Friday, July 17, 2009

What if OpenURL resolvers could blog?

I thought about this when I was thinking about having support for unAPI, etc. I found Mike Giarlo's plugin for WordPress, which added this, and I could make it work for txtckr, but why should I?

I may have overlooked something, (since I don't use WordPress), but:
  • what if WordPress was the OpenURL resolver, (well, actually it wasn't but just looked like it)?
  • what if txtckr could redirect to the WordPress post which had the request response once it had made a post which contained all of that info?
The advantage of automatic posting the details and output of an OpenURL resolver, (and subsequent redirection), to a blog post is that it increases the discoverability of the item being requested.

There's also the tools available through something like the WordPress platform, which further promotes the re-distribution of information about articles, books, etc., including COinS, RSS feeds, OAI-PMH, unAPI, etc.

Of course there's also the ability for others to comment and refer, (trackback), on the item being represented in the blog post.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

txtckr under development

While I was working at Crop & Food Research, I developed an OpenURL resolver called textseeka.

txtckr is a GPL, (open-source), OOP focussed, replacement for textseeka, based on what I know now, in terms of programming, OpenURL, webservices and metadata sources.

This is not a simple overnight project, complicated by the fact that I need access to the original code-base, which is still at my old work. Over time, (snatched here and there), txtckr will be fleshed out, starting from the bones that are there now, (currently just a class for the "context object").

Saturday, July 4, 2009

If you can't bet them, join 'em...

I've been at UCOL Library for a while now, which means I'm firmly part of the Ex Libris picture, as we have Voyager, which is quite a part of my job, as the Information systems Librarian.

As such, I've spent quite a bit of time putting lipstick on the pig... and one of the features I've implemented recently is an APA citation for each of the books in our catalogue, which is bottom-rightish. This picture might be a little fuzzy, (but you can't see it unless you're on-campus anyway...):

Initially, I thought this would be quite easy, since I thought we must have at least some OCLC-derived records in our catalogue. The APA citation service requires an OCLC number, and I learnt that there are not that many records which have OCLC numbers... but there are, of course, lots which have ISBNs.

The solution required writing some web scripts which:
  • do a lookup on the ISBN, and get the OCLC number
  • use the OCLC number to get the APA citation
  • generate JSON output so this is accessible to the browser
Actually, thinking about it, I should be able to do this with javascript through and through... shouldn't I?

Isn't this what LibX does? Maybe this is part of what is currently possible with their LibApps?