RIMMF Terminology

Documentation conventions

In this user guide, special keys on the keyboard are given in angle brackets:

<Ctrl> means Ctrl key
<Alt> means Alt key
<Ctrl>+key means hold down the Ctrl key, then press 'key'
<Ctrl><Alt>+key means hold down both Ctrl and Alt, then press 'key'

For example, <Ctrl><Alt>+H is our keyboard shortcut for 'Go Home': find the main RIMMF form and bring it to the top of the desktop–useful when you have opened a lot of records, etc.

The pipe character '|' is used when describing menu options.

For example, 'File|Open a Record' means to open the 'File' menu and select the 'Open a Record' item.


Some of the terms we use to describe the 'things' in RIMMF will be used elsewhere with different meanings. By using these terms we are not casting a vote against any movements to develop a new vocabulary to describe our workings with data. But we had to work with what we had. In addition, as providers of training for catalogers, we have perhaps erred on the side of the familiar, in an attempt to make RIMMF more accessible to those of us still immersed in MARC.


An element is the basic piece of data in a RIMMF record, similar to a field in a MARC record. In the typical presentation of a RIMMF record, an element consists of an Element Label (which describes the content, eg., “Place of Publication”), and a Text value (the data itself, eg. “London, England”).

There are many other components in a RIMMF Element, as may be seen by a visit to the Element Editor:

  • Element Source: answers the question 'who created this element?'
  • Element Name: formal, unique, name of the element
  • RIMMF ID: a numeric unique ID for the element
  • Element Type: a code that answers the question 'is this element an attribute or a relationship?'
  • Entity: the FRBR Entity to which the element 'belongs'
  • SubPropertyOf: the RIMMF Id or Element Name of an element's 'parent'
  • RDA Rule: a link to the Toolkit documentation for this element
  • Vocabulary ID: the ID of a vocabulary to which the element is linked (or 0)
  • Marc2Rda/B, Marc2Rda/A, Rda2Marc/B, Rda2Marc/A: Four customizable MARC Mapping components
  • Uri: link to rdvocab.info (registry) data about the element

Not all of the components described here are used for all elements. When a record is saved, only the RIMMF ID, Element Name, and Text value are output. When a record is loaded, we use the Element Name to process occurrence information for the element within the record, and the RIMMF ID to retrieve all other information about the element from the RDBMS.


A caption is a RIMMF Element that does not contain a Text value; its primary purpose is organizational: to group other related elements into a collapsible/expandable block.


A record is a collection of data elements for a single entity.


A template is a collection elements and captions. Elements in templates do not contain Text values (unless they are 'constant data').

The purpose of the template is to select and arrange elements and captions in such a way as to enhance the efficiency with which records are created. For example, one may design different templates to streamline different cataloging tasks.

In RIMMF, all records are created from templates.

Element set

An element set is the list of all RDA elements defined in the Toolit for a given entity. In RIMMF, element sets are used for reference only; they cannot be modified.

TMQ Elements

We have added a number elements and captions to RIMMF, not explicitly defined in the Toolkit, to which we loosely refer to as the “TMQ Elements”. These elements and captions add the functionality needed (in our opinion) for an implementation of RDA.

In the current version, all TMQ Elements are indicated visually by a trailing dagger, eg.

Authorized Access Point †

Term (Vocabulary)

A term is an item in a vocabulary. A term may consist of anything from a short alphanumeric code to a phrase.


A vocabulary is a collection of terms on a common topic. In RIMMF, vocabularies are not considered elements, but are linked to elements (via the Vocabulary ID). When an element which is linked to a vocabulary is being edited in RIMMF, all of the terms that belong to that vocabulary are available in the Text column as a dynamic list.


A FRBR Entity. All eleven FRBR entities are supported by RIMMF: Work, Expression, Manifestation, Item; Person, Family, CorporateBody; Concept, Object, Event, and Place.

Entity Index

In RIMMF, the entity index is a table that lists all of the records that are located in a chosen data folder. This index is the primary interface between the cataloger and his or her data.

Clone (a record)

To copy a record for a resource so that another similar resource can be described without repeating all of the data entry. When a record is cloned, certain elements are stripped out (not copied): The primary record identifier, and all other identifier that link the record to other records.


In the RIMMF record display, level describes the amount of indent or branching of an element.


In the RIMMF record display, a cell is the box-like structure that contains a label, a text value, a link to the toolkit, etc.

Record Prefix

When a record is created in RIMMF, it is assigned a sequential ID as a RIMMF Identifier. To further differentiate this ID, a record prefix can be pre-pended to it. Each user is prompted to set up such a prefix the first time the program starts.

A prefix may be as long as seems practical; it may contain any number or letter, but it must not contain blank spaces or the following symbols: & \ / : ? * ' “ < > |

Thus a prefix may be: an OCLC code; a MARC Organization code; an internet domain; an email address; and so on; e.g.: qpq-b4 = TMQ's OCLC code (qpq) hyphen name of computer (b4)

Assigning prefix is very important because without one, sharing records between computers (even from a laptop to a desktop) becomes problematic and risks overwriting records.

RIMMF Identifier

The RIMMF Identifier (abbreviated as 'RID') is a TMQ element, which, along with the Authorized Access Point (another TMQ element), was added to the program in order to facilitate linking between records.

Conceptually, records typically contain two types of RID–a single, primary RIMMF Identifier, and zero or more related RIMMF Identifiers that provide links to other records.

The primary RIMMF Identifier is a number, sequential in nature, automatically generated by the program, that uniquely identifies a record in the user's installation. The 'RID' usually begins with a record prefix (for which, see above). The 'RID' (and its element label) may look like this in a record:

RIMMF Identifier †             tmq00000234 

Each related RIMMF Identifier found in a record is the primary RIMMF identifier of another record.

In our implementation there are many discrete (over 50) RIMMF Identifiers; however, to the user they will always appear as in the example above.

Authorized Access Point

Although there are quite alot of pages in the Toolkit that talk about 'authorized access points', there are no elements defined for them in the ESV. We found that we had to create these elements in order to make RIMMF function correctly.

Like the RIMMF Identifier, each record also contains an 'Authorized Access Point', abbreviated as 'AAP' (note that in a Manifestation and an Item record this element is labelled 'Composite Key', aka 'CK').

The 'AAP'/'CK' functions as a 'heading' for a record–a human-readable representation of a record's content–whereas the RIMMF Identifier is similar to a 'system control number', i.e. it is an unique identifier.

In RIMMF, the AAP and RID appear in pairs: the former is filled in by the cataloger, and the latter is created by the program and may not be edited.

However, when one record is 'linked' to another record (via a relationship), this 'pairing' of RID and AAP changes in nature. See the 'links' section for more informaton.

rimmf1/docconv.txt · Last modified: 2023/06/07 20:39 by
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