Genus, species, and ISBN

Jiri Ludvik has identified a new class of LibraryLookup-compatible OPACs: Talis systems. I'll go ahead and derive a service list from that page, and add Talis to the bookmarklet generator, but Jiri's contribution raises another ISBN complication.

Consider the book Guns, Germs, and Steel. The discussion on All Consuming is keyed to this paperback edition: 393317552. The hardcover edition in my library is 0393038912. But the UK libraries served by Talis use neither of these. The UK equivalents appear to be 0099302780 and 061318114X. So when I tried Jiri's bookmarklet, it seemed broken. But from the perspective of, it works fine!

Live and learn. A while back I proposed an ISBN-mapping Web service:

Given an ISBN (for, say, a mass market paperback), it would map from species to genus, collect all species in the genus, and return a list of ISBNS (paperback, hardcover, audiocassette, etc.)

That looks increasingly necessary, if services like LibraryLookup and All Consuming want to be universal rather than parochial.

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