CMC Catalogs 10 Asian Language Books

The Cataloging Maintenance Center (CMC) received 10 Asian language books from Lenhardt Library of the Chicago Botanic Garden. Cheri Schuler-Faust had the task of cataloging these books. First Cheri had to determine which Asian language each book was in. Since the books had very little English, she downloaded the Google Translate app to her iPhone. 


The Google Translate app has the ability to use the camera of the phone to scan the book. Often, this meant scanning several pages or sections of pages to find the title, statement of responsibility, publication etc. When the characters were scannedGoogle Translate detected the language and translated the language to English. Once Cheri had the English translation, she used her computer (also using Google Translate) to translate the English back to the Asian language characters and Romanized version so she could copy the information in the bibliographic record.


Chinese Herb book cover

Color atlas of commonly used Chinese herbs.

Google Translate

This is the translation using Cheri’s iPhone and the Google Translate app.

Google Translation of herb book

This is the translation using Google Translate on the computer so Cheri could copy and paste the information into the bibliographic record.





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The Cataloging Maintenance Center is helping Illinois libraries catalog special collections to make them available to the public. If you have a special collection that needs to be cataloged, the CMC may be able to help. Contact them at 618.656.3216 x503 or visit the CMC webpage.


Funding for the Cataloging Maintenance Center is provided through the Illinois State Library and the Secretary of State and administered by Illinois Heartland Library System. The CMC provides statewide cataloging support for Illinois libraries, including free original and copy cataloging of eligible special collections, consultation on metadata projects, database cleanup for LLSAPs, cataloging training, and more. Learn more at