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)
Ah, unauthorized/pirated translations/editions! They have been a royal pain for SFWA for the last 10-15 years ever since the Soviet collapse, but their history within the genre goes back quite a few decades. We do list them including Ace's pirated version of The Lord of the Rings, although we are still missing a number of better known examples like the "Barton Werper" Tarzan books. Oh well, we'll get them all -- eventually :) Ahasuerus 13:49, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)
As far as the associated Serial data goes, it looks like the novel originally appeared in 31 (!) parts in "Nowy Świat Przygód". In theory, we would want to created 31 Publication records for it, one for each magazine issue, and enter one Serial Title record per issue, i.e. "Człowiek z Marsa (Part 1 of 31)", "Człowiek z Marsa (Part 2 of 31)", etc. However, that sounds like a lot of work and would make Lem's Summary page rather crowded. I think the current Note in the Title record should suffice, although we may want to discuss it further over on the Community Portal since this was common practice back in the 1800s. As I wrote back in 1995, "An instant classic of "popular literature" like _Le Juif Errant_ (_The Wandering Jew_) by Eugene Sue was published almost simultaneously in one volume, two volumes, three volumes and as 78 [sic!!] chapbooks, only to be reprinted later in 4 volumes, 5 volumes and 20 [sic] volumes." Ahasuerus 18:23, 19 Dec 2007 (CST)
I think a note will be enough. BTW a lot of serial novels were published on sections of single pages in daily or weekly newspapers; every such section would contain about 2-3 pages of a paperback edition, and this makes a lot of installments... --Roglo 04:43, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)
BTW Dzienniki gwiazdowe was first published as a collection, where the Star Diaries of Ijon Tichy were only about half of the book; it was a collection which included a collection (individual travels were not included in the Contents). So I'm not sure if it belongs to the Ijon Tichy series (individual travels do). --Roglo 04:27, 19 Dec 2007 (CST)
Ah, I see! We seem to have a few cross-series Collections like that, e.g. Mortal Engines collects a number of stories from The Cyberiad, but it also includes a Pirx story and "The Mask", so we can't assign the Collection record to a particular series.
Also, I see that you have added Der Mensch vom Mars, the German translation of Człowiek z Marsa, as a Variant Title. At this time we create Variant Titles (or "vt"s) for English language translations; all other translations are entered as Publications under the canonical Title the way it is done for Lem's Astronauci. The reason for this decision is that a popular author (like Lem or Heinlein or even Poul Anderson) has been likely translated into dozens of languages, so creating Variant Titles for every language would make their summary bibliography pages completely unreadable. This is by no means a perfect solution and we have been thinking about ways to make it more user friendly. For example, here is what I wrote in a recent discussion of this topic:
  • the way we currently display foreign language publications is not very user friendly as Bill observed. Ideally, we would have separate Titles for foreign language translations that would be made into Variant Titles of English language Titles. We could then make language selection an option in each user's preferences and only display the selected languages when generating pages for that user (once we add language tags to all non-English Titles, that is). If a user doesn't sign in, then he gets to see all the Titles, which would be an incentive for new users to register.
OK, I will move them back. --Roglo 04:43, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)
Other than that, you seem to be making good progress with Lem. Nice job! I have added some Series information to a few of the stories, but in most cases we are yet to identify the Polish language canonical Titles, so that aspect will need to be revisited once we have more data. Ahasuerus 18:23, 19 Dec 2007 (CST)

Series conventions

Thanks! I will add Polish versions of the Tichy and Pirx stories and later Cyberiada. I see it is possible to have subseries, and I wonder if we should split "Ijon Tichy" stories into "Voyages of Ijon Tichy" and "Reminiscences of Ijon Tichy" as is commonly done, and leave Tichy novels in the main series. --Roglo 04:43, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)

Sure, that should work. Our software allows an unlimited number of nested series -- see Star Trek Universe for a somewhat extreme example. The only major limitation is that a Title has to belong to one (and only one) series, so crossover situations and diverging series have to be documented in Notes. Also, a Series can have only one name, so multiple names are separated by slashes by convention. Multiple "canonical" series names are not unheard of since series are occasionally given different names when they are reprinted abroad, e.g. US vs. UK vs. Australia. See Pentagram (original)/The Gatekeepers (US)/The Power of Five for a particularly messy example. Ahasuerus 13:33, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)

Also, "The Cyberiad" is really two subseries, "Trurl and Klapaucius", i.e. the original Cyberiada and Sallies, and "Robot's Fables" with other main characters. I'm not sure about the series' names, though, because Cyberiada is often used as the name for stories on Trurl and Klapaucius, e.g. has "The Cyberiad" as a more generic term, while uses the name Cyberiada exclusively for Trurl and Klapaucius stories. Mixed collections (i.e. most of them) would go to the top level series. (I assume that we can have a collection in one series, but the stories in it - in another series) --Roglo 04:43, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)

That's right, you can mix and match series and subseries data fairly freely. As far as the names go, you can change the Series name field at any time, so we can easily clean things up later once we have determined what the "canonical" series name should be. Thanks! Ahasuerus 13:33, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)

Księga robotów

I have approved the addition of Księga robotów and then changed the data in the "Publisher" field to the standard bibliographic convention, "Warszawa: Iskry". Everything else looks good, we just need a bunch of variant titles and series attributions added once we have the data entered. Next we need to figure out why our search logic finds Cover: Księga robotów, but not Ksiega robotów. Something to do with Unicode, I bet... Ahasuerus 15:51, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)

And the answer appears to be that a search on a "ę" is not the same as a search on an "e". This may be a configurable MySQL index setting, let me check with Al... Ahasuerus 15:54, 20 Dec 2007 (CST)
What is the standard for the "Publisher" field? City: Publisher's Name? --Roglo 03:48, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
That's right, that's how most library catalogs display this information. We usually don't specify the city when dealing with with major imprints like Knopf, Corgi or Bantam, but we try to add it if the publisher is obscure. Ahasuerus 19:33, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
For Polish editions, I entered only publisher's name (as appeared on the title page, if I had access to it) whenever it included the city; or Publisher's Name, City whenever it did not. Publisher names are often omitted in bibliographies, editions are described as City, Year. So the city is useful here (I was not sure but now I think it is). BTW one of the German editions has just the city as the publisher. --Roglo 03:48, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
At one point one of our editors was entering a Czech translation of a Heinlein novel from an online catalog and he thought that "Praha" was the publisher :) Ahasuerus 19:33, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
I've added coll. Noc księżycowa, and again on the 'pending submissions' list the title is displayed with HTML Entity numbers. Stories do not have such problems. Also, the server sends
Content-Type: text/html; charset=iso-8859-1
in server headers and
<meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1" >
is set in pages' headers. So, it's using HTML entities to display non-Latin1 characters. The same in editing mode (it looks quite ugly, see all those Podróże from Księga robotów). --Roglo 05:40, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
True, some pages do not display Unicode characters correctly, but I believe that at least they get filed properly. However, I have recently discovered that searching on non-Latin-1 characters is broken :( Something to discuss with User:Alvonruff, our programmer, who actually knows how this stuff is handled internally. Ahasuerus 19:33, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
I'm not sure what happens when non-Latin1 data is entered, not displayed, though. I've also noticed that Daniel Mróz became Daniel Mroz, should I enter the name like this? --Roglo 05:40, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
I suspect I know what happened in his case. We already had a "Daniel Mroz" on file, so when you submitted a record for "Daniel Mróz", the software said, "Oh, it must be the same person as Daniel Mroz!" and used the pre-existing internal Author ID instead of creating a new one. You can easily fix it by pulling up Mróz's Author Data page and changing the spelling, but, as I said above, it may break some searches :( Ahasuerus 19:33, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
BTW Wiki has
Content-Type: text/html; charset=utf-8
in server's headers and
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" />
in pages headers, so wiki is using encoding different from ISFDB's. --Roglo 05:45, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
The Wiki software will be upgraded in the first half of January, which will hopefully address a number of issues. We will also get a virtual server of our own, so may have more control over the Wiki settings, which are currently controlled by our host. Here is to hope! :) Ahasuerus 19:33, 21 Dec 2007 (CST)
Hm, I like UTF-8! --Roglo 06:03, 22 Dec 2007 (CST)

Cover: Le Morte Darthur

I see that you would like to change the title of this cover art by William Bell Scott from "Cover: Le Morte Darthur" to "The Lamentation of King Arthur". At this time our Cover Art records reflect the title on the cover even if a pre-existing painting was used by the published. We already have the latter documented in the Notes fields, so I think we are all set in that respect. As far as the date goes, I agree that we want to change it to 0000-00-00 and have made the change. Thanks! Ahasuerus 16:21, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)

OK, thanks! (I was unable to determine the date; there are reproduction on the net which show that the reproduction on the cover is really a mirror image of the painting, perhaps this should be noted somewhere). --Roglo 16:35, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
I poked around as well, to no avail. Good point about documenting that it is an exact copy of the original painting, I'll add it to the Notes field. Ahasuerus 16:39, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
I mean, it is reversed (and fragment) so that in the upper right corner there is room for the title; now on Amazon there is a later edition with smaller reproduction but also reversed. --Roglo 16:46, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
And the original --Roglo 16:48, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Oh, I see! Thanks, I have clarified the Note, hopefully it looks better now :) Ahasuerus 16:53, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Yes, thanks! --Roglo 16:55, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)

Bajki robotów

I have approved Bajki robotów, but wouldn't the English version of the title be "Robots' Fables" rather than "Robot's Fables"? Ahasuerus 17:50, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)

Yes; I've copied the translation from the bibliography, but you are right, I'll change it. --Roglo 18:00, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Thanks, approved! Ahasuerus 18:08, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
I would like to create a series Robots' Fables series to group the stories; I think Bajki robotów should go there even if they contain 3 stories which became later The Cyberiad (and we need a book in a series). —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Roglo (talkcontribs) .
I guess it should work as long as we document the 3 exceptions in the Notes field(s). Give it a shot and we will see what happens :) Ahasuerus 18:30, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Jak Mikromił i Gigacyan ucieczk... looks strange on the pending list, it should be Jak Mikromił i Gigacyan ucieczkę mgławic wszczęli. --Roglo 18:41, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Looks like it was just a display problem with non-ASCII characters in the Pending Submissions list; the data came across just fine. By the way, we used to have an obscure software bug that caused problems whenever a Series name included apostrophes. I think it has been fixed, but if you see anything unusual with "Robots' Tales", please let me know and I will investigate.
P.S. Lem is coming along nicely. The page looks much better than it did just a few days ago. Thanks! :) Ahasuerus 18:54, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Oops, I thing I've set wrong series in the first The Computer that Fought a Dragon, I've submitted another. --Roglo 19:05, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
I am afraid I didn't notice this submission. Does the title look OK now? Ahasuerus 19:17, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)
Yes, I submitted it again with the correct series and everything is OK now. Thanks! --Roglo 19:22, 25 Dec 2007 (CST)

New Worlds 2

I have approved the changes to New Worlds 2, but I was wondering if you wanted to make "Corsairs of the Second Ether" more consistent. Currently, two of the three parts are entered as a Serial and one as Shortfiction. Would it be more consistent to make is just a Series of short stories since it's not really serialized across multiple publications? Also, is "Additional Material for the science fiction outline (The Name of the Game is Death)" short fiction or an essay? Thanks! Ahasuerus 17:01, 1 Jan 2008 (CST)

Yes, I made the 3rd serial, too. This is really written by Moorcock and split into 3 parts. I'm not sure how to call it. I don't know what the additional material is - comments or fragments of the text of the novel? So, I wanted to keep it together with the outline. --Roglo 17:23, 1 Jan 2008 (CST)
I've found the Dick's materials, it here, perhaps the outlines should be ESSAYs, but i'll think about it tomorrow. --Roglo 17:27, 1 Jan 2008 (CST)
Sure, we can keep it as a Serial for now, but we probably want to discuss it over on the Standards board to make sure that we are all on the same page. We had a similar "split story" split into 7 parts in a Cherryh collection and we ended up making it a Series of short stories, I believe. Ahasuerus 18:21, 1 Jan 2008 (CST)
IMHO it depends on how the story is written: 3 connected episodes or a single story cut into 3 pieces? Difficult to say without checking the text. --Roglo 09:57, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Corsairs of the Second Ether were included in Moorcock's Blood: A Southern Fantasy, again as three parts. However, we have Blood recorded as NOVEL, without Contents listing, so the relation to the Corsairs is lost (Corsairs of the Second Ether seem to be used as interludes between parts of the novel, e.g. they are listed here in the Locus index). --Roglo 14:01, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Moorcock's work can be hard to record adequately since almost everything is interconnected (and frequently rewritten!) I have a copy of Blood somewhere, but I think User:Unapersson is our resident Moorcock expert, so we may want to ask him about it. Ahasuerus 14:15, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
OK, I've just asked. --Roglo 14:42, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)

Links to sources

I'm not sure if you're aware that links for your sources can be placed directly in the pub's notes. The creation of a page for bibliographic notes is not necessary. For instance the link to Worldcat that you placed on this page could have been placed in the notes for this pub, saving an extra step for someone researching the pub. Just something to consider. Thanks. Mhhutchins 11:51, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)

OK, thanks. I thought the wiki is intended for such links and for discussing the differences between various sources (e.g. I've just added Contents using Locus index, but price in Locus index is different from existing data in ISFDB). --Roglo 12:05, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
You're right. The wiki page is a good place for discussions, but if all you're adding is a link to your source, then one placed in the pub notes would be more efficient. Either way, no big deal. I'm glad to see someone actually taking advantage of this seldom-used feature. And even more so, that you've taken the time to provide sources, a very uncommon practice among editors. Thanks for submitting. Mhhutchins 12:19, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Adding the sources to the Notes field has the advantage that Notes field is available at the time of adding new title. To use wiki, you have to wait until the pub is visible. --Roglo 12:52, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
True. And another advantage of the database is that it is more stable than the wiki. Also, because the wiki is unmoderated, notes can disappear without anyone ever knowing. Mhhutchins 13:36, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)

Wintle pseudonyms

I think we have a problem with this author and his pseudonyms. You made "William Wintle" a pseudonym of William J. Wintle. And "W. James Wintle" a pseudonym of W. J. Wintle. I'm holding your latest submissions to make "William Wintle" a pseudonym of W. J. Wintle, and "William J. Wintle" a pseudonym of W. J. Wintle. Once a pseudonym has been created, I don't think there's a way to break the link, and making a pseudonym of a pseudonym creates further headaches. We must first determine which name is canonical, and go from there. Let me check further to see what we can do. Thanks. Mhhutchins 12:08, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)

W. J. Wintle has a collection of stories, so after browsing all Wintle records I thought W. J. Wintle is better as a canonical name (there are 4 Wintle variants in the database). --Roglo 12:14, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
And the collection is here. --Roglo 12:16, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Michael is quite right, once an Author pseudonym has been created, there is no easy way to get rid of it, so we have to be careful. As far as Wintle is concerned, the 1999 reprint edition that you linked above was published as by "W. J. Wintle". However, the original 1921 edition (London, Heath Cranton) was published as by "W. James Wintle" and recent (1990-2007) reprints of his stories have been mostly as by "William J. Wintle" (all according to OCLC records). He was better know for his non-fiction about famous people like Florence Nightingale, Frances E. Willard, J. L. Phillips, etc, and those books were published as by "W. J. Wintle" (again according to OCLC), so I would be inclined to use it as the canonical name. Ahasuerus 12:28, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
I made W. J. Wintle the canonical name, and the others as pseudonyms. There's still an odd relationship with William Wintle and William J. Wintle, but until we have to means to break pseudonym links, it will just have to stand as is. Thanks to you both. Mhhutchins 13:28, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Thank you for your patience :-) As an example of potential future problems, you could look up the name: Hildebrandt. We have: Brothers Hildebrandt, The Brothers Hildebrandt, Hildebrandt, Greg and Tim Hildebrandt, individual Greg Hildebrandt and Tim Hildebrandt. The Brothers Hildebrandt is set as pseudonym for both 'individual' brothers, but other Hildebrandts seem to be hanging freely.... --Roglo 13:44, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
Oh sure, there is a ton of work to be done in the pseudonym area! Just keep in mind that we can't have "collective canonical names" since most Author level fields (like place and year of birth) do not make sense for collective entities. At least not unless the brothers were twins and died on the same day... Ahasuerus 14:00, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
There's a Tim Hildebrand (notice spelling) author of this novel which has no connection with the Brothers. I could point out several authors who are pseudonyms of THEMSELVES. A tangled web indeed. Mhhutchins 14:02, 2 Jan 2008 (CST)
I noticed today that some of the Doctor Who authors are entered the wrong way, with the pseudonymous publications entered under the canonical name. :-/ They LOOK nicely organised but they're inconsistent with the way we represent them in the rest of the ISFDB. BLongley 07:37, 5 Jan 2008 (CST)

Philip K. Dick

I notice you're leaving notes to yourself about the collected works. I have all five Gollancz/Orion books if you want to compare - and I probably created some of the variants that are SO frustrating now. (When do we get a Worldwide, non-variable Title for books?) I've got a lot of the individual titles too and one of my Scripting aims is to be able to put in a Collection and see if I already have all the stories or not. Could save me a LOT of shelf-space in the future! (But probably needs Multiple Verifiers sorted here before it's Definitive/Generic.) BLongley 16:52, 4 Jan 2008 (CST)

Yes, that's why I came to ISFDB: tracking if and where I have the stories from a new collection/anthology is getting harder and harder. I have 2 volumes of the Dick's 5 vol. collection from HarperCollins (reprint of Grafton, reprint of Gollancz ;-) ) . Looks like you have to stick to volume numbers, because the titles are quite misleading. BTW Collections without Contents are quite useless for me, and I see here a collection verified but without contents listing... (Here is another edition with Contents but not verified. Hm...) --Roglo 04:05, 5 Jan 2008 (CST)
Yes, some verifiers are lazy - or used to be when they started. You can try and bug the active ones to finish the job - it's not too bad when you can clone one with contents. Unfortunately one verified and a different one with contents is no assurance for the rest of us. :-/ BLongley 07:33, 5 Jan 2008 (CST)
I don't how to clone Contents between existing pubs, but I've cloned an existing hc US edition of RRetrospective with contents to make it a tp UK one. --Roglo 08:12, 5 Jan 2008 (CST)
You can't clone contents between pubs, but you can clone a pub with the right contents to look like the one with no contents - then delete the one with no contents. It's usually faster than entering all the content entries. BLongley 15:13, 5 Jan 2008 (CST)
I submitted my 2 vols.; again I have Imposter not Impostor (vol.2), but then they probably renamed the story after the movie... --Roglo 09:08, 6 Jan 2008 (CST)
I've crafted a quick'n'dirty Shortfiction I've got script which shows I have all but 11 titles - and of those I have some in Novel form, some under a variant title, and some are actually plot outlines that were never properly published. So I feel fairly complete now. BLongley 11:39, 6 Jan 2008 (CST)
I couldn't resist:
| title                                    | storylen | user_id |
| A Scanner Darkly (excerpt)               | sf       |    NULL | excerpt
| Afterword (A Little Something for Us     | sf       |    NULL | not a story
| Cantata 140                              | nv       |    NULL | expanded became a title variant of The Crack in Space [1], [2]
| Fawn, Look Back                          | sf       |    NULL | outline of an unwritten novel; perhaps essay?
| Frozen Journey                           | ss       |    NULL | variant of 'I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon'
| Imposter                                 | ss       |    NULL | variant of 'Impostor'
| Retreat from Rigel                       | ss       |    NULL | variant of 'Tony and the Beetles'
| The Unteleported Man                     | nv       |    NULL | expanded, eventually pub. as Lies, Inc.
| Time Pawn                                | nv       |    NULL | a novella eventually expanded into DR. FUTURITY (1960)
| Vulcan's Hammer                          | nv       |    NULL | again became a novel
| Warning: We Are Your Police              | ss       |    NULL | plot outline for tv. Written as a narrative story [3]
11 rows in set (0.00 sec)
Anyway, novellas were probably too long for inclusion in the collection. So, it is complete. --Roglo 15:34, 6 Jan 2008 (CST)
I'm sure the fansite knows of more than we do yet. But I've enough for now.
And I'm glad you revealed yourself as someone able to run scripts against backups - are you able to WRITE them too? Most of mine can do with some improvement, as I can't run PL/SQL against ISFDB and haven't learnt other scripting languages for MySQL yet. BLongley 16:37, 6 Jan 2008 (CST)
I hope I will be able to write something useful; I had some experience with PostgreSQL a few years ago. --Roglo 00:31, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
That should be a good enough start for MySQL. It's the ISFDB structure I find more confusing. I don't know if you noticed it, but I've brain-dumped a few notes and things to try. Let me know if you find it useful. BLongley 12:00, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
Very nice! I will have to experiment with the 'history' records; I'd like to see history of a title, not just the list of my submissions.--Roglo 12:35, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
Well, I can't fault your ambition - that's one I haven't even looked at yet! At least SOME of the other tables did get documented, that's one of the mysteries still - but as "Submissions" isn't populated in the backup it may be the way to go. But there's less than 5000 rows, so I don't know quite what it's the history OF. A brief look suggests "Authors" - not titles. BLongley 13:29, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
I've installed the downloadable version of ISFDB (thank God the banner is different ;-) ), so I can create new submissions. Indeed, it looks like authors. If you click on the Recent edits link in the left panel, you can see that of all the submissions only AuthorUpdates have link in the Submission field. It links to history.cgi, which shows modified fields (like this. And when you submit author data, you don't see XML but a table with changes. I don't see MakeVariant or NewPub added to history. AuthorUpdate is added after it is Approved by moderator.
The submissions table, OTOH, contains the XML submissions, so it would be useful to see them. As I can see, moderators have a nice view of a submitted new book. But I will have to play a bit with submissions. --Roglo 15:23, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
You have a full, working, local ISFDB implementation? That makes you a rarity indeed! I think I'll stop offering you suggestions and ask for help myself! I have Apache installed for my Oracle work, Python is sort of installed, MySQL obviously working, adding them all together is something I've not yet done. BLongley 17:22, 7 Jan 2008 (CST)
It's a new achievement and I don't know if it's 'full working' but I could self-moderate a few submissions and browse data. You need mysql-python (or MySQL-python aka MySQLdb) . The versions I have on Fedora 8 are:
Because of changes in python and mysql-python, I had to modify a few things in the python scripts, i.e.
replace  whrandom with random
replace  db.escape(author) with db.escape(author, MySQLdb.converters.conversions) etc.
and after messing about for some time I have it all in cgi-bin and some static files in the main html dir. I will try to repeat the process later and describe it. --Roglo 02:51, 8 Jan 2008 (CST)
Oh, and I don't have users in the database, so verified pubs generate python errors. I have to copy the user list from somewhere... --Roglo 10:56, 11 Jan 2008 (CST)
I think that's private for security reasons, but you can probably just generate a dummy list from IDs found in the verification table and add Real names as and when they're found, if you need them - you know my two already. The rest you can find just by comparing a sample verification from the backup against the live database, so the "security" reason isn't that valid really. I wouldn't publish any you work out though. BLongley 13:08, 11 Jan 2008 (CST)


Good idea, thanks. I don't need real names, VerifierN will be enough. I just haven't looked into the verifications. --Roglo 15:01, 11 Jan 2008 (CST)


I approved your update to this pub but then went back and set page count to 0 as CDs don't have pages. It suppresses the Bibliographic warnings a missing page count causes. If you could do that when you're editing an audio-book anyway it saves us a little work. BLongley 12:51, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)

Thanks. Earlier this Audio pub was accepted, where I entered the number of CDs as 'page count', which seems good idea (except the 'pp' are added in the title bibliography). This time, however, I didn't know the number of CD. Blackwell states '6 Audio CDs'; should I add this as page count or add a note? (BTW Foyles states 'List Price: £13.99' which would be more reasonable for 6 CDs, and Countrybookshop and Large Print Bookshop 'Running Time: 480 minutes', i.e. 6 x 80 min). --Roglo 14:04, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
Interesting convention, and I proposed similar here - Al's open to suggestions, so maybe it's time to propose a new standard? It'll be him that has to change the code to remove the "pp". BLongley 16:08, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
Six CDs for £13.99 seems an absolute bargain, though, I wouldn't trust that as LIST price. E.g. some of the current Douglas Adams audiobooks are 2 CDs for £12.99, 3 for £15.99/£16.99, 8 CDs for £49.98: I think I paid over £30 for the 6 CD set a while ago so that must have been listed at nearer £50 at the time. And as usual: when in doubt, add notes. BLongley 16:08, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
I don't have SF audio CDs but some thrillers (Harlan Coben, Ian Rankin and some others) and usually they were £15 for 6 CDs without discounts. However David Mitchell was £20 for 5 CDs, so perhaps Banks is even more expensive (I see Amazon UK has 'Matter RRP: £21.14'; weird price. The Steep Approach to Garbadale was £24.99 but it was 11 CDs and still abridged). --Roglo 17:52, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
It's prices like "£21.14" that make me think Marc Kupper's insistence that ISBNs still indicate the country is a bogus claim nowadays - you only get prices like that when it's been currency-converted from somewhere else's list price. I see it's a "Hachette Audio" title - well, Hachette is a French Company owning US and UK publishers, so maybe there is a master price list somewhere that makes it seem reasonable. When we see the US title it may become clearer. Or someone can go check the French or Canadian sites. However, the original pub you updated was a nice round "£25.00" and doesn't show up on Amazon UK - I don't think any other country s using "£" so where does THAT data come from? 140550398X , I presume? BLongley 18:43, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
I have checked 140550398X and there is nothing in OCLC and nothing in the 98 UK library catalogs that I searched :( Ahasuerus 22:38, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
£25.00 is from Little, Brown website, i.e. from the publisher. Amazon UK has two audio editions at £25.00 and £21.14; ISBN 1405503890 and ISBN 140550398X, respectively. Fantastic Fiction lists both as UK editions. We have to wait and see... --Roglo 04:54, 20 Jan 2008 (CST)
Ah, I see why I thought it didn't appear on Amazon - the ISBN is actually entered as 978-1-4055-0389-1 and Al's recent ISBN code changes use that to look it up on Amazon. Unfortunately Amazon UK don't have 13-digit searches enabled yet. BLongley 07:18, 20 Jan 2008 (CST)
As for the standard proposal, I wonder if we should have 'AUDIO' ctype. If you have a single novella on CD, the choice is between NOVEL and CHAPBOOK and neither looks good. Also, we should somehow note 'abridged' vs. 'unabridged'. Using CD count is perhaps the simplest way of showing how long the recording is, though. --Roglo 17:52, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
I'm no expert on these: I've been given a few Pratchett cassette audio-books I can't even play currently, and if I do get around to listening to Audio-Books it'll probably be in-car, from burning my own CDs. BLongley 18:43, 19 Jan 2008 (CST)
And I've already seen MP3/WMA audio players with audiobooks prerecorded... --Roglo 04:54, 20 Jan 2008 (CST)

The Years of Rice and Salt

I have put this submission on hold since you would like to change the undated third printing of the June 2003 edition from "0000-00-00" to "2003-06-00". Are you sure that the third printing appeared in June 2003, the same as the first printing? It's not unheard of for publishers to come out with multiple printings of the same edition of a popular book in the same month, but it's fairly rare. Do you happen to have a copy of the book? TIA! Ahasuerus 20:25, 21 Jan 2008 (CST)

No, but most of books do not have the date of printing stated and we have to record the date of the edition instead. I do the same with my books - otherwise we would have most of the pubs dated as '0000'. I've checked following years in Locus index and there is no info on reprints. And anyway, a verifier will be able to updated this record if it is not correct. (BTW I was really interested in the maps, because I wanted to verify pub with maps by the same guy and the name was incorrect; I noticed the date '0000' with edition's date in the notes matching Locus/Amazon). --Roglo 02:23, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
If you have the publication then you can, and should, be a verifier. Please do not enter data you "assume" is correct or will make things "look nice" with the hope that someone else will come along and clean up after you. The problem for the verifier is that he/she will not know the source of the information in the ISFDB record. When verifying I make the assumption that the information already in the ISFDB record came from reliable sources. My personal experience is that nearly all of the data in ISFDB is accurate. Marc Kupper (talk) 03:02, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
I think it's safer to say that nearly all information in the ISFDB came from some source :) Some of these sources can be quite accurate, e.g. anything entered by our editors with access to physical copies tends to be in pretty good shape. Other sources like Contento are generally reliable, but we may not have interpreted his conventions (e.g. the way he records pseudonyms) correctly at the time we entered his data, so our data may not be 100% correct. Finally, certain sources like can be very unreliable, replete with typos, uniformly bad page counts (because they create records sight unseen based on publishers' announcements) and even records for non-existent books. Even the data entered by people with direct access to books can be a little flaky, especially if the verifier relied on the table of contents instead of checking the page numbers directly. And then there are the ever present data entry errors...
Also, keep in mind that some parts of the database are in a much better shape than others. To use magazines as an example, our Analogs were entered first and are a mess, although we are finally doing a cleanup pass. On the other hand, some of the recently entered magazines are pretty good shape. And so it goes :) Ahasuerus 10:39, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
Thus if an ISFDB record gives a date for a publication but I can't see that date in the publication then I'll usually leave the date in ISFDB but also add a note with what the publication states and that I'm unable to date it, and also that prior to verification the date was YYYY-MM but that the source of this information is unknown.
I agree - many records will have a date of 0000-00-00. Something I do is I'll add a publication note that says something like
Undated 4th printing that states "First Printing, July 1983 / 4 5 6 7 8 9".
Hopefully, Some day we will be able to enter the first printing date and printing # into ISFDB. At that point the 0000-00-00 for the printing date will become less onerous as the display code will be able to sort by the first printing date and printing # if the printing date is not available. For now, I enter the information into the comments so that later when the first-printing date and printing # fields get added that I won't need to physically re-scan my books.
My general rule of thumb is that publication records should reflect and match what is stated in the publication. If I make assumptions or derivations then I'll cite my sources/methods in the publication notes. For example, a publication may state an SBN. I'll convert that into an ISBN, check that the ISBN is valid, and if so will enter the ISBN but also add a note that the publication stated "SBN xyzz" and that ISBN xyzzy was derived from this. I usually also add a note explaining the lack of information. For example, a common one for older publications is "The cover artist is not credited nor is a signature visible" so that people will know I searched for the artist name and could not locate it. Marc Kupper (talk) 03:02, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
That's right. To quote our Help pages:
For books, to identify the year, try to spot a statement (often on the verso of the title page) that says something like "Published in June 2001"; the copyright date is often misleading, since works can be reprinted. Look out for signs that this is a reprint; indications often include a series of numbers (e.g. "3 4 5 6 7 8 9") at the bottom of the verso of the title page; this particular string indicates that this is a third printing. If you know you are holding a reprint, and there is no way to date that particular publication, leave the year field as 0000-00-00. It is sometimes possible to find dates of reprints from subsequent printings which list all printings and their associated dates; if you enter a date from a source like this, include a note explaining your deduction. Note that we are interested in recording each different reprint of a publication, since there can be some significant differences between them, such as cover art, or price.
Not only do later printings can use a different price and different cover art, they can also use a different ISBN, a different introduction or, in many British cases, even a different imprint (!), so we really have little choice but to capture all data at the printing level as opposed to the edition level.
Admittedly, "0000-00-00" looks pretty ugly and messes up the display order on the Title page, so there have been some attempted workarounds, but no better standard has emerged so far. As Marc indicated above, what we really need is a new field for "printing number", but Al's ISFDB time has been very limited lately :( Luckily, there are various ways of identifying the date when an undated printing appeared, e.g. later printings will sometimes list the dates of all earlier printings. Ahasuerus 10:39, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
OK, but for me it makes the data less useful. I'm not really interested in the dates of the printings (as usually they are not stated anyway and most of the dates I see in ISFDB are IMHO edition's dates); I'm more interested in recent editions and their contents. And having the edition's date displayed on the Title page (if the stated printing date is missing) and printing info in the note field is more useful for me. (BTW I believe even single printing can have multiple cover versions.) --Roglo 11:24, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
Granted, in many cases printings can be almost indistinguishable, but consider these two printings of Alexei Panshin's Star Well. The first one appeared in October 1968, the catalog ID was G-756, the price was $0.50, the page count was 157 and the cover was done by Frank Kelly Freas. The second one was published in August 1978, it used an ISBN (0-441-78405-4) instead of an old style catalog ID, the price was $1.75, the page count was viii+211 and the cover was done by Vincent Di Fate. So here we have two books that are as different as any two paperbacks can be, yet according to the publisher they are two printings of the same edition!
When dealing with a later printing of an edition that we don't have on file, we usually create two separate Publication records. The first record is for the actual printing that you are verifying and it should be dated 0000-00-00 if you don't know that printing's publication date. The second record is for the first printing of the edition and is created based on the publication information found in the later printing, with the source of information clearly stated in the Notes field and the record left unverified. That way we capture as much information as possible and our users can get a pretty good idea of the history of that edition. Unfortunately, this approach doesn't work too well when the imprint was (deviously) changed in between printings, so it's not a rule but rather a guideline of limited applicability :) Ahasuerus 12:24, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
Thanks, this seems much better :-) And there is second record for this edition (though has no notes). So please reject The Years of Rice and Salt update. --Roglo 13:00, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
Done, thanks! Ahasuerus 13:34, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
You might see more information than just first printing date: the first printing is good to have, so I'd create that if we didn't have it, as suggested above. Any unverified printings that are entered into ISFDB anyway could do with an extra note saying "date confirmed from Nth printing". But it's not always necessary to create ALL the missing printings, especially with a publication like this which would instantly fill up a screen with unpaginated, unpriced, uncatalogue-numbered editions. (Remember to remove any details that the later printing does NOT confirm.) If there's just two or three missing printings referred to, spaced well apart, I might have a stab at finding them on a book-seller or bibliographers site and entering them: but some editors are against every printing being represented here, every EDITION is enough. And when you look at pubs like this, where a book is reprinted several times a MONTH with no changes except on the copyright page, you can understand why. (I must go do cover scans for those...) BLongley 16:12, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
Ahasuerus had written above "Finally, certain sources like can be very unreliable, replete with typos, uniformly bad page counts (because they create records sight unseen based on publishers' announcements) and even records for non-existent books."
There one slighly murky aspect of Amazon I have mined for useful data at times. Amazon generally has one record per ISBN and since 1980 publishers have been in the habit of keeping the ISBN the same when they reprint. When there is a reprint the publisher often includes the reprint date in the data record they upload to Amazon for that ISBN. Thus what I'll do for an undated publication is to look at Amazon and see what the date is. It that date seems to line up with other factors of publication, such as it's price, or that cool early 1970s graphic cover, then I will use that date in ISFDB though include a huge fat note about this and also date it. For example, let's say I have a copy of Sword and Sorceress that shows "First Printing May 1984 / 5 6 7 8 9 10" and is priced at $3.95 with ISBN 0-88677-359-8. I don't know the date for this publication but Amazon's record for the ISBN shows a July 1, 1986 date. I know that July-1986 was the transition time from $3.50 to $3.95 and so it's quite likely my undated publication was printed in July 1986 and so will use that date but also wrote a note explaining with I found on Amazon, etc. I'll also date the notes so that if someone later looks at Amazon and there's a different date they won't get too confused.
One of the back burner projects is to create a list of paperback prices and the range of time various publishers used those prices for the printings which can be dated reliably. I thought there was such a page on ISFDB for one of the publishers but can't recall where it is. The idea being that if you have a publication that's priced at $1.75 then you will at least have a general range of when it was printed.
Are you thinking of this? I didn't get much feedback on it at the time, but if it's useful let's pull it out and put it somewhere more stable/findable. BLongley 18:18, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)
That looks very nice Bill - it got put up at a time when I was snowed under and I never saw it until just now. Marc Kupper (talk) 04:08, 2 Apr 2008 (CDT)
Even further on the back burner is figuring out a way for every single data field to also have a "source reliability" flag that would be one of "Stated in publication" "Second source" "derived" "estimated" and for the latter states to also be able to have notes citing the source or methods used. I know this is technically doable but have not figured out a clean user interface. Marc Kupper (talk) 17:38, 22 Jan 2008 (CST)

Corsairs of the Second Ether

You make a good point about this one, it is split into three sections in Blood. Which also contains other pieces from New Worlds (Colour and Free States are also part of the novel). I'll have to have a think about this one. --Unapersson 15:45, 24 Jan 2008 (CST)

Swiat na krawedzi

FYI< I have approved the changes to Swiat na krawedzi and then changed the page count from 273 to 272 as per MELVYL, the Library of Congress, the National Library of Poland and another dozen+ libraries which all agreed that it was 272.

By the way, I see that you maintain a mini-list of online biblio sources on your User page. Have you seen our Sources of Bibliographic Information page? Ahasuerus 15:24, 26 Jan 2008 (CST)

Yes, but I find it useful to keep a few links handy on my page. Thanks! --Roglo 11:28, 27 Jan 2008 (CST)

The Dog Said Bow-Wow and The Starry Rift

I have approved these two submissions, but I think the consensus on placeholder page numbers has been that they tend to be misleading. It's probably best to delete them until we know what the actual numbers are. Thanks! Ahasuerus 08:17, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)

OK, I'll delete them after title merges are accepted. --Roglo 11:44, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)
I've approved most, but Urudumheim/Urdumheim looks a bit suspect - no problems with the title, just the date. 2007-09-01 looks a bit TOO specific, and the verified Magazine publication is a month or two later. How sure are you? BLongley 16:33, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)
This is really problem with dating of the magazines: 2007-09-01 is Amazon's date of the collection with the story; this story was also printed in Oct/Nov issue of F&SF. And this issue is dated 2007-11-00 for some mysterious reason (well, it has 'Display until Oct 29' on the cover, as if it was a November issue). So we have a Collection from September (Locus also has September date for this one) and Oct/Nov issue of the magazine which was supposed to be the first publication. Which date should be used? --Roglo 16:58, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)
I really don't trust Amazon dates - especially ones where the month or day is "1". It was only last year that they started allowing unknown Month and Day to be entered when people were correcting data. I know, I was forced to enter "valid" dates when correcting some of their worst errors - so they may actually have learned something from US! Anyway, I'm not holding your submission or anything, just thought I'd bring it up for discussion. I'm not used to near-simultaneous Magazine/Book publications, but someone more clued-up on magazines may have no problem with it and can explain things to me. BLongley 17:39, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)
I agree that's dates are often bad, but Locus is generally a more reliable source since they record the date when they first saw anu given publication as well as the stated publication date (when available). Keep in mind, though, that the link that Roglo posted is to the Locus "Directories" page, which is "compiled independently of Locus Magazine's comprehensive listings and indexes", so I suppose the methodology may be slightly different. In any case, the difference between the two dates is not that great, so we can probably go with either one as long as we document our sources in the Notes field. Always something :) Ahasuerus 20:10, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)
I don't think the collection's date is incorrect, but rather that F&SF is shipping very early. This F&SF Oct/Nov I got on 2007-09-19 (in Poland) and I usually get it quite late, so probably you could find it at Forbidden Planet (London) before Sep 1 (they had issue June 2007 in April). And even earlier in the US. We can set the date as 2007-10-00 and add a note that F&SF could be the official first publication, despite the September collection. --Roglo 01:22, 29 Jan 2008 (CST) (edited by --Roglo 10:13, 29 Jan 2008 (CST))
Fine by me. I haven't bought magazines new for decades, and haven't even been in Forbidden Planet for a few years - I much prefer to visit Fantasy Centre now. BLongley 13:05, 29 Jan 2008 (CST)

The Starry Rift: Tales of New Tomorrows

I am guessing you were clearing out the page numbers since the edition hasn't been released yet but it looks like the system put some bogus page numbers in there to keep the stories in order. At least I guess that's what happened.--swfritter 20:02, 28 Jan 2008 (CST)

Yes, clearing them was required by Ahasuerus. --Roglo 01:25, 29 Jan 2008 (CST)
I've asked Al. --Roglo 14:08, 29 Jan 2008 (CST)

Dzienniki gwiazdowe

I have approved the 1982 edition of Dzienniki gwiazdowe, but I wonder about a few stories, "Ratujmy kosmos: (List otwarty Ijona Tichego)", "Profesor A. Dońda: (Ze wspomnień Ijona Tichego)" and "V: (Tragedia pralnicza)". Do their titles really have both colons and parentheses? Thanks! Ahasuerus 17:11, 31 Jan 2008 (CST)

No, this is title and subtitle, where subtitle is printed in parentheses:
RATUJMY KOSMOS               [capitalized but it depend on edition]
(List otwarty Ijona Tichego) [not capitalized or smaller font]
I try to preserve information about this layout, as parentheses are used also for information added by editors. --Roglo 03:20, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
No worries, just making sure it's not a cut-and-paste problem :) Ahasuerus 04:16, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
BTW what is the preferred version of recording subtitles: Title : Subtitle or Title: Subtitle ? The first variant (like in LoC) makes it clear that the colon is not part of the title but a separator. But I usually see the second variant (Locus, Amazon and often in ISFDB). --Roglo 03:20, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
Libraries generally store their cataloging data in what is known as the MARC21 format or some national version thereof, although a few major libraries in Europe are still using incompatible standards like SUTRS. The MARC family of standards is rather complex and supports hundreds of fields and subfields to accommodate all possible flavors of books, research papers, movies, etc, etc. Subtitles and other title related data elements are often stored in separate fields and are concatenated for display purposes. When a library's display software concatenates subfields together, e.g. "title" and "subtitle" or "place of publication" (260$a) and "name of publisher" (260$b), it usually uses a space, a colon and a space to separate them, hence the "ABC : XYZ" format that you often see in catalogs. On the other hands, genre bibliographers generally use only a colon and a space to indicate subtitles, so the same example would appear as "ABC: XYZ" in a typical SF bibliography or encyclopedia.
Some of our data comes from library catalogs, so you will occasionally see the "ABC : XYZ" format in the ISFDB, but generally we use the "ABC: XYZ" format. (Come to think of it, this is probably another fledgling FAQ question ;-) Ahasuerus 04:16, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
Thanks for the explanation. I use the "Title: Subtitle" format but I have doubts whenever I see something like this or June 2001: And the Moon Be Still as Bright where colon is printed as part of the title. --Roglo 10:30, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
"Temeraire: Black Powder War" only on the cover I see, which is no evidence of what's on the title page. Even if the title page mixed Series and Title name confusingly, I'd probably not create such a variant title e.g. this edition makes it clear what the title is, and what series it belongs to. As it stands, the variant looks similar to a theoretical "Temeraire / Black Powder War" Omnibus to me. BLongley 13:23, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
Hm, Voyager website seems to think Temeraire is the title and Black Powder War is the subtitle here. --Roglo 14:09, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
First rule of ISFDB - "Trust No One"! (Or was that the X-Files?) Anyway, never trust a publisher's site about anything historical. the author's(?) site? seems to be clearer about the author's intentions. BLongley 14:45, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
Total side-track: Second Rule of ISFDB - "Tell everyone about ISFDB!" (Or was that London Pillow Fight Club ripping off someone else's idea?) Third rule of ISFDB - "An editor must protect its own existence, unless such protection conflicts with the First or Second Rule" (now that sounds distinctly wrong, not sure where though...) still, if I ramble any longer I'll get into Monty Python mode and quote the "No Poofters!" rule or the reasons why the Spanish Inquisition Moderators are still to be feared. BLongley 14:45, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)
Allowing PUBS to keep an embedded series name doesn't cause too many problems, but when titles have it in it can cause problems with links to reviews. I've recently had to rename everything in a 6-volume Star Trek series as somebody was trying to use a Series title, and numbers within the series, on each real title to ORDER the books: and this actually had no relationship to what was actually on title page - but our Series set-up allowed for that to be fixed. Unfortunately there are titles belonging to multiple series that can't be fixed yet, e.g. search for "Double Helix" Novels and see the 6-book subset in "Star Trek: The Next Generation Numbered" - it doesn't look too bad when they are at least consecutive in the parent series. But look at my comments here and you'll see that sometimes we really CAN'T keep a series in the title, you'd never be able to meaningfully display "Star Trek: Trek to Madworld" with a variant "Star Trek Adventures: Trek to Madworld" with a variant "Trek to Madworld" (for the review links - or do we have to go back to physical copies of all reviews to check which series the title reviewed was in, then adjust the review to match, and leave notes about the title?). Anyway, just a little rant about some times when IMO we should NOT use colonic irritations. (And a reminder I should check where Series Fixes are on AL's To-Do list.) BLongley 13:23, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)

The Eagle and the Crow: Modern Polish Short Stories

I have approved and massaged The Eagle and the Crow: Modern Polish Short Stories, but keep in mind that the Locus Index usually specifies two dates for each book it lists. The first one is the date when the book claims it was published and the second one, given in square brackets, is the date when the Locus received it. We generally record the official publication date (and add a Note if there is reason to believe that it appeared significantly earlier or later than stated), so I changed the date from 1997-00-00 to 1996-11-00. Thanks! Ahasuerus 12:53, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)

Thanks. Yes, it has 'First published 1996' in the Search Inside. --Roglo 13:38, 1 Feb 2008 (CST)

Altair, August 1999

I have approved Altair, August 1999 and Earth Is But a Star, but I was wondering about a couple of things. Was Rob Riel's "Pome" spelled that way? And was the capitalization of subtitles in Earth Is But a Star done that way on purpose? Finally, I have Gardens of the Moon on hold since you are changing Corgi to Bantam. Are we sure that it's the same publication and not a different one? Thanks! Ahasuerus 16:14, 4 Feb 2008 (CST)

Gardens of the Moon is a UK edition, which is on Amazon UK displayed as Bantam Books (as my UK mass market pbs of Erikson are) and on Amazon US as by Corgi with later date (the same UK cover, no list price). Publisher's site has 'Bantam', too.
I wouldn't trust an Amazon to get a publisher correct, they've been working backwards from who owns the ISBN ranges NOW to assign publishers to books. :-/ The Bantam imprint is owned by Transworld now (who in turn are owned by Bertelsmann and work within the Random House Group) but they don't currently use the Corgi Imprint for SF any more as far as I can see - the last Corgi SF book they list is Acorna's Triumph from 2005, and we don't record any Corgi version of that after 2004. Corgi is now a Children's paperback imprint of Random House. Of course, this means that titles like the Terry Pratchett Juveniles will still appear here as Corgi paperback books, but with Doubleday hardcover versions.... BLongley 14:44, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
Acorna is still being published as by Corgi. The last I've seen is Acorna's Children: Second Wave (2007) for some reason listed on Amazon UK as published by Corgi Adult (but is has the usual Corgi logo, and on the title page: Corgi Books). --Roglo 14:41, 14 Feb 2008 (CST)
Trust the pub, not Amazon! (Although in the case of Pocket I don't even trust the Pub... :-/ ) We really need to get the publisher pages going. I see Marc has started, I hope to add some stuff this weekend. BLongley 15:55, 14 Feb 2008 (CST)
And another Corgi, non-genre (I think) here, 2006. I've checked it in a bookshop, so it isn't just Amazon (but it is Corgi, not Corgi Adult). --Roglo 11:06, 19 Feb 2008 (CST)
This one debated here is 'forthcoming' reprint with the new-style cover, preceding hc of the new vol. 8. --Roglo 15:07, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
I'm beginning to believe the quality of "Forthcoming" data is so low we shouldn't attempt to bother with it. Yes, it makes a nice front page (when the cover-art is available) - we look "up-to-date" and "with-it" and "cool" and maybe "trendy" - but frankly few of the editors here even LOOK at it (swfritter had to be told it even EXISTED!). I used to make it a point to try and fix such preliminary entries when they were appearing on our front-page - I don't bother now. It seems we're in "editors-only" mode and the fact that nobody but me seems to care about how we look to the first-time user can wait. After all, all I have to do is STOP saying we're a useful site for a bit. If anyone is seriously interested I can explain "Advanced Search" instead... BLongley 19:22, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
Thanks, I have approved Gardens of the Moon and then changed the first sentence in the Notes field from "Forthcoming book" to "Pre-release data from Amazon UK and Transworld websites as of 2008-02-03". As far as Bill's points go, they are, unfortunately, accurate and we haven't made a concerted effort to clean up forthcoming books. Al generally vets Dissembler's submissions, but his time is limited, so things (e.g. series attributions and various Amazon quirks) have been known to fall through the cracks. Now that Al has agreed to let other moderators handle Dissembler submissions, the quality of our forthcoming data may improve. And a good thing too since quite a few users find the forthcoming section to be the most useful part of the database, at least based on unscientific internet sampling. Ahasuerus 22:48, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
Yes, and I use ISFDB as a shopping guide, too ;-). But it would be better if Dissembler added a note to its records, something like Pre-release data generated by Dissembler from website on YYYY-MM-DD so that editors could update the records later without assuming that someone knew better. --Roglo 03:20, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)
That's a very good point, let's see what Al has to say about it. Ahasuerus 10:31, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)
Al has agreed to modify the Dissembler code to put this information in the Notes field. As far as capitalization goes, I think the only scenarios when we consistently use lowercase are (a) when a Cartoons title is in the form of dialog and (b) when the author clearly meant to use case in a non-standard way. it's probably best to ask on the Standard page, though, in case I have missed a recent discussion. The Wiki has gotten so busy lately that I am having trouble keeping up. Ahasuerus 00:16, 9 Feb 2008 (CST)
As for Earth Is But a Star, I fixed the subtitles. --Roglo 16:28, 9 Feb 2008 (CST)
Thanks! Ahasuerus 19:13, 9 Feb 2008 (CST)
As for Earth Is But a Star, they are spelled like this in Locus index. I can regularize the subtitles if needed. I also think 451 • Star Drover • essay by Rosaleen Love should be shortfiction (here it is in Fiction section) but I haven't seen the text so I'm not sure (in Locus index it is classified as 'es' ).
I assume that lack of comment to this part means yes, regularize the subtitles. --Roglo 03:20, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)
Pome looks like a misspelled poem but that's how it is recorded in Locus index and the author wrote another poem titled Re** & Victim so perhaps Pome really is the title? --Roglo 13:40, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
"Pome" might be a Britishism - you might see "Flim" reviews as well. We like to confuse people that THINK they speak English ;-) BLongley 19:22, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)
See, I knew it was a conspiracy!! Ahasuerus 22:48, 5 Feb 2008 (CST)

I Am Legend

I see that you would like to Unmerge I Am Legend (Matherson's 1954 novel) from an I Am Legend publication. Unfortunately, the Approval screen only shows the title (but not the ID) of the publication that the unmerge affects, so I am not which publication is affected. Could you please post the URL of the pub? Thanks! Ahasuerus 12:01, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)

This is the pub. It is really a collection (I've added contents and more notes to a pre-existing record; I suspect that this is tp variant of the same (Amazon dates and physical page counts match) but I have never seen it so I unmerge only my pb. I noticed that there's this I Am Legend (collection) title for collection so I'm going to merge my pub with it. --Roglo 12:38, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)
Ah, I see, thanks! Yes, that's the correct title to merge your publication with and it has the same contents. Also, I have checked OCLC and the October 2007 trade paperback has the same contents as well, so I have merged it with the collection Title. The only thing to keep in mind is that the Collection publications that include Novel Title show up both under their Collection Title and under the Novel Title record. When you see a Collection Publication appear when you display a Novel Title's detailed data, it's easy to assume that it's out of place and needs to be unmerged even though it's actually displayed correctly. It's too late to tell whether that's what originally happened in this case since I approved your submission half an hour ago and then reshuffled/cloned various associated pubs and titles, but it's something to keep in mind going forward :) Other than that I think we are fine now. Thanks! Ahasuerus 13:26, 6 Feb 2008 (CST)

Missing publisher pages

Creation of publisher pages to replace any of the temporarily missing (due to the new namespaces) pages will cause problems reclaiming the old pages. Please be careful not to create pages for publishers (or authors, or magazines) unless you are sure that there was not a page existi,g by the same name as of yeasterday. See ISFDB:Community Portal#Namespace problem for more detail. -DES Talk 17:08, 1 Mar 2008 (CST)

Thanks. How can I check if the page existed, when I see a blank page now? --Roglo 17:13, 1 Mar 2008 (CST)
Go to Special:Allpages and enter the name of the page you are looking for, or anythign that comes before it alphabetically. if it is listed, it existed and may be "in hiding", this is a list of all the "in hiding" Publisher pages, and this is a list of the "in hiding" author pages. -DES Talk 17:28, 1 Mar 2008 (CST)
Thanks! --Roglo 03:01, 2 Mar 2008 (CST)
For now please hold off on creating/editing with namespace style names other than ISFDB:. For example, there already was a page for Publisher:DAW. I believe Al's working on recovering the pages. Marc Kupper (talk) 17:50, 1 Mar 2008 (CST)


As far as I can tell, you are getting very close to the point of self-sufficiency ISFDB-wise. You understand anthologies/collections, variant titles and pseudonyms, you communicate well, and you do not hesitate to ask questions. Do you think you are ready to start approving your own submissions? If you do, I can nominate you for moderator. Of course, a moderator can also approve other editors' submissions, but there is no expectation of doing so on a regular basis since we all have different schedules and time budgets. (Yes, I know, it's a cut-and-paste from DaveCat's Talk page from earlier today, but I have a headache and have to conserve energy for my never ending wanderings ;-) Ahasuerus 12:57, 29 Mar 2008 (CDT)

P.S. In case you haven't run into it yet, we have a Moderator Qualifications page. Ahasuerus 13:05, 29 Mar 2008 (CDT)
Yes, thank you, I believe I could approve my own submissions, at least those involving publications I've added (or added contents listing). It would speed up editing of collections. I'm currently in low activity mode - I hope I'll be able to edit more starting from late April. --Roglo 13:47, 30 Mar 2008 (CDT)
Congratulations, you are now a moderator! Take a look at Help:Screen:Moderator and poke around the Submission Queue, which should be now visible in the navbar on the left :) Ahasuerus 23:22, 4 Apr 2008 (CDT)
Thank you! I certainly will :) --Roglo 11:55, 5 Apr 2008 (CDT)

Verified Pub, F&SF Feb. 2008

Added cover image to your verified pub Magazine of F&SF, Feb. 2008.--Rkihara 17:16, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

Thanks! --Roglo 20:40, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

your verified Halting State

I have a copy of Halting State, the same printing that you verified. You mentioned in the notes that the Amazon cover displayed is slightly different. Would you object if i scanned and uploded the exact cover, and changed the notes accordingly? -DES Talk 11:41, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

No objections, go ahead! Thanks. --Roglo 14:28, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

Welcome back!

Good to see you are alive and well !:) Ahasuerus 23:59, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks! Nice to see you in good condition, too! I was woken up by the CVS commits :) I have installed the current version locally but I will have to go off-line the next week. --Roglo 07:37, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Sorry to spoil your hibernation! Hope we're not being too noisy with the fixing and the hammering and the moaning and the complaining. BLongley 22:01, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Your hammering is loud and heard everywhere! Wherever I go, I see links to ISFDB :) --Roglo 15:53, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction: Volume Two

I changed the cover image link to replace a broken link on your verified pub of The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction: Volume Two. Let me know if the image is not correct. -DES Talk 15:29, 8 August 2010 (UTC)

Changes to user rights

Just to let you know that at one point there was a discussion of the best way to handle inactive moderators over on ISFDB talk:Policy. The executive summary of the discussion is that a moderator who hasn't been active for a over a year will have a hard time keeping up with all the policy and software changes that we have been going through. ISFDB:Policy has been updated accordingly and, since you haven't been active since mid-2009, I have turned your "moderator" flag off, so when you come back, you won't be able to approve submissions. No need to panic, though :-) as we have a list of Moderator Qualifications and you can reclaim the ability to approve submissions once you go through the process. Hope to see you again when you have time for ISFDB! Ahasuerus 01:16, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction: Volume Two

Replaced the amazon scan for your verified here. Hauck 17:17, 21 June 2011 (UTC)