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Online Dictionary for Library and Information Science

by Joan M. Reitz
Now available in print! Order a copy of the hardcover or paperback from Libraries Unlimited.

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See: readers' advisory.

race records
A term first used in an advertisement in a 1922 issue of the Chicago Defender, an African-American newspaper, to described 78 rpm phonograph records made by and for African-American audiences during the early 20th century, particularly the 1920s and 1930s, devoted primarily to Black music genres, such as blues, jazz, and gospel music, with some comedy (see this advertisement).

radio button
An element of a graphical user interface which allows the user to choose one and only one of a predetermined set of options. Displayed in groups of two or more, radio buttons usually appear as small circles, containing white space when unselected or a solid dot when selected (see this example). A brief caption is displayed adjacent to each button, describing the choice represented. When a radio button is selected by clicking the circle or caption with the mouse (or by executing a keyboard shortcut), any previously selected button in the same group is automatically deselected. The term is derived from the physical buttons used to select stations on old car radios, which popped out when another button was pressed. Synonymous with option button.

radio frequency identification
See: RFID.

An image produced by exposing a photosensitive surface (film or plate) to radiation other than visible light (X-rays, gamma rays, neutrons) through an opaque object. Varying degrees of absorption of the radiation produce a shadow image of internal structures (click here to see a radiograph of a human wrist and hand). Collected mainly by medical libraries, radiographs are cataloged in AACR2 as graphic materials. They are also used in the study of watermarks. Synonymous with X-ray photograph.

radio play
An original drama or dramatic adaptation written for broadcast through the medium of radio. Because the action in a radio play is heard but not seen by the audience, the dramatist must use auditory props (sound effects) and the actors must rely on qualities of voice (tone, pitch, loudness, etc.) to convey emotion. A famous example is the broadcast by Orson Welles of the H.G. Wells story War of the Worlds on CBS on October 30, 1938, which caused panic among listeners who accepted it as fact. Click here to see a pair of Sherlock Homes radio plays by Anthony Boucher (pseudonym of William Anthony Parker White), a writer and a critic of science fiction and mystery fiction (Lilly Library, Indiana University).

rag book
See: cloth book.

Refers to a page of type with lines of variable length, usually ragged right, set flush (aligned) with the left-hand margin but unjustified on the right, as in the lines of a poem.

rag paper
Paper made from cotton and/or linen rags, stronger and more permanent than paper made from wood pulp and most other fibers but also more expensive. Rag content is usually indicated as a percentage. Paper made from 100 percent rag fiber is called all-rag. See also: bible paper.

railway edition
An inexpensive edition of a popular work (fiction, biography, history, etc.), often printed in pocket-size format, for sale to train travelers at bookstalls in railroad stations during the 19th century. Synonymous with railway library edition.

A slip issued with a shipment of materials when the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) does not have enough copies of the document for distribution to all the depository libraries in the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) that have selected it. The raincheck informs the depository that a claim should not be filed for the missing item because a copy will be sent as soon as the publication is reprinted.

raised bands
Narrow, slightly elevated ridges visible at intervals across the spine of a hand-bound book, produced by the underlying sewing supports to which the sections are attached. Click here to see raised bands on the spine of a 17th-century leather binding (Special Collections, Glasgow University Library, BD2-h.2) and here to see a 16th-century example decorated in gilt (Royal Library of Denmark). On some bindings, raised bands were made more prominent by nipping up the leather on either side, as the covering material was applied. In this example, the single-thong sewing supports beneath the raised bands are exposed (Princeton University Library). When faked on a decorative binding, raised ridges are called false bands. Compare with sunk bands. See also: smooth spine.

raised capital
In printing, an initial letter, usually at the beginning of the first paragraph of a chapter, projecting above the line of type on which it appears. Synonymous with cocked-up initial. Compare with drop initial.

See: random access memory.

Fiber of the Asiatic plant species Baehmeria nivea, in the nettle family, one of the most durable materials for weaving and papermaking, used in printing bank notes. Click here to learn more about the plant in Wikipedia. See also: rag paper.

random access memory (RAM)
A group of high-speed memory chips that perform most of the processing in a computer, allowing users to access bytes of data in any order, rather than sequentially. At startup, the operating system and any application programs are routinely loaded from the hard disk into RAM to allow processing to begin. Any data in current use is also stored in RAM. To retain their content, RAM chips must have electric power, which is why users must save data to a slower storage medium (hard disk, floppy disk, Zip disk, etc.) before powering down. Click here to learn more about RAM, courtesy of HowStuffWorks. See also: buffer.

Ranganathan, S(hiyali) R(amamrita) (1892-1972)
A former mathematics professor who, after receiving an honors certificate in library science from the University of London in 1925, served as first librarian of the University of Madras until 1944, where he developed Colon Classification (1933), a classification system used in research libraries worldwide.

Ranganathan's pioneering work in library education established him as the "father" of librarianship in India. He helped found the Indian Library Association in 1933 and served as its president from 1944 to 1953. From 1948 to 1958 he served on the Indian national committee for cooperation with UNESCO, focusing his attention on issues of concern to libraries, and from 1951 to 1962 he was rapporteur-general for the documentation classification section of the International Federation for Documentation.

In 1956, Ranganathan gave his life savings to endow a professorship in library science at the University of Madras, the first such chair outside the United States. In 1962, he used the royalties from his books to establish an endowment for annual lectures given in India by eminent contributors to library science from around the world. He is famous for his Five Laws of Library Science (1931):

1. Books are for use.
2. Every reader his book.
3. Every book its reader.
4. Save the time of the reader.
5. A library is a growing organism.

Click here to read Eugene Garfield's tribute to S.R. Ranganathan (Current Comments, February 6, 1984).

A component of a library stack, consisting of a row of two or more sections of single- or double-faced fixed or adjustable shelving, with common uprights or shelf supports between sections. The row may be free-standing or assembled against a wall.

Also refers to the difference between the largest value and the smallest in a given set of numerical data, for example, a publication date range (example: 1950-1960) specified by the user in a search of an online catalog or bibliographic database to limit retrieval to items published within a certain period.

range aisle
The narrow corridor or passageway between two ranges of shelves in the stacks of a library. In the United States, the standard minimum aisle width in new and renovated facilities is 36 inches. Some kinds of compact shelving allow the distance between ranges to be adjusted as needed. Synonymous with stack aisle. Compare with cross aisle.

range line
One of the two north-south boundaries of a township in the United States surveyed under the Public Land Survey System (PLSS). Range lines are numbered east and west of the principal meridian used in the survey (click here to see an illustration, courtesy of GeoSTAC).

Any one of a number of grades of employment within a library or library system, reflecting the qualifications, experience, skill, and length of tenure of the person occupying the position to which the rank applies, usually associated with a given rate or range of compensation. In academic libraries at institutions that grant faculty status to librarians, the ranks are usually Instructor, Assistant Librarian, Associate Librarian, and Librarian. Ranks for library staff who do not hold the M.L.S. or M.L.I.S. degree are based on technical skill and experience. See also: promotion.

Also, to put a series of items, records, citations, applications, etc., in sequence based on one or more evaluative criteria such as relevance, usefulness, merit, etc. The presence of an option allowing users to select search results ranked by relevance is a mark of sophistication in database search software. Compare with sorting.

In information retrieval, the presentation of search results in a sequence based on one or more criteria that, in some systems, the user may specify in advance. The most common are currency (publication date) and relevance, usually determined by the number of occurrences of the search terms typed as input and their location in the record (in title, descriptors, abstract, or text). Compare with sorting. See also: weighting.

See: Regional Alliance for Preservation.

rare book
A book so difficult to find that only a few copies are known to antiquarian booksellers. Those that do exist seldom appear on the market and are consequently coveted. Rare books are often valuable, but not all highly valuable books are rare. Most libraries keep their rare books in a secure location to which access is restricted (usually in special collections). Very rare books are sold at book auctions and by dealers serving collectors (see for example the Philadelphia Rare Books & Manuscripts Company). For a detailed discussion of the history of rare book libraries, see the entry by Daniel Traister in the International Encyclopedia of Information and Library Science (Routledge, 2003). Many libaries are digitizing images from their rare books collections (see this exhibition by the Missouri Botanical Garden Library). Rules for cataloging rare books are given in Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Books, 2nd edition (Library of Congress Cataloging Distribution Service, 1991). The Rare Book School at the University of Virginia is the only one if its kind in the United States. See also: first edition, incunabula, price guide, and Rare Books and Manuscripts Section.

Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS)
Created in 1948 as a special committee of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), RBMS exercises leadership in local, national, and international special collections communities to represent and promote the interests of librarians, curators, and other specialists concerned with the acquisition, organization, security, preservation, administration, and use of special collections, including rare books and manuscripts, archives, graphic materials, music, ephemera, etc. RBMS publishes the semiannual RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage and the semiannual RBMS Newsletter. Click here to connect to the RBMS homepage.

rare map
Rarity in maps depends on the history of the country or region depicted. As a general rule, any map of the United States published before 1900 is considered rare, especially if it depicts an area west of the Rocky Mountains. In Great Britain, a map is considered rare if published prior to 1825. As historical documents, rare maps are often of considerable interest to scholars and collectors. They can also be aesthetically pleasing. Click here to view a 16th-century manuscript map of the world (Special Collections, Glasgow University Library, MS Hunter 492) and here to see an example from an illustrated edition of Ptolemaeus' Cosmographia, printed from woodblocks and hand-colored in 1482 (Wikipedia). A Map of New England was the first map printed in America, from a woodcut by John Foster in 1677 (Osher Map Library, University of Southern Maine). To see other examples, try the Yahoo! list of historical map collections. Compare with old map.

The degree to which a book, map, or other item is scarce or uncommon, which, in combination with its age, condition, and aesthetic qualities, helps determine its value in the market place. In the antiquarian book trade, degrees of rarity are generally classified as follows:

Scarce - comes to the attention of an expert in rare books no more than once in a year
Rare - comes to the attention of an expert once in a decade
Very rare - comes to the attention of an expert once in a lifetime
Unique - one-of-a-kind, no other copies known to exist

See also: Rare Books and Manuscripts Section and rare map.

raster data
Digital data represented as a cellular grid matrix composed of rows and columns (a raster) representing space as a continuum (example: a digitally scanned image or photograph). Each cell or pixel in the matrix is referenced by an x, y coordinate stored as an identifier to which values can be assigned to indicate the magnitude of attributes in space. A group of cells with the same value represents a map feature, for example, terrain of a given elevation class. Georaster data is georeferenced, either to the globe or to a specified map projection, each pixel of data representing a known patch of territory on the surface of the earth. The same cell in another matrix of similar specifications referenced to the same space can be used to represent data of a different type, permitting the accumulation of layers of data. A digital elevation model (DEM) is a raster data set of elevation values derived from a printed topographic map (click here to see an example). Because a line defined by a group of pixels along its length requires more file space than a line defined by a vector, certain map features are more economically stored as digital line graphs (vector data) than as digital raster graphics.

rate adjustment
A change in the price of a serial subscription that occurs after the publisher or vendor has billed the library, usually handled with either a supplemental invoice or credit memo.

See: content rating and library rating.

raw data
Data collected from a source, which has not yet been manipulated or processed by a computer. Synonymous with primary data.

raw stock
See: stock.

See: Reference Books Bulletin.

See: Rare Books and Manuscripts Section.

See: Resources for College Libraries.

See: Resource Description and Access.

Rea Award for the Short Story
An annual literary award established in 1986 by the late Michael M. Rea, writer and passionate reader and collector of short stories, to honor a living American or Canadian writer who has made a significant contribution to the short story form. The award is given not for a specific title, but rather for literary power, originality, and influence on the genre. Previous winners include Eudora Welty, Paul Bowles, and Joyce Carol Oates. Recipients of the $30,000 prize are nominated and selected by a jury of distinguished writers. Click here to learn more about the Rea Award.

In typography, the characteristics of a typeface that make it easy for the human eye to read large blocks of printed matter, in contrast to legibility, which allows the eye to comprehend a few words or phrases on a page rapidly and accurately. As a general rule, roman typefaces have the highest readability and sans-serifs the highest legibility. Most italic typefaces are too light to be readable en masse. Nearly all typefaces lose readability in condensation.

In literary composition, prose written in a style that makes the content easy to comprehend. Some publishers use a fog index to measure readability.

Capable of being read. Also refers to reading material that is interesting and written in a style that makes the content easy for most readers to comprehend. Sometimes used synonymously with legible. See also: fog index.

read aloud marathon
An event in which participants take turns reading aloud without interruption in an attempt to exceed a previously established record length of time. In June 2005, six librarians from the Henderson District Public Libraries in Nevada read aloud nonstop for 100 hours, breaking the standing world record of 81 hours. To meet the requirements of The Guinness Book of World Records, an audience had to be present at all times. The event also served a fundraising purpose, bringing in about $6,000 to support HDPL's Mobile Extension Library, a service that makes books available to patrons in rural areas. Compare with read-a-thon.

A contraction of reading marathon, a school or library event in which young readers are given an incentive to read a certain number of pages or books within a designated period of time. The event may be tied to fund-raising, with sponsors pledged to contribute a certain amount to a worthy cause when the reading goal is met. Click here to learn about Readathon in the UK. Compare with read alound marathon.

A person who reads silently to himself (or herself) or aloud to others, from a book other other written or printed source, or an electronic medium displaying text. One of the primary goals of libraries is to encourage reading and literacy. Reading preferences are of particular interest to publishers who use survey techniques to measure them. See also: new adult reader, nonreader, and reluctant reader.

In publishing, a person asked to read and evaluate for potential publication manuscripts submitted by authors and their agents. Large publishing houses often employ a first reader to screen incoming manuscripts and select those deemed worthy of further consideration, usually by specialists. In printing, a person responsible for reading proofs and comparing them with the original copy to detect typographical errors, a process called proofreading. Also, a person who volunteers or is paid to read a book onto audiotape for distribution as an audiobook, sometimes the author but more often a professionally trained actor or actress.

In special libraries, a staff member responsible for scanning current materials to select items for routing to persons within the organization who have requested current awareness service, based on their interest profiles.

Also refers to a textbook containing reading exercises, especially one intended for young schoolchildren (click here to see early examples, courtesy of the Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas). Synonymous in this sense with primer.

A machine designed for enlarging, viewing, and making printed copies of microforms (microfiche, microfilm, microopaque), usually coin-operated (fee varies). Libraries with microform holdings usually provide at least one reader-printer for patron use. Compare with photocopier. See also: copy card.

readers' advisory (RA)
Services provided by an experienced public services librarian who specializes in the reading needs of the patrons of a public library. A readers' advisor recommends specific titles and/or authors, based on knowledge of the patron's past reading preferences, and may also compile lists of recommended titles and serve as liaison to other education agencies in the community. The same type of information is provided by reference works such as Reader's Adviser: A Layman's Guide to Reading published by Bowker. For genre fiction, the standard guide is Genreflecting: A Guide to Reading Interests in Genre Fiction (Libraries Unlimited, 2000) by Diana Tixier Herald. For online readers' advisory, try Find a Good Book: If You Like... from the Hennepin County Library, or Book Browser from Barnes & Noble. Readers' advisory for juveniles is usually provided by a librarian specializing in services for children or young adults, based on the patron's age, interests, and reading level. KidsReads.com is an example of a Web site that provides advisory services for children. Compare with bibliographic instruction.

The total number of people who read, or are estimated to read, a given publication, not necessarily equal to the number who purchase or subscribe to it. In periodical publishing, total readership equals base circulation plus pass-along. The term is also used to refer to a particular class of reader, for example, educated readership as opposed to general readership.

reading age
A measurement of a child's proficiency in reading, compared to the average competence of children of the same age. When applied to children's books, reading age indicates the level of difficulty of the text, usually expressed as an age range or grade level.

reading copy
A complimentary copy of a forthcoming book sent at no charge by the publisher to selected booksellers in advance of the publication date to promote sales. Reading copies may be printed as part of the regular edition and distributed in the same binding as the trade edition. Compare with advance copy.

Also refers to a used book so worn that it is not considered collectible in the antiquarian book trade unless rebound but is suitable for reading because the text is complete.

reading disability
Difficulty in learning to read, a serious obstacle to individual achievement in a literate society. The causes can be physical (e.g., dyslexia or ADHD), psychological (fear of failure), or cultural (lack of exposure to basic language skills in early childhood). In the public schools in the United States, reading failure is disproportionately prevalent among children living in poverty, but Dr. G. Reid Lyon of the Child Development and Behavior Branch of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has noted that through "systematic, explicit, and intensive instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, reading fluency, vocabulary, and reading comprehension" the majority of kindergarten and elementary school children at risk of reading failure can learn to read at average or above levels. Research by NICHD reveals that failure to develop basic reading skills by age nine predicts a lifetime of illiteracy. The key to effective prevention is early identification and intervention.

reading fee
An amount paid by an author to a literary agent or publisher for reading an unsolicited manuscript and commenting on it. To prevent abuses, most professional agents� associations have adopted policies prohibiting members from charging reading fees.

reading file
In archives, a circulating file containing copies of documents arranged in chronological order to allow the reader to follow the development of an activity or event over time. Compare with chronological file.

reading group
An organized group, usually sponsored by a library, school, church, or bookstore, whose members meet to talk about books they have read. Most groups coordinate their reading so that everyone has read the same book, or a work by the same author, in advance of meeting. In some groups, a facilitator is selected, sometimes on a rotating basis, who begins the session with a brief talk about the author or the book before opening the floor to discussion. See also: Great Books.

reading habits
See: reading preference.

reading lamp
A man-made light source specifically designed to provide the optimum amount of illumination for a person sitting and reading in a chair or at a desk, usually shaded to direct the light downward onto the page without glare. Very small models designed to clip onto the cover of a book can be purchased for reading in bed. To see examples, try a keywords search on the term in Google Images.

reading level
One of several degrees of proficiency in reading, usually defined in reference to a specific academic grade level (example: third-grade level) or stage of reading development, applicable to both reader and reading material. Factors determining reading level include vocabulary, sentence structure, length of text, and difficulty of content.

reading list
A list of recommended resources (books, articles, Web sites, etc.) on a topic, usually compiled by a teacher or librarian with an interest in or expertise on the subject, for distribution to students enrolled in a course of study or available to readers on a library display rack, kiosk, or bulletin board, not as comprehensive or scholarly as a research bibliography. Compare with pathfinder and research guide.

reading matter
Anything that can be read, from the back of a cereal box to a philosophical treatise. Reading material need not be written or printed on paper, merely text-based, for example, a news article published at a Web site. Choice of reading material reflects a person's interests, tastes, education, and experience. See also: readers' advisory and reading preference.

reading preference
A reader's taste in reading matter as to format (books, magazines, comic books, etc.), genre (fiction or nonfiction), subject (biography, crime, travel, etc.), and author. Although reading preferences often change with age, studies have shown that in some individuals they remain remarkably constant. Gender and age are important factors in fiction preferences (adventure and westerns for men, mystery and romance for women, science fiction and fantasy for adolescents). Psychological factors such as mood may also influence reader choice. Niche publishing appeals to consumers who have developed specific interests. Publishers rely on survey research to examine consumer choice. User surveys enable librarians to develop typologies of borrowers, based on habitual preferences. In public libraries, experienced public services librarians often make an effort to learn the reading habits of regular patrons, and may select materials with the preferences of specific individuals in mind. See also: readers' advisory.

Reading Rainbow
A television series designed to interest young children in the pleasures of reading outstanding books for children, Reading Rainbow was broadcast daily (M-F) for one-half hour by 95 percent of the public television (PBS) stations in the United States between 1983 and 2009. Its fast-paced magazine-style format garnered over 200 awards, including 26 Emmy Awards and a Peabody Award. Click here to learn more about Reading Rainbow in Wikipedia.

reading room
A specially designated room in a library, usually furnished with comfortable chairs, study tables, and reading lamps, where a person can study or read quietly without being disturbed. Reading rooms may also contain library materials such as reference books. Some libraries have wired their reading rooms to accommodate patrons with laptops, who require Internet access. Reading rooms in very large libraries, such as the New York Public Library at 5th Avenue and 42nd Street, are often beautifully designed and furnished.

Also refers to a community facility administered independently of a library, equipped with tables, chairs, and illumination but containing little or no reading matter, to which a person in need of a quiet retreat may bring his or her own materials for study, more common in less developed countries where comfortable space for individual study is at a premium.

A small text file containing important instructions on how to use a computer program, or information about new developments affecting the user of a software system, which may not be included in the printed documentation. To avoid computer viruses, caution should be exercised when opening a readme file sent as an e-mail attachment.

A digital storage medium capable of being read but not modified or erased, used for data that is to be retained permanently, for example, ROM (read-only memory) and CD-ROM. The opposite of rewritable. See also: WORM.

read-only memory (ROM)
A memory chip containing instructions and/or data that cannot be changed or erased because the manufacturer created it in unalterable form. Usually contains the programs required to start the computer. Click here to learn more ROM, courtesy of HowStuffWorks. Compare with CD-ROM.

ready reference
A reference question that can be answered by a reference librarian in one or two minutes by providing a fact or piece of information found in a single source. However, upon further inquiry, what at first appeared to be a simple query may turn out to be an opening gambit in a more extensive search, once the nature of the information need is fully understood.

Also refers to the reference materials used most often in answering such questions, shelved for convenience in a separate location near the reference desk rather than in the reference stacks (Books in Print, Encyclopedia of Associations, Statistical Abstract of the U.S., world almanacs, city directories, Ulrich's Periodicals Directory, etc.). Shelf dummies are used in the reference stacks to direct users to the correct location. Some libraries also provide online ready reference resources via their Web pages. Selection decisions are usually made by the public services librarians who work at the reference desk, based on consensus developed over time. For online ready reference resources, try IPL2 or the Fugitive Fact File maintained by the Hennepin County Library.

Three-dimensional objects from real life, whether man-made (artifacts, tools, utensils, etc.) or naturally occurring (specimens, samples, etc.), usually borrowed, purchased, or received as gifts by a library for use in classroom instruction or in exhibits. Archival and manuscript collections often receive items of memorabilia such as jewelry, leather goods, needlework, etc., in connection with gifts of personal papers (see this example). In AACR2, the term is added inside square brackets [realia] as a general material designation following the title proper in the bibliographic description. Compare with replica.

reality television
A genre of television programming in which ordinary people, instead of actors, are presented in unscripted and supposedly unrehearsed situations (example: Allen Funt's Candid Camera series which premiered in 1948). The category includes game shows and quiz shows, but not documentaries, television news, or sports broadcasting. The early 21st century has seen a rise in the popularity of reality shows, sparked by the series Big Brother and Survivor.

real time
Happening immediately, in the present moment, for example, a report on or record of events made simultaneously with their occurrence. In computing, an electronic process, operation, or routine that occurs quickly enough to affect or respond to a related process taking place simultaneously in actual time, for example, chat reference. The opposite of asynchronous.

As originally used in papermaking, the term referred to a unit of measurement consisting of 20 quires or 480 sheets of handmade paper, but the number of sheets in a ream eventually became standardized at 500 sheets of machine-made paper. More recently, European papermakers have adopted 1,000 sheets as the standard number.

A book given a new spine and mended hinges, usually because the spine was cracked or the hinges weakened. Original materials are used where possible, but when new cover material is required, a close match is usually attempted by the binder. Rebacking is not as extensive as rebinding since some of the original binding (usually the boards) is retained. Click here to see the steps in the process. See also: backstrip.

The complete rehabilitation of a book too worn to be mended or repair, a process that usually entails removing the cover or case, resewing the sections, and applying a new cover or case. In some instances, parts of an old binding can be incorporated into a new one. When this is impossible and the old binding is important, it should be kept as part of the book's history. The steps involved in preparing a book for rebinding are collectively known as pulling. Very large libraries are often equipped to perform rebinding in-house, but smaller libraries must rely on the services of a commercial bindery. Click here to see the process documented by the University of Washington Libraries. Compare with recased and recover. See also: covers bound in.

To cause the files in the operating system of a computer to be re-executed, usually by selecting the option to "Restart" or "Reset" or by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Del on the keyboard. This procedure is sometimes helpful in getting a computer "unstuck" after it locks up unexpectedly during processing. If it fails, the user can cold boot the system, but powering down will result in the loss of unsaved data. Synonymous with warm boot. See also: boot.

A type of puzzle in which certain words in a sentence are replaced by pictures of objects whose names suggest the meaning or sound of the words they are intended to represent, for example, a picture of a bed to suggest "sleep" or of an eye to represent the pronoun "I." According to James Bettley (The Art of the Book, V&A Publications, 2001), the earliest known example appears in a treatise on penmanship by Giovambattista Palatino printed in 1540. Rebus motifs were sometimes used in medieval manuscript decoration (see this example, courtesy of the British Library, Arundel 366). Click here to see an American Civil War letter written as a rebus.

A request by a library to one of its borrowers to return a borrowed item before its due date. In academic libraries, this occasionally happens when an instructor wishes to place the item on reserve.

In information retrieval, a measure of the effectiveness of a search, expressed as the ratio of the number of relevant records or documents retrieved in response to the query to the total number of relevant records or documents in the database; for example, in a database containing 100 records relevant to the topic "book history," a search retrieving 50 records, 25 of which are relevant to the topic, would have 25 percent recall (25/100). One of the main difficulties in using recall as a measure of search effectiveness is that it can be nearly impossible to determine the total number of relevant records in all but very small databases. Compare with precision. See also: fallout.

A book block that has come loose in, or fallen out of, its case or cover and been reglued into it. The procedure usually requires new endpapers but not resewing. Click here to see recasing illustrated, courtesy of the University of Illinois Library. The term is also used for a book rebound in a case taken from another copy of the same title or in an entirely new case. Compare with rebinding and recover.

The process of making substantial revisions in bibliographic records for items that have already been cataloged, usually in response to changes in the needs or policies of the library, for example, the addition of contents notes to records representing anthologies and other collected works. Also spelled recataloguing. Compare with reclassification.

A written document stating that something has been received, usually in exchange for payment of an amount noted in the acknowledgment. Sometimes found among personal and family papers, receipts may contain information of historical importance. Click here to see a receipt for tobacco purchased by Meriwether Lewis for the Lewis and Clark expedition to the West (National Archives and Records Administration). Also used synonymously with recipe, as in receipt book.

In acquisitions, the initial processing of an item shipped to the library by a publisher, jobber, or vendor, including verification that the correct item was shipped with all parts included, routing the invoice to the appropriate accounting office for payment, and updating the order record, usually with date received, number of parts received, and an indication of where the item was sent for the next step in processing.

A revision of the text of a work, often a literary classic, based on a critical examination of earlier texts and authoritative sources, usually undertaken only after a consensus has developed among leading scholars concerning the weight of evidence. Compare with redaction. See also: textus receptus.

recently returned
A code used in online catalogs and circulation systems to indicate the circulation status of an item returned by a borrower and checked in by library staff so recently that it may still be on a holding shelf or in the process of being reshelved. The temporary designation assists staff in tracing the item if it cannot be located by call number in the stacks. Unless the item is checked out again immediately upon return, the status code automatically changes to "available" after a predetermined interval of time.

The quality of a radio or television signal received. Also, the quality of the critical response to a newly created work, a new translation or edition of a previously published work, or a new production of a previously performed work.

recessed monitor
See: monitor.

reciprocal agreement
A mutual understanding between libraries, usually concerning fees for lending via interlibrary loan, typically "We will not charge you if you do not charge us."

reciprocal borrowing privileges
Loan privileges granted by independent cooperating libraries to registered members of each other's user groups, sometimes for a modest fee. In September 2004, the Office of Research and Statistics (ORS) of the American Library Association (ALA) surveyed the state data coordinators of each state or territorial library agency concerning the presence of statewide reciprocal borrowing, reciprocal borrowing between similar libraries (public, academic, school, and special), multistate reciprocal borrowing, and whether the state had issued a statewide library card. The results were summarized in the January 2005 issue of American Libraries. Click here for the results.

Revision of the call numbers assigned to selected items to make their relationship to other items in the collection more consistent, for example, to reflect the merger of two classes very similar in subject. Also refers to the conversion of a collection (or part of a collection) originally cataloged under one classification system to another, for example, from Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) to Library of Congress Classification (LCC), or vice versa.

Also refers to the removal of previously declassified government documents from public access. American Libraries reported in its March 2006 issue that U.S. Archivist Allen Weinstein called upon all intelligence and security agencies on March 2, 2006 to cease removing documents from the open shelves of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and to return as many records as possible which they pulled as part of a secret program in operation since 1999. His call for the moratorium was prompted by a letter from a group of historians who complained that the CIA, the Defense Department, and the Department of Justice had withdrawn approximately 9,500 documents from the Korean War and Cold War periods for purposes of reclassification. See also: sensitive but unclassified.

recognition program
A management tool designed to inspire and reward outstanding performance outside the normal process of promotion, tenure, and increase in salary, usually by symbolic means (certificates, name plaques, ceremonial honors, thank-you letters, etc.). Some recognition programs offer more tangible rewards (cash bonuses, free parking, gift certificates, etc.).

See: retrospective conversion.

To change the way data is structured in a computer system.

reconnaissance map
A map that is the result of a preliminary survey or exploratory examination of a geographic area, usually less accurate than the cartographic product of a subsequent survey in which more rigorous methods are employed (see this example).

A graphic image intended to show how something, such as a building, street, complex, or city, may have appeared at a previous time, usually based on historical, archaeological, or other evidence. Click here and here to see reconstructions of the Parthenon and Acropolis in ancient Athens.

An account of something, put down in writing, usually as a means of documenting facts for legal or historical purposes. Also, to make such an account. In a narrower sense, a formal document in which the content is presented in a named set of standardized data elements treated as a single unit, for example, a certificate, deed, lease, etc. In archives, a document created or received, and subsequently maintained, by an institution, organization, or individual in the transaction of official or personal business or in fulfillment of a legal obligation. See also: bibliographic record and catalog record.

In computing, a collection of related data fields organized and accessible as a single entity. A machine-readable data file is a collection of such records.

Also, to use an audiorecording or videorecording device to capture and store audio or video signals for playback. Also refers to any sound recording made on a vinyl disk, for example, a phonograph record.

record album
One or more paper sleeves designed to hold phonograph records, usually enclosed in a colorful pasteboard cover (see this example), often with a list of the contents and descriptive notes printed on the back or on the inside. Each sleeve may have a wide circle cut from the center (example), sometimes replaced with transparent material to allow the record label to remain visible.

Also used in reference to the recording itself and, by extension, to a music recording on compact disc (CD).

record chart
A ranking of recorded music based on airplay, sales, or number of downloads during a given period of time, usually broadcast or published in recording industry trade publications, such as Billboard magazine. Summary charts for years and decades are compiled from weekly charts.

record club
In the music industry, a commercial company that markets recordings at discounted prices, usually via mail order catalogs (example: Columbia Record Club, established in 1955). Incentives, such as bonus records, may be offered to attract customers.

record copy
In records management, the single copy of a document (handwritten, printed, photographic, or machine-readable), designated as the official copy or most important copy for purposes of reference and preservation, usually held by the creating office or another office of record, for example, the official transcript of a student's grades, usually held by the administrative offices of the educational institution at which the course work was undertaken. The record copy is often but not always the original. Convenience copies may be retained in other departments within the organization. Synonymous with copy of record, official copy, and principal copy.

recorded book
See: audiobook.

record group
In archives, an aggregation of all the records of a particular agency or person, or a body of records known to be related on the basis of provenance, usually stored together in their original order (see respect des fonds). A record subgroup consists of records within a record group, related in some way (functionally, chronologically, geographically, etc.) or produced by a subordinate unit of the agency responsible for creating, receiving, or accumulating the group. Subgroups may be further subdivided. See also: collective record group.

recording company
A commercial enterprise in the business of producing and selling sound recordings (CDs, audiocassettes, phonograph records, etc.). In AACR2, the name of the recording company or one of its subdivisions (or a trade name or brand name used by the recording company) appearing on the chief source of information is given as publisher in the publication, distribution, etc., area of the bibliographic description (example: New York : RCA Victor). See also: record label.

Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)
Established in 1952, the RIAA is a trade organization dedicated to supporting and promoting the creative and financial vitality of major music recording companies. The RIAA protects intellectual property and First Amendment rights of artists and music labels; conducts consumer, industry, and technical research; and monitors and reviews state and federal laws, regulations, and policies affecting the music recording industry. The RIAA also collects and compiles information about purchasing trends and shipment of recorded music in the United States; participates in the collection, administration, and distribution of music licenses and royalties; and is responsible for certifying gold and platinum albums and singles in the U.S. Click here to connect to the RIAA homepage.

recording rights
Under copyright law, the right to make an audiorecording of a performance of a piece of music or of a reading or recitation of a textual work. In the United States, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has taken an aggressive stance against violators who copy published music without permission. See also: bootlegging and copyright piracy.

record item
In archives, the smallest separate and distinct unit of recorded material that, when accumulated, constitutes a record series, for example, a file in a group of related files. Compare with bibliographic item.

record jacket
See: album cover.

recordkeeping system
The methods and procedures used in creating, arranging, and maintaining records of the activities of an agency or individual, usually in some kind of systematic order (alphabetical, chronological, topical, functional, etc.), which may appear idiosyncratic to outsiders unfamiliar with the system. See also: original order.

record label
A small, round printed paper label glued to the center of a phonograph record, giving the name of the recording company, the title and/or contents of the recording, the name(s) of the performer(s), and other information such as price, recording number, name of manufacturer, etc., often including the recording company's logo. In AACR2, the chief source of information for cataloging a sound disc is the disc itself and any label permanently affixed to it. Click here to see an early Paramount record label, or try a keywords search on the term "record label" in eBay to find other examples. Often used synonymously with recording company, although a record label may give the name of a subdivision of the recording company or a trade name or brand name used by the company. Collectors often focus on recordings of a given label. For more information, see American Record Labels and Companies: An Encyclopedia (1891-1943) by Allan Sutton and Kurt Nauck (Mainspring Press, 2000). See also: independent label and specialty label.

record player
See: phonograph record.

Documents in any form, created or received by an agency or person, accumulated in the normal conduct of business or affairs, and retained as evidence of such activity, permanently or for a limited period of time, usually arranged according to a discernible system of recordkeeping. See also: active records, electronic records, housekeeping records, inactive records, intermediate records, machine-readable records, official records, program records, records management, temporary records, time-expired records, and vital records.

record series
In archives, records of the same provenance, determined upon inspection to belong together because they (1) are part of a recognizable filing system, (2) have been stored together because they were produced by the same activity, (3) are related to the same function or activity and are similar in format, or (4) comprise a set logically grouped in some other way. A record series is usually identified by a unique series number and may in some cases consist of a single record item.

records inventory
A detailed listing of the volume, scope, and complexity of an organization's records, usually conducted for the purpose of creating a disposition schedule, but the results may be used for various purposes, including retention and preservation. A complete inventory should include the following information for each record series: date the inventory was prepared, office maintaining the files, name of person conducting the inventory (with contact information), series location, inclusive dates, series description, medium, arrangement, volume of materials (usually expressed in cubic feet or as an item count), annual accumulation, cutoff, reference activity (current/active, semicurrent/semiactive, or noncurrent/inactive), vital records status (if applicable), duplication, finding aids, restrictions on access or use, condition of permanent records, and disposition authority. The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) publishes a FAQ About Records Inventories. Compare with records survey.

records management
The field of management devoted to achieving accuracy, efficiency, and economy in the systematic creation, retention, conservation, dissemination, use, and disposition of the official records of a company, government agency, organization, or institution, whether in physical or electronic form, usually undertaken by a professionally trained records manager on the basis of a comprehensive and thorough records survey. Security and disaster preparedness are essential elements of a good records management program.

records schedule
See: disposition schedule.

records survey
The systematic process of examining archival records in their administrative context to determine their content, format, provenance, original order, physical quantities and condition, rates of accumulation, and other characteristics, before beginning the work of systematically describing and arranging them. The information gained in such a survey is also of use in developing disposition schedules, planning conservation, determining access policy, and estimating the amount of space required to store them. Compare with records inventory.

record structure
The pre-established sequence of fields and subfields used to describe a single item in a library catalog or bibliographic database, each field containing one or more related elements of description. For example, the journal title, volume number, date of issue, and page numbers in the source field of a record representing a journal article in a periodical database. Most catalogs and databases include textual field labels in the record display to help users distinguish the various categories of description.

records use policy
A statement of the conditions under which use and transfer of bibliographic records is permissible, issued by the cataloging authority responsible for creating and/or distributing the records. OCLC's statement of WorldCat Rights and Responsibilities for the OCLC Cooperative, which became effective on August 1, 2010, relaxes restrictions on the use and transfer of records to non-OCLC members, such as archives, museums, and historical societies, but retains restrictions for commercial organizations. Since February 2009, new OCLC catalog records have included a link to the text of the OCLC policy in the 996 field of the MARC record.

To apply a new or reconstructed cover to a volume, without resewing the sections. The process of making the new cover and attaching it to the sections is called recovering (click here to see it illustrated, courtesy of the University of Illinois Library). Compare with rebinding and recased.

Also, to get back something that was lost, for example, library materials known to have been stolen or checked out and lost by the borrower. Fees may be refunded, depending on the circumstances. See also: replevin.

The process of attracting qualified personnel to work in a library or library system by posting a notice and position description in appropriate LIS journals and to library-related electronic mailing lists and by publicizing the vacancy at job fairs and word-of-mouth. Also refers to the efforts of library schools and professional library associations to attract promising students to careers in library and information science. See also: Office for Human Resources Development and Recruitment.

The upper side of a leaf of parchment, vellum, or paper, or the right-hand page in a bound volume when opened, usually assigned an odd page number. The opposite of verso. Click here to see a recto in the 15th-century Burnet Psalter and here to see the verso of the same leaf (University of Aberdeen Library). The title page and dedication, and the first page of the preface, introduction, table of contents, chapters, appendices, indexes, and other major parts of a book are usually printed on the recto. Also, the side of a single printed sheet intended to be read first, unless both sides are identically printed. Also known as the obverse.

recycled paper
Paper manufactured from reclaimed wastepaper that has been reduced to pulp and processed to remove ink and other impurities. Recycled paper is used in printing and as writing paper to conserve natural resources and reduce the volume of refuse in sanitary landfills. Book publishers consider the highest grades suitable for printing fiction. Compare with virgin paper.

The process of editing, revising, and/or arranging to publish a work left incomplete or in a condition not suitable for publication, usually at the death of the author, work accomplished by a redactor. Also refers to the result of such an endeavor. Compare with continuation and recension.

red book
The popular name given to a manual containing official lists of state employees or other eminent people, for example, members of the British peerage, known by the color of its cover. Compare with blue book.

A last-ditch preservation measure, used only on severely shrunken motion picture film, in which the plastic base is subjected to a chemical reaction that returns it to a state closer to its original dimensions. The treated film is then printed before the reaction wears off causing the film to reshrink. According to The Film Preservation Guide (National Film Preservation Foundation, 2004), redimensioning is a destructive process that may permanently damage the original and should only be used to preserve deteriorated works that are irretrievable by other means.

Forwarding by a Web server that changes an incoming URL to another URL, usually when the Internet address of a Web page has changed. The simplest method is a dummy page at the old address displaying a link to the new address, or the Webmaster may insert an HTML "meta refresh" statement that automatically transfers the user to the new address, usually after an interval of a few seconds. Some Web servers are capable of handling redirection with look-up tables that pair the old URL with the new URL. Redirection based on the IP address of the incoming user is accomplished by writing a CGI script.

red rot
Disintegration of the fibers in leather into a reddish powder, caused by the chemical breakdown of sulfuric acid in vegetable-tanned leather and by exposure to industrial pollutants, most common in book bindings produced during the last three decades of the 19th century. Red rot is accelerated by low humidity. Cellugel is recommended by some conservators to help stabilize this type of deterioration. Leather dressing (see oiling) is not a remedy for red rot. Click here and here to see examples on older bindings.

A reproduction or copy produced on a smaller scale than the original, usually indicated as a percentage of the initial size (a 50 percent reduction of an 8 x 10 inch original produces a copy measuring 4 x 5 inches). Most photocopiers available in libraries have reduction capability for the convenience of users. The opposite of enlargement. See also: micrographics, reduction print, and reduction ratio.

reduction print
A positive print of a motion picture made in a smaller film format than the original, for example, a 16mm print made from a 35mm original. The opposite of blowup.

reduction ratio
In microphotography, an indication of the number of times the size of a document or other object is reduced to form a microimage. For example, 25X means that the image is 25 times smaller than the linear dimensions of the original. Reduction ratios are classified as follows:

Low - up to 15X
Medium - 15X to 30X
High - 30X to 60X
Very high - 60X to 90X
Ultrahigh - above 90X

In communication, the use of repetition to reinforce a message and prevent misunderstanding, as in a sign that reads, "This Way to the Library" instead of simply "Library" or "To the Library." In a more general sense, any words or symbols not essential to the meaning of a message.

In computer systems, devices that stand ready to handle transmission or processing if and when the units normally used for the purpose fail or have to be taken offline.

A flanged circular holder with a spindle hole through the center around which a roll of processed photographic film is wound, usually designed to be inserted in a projector, reader, reader-printer, or other display device. Initially open reels were also used for magnetic tape but they have been largely replaced by cartridges. Compare with spool.

Reels for motion picture film, made of metal or hard plastic, consist of a hub of the appropriate gauge (16mm, 35mm, 70mm) with open extended sides between which the film is wound. The supply reel holds the film to be projected and the take-up reel holds film after it has gone through the gate of the projector (see this example). On a split reel the two flanges can be separated and the hub is designed to accommodate a standard plastic core to facilitate the transfer of film from reel to core for storage and from core back to reel for projection. In the silent film era, the term "reel" was an approximate measure of running time, each 1,000-foot 35mm reel running 10 or 18 minutes, depending on projection speed.

In scholarly publishing, an expert whose areas of specialization include the subject of a journal article or book, usually a professional peer of the author, to whom the editor or publisher sends the manuscript for critical evaluation before accepting it for publication. A referee may recommend changes, corrections, or clarification of points in the text. In most circumstances, the identity of a referee is kept confidential. See also: peer-reviewed.

See: peer-reviewed.

A conventional word or phrase used in a work to refer the reader to another part of the text (see above or see below) or a similar word or phrase used in an index, catalog, or reference work to direct the user from one heading or entry to another (see or see also). Also refers to any Latin phrase used in footnotes, endnotes, and bibliographies to refer the reader to works previously quoted or cited, for example, ibid. and op. cit. Sometimes used synonymously with citation.

Also refers to a letter written in support of a person's application for employment or housing, usually by someone familiar with the applicant's qualifications or reputation, or to a person who agrees to be contacted for such a recommendation, usually by telephone.

Reference and User Services Association (RUSA)
Established as a division of the American Library Association (ALA) in 1972, RUSA has a membership of librarians and other individuals committed to promoting the delivery of reference and information services to all persons, regardless of age, in libraries of all kinds. RUSA publishes the journal Reference and User Services Quarterly (RUSQ). Click here to connect to the RUSA homepage.

reference book
A book designed to be consulted when authoritative information is needed, rather than read cover to cover. Reference books often consist of a series of signed or unsigned "entries" listed alphabetically under headwords or headings, or in some other arrangement (classified, numeric, etc.). The category includes almanacs, atlases, bibliographies, biographical sources, catalogs, concordances, dictionaries, directories, discographies and filmographies, encyclopedias, glossaries, handbooks, indexes, manuals, research guides, union lists, yearbooks, etc., whether published commercially or as government documents. Long reference works may be issued in multivolume sets, with any indexes in the last volume. Reference works that require continuous updating may be published serially, sometimes as loose-leaf services.

In libraries, reference books are shelved in a separate section called the reference stacks and are not allowed to circulate because they are needed to answer questions at the reference desk. Reference books are reviewed in American Reference Books Annual, CHOICE, Library Journal, the Reference Books Bulletin section of Booklist, Reference Services Review, and Reference and User Services Quarterly published by RUSA. Gale provides a searchable database of Reference Reviews. The two leading bibliographies of English-language reference materials are Guide to Reference Books published by the American Library Association and Walford's Guide to Reference Materials published by the Library Association (UK). Compare with circulating book. See also: open access reference work.

Reference Books Bulletin (RBB)
A separate section at the end of the review publication Booklist, providing reviews of approximately 500 reference books and electronic reference materials annually. General encyclopedias and certain types of dictionaries are often reviewed together to facilitate comparison. RBB has its own editorial board and, unlike Booklist, publishes reviews of items not recommended for purchase. ISSN: 0006-7385.

reference collection
Books containing authoritative information not meant to be read cover to cover, such as dictionaries, handbooks, and encyclopedias, shelved together by call number in a special section of the library called the reference stacks. Reference books may not be checked out because they are needed by librarians to answer questions at the reference desk. Their location and circulation status is usually indicated by the symbol "R" or "Ref" preceding the call number in the catalog record and on the spine label. See also: ready reference.

reference desk
When a person has a question about how to find specific information or how to use library services and resources, assistance can be obtained by contacting the public service point, usually located near the library's reference collection, in person, by telephone, or in some libraries via e-mail. A professionally trained reference librarian scheduled to work at the reference desk will provide an answer or refer the inquirer to a knowledgeable source. In large public and academic libraries, the reference desk may be staffed by two librarians, especially during periods of peak use. Compare with information desk. See also: digital reference, reference interview, and roving.

reference interview
The interpersonal communication that occurs between a reference librarian and a library user to determine the person's specific information need(s), which may turn out to be different than the reference question as initially posed. Because patrons are often reticent, especially in face-to-face interaction, patience and tact may be required on the part of the librarian. A reference interview may occur in person, by telephone, or electronically (usually via e-mail) at the request of the user, but a well-trained reference librarian will sometimes initiate communication if a hesitant user appears to need assistance. For more information, see The Reference Interview as a Creative Art by Elaine and Edward Jennerich (Libraries Unlimited, 1997) or try the ORE on the Web online tutorial, courtesy of the Ohio Library Council. See also: digital reference and roving.

reference librarian
A librarian who works in public services, answering questions posed by library patrons at a reference desk, by telephone, or via e-mail. A reference librarian may also be called upon to provide point-of-use instruction on the use of library resources and information technology (see this example). Most reference librarians also assist in the selection of a balanced collection of reference materials to meet the information needs of the library's clientele. In the United States, reference librarians are represented in the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). RUSA publishes Guidelines for Behavioral Performance of Reference and Information Service Providers (June 2004).

reference management software
Application software designed to enable researchers to collect bibliographic references quickly and easily, cite them properly, organize them effectively, and share them with others. Proprietary examples include EasyBib, EndNote, Mendeley, and RefWorks. A free open source example is Zotero. Synonymous with citation manager.

reference mark
A printer's symbol used in text to refer to material printed in a different place, for example, in a footnote or in another passage on the same page. When more than one reference is given on a page, the order of symbols is the asterisk (*), dagger (†), double dagger (‡), section mark (§), parallel mark, and paragraph mark (¶). When necessary, the sequence can be repeated, but most publishers prefer to indicate multiple references by the use of numerals in superscript.

reference matter
See: back matter.

reference publisher
A company that specializes in publishing reference books, such as dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, etc. (examples: ABC-CLIO and Facts On File). AcqWeb provides a list of reference publishers.

reference question
A request from a library user for assistance in locating specific information or in using library resources in general, made in person, by telephone, or electronically. In most libraries, reference questions are answered by a professionally trained reference librarian during a regularly scheduled shift at the reference desk, but in small libraries this function may be performed by a paraprofessional. A reference interview may be required to determine the precise nature of the information need. Questions are usually recorded in a transaction log by category (directional, informational, instructional, referral) for statistical purposes.

reference serial
A publication used by reference librarians to find authoritative information, issued successively at regular or irregular intervals with no indication of an ending date. The category includes almanacs (example: Library and Book Trade Almanac), dictionaries (Dictionary of Literary Biography), directories (American Art Directory), annuals (Europa World Year Book), handbooks (CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics), statistical publications (Statistical Abstract of Latin America), loose-leaf services (Facts on File), etc. Reference serials are normally placed on continuation order and shelved with other reference materials in the reference stacks.

reference services
All the functions performed by a trained librarian employed in the reference section of a library to meet the information needs of patrons (in person, by telephone, or electronically), including but not limited to answering substantive questions, instructing users in the selection and use of appropriate tools and techniques for finding information, conducting searches on behalf of the patron, directing users to the location of library resources, assisting in the evaluation of information, referring patrons to resources outside the library when appropriate, keeping reference statistics, and participating in the development of the reference collection. For an online guide to reference services, see the tutorial ORE on the Web, courtesy of the Ohio Library Council. See also: collaborative reference, cooperative reference, digital reference, ready reference, and Reference and User Services Association.

reference source
Any publication from which authoritative information can be obtained, including but not limited to reference books, catalog records, printed indexes and abstracting services, and bibliographic databases. Individuals and services outside the library that can be relied upon to provide authoritative information are considered resources for referral.

reference stacks
The area of a library in which the reference collection is shelved in call number order, usually located near the reference desk, open to the public in most public and academic libraries in the United States. Printed periodical indexes may be shelved separately from the reference book collection, usually alphabetically by title or in a classified arrangement. See also: ready reference.

reference statistics
In most libraries, the librarians who work at the reference desk keep a daily transaction log in which they record reference questions, usually by hour and type of question (informational, directional, instructional, referral, etc.). Compiled by week, month, and year, the results are analyzed to reveal patterns and trends helpful in anticipating staffing needs, scheduling the reference desk, developing the reference collection, and planning new services. The librarian responsible for supervising reference services may also cite them in reports submitted to the library administration.

A type of reference transaction in which a patron with an information need is directed to a reputable person or agency outside the library, better qualified to provide assistance. In some public libraries, a list or index of referral agencies and resources, with contact information, is maintained at the reference desk for this purpose. For an online referrral service, try AllExperts.com or the The AnswerBank. See also: information and referral.

Established in 1971 as an affiliate of the American Library Association (ALA), REFORMA (the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking) actively promotes the development of Spanish-language and Latino-oriented library collections, recruitment of bilingual and multicultural librarians and support staff, development of library programs and services for the Latino community, public awareness of library services among Latinos, lobbying on behalf of the information needs of Latinos, and liaison with other professional organizations. Click here to connect to the REFORMA homepage.

To convert a document from one format to another without changing its content, for example, a journal article published in print to microform for compact storage or from print to ASCII text for inclusion in a full-text bibliographic database. In preservation, reformatting is usually undertaken when the long-term survival of a document in its current format is unlikely, for example, a work published electronically in a medium rapidly becoming obsolete or a document printed on acid paper in an advanced state of deterioration. See also: original format and Preservation and Reformatting Section.

Also, to prepare a floppy disk for a new use by completely erasing any data stored on it. Normally when a disk is reinitialized, it is also tested to make sure it is still reliable.

See: reload.

In conservation, the basic cleaning and reconditioning of an old book, including the application of leather dressing and minor repairs, intended to improve appearance and retard deterioration. Compare with restoration.

Regency fiction
Works of imaginative fiction written by early 19th-century authors in which the setting is the period from 1811 to 1820, when King George III's son ruled the United Kingdom as Prince Regent. The novels of Jane Austen and Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1818) are well-known examples. In modern Regency fiction, the setting is Regency England, including the colonies and continental Europe, but the authors are post-19th-century (example: C.S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower series).

Regional Alliance for Preservation (RAP)
An alliance that began in 1997 as a pilot project of the Commission on Preservation and Access (Washington, D.C.) to foster cooperation among the Preservation Field Service programs funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). When project funding ended in 1998, the participants decided to continue as a cooperative program and the alliance expanded to include members of the Association of Regional Conservation Centers (ARCC). RAP currently has 14 member organizations located throughout the United States, committed to fostering awareness of the need to preserve cultural heritage and to assisting a wide range of cultural institutions with the care of collections. Click here to connect to the RAP homepage.

regional book
A term used in the publishing industry for a book written to appeal to readers who live in, or have an interest in, a specific geographic area. Regional books are often published by small presses for sale in local bookstores or by mail order. They include local histories, biographies, genealogies, directories, cookbooks, travel guides, field guides, etc. Some public libraries shelve them in a separate section to make them more accessible.

regional depository library
A depository library designated by Congress to receive and retain permanently in its collections one copy of each government publication distributed free of charge in any format through the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP). Regional libraries are also responsible for serving other depository libraries in their region by providing copies of government documents as needed and by assisting in the fulfillment of depository regulations. FDsys provides the Federal Depository Library Directory. Compare with selective depository library.

regional library
A public library serving the information needs of a group of communities or counties in the United States, supported by public funds provided by the units of government within the service area, for example, the Fort Vancouver Regional Library serving southwestern Washington State. See also: regional depository library.

The alignment of pages back-to-back in the printing of the second side of a sheet to make the text blocks coincide exactly. In multicolor printing, the precise alignment of the impression for each color with the one(s) preceding it to produce an image that is in register (sharp), rather than out of register (blurred). Also refers to the list of symbols by which the signatures of a book are marked to indicate their sequence in binding.

In bookbinding, a length of thin ribbon glued to the top of the spine of a book before lining, for use as a bookmark. Books used in the services of the Roman Catholic Church sometimes have several ribbons in different colors for marking more than one page in the text. In French bookbinding of the 16th century, a precious stone or other ornament was sometimes attached to the ribbon. Synonymous in this sense with signet.

Also refers to a list of names, addresses, events, dates, etc., usually compiled in a single chronological or numerical sequence and maintained as an official log or record (see this 19th-century example, courtesy of the Delaware Public Archives). The term is also used for the act of recording information in such a list. See also: civil register and registry.

In medieval manuscripts, a horizontal tier of illumination. Full-page miniatures sometimes contain several images or scenes, divided into registers, as in this example, courtesy of the British Library (Yates Thompson 15).

register mark
One of a set of pinholes, small cross marks or squares, or other devices used to align printed material that requires more than one pass through the press. Synonymous with registration mark.

The office responsible for maintaining one or more official lists or registers of names, addresses, events, dates, or other information, usually for legal purposes. For example, in the United States the official registry for copyrights is the U.S. Copyright Office of the Library of Congress. The term is sometimes used for the list or record itself. See also: International Serials Data System and National Film Registry.

A metadata registry is an application that records the authoritative definitions of terms and shows relationships between terms from the same metadata scheme or from multiple schemes.

The frequency of a serial publication issued at intervals governed by an established rule, usually of uniform length, expressed in days, weeks, months, quarters, years, etc., for example, monthly with the exception of August and December. The opposite of irregular. The term also describes a contribution to a newspaper or periodical, appearing in every issue or at stated intervals, for example, "The Back Page" column in the review publication Booklist.

Also refers to a person who attends a certain type of event or uses the same service(s) at fairly predictable intervals. Libraries often have regular patrons whose habits and reading preferences become familiar to the public services librarians who serve them.

To pay back money spent by another person or to compensate someone for damages or expenses incurred, usually upon presentation of a receipt verifying the amount. In libraries, employees may be reimbursed for work-related travel expense, office supplies purchased out of pocket, etc.

reinforced binding
A publisher's binding that has been strengthened, usually by adding a strip of cloth to each hinge and using stronger thread to sew the sections, but that does not meet the standards for prelibrary binding.

To return something to a former condition, or a person to a position from which he or she has been removed, sometimes in compliance with the outcome of a grievance procedure or lawsuit.

A second or subsequent impression of a previously published edition in which the text remains substantially the same, but the title page may be redesigned and the front matter and back matter altered. When a mass-market paperback is reissued, the cover design of the earlier edition is often changed.

rejection rate
In journal publishing, the percentage of the total number of articles submitted for publication during a given period of time that are rejected or returned to the author (or authors) for revision as a condition of acceptance, usually following the process of peer-review.

rejection slip
A printed slip sent by a publisher with a returned manuscript informing the author (or authors) that the work has not been accepted for publication. Synonymous with rejection notice. See also: over the transom.

In binding, to repair a broken joint by the application of a cloth or paper strip, preserving the original covers and spine. Not an especially strong method, but it can be used to keep a worn book in circulation when rebinding is not cost effective.

To manually re-enter lost text or data into a computer, or to input text or data in a different format using a manual keyboard.

related body
A corporate body associated with another corporate body but not functioning under its direct authority, for example, a Friends group that supports a library through volunteer work, fund-raising, advocacy, and other activities but is not a unit within its organizational structure. AACR2 includes in this category a corporate body founded but not controlled by another body, one receiving support from or providing financial and/or other assistance to another body, and one whose members also have membership in, or an association with, another body. Compare with subordinate body.

related term (RT)
In a hierarchical classification system, a descriptor or subject heading closely related to another term conceptually but not hierarchically, for example, "Media specialists" listed as a related term under "School libraries." A descriptor or subject heading may have more than one related term (also "Children's libraries" under "School libraries"). Also abbreviated R. Compare with broader term and narrower term.

related work
See: dependent work.

As defined in FRBR (Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records), the nature of the link between entities, for example, between one work and another (a prequel to the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare), between a work and one of its expressions (the film version of Hamlet adapted and directed by Kenneth Branagh), between an expression and one of its manifestations (Branagh's adaptation of Hamlet, as embodied in the videorecording released in 1996 by Columbia TriStar Home Video), or between a manifestation and one of its items (a set of videocassettes exemplifying the 1996 videorecording of Branagh's interpretation of Hamlet).

relative humidity
See: humidity.

relative index
A subject index to a classification system indicating the classes under which subjects are listed, with their notations. In the Dewey Decimal Classification schedules, subjects are arranged by discipline. At the end of the schedules, an alphabetical index of subjects is provided (the Relative Index). Indented under each subject heading is an alphabetical list of the disciplines in which the subject is found, with corresponding class numbers. For example, the entry in the index for the subject "Books" directs the cataloger to the discipline "Bibliographies" with the notation 011 and also to "Publishing" (070.5), "Sociology" (302.232), and "Technology" (686).

To allow copies of a recorded work to be issued, shown, or sold to the general public for the first time. In the case of motion pictures and videorecordings, to permit copies to be distributed for public viewing. In exceptional cases, a motion picture may be rereleased in significantly altered form. In library cataloging, the release date is used as the publication date in the bibliographic description. See also: releasing agent and rerelease.

release date
The date on which a motion picture or videorecording is officially made available for distribution to theaters for public viewing or to wholesale and retail outlets for sale. In library cataloging, year of release is entered in the publication distribution, etc., area of the bibliographic record representing the item. Compare with publication date.

release print
The final version of a motion picture, intended for distribution to public audiences, sometimes shorter than the director intended. In some cases, an initial print found to be too long is rereleased after having been cut (example: Disney's Fantasia). On very rare occasions, a motion picture from which important scenes were cut is rereleased after having been restored to its original length (Frank Capra's Lost Horizon). When such an item is cataloged by a library, the phrase "original restored version" is added as a note in the bibliographic description. Synonymous with show print.

releasing agent
The person or agency responsible for the initial distribution (release) of a motion picture. In AACR2, the name is recorded optionally in the publication, distribution, etc., area of the bibliographic description following the name of the publisher.

The extent to which information retrieved in a search of a library collection or other resource, such as an online catalog or bibliographic database, is judged by the user to be applicable to ("about") the subject of the query. Relevance depends on the searcher's subjective perception of the degree to which the document fulfills the information need, which may or may not have been expressed fully or with precision in the search statement. Measures of the effectiveness of information retrieval, such as precision and recall, depend on the relevance of search results. Compare with pertinence. See also: false drop and relevance ranking.

relevance ranking
A feature of some search software that weights the documents or records retrieved in a search according to the degree to which they meet the requirements of the query. Ranked results are normally presented in decreasing order of relevance, computed on the basis of the number of occurrences of each search term in the document or record, and the weight assigned to the field(s) in which each term appears (title, subject headings, abstract, or full-text).

relevance ratio
See: precision.

relief map
A topographic map showing differences in elevation over all or a portion of the surface of the earth by means of standard graphic techniques, such as linear contours, shading, gradient tint, hachures, and/or spot elevations. On this map of Devil's Tower in Wyoming, elevation is indicated by contours and hill shading, and on this map of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, relief is shown by shading and hypsometric tints. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) issues relief maps of the 50 states, available in the government documents collections of larger depository libraries. Tactile raised-relief maps are manufactured for the use of persons who are visually impaired. Compare with planimetric map. See also: bathymetric map, relief model, and rock drawing.

relief model
In cartography, a scale representation in three-dimensions of a section of the surface of the earth or another celestial body, usually done in wood, papier mâché, plaster, or plastic on which differences in elevation are indicated by the relative height of the surface and often by tint and/or shading. Vertical exaggeration is often used for contrast. Click here to see a shaded relief model of Adak Island, Alaska.

relievo binding
In Italian relievo means "relief." A binding made from leather that is softened, then molded and deeply embossed, a technique used in 19th-century England to introduce designs reflecting the Victorian revival of Gothic style. Click here to see a selection of 19th-century embossed bindings (University of North Texas Libraries). See also: papier mâché binding.

religious book
A work of fiction or nonfiction in which the main theme is based on a particular religious faith. Included in the category are sacred texts, devotional works, materials for religious professionals, textbooks for religious education, and inspirational titles intended for laypersons. Some publishers specialize in religious works (examples: Zondervan, Judaica Press, Kazi Publications, etc.). Large publishers may have a division devoted to religious publishing (Schocken Books within Random House). New Christian fiction is reviewed regularly in a separate section of Booklist. Religious books are sold in religious bookstores, through religious book clubs, and increasingly in trade bookstores. Public libraries select judiciously with an eye toward maintaining a balanced collection. See also: Sunday school book.

An option in the toolbar of a Web browser that causes the currently displayed Web page to be retrieved from its original remote address, rather than from the browser cache of the computer used to retrieve it, necessary if the data available from the site is time-sensitive (news, stock quotes, weather reports, current statistics, etc.). Some Web pages are designed to automatically refresh at regular intervals.

In Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), the editorial decision to shift a subject from one class number to another in a new edition of the schedules, the two numbers differing in more than length of notation (example: "sociolinguistics" relocated in the 20th edition from 401.9 to 306.44). Reciprocal notes are added in the schedules to inform the user of the new and former numbers.

reluctant reader
A person who, for whatever reason, chooses not to read, doing so only when necessary, usually a sign of poor reading skills or fear of being stereotyped. Young adult librarians often coax adolescent boys into reading by providing them with easy-to-read materials on subjects that appeal to their interests. The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) publishes "Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers" in Booklist, Library and Book Trade Almanac, and School Library Journal. Jon Scieszka has created Guys Read, an online literacy initiative specifically for boys. Compare with nonreader.

reluctant user
Someone who makes use of a service or device, not by choice but because he or she is compelled by circumstance to do so. Reluctant users usually lack confidence or experience.

remainder binding
See: remainders.

remainder house
A book dealer who purchases unsold copies of new books (overstock) from publishers at a substantial price reduction for resale well below list price (example: Hamilton Books).

remainder mark
A mark made by the publisher on the bottom edge of a book, usually with a stamp, permanent marking pen, or spray paint to indicate that it has been remaindered (sold at a discount following initial publication), as a means of distinguishing it from copies sold at list price or regular discount (see these examples, courtesy of My Wings Books). Because it indicates later release and alters condition, a remainder mark is considered a detriment to collectors.

Publisher's overstock (unsold copies of a book or other item) purchased by lot by a remainder dealer on the understanding that the items may be offered for sale at a substantially reduced price. Bound remainders may be marked to distinguish them from copies sold at list price. Unbound overstock may be bound in an inexpensive remainder binding or reduced to pulp if there is no market for the title. The author receives no royalty on remaindered copies. The fact that a book is remaindered does not necessarily reflect the quality of the work--the edition may have been too large, the published price too high, the subject matter esoteric or ephemeral, or the content revised and issued in a new edition. Abbreviated rem. Compare with cutouts. See also: job lot and remainder house.

A newer version of a previously produced motion picture, with a different cast, script, and credits, usually made to capitalize on the popularity of the original work, to pay homage to it, or to offer a more modern interpretation of the story (example: the 1996 remake by Jeremiah Chechik of the 1954 film noir classic Diabolique directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot). Remakes often fail to meet the expectations of viewers familiar with the original. In library cataloging, the fact that a film is a remake is indicated in the note area of the bibliographic record.

In printing, to rearrange the typographic elements that make up a printed page or an entire publication. Also, to repaginate a publication from beginning to end or just a portion of it. See also: make-up.

A leaf or sheet which has part of one or more of its outer margins replaced by paper (usually of similar weight and finish) cut to size and pasted to the leaf, or restored by the technique of leaf casting. A leaf or sheet with all four margins replaced is said to have been inlaid. To see examples, try a keyword search on the term in Google Images.

A small, original vignette drawing or painting, made by the artist in the margin of an etching, engraving, or other limited edition art print, often related in theme to the main image. The uniqueness of a remarque print gives it higher value in the collectors market. To see examples, try a search on the keywords "remarque print" in Google Images. Pronounced re-mark.

From the French word remboîter, meaning "to fit back into." A book that has been rebound, sometimes with fraudulent intent, in covers removed from another volume, usually a binding that is in better condition or more valuable or attractive. Remboîtage can be an act of salvage, but is more often sophistication. There is no equivalent for the term in the English language.

remote access
Communication with a geographically distant computer system or network as if one were a local user. To log on to a network server, the user may be required to enter an authorized username and/or password. Special communications software and/or hardware, such as a modem or dedicated line, may also be required. Wireless, cable modem, and DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) technologies provide alternative methods of accessing computer systems remotely. In most online library catalogs, a certain number of ports are reserved for remote access to accommodate off-site users. Compare with direct access. See also: authentication.

remote sensing image
A visual representation of the surface of the earth or another celestial body, obtained at a distance by means of a recording device designed to extend the reach of the human eye. Most remote sensing equipment is designed to measure electromagnetic radiation, force fields, or acoustic energy. Included in the category are aerial photographs, thermal (infrared) images, microwave images, sound traces (seismic, sonar, etc.), gamma ray images, etc. Click here to view a remote sensing image, courtesy of UNESCO. Landsat images can also been seen in Earth as Art: A Landsat Perspective, an online exhibit hosted by the Library of Congress. See also: photomap.

remote storage
See: off-site storage.

removed archives
Archives taken from the country in which they were originally accumulated, often under unusual circumstances, for example, by one of the combatants during a war or in its aftermath. Click here to see a list of German records captured during World War II, courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration. Synonymous with captured archives and migrated archives.

A printing term for notes or quotations set in smaller type at the foot of a page of text, for example, a book set in 12-point might have footnotes or endnotes set in 10-point or smaller type.

renaissance librarian
A librarian who cultivates a broad and deep understanding and appreciation of, and lively interest in, all aspects of librarianship, despite having developed at least one specialization. See also: scholar-librarian.

To propose revisions in the terms of a previously signed contract, license, or other formal agreement, often in response to unforeseen events, for example, concessions sought, in times of financial recession, by an employer bound by a union contract.

To extend the period of time for which a book or other item is loaned by a library, usually by the length of the normal loan period. Renewal policies vary, but most libraries allow at least one renewal for most types of materials. To avoid fines, items checked out must be renewed by the borrower on or before the due date. Some circulation systems allow the user to renew materials without staff assistance. See also: overdue notice.

Also, to extend the period for which a periodical subscription is to be delivered, usually by an additional year or period of years, in exchange for payment of a renewal fee by the subscriber. A price break may be given to subscribers who renew for multiple years. See also: automatic renewal and renewal notice.

An extension of the loan period for a book or other item, usually for the length of the normal borrowing period. Also, the reregistration of a borrower at the end of an established period of library membership. See also: overdue notice.

Also refers to an extension of the period during which a periodical subscription is to be delivered following payment of a renewal fee by the subscriber. See also: automatic renewal and renewal notice.

renewal invoice
An annual invoice authorizing the publisher or vendor to continue, upon payment, a library's subscriptions to one or more serial publications for an additional subscription period.

renewal list
An annual list of a library's subscriptions, provided by the publisher or vendor to enable the library to select the titles it wishes to continue receiving. The vendor uses the returned list to prepare a renewal invoice.

renewal notice
A notice sent by the publisher of a periodical to inform a subscriber or subscription agent that unless a renewal fee is paid before a designated expiration date, the subscription will end.

renewal of copyright
The Copyright Act of 1909 provided legal protection for an initial 28-year term with an optional 28-year extension, provided the copyright holder filed a renewal application with the U.S. Copyright Office before the end of the 28th year. Works for which copyright was not renewed entered the public domain. Under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, works that received copyright protection from 1964 to 1977 were granted an automatic renewal term, with no action required on behalf of the copyright holder. Works created on or after January 1, 1978 are not subject to renewal registration. Under current law, copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus an additional 70 years and is nonrenewable.

A major refurbishing of existing facilities to make them appear new or like new. In a library, this can mean anything from repainting, recarpeting, and installing new ADA-compliant furnishings and equipment to the complete gutting of an old building and reconstruction to meet current needs and contemporary standards of design (see this example). Extensive renovation may require moving the library to a temporary location until alterations are completed. Major renovations are reported annually in Library Journal and in Library and Book Trade Almanac. Compare with expansion and new construction. See also: retrofit.

rental collection
Books in high demand, circulated by a public library or bookstore for a small fee, often fiction bestsellers. Not all public libraries provide rental collections--some use a waiting list or allow holds to be placed on high-demand items to avoid charging fees. Also refers to a nonbook collection such as a videocassette or film library for which a rental fee is charged when an item is borrowed, usually to help meet the cost of acquisitions and maintenance (example: Facets Multimedia).

rental music
Music scores and parts distributed under an agreement allowing the renter use of the material for a fixed period of time in exchange for payment, after which it must be returned to the rental company. This type of arrangement occurs most often when demand for a composition with considerable instrumentation does not justify printing copies for sale or when the publisher wishes to retain control and monitor performances of the work, as in the case of Broadway musical scores.

In library acquisitions and bookselling, any order for a stock item placed after the initial order has been received. Reordering is necessary when the original order is lost or canceled, usually because the item was unavailable when the order was first placed.

Reissuing a previously published book in a different format to enhance its appeal to readers outside its primary market, sometimes by making it more affordable, as in a paperback edition, or easier to read, as in a large print edition.

A book or other publication in which the numbers originally assigned to successive pages have been changed. Synonymous with repaged. See also: remake.

The partial rehabilitation of a worn book or other item, including restoration of the cover and reinforcement of the hinges or joints, more extensive than mending but less extensive than recasing or rebinding. In most libraries, repairs are done in-house. A Simple Book Repair Manual is provided online by the Preservation Services department of the Dartmouth College Library. See also Three Basic Book Repair Procedures, courtesy of The Book Arts Web.

repeatable (R)
A MARC field that may occur more than once in the same bibliographic record, for example, the 600 field, reserved for personal names used as subject added entries. A repeatable subfield may occur more than once in the same field. The opposite of nonrepeatable (NR).

repetitive stress injury (RSI)
Tissue damage resulting from the frequent performance of tasks requiring repeated movements of the hands, arms, legs, or torso, for example, the stamping of due dates on books and other items at the circulation desk. Effects include chronic nerve and joint pain and swelling, carpal tunnel syndrome, and damage to the spine. RSI has been cited as a justification for the use of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology in libraries. Preventive measures include regular rest breaks and changes in the ergonomic design of the workplace. Click here to learn more about RSI in Wikipedia. Synonymous with musculoskeletal repetitive motion disorder and repetitive strain injury.

A book or other item purchased by a library to take the place of a lost, damaged, or worn-out copy of the same title, not necessarily of the same edition if the original edition is out of print. Also, a copy sent by a publisher or jobber as a substitute for one found by a library or other purchaser to contain imperfections.

The recovery of archived property (records, manuscripts, documents, etc.) by an organization or institution claiming ownership. Also refers to the writ or legal action by which such property is recovered.

A reproduction or copy of a work of art, especially one made by the artist who created the original or produced under the artist's supervision. Click here to see a replica of the Aztec Codex Borbonicus, courtesy of Wikipedia. In a more general sense, any very close reproduction or copy of an object, especially one made on a smaller scale than the original. Synonymous with doublette. Compare with facsimile and realia.

A separately published record of research findings, research still in progress, or other technical findings, usually bearing a report number and sometimes a grant number assigned by the funding agency. See also: ERIC document.

Also, an official record of the activities of a committee or corporate entity, the proceedings of a government body, or an investigation by an agency, whether published or private, usually archived or submitted to a higher authority, voluntarily or under mandate. In a more general sense, any formal account of facts or information related to a specific event or phenomenon, sometimes given at regular intervals. Abbreviated rept. See also: annual report.

report documentation page
A page in a scientific or technical report, giving all the pertinent bibliographic information needed by librarians and information specialists (including an abstract, distribution/availability statement, and keywords or identifiers), provided by federal government agencies in addition to the title page or title section (example: the NTIS bibliographic data sheet or Standard Form 298). For academic and industrial reports, it is an optional element. The report documentation page is not listed in the table of contents unless it appears as back matter, but is paginated whether it appears as front matter or back matter. An example can be seen in Appendix E of the ANSI/NISO Z39.18 standard for the preparation, presentation, and preservation of scientific and technical reports.

The physical space (building, room, area) reserved for the permanent or intermediate storage of archival materials (manuscripts, rare books, government documents, papers, photographs, etc.). To preserve and protect archival collections, modern repositories are equipped to meet current standards of environmental control and security. Whether a repository is open or closed to the public depends on the policy of the parent institution. Sometimes used synonymously with depository. See also: digital repository.

Public announcement of a position to be filled at a library, repeated following an interval after the initial job posting, usually because no suitable applications were received in response to the previous notice or because none of the recommended candidates accepted offer of employment. Reposting is often necessary to fill highly specialized positions for which the pool of qualified applicants is limited. The new announcement should clearly indicate that the position is reposted and whether the job description was revised since the last posting.

representative fraction (RF)
In cartography, the relationship of scale between distance on a map or chart and the actual distance on the area of land or sea represented, given with the title or in the legends as a ratio or fraction understood to be in standard units of measurement (example: 1:1,000,000 or 1/1,000,000). Click here to zoom in on an example printed on the lower-left-hand corner of a map of South America, courtesy of the Perry-Castañeda Library. Synonymous with fractional scale and natural scale. Compare with bar scale and statement of equivalency.

A new impression of an existing edition, often made by photographic means, or a new edition made from a new setting of type that is a copy of a previous impression, with no alterations in the text except perhaps the correction of typographical errors. The work may also be given a redesigned title page and cover. Date of reprinting is usually included in the details of publication on the verso of the title page. The review publication Library Journal includes a "Classic Returns" section in each issue, highlighting recent reprints. The Bookman's Glossary (Bowker, 1983) specifically recommends that the term be avoided in bibliographic description because it fails to distinguish edition, impression, issue, and state. Abbreviated repr. Compare with reissue. See also: reprint book and reprint publisher.

Also refers to a separately issued article, essay, chapter, or other portion of a previously published work, whether printed from a new setting of type or reproduced by other means. A directory listing of reprint services can be found at the beginning of the reference serial Magazines for Libraries. Compare with offprint.

reprint book
A collection consisting of articles previously published in one or more magazines or journals. The articles are used in their original format as camera-ready copy, rather than reset by the printer in uniform typographic style.

reprint publisher
A publishing company that specializes in new impressions of previously published titles that the original publisher has allowed to go out of print, despite continuing demand. Reprint rights must be negotiated with the copyright holder. The number of copies in a reprint edition is usually less than in the original edition.

A close copy of a two- or three-dimensional work of art, made without intent to deceive, by mechanical means or by hand, generally for the commercial market, for example, a print of a painting or drawing. Reproductions of large works are usually done on a smaller scale than the original. Price usually depends on quality and fidelity to the original (see these examples). Also refers to an exact copy of a written or printed document made by mechanical or electronic means, for example, a photocopy. See also: giclée print, microreproduction, and reprography.

A general term encompassing quick-service document reproduction or copying by any means except large-scale professional printing, including photography, microphotography, xerography, and photoduplication. For a more detailed overview of the various methods, see the entry by J.E. Davies in the International Encyclopedia of Information and Library Science (Routledge, 2003). Click here to connect to the reprographics section of the Conservation OnLine (CoOL) Web site.

The process by which a previously published work is reissued by a different publisher, without alteration of the text. Sometimes refers to the reprinting of such a work in another country. Also, any publication reissued in this manner.

Material used in bookbinding, which was originally intended for some other use. For example, vellum used as a writing surface in a manuscript, but subsequently cut up to serve as paste-downs (see this example, courtesy of the Princeton University Library).

Request for Comments (RFC)
A technical or organizational specification about the Internet published by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). RFCs are either informational or standards track. A standards track RFC may eventually become an Internet Standard. Click here to view the IETF RFC Webpage.

Request for Proposal (RFP)
A document prepared by a prospective purchaser, such as a library or library system, inviting a vendor or supplier to submit a bid for the acquisition of materials, equipment, and/or services, usually based on a statement by the library detailing specifications. Most public agencies use an RFP process in awarding contracts.

request letter
A written request for the loan of special collections materials for exhibition, signed by the director, department head, or curator of the borrowing institution and addressed to the appropriate staff member of the lending institution, providing 1) the title of the exhibition, the name and credentials of its curator(s), and a brief description of its purpose and scope; 2) inclusive dates of the exhibition and of the loan; 3) a full description of each item to be borrowed, and indicating 4) whether or not a catalog and/or Web site will accompany the exhibition and 5) the borrower's willingness to conform to conditions of the loan specified by the lender, including requirements for safe transportation. In Guidelines for Borrowing and Lending Special Collections Materials for Exhibition (January 2005), the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) recommends that the request letter be accompanied by a facilities report.

required if applicable and readily available (R)
Under OCLC input standards, a field or subfield of the MARC record in which data must be entered if (1) appropriate in AACR2 or essential for efficient access or effective processing, and (2) it is available in or on the item in hand, from other bibliographic records in the OCLC online union catalog, or from OCLC authority file records. Compare with mandatory and optional.

A written request, usually submitted to the acquisitions department of a library on a standardized form, for the order of materials, equipment, supplies, or services. Compare with purchase order.

The revival of a motion picture, videorecording, or music recording by the original distributor or releasing agent subsequent to its initial release, usually in response to the potential for renewed public interest in the work. Some film classics, such as Walt Disney's Fantasia and David Selznick's Gone with the Wind, have had more than one rerelease. The new version may involve a change in format (for example, from 35mm to 70mm) or in other aspects of production. Feature films rereleased on DVD sometimes include two different versions, trailers, and/or documentary material about the work.

In printing, a job redone because the quality of the first press run was not acceptable. Also refers to the rebroadcast of previously aired television programming, often episodes that received the highest ratings when first shown, more common during the summer months than at other times of the year.

Systematic, painstaking investigation of a topic, or in a field of study, often employing hypothesis and experimentation, undertaken by a person intent on revealing new facts, theories, or principles, or determining the current state of knowledge of the subject. The results are usually reported in a primary journal, in conference proceedings, or in a monograph by the researcher(s) who conducted the study. In the sciences, methodology is also reported to allow the results to be verified. In academic libraries, instruction is designed to teach research skills. Beth Ashmore maintains a Web site for The Researching Librarian. See also: heuristic and library research.

research assistant
A person, often a student or post-graduate employed on a temporary contract, who helps a writer or researcher by investigating the subject of the writer's interest, and by providing related support services.

research collection
A library collection sufficiently comprehensive to support specialized research in an academic discipline or field. A good research collection includes primary sources, secondary sources, and the bibliographic tools needed to conduct an exhaustive search of the literature. Development of such a collection requires considerable time and the knowledge and experience of one or more subject specialists. See also: research library.

A person who conducts a careful, systematic investigation of a subject, or inquiry in a field of study, to establish facts, reveal underlying principles, and determine the current state of knowledge. Beth Ashmore maintains a Web site for The Researching Librarian. See also: research library.

research guide
A printed or online resource that provides detailed information, instructions, and advice concerning the best strategies, techniques, and resources for research in a subject or field of study. Book-length research guides are usually shelved in the reference section of a library (example: Shakespeare: A Study and Research Guide by David M. Bergeron and Geraldo U. de Sousa). Many academic libraries provide brief handouts on a display rack near the reference desk, explaining research techniques and listing finding tools appropriate to each discipline. Click here to see an online research guide for the field of business (Harvard Business School).

Research Libraries Group (RLG)
Founded in 1974, RLG was a consortium of over 160 universities, national libraries, archives, historical societies, museums, and related institutions with substantial research collections. Devoted to improving access to information through collaboration, RLG maintained Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN), an online bibliographic database of nearly 88 million items. In 2006, the RLG membership approved a proposal by the RLG Board of Directors and the OCLC Board of Trustees to combine the two organizations. RLIN has since been integrated into OCLC WorldCat, and RLG's programs and initiatives have joined the OCLC Programs and Research division. See also: conspectus.

Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN)
See: Research Libraries Group (RLG).

research library
A library containing a comprehensive collection of materials in a specific field, academic discipline, or group of disciplines, including primary and secondary sources, selected to meet the information needs of serious researchers (example: Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C.). The primary emphasis in research libraries is on the accumulation of materials and the provision of access services to scholars qualified to make use of them. In most large research libraries, access to collections containing rare books and manuscripts is restricted. See also: Association of Research Libraries, Center for Research Libraries, and Research Libraries Group.

research paper
A written composition, usually five or more pages in length, assigned as an exercise in a formal course of study. The writer is expected to state a thesis and advance a logical argument based on supporting information found in a systematic investigation of the topic. The source of quotations, facts, and ideas not those of the author must be documented in footnotes or endnotes and a bibliography. See also: paper mill.

In academic libraries, materials given a shorter loan period (one-hour, three-hour, overnight, three-day, etc.) for a limited period of time (usually one term or semester) at the request of the instructor, to ensure that all the students enrolled in a course have an opportunity to use them. Items on closed reserve must be used on library premises. Instructors sometimes put personal copies on reserve, usually at their own risk.

Fines charged for overdue reserve items are higher than for materials not on reserve to encourage prompt return. In some academic libraries, reserves are available electronically, usually as an option in the online catalog or through software accessible via the library's Web site. Synonymous with reserve collection and short loan collection. See also: open reserve.

The job of returning books and other items to the shelves of a library in correct call number sequence after they have been used, usually performed by a student assistant in an academic library or by a staff member called a page in a public library. The University of Illinois Library provides a brief online tutorial on Proper Shelving Habits. See also: reshelving cart and shelf reading.

reshelving cart
A double-sided wheeled cart equipped with two to three shelves to hold recently returned items until they are aready to be transported to the stacks and placed back on the shelf (see this example). If a book or periodical volume is listed as available in the catalog but is "not on the shelf" (nos), it may be on a cart waiting to be reshelved. Some online catalogs indicate in the catalog record the circulation status of items "recently returned." Synonymous with book truck.

A two-step delivery method in which a publication ordered from a vendor is first shipped by the publisher to the vendor, then sent by the vendor to the library accompanied by an invoice. Total shipping cost is usually higher than in drop shipment.

A library employment program in which new graduates are offered a one-year full-time professional contract position, often with the opportunity for second year renewal. Some academic libraries have adopted residency programs as a means of recruiting minorities into the profession. Residents may be encouraged to explore different areas of librarianship on the job. For a first-hand account of a resident experience, see "Our Experience as Minority Residents" by Sylvia S. Hu and Demetria E. Patrick in the May 2006 issue of C&RL News. Compare with internship.

residual rights
Legal rights in a creative work that remain with the copyright holder subsequent to signing a contract with the publisher. Also, any rights that eventually revert to the copyright holder when the time period or purpose stated in the contract has elapsed or been discharged. Compare with subsidiary rights.

The portion of an author's total body of work considered by scholars and critics to be of lasting value. See also: classic.

Formal notice of an employee's intention to terminate employment, usually given to the employer in writing, effective on a specific date, because the employee has found other employment, wishes to retire at the end of a career, or for personal reasons. Most employment contracts require 30-60 days notice to allow the employer sufficient time to reallocate workload while the search for a replacement is conducted. Compare with dismissal.

A printed sheet or leaf in a book that has been washed, usually to remove writing, stains, or acid from the paper, then recoated with a sizing compound to add stiffness and provide a protective finish.

A measure of the amount of fine detail in an image rendered or retained on a computer or television screen, in a photograph, or on a printed page, expressed as the number of pixels or dots per inch, line, or centimeter. The more units, the higher the resolution and the sharper the image. See also: SVGA and VGA.

In cartography, the accuracy with which a given scale is capable of depicting the location and shape of geographic features on a map or chart. As a general rule, the larger the scale, the higher the resolution. As scale decreases, resolution is reduced and the boundaries of features must be simplified, represented as points, or omitted entirely. In remote sensing, resolution is the rate or intensity of data sampling, significant in four measurement dimensions: radiometric, spectral, spatial, and temporal (Landsat 7 Project Glossary).

Also refers to a formal statement of opinion or intention, issued by an assembly, organization, or group. In the United States, the text of congressional resolutions can be found in the federal government documents section of depository libraries and online via FDsys: Federal Digital System.

In literature, the term is used synonymously with denouement, the final phase of a work of narrative fiction or drama in which unanswered questions are resolved and the action brought to a logical conclusion.

Resource Description and Access (RDA)
A set of content standards for cataloging materials held in libraries and other cultural institutions, RDA was developed over a six-year period to replace Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, 2nd edition, 2002 revision (AACR2). While rooted in Anglo-American cataloging traditions, the organization of RDA is based on international standards developed by the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA), such as Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records (FRBR) and Functional Requirements for Authority Data (FRAD).

RDA was published in 2010 under the title RDA Toolkit by the American Library Association, the Canadian Library Association, and CILIP (UK). Although designed to function as an online resource, the RDA Toolkit was also issued in a loose-leaf print edition a few months later. The Joint Steering Committee for Development of RDA continues to modify and improve the new standards. Although RDA has been controversial, the Library of Congress announced plans to implement the new standards in March 2013. Click here to learn more about RDA implementation.

Resources for College Libraries (RCL)
A direct successor to the third edition of Books for College Libraries (1988), the print edition of RCL is a seven-volume set offering a core collection of hand-selected titles in 58 curriculum-specific subject areas, with the volumes organized in broad subject categories: Humanities, Languages and Literature, History, Social Sciences and Professional Studies, Science and Technology, and Interdisciplinary and Area Studies. The seventh volume provides cross-referencing indexes, indicating the relationship between RCL subject taxonomy and LCC ranges. New to this edition is the selection of electronic resources and Web sites essential for undergraduate library collections. RCL is published by Bowker and CHOICE: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, a publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). Click here to connect to the online version of RCL.

resource sharing
The activities that result from an agreement, formal or informal, among a group of libraries (usually a consortium or network) to share collections, data, facilities, personnel, etc., for the benefit of their users and to reduce the expense of collection development.

respect des fonds
The principle of provenance first developed by French archivists in the early 19th century under which the organic nature of the archival records of an individual or agency dictates that they be maintained separately with respect to source and in their original physical order, rather than combined or intermingled with those of different origin.

A candidate for an academic degree who must defend, against one or more opponents, a thesis proposed by a faculty moderator acting as the praeses in a formal disputation.

response rate
The percentage of people sampled in a questionnaire or survey who reply to it. Synonymous with completion rate or return rate.

response time
In computing, the amount of time that elapses between the submission of input (a query, command, data, etc.) and the return of results (output) by the system. On the Internet, response time depends on speed of connection and amount of traffic on the network, which varies with time of day, day of week, etc. When a server goes offline, response time may be delayed indefinitely. Compare with turnaround time.

responsible party
In library cataloging, the organization accountable for the data content, content designation, and transcription of data within a MARC record. In unmodified records, the organization identified as the original cataloging source in 008/39 and/or 040 $c (Transcribing agency) is responsible for the data content of the record, and the organization identified as the transcribing agency in field 040 is responsible for the content designation and data transcription. In modified records, organizations identified in field 040 $a (Original cataloging agency) and $d (Modifying agency) are collectively responsible for the data content, and organizations identified as transcribing or modifying agencies in field 040 $c and $d are collectively responsible for the content designation and data transcription. (MARC 21 Concise Formats)

For the purpose of library cataloging, the act of having created the intellectual content of a work, in writing or any other medium of expression, usually indicated by the name of the personal or corporate author in or on the chief source of information used by catalogers in describing the item. In AACR2, authorship is given in the statement of responsibility in the title and statement of responsibility area of the bibliographic record. Authorship is interpreted in the broad sense of having written, edited, compiled, composed, adapted, translated, etc., the work. If authorship cannot be determined with certainty, a work is said to be of unknown authorship and is cataloged under the title. A creative work is the intellectual property of the author and in most countries, the author's rights in the work are legally protected by copyright.

The physical process of returning a damaged, worn, or otherwise altered document to what is perceived to be its original condition, or to as close an approximation of the original condition as possible, ideally (but not necessarily) by the use of good conservation practices. Before restoration can begin, deterioration must be stabilized by whatever method is most appropriate. To preserve the evidential value of an item in its altered condition, care is taken to make repairs both visible and reversible, if possible. For very rare and valuable items, a record may be made of the measures taken. See these examples, courtesy of Craft Bookbinding Co. Compare with refurbishing. See also: rebinding.

restricted access
The privilege of using a library collection under specific conditions established as a matter of library policy. In archives and special collections, the use of rare books, manuscripts, and other unique and valuable materials may be limited to a particular room or a certain method or by appointment only. In the United States, large private university libraries may limit access to the stacks to registered students, faculty, and staff and to outside researchers granted special permission to use specific collections. The opposite of unrestricted. Compare with controlled access. See also: closed stacks and open stacks.

Also refers to the policy of limiting access to an online resource or service to members of a particular community, such as the students, faculty, and staff of a university or the walk-in patrons of a public library. The most common method is for the vendor to check the network address of the user�s computer. Passwords or certificates may also be issued.

In public libraries, access to controversial or sensitive materials may be limited by placing them on a "restricted shelf" or in a locked case, usually to prevent children from using them without parental permission. The American Library Association has stated that such restrictions are a violation of the Library Bill of Rights; however, when restricted placement is adopted to protect library materials from theft or mutilation, or because of statutory authority or institutional mandate, such policies must be carefully formulated and administered to ensure they do not violate established principles of intellectual freedom.

restricted placement
Storage of library materials in a staff-only area, usually to deter theft. Circulation of CDs, DVDs, and video games may be controlled by displaying only empty cases or copied cover art in a publicly accessible area. Available space may limit restricted placement of large media collections, and additional staff time is required for retrieval. Also, patrons accustomed to a degree of privacy in their borrowing transactions may hesitate to request materials from restricted areas.

In printmaking, to make one or more additional impressions from the same plate or block after the original edition of the print has been issued. Restrikes are usually unsigned and unnumbered.

A summing up. In hiring, a statement of the experience and qualifications an applicant brings to the position. Handbooks on resume preparation are available in the reference section of most public and academic libraries. The New Members Round Table (NMRT) of the American Library Association (ALA) provides a resume review service for recent library school graduates. See also Resume Writing, courtesy of Boston College. Librarians and recent LIS graduates can post a resume online at LISJobs.com. See also: curriculum vitae.

A serial for which publication has started up again following a temporary suspension. Resumed numbering means the same sequence is used for numbering successive issues/parts as was in place when publication halted.

retail price
See: list price.

The unspooling of archival magnetic tape (audiotape and videotape) onto a take-up reel from which it is rewound at controlled tension and speed to redistribute stresses and keep the edges of the tape from touching the spool, a procedure preservationists recommend for audiovisual collections every three years. Retensioning is also recommended for optimal performance when using a new tape and after exposure to major temperature changes or other shock.

Holding or keeping materials in possession, usually in a desired state or condition, as opposed to disposing of them. In archives, the retention period for documents is usually indicated in the disposition schedule. Academic and research libraries generally purchase materials with the intention of retaining them indefinitely; public libraries weed on the basis of usage and condition. Long-term retention of library materials may require preservation measures, such as reformatting.

Also refers to the extent to which a company, organization, or institution is able to keep its personnel from accepting employment elsewhere and to the capacity of an academic institution to keep students enrolled through graduation. See also: turnover.

retention period
In archives, the length of time that records of a specific category or origin must be retained before they are transferred to intermediate storage or given some other disposition. In the absence of statutory or regulatory stipulations, the period is usually determined by current usage and projected need.

Under Title 44 U.S.C., a federal document received by a depository library in the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) must be retained for a minimum of 5 years, unless it is a duplicate copy or has been superseded by a more recent edition. A publication may be discarded after 5 years, if it has been offered to other depository libraries without result.

retention schedule
See: disposition schedule.

Resignation from a position of employment with the intention of ending a career, a step usually taken at an age when the retiree is in a position to live on other income (pension, retirement savings, social security, etc.). Early retirement is resignation before the age at which most employees cease working, sometimes in response to a special offer of eligibility or compensation made by management ("golden handshake"). Under a policy of mandatory or compulsory retirement, employees are not allowed to continue working beyond a certain age.

retitled edition
All the copies of a book reissued under a title that is not the same as the title of the original edition (example: Profiles of American Labor Unions [1998], a retitled second edition of American Directory of Organized Labor, first published in 1992). In AACR2, the original title is entered as a note in the bibliographic description when the item is cataloged.

A photograph or illustration that has been altered by hand to remove a flaw, add a detail, or make the image clearer (see these examples).

retracted publication
A publication type used in the MEDLINE database to designate an article or book withdrawn or disavowed in whole or in part by the author(s) or an authorized representative in a formal issuance from the author, publisher, or other authorized agent. The publication type assigned in MEDLINE to the author's statement of retraction is: retraction of publication.

retraction of publication
A publication type used in the MEDLINE database to designate an author's statement withdrawing or disavowing in whole or in part the results of a study reported in a previously published article or book. The retraction is normally sent to the editor of the publication in which the article appeared, to be published under the rubric "retraction" or in the form of a letter. The publication type assigned in MEDLINE to the publication being retracted is: retracted publication.

Teaching or learning new skills, often in response to changes in conditions of employment or in the economic environment.

retroactive period of initial accreditation
Students who graduated from a library and information studies program before it was granted initial accreditation by the Committee on Accreditation (COA) of the American Library Association (ALA) are considered graduates of an ALA-accredited program if they graduated in the academic year preceding the one in which accreditation was granted.

To adapt an older library facility to accommodate improvements, for example, in handicapped access. Retrofitting for information technology upgrades may involve not only installation of new equipment and furnishings but also structural alterations, reallocation of space, changes in lighting and HVAC, additional electrical and telecom wiring, and attention to noise control, traffic patterns, etc.

Including works created or published in the past, rather than current or recently issued materials, as in a retrospective bibliography. In a more general sense, anything pertaining to events or activities that occurred in the past, rather than the present, as in the retrospective conversion of previously cataloged bibliographic records to another format.

retrospective bibliography
A bibliography restricted to materials published in the past, usually limited to a specific period of time (example: Agriculture and the GATT: A Retrospective Bibliography, 1948-1980 by Wayne K. Olson). The opposite of current bibliography.

retrospective binding
A binding done in conscious imitation of an earlier style (not necessarily of the period in which the work was originally published), fashionable during the 19th century (see this example of a retrospective Grolier binding, courtesy of the Princeton University Library). Synonymous with antique and period binding. Compare with facsimile binding.

retrospective conversion
The process of converting existing bibliographic records from manual, human-readable form, such as a cards in a card catalog, into machine-readable format, usually by matching the old records one at a time to those contained in an authoritative database of machine-readable records. Once a match is made, the cataloger downloads as much of the machine-readable record as the library needs, usually for a modest fee. In the United States, OCLC provides most of the MARC records used in retrospective conversion. Abbreviated recon. Compare with recataloging.

In a more general sense, the process of converting nondigital source material to digital form.

retrospective search
A search for information that is no longer current. Bibliographic databases that support this type of searching usually index information in repositories and archival collections in which documents may be added but are rarely modified or removed. Some search software allows the user to specify a publication date range, to exclude current materials.

In interlibrary loan, materials that the lending library expects the borrowing library to return, usually within a designated period of time unless renewed, as opposed to materials, such as photocopied articles, provided without expectation of return.

Also refers to an item that may be returned by a library to the seller for credit, usually under specific conditions explicitly stated in the seller's return policy.

return on investment (ROI)
In library performance evaluation, a technique for quantifying the extent to which investment in a library helps generate income or other tangible benefits for its parent institution, clientele, or community. One way of measuring ROI is to calculate what patrons would spend, in time and direct costs, to get the information they need without access to the library (see the Library Use Value Calculator, courtesy of Brian Herzog and the Chelmsford Public Library).

return policy
The conditions established by a publisher under which items ordered, shipped, and delivered may be returned for credit by a library or bookseller. Items received in damaged condition not the fault of the receiver are understood to be returnable. The return policy for undamaged items is normally stated on the publisher's invoice, usually in code, NR or XR indicating no returns or nonreturnable. Items that have been processed or specially bound at the request of the purchaser are not returnable unless a major defect is found within a reasonable time. When an item is returned for a valid reason, a replacement copy is usually sent by the publisher. See also: returns.

Books or other items sent back to the publisher by a bookseller who purchased them under terms allowing unsold stock to be returned for credit. Also, items returned to a publisher or jobber by a library under an approval plan or book lease plan or because they were found upon delivery to be damaged or defective. The conditions under which items may be returned for credit are stated in the publisher's return policy. On the invoice, the symbol NR or XR indicates that returns are not allowed.

reused number
In Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), a class number assigned to a different subject than the one it represented in a previous edition. As a general rule, numbers are reused only in complete revisions or when the reused number has been vacant for at least two consecutive editions.

reversal film
A special type of color or black and white film stock used in motion picture production to short-cut the traditional negative-positive printing stage by producing a positive image from a positive without an intervening negative, or a negative image from a negative without an intervening positive. The word "reversal" refers to the chemical processes used in development, not to the image itself. According to The Film Preservation Guide (National Film Preservation Foundation, 2004), a sizeable portion of the 16mm and nearly all the 8mm and Super 8mm prints in the collections of American film libraries and archives are reversal originals. A print made from an original negative can be distinguished from reversal film by examining the edge near the perforations. If the edge is clear, the print was made from a negative; if black, it is probably reversal film.

reverse chronological
The arrangement of data, records, items, headings, entries, etc., according to their relation in time, from the most recent to the earliest. In online catalogs and bibliographic databases, the default display of records retrieved in a keywords search is often by publication date in reverse chronological order. The opposite of chronological.

reverse dictionary
A dictionary organized in a non-standard way, for example, alphabetically by word endings (example: The Rhyming Dictionary of the English Language by John Walker) or by concept, phrase, or definition, rather than by headword (example: Bernstein's Reverse Dictionary by Theodore M. Bernstein).

In document conservation, the degree to which a procedure can be undone without adversely affecting the condition of the item. As a general rule, reversibility is preferred because future research or legal developments may require that an item be restored to its original condition. However, since complete reversibility may be difficult if not impossible to achieve, it must be balanced against other priorities. See also: irreversible.

reversion of copyright
Return of copyright to the author under conditions stated in the publishing agreement, usually when the publisher fails to keep the publication in print.

An evaluative account of a recent artistic performance or exhibit, or of a newly published literary or scholarly work, usually written and signed by a qualified person, for publication in a current newspaper, magazine, or journal. The account can be descriptive, reportorial, comparative, or critical or serve as a vehicle for a lengthy essay in which the reviewer discusses several recently published works (omnibus review) or a broader topic for which the works reviewed serve as a springboard. In libraries, selection decisions are based primarily on reviews. Synonymous with critique. Compare with puff. See also: review lag.

Book reviews are indexed by the year in which they were published and by author of title reviewed in Book Review Digest and Book Review Index, available in the reference section of most academic and large public libraries. Film reviews are indexed by title of film under the heading "Motion picture reviews--Single works" in the volume of Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature corresponding to date of release. Reviews can also be located online in general periodical databases by entering keywords from the title of the work reviewed as search terms.

Also refers to a periodical devoted primarily to publishing articles of criticism and appraisal (example: Romantic Review).

review copy
A complimentary copy of a new book or other work in its final form sent by the publisher at no charge to a person who writes reviews, to the editor of a publication that includes reviews or book announcements, to an opinion leader in the field, or to a bookseller in the hope of attracting favorable comment, often with a review slip laid in. Academic libraries sometimes receive review copies as gifts from faculty members who write reviews. Synonymous with press copy. Compare with advance copy. See also: review publication.

A person who writes a brief or extended evaluation of a new book or other creative work, usually at the request of the editor of a publication that includes reviews. Scholarly works are usually reviewed by the author's peers. Reviews published in library review publications, such as CHOICE, Library Journal, and Booklist, are written by librarians and academic professionals actively engaged in collection development. In the performing arts, reviews are written by critics whose response can determine the success or failure of a production.

review journal
A scholarly journal devoted to the publication of articles providing analysis of trends in an academic field or summaries of the current state of research on topics of particular interest within the field (example: Statistical Science: A Review Journal of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics). Articles may be submitted at the editor's invitation. See also: annual review.

review lag
The interval of time between the publication of a new book, or the release or first performance of a creative work, and the appearance of reviews. For popular fiction and nonfiction written by well-known authors, the delay may be a matter of days or weeks, especially if galleys or review copies are distributed by the publisher to prospective reviewers in advance of the publication date, but for scholarly titles, the lag may exceed a year.

review of the literature
See: literature review.

review publication
A newspaper, magazine, or journal devoted primarily to publishing reviews of new books and other publications (serials, nonprint media, etc.). Some also provide feature articles, regular columns, author interviews, literature reviews, etc., and most include book announcements and other advertising. Directory information for review publications is available in the reference serial Literary Market Place.

General review publications:
CHOICE: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries
Independent Publisher
Kirkus Reviews
Library Journal (LJ)
Publisher's Weekly (PW)
Quill & Quire
New York Review of Books (NYRB)
New York Times Book Review (NYTBR)
Small Press
Times Literary Supplement (TLS)

Children's and young adult literature:
Appraisal: Science Books for Young People
Bookbird: A Journal of International Children's Literature
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB)
Children's Literature Review (CLR)
The Horn Book Magazine
The Lion and the Unicorn
School Library Journal (SLJ)

Specialized review publications:
American Reference Books Annual (ARBA)
AudioFile Magazine
The Drood Review of Mystery
Lambda Book Report
The Mystery Review
Video Librarian

Click here to connect to the Yahoo! list of online literary review services. For a metasearch engine for book reviews, see ReviewsOfBooks.com.

review slip
A brief notice or form letter sent by the publisher of a new book to a book reviewer or bookseller with a free copy of the work, informing the recipient that the item is a review copy and requesting its consideration.

Reviews on Cards (ROC)

revised edition
An edition in which a previously published work is substantially altered by correction, deletion, or the addition of supplementary material, either by the original author/editor or another writer, usually to expand the content or bring it up-to-date. Some revised editions are not as "revised" as they claim to be (caveat emptor). The extent of revision may be indicated in a new foreword or preface. Frequency of revision usually depends on the amount of new material available but may also be linkd to a decline in sales of the preceding edition. In library cataloging, the abbreviation Rev. ed. is given in the edition statement of the bibliographic record to indicate that an edition is revised. Usually synonymous with second edition. Compare with expanded edition.

Text that has been altered by the original author, or by another writer, usually to correct, amend, update, or otherwise improve it (see this example). In books, the result may be published as a revised edition. Compare with rewrite.

In Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), the published result of editorial work that changes the text of any class of the schedules. Three degrees of revision are recognized:

Routine revision - Updates terminology, clarifies notes, provides modest expansions of existing notation
Extensive revision - Major reworking of subdivisions, but basic outline of the schedule is left intact
Complete revision (formerly called a phoenix) - Base numbers remain the same as in previous edition, but virtually all subdivisions are altered

In an extensive or complete revision, changes are indicated in comparative and equivalence tables, rather than by the addition of relocation notes in the affected schedule or table.

Also, a change made in Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules by the Joint Committee for Revision of AACR2 (JSC) as the result of a formal rule revision process.

A popular theatrical entertainment consisting of a series of brief, loosely connected songs, dances, and dramatic skits or sketches, often satirical, with emphasis on visual spectacle. Revues enjoyed a Golden Age on Broadway from about 1916 until 1932. Today, they are popular mainly as college entertainment.

reward of merit
A small printed or handwritten document awarded to a student in school, sometimes at a special ceremony, in recognition of good behavior or outstanding scholastic achievement. The practice became popular in the 19th century as printing techniques evolved to make this form of ephemera more readily available to educators (see this example). Click here to learn more about rewards of merit, courtesy of the American Antiquarian Society.

A motorized or hand-cranked geared device with a spindle on which a reel of motion picture film can be mounted, used in pairs at an editing bench or workstation to control the winding of film from reel to reel for inspection and to transfer it from reel to core for storage without stressing the perforations. When fitted with a long spindle, several reels can be unwound and rewound simultaneously. Synonymous with rewinder. Also, the process of winding a tape or film back to the beginning after it has been played to make it ready for the next use. Most libraries request that borrowers rewind audiocassettes and videocassettes before returning them.

A digital storage medium capable of being written, erased, and rewritten repeatedly, for example, magnetic tape or disk, as opposed to a medium that is read-only or write once, read many (WORM).

To put text already written into different words or form, making more extensive changes than in a revision. In journalism, to convert news copy submitted in rough form by one or more reporters into a version suitable for publication.

See: representative fraction.

See: Request for Comments.

An abbreviation of radio frequency identification. The use of microchips to tag library materials and the library card, enabling patrons to check out items by walking through a self-service station equipped with an antenna that emits low-frequency radio waves. When an RFID tag (transponder) passes through the electromagnetic zone, a reader (antenna + transceiver) decodes the data encoded in the tag's integrated circuit, passing it to a computer that automatically links data from the physical item(s) to the patron record corresponding to the library card. Line-of-sight is not required for this wireless non-contact system. In some libraries, RFID technology has replaced barcodes and optical technology in circulation systems. Tags are available in various shapes and sizes for use in a wide range of applications, with read/write capability for interactive applications. For more information on RFID in libraries, please see the January 2009 issue of Library Journal.

Because high-frequency radio waves can be used to track moving objects at a distance, the introduction of RFID technology in libraries has raised concerns about privacy. In January 2005, the Council of the American Library Association adopted a Resolution on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Technology and Privacy Principles to address issues of privacy and confidentiality. Click here to learn more about RFID technology. See also: self-checkout and skimming.

RFID scanner
In libraries that use radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, a device designed to assist staff in circulation and stack maintenance by automatically reading the unique RFID tag attached to each item. Portable models can be used in the stacks for shelf reading, inventory, weeding, and locating items placed on hold or missing from the shelf. The Digital Library Assistant trademarked by 3M is a handheld model (see this example).

RFID tag
A digital transponder designed to be attached to or embedded in an object, containing data which can be passed to a computer by an electromagnetic reader positioned within several yards of the object. RFID technology is wireless and does not require contact or line-of-sight. In some libraries, RFID tags have replaced barcodes on library materials, for use in circulation (self-checkout), security, and inventory control (see these examples). Because RFID tags can be read through the item, the tags in an entire stack of books can be read simultaneously without opening the covers. RFID tags designed to fit around the hole at the center of a CD or DVD are known as donut tags.

See: Request for Proposal.

An abbreviation of relative humidity. See: humidity.

rhumb line
In navigation, the line followed by a ship sailing on a fixed course or on a wind blowing continuously in the same direction. On a map, chart, or globe, the line representing the path taken when a constant compass bearing is maintained, cutting across successive meridians at a constant angle. On a sphere, a rhumb line is a spherical spiral running from pole to pole; on a Mercator projection, it is a straight line; and on a polar projection, a logarithmic spiral. A great circle is the shortest distance between two points on a sphere, not a rhumb line. Click here to see the term illustrated, courtesy of Mathworks.com. On early nautical charts, called portolans, rhumb lines representing the eight primary winds (or directions) are drawn in black (or sometimes gold); the eight half-winds in green; and the sixteen quarter-winds in red, often emanating from a graphic device called a wind rose. Click here to see rhumb lines on a 17th-century nautical chart of Plymouth Sound and here to see them on an 18th-century chart of the Mediterranean Sea (National Maritime Museum). Also spelled rhumbline. Synonymous with rhumb and loxodrome.

rhyming dictionary
A dictionary in which the words of a language are listed alphabetically by phonetic ending to assist writers of verse. In libraries, rhyming dictionaries are usually shelved in the language section of the reference collection. They are also available online (see RhymeZone).

See: rule interpretation.

See: Recording Industry Association of America.

rich text
Machine-readable text that includes formatting for page layout (boldface, underlining, italic, fonts, etc.). The term is also used for a text document that includes multimedia (graphics, audio, and video). Compare with plain text.

A puzzle or problem in the form of a misleading statement or question containing clues expressed in a manner that requires ingenuity and a sense of humor to arrive at the correct answer or solution (in the parlor game "Charades" the clues are visual). Very popular with young readers, collections of riddles are available in the juvenile section of most public libraries. Click here and here for examples. Synonymous with conundrum.

In a more general sense, any puzzling or enigmatic person, phenomenon, or saying.

Right of Publicity
The right of an individual to control and profit from the commercial use of his or her name, image, likeness, voice, and persona (individual identity). In the United States, there is currently no uniform federal law protecting such a right, but some of the 50 states grant the right to celebrities and public personalities, and others extend it to all individuals. Survivability also varies from state to state, as does length of the term of protection. Synonymous with personality rights.

The exclusive privilege of receiving the benefits associated with ownership of a literary property, the most important of which is the right of first publication, protected under copyright law in most countries. In the case of books, volume rights give the publisher the exclusive right to publish a work in volume form within a specific geographic territory, including the right to reprint in paperback, book club, or textbook edition and to reprint the work in its entirety in a single issue of a periodical or in an anthology. Subsidiary rights include serialization, abridgment, translation, foreign publication, excerpt, quotation, reproduction, commercial exploitation, and adaptation for performance on stage, as a motion picture, or on radio or television. Rights may be transferred or sold by the owner to another person or entity. Under U.S. copyright law, rights are subject to limitation (see fair use and first sale). See also: compulsory rights, infringement, moral rights, and residual rights.

rights metadata
See: administrative metadata.

A style of border decoration used in 14th- and 15th-century illuminated manuscripts, composed of an intricately branching pattern of thin "string" foliage, more spiky in appearance and usually less colorful than acanthus. Click here to view examples in a 15th-century Dutch Book of Hours (Bodleian Library, MS Douce d.19) and here to see it used with gilding in the 15th-century Burnet Psalter (University of Aberdeen Library). The style is common in 14th- and 15th-century French manuscripts, for example, Concerning the Fates of Illustrious Men and Women illuminated by the Boucicaut Master (Getty Museum, MS 63). In some manuscripts, rinceaux is combined with other styles of foliate decoration, as in this 15th-century French Book of Hours (Morgan Library, MS M.1000).

ring binding
A form of loose-leaf binder consisting of a number of metal rings (usually three) fixed in a metal or hard plastic spine. The rings are designed to open, usually at the center, by means of pressure tabs at the top and bottom of the spine, allowing prepunched leaves to be individually added or removed, used in libraries for materials such as loose-leaf services that require frequent updating. Unlike post bindings, ring bindings open flat.

See: Research Libraries Group.

See: Research Libraries Group (RLG).

road atlas
A book of maps showing the roads, highways, towns, and cities in a specific state, province, region, or country, often with mileage between major destinations (example: Rand McNally Road Atlas and Vacation Guide). Updated annually for retail sale to motorists and travelers, most include an index of place names (gazetteer) at the end, giving the location of cities, towns, and other geographic features by means of grid coordinates on the road maps. For an interactive online road atlas, see MapQuest or Rand McNally. Compare with roadbook.

A travel guide, often published in mechanical binding, describing for motorists the roads of a country or route, with maps and itineraries and sometimes a gazetteer, especially popular with bikers. Compare with road atlas.

road fiction
Works of imaginative fiction in which a life-transforming journey is an essential element of the action (examples: On the Road [1957] by Jack Kerouac and the 1969 film Easy Rider directed by Dennis Hopper).

road map
A map showing the location of the roads and highways passable to vehicles within a given area (county, state, province, country), for the use of travelers (see this 18th-century road map of England and Wales, courtesy of the Folger Shakespeare Library). Smaller in scale than a city map, a modern road map usually includes a table of distances between major towns and cities, a gazetteer, one or more larger-scale inset maps of major metropolitan areas, and symbols indicating service and rest areas, scenic routes, toll roads, major parks and museums, campgrounds, airports, etc. A road atlas is a collection of road maps covering a large area, usually bound in softcover. The Osher Map Library at the University of Southern Maine provides The American Way, an online exhibition of road maps.

A thin, soft, flexible sheepskin, usually dyed a dark color, used in bookbinding from the late 18th century as a substitute for morocco, which was more elegant but also more expensive. Click here to see a 19th-century example, courtesy of the University of North Texas Libraries.

A fictional narrative in which plot, setting, and theme are similar to Daniel Defoe's 1719 novel Robinson Crusoe. Typically, one or more protagonists are marooned on a secluded and uninhabited island, far from the comforts of civilization, and must improvise means of survival, usually under inhospitable conditions (example: The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss). Coined in 1731 by German writer Johann Gottfried Schnabel, the term refers to a subgenre of survivalist fiction, but overlaps in some cases with science fiction (example: The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells). Synonymous with desert island story.

See: CHOICE Reviews on Cards.

A style of bookbinding popular in France in the 19th century featuring a panel framed by elegantly curved, often foliate shapes, usually tooled in gold or silver, with or without a centerpiece. To see examples, try a search on the keyword "rocaille" in the British Library's Database of Bookbindings.

rock drawing
In cartography, the stylized rendering of rock faces for terrain too steep to be shown by other methods of representing relief. Click here to see an example by the Swiss cartographer Eduard Imhof and here to see the technique used on series of spectacular maps of the Alps.

rogue site
A Web site that attracts visitors by the deliberate selection of a domain name similar to that of some other popular site, hijacks the visitor's browser, installs unwanted programs or pop-ups on the user's computer, invades the user's privacy, or otherwise engages in surreptitious, malicious, or criminal activities.

See: return on investment.

role indicator
In indexing, a code used to indicate the syntactic relationship between two or more index terms (subject headings or descriptors) assigned to a document to facilitate retrieval by subject (adapted from the ASIS Thesaurus of Information Science and Librarianship, Information Today, 1998).

Latin: rotulus. A manuscript written on a length of papyrus, parchment, or vellum, assembled from sheets (kollemata) pasted edge-to-edge with the overlapped sheet to the left to prevent the pen from catching on the join (kollesis). The oldest surviving examples are from ancient Egypt on papyrus. Writing was usually on the inside surface only--the side with the fibers running horizontally--with details of author, title, and production given in the colophon, incipit, and explicit. The reader unrolled the manuscript from left to right, exposing about four columns of text at a time. A sheet of reverse fiber direction, called the protokollon, began the roll, and a long wooden rod (the umbilicus) was sometimes attached to the opposite end to facilitate rerolling. In Antiquity, rolls were stored horizontally on a shelf or vertically in a box or cylindrical receptacle called a capsa, often with the title of the work written on a small label called a syllabus attached to one edge.

As a format, the roll had the advantage of not requiring binding to keep the text in order, but the fact that it had to be rewound by the reader made specific reference to a portion of text cumbersome, and it could become tangled if dropped. The roll was superseded by the codex in about the 3rd century A.D. but continued to be used during the Middle Ages for specialized purposes (genealogies, chronicles, Exchequer Rolls, etc.), read from top to bottom (see the Edward IV Roll courtesy of Leaves of Gold). Synonymous with volumen. Compare with scroll. See also: opisthograph.

Also refers to a list of names, especially the members of an organization, assembly, or official body, used to "call the roll" in a roll-call vote or to record attendance (see this example, courtesy of the Delaware Public Archives).

Also, a continuous length of motion picture film wound on a reel or core for projection, transport, or storage, usually with strips of leader attached to the head and tail to facilitate threading the projector (see this example). Film can be wound head out or tail out.

See: read-only memory.

The formal Latin alphabet consisting of minuscule (lowercase) and majuscule (uppercase) letters, as distinct from gothic or black letter. Minuscules were adapted from the noncursive book hand used in medieval Europe; majuscules evolved from the capitals used in the inscriptions carved on tombs and other stone monuments by the ancient Romans. Click here to see roman book script used in an 18th-century pontifical (Schøyen Collection, MS 1674). See also: Cyrillic.

In typography, a typeface in which the characters are not slanted, as in italic, but stand straight up. Also used as a generic term for all typefaces with serifs, as opposed to those that are sans-serif. Click here to see an early use of roman type (Koninklijke Bibliotheek) and here to see a modern example.

roman à clef
French for "novel with a key." A form of novel in which real people or institutions are given fictitious names but depicted in such a way that well-informed readers can penetrate the disguise. Such works are often satirical, as in Robert Penn Warren's thinly veiled characterization of the Louisiana demagogue Huey Long in All the King's Men. Click here to see a list of examples in Wikipedia. Synonymous with livre à clef. Compare with historical fiction.

roman à these
French for "novel with a thesis." A form of novel in which the author presents a moral dilemma or social problem in order to advance a specific point of view or programmatic solution, instead of leaving the resolution to the reader (example: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck). Synonymous with problem novel and protest novel. See also: thesis play.

A narrative in which the primary themes are passionate love and adventure, usually depicted in an exotic rather than realistic setting, involving characters that are larger-than-life stereotypes. The origins of romance as a literary form can be traced to the gothic novel of the 18th century and to the earlier tradition of medieval chivalry. In English literature, Samuel Richardson's Pamela, or, Virtue Rewarded (1740) is considered a seminal work. Nineteenth-century romanticism revived the romance in verse form and also in the visual arts. Most contemporary romance is written to appeal to female readers. In Genreflecting: A Guide to Reading Interests in Genre Fiction (Libraries Unlimited, 2000), Diana Tixier Herald notes that, "In these novels, emotional experiences might be tinged with religious spirituality or aimed at sexual fulfillment, but the desired conclusion is always marriage." Subgenres include historical romance, romantic suspense, and supernatural romance. Pulp romance is often published in series. Click here to connect to the The Romance Reader, a Web site devoted to romance fiction.

Also refers to a genre of vernacular literature that developed in France during the 12th and 13th centuries, consisting of narrative tales describing the chivalric adventures of noble men and women, composed in verse and later in prose. Although often based on historical themes (Morte D'Arthur, Havelock the Dane, etc.), the stories were fictional, often combining allegory and satire with moral tales of courtly love. Click here to view illuminations in an early 15th-century copy of Roman de la Rose by Jean de Meun (Getty Museum, MS Ludwig XV 7). Compare with chanson de geste.

Manuscripts produced throughout Europe during the 11th and 12th centuries, mostly ecclesiastical texts, but also some scholarly and technical works, such as bestiaries and herbals. The term was originally applied in the 19th century to 11th- and 12th-century European architecture influenced by principles of construction developed in ancient Rome. In Understanding Illuminated Manuscripts (Getty Museum/British Library, 1994), Michelle P. Brown notes that in manuscript illumination, Romanesque style is a synthesis of ancient Roman, Insular, Byzantine, and Islamic elements. The Shaftesbury Psalter (British Library, Lansdowne 383) and Stammheim Missal (Getty Museum, MS 64) are examples of this style.

A French term for a form of novel in which the narrative covers the fortunes of an entire family, sometimes over several generations (examples: Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann, The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy, and One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez).

Conversion of words, names, titles, or text from nonroman script into the letters of the roman alphabet. Click here to connect to the ALA-LC Romanization Tables, containing 54 transliteration tables for over 150 languages and dialects written in nonroman scripts, published by the Cataloging Distribution Service of the Library of Congress. See also: pinyin.

roman numeral
A system of numerals developed by the ancient Romans, used throughout Europe prior to the introduction of arabic numerals in the 11th century. Capital letters of the Latin alphabet are used to indicate number, either alone (I = 1, V = 5, X = 10, L = 50, C = 100, D = 500, and M = 1,000) or in combination, according to established conventions (IV = 4, VI = 6, IX = 9, XI = 11, etc.). In printing, roman numerals are used for chapter headings, plates, lists, dates, and in lowercase, to paginate the front matter of books. Click here to learn more about roman numerals in Wikipedia, and here to use an Arabic-Roman Numerals Converter.

See: stem.

Rosetta Stone
A smooth slab of dark granite, approximately 2.5 feet wide and 3.75 feet high, bearing the same inscription, a decree honoring Ptolemy V Epiphanes, written in 196 B.C. in two languages: Greek and Egyptian. The Egyptian version of the text is carved in hieroglyphs and in the demotic cursive script. Discovered in Egypt in 1799 by a party of French soldiers under the command of Napoleon Bonaparte, the stone was subsequently used by the British physicist Thomas Young and the French Egyptologist Jean-François Champollion to decipher the meaning of Egyptian hieroglyphic writing. It is currently in the custodianship of The British Museum in London. Click here to see an image of the Rosetta Stone inscription and here to learn more about the stone, courtesy of the British Museum.

A list of military personnel, often organized by group, including name, regular assignment, period of duty, and other pertinent information for each individual (click here to see a example from the American Revolutionary War, courtesy of the Delaware Public Archives). In a more general sense, any list or roll, usually of members of an organization. Rosters can be of considerable interest to historians and genealogists.

rotated display
An alphabetically arranged display of all the significant words contained in the descriptors listed in a thesaurus of indexing terms, in which each word is treated as a filing unit. Descriptors are repeated in the alphabetic sequence under each of their significant words, single-word descriptors appearing only once. Word order within terms is not altered. The following example is from the "Rotated Descriptor Display" in the Thesaurus of ERIC Descriptors. See also: permuted index.

Adult Literacy
Child Parent Literacy Use Family Literacy
Literacy Classes (1966 1980) Use Literacy Education
Computer Literacy
Cultural Literacy
Early Literacy Use Emergent Literacy
Literacy Education
Emergent Literacy
Family Literacy

rotated index
See: permuted index.

rotating display
A highly compact bookcase with shelves on four faces, mounted on a cylindrical spindle that allows it to be turned by the person browsing its contents, used in libraries for displaying paperbacks and media items (videocassettes, CDs, etc.). Synonymous with rotor display and revolving case.

A method of scheduling shifts at a library service point in which a group of librarians or other staff members take turns, usually in predetermined sequence. Evening and weekend reference desk hours are often scheduled in this manner to distribute workload equitably.

A method of intaglio printing, generally used at high speed for long press runs, in which the image from a photogravure plate is transferred to a cylinder in a rotary press. Also refers to the printed material (text and picture) produced by the method and to the use of photography in producing the plates. Click here to see newspaper examples of rotogravure, courtesy of the American Memory Project at the Library of Congress. The European Rotogravure Association provides information about the history of the process.

See: roll.

A type of gothic script developed in Italy and Spain during the 15th century. Its broad, round letterforms retain some of the features of the earlier Carolingian minuscule. Widely used by scribes for copying theological, legal, and scholastic texts, its use eventually spread north of the Alps. After the invention of printing from movable type in the mid-15th century, it was adapted for use in typefaces. Click here to view rotunda book hand in a 15th-century Italian psalter (Cary Collection, Rochester Institute).

Also refers to a circular or semicircular building, hall, or room, often with a domed ceiling. Some library buildings include a rotunda (see this example).

Calfskin given a suede-like nap, instead of the usual polished surface, used in binding from the 17th century on. Synonymous with reversed calf.

rough draft
The first version of a written document or piece of writing, which the author intends to substantially revise before it is finalized.

rough edges
A generic term used in bookbinding to refer to the irregular deckle edges of paper left uncut by the binder in some editions, more difficult to clean than cut edges on books exposed to dust.

A decorative panel or plate of circular or oval shape. The decorative borders of medieval manuscripts sometimes contain figures, scenes, or ornamentation enclosed in plain or embellished circular or oval frames. Click here to see roundels used in a historiated initial (Bodleian Library, MS Lat.liturg.d.42), here to see them used in a full-page illumination in a 13th-century Gallican psalter (Leaves of Gold), and here to see an architectural border treatment in the 16th-century Spinola Hours (Getty Museum, MS Ludwig IX 18). In some illuminated manuscripts, roundels are used to depict bas-de-page scenes (click here and here to see examples) or for small portraits (see these examples) or small miniatures (see this example). Compare with medallion.

In bookbinding, a procedure performed after first gluing, before the lining is applied to the back, in which the binding edge of the sewn sections is hammered or otherwise physically manipulated to give the spine a convex shape in preparation for backing (click here to see the process illustrated). Used in hand-binding since the 16th century, the procedure gives the book a concave fore-edge, diminishes swell, and prevents the binding edge from falling forward with extended use or from the force of gravity as the volume stands upright on the shelf. Compare with flat back.

round table
In modern usage, a group established to discuss on an ongoing basis a range of topics and/or issues of concern to its members, usually within the context of a larger organization. The original "Round Table" preserved at Winchester, England, is believed to have been the center around which the King Arthur of medieval legend met with his knights, its shape intended to prevent quarrels over precedence.

Within the American Library Association (ALA), each of the following permanent round tables has its own membership:

Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT)
Exhibits Round Table (ERT)
Federal and Armed Forces Libraries Round Table (FAFLRT)
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Round Table (GLBTRT)
Government Documents Round Table (GODORT)
Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT)
International Relations Round Table (IRRT)
Learning Round Table (LearnRT)
Library History Round Table (LHRT
Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT)
Library Research Round Table (LRRT)
Library Support Staff Interests Round Table (LSSIRT)
Map and Geospatial Information Round Table (MAGIRT)
New Members Round Table (NMRT)
Staff Organizations Round Table (SORT)
Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT)
Video Round Table (VRT)

A hardware device designed to direct the tiny packets of digital data comprising an electronic message from one node on a computer network to another by the most efficient pathway. Routers also perform other functions in the control of network traffic.

A component of a computer program written to execute a given operation or function under specific conditions, for example, an error routine. Also refers to an operation or procedure that, if performed regularly in the same manner, increases efficiency.

The routine circulation of new publications, such as current issues of LIS journals, to a list of library staff in accordance with their preferences, to allow them to keep abreast of recent developments in their field(s) of interest and specialization. In special libraries, new publications may be circulated to a list of personnel within the host organization based on their interests, usually by means of a routing slip listing the names of the individuals who wish to see each issue of a title. When finished, each person crosses his or her name off the list and sends the item to another person on the list. When all the names have been crossed off, the item is usually returned to the serials desk or acquisitions librarian to be processing for general circulation. Also spelled routeing.

routing slip
A list attached to the front cover of a new document or periodical issue, giving the names of the people within a department or organization who would like to receive it. Each person crosses his or her name off the list when finished, then sends the item to another on the list. After the last person has seen the item, it is returned to the person responsible for processing, filing, or disposing of it.

In the delivery of reference services, the practice of discreetly walking about the reference area of a library in search of users who need assistance, as opposed to remaining seated at the reference desk, waiting for patrons to approach with their questions. Experienced reference librarians learn to tell by body language and other nonverbal cues when a user is experiencing difficulty. They may initiate a reference interview by politely asking if the person is finding the information needed. In large libraries, when two librarians are scheduled for reference duty at the same time, one may rove while the other remains at the desk. Some libraries are equipping reference librarians with portable PCs to take the transaction to the patron.

royal binding
A binding with the coat of arms of a sovereign, or some other symbol of royal lineage, tooled or stamped on one or both sides of the cover, a form of decoration popular in Europe through the end of the 19th century, not necessarily signifying ownership. Click here to see a Victorian example (Special Collections, Glasgow University Library, BD4-f.19). To see other examples, try a search on the keyword "royal" in the British Library's Database of Bookbindings. Compare with armorial binding.

royal copy
A book or manuscript made for a sovereign (king, queen, emperor, pharaoh, sultan, shah, tsar, etc.), usually exhibiting workmanship of the finest quality and often bearing a coat of arms or other insignia. Royal copies are considered national treasures. Click here to see a page from an 15th-century manuscript copy of the allegory The Language of the Birds, made for Sultan Husain Baiqara of Iran (Metropolitan Museum of Art). See also: royal binding.

A term used in the book trade for the regular payments made by a publisher to the author or creator of a work for copies sold, usually a percentage of the published price (10-15 percent) but sometimes a percentage of the wholesale price or of the publisher's total receipts (The Bookman's Glossary, Bowker, 1983). The royalty paid on reprints, book club editions, scholarly publications, and copies exported or sold by mail order is normally lower, and no royalty is paid on review copies or remainders. Negotiated in advance by the parties or their agents, royalty and advance on royalty are stipulated in the book contract. Most publishers have an established policy regarding royalty percentage, but in the case of books with very high sales potential, a higher percentage may be offered as an inducement to sign. In the case of electronic resources, the concept of royalty has been extended to include any portion of the fee paid under a license to use the product. Compare with buy-out. See also: mechanical royalty and sliding royalty.

royalty split
In book publishing, the division of a royalty between multiple authors or between the author and illustrator. In music publishing, the recording company normally pays the royalty to the publisher and the split is then made between composer and publisher, according to the terms of the publishing agreement.

An abbreviation of revolutions per minute, a unit of measurement indicating the playing speed of a phonograph record. In the early years of the recording industry, speeds varied from label to label, but were eventually standardized at 78 rpm for 10-inch discs, and later at 45 rpm for 7-inch discs (singles) and 33 1/3 rpm for 12-inch discs (LPs). In library cataloging, rpm is indicated in the physical description (field 300) in the MARC record.

R.R. Bowker
See: Bowker.

See: repetitive stress injury.

Originally, an abbreviation of RDF Site Summary, renamed Rich Site Summary, and later redubbed Really Simple Syndication. A method of Web syndication, originally developed at Netscape, which uses XML file formats to publish frequently updated online works, such as blog entries, news headlines, and audio and video clips, in standardized format (see this example). An RSS document (called a feed or web feed) includes full or summarized text with limited metadata (usually publication date and author). The user subscribes to a feed by entering its URL into an RSS reader or by clicking a feed icon in a Web browser to initiate the subscription process. The RSS reader automatically checks the user's subscribed feeds on a regular basis, downloads any updates, aggregates them, and provides a user interface, enabling the subscriber to monitor and read new feeds at will without visiting multiple Web sites. RSS readers are available for different platforms, or the user can select a Web-based reader. Click here to learn more about RSS.

RT (or R)
See: related term and running title.

The condition of a book that has a visibly chafed binding but is otherwise undamaged. Synonymous with barked. Compare with scuffed.

rubber stamp
A small block of wood or metal covered on one side with a thin layer of rubber into which letters, numbers, and/or a design have been cut in relief. When inked and pressed against a smooth, clean surface, the block leaves a mark, used in libraries to stamp ownership marks on books and other materials and to stamp the due date on items at the time they are checked out. Some models are self-inking.

An impression made by moving charcoal, graphite, chalk, crayon, or a similar substance back and forth across a sheet of paper placed over a surface, portions of which are in raised relief. Click here to see temple rubbings from East Asia, courtesy of SEALG, and here to see East Asian rubbings in the Fine Arts Library at Harvard College.

From the Latin rubrica, meaning "red." An initial letter, word, phrase, title, or instruction written in red ink and/or decorative lettering, in contrast to the text written or printed in black. Used in medieval manuscripts and early printed books for descriptive headings and to mark divisions in the text, the practice has been traced to late Antiquity and was common from the 5th century on. See this example in a late 15th-century Italian manuscript (British Library, Yates Thompson 7). Distinctive headings served an important function in books produced before the 9th century when the text was written in scriptio continuo without word division or punctuation.

The phrase "red letter day" refers to the practice of recording major feast days in red in the calendar sections of liturgical books and Books of Hours. The ink was made from red lead or vermilion, substances readily available in Europe during the Middle Ages. Eventually the term included headings written in other colors (blue, green, etc.). Rubrication was normally done by a scribe known as a rubrisher or rubricator, in spaces left blank during the writing of the text. Click here to view rubrication in a 15th-century English sacramentary (Dartmouth College Library, MS 002100) and here to see a rubric in a book printed by Johann Fust and Peter Schöffer in 1470 (Cary Collection, Rochester Institute). Compare with illuminated initial.

In modern parlance, a heading or title, as of a chapter or section of a book or periodical, especially one designating a statute or part of a legal code, originally written or printed in red ink or distinguished in some other way from the text. In liturgical books, a direction for the conduct of services, usually written or printed in red.

From the Latin rubrica, meaning "red." In medieval manuscripts and early printed books, the writing of letters, headings, and instructions in red ink to distinguish them from the text (see these examples in a 13th-century German gradual, courtesy of the Morgan Library, MS M.711). Rubrics were inserted by the rubrisher in spaces left blank by the scribe when the text was written. Eventually the term was applied to letters, words, and headings written in any color (blue, green, purple, etc.) other than the black or dark brown ink used for the text. Compare these examples in a 15th-century German missal with this 20th-century example (Cary Collection, Rochester Institute).

The term also refers to a style of Celtic manuscript decoration in which initial letters and other motifs are surrounded by a multitude of tiny, evenly spaced red dots, arranged in rows and other patterns. Also called dotting. Click here to extensive use of the technique on an incipit page from the Lindisfarne Gospels.

A thin metal strip of type-height used to print continuous lines, or lines of dots or pattern, as in a plain or decorative border around a title page. Thickness of rule (measured in points) determines thickness of line. A rule may be thicker at the center with tapered ends (see french dash). Rule-borders on bindings can be in blind or gilt. Click here to see both methods used on the same cover (Glasgow University Library). See also: dash, fillet, and hyphen.

Also refers to a regulation or principle governing acceptable conduct, usually within a specific social, cultural, or organizational context. Most libraries have written rules concerning computer use and unacceptable behavior, usually posted near the circulation desk or reference desk and sometimes at the library's Web site.

In library cataloging, a standard procedure, usually governed by a catalog code, such as the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (AACR) or the ALA Filing Rules. See also: rule interpretation.

rule interpretation (RI)
A formal explanation, clarification, or expansion of existing cataloging rules, usually resulting from a case that raises questions concerning the applicability of established policy and/or procedure. In the United States, the Library of Congress issues rule interpretations (LCRI) for AACR2, formulated as needed by the Cataloging Policy & Support Office, to reflect internal LC policy decisions. Distributed by the Cataloging Distribution Service, LCRI are followed by other libraries for the sake of consistency.

rule of application
The instruction in Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) to classify works about the application of one subject to a second subject, or the influence of one subject on another, under the second of the two, for example, the classification of a monograph on the literary influence of Ovid on Chaucer with works about Chaucer.

rule of three
The instruction in Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) to classify works in which equal treatment is given to three or more subjects (all subdivisions of a broader subject) under the first higher class number encompassing them all. See also: first-of-two rule.

Also, in the days when most libraries used the card catalog, an effort was made by catalogers to assign no more than three subject headings per item to limit growth in physical size of the catalog. When libraries began converting catalog cards to machine-readable records, the number of access points per item ceased to be an issue because the online catalog occupies no physical space.

rule of zero
In Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), when two or more class numbers are found to be equally suitable for a work, the cataloger is instructed to avoid subdivisions beginning with zero if there is a choice between 0 and 1-9 in the same position in the notation and to avoid subdivisions beginning with 00 when there is a choice between 00 and 0.

Vertical and horizontal lines carefully drawn on the blank sheets of a medieval manuscript to aid the scribe and illuminator in copying and decorating the text. A rectangular frame was first drawn around the page to delimit the text area, with two vertical lines down the center in manuscripts written in two columns, establishing the margin between them. Tiny holes pricked through the entire thickness of a gathering along the edges of the bifolia ensured that the horizontal lines ruled within the frames were identical on every page.

Prior to the 11th century, ruling was usually done by scoring the surface of the parchment or vellum with a stylus or metal implement. However, scoring creates a small furrow that tends to collect ink or paint, so writing was between the lines, not on them. During the 11th and 12th centuries, plummet was widely used to rule manuscripts, and from the late 13th century on, the lines were often drawn in pale red or brown ink. Ruling was so much a part of the overall design that in early printed books, lines were sometimes hand-drawn around the text and between the lines of type to duplicate the appearance of a manuscript. Ruling can be seen on this unwritten page of the 15th-century Burnet Psalter (University of Aberdeen Library, AUL MS 25) and on the written pages of this 16th-century breviary (Dartmouth College Library, MS 002271). To learn more about ruling in medieval manuscript production see the Medieval Manuscript Manual. See also: mis-en-page.

A slang expression used by London booksellers of the 18th century for a miscellaneous assortment of unsalable books, probably derived from the telltale odor imparted by the previous contents of the wooden barrels used for storing them.

In printing, the number of impressions taken from a plate or setting of type at one time. A completed job is said to have been run-off. See also: overrun and underrun.

In printing, a reduction in the line width of a column of type, on either the left- or right-hand side, to accommodate an illustration or note set into the text. Synonymous with set-around.

From the Anglo-Saxon run, meaning "secret" or "mystery." A letter of the earliest Scandinavian and Anglo-Saxon alphabet (called Futhark) consisting of 24 letters in three families of eight, used from about A.D. 200 to 750. The angular letterforms were probably derived from characters carved on metal, wood, or stone by the ancient Teutonic peoples of northern Europe. Michelle Brown notes in The British Library Guide to Writing and Scripts (University of Toronto Press, 1998) that in Old English several runic characters were added to the Roman alphabet. The use of runes died out after the 13th century. Click here to see a runic calendar (Cornell University Library) and here to learn more about the runic alphabet in Wikipedia.

In a more general sense, an aphorism, riddle, or saying believed to have mystical meaning or magical powers.

A sequence of numbers or letters printed at regular intervals down one or both side margins in a book to indicate the position of any line on a page. Used in long poems, plays, and text in a foreign language to enable the reader to reference a specific line (or lines) by page number.

running foot
The line of type printed below the text at the bottom of a page in a book or periodical, uniform in style and content, usually giving the same information as a running head. Synonymous with footline. See also: footer.

running head
The line of type printed above the text at the top of a page. In a book, it usually gives the title of the work on the verso and the chapter title on the recto. In periodicals, the running head gives the name of the publication, issue date, and page number and may also include the volume number and issue number. Some books and periodicals are printed without running heads. Synonymous with headline and page head.

running time
The duration of a motion picture, including the credits but not any trailer(s) or supplemental material. In library cataloging, running time is given under extent of item in the physical description area of the bibliographic record. Compare with playing time.

running title
The title or an abbreviated title of a book, or section of a book, repeated in uniform style at the head or foot of each page or verso, usually the same as the drop-down title. Also known as a running head. Click here to the see the running title "Genesis" written at the head of a page in a 14th-century French Bible historiale (Getty Museum, MS 1) and here to see examples set in a gothic font in a copy of Argonautica printed by Josse Bade in Paris in 1519 (Special Collections, Glasgow University Library, MS Hunterian Bq.2.11).

run-on chapter
A chapter that does not begin on a new page but is set immediately following the end of the text of the preceding chapter, usually to minimize the amount of paper required to print the work. In quality printing, it is standard practice to begin a new chapter on the recto of the leaf following the last page of the preceding chapter.

run-over symbol
In medieval manuscripts, a decorative device indicating to the reader that the text of a line has been carried over to occupy the remainder of the line above or below, a space that otherwise would have remained blank (see this example, courtesy of the British Library, Harley 228). According to the British Library's Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts, run-over symbols can be abstract, foliate, zoomorphic, or anthropomorphic, and they serve both decorative and space-saving purposes, especially in verse forms such as the Psalms. Synonymous with run-over mark.

rural library
A library or library system that serves a population living primarily on farms and ranches, and in remote communities, rather than in a town or city (see this example). Rural libraries typically provide outreach services such as bookmobiles and books-by-mail to bring library resources and services to users. See also: Association for Rural and Small Libraries.

See: Reference and User Services Association.

In motion picture production, unedited image and sound positive prints made from camera negatives of a day's shooting to be viewed by the director, producer, cinematographer, editor, etc., for quality control before the next day's shooting begins. The term is derived from the speed with which laboratory processing must be accomplished. As a general rule, a set is not struck (torn down) until the rushes have been approved. Synonymous with dailies.

rush order
A request made by a library to a publisher, jobber, or dealer that a specific title be supplied as quickly as possible, usually because it is needed by a professor for course reserves, to meet heavy demand, or to satisfy a patron who has requested it. A service charge is usually added for a rush order. Compare with special order. See also: rush processing.

rush processing
In acquisitions, an item sent to cataloging to be processed as soon as it is received, usually a rush order or an item for which a patron is waiting.

Calfskin tanned and treated with birch bark oil to give it a pleasant aroma that supposedly acts as an insect repellent. Popular in England as a binding material from about 1780 to 1830, russia calf was often dyed red with brazilwood and scored in a crisscross pattern of diagonal lines called dicing. The process was abandoned because it has a drying effect that causes the covers to eventually disintegrate. To see examples, try a search on the keyword "russia" in the British Library's Database of Bookbindings.

rustic capital
Calligraphic capital letters used as a book hand by scribes from the 1st to the 6th century, in contrast to the wide, heavy square capitals adapted from Roman inscriptions for use in formal documents. Vertical strokes were thinned by holding the pen at an oblique angle and previously rounded letterforms condensed to one-half the width of square capitals, allowing more text to fit on a page, a distinct advantage when writing material (parchment and vellum) was costly and in limited supply. Click here to view a page from Virgil's Georgics and Bucolics written in rustic capitals (Vatican Library). Latin: capitalis rustica. Compare with uncial.

Also refers to a capital letter with a design painted or engraved on its face in the form of vines and leaves, or the textured bark of a tree. Click here to see examples in the borders of an illumination and a text page in an early 16th-century Flemish Book of Hours (Syracuse University Library). Rustic initial letters abound in the Prayer Book of Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg (Getty Museum, MS Ludwig IX 19) and the Spinola Hours (Ludwig IX 18) of the same century. Similar examples can be seen in the 16th-century Da Costa Hours (Morgan Library, MS M.399). Compare with foliate initial.

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