Encode::MAB2 - Das Maschinelle Austauschformat fuer Bibliotheken


This module and all the accompanying modules are to be regarded as ALPHA quality software. That means all interfaces, namespaces, functions, etc. are still subject to change.


  use Encode::MAB2;
  my $mab2 = 'Some string in MAB2 encoding';
  my $unicode = Encode::decode('MAB2',$mab2);


The Encode::MAB2 module works on the string level abstraction of MAB2 records. You can feed it a string in the encoding used by MAB2 and get a Unicode string back. The module only works in one direction, it does not provide a way to convert a Unicode string back into MAB2 encoding.


MAB2 is a German library data format and an encoding almost completely based on ASCII and ISO 5426:1983. On 2003-09-08 Die Deutsche Bibliothek published, the first official document that maps the MAB2 encoding to Unicode 4.0. The mapping provided by this module follows this publication. See below for small additional convenience tricks that are also implemented by the module to avert common errors.

                     ALERT: USE AT YOUR OWN RISK

                   You are responsible to determine
                applicability of information provided.


Besides the above mentioned mab_unic.pdf, the following documents provided invaluable help in developing the mapping presented in this module:


This module uses the module Unicode::Normalize to deliver the combining characters in the MAB2 record in normalization form C. We have taken precautions against common errors in MAB records:

  • If the dotless i (LATIN SMALL LETTER DOTLESS I) is victim of a composition process, it is treated like an i (LATIN SMALL LETTER I) before composition takes place.

  • If a composed letter is combined with both a diaeresis and a double acute, we ignore the diaeresis and pretend there was only a double acute.

Other modules in this package

This module comes with 6 modules that alleviate the parsing of MAB records. The modules are the following:


where Base is based on the file segm000.txt and each of the others is based on the according textfile in the directory on the server of Die Deutsche Bibliothek. More documentation can be found in MAB2::Record::Base.

In addition to that, there are two tie interfaces available: Tie::MAB2::Recno and Tie::MAB2::Id. These are the high-level access classes for MAB2 files that use all other modules presented in the package.