Internet Speculative Fiction Database

ISFDB: The Internet Speculative Fiction Database
Type of site
www.isfdb.org
Alexa rankNegative increase 129,626 (October 2018)[1]
CommercialNo
RegistrationNone to view
Launched1995
Current status1,531,160 story titles from 183,021 authors[2]

The Internet Speculative Fiction Database (ISFDB) is a database of bibliographic information on genres considered speculative fiction, including science fiction and related genres such as fantasy fiction and horror fiction.[3][4] The ISFDB is a volunteer effort, with both the database and wiki being open for editing and user contributions. The ISFDB database and code are available under Creative Commons licensing[5] and there is support within both Wikipedia and ISFDB for interlinking.[6] The data are reused by other organizations, such as Freebase, under the creative commons license.[7]

Purpose

The ISFDB database indexes authors, novels, short stories, publishers, awards, and magazines. Additionally, it supports author pseudonyms, series, awards, and cover art plus interior illustration credits which is combined into integrated author, artist, and publisher bibliographies. An ongoing effort is verification of publication contents and secondary bibliographic sources against the database with the goals being data accuracy and to improve the coverage of speculative fiction to 100%. The current database statistics are available online.[2] ISFDB was the winner of the 2005 Wooden Rocket Award in the Best Directory Site category.[8]

While the ISFDB is primarily a bibliographic research database it also contains biographic data for books, authors, series, and publishers that do not have an article on Wikipedia, particularly those unlikely to have such an article because they do not meet Wikipedia's notability standards.

In 1998, Cory Doctorow wrote in Science Fiction Age: "The best all-round guide to things science-fictional remains the Internet Speculative Fiction Database".[4] In April 2009, Zenkat wrote on Freebase "...it is widely considered one of the most authoritative sources about Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror literature available on the Internet."[7]

As of May 2009, Quantcast estimates that the ISFDB is visited by over 32,000 people monthly.[9]

As a real-world example of a non-trivial database, the schema and MySQL files from the ISFDB have been used in a number of tutorials. ISFDB schema and data were used throughout Chapter 9 of the book Rails For Java Developers.[10] It was also used in a series of tutorials by Lucid Imagination on Solr, an enterprise search platform.[11]