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Book Issues > How to Find Initials Without Periods!

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message 1: by Vicky (last edited Mar 22, 2013 08:09AM) (new)

Vicky (librovert) | 2459 comments I know other librarians are going to be just as excited about this as I am, so I figured I'd share the wealth. ;P

I was fixing up single-letter authors and realized that if you click the similar names link on a single letter, it returns a list of authors with that that initial that are not properly formatted with periods!

I made a spreadsheet list with all the similar name links (hopefully no one merges any of the empty profiles in the mean time). Some of them only have a few but some of them seem never ending. I've been cleaning up A for a couple days and it still returns the max of 500 names.

Note that I've stumbled across several names that should not be initials but are remnants of issues with accented letters. EX: Several "Andre A LastName" were actually "Andreá LastName" - so please make sure to double check before you edit!

So, if anyone is looking for something to do... :)


message 2: by Emy (new)

Emy (emypt) | 5029 comments Ooooh, and just in time for the Easter holidays!! :D


message 3: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
Moved to Book Issues and marked as important.

Have fun!


message 4: by Renske (new)

Renske | 10805 comments Good idea.

I only think I have found a limitation of this approach. It seems to me that if you use similar names link for a single "name" it gives only results with that "name" repeated. So the page for 'J' gives only names with at least two J's.
I got this before with the similar names link for the author John, this page http://www.goodreads.com/author/simil... As far as I see there are only names with twice or more John.
If this is true, it limits the authors we can find in this way.


message 5: by Vicky (new)

Vicky (librovert) | 2459 comments Now that I'm looking closer, it seems that's likely, though I think it's not the repetition that causes it. I looks like to classify as a "similar name" it has to start with the same letter.

So Similar Names to "John" would return "John Doe" and "John Brown" but not "Richard John."

There are at least 7,600 authors that can be found this way plus whatever overflow from the letters that overflow the 500 result page limit so it's a huge chunk.

Also, many books imported without punctuated initials have multiple authors. I've been editing all the authors of such a book when I find them, if everyone takes that approach we should be able to find another large chunk.


message 6: by Renske (new)

Renske | 10805 comments It is indeed an large amount of authors you have found in this way.


message 7: by vicki_girl (new)

vicki_girl | 2765 comments I just finished "O", if you want to update your spreadsheet.


message 8: by Jen (new)

Jen (reader44ever) | 182 comments What a fun project! I started working on V. I'm not sure how much I'll be able to get done per day, given my disabilities, but I'm contributing what I can. :-)


message 9: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 23739 comments I've made a big dent in T. Still plenty to go though ;)


message 10: by Catalina (new)

Catalina | 2065 comments Hi :)
I also did some M and i am unsure what to do with the the empty profiles; I thought I better ask instead of doing some mistakes :o
I guess in some cases i'll find the good profile and merge them(right?) but others really look unrecognizable...


message 11: by Emy (new)

Emy (emypt) | 5029 comments Also been working on T but keep getting sidetracked into other fixes :)

Taking a break to work on some Russian authors who seem to have lost their native profiles, again.


message 12: by Vicky (last edited Mar 30, 2013 04:23PM) (new)

Vicky (librovert) | 2459 comments Catalina-Laura wrote: "Hi :)
I also did some M and i am unsure what to do with the the empty profiles; I thought I better ask instead of doing some mistakes :o
I guess in some cases i'll find the good profile and merge t..."


If they're truly empty I've been merging them into whatever letter it is. So, in this case, I'd merge them into M.

BUT, please make sure the profile is completely empty before making that merge. Even if there are no books listed there may still be quotes, discussions or fans - in which case it needs to be merged with the appropriate correct author to keep all those things intact.


message 13: by Catalina (new)

Catalina | 2065 comments Alright! Thank you, Vicky! :)


message 14: by lafon حمزة (new)

lafon حمزة نوفل (lafon) | 3557 comments "F" is also finished.


message 15: by R.M. (new)

R.M. Green (rmgreen) | 4 comments I have a very simple request... Please add periods to the author's initials, as the book I am reading right now, Like Litter in the Wind, is actually this author's 5th book - all his other books (such as Manhood and The Moanin' After) are under L.M. Ross, but this latest book is listed under LM Ross. I wish I could have done this quick-fix, then I would not have had to bother you. As this author is a personal friend of mine, I am trying to get him to complete his profile here and have more interaction with readers as well. Thank you very much!

R.M. Green


❂ Murder by Death  (murderbydeath) Fixed.


message 17: by R.M. (new)

R.M. Green (rmgreen) | 4 comments WOW!! Thank you so much.... you are the best! :)


message 18: by Abigail (new)

Abigail (handmaiden) | 83 comments The letters A, C, H, I, R, S, and W are apparently also finished. Also, only super-librarians can look at the similar names list for K (because "K" is a Goodreads author).


message 19: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments While checking out how this works, I went to the spreadsheet and clicked on some.

For some that are Done, like B, there are more names listed. I corrected one, went back and refreshed the list and the name I corrected went off the list.

So, it seems that the spreadsheet should be kept and periodically checked? Maybe instead of DONE a date should be used?


message 20: by Susie (new)

Susie (dragonsusie) | 2472 comments Was just looking through the Ds and Devin D Thorpe needs to be done by a Super.


message 21: by Susie (new)

Susie (dragonsusie) | 2472 comments This one also: Danika D potts


message 22: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 23739 comments Devin D. Thorpe fixed, and Danika D Potts is an empty author profile that will be fixed by the programmers.


message 23: by Susie (new)

Susie (dragonsusie) | 2472 comments Hmmm, forgot I could do it manually at that moment, by moving the books a bit more manually by changing each one individually rather than changing the author profile! If they're empty, they'll be tidied up eventually.

Thanks! :)


message 24: by Kai (last edited Oct 06, 2013 10:58PM) (new)

Kai (bushido_dragon) | 6 comments I decided to start working on some of the remaining Ns, but I came across a rather messy first one. Since I am new to being a Goodreads librarian, I want to make sure I'm doing this correctly. The author in question is Russian and appears to have several different profiles depending on how his name is transliterated. He also has a son by the same name who writes on similar subjects (the son's profile is differentiated by a Jr.). According to the LOC name authority file, the main form of the name is N. N. Bogoliubov, which is this profile:
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
Other profiles for him are (found by searching the other spellings found in the LOC file):
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
There also are these two profiles, which I believe are his, but I am not absolutely certain they're not his son's:
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
Since none of these profiles appear to have any adds/quotes/etc., will I just change the name in the ones I want to update to N. N. Bogoliubov in order to merge them?

In case anyone goes to look this up themselves, there also two profiles for N. (or N.N.) Bogolyubov (links are below). Given that the only books on these profiles are about the history of ships, I am assuming this is a different person. I looked through the LOC authorities, but I couldn't seem to find a record for this author. In a case like this, how do we decide which form of the name to use?
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show...

If someone lets me know if this is correct, I can go ahead and make the changes, I just didn't want to mess something up with this complicated a set of records.


message 25: by Paw3pals (last edited Oct 07, 2013 04:40AM) (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments I believe there are 2 accepted ways. Leave the names as the covers show (where there are covers) and reference (or put links) to the other names in the author profiles. Another way is to put everything under the main profile and list the other names used in the profile. But you should probably wait for a more experienced librarian to chime in, or a super.

And I would put something like the below (from Wikipedia - there is also a picture that can be used for the profile. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikolay_...) in the main profile:

Nikolay Nikolayevich Bogolyubov (Russian: Никола́й Никола́евич Боголю́бов; 21 August 1909 – 13 February 1992), also transliterated as Bogoliubov, was a Soviet mathematician and theoretical physicist known for a significant contribution to quantum field theory, classical and quantum statistical mechanics, and to the theory of dynamical systems; a recipient of the Dirac Prize (1992).

His son Nikolay Boglyubov (jr) is a theoretical physicist working in the fields of mathematical physics and statistical mechanics.


message 26: by Paw3pals (last edited Oct 07, 2013 04:43AM) (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments There is another profile for him with only one book but the name is spelled out (it looks like he always used his initials when publishing):

Nikolaj Nikolaeviic Bogoljubov


message 27: by Kai (new)

Kai (bushido_dragon) | 6 comments I updated the author information for N.N. Bogoliubov. I'll hold off on merging anything until someone else confirms best practice.


message 28: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (last edited Oct 07, 2013 07:16AM) (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
Merging in the ones you are sure are him should be fine; the spelling difference is quite small. (I would note all the other spellings in the description of the remaining profile.)

The ones that might be the son should not be merged unless you can be fairly certain they are not his son.


message 29: by Kai (new)

Kai (bushido_dragon) | 6 comments Thanks, Rivka. I merged the ones I was certain were for the same person and cleaned up the formatting on the others. I'll keep working my way through the Ns as I have time.


message 30: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments Letters R, S & W do not come up with a spreadsheet.

Are those letters dead?


message 31: by Susie (new)

Susie (dragonsusie) | 2472 comments Paw3pals wrote: "Letters R, S & W do not come up with a spreadsheet.

Are those letters dead?"


It's probably because the original profiles that those lists were based off of have since been merged.

I personally go through lists a bit each day, by using the "add book/author" link (Debbie showed me how!). Although I'm still stuck on A as it seems neverending... Just been starting with A^A (that's a space where the ^ is) and A^A. and A.^A. and A.^A^. In over a month I've only managed to get as far as A C initials!

Another way is to use the main search or look for common names, etc., then click on "find similar" on the edit screen. I double check all of them with WorldCat and/or Amazon, too, which takes a bit longer.


message 32: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments I also try to do a bit of the spreadsheet lists when I can.

The add book/author way is how I find most corrections; fixed all the Jürgen, Jörgen, Jørgen, Jörg, Jürg, Götz, Rüdiger, Günther, Günter errors I could find (example of errors for Jürgen - J. rgen, J rgen, Jrgen, rgen, J'Urgen, ja1/4rgen, Jürgen, j]rgen, j?rgen, Jü). Used Amazon Germany a lot.

What I find frustrating is that many errors could/should be fixed by the system and/or programmers. A simple mask for correct entry of names, dots after initials, etc.

Another discovery - using the add book/author way, type in any name & put a comma after it - get lots & lots.


message 33: by Susie (new)

Susie (dragonsusie) | 2472 comments Paw3pals wrote: "What I find frustrating is that many errors could/should be fixed by the system and/or programmers. A simple mask for correct entry of names, dots after initials, etc."

Might be something that's worth suggesting in the Feedback Group. Although I think they should fix the search first, as searching for any name with a strange character in it doesn't work - you have to replace those characters with standard ones to find them, or use Google.


Paw3pals wrote: "Another discovery - using the add book/author way, type in any name & put a comma after it - get lots & lots."

Cool, now that's a useful tip! Didn't think of that one! I usually spot some with commas when looking at other authors (always update authors for the whole book when I do a search, as often if one's wrong the others are wrong).

And Amazon are very good resources. I have Amazon UK, US & Germany linked, as well as WorldCat, so I can quicky flip through all of them to check. Amazon is often better than others at having the correct formats, though not always.


message 34: by Ine (new)

Ine | 263 comments Working on G, but if someone can explain this "add book/author way" thing to me, I'd be incredibly grateful! Is this some sort of autocomplete? Because if I do that on https://www.goodreads.com/book/new, I only get a dropdown with my previous entries.


message 35: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments Ine wrote: "Working on G, but if someone can explain this "add book/author way" thing to me, I'd be incredibly grateful! Is this some sort of autocomplete? Because if I do that on https://www.goodreads.com/boo..."

Look at the comment box immediately below this message, click on "add book/author" and select the author tab. What you type in is what you get (over 2 characters); for example, if you type in G T (g then space then t then space) you will get all the G T initials with no periods.


message 36: by Ine (new)

Ine | 263 comments Ahhhh! Thanks! That helps a lot. :)


message 37: by Philip (last edited May 28, 2014 03:09PM) (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments I was looking through B, and it looks like Brenda B Taylor should be merged with Brenda B. Taylor, but she is a Goodreads author so I think a Super Librarian has to do it.

Also the same thing as J J Tucker and J.J. Tucker.


message 38: by Deon (new)

Deon (deonva) | 3389 comments 37, actuall only GR staff can merge GR author profiles
there is a thread for that here:
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


message 39: by Philip (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments Deon wrote: "37, actuall only GR staff can merge GR author profiles
there is a thread for that here:
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/..."


Thanks, I knew a standard librarian could not and missed that thread, when I was looking around.


message 40: by Philip (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments Going through J I have to say it is amazing how many profiles have no books or reviews. Just states that they have spaces. If those all got removed it would shrink the list significantly.

I am guessing the clean-up script will take care of them at some point.


message 41: by Philip (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments I swear J is never ending. Been working through it for the last 2 weeks.


message 42: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments Philip wrote: "Going through J I have to say it is amazing how many profiles have no books or reviews. Just states that they have spaces. If those all got removed it would shrink the list significantly.

I am gue..."


Some of us correct the name anyway, because then that name Leaves the List. Just a suggestion.


message 43: by Philip (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments Paw3pals wrote: "Philip wrote: "Going through J I have to say it is amazing how many profiles have no books or reviews. Just states that they have spaces. If those all got removed it would shrink the list significa..."

I have been fixing those names also. Would be nice if that magical cleanup script would take care of them though :-p


message 44: by Philip (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments Finished J


message 45: by Paw3pals (new)

Paw3pals | 1939 comments Philip wrote: "Finished J"

Which was quite a lot; good job.


message 46: by Philip (last edited Aug 02, 2014 09:43AM) (new)

Philip (burnnerman) | 5913 comments Thanks.
Yeah. No idea how many I did. Because of the imports I know more will show up, but that would be easy to keep up with. I will see what letter I start on next.


message 47: by Linda (new)

Linda | 12 comments I would be more than happy to jump in and help if someone wants to give me direction. I'm a relatively new librarian and mostly have added covers or books that have not appeared on the list at all.


message 48: by [deleted user] (last edited Aug 08, 2014 06:46PM) (new)

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show... Should this 'K' have a period?
Here's a cover image from amazon.com that shows the name http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1493...


message 49: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42415 comments Mod
Yes. Merged with the profile that already did.


message 50: by Stephen (last edited Sep 26, 2014 05:37PM) (new)

Stephen (havan) | 333 comments Still a TON of these left to do. My method of finding them is to simply:

1) come to any discussion thread (may favorite is) https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...
2) click on the add book/author link above add comment area and select the author tab
3) enter any common given name followed by a single letter and a space then click on search.
and viola a clickable list of authors needing remediation (If you do your work in a new window launched by a right clicking, I find it's easier to keep track of where you are)



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