Monday, November 28, 2005

Canon of Faceted notation & Non Faceted Notation


Canon is one principle. Before enunciating his canons, Dr. Ranganathan studied the principles & canons laid down by W C Berwick Sayers, E C Richerdson & Henry Evelyn Bliss. He also critically studied the schemes of classification of his predecessors; & then in 1937, he wrote his prolegemona. The total number of canons enunciated in ed 2 of this book is 33. It was W C Berwick Sayers who invented the phrase ' Canons of classification'.

Canon of Faceted Notation Vs Canon of Non Faceted Notation

The Canon of faceted notation directs that 'A faceted notational system should be used when?
i) Length of base of the notation is about 10 & the universe is likely to contain more than a million or more entities or subjects ; and

ii) Length of base is about 56 & the universe is likely to contain 1,000 millions or more entities or subjects.

Where as the canon of non faceted notation directs that 'A non faceted notational system may be adequate when;

i) Length of base of the notationis about 10 & the universe is likely to contain not more than a million entities; and

ii) Length if base is about 56 & the universe is likely to contain not more than 1,000 million entities'.

The choice between these two canons may be determined on the capacity of these two different types of notational systems.

The capacity of the non faceted notational system even with as long as a base of 56-Indo-Arabic numbers-9, Roman capitals 24 and Roman smalls 23, can only provide about 10,000 million class numbers. On otherhand the faceted notational system with an average of four facets can provide as many as 1,000 trillion class numbers. As in the universe of subjects the number of subjects is constantly. Growing and may go for more beyond 1,000 trillion, faceted notational system would be helpful.


Pushpa Dhyani
Library classification Theory & principles
published by H.S. Poptai
New Delhi 110002.

SHABAHAT hUSSAIN, First published 1993
second revised & enlarged edition 2004
ISBN 81-7646-428-7


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