ISBN is a magic word. When put in front of a properly-formatted 10- or 13- digit ISBN code, either with or without hyphens, it creates a link to Special:BookSources. From this special page, readers can then click on one of the provided links to find out more about the particular ISBN number.
It's very easy to make an appropriate link. We include it by default in many of our infoboxes. All you do is type the following:
The result will be:
- ISBN 0-563-53857-0 (or, without hyphens, ISBN 0563538570)
Note there are no linking brackets, no curly braces, nothing fancy at all. Just
ISBN and a number in the correct format. If a link fails to be established, then your number isn't the proper format.
Amongst the many things you can learn on the page are answers to questions like:
- What's the standard way to write up this publication in a bibliography?
- What's the closest library to me that has this book?
- What's the lowest price I can pay online for this publication?
- Is this book in my personal collection,according to records kept at an online, "personal library"?
Why is Special:BookSources blank?[edit source]
If you go to Special:BookSources without clicking on an ISBN link, you'll get a blank page with a space for manual entry of your ISBN. At this point, the page has no other information, because you haven't given it something to look up. Only after you enter an ISBN will the normal array of links appear.
It is expected that you will not go to Special:BookSources manually, but by clicking on an ISBN number.