[Archivesspace_Users_Group] Component Unique Identifiers questions

Linda Hocking lhocking at litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org
Thu Sep 20 09:41:12 EDT 2018

Lydia & Maggie,

I'm glad you brought this up! I am using the CUI to identify the Series, subseries, or item number. We are currently not using (and may decide not to use) the container management system. Every time I print a finding aid for someone (our users are not all computer savvy) I have to write those numbers in or manually count them. In the public interface, I can see the level of the item or folder I'm looking at, but not where it belongs in the overall hierarchy (so I can see "Item 1" but not that it's part of Series 2, Folder 7). It's incredibly time consuming to have to go back to the staff interface to figure out where something someone wants to see is. I get that the container management system might rectify this problem to some extent, but our intellectual description almost always matches physical location so it seems like a heck of a lot of work to implement that for little reward, especially since the information is in the system- there's just no good way to see it. Thanks again.


Linda Hocking, CA

Curator of Library & Archives

Litchfield Historical Society

P.O. Box 385

Litchfield, CT 06759


lhocking at litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org


From: archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org <archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org> on behalf of Tang, Lydia <ltang5 at lib.msu.edu>
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2018 9:24 AM
To: Archivesspace Users Group
Subject: Re: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Component Unique Identifiers questions

Hi Maggie,
Thanks for following up with my questions, I'm glad we're having this discussion because I think we could create a JIRA ticket about this issue if we (as the membership) would like to see this area potentially altered/clarified.
I personally would support having the CUI default to a public audience and have it appear before the <unittitle>, not be visually associated with a top container.  However, where would it be viewed instead in the staff interface?
I would prefer if the CUI was a free-text field which *wouldn't* autopopulate the level of description because I can think of other formats of a CUI - such as if someone wants to record the identifiers that the creator used for their working filing system or recording the corresponding file id for digitized content derived from the original format.  Or, are people recording this sort of information in a note field instead?  How would others feel about this?
On 9/19/18, 6:31 PM, "archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org on behalf of Hughes, Margaret" <archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org on behalf of mhughes at library.ucla.edu> wrote:

    Confusion over the CUI field came up recently for us, as well, and we're wondering how we should move forward using it.

    Regarding the first question: I'm wondering if other institutions are using the CUI to record information like "Series I" or "Subseries 8.4"? And if so, are you happy with how the CUI exports in the EAD? As far as I understand, the CUI field exports in EAD as <unitid> which comes after the title <unittitle>. Maybe this is specific to our practice, and it's something that could also be fixed with a stylesheet, but it seems like it would make more sense for the <unitid> to precede the <unittitle>, if it is indeed intended for information like "Series I" or "Subseries 8.4". Then the result in the EAD would likely display as "Series 1 Correspondence". If institutions are not using the CUI to record "Series 1", are you including that in the title field? Or not noting series and subseries numbers at all?

    Relating to the second question, as you said the top container field pulls and displays both the Level of Description (if it is "series") and the information in the CUI, so it results in top containers like “Series Series X". Is this the intended behavior? My inclination is that displaying this information in the top container does not make sense and is not helpful, especially in cases where containers belong to multiple series. I tested it with adding a box to four different series and it lists all four in the top container (see attached screenshot). Are others experiencing this and accepting it/ignoring it?

    Any help is much appreciated!


    -----Original Message-----
    From: archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org [mailto:archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org] On Behalf Of Tang, Lydia
    Sent: Monday, September 17, 2018 10:07 AM
    To: Archivesspace Users Group <archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org>
    Subject: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Component Unique Identifiers questions

    Hi all,
    I’m passing along a question for a friend and then have a set of slightly related questions of my own:

      1.  I am trying to find a way to have a series identifier code appear on the finding aid.  The Component Unique Identifier does not appear to print, and the only examples I have come across have just added Series 1 to the beginning of the series name as in:
    Series 1. Athletic Council records, 1903-1975.  Does anyone use the Series code on your finding aid, and if so, where do you add it?
      2.  My question: I have a legacy imported collection which uses the Series info in the CUI.  It displays as “Series Series X” in the top container field.  Sorry if I’m stating the obvious, but this label pulls the first “series” from the level of description – only if it is at a series level (I tried changing it to subseries and other smaller levels) and the rest is free text from the CUI.  When there are materials from more than one series are shared in a Top Container, it lists off possibly up to two series (it didn’t seem like it listed off 3 or more, but I might have been confusing myself).  I am not sure that Staff Interface recommendations by SIEWG touched on the CUI, so I wanted to ask:
         *   Would it be helpful to have a publish function for the CUI?  Just trying to imagine it, it would be an established default setting with a check box to manually change.
         *   Is displaying the information in the Top Container the most efficient/logical place - especially in cases of extensive intellectual arrangement of items belonging to multiple series sharing a container?  There is a JIRA relating to CUI display: https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__archivesspace.atlassian.net_browse_ANW-2D279&d=DwIGaQ&c=nE__W8dFE-shTxStwXtp0A&r=lG1-HSCEGsZJf-_mV6BDLh4PvkC3fOv47rKbM_dbh1g&m=cxdroSAnMNN8v-ziOfa-FfAKri3ejziRJdFf2j2n25E&s=eIJZHSrMBRwzDOHE6Gr1BPXa2gRqmtrrY_xI0FAb0co&e=  Does this resonate with the broader membership (you all)?
         *   Is deriving a portion of the label from the level of description for the CUI universally helpful?  How about in cases of electronic file names or labeling physical objects with the corresponding scanned object identifier?  Alternatively, would enabling this action for smaller levels of description (sub-series, file, item, etc), be helpful?
    I’m just trying to wrap my head around it, so any feedback/clarifications are greatly appreciated!
    Dr. Lydia Tang, CA, DAS, DMA, MLIS
    Special Collections Archivist-Librarian
    Philosophy, Aesthetics, and Ethics Bibliographer Michigan State University Libraries
    366 W. Circle Drive (DB 6)
    East Lansing, MI 48824-1048
    Email: ltang5 at msu.edu
    Phone: 517-884-8984

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