Share Your Story: Project Electron Update

Since Project Electron kicked off in September, we’ve made significant progress on a number of different fronts. First, together with our Marist College partners, we created a milestones document which lays out major phases of work. We also developed some general principles and overall approaches to licensing project deliverables, including code, documentation and planning documents. Since we anticipate both of these documents will change over time, we’ve versioned them using git (and have pushed a copy to GitHub) so we can keep track of those changes. Continue reading

Code4Lib and Archives

I’m just back from Code4Lib, a conference of people who work with technology in libraries and archives, held this year in Raleigh, North Carolina. This is the third time I’ve been to Code4Lib, and as before, I found it a conference that is both stimulating and exhausting; that takes a lot, but gives a lot in return. Continue reading

OCLC Research Webinar: “Achieving Thresholds for Discovery: Addressing Issues with EAD to Increase Discovery and Access”

If, like me, you missed out on yesterday’s webinar from OCLC Research titled “Achieving Thresholds for Discovery: Addressing Issues with EAD to Increase Discovery and Access,” you can now view a recording of the presentation. It’s worth your time to listen to Merrilee Proffitt (OCLC Research) talk about her recent article on EAD tag analysis in the Code4Lib Journal, and also to listen to Dan Santamaria (Princeton University) talk about the work of his institution’s Archival Description Working Group in improving their archival description as well as their discovery system for archival materials. A few months back, I wrote about a presentation that Dan and others from Princeton gave at SAA this past August, and found that this webinar nicely complemented that earlier presentation.

Improving Search Engine Traffic to DIMES

Over the last several months, I’ve noticed that DIMES is getting a very small number of hits from search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing. In an effort to increase traffic from those sources, I’ve added some structured data to the pages for finding aids and library materials that major search engines use to improve their search results. By adding this markup to DIMES, we should be able to improve our presence on results pages while also increasing our relevance rankings, which will move us closer to the top of the results set. Continue reading

National VIVO Project Team Meeting report

Yesterday I attended a presentation at the Weill Cornell Medical College on VIVO, a system that can aggregate information about research and scholarship from a variety of data sources. Although it comes out of the biomedical research community, VIVO can theoretically supply this same functionality to any academic discipline. In addition, because information in VIVO is typically derived from an academic institution’s records, it is generally more trustworthy and accurate than information in a system like LinkedIn or, where an individual can edit their own profile and so could misrepresent themselves and their expertise.

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Updates to XTF

A number of changes have recently been made to our XTF discovery interface system.

The most obvious one is that we’re now calling the system DIMES, which was a name chosen a while back in a naming contest which you all voted on. Congrats again to Laura for coming up with the winning idea! Along with this name change, we’ve also changed the URL for the system to Continue reading

Report on code4lib 2013

A few weeks ago, I attended the annual code4lib conference in Chicago. Code4lib is more than a conference; it’s a loose collective of software developers, programmers and people who work with technology in libraries, all of whom connect through a listserv, an internet relay chat (IRC) channel, and various forms of social media in addition to the annual meeting. Code4libbers tend to have a strong open-source bias, and are also mostly people who work for secondary education institutions. I always find code4lib conferences to be inspiring and a little overwhelming. There’s a flood of new information, and many old friends to catch up with and new people to meet.

The last few years, many of the individuals attending the conference have become much more interested in archives, and in applying technical solutions developed for library uses to archives. This year I noticed a lot more interest in issues surrounding archival discovery and preservation systems. Continue reading