What is Z39.50?
Z39.50 is an American national standard for information retrieval. It is formally known as ANSI/NISO Z39.50-1995 - Information Retrieval (Z39.50): Application Service Definition and Protocol Specification. This document specifies a set of rules and procedures for the behaviour of two systems communicating for the purposes of database searching and information retrieval. As a network application standard, Z39.50 is an open standard that enables communication between systems that run on different hardware and use different software.
The Z39.50 standard was developed to overcome the problems associated with multiple database searching such as having to know the unique menus, command language, and search procedures of each system accessed. Z39.50 simplifies the search process by making it possible for a searcher to use the familiar user interface of the local system to search both the local library catalogue as well as any remote database system that support the standard.
from "An Overview of the Z39.50 Information Retrieval Standard" by Fay Turner, National Library of Canada
For more information about the Z39.50 standard, please see the Z39.50 site maintained by the Library of Congress.
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Search Field/Type Use Position anywhere in the record 1016 3 Personal Name 1 3 Author 1003 3 Author-name personal 1004 3 Title 4 1 Publisher:Date 31 3 Subject 21 3 ISBN 7 1 ISSN 8 1 OCLC Number 1211 3 Local number (tag 001) 1 3 Database name 01UPENN_INST