Planet Code4Lib

Change to FAST Service / OCLC Dev Network

The original search interface for FAST will be retired on 31 March 2016.

Jobs in Information Technology: February 10, 2016 / LITA

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week:

Penn State University Libraries, Reference and Instruction Librarian, Knowledge Commons, University Park, PA

Penn State University Libraries, Diversity Residency Librarian Program, University Park, PA

Brown University, Senior Library Applications Developer, Providence, RI

Reaching Across Illinois Library System, Systems Supervisor, Burr Ridge, IL

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

President Submits Budget Request to Congress / District Dispatch

ALA is disappointed that President Obama's budget would cut federal funds to libraries, which are on the front lines delivering services to all Americans.

ALA is disappointed that President Obama’s budget would cut federal funds to libraries, which are on the front lines delivering services to all Americans.

President Obama sent to Congress yesterday his $4.23 trillion dollar FY17 budget request, which was greeted with uniform skepticism among many Republicans. This will be the President’s final budget to Congress before he leaves office.

Proponents for library funding are disappointed in the decreased funding request for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) of over $500,000. A more severe cut of nearly $950,000 is recommended for the Grants to States program, which will result in a reduced grant allocation for every state. Also recommended for cuts is the Native American Library Services (cut over $200,000) and the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian program (cut by $500,000). The National Leadership Libraries program, however, is recommended to receive an increase of $628,000 while funds to IMLS for Research, Evaluation, and Data Collection are increased by over $200,000.

Given the tight budget atmosphere in Washington and a search for programs to cut, the President’s recommended cuts for LSTA could not come at a more inopportune time.

In a statement to the media, ALA President Sari Feldman noted “we are truly disappointed that the President’s budget does not recognize the value libraries bring to our country. Every day America’s libraries create individual opportunity and community progress…by cutting federal funds to libraries, the President’s budget is making it more difficult for libraries to do their job.”

For Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL), the news was more encouraging. This program which provides funds for school libraries was recommended to receive level funding at $27 million. This was the first time the President recommended funding for IAL – last year the President’s budget did not recommend any funding for IAL.

Overall, education funding would receive approximately a three percent increase in the President’s request.

 

The post President Submits Budget Request to Congress appeared first on District Dispatch.

LC Reviews its File Formats for Preservation Recommendations / Roy Tennant

lcIn an ongoing commitment to keep up with the changing world of preservation, the Library of Congress is doing it’s annual review of its “Recommended Formats Statement”. The stated purposes of the document are:

One purpose of the Statement is to provide internal guidance within the Library to help inform acquisitions of collections materials (other than materials received through the Copyright Office). A second purpose is to inform the creative and library communities on best practices for ensuring the preservation of, and long-term access to, the creative output of the nation and the world.

In other words, for those of us interested in keeping both physical and digital works around for as long as possible we should pay attention to what LC says on the subject. For most material types they provide “Preferred” formats and “Acceptable”. In some cases, there are no “Acceptable” recommendations.

Now given that care is taken to try to pick the most long-lived formats it’s unlikely that the recommendations will change very much from year to year, but it’s worth paying attention anyway. This is our chance to provide feedback to the Library of Congress on anything we want to see changed in future iterations of this useful document. If preservation is an orchard you labor in, now is the time to take another look at this. See the blog post linked above for your options for providing feedback.

Keeping Our Tools Sharp: Approaching the Annual Review of the Library of Congress Recommended Formats Statement / Library of Congress: The Signal

The following post is by Ted Westervelt, head of acquisitions and cataloging for U.S. Serials in the Arts, Humanities & Sciences section at the Library of Congress.

Since first launching its Recommended Formats Statement (then called Recommended Format Specifications in 2014), the Library of Congress has committed to treating it as an important part of its digital preservation strategy. As such, it follows two of the key tenets of digital preservation: collaboration and iteration.

The preservation of and provision of long-term access to the full range of digital objects, especially in these relatively early years, are not ones that can be carried out comprehensively or successfully by a single group or institution. This is an effort that must be carried out collaboratively and cooperatively, with an appreciation of the works of others and an imperative to share the work one is carrying out with others as well. Likewise, the great possibility inherent in the digital world for growth, change and development in the creation and dissemination of digital objects requires us to be responsive to those changes. As the objects we wish to preserve and make accessible change and adapt, the plans, practices and rules we create must change and adapt along with them. In short, everything we do in digital preservation must be if not in a constant state of flux, then sufficiently flexible to changes and ideas from across the field.

The Library of Congress’ Recommended Formats Statement has always had this dual charge in mind. The Statement was developed and implemented to help provide Library of Congress staff with guidance in building the collection. It identifies the technical characteristics of both physical and digital works that best encourage preservation and long-term access. This is not aimed at the migration or transformation of content after acquisition by an archiving institution; but looks more towards informing decisions about the creation or acquisition of that content, where such guidance can be of great value.

By Udo Grimberg / Deutsch: Hund der in den Computer schaut [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

By Udo Grimberg / Deutsch: Hund der in den Computer schaut [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

It is crucial that anyone involved with digital works is aware of the full scope of the digital life cycle. For acquiring or creating digital objects that one cannot see throughout their life cycle is an expenditure of resources with diminished returns (and potentially none, if the object is lost as a result). It is worth remembering that ‘a puppy is not just for Christmas’ and neither is a digital object just for the first moment you hold it. The information that the Statement provides Library staff enables them to make more informed decisions, especially in the acquisition and creation of digital works, which will enhance the likelihood that the content can be managed throughout its lifecycle.

The basic information that the Statement provides also has value for other institutions or organizations. Since the Statement is the result of the collective effort at the Library of Congress of experts in all aspects of the creation and distribution of digital objects, the information and hierarchies provided can be useful for one’s own digital preservation planning no matter in what part of the business cycle one is – as a creator, publisher, vendor, archivist, etc.

In order to meet these needs – to share our knowledge and build on it and to ensure that it is in sync with the current state of digital creation and preservation, the Library has actively engaged with its colleagues who are also stakeholders in the digital world. Communication of this work to others who might be interested has been a consistent effort since it first went public almost two years ago. Through conferences, articles, blog posts and listserv messages, the Library has worked to ensure that the information in the Statement gets to anyone who might find it useful in their own work with preservation and long-term access. Nor has this effort fallen on fallow ground. We are pleased to see steady usage of the Recommended Formats Statement website and downloading of the Statement itself every day and every month. Moreover, the dissemination of this work is now being undertaken by others as well as by the Library itself.

This past autumn, the Digital Preservation Coalition included the Statement in its Digital Preservation Handbook. Around the same time, the Association for Library Collections & Technical Services recommended the Statement as a resource in one of its e-forums. Beyond the undeniable pleasure of this sort of validation of our efforts from such esteemed colleagues, the sharing of our work by others helps increase greatly the exposure of the Statement and the chances that the information in it will get to people who could use that information or who might have valuable input on how to improve it. Both outcomes are crucial to our digital preservation efforts.

In complement to the general dissemination of the Statement for the use of others, the Library determined that an annual review of the Statement would ensure that it remains current and useful, to the Library itself and to other stakeholders. Beyond giving its in-house experts the chance to review their work in light of any new knowledge or experience, the Library actively solicits feedback from across the digital preservation sphere, in order to make the best possible revised and updated version. As malleable as the universe of digital creation can be, we do not expect whole-scale change across the board; but we do know that some things will change, even if just our understanding of them and so reviewing our work is very much worth the effort.

The Library has already completed one round of this review and revision, to very good effect. The feedback from across the spectrum enabled us to create a far more user-friendly document and one with important revisions, most notably to our still image file formats and to our audio works metadata. This revision did not create an entirely new document; but it did create a better one.

By ANKDADA007 / Human_pyramid_by_little_kids [CC BY 1.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

By ANKDADA007 / Human_pyramid_by_little_kids [CC BY 1.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Now we are looking at our second annual revision of the Recommended Formats Statement. Between March and June, our teams of experts here at the Library will be reviewing their sections of the Statement and making whatever changes they feel will improve it in the new edition due out at the end of June. And in this, we very much would like and need the input of our external stakeholders, from some of whom we have heard already. Beyond our general belief that the Statement has some value for anyone involved in digital preservation, given the documented use and dissemination of the Statement, we know that there are those out there who agree with us. So, please share your thoughts, comments, feedback and input with us, either through this post, the contacts page or by e-mailing me (thwe at loc dot gov.)  The work we are attempting to do with the Recommended Formats Statement will have all the more value in this great collaborative effort of digital preservation the more guidance we get from you in developing and improving it.

Evolving Schema.org in Practice Pt1: The Bits and Pieces / Richard Wallis

I am often asked by people with ideas for extending or enhancing Schema.org how they go about it.  These requests inevitably fall into two categories – either ‘How do I decide upon and organise my new types & properties and relate them to other vocabularies and ontology‘ or ‘now I have my proposals, how do I test, share, and submit them to the Schema.org community?

I touch on both of theses areas in a free webinar I recorded for DCMI/ASIS&T a couple of months ago.  It is in the second in a two part series Schema.org in Two Parts: From Use to Extension .  The first part covers the history of Schema.org and the development of extensions.  That part is based up on my experiences applying and encouraging the use of Schema.org with bibliographic resources, including the set up and work of the Schema Bib Extend W3C Community Group – bibliographically focused but of interest to anyone looking to extend Schema.org.

To add to those webinars, the focus of this post is in answering the ‘now I have my proposals, how do I test, share, and submit them to the Schema.org community?‘ question.  In later posts I will move onto how the vocabulary its examples and extensions are defined and how to decide where and how to extend.

What skills do you need

Not many.  If you want to add to the vocabulary and/or examples you will naturally need some basic understanding of the vocabulary and the way you navigate around the Schema.org site, viewing examples etc.  Beyond that you need to be able to run a few command line instructions on your computer and interact with GitHub.  If you are creating examples, you will need to understand how Microdata, RDFa, and JSON-LD mark up are added to html.

I am presuming that you want to do more than tweak a typo, which could be done directly in the GitHub interface, so in this post I step through the practice of working locally, sharing with others, and proposing via a Github Pull Request your efforts..

How do I start

Environment
GitHub You need to set up the environment on your PC, this needs a local installation of Git so that you can interact with the Schema.org source and a local copy of the Google App Engine SDK to run your local copy of the Schema.org site.  The following couple of links should help you get these going.

Getting the Source

This is a two-step process.  Firstly you need your own parallel fork of the Schema.org repository.  If you have not yet, create a user account at Github.com.  They are free, unless you want to keep your work private.

Fork Logged into Github, go to the Schema.org repository page – https://github.com/schemaorg/schemaorg, and select Fork this will create a schemaorg repository copy under your account.

Create yourself a working area on your PC and via a command line/terminal window place yourself in that directory to run the following git command, with MyAccount being replaced with your Github account name:

git clone https://github.com/MyAccount/schemaorg.git

This will download and unwrap a copy of the code into a schemaorg subdirectory of your working directory.

Running a Local Version 
In the directory where you downloaded the code, run the following command:

dev_appserver.py schemaorg

This should result in the output at the command line that looks something like this:

deimos_dev_appserver

The important line being the one telling you module “default” running at: http://localhost:8080 If you drop that web address into your favourite browser you should end up looking at a familiar screen.

local-schemaorg Success! You should now be looking at a version that operates exactly like the live version, but is totally contained on your local PC.  Note the message on the home page reminding you which version you are viewing.

Running a Shared Public Version
It is common practice to want to share proposed changes with others before applying them to the Schema.org repository in Github.  Fortunately there is an easy free way of running a Google App Engine in the cloud.  To do this you will need a Google account which most of us have.  When logged in to your Google account visit this page: https://console.cloud.google.com

From the ‘Select a project‘ menu Create a project..  Give your project a name – choose a name that is globally unique.  There is a convention that we use names that start with ‘sdo-‘ as an indication that it is a project running a Schema.org instance.

app_yaml To ready your local code to be able to be uploaded into the public instance you need to make a minor change in a file named app.yaml in the schemaorg directory.  Use your favourite text editor to change the line near the top of the file that begins application to have a value that is the same as the project name you have just crated.  Note that lines beginning with a ‘#’ character are commented out and have no effect on operation.  For this post I have created an App Engine project named sdo-blogpost.

To upload the code run the following command:

appcfg.py update schemaorg/

sdo upload You should get output that indicates the upload process has happened successfully. Dependant on your login state, you may find a browser window appearing to ask you to login to Google. Make sure at this point you login as the user that created the project.

appspot To view your new shared instance go to the following address http://sdo-blogpost.appspot.com – modified to take account of your project name http://<project name>.appspot.com.

Working on the Files 
I will go into the internal syntax of the controlling files in a later post.  However, if you would like a preview, take a look in the data directory you will find a large file named schema.rdfa.  This contains the specification for the core of the Schema.org vocabulary – for simple tweaks and changes you may find things self-explanatory.  Also in that directory you will find several files that end in ‘-examples.txt‘.  As you might guess, these contain the examples that appear in the Schema.org pages.

Evolving and Sharing
How much you use your personal Github schemaorg repositoy fork to collaborate with like minded colleagues, or just use it as a scratch working area for yourself, is up to you.  However you choose to organise yourself, you will find the following git commands, that should be run when located in the schemaorg subdirectory, useful:

  • git status – How your local copy is instep with your repository
  • git add <filename> – adds file to the ones being tracked against your repository
  • git commit <filename> – commits (uploads) local changed or added file to your repository
  • git commit –a – commits (uploads) all changed or added files to your repository

It is recommended to commit as you go.

Requesting Changes 
The mechanism for requesting a change of any type to Schema.org is to raise a Github Pull Request.  Each new release of Schema.org is assembled by the organising team reviewing and hopefully accepting each Pull Request. You can see the current list of requests awaiting acceptance in Github.  To stop the comments associated with individual requests getting out of hand, and to make it easier to track progress, the preferred way of working is to raise a Pull Request as a final step in completing work on an Issue.

Raising an Issue first enables discussion to take place around proposals as they take shape.  It is not uncommon for a final request to differ greatly from an original idea after interaction with others in the comment stream.

So I suggest that you raise an Issue in the Schema.org repository for what you are attempting to solve.  Try to give it a good explanatory Title, and explain what you intend in the comment.   This is where the code in your repository and the appspot.com working version can be very helpful in explaining and exploring the issue.

Pull rquest When ready to request, take yourself to your repository’s home page to create a New Pull request.  Providing you do not create a new branch in the code, any new commits you make to your repository will become part of that Pull Request.  A very handy feature in the real world where inevitably you want to make minor changes just after you say that you are done!

Look out for the next post in this series in which I’ll cover working in the different file types that make up Schema.org and its extensions.

Welcome Trey Grainger! / SearchHub

We’re happy to announce another new addition to the Lucidworks team! Trey Grainger has joined as Lucidworks SVP of Engineering where he’ll be heading up our engineering efforts for both open source Apache Lucene/Solr and our Lucidworks Fusion platform, and our other product offerings.

Trey most recently served as the Director of Engineering on the Search & Recommendations team at CareerBuilder, where he built out a team of several dozen software engineers and data scientists to deliver a robust semantic search, data analytics, and recommendation engine platform. This platform contained well over a billion documents and powered over 100 million searches per day across a large combination of consumer-facing websites and B2B Software as a Service products.

Trey is also the co-author of Solr in Action, the comprehensive example-driven guide to Apache Solr (his co-author was Tim Potter, another Lucidworks engineer).

Trey received his MBA in Management of Technology from Georgia Tech, studied Computer Science, Business, and Philosophy at Furman University, and has also completed Masters-level work in Information Retrieval and Web Search from Stanford University.

We sat down with Trey to learn more about his passion for search:

When did you first get started working with Apache Lucene?

In 2008, I was the lead engineer for CareerBuilder’s newly-formed search team and was tasked with looking for potential options to replace the company’s existing usage of Microsoft’s FAST search engine. Apache Lucene was a mature option at that point, and Apache Solr was rapidly maturing to the point where it could support nearly all of the necessary functionality that we needed. After some proof of concept work, we decided to migrate to Solr, which enabled us to leverage and extend the best Lucene had to offer, while providing a highly reliable out-of-the-box search server which supported distributed search (scale out with shards, scale up with replicas) and an extensively pluggable architecture and set of configuration options. We started migrating to Solr in 2009 and completed the migration in 2010, by which time the Lucene and Solr projects had actually merged their code bases into one project. Ever since then, I’ve had the tremendous opportunity to help develop, speak about, write about, and run teams pushing forward the tremendous capabilities available in the Lucene/Solr ecosystem.

How has search evolved over the past couple years? Where do you think it’ll be in the next 10?

Over the last decade, the keyword search box has really evolved to become the de facto user interface for exploring data and for navigating most websites and applications. Companies used to pay millions of dollars to license search technology that did little more than basic text search, highlighting, and faceting. As Lucene/Solr came on the scene and commoditized those capabilities, search engineers were able to fully embrace the big data era and focus on building out scalable infrastructure to run their open-source-based search systems. With the rise of cloud computing and virtual machines, Solr likewise developed to scale elastically with automatic sharding, replication, routing, and failover in such a way that most of the hard infrastructure work has now also become commoditized. Lucene/Solr have also become near-real-time systems, enabling an impressive suite of real-time analytics and matching capabilities.

With all of these changes, I’ve seen the value proposition for search shift significantly from “providing a keyword box”, to “scalable navigation through big data”, and another massive shift is now underway. Today, more companies than ever are viewing search not just as infrastructure to enable access to data, but instead as the killer application needed to provide insights and highly-relevant answers to help their customers and move their businesses forward.

I thus anticipate seeing an ever growing focus on domain-driven relevance over the coming years. We’re already seeing industry-leading companies develop sophisticated semantic search capabilities that drive tremendous customer value, and I see the next decade being one where such intelligent capabilities are brought to the masses.

What do you find most exciting in the current search technology landscape?

The current frontier of search relevancy (per my answer to the last question) is what most excites me right now in the search technology landscape. Now that core text search, scaling, and cluster management have become much more commoditized, we’re beginning to see increased focus on relevancy as a key competitive differentiator across many search applications. Doing relevancy well includes adding capabilities like query intent inference, entity extraction, disambiguation, semantic and conceptual search, automatic classification and extraction of knowledge from documents, machine-learned ranking, using clickstream feedback for boosting and collaborative filtering, per-user personalization and recommendations, and evolving search to be able to able to provide answers instead of just lists of documents as a response to natural language questions. Many of these capabilities require external systems to support sophisticated workflows and feedback loops (such as those already built into Lucidworks Fusion through the combination pipelines with Solr + Spark), and Lucidworks is at the forefront of pushing this next generation of intelligent search applications.

Where are the biggest challenges in the search space?

Some of the most fun challenges I’ve tackled in my career have been building systems for inferring query intent, recommendation systems, personalized search, and machine-learned relevancy models. There’s one key thing I learned about search along the way: nothing is easy at scale or in the tail. It took me years of building out scalable search infrastructure (with mostly manual relevancy tuning) before I had sufficient time to really tackle the long tail of relevancy problems using machine learning to solve them in an optimal way.

What’s particularly unique about the search space is that it requires deep expertise across numerous domains to do really well. For example, the skillsets needed to build and maintain scalable infrastructure include topics like distributed systems, data structures, performance and concurrency optimization, hardware utilization, and network communication. The skills needed to tackle relevancy include topics like domain expertise, feature engineering, machine learning, ontologies, user testing, and natural language processing. It’s rare to find people with all of these skillsets, but to really solve hard search problems well at scale and in the tail, all of these topics are important to consider.

What attracted you to Lucidworks?

Interesting problems and a shared vision for what’s possible. What attracted me to Lucidworks is opportunity to work with visionaries in the search space building search technology that will help the masses derive intelligence from their data both at scale and in the tail. Search is a really hard problem, and I’m excited to be in great company trying to solve that problem well.

What will you be working on at Lucidworks?

As SVP of Engineering, I’ll be heading up our engineering efforts around both open source Lucene/Solr, as well as Lucidworks Fusion and our other exciting product offerings. With Lucidworks employing a large percentage of Lucene/Solr committers, we take good stewardship of the open source project very seriously, and I’m excited to be able to work more on the strategic direction of our open source contributions. Additionally, I’ll be working to drive Fusion as the next generation platform for building search-driven, intelligent applications. I’m incredibly excited to be working with such a top-notch team at Lucidworks, and am looking forward to building out what will be the most scalable, dependable, easy to use, and highly relevant search product on the market.


Welcome, Trey!

The post Welcome Trey Grainger! appeared first on Lucidworks.com.

DSPACE USERS: Feedback Requested on Next User Interface for DSpace / DuraSpace News

From Tim Donohue, DSpace Tech Lead

You may recall, in late 2015, we held a DSpace User Interface (UI) Prototype Challenge. From our amazing developer community, we received a total of nine UI prototype submissions, using a variety of technologies (e.g. Java web frameworks, client side Javascript, Ruby on Rails).

https://wiki.duraspace.org/display/DSPACE/DSpace+UI+Prototype+Challenge

Video demos of UI prototypes/technologies

ALA disappointed at White House budget cut to state grants to libraries / District Dispatch

Cutting funds to libraries hinders services being delivered directly to people in their communities

Cherry Hill Public Library

Libraries directly deliver a wide range of services to Americans in their local communities throughout the nation. (Pictured here: Cherry Hill Public Library)

After reviewing President Obama’s Fiscal 2017 Budget released today, Sari Feldman, president of the American Library Association (ALA), issued the following statement:

We are truly disappointed that the President’s budget does not recognize the value libraries bring to our country. Every day America’s libraries create individual opportunity and community progress. It is ironic that the President has cut federal funds considering libraries are on the front lines directly serving all Americans without exception and that our work with individuals and communities advances our country in education, employment, and entrepreneurship. By cutting federal funds to libraries, the President’s budget is making it more difficult for libraries to do their job.

Feldman said cutting nearly a million dollars to grants to state library programs means: fewer children will benefit from reading and learning programs; fewer people will get the skills training they need to seek and sustain employment; fewer small businesses can research markets in order to grow; fewer Americans can search for health care resources and maintain health records; and fewer parents can investigate how to send their children to college and apply for financial aid.

 

The post ALA disappointed at White House budget cut to state grants to libraries appeared first on District Dispatch.

Webinar explores collaboration to serve military & their families through libraries / District Dispatch

ALA's Larra Clark and Ann Estes with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, led a webinar on how public libraries can get involved in a new initiative to serve military and their families.

ALA’s Larra Clark (left) and Ann Estes (right foreground) with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, led a webinar on how public libraries can get involved in a new initiative to serve military and their families.

The ALA and the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) introduced their new partnership to the first round of potential pilot libraries last week. The effort provides an opportunity for libraries to add to their capacity to serve military members and their families with customized financial education and resources in concert with certified credit counselors.

Larra Clark, deputy director of the ALA Office for Information Technology Policy, and Ann Estes, NFCC vice president of business development, shared information about program goals and benefits, research related to financial needs and program outcomes, and information about the NFCC’s member and communications reach.

As noted earlier, members of the U.S. armed forces, Coast Guard, veterans, and their families face financial challenges often not adequately addressed by resources designed for the general public. ALA and NFCC will leverage local member agencies and libraries to help improve the financial lives of service members, veterans and their families.

If you are interested, you can download the slides and view the webinar here: https://nfcc.adobeconnect.com/p7d6dz0ru36/.

We had a little bit of a hiccup with the sound in the first five minutes, so please jump ahead to the 5:10 mark to catch the full audio.

If you would like to learn more about this initiative, please contact Larra Clark at lclark@alawash.org or by phone at: 202-403-8213. NFCC and ALA will announce the local communities and libraries where the program will first be launched in the coming weeks.

The post Webinar explores collaboration to serve military & their families through libraries appeared first on District Dispatch.

Open Journal Systems - 2.4.8 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Release Date: 
Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Last updated February 9, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 9, 2016.
Log in to edit this page.

The Public Knowledge Project is pleased to announce the release of OJS 2.4.8.

This release builds on the 2.4.7 and 2.4.7-1 releases to collect the numerous minor fixes and tweaks that have since been completed. It adds numerous translation updates and several new features. It includes a substantial improvement to the PKP LOCKSS PLN plugin1.

Our thanks go out to our partners and the many community translators and developers whose contributions make our work possible.

The Malware Museum / David Rosenthal

Mikko Hypponen and Jason Scott at the Internet Archive have put up the Malware Museum:
a collection of malware programs, usually viruses, that were distributed in the 1980s and 1990s on home computers. Once they infected a system, they would sometimes show animation or messages that you had been infected. Through the use of emulations, and additionally removing any destructive routines within the viruses, this collection allows you to experience virus infection of decades ago with safety.
The museum is an excellent use of emulation and well worth a visit.

I discussed the issues around malware in my report on emulation. The malware in the Malware Museum is too old to be networked, and thus avoids the really difficult issues that running software with access to the network that is old, and thus highly vulnerable, causes.

Even if emulation can ensure that only the virtual machine and not its host is infected, and users can be warned not to input any personal information to it, this may not be enough. The goal of the infection is likely to be to co-opt the virtual machine into a botnet, or to act as a Trojan on your network. If you run this vulnerable software you are doing something that a reasonable person would understand puts other people's real machines at risk. The liability issues of doing so bear thinking about.

It’s not just me that’s getting old / Manage Metadata (Diane Hillmann and Jon Phipps)

Having just celebrated (?) another birthday at the tail end of 2015, the topics of age and change have been even more on my mind than usual. And then two events converged. First I had a chat with Ted Fons in a hallway at Midwinter, and he asked about using an older article I’d published with Karen Coyle way back in early 2007 (“Resource Description and Access (RDA): Cataloging Rules for the 20th Century”). The second thing was a message from Research Gate that reported that the article in question was easily the most popular thing I’d ever published. My big worry in terms of having Ted use that article was that RDA had experienced several sea changes in the nine (!) years since the article was published (Jan./Feb. 2007), so I cautioned Ted about using it.

Then I decided I needed to reread the article and see whether I had spoken too soon.

The historic rationale holds up very well, but it’s important to note that at the time that article was written, the JSC (now the RSC) was foundering, reluctant to make the needed changes to cut ties to AACR2. The quotes from the CC:DA illustrate how deep the frustration was at that time. There was a real turning point looming for RDA, and I’d like to believe that the article pushed a lot of people to be less conservative and more emboldened to look beyond the cataloger tradition.

In April of 2007, a mere few months from when this article came out, ALA Publishing arranged for the famous “London Meeting” that changed the course of RDA. Gordon Dunsire and I were at that meeting–in fact it was the first time we met. I didn’t even know much about him aside from his article in the same DLIB issue. As it turns out, the RDA article was elevated to the top spot, thus stealing some of his thunder, so he wasn’t very happy with me. The decision made in London to allow DCMI to participate by building the vocabularies was a game changer, and Gordon and I were named co-chairs of a Task Group to manage that process.

So as I re-read the article, I realized that the most important bits at the time are probably mostly of historical interest at this point. I think the most important takeaway is that RDA has come a very long way since 2007, and in some significant ways is now leading the pack in terms of its model and vocabulary management policies (more about that to come).

And I still like the title! …even though it’s no longer a true description of the 21st Century RDA.

VIVO Conference Call for Papers, Workshops and Posters Open through March 14 / DuraSpace News

From the VIVO 2016 Conference organizers

Austin, TX  The Seventh Annual VIVO Conference will be held August 17-19, 2016 at the Denver Marriott City Center in Denver, Colorado. The organizers are pleased to issue this call for contributions to the program.

The VIVO Conference creates a unique opportunity for people from around the world to come together to explore ways to use semantic technologies and linked open data to promote scholarly collaboration and research discovery.

NOW AVAILABLE: More Information About the DuraSpace/LYRASIS “Intent to Merge” / DuraSpace News

Austin, TX  Learn more about the planning now underway as a result of the exciting news that the LYRASIS and DuraSpace Boards have voted unanimously in favor of an “intent to merge” the two organizations. In order to provide additional information for our communities DuraSpace and LYRASIS have developed the following information:

A Sister Blog is Born / HangingTogether

nextOCLC has launched a new blog: Next. Focused on what comes next for libraries, librarians, and the communities they serve, it will draw upon OCLC staff with a variety of experiences and perspectives.

First up is Skip Prichard, OCLC CEO,  who discusses “Transforming data into impact”. This was also the topic of an OCLC program at ALA Midwinter of the same title, and you can find links to the slides and video of the event in his post.

Second is yours truly on “Getting started with linked data”. In this short piece I try to make linked data understandable and explain why it is important (making data more machine-actionable) and how it will have an impact on libraries (by making many of workflows more efficient and enhancing the user discovery experience).

Then there is “Learning isn’t learning until you use it” by my Membership and Research colleague Sharon Streams. In it she provides some sage advice for both students and teachers — and aren’t we both at different times? And any post that ends with a story from comedian Louis CK can’t be all bad, right?

These initial posts will be followed up by other colleagues who have some fascinating things to say. I think you will find this blog will be well worth adding to your blog reader or aggregator. If you use Twitter more than blog aggregators for current awareness as I do, follow @OCLC and you’ll be good.

About Roy Tennant

Roy Tennant works on projects related to improving the technological infrastructure of libraries, museums, and archives.

Libraries celebrate 20th anniversary of telecom act / District Dispatch

Libraries are celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the 1996 Telecommunications Act this week!

Libraries are celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the 1996 Telecommunications Act this week!

When the 1996 Telecommunications Act was signed into law, only 28% of libraries provided public internet access. What a dizzying two decades we’ve experienced since then! It’s hard to imagine how #librariestransform without also considering the innovations enabled by the Act and the E-rate program it created.

Libraries were named one of seven major application areas for the National Information Infrastructure in a 1994 taskforce report: “For education and for libraries, all teachers and students in K-12 schools and all public libraries—whether in urban suburban, or rural areas; whether in rich or in poor neighborhoods—need access to the educational and library services carried on the NII. All commercial establishments and all workers must have equal access to the opportunities for electronic commerce and telecommuting provided by the NII. Finally, all citizens must have equal access to government services provided over the NII.”

In his 1997 State of the Union address, President Clinton called for all schools and libraries to be wired by 2000. We came close: 96% of libraries were connected by this time.

Looking back at precursor reports to the Digital Inclusion Survey, we see both how much things have changed—and how some questions and challenges have stubbornly lingered. Fewer and fewer of us likely remember the dial up dial tone, but in 1997 nearly half of all libraries were connected to the internet at speeds of 28.8kbps. (Thankfully, by 2006 we weren’t even asking about this speed category anymore!) The average number of workstations was 1.9, compared to 19 today.

Then, as now, though, libraries reported that their bandwidth and number of public computers available were unable to meet patron demand at least some of the time. Libraries, like the nation as a whole, also continue to see disparities among urban, suburban and rural library connectivity.

Or how about this quote from the 1997 report under the subheading The Endless Upgrade: “One-shot fixes for IT in public libraries is not a viable policy strategy.”

As exhausting as we may sometimes feel at the speed of change, what has been enabled is truly transformative. From connecting rural library patrons to legal counsel via videoconferencing in Maine to creating and uploading original digital content from library patrons nationwide, “The E’s of Libraries®” are powered by broadband.

According to a 2013 Pew Internet Project report, the availability of computers and internet access now rivals book lending and reference expertise as vital library services. Seventy-seven percent of Americans say free access to computers and the internet is a “very important” service of libraries, compared with 80 percent who say borrowing books and access to reference librarians are “very important” services.

America’s libraries owe a debt to Senators Rockefeller, Snowe and Markey for recognizing and investing in the vital roles libraries and schools play in leveraging the internet to support education and lifelong learning. And we also are grateful to the current FCC for upgrading E-rate for today—setting gigabit goals and creating new opportunities to expand fiber connections to even our most geographically far flung. We invite you to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Telecom Act (hashtag #96×20) and share how your #librariestransform with high-speed broadband all this week.

The post Libraries celebrate 20th anniversary of telecom act appeared first on District Dispatch.

Amazon Crawl: part en / Open Library Data Additions

Part en of Amazon crawl..

This item belongs to: data/ol_data.

This item has files of the following types: Data, Data, Metadata, Text

Islandora's Long Tail VIII / Islandora

Time for the 8th installment of the Islandora Long Tail (which contains eight modules!), where we take a look at modules outside of the Islandora release that are being developed around the Islandora community.

Islandora Job

Released by discoverygarden last November, this module utilizes Gearman to facilitate asynchronous and parallel processing of Islandora jobs and allows for Drupal modules to register worker functions and routes received messages from the job server to the appropriate worker functions.  

Islandora GSearcher

Another module from discoverygarden, this one a brand new release. Islandora GSearcher sends created and edited objects to be indexed via the Fedora Generic Search Service on page exit, removing the need for ActiveMQ between Fedora and GSearch.

Islandora UIIG Edit Metadata

To address some perceived issues with the interface currently available for editing metadata, the User Interface Interest Group has started work on this standalone feature module to create an "Edit Metadata" tab. It's currently in the early stages of development, so please suggest use cases, improvements, and refinements.

Islandora Ingest Drag'n'Drop

From Brad Spry at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, this ingest module provides a methodology for creating a drag-and-drop batch ingest workflow powered by a local Linux-based NAS system integrated with an Islandora ingest server. Basically, it gives access to the power of islandora_batch without the need to use terminal commands. You can use it with another fun little tool from UNCC, the Islandora Ingest Indicator, which  is "designed to communicate Islandora ingest status to Archivists; a methodology for integrating Blink (link is external) indicator lights with an Islandora ingest server. We have programmed Blink to glow GREEN for indicating "ready for ingest" and RED for "ingest currently running."More about Blink:





Islandora Usage Stat Callbacks

This offering from the Florida Virtual Campus team and Islandora IR Interest Group convenor Bryan Brown, is a helper module that works with Islandora Usage Stats to take the data it collects and expose it via URL callbacks.

Barnard Collection View

And finally, a custom content type from Ben Rosner at Boston College that allows archivists and curators to create a collection view by way of using a Solr query. Basically, it "aims to mimic certain behaviors from the Islandora Solr Views module, but also permit the user to search, sort, facet, and explore the collection without navigating them away from the page." Ben is looking for feedback and  has provided a couple of screenshots of what it looks like in action:

Islandora Mirador Bookreader

This module implements Mirador open source IIIF image viewer for Islandora Book Solution Pack. It was developed by the team at the University of Toronto, with support from the The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for development of the French Renaissance Paleography website.

Hack Your Calendars? Using Them for More Than Just Appointments / LITA

As librari*s one thing we know, and usually know well, is how to do more with less, or at least without any increase. With this mindset, even the most mundane tools can take on multiple roles. For example, our Calendars

I had a boss near the beginning of my professional career who leveraged their calendar in ways I’d never thought to: as a log for tracking projects, personal ticketing system, and the usual meeting/appointment scheduling. It stuck with me; a handful of years later and I still use that same process.

When I interviewed for my now current job, I was asked how I prioritize and manage what I have to do. My response: with my calendar. I don’t have meetings every hour of every day but I do have a lot of tasks to do and things I’m working on, and having a running log of this is useful, as well as scheduling out blocks of time to actually get my work done.

Using a tool that was designed to organize days and then developed for individual use or network use (sharing of information). Personal calendars kept separate from work calendars, and all used for documenting appointments on our schedules. Why not use them for more than that? Calendar software is designed to intake a reasonable amount of information, customize it as you will.

Things that a Calendar offers that makes this easy

  • Free text Subject/Location fields
  • Start & End times
  • Category options (you decide!) — if you wear multiple hats or are working for multiple teams, this can be incredibly useful
  • Free text Notes field
  • Privacy options

Using a Calendar this way allows you to link together in one point an array of information — people associated with a project, a URL to a google doc, organize based on the hat you’re wearing, document time spent on projects — really helpful for annual reviews. My personal favorite use is noting what you did with a specific project (or problem), this works well when you need a ticketing system setup but just for your personal projects/problems/etc. Things break, it’s my current job to fix them and keep them from breaking (as often) in the future — when I spend 4 hours fixing something, I note it on my calendar and use the notes portion to log running issues, how they were solved, etc.

Using my calendar this way accomplished a handful of things, aside from traditional use:

  • Gave me a decent log for time spent on projects
  • Made my annual review 100% easier
  • Forced me to become more aware of what I was spending my time on
  • Helped me set aside the necessary time needed to work on certain tasks
  • Ward off unnecessary meetings (because Calendar was busy)

If you’re concerned about privacy — check here {link to setting Outlook Calendar privacy} and here {link to setting Google Calendar privacy} for how to manage the privacy settings on Outlook and/or Google.

I challenge you for a week to use your calendar in this fashion, as your own personal work log.

Many thanks to @archivalistic @griffey  @timtomch @slmcdanold @collingsruth @metageeky @sharon_bailey @infosecsherpa @gmcharlt @amyrbrown @redgirl13 for sharing their responses.

033 – A UX Shop for One with Stephen Francoeur / LibUX

Stephen Francoeur is among the first user experience librarians and in this episode he shares his insight about thriving as a one-person UX shop. We talk about organizational buy-in, how best to pitch and communicate UX work, as well as a super interesting tear on imposter syndrome.

You have to be careful who you compare yourself too. If you already have bad feelings about what you can do, your library’s relative poverty compared to other institutions, it’s easy to say “oh screw it, we’ll never be able to keep up with that.” … Maybe we all should be pointing to the under-resourced libraries who manage to be doing a real bang-up job. Stephen Francoeur

Notes

  • 1:15 – The story behind “Advice for UX Shops of One in Libraries
  • 2:23 – Stephen petitioned administration to create a new UX position
  • 4:43 – On organizational buy-in
  • 6:26 – Setting milestones or benchmarks for determining whether investment in UX work has been successful.
  • 11:00 – How receptive are university IT to user-centric design or development requests made by the library?
  • 13:28 – What if a proposal fails?
  • 15:29 – What kind of advice does Stephen have for folks whose administrations aren’t so receptive to user experience design?
  • 17:31 – Whether there’s a preference toward either quantitative or qualitative data.
  • 23:13 – If somebody is new — let’s say they just read Amanda Etches’ and Aaron Schmidt’s book — where do they start?
  • 24:44 – How persuasive is it to stakeholders to look at what other institutions have done with user experience teams?
  • 27:27 – Lasting thoughts

If you like you can download the MP3.

As usual, you support us by helping us get the word out: share a link and take a moment to leave a nice review. Thanks!


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The post 033 – A UX Shop for One with Stephen Francoeur appeared first on LibUX.

Omeka - 2.4 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Package: 
Release Date: 
Thursday, January 21, 2016

Last updated February 7, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 7, 2016.
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We are pleased to announce the release of Omeka 2.4. Although most of the changes are behind the scenes, they contribute to a smoother operation overall.

We have increased the required version of PHP, now at a minimum of 5.3.2. Be sure to check what version of PHP you are running before you upgrade to ensure that you have a supported version. On the opposite end of things, the latest version, PHP 7, is now supported.

AtoM - Access to Memory / FOSS4Lib Updated Packages

Last updated February 7, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 7, 2016.
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AtoM stands for Access to Memory. It is a web-based, open source application for standards-based archival description and access in a multilingual, multi-repository environment.

Key features:

  • Web-based Access your AtoM installation from anywhere you have an internet connection. All core AtoM functions take place via a web browser, with minimal assumptions about end-user requirements for access. No more synching multiple installations on a per-machine basis – install AtoM once, and access it from anywhere.
  • Open source All AtoM code is released under a GNU Affero General Public License (A-GPL 3.0) – giving you the freedom to study, modify, improve, and distribute it. We believe that an important part of access is accessibility, and that everyone should have access to the tools they need to preserve cultural heritage materials. AtoM code is always freely available, and our documentation is also released under a Creative Commons Share-alike license.
  • Standards-based AtoM was originally built with support from the International Council on Archives, to encourage broader international standards adoption. We've built standards-compliance into the core of AtoM, and offer easy-to-use, web-based edit templates that conform to a wide variety of international and national standards.
  • Import/export friendly Your data will never be locked into AtoM – we implement a number of metadata exchange standards to support easy import and export through the AtoM user interface. Currently AtoM supports the following import/export formats: EAD, EAC-CPF, CSV and SKOS.
  • Multilingual All user interface elements and database content can be translated into multiple languages, using the built-in translation interface. The translations are all generously provided by volunteer translators from the AtoM User Community.
  • Multirepository Built for use by a single institution for its own descriptions, or as a multi-repository “union list” (network, portal) accepting descriptions from any number of contributing institutions, AtoM is flexible enough to accommodate your needs.
  • Constantly improving AtoM is an active, dynamic open-source project with a broad user base. We're constantly working with our community to improve the application, and all enhancements are bundled into our public releases. This means that whenever one person contributes, the entire community benefits.
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KohaCon 2016 / FOSS4Lib Upcoming Events

Date: 
Monday, May 30, 2016 - 08:00 to Saturday, June 4, 2016 - 17:00
Supports: 

Last updated February 7, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 7, 2016.
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Join Koha community members for their annual conference from 30 May to 4 June 2016 in Thessaloniki, Greece.

Whether you're just curious about Koha, or have been using it for many years to manage your library, come along and learn more about Koha, the world's first free and open source integrated library management system.

CollectiveAccess - 1.6 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Release Date: 
Friday, January 29, 2016

Last updated February 6, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 6, 2016.
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Version 1.6 of Providence, the CollectiveAccess cataloguing tool, includes many changes including completely rebuilt support for ElasticSearch, a brand new display template parser (faster! better!), lots of bug fixes and many new user-requested features.

You can learn more by reading the release notes for version 1.6.

NOTE: The 1.4 version of Pawtucket (the public web-access application) is NOT compatible with version 1.6 of Providence. A 1.6-compatible release will be available soon.

Koha - 3.22.2, 3.20.8 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Package: 
Release Date: 
Thursday, January 28, 2016

Last updated February 6, 2016. Created by David Nind on February 6, 2016.
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Monthly maintenance releases for Koha.

See the release announcements for the details:

MarcEdit In-Process Work / Terry Reese

Would this be the super bowl edition? Super-duper update? I don’t know – but I am planning an update. Here’s what I’m hoping to accomplish for this update (2/7/2016):

MarcEdit (Windows/Linux)

· Z39.50/SRU Enhancement: Enable user defined profiles and schemas within the SRU configuration. Status: Complete

· Z39.50/SRU Enhancement: Allow SRU searches to be completed as part of the batch tool. Status: ToDo

· Build Links: Updating rules file and updating components to remove the last hardcode elements. Status: Complete

· MarcValidators: Updating rules file Status: Complete

· RDA Bug Fix: 260 conversion – rare occasions when {} are present, you may lose a character Status: Complete

· RDA Enhancement: 260 conversion – cleaned up the code Status: Complete

· Jump List Enhancement: Selections in the jump list remain highlighted Status: Complete

· Script Wizard Bug Fix: Corrected error in the generator that was adding an extra “=” when using the conditional arguments. Status: Complete

MarcEdit Linux

· MarcEdit expects the /home/[username] to be present…when it’s not, the application data is being lost causing problems with the program. Updating this so allow the program to drop back to the application directory/shadow directory. Status: Testing

MarcEdit OSX

· RDA Fix [crash error when encountering invalid data] Status: Testing

· Z39.50 Bug: Raw Queries failing Status: Complete

· Command-line MarcEdit: Porting the Command line version of marcedit (cmarcedit). Status: Testing

· Installer – Installer needs to be changed to allow individual installation of the GUI MarcEdit and the Command-line version of MarcEdit. These two version share the same configuration data Status: ToDo

–tr

Identify outliers: Building a user interface feature. / Mark E. Phillips

Background:

At work we are deep in the process of redesigning the user interface of The Portal to Texas History.  We have a great team in our User Interfaces Unit that I get to work with on this project,  they do the majority of the work and I have been a data gatherer to identify problems that come up in our data.

As we are getting closer to our beta release we had a new feature we wanted to add to the collection and partner detail pages.  Below is the current mockup of this detail page.

Collection Detail Mockup

Collection Detail Mockup

Quite long isn’t it.  We are trying something out (more on that later)

The feature that we are wanting more data for is the “At a Glance” feature. This feature displays the number of unique values (cardinality) of a specific field for the collection or partner.

At A Glance Detail

At A Glance Detail

So in the example above we show that there are 132 items, 1 type, 3 titles, 1 contributing partner, 3 decades and so on.

All this is pretty straight forward so far.

The next thing we want to do is to highlight a box in a different color if it is a value that is different from the normal.  For example if the average collection has three different languages present then we might want to highlight the language box for a collection that had ten languages represented.

There are several ways that we can do this, first off we just made some guesses and coded in values that we felt would be good thresholds.  I wanted to see if we could figure out a way to identify these thresholds based on the data in the collection itself.  That’s what this blog post is going to try to do.

Getting the data:

First of all I need to pull out my “I couldn’t even play an extra who stands around befuddled on a show about statistics, let alone play a stats person on TV” card (wow I really tried with that one) so if you notice horribly incorrect assumptions or processes here, 1. you are probably right, and 2. please contact me so I can figure out what I’m doing wrong.

That being said here we go.

We currently have 453 unique collections in The Portal to Texas History.  For each of these collections we are interested in calculating the cardinality of the following fields

  • Number of items
  • Number of languages
  • Number of series titles
  • Number of resource types
  • Number of countries
  • Number of counties
  • Number of states
  • Number of decades
  • Number of partner institutions
  • Number of items uses

To calculate these numbers I pulled data from our trusty Solr index making use of the stats component and the stats.calcdistinct=true option.  Using this I am able to get the number of unique values for each of the fields listed above.

Now that I have the numbers from Solr I can format them into lists of the unique values and start figuring out how I want to define a threshold.

Defining a threshold:

For this first attempt I decided to try and define the threshold using the Tukey Method that uses the Interquartile Range (IQR).  If you never took any statistics courses (I was a music major so not much math for me) I found this post Highlighting Outliers in your Data with the Tukey Method extremely helpful.

First off I used the handy st program to get an overview of the data that I was going to be working with.

Field N min q1 median q3 max sum mean stddev stderr
items 453 1 98 303 1,873 315,227 1,229,840 2,714.87 16,270.90 764.47
language 453 1 1 1 2 17 802 1.77 1.77 0.08
titles 453 0 1 1 3 955 5,082 11.22 65.12 3.06
type 453 1 1 1 2 22 1,152 2.54 3.77 0.18
country 453 0 1 1 1 73 1,047 2.31 5.59 0.26
county 453 0 1 1 7 445 8,901 19.65 53.98 2.54
states 453 0 1 1 2 50 1,902 4.20 8.43 0.40
decade 453 0 2 5 9 49 2,759 6.09 5.20 0.24
partner 453 1 1 1 1 103 1,007 2.22 7.22 0.34
uses 453 5 3,960 17,539 61,575 10,899,567 50,751,800 112,035 556,190 26,132.1

With the q1 and q3 values we can calculate the IQR for the field and then using the standard 1.5 multiplier or the extreme multiplier of 3 we can add this value back to the q3 value and find our upper threshold.

So for the county field

7 - 1 = 6
6 * 1.5 = 9
7 + 9 = 16

This gives us the threshold values in the table below.

Field Threshold – 1.5 Threshold – 3
items 4,536 7,198
language 4 5
titles 6 9
type 4 5
country 1 1
county 16 25
states 4 5
decade 20 30
partner 1 1
uses 147,997 234,420

Moving forward we can use these thresholds as a way of saying “this field stands out in this collection from other collections”  and make the box in the “At a Glance” feature a different color.

If you have questions or comments about this post,  please let me know via Twitter.

On The Road Again / Equinox Software

2194

It’s a new year, which means it’s time for the Equinox team to hit the road and attend some Spring conferences!  Here’s where we’ll be for the next few months:

  • Code4Lib Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania March 7-10, 2016
    • We love Pennsylvania, this much is true.  Equinox is proud to be co-sponsoring childcare for this event.  Mike Rylander and Mary Jinglewski will be attending the Code4Lib Conference and they’re excited to learn some new things and mingle with the library tech folk.  If you’d like to meet up with either of them, please let us know!
  • Public Library Association (PLA) Conference in Denver, Colorado April 5-9, 2016
    • Equinox is looking forward to exhibiting at PLA this year in beautiful Denver, Colorado.  The team will be ready and waiting in Booth #408.  We can’t wait to meet with you to talk about Open Source solutions for your library!  
  • Evergreen Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina April 20-23, 2016
    • Our very favorite conference of the year!  We love getting together with Evergreen users and sharing our experience and knowledge.  Equinox is not only a Platinum Sponsor for this event; we are also sponsoring the Development Hackfest. The Equinox team will be involved in fourteen separate talks throughout the conference spanning a wide variety of topics.

There are a lot of exciting things in store for 2016 and we can’t wait to share them with you.  Whether in an exhibit booth or over a beer, we love to talk.  Hope to see you all soon!

Quid Pro Quo: Librarians and Vendors / LITA

I joked with a colleague recently that I need to get over my issue with vendors giving me sales pitches during phone calls and meetings. We had a good laugh since a major responsibility of my job as Assistant Director is to meet with vendors and learn about products that will enhance the patron experience at my library. As the point of contact I’m going to be the person the vendor calls and I’m going to be the person to whom the vendor pitches stuff.

The point was that sometimes it would be nice to have a quiet day so you could get back to the other vendors who have contacted you or maybe actually implement some of the tech you acquired from a vendor—he says as he looks wistfully at a pile of equipment in his office that should out in the public’s hands.

Just last month my fellow blogger Bill Dueber talked about the importance of negotiating with vendors in his post “There’s a Reason There’s a Specialized Degree.” Because I work hand in hand with vendors on an almost daily basis there’s a number of things I try to do to hold up my end of the bargain. There’s an article from 2010 on LIS Careers that talks about the Librarian/Vendor relationship. While not everything is relevant, it does have some good information in it (some of which I’ve pulled into this post).

  • Pay bills on time
  • Reply to calls/emails in a timely manner
  • Be clear about timelines
  • Say no if the answer’s no
  • Be congenial

I find it helps if I think of the vendors as my patrons. How would I treat a member of the public? Would I wait weeks before answering a reference question that came in via email? We’re all busy so not responding the same day to a vendor is probably ok but going more than a day or two is not a good idea. If I don’t want the vendor emailing me every other day I need to communicate. And if things are really busy or something’s come up I need to be clear with the vendor that I won’t be able to look at a new product until next week or second quarter, whichever the case may be.

I can’t speak for other libraries, but our board approves bills so we basically do a big swath of payments once a month. The more time it takes me to sign off on a bill and hand it over to finance, the longer it’ll take for that bill to get processed. Trust me, the last thing you want is for your computer reservation license to expire so you end up scrambling fifteen minutes before you open the doors trying to get a new license installed.

If I’m doing my part, then there are some things I expect in return from vendors (this list will look similar):

  • Send bills in a timely manner
  • Don’t send email/call every other day
  • Take no for an answer
  • Don’t trash competitors

It’s very frustrating to me when a vendor keeps pushing a product after I’ve said no. I know the vendor’s job is to find customers but sometimes it can be beneficial to lay off the sales pitch and save it for another visit. Only once have I actually had to interrupt a vendor several times during a phone call to tell them that I no longer will be doing business with them and do not want them to call me any more.

It’s one thing to say that your product does something no one else’s does or to claim that your product works better than a competitor. That’s business. But I’ve sat in vendor demos where the person spent so much time trashing another company that I had no idea what their product did. Also, sometimes I use similar products from different companies because they’re different and I can reach more patrons with a wider variety of services. This is particularly true with technology. We provide desktops, laptops, and WiFi for our customers because different people like to use different types of computers. It’s not always economically feasible to provide such a variety for every service, but we try to do it when we can.

I also have a number of things I’ll put on a wish list for vendors.

  • Look over meeting agendas and minutes
  • Check our website for services we’re offering
  • Provide a demo that you can leave behind
  • Try to not show up unannounced; at least call first

It shocks me when vendors ask what our budget is on a project, especially something for which we’ve done an RFP. This might pertain more to public libraries, but everything we do is public record. You can find the budget meetings on the city website and see exactly how much was approved. That attention to detail goes a long way towards showing me how you’ll handle our relationship.

Maybe we use iPads in our programming. Maybe we just replaced our selfchecks. Perhaps we already have a 3D printer. Maybe the head of our children’s department took part in an iLead program with the focus on helping parents pick early literacy apps for their children. Our website is, for all intents and purposes, an ever-changing document. As such, we make every effort to keep our services up to date and tout what our staff is doing. This can help you frame your sales pitch to us. You might not want to downplay iPads when we’ve been having success with them.

Where technology’s concerned, being able to leave a demo device with me is huge. It’s not always possible, but any amount of time I get where I can see how it would fit into our workflow helps us say yes or no. Sometimes I have a question that only comes up because I’ve spent some time using a device.

If you’re seeing a customer in Milwaukee, my library is not that far away and it makes sense that you can drop in and see how things are going. Totally fine. If you can, call first. The number of times I’ve missed a vendor because I didn’t know they were coming are more numerous than I’d like. But I can’t be available if I don’t know I should.

I get it. Companies are getting bigger through acquisitions, people’s sales areas are changing, the volume of customers goes up and up, and there’s still the same number of hours in the day. But there are vendors who do the things I mention above, and they’ll get my attention first.

What are some of the things you would like to see vendors do?

Studies in crosshatching / Patrick Hochstenbach

Filed under: portaits, Sketchbook Tagged: art, crosshatching, hatching, illustration, ink, pen, rotring, sketch, sketchbook

2016 Election Slate / LITA

The LITA Board is pleased to announce the following slate of candidates for the 2016 spring election:

Candidates for Vice-President/President-Elect

Candidates for Director-at-Large, 2 elected for a 3-year term

Candidates for LITA Councilor, 1 elected for a 3-year term

View bios and statements for more information about the candidates. Voting in the 2016 ALA election will begin on March 25 and close on April 22. Election results will be announced on April 29. Note that eligible members will be sent their voting credentials via email over a three-day period, March 15-18. Check the main ALA website for information about the general ALA election.

The slate was recommended by the LITA Nominating Committee: Michelle Frisque (Chair), Galen Charlton, and Dale Poulter. The Board thanks the Nominating Committee for all of their work. Be sure to thank the candidates for agreeing to serve and the Nominating Committee for developing the slate. Best wishes to all.

Fusion plus Solr Suggesters for More Search, Less Typing / SearchHub

The Solr suggester search component was previously discussed on this blog in the post Solr Suggester by Solr committer Erick Erickson. This post shows how to add a Solr suggester component to a Fusion query pipeline in order to provide the kind of auto-complete functionality expected from a modern search app.

By auto-complete we mean the familiar set of drop-downs under a search box which suggest likely words or phrases as you type. This is easy to do using Solr’s FST-based suggesters. FST stands for “Finite-State Transducer”. The underlying mechanics of an FST allow for near-matches on the input, which means that auto-suggest will work even when the inputs contain typos or misspellings. Solr’s suggesters return the entire field for a match, making it possible to suggest whole titles or phrases based on just the first few letters.

The data in this example is derived from data collected by the Movie Tweetings project between 2013 and 2016. A subset of that data has been processed into a CSV file consisting of a row per film, with columns for a unique id, the title, release year, number of tweets found, and average rating across tweets:

id,title,year,ct,rating
...
0076759,Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope,1977,252,8.61111111111111
0080684,Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back,1980,197,8.82233502538071
0086190,Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi,1983,178,8.404494382022472
1185834,Star Wars: The Clone Wars,2008,11,6.090909090909091
2488496,Star Wars: The Force Awakens,2015,1281,8.555815768930524
...

After loading this data into Fusion, I have a collection named “movies”. The following screenshot shows the result of a search on the term “Star Wars”.

img

The search results panel shows the results for the search query “Star Wars”, sorted by relevancy (i.e. best-match). Although all of the movie titles contain the words “Star Wars”, they don’t all begin with it. If you’re trying to add auto-complete to a search box, the results should complete the initial query. In the above example, the second best-match isn’t a match at all in an auto-complete scenario. Instead of using the default Solr “select” handler to do the search, we can plug in an FST suggester, which will give us not just auto-complete, but fuzzy autocomplete, through the magic of FSTs.

Fusion collections are Solr collections which are managed by Fusion. To add a Lucene/Solr suggester to the “movies” collection requires editing the Solr config files according to the procedure outlined in the “Solr Suggester” blogpost:

  • define a field with the correct analyzer in file schema.xml
  • define a request handler for auto-complete in file solrConfig.xml

Fusion sends search requests to Solr via the Fusion query pipeline Solr query stage, therefore it’s also necessary to configure a Solr query stage to access the newly configured suggest request handler.

The Fusion UI provides tools for editing Solr configuration files. These are available from the “Configuration” section on the collection “Home” panel, seen on the left-hand side column in the above screenshot. Clicking on the “Solr Config” option shows the set of available configuration files for collection “movies”:

img

Clicking on file schema.xml opens an edit window. I need to define a field type and specify how the contents of this field will be analyzed when creating the FSTs used by the suggester component. To do this, I copy in the field definition from the very end of the “Solr Suggester” blogpost:

<!-- text field for suggestions, taken from:  https://lucidworks.com/blog/2015/03/04/solr-suggester/ -->
<fieldType name="suggestTypeLc" class="solr.TextField" positionIncrementGap="100">
  <analyzer>
    <charFilter class="solr.PatternReplaceCharFilterFactory" pattern="[^a-zA-Z0-9]" replacement=" " />
    <tokenizer class="solr.WhitespaceTokenizerFactory"/>
    <filter class="solr.LowerCaseFilterFactory"/>
  </analyzer>
</fieldType>

img

After clicking the “Save” button, the Fusion UI displays the notification message: “File contents saved and collection reloaded.”

Next I edit the solrConfig.xml file to add in definition for the suggester search component and corresponding request handler:

img

This configuration is based on Solr’s “techproducts” example, based on the Suggester configuration docs in the Solr Reference Guide. The suggest search component is configured with parameters for the name, and implementation type of the suggester, the field to be analyzed, the analyzer used. We also specify the optional parameter weightField which, if present, returns an additional document field that can be used for sorting.

For this example, the field parameter is movie_title_txt. The suggestAnalyzerFieldType specifies that the movie title text will be analyzed using the analyzer defined for field type suggestTypeLc, (added to the schema.xml file for the “movies” collection in the previous step). Each movie has two kinds of ratings information: average rating and count (total number of ratings from tweets). Here, the average rating value is specified:

<searchComponent name="suggest" class="solr.SuggestComponent">
    <lst name="suggester">
      <str name="name">mySuggester</str>
      <str name="lookupImpl">FuzzyLookupFactory</str>
      <str name="dictionaryImpl">DocumentDictionaryFactory</str>
      <str name="storeDir">suggester_fuzzy_dir</str>
      <str name="field">movie_title_txt</str>
      <str name="weightField">rating_tf</str>
      <str name="suggestAnalyzerFieldType">suggestTypeLc</str>
    </lst>
</searchComponent>

For details, see Solr wiki Suggester seachComponent section.

The request handler configuration specifies the request path and the search component:

<requestHandler name="/suggest" class="solr.SearchHandler">
    <lst name="defaults">
      <str name="suggest">true</str>
      <str name="suggest.count">10</str>
      <str name="suggest.dictionary">mySuggester</str>
    </lst>
    <arr name="components">
      <str>suggest</str>
    </arr>
</requestHandler>

For details, see Solr wiki Suggester requestHandler section.

After each file edit, the collection configs are saved and the collection is reloaded so that changes take effect immediately.

Finally, I configure a pipeline with a Solr query stage which permits access to the suggest request handler:

img

Lacking a UI with the proper JS magic to show autocomplete in action, we’ll just send a request to the endpoint, to see how the suggest request handler differs from the default select request handler. Since I’m already logged into the Fusion UI, from the browser location bar, I request the URL:

http://localhost:8764/api/apollo/query-pipelines/movies-default/collections/movies/suggest?q=Star%20Wars

img

The power of the FST suggester lies in its robustness. Misspelled and/or incomplete queries still produce good results. This search also returns the same results as the above search:

http://localhost:8764/api/apollo/query-pipelines/movies-default/collections/movies/suggest?q=Strr%20Wa

Under the hood, Lucidworks Fusion is Solr-powered, and under the Solr hood, Solr is Lucene-powered. That’s a lot of power. The autocompletion for “Solr-fu” is “Solr-Fusion”!

The post Fusion plus Solr Suggesters for More Search, Less Typing appeared first on Lucidworks.com.

Lobstometre Rising / Islandora

Our friendly fundraising lobster, the Lobstometre (r before e because we are Canadian like that) has gotten another bump this week, thanks to new Collaborator Florida Virtual Campus, a renewed partnership with LYRASIS, and support from Individual Members totalling more than $1500. We are more than halfway to our minimum fundraising goal and would like to say a very big 'THANK YOU!" to the supporters who have gotten us here. 

what I’ve been up to / Andromeda Yelton

Wow, it turns out if you have a ton of clients materialize over the fall, you have no time to tell the internet about them!

So here’s what I’m up to:

  1. Running for LITA president! Yup. If you’re a member in good standing of LITA, you’ll get your ballot in March, and I’d really appreciate your vote. Stay tuned for my campaign page and official LITA candidate profile.
  2. tiny adorable computer

  3. Coding for Measure the Future! This consists largely in arguing with Griffey about privacy. And also being, as far as I can tell, the first person on the internet to have gotten a Django app running on an Intel Edison, a tiny adorable computer that fits in the palm of my hand.
  4. Coding for Wikimedia! So…that happened. I’m doing an internal project for The Wikipedia Library, improving the usability of their journal access application system (and creating the kernel of a system that, over time, might be able to open up lots more possibilities for them).
  5. Coding for CustomFit! We’ve debuted straight-shaped sweaters along with our original hourglass (a coding process which was not unlike rebuilding an airplane in flight), so now you can make sweaters for people who may not want normatively-feminine garments. Yay! Also I implemented a complete site redesign last fall (if you’re wondering, “can Andromeda take a 12-page PDF exported from Photoshop, translate it into CSS, and rewrite several hundred templates accordingly”, the answer turns out to be yes). Anyway, if you’d been thinking of taking the CustomFit plunge but not gotten around to it yet, please go check that out – there’s a ton of great new stuff, and more on the way.
  6. Keynoting LibTechConf! My talk will be called “The Architecture of Values”, and it’ll be about how our code does (or, spoiler alert, doesn’t) implement our library values. Also the other keynoter is Safiya Noble and I am fangirling pretty hard about that.

pycounter - 0.11.1 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Package: 
Release Date: 
Monday, January 25, 2016

Last updated February 4, 2016. Created by wooble on February 4, 2016.
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Now includes a bare-bones SUSHI client executable, better support for DB1, BR1, BR2 reports, and the ability to output COUNTER 4 TSV reports (from either programatically-built reports, reports parsed from other formats, or reports fetched with SUSHI)

Call for Proposals, LITA education webinars and web courses / LITA

What library technology topic are you passionate about?
Have something to teach?

The Library Information Technology Association (LITA) Education Committee invites you to share your expertise with a national audience! For years, LITA has offered online learning programs on technology-related topics of interest to LITA Members and wider American Library Association audience.

We deliberately seek and strongly encourage submissions from underrepresented groups, such as women, people of color, and the LGBT community

Submit a proposal by February 29th to teach a webinar, webinar series, or online course for Summer/Fall 2016.

All topics related to the intersection of technology and libraries are welcomed. Possible topics include:

  • helpkeyboardResearch Data ManagementCC by www.gotcredit.com
  • Supporting Digital Scholarship
  • Technology and Kids or Teens
  • Managing Technical Projects
  • Creating/Supporting Library Makerspaces, or other Creative/Production Spaces
  • Data-Informed Librarianship
  • Diversity and Technology
  • Accessibility Issues and Library Technology
  • Technology in Special Libraries
  • Ethics of Library Technology (e.g., Privacy Concerns, Social Justice Implications)
  • Library/Learning Management System Integrations
  • Technocentric Library Spaces
  • Social Media Engagement
  • Intro to… GitHub, Productivity Tools, Visualization/Data Analysis, etc.

Instructors receive a $500 honorarium for an online course or $100-150 for webinars, split among instructors. For more information, access the online submission form. Check out our list of current and past course offerings to see what topics have been covered recently. We’re looking forward to a slate of compelling and useful online education programs this year!

LITA Education Committee.

Questions or Comments?

For questions or comments related to teaching for LITA, contact LITA at (312) 280-4268 or Mark Beatty, mbeatty@ala.org

Jobs in Information Technology: February 3, 2016 / LITA

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week:

City of Sierra Madre, Library Services Director, Sierra Madre, CA

Concordia College, Systems and Web Services Librarian, Moorhead, MN

Depaul University Library, Digital Services Coordinator, Chicago, IL

Loyola / Notre Dame Library, Digital Services Coordinator, Baltimore, MD

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, Metadata Librarian, Washington, DC

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Federal Dollars on the Line for State Library Programs / District Dispatch

Ask Your Members of Congress to Help Bring the Bucks Home while They’re at Home

It’s “appropriations” season again in Washington. That time every year when the President submits a budget to Congress and, in theory at least, Congress drafts and votes on bills to federally fund everything from llama farming to, well, libraries. Nevermind where llamas get their cash, but libraries in every state in the nation benefit from funds allocated by Congress for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA), the only federally funded program specifically dedicated to supporting libraries. Last year, libraries received just under $183 million in LSTA funding, about $156 million of which flowed to states as matching grants.

Stuffed llama stands on a pile of money.

Source: https://twitter.com/ecuadorianllama

Neither llama farmers nor libraries, however, benefit from federal funding without considerable convincing. That’s where you and your Members of Congress come in.

Starting in mid-February, individual Members of Congress will start signing letters addressed to their influential colleagues who sit on the powerful Appropriations Committees in both chambers of Congress. Those letters will ask the Committee to provide specific dollar amounts for specific programs, LSTA included. The math is easy: the more Members of Congress who sign the “Dear Appropriator” letter asking for significant LSTA funding, the better the odds of that money actually being awarded by the Appropriations Committee and eventually flowing to your state. Similarly, the more librarians and library supporters who ask their Members of Congress to sign that LSTA Dear Appropriator letter, the better the odds that LSTA will be funded and funded well.

So, how can you help? That’s easy, too.

We are asking library supporters to reach out and request a meeting with their Representatives and Senators while Members of Congress are home for the Presidents’ Day recess from February 15 – 20. The message to deliver at these meetings couldn’t be more simple or straightforward: “Please add your name to the LSTA Dear Appropriator letter.”

Members of Congress may be considering signing letters in support of other programs, but they will most likely sign the LSTA letter if they hear from constituents back home … or better yet, if they can visit your library and see the positive impact LSTA-funded programs are having on their constituents.

Please take a moment this week to reach out to your Member of Congress’ and Senators’ offices and request a meeting with the Member or his or her “District Director” anytime during the week of February 15 to discuss LSTA and the Dear Appropriator letters. Once you’ve met, please let the Washington Office know how it went and we will follow up on your great work.

Your Representative and Senators work for you and will love hearing about all of the great things that LSTA money does for their constituents. They’ll be happy to hear from you! Please, set that Presidents’ Week meeting today.

The post Federal Dollars on the Line for State Library Programs appeared first on District Dispatch.

VuFind - 2.5.2 / FOSS4Lib Recent Releases

Package: 
Release Date: 
Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Last updated February 3, 2016. Created by Demian Katz on February 3, 2016.
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Minor security release.

STAPLR DisPerSion / William Denton

Next Tuesday STAPLR + a live feed of anonymous desk activity data + Twitter streams will be the basis for a performance by the students in Doug Van Nort’s class DATT 3200, Performing Telepresence, which will take place simultaneously in the DisPerSion Lab and all the branches of York University Libraries. You can watch, listen, participate and help perform from anywhere in the world. If you’re in or near Toronto, you can experience it in person.

Tuesday 9 February 2016, 3:30 – 5:30 pm

William Denton (York University Libraries)

Doug Van Nort (School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design)

and the

Students of DATT 3200 Performing Telepresence

Re­imagine the real­time streams emanating from, to and about York University Libraries in its physical and virtual homes. Featuring:

STAPLR

William Denton’s sonification of YUL reference desks (listen remotely at staplr.org)

and

Sound, Light and Text Instruments

created by Van Nort and students, that react to YUL reference data and to Twitter feeds (@yorkulibraries, @FrostLibrary, @BronfmanLibrary, @ScottLibrary, @SteacieLibrary, @dispersion_lab).

Performed between all branches of York University Libraries (Bronfman, Frost, Maps, Scott, SMIL, Steacie) and the DisPerSion Lab by DATT students, using Twitter as their interface.

Experience the immersive version at the DisPerSion Lab (334 Centre for Fine Arts),

Watch/Listen to the virtual feed (video, audio, Twitter) at dispersionlab.org

Participate and help perform the piece by tweeting @dispersion_lab

Happy 10th Birthday Apache Solr! / SearchHub

January marked the tenth anniversary of Yonik Seeley’s fateful post on the Apache incubator listserv back in January of 2006:

Hello Incubator PMC folks, I would like to propose a new Apache project named Solr.

http://wiki.apache.org/incubator/SolrProposal

The project is being proposed as a sub-project of Lucene, and the Lucene PMC has agreed to be the sponsor.

-Yonik

Seeley also included the full proposal which includes cultivating an active open source community as a top priority with Doug Cutting as the sponsor and the first three initial committers: Seeley himself, Bill Au, and Chris “Hoss” Hostetter. And here we are, 10 years later and Apache Solr is the most deployed open source search technology on the planet with thousands of production instances. 

We’ve updated our ‘history of Solr’ infographic with the results of our developer survey from the fall. More survey results on the way.

Apache_Solr_History_Infographic

Learn more about Lucidworks Fusion, our Solr-powered application development platform for building intelligent search-driven apps.

The post Happy 10th Birthday Apache Solr! appeared first on Lucidworks.com.

Always read the fine print / David Rosenthal

When Amazon announced Glacier I took the trouble to read their pricing information carefully and wrote:
Because the cost penalties for peak access to storage and for small requests are so large ..., if Glacier is not to be significantly more expensive than local storage in the long term preservation systems that use it will need to be carefully designed to rate-limit accesses and to request data in large chunks.
Now, 40 months later, Simon Sharwood at The Register reports that people who didn't pay attention are shocked that using Glacier can cost more in a month than enough disk to store the data 60 times over:
Last week, a chap named Mario Karpinnen took to Medium with a tale of how downloading 60GB of data from Amazon Web Services' archive-grade Glacier service cost him a whopping US$158.

Karpinnen went into the fine print of Glacier pricing and found that the service takes your peak download rate, multiplies the number of gigabytes downloaded in your busiest hour for the month and applies it to every hour of the whole month. His peak data retrieval rate of 15.2GB an hour was therefore multiplied by the $0.011 per gigabyte charged for downloads from Glacier. And then multiplied by the 744 hours in January. Once tax and bandwidth charges were added, in came the bill for $158.
Karpinnen's post is a cautionary tale for Glacier believers, but the real problem is he didn't look the gift horse in the mouth:
But doing the math (and factoring in VAT and the higher prices at AWS’s Irish region), I had the choice of either paying almost $10 a month for the simplicity of S3 or just 87¢/mo for what was essentially the same thing,
He should have asked himself how Amazon could afford to sell "essentially the same thing" for one-tenth the price. Why wouldn't all their customers switch? I asked myself this in my post on the Glacier announcement:
In order to have a competitive product in the the long-term storage market Amazon had to develop a new one, with a different pricing model. S3 wasn't competitive.
As Sharwood says:
Karpinnen's post and Oracle's carping about what it says about AWS both suggest a simple moral to this story: cloud looks simple, but isn't, and buyer beware applies every bit as much as it does for any other product or service.
The fine print was written by the vendor's lawyers. They are not your friends.

Self-Publishing, Authorpreneurs & Libraries / LITA

“Self-publishing represents the future of literature.  Its willingness to experiment, it’s greater speed to market, it’s quicker communication with the audience, its greater rewards and creative control for creators, its increasing popularity all augur for the continued expansion of self-publishing and its place as the likely wellspring for our best new works” (LaRue, 2014, para. 13).

The self-publishing movement is alive and well in public libraries across the nation, especially within the fiction genre. In a recent American Libraries magazine article, “Solving the Self-Published Puzzle,” Langraf lists several public libraries acquiring self-published books to develop their collections with local authors and with works of regional interest.

I think of how this movement will grow among other types of library communities, and most importantly, how self-publishing technology has made it possible for all of us to publish and access high-quality digital and print resources. Will academic librarians assist teaching faculty to publish their own digital textbooks? Will creative writing classes add an eBook publishing component into their curriculum?  Will special library collections, archives, or museums use these online platforms to create wonderful monographs or documents of archived material that will reach a greater audience?  The possibilities are endless.

What was most interesting to me while reading the American Libraries piece is that libraries are including independent publishing advice and guidance workshops in their makerspace areas.  The freedom of becoming a self-published author comes with a to-do-list: cover illustrations, ebook format conversion (EPUB, MOBI, etc.), online editing, metadata, price and royalties, contracts, and creation of website and social media outlets for marketing purposes.  These are a few of the many things to think about.  Much needs to be learned and librarians can become proficient in these areas in order to create their own creative projects or assist patrons in self-publishing.  It is refreshing to see that an author can trespass the gatekeepers of publishing to get their project published and that our profession can make this phenomenon more accessible to our communities.

We can convert writers into authorpreneurs, a term I recently discovered (McCartney, 2015).  The speed of publishing is awesome – no waiting.  A project can appeal to a particular audience not accessible through traditional routes of publishing. If the author is interested, indie writers have platforms to get picked up by renowned publishing houses and agents.  Traditional authors may also make a plunge into self-publishing.  The attraction for librarians is that the published books can be distributed through platforms like Overdrive currently being used by libraries.  In addition, eBook publishing sites make it possible for users to view their item on several mobile devices through apps or eReaders.  The file type conversions to become readable in all devices are done by many of the organizations listed below.

I have recently become fascinated by the self-publishing movement and plan to write more about the ongoing developments.  I have yet to read my first self-published book and plan to do so soon.  For now, I leave you with some resources that may help you begin thinking about how to use self-publishing to serve your communities and create innovative ways to expand your library services.

Resources

bookworks
BookWorks
The Self Publishers Association
https://www.bookworks.com/


52novels
52 Novels: 
https://www.52novels.com/

Amazon Resources:
createspace
CreateSpace:

https://www.createspace.com/
Tools and services that help you complete your book and make it available to millions of potential readers

kdp
Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP)

https://kdp.amazon.com/

kdpdselect
KDP EDU: https://kdp.amazon.com/edu
Textbook publishing

KDP Kids: https://kdp.amazon.com/kids
Children Books

and many more genres…

ibooks
Apple iBookstore

http://www.apple.com/ibooks/

applepages
Apple Pages

http://www.apple.com/mac/pages/

nookpress
Barnes & Nobles Nook Press

https://www.nookpress.com/

BookBaby-logo1BookBaby: https://www.bookbaby.com/

bookdesigner
The Book Designer: 
http://www.thebookdesigner.com/

bowker
Bowker: http://www.bowker.com/

calibre
Calibre: 
http://calibre-ebook.com/

ebookarchitects
EBook Architects: 
http://ebookarchitects.com/

inscribe_digital
Inscribe Digital: 
http://www.inscribedigital.com

jutoh
Jutoh: 
http://www.jutoh.com/

kobo_writinglife
Kobo Writing Life: 
https://www.kobo.com/writinglife

ingramspark
Ingram Spark: 
https://www.ingramspark.com/

leanpub
Leanpub: 
https://leanpub.com/

lulu
Lulu: 
https://www.lulu.com/

pressbooks
PressBooks: 
http://pressbooks.com/

gutenbergpress
Project Gutenberg Self-Publishing Press: 
http://self.gutenberg.org/

iconscribd
Scribd: 
https://www.scribd.com

scrivener
Scrivner: 
https://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php

sigil
Sigil: 
https://code.google.com/p/sigil/

smashwords
Smashwords: 
https://www.smashwords.com/

wattpad
Wattpad: 
https://www.wattpad.com/

Indie Title Reviews
Libraries struggle with indie market collection development.  It is not readily available in the usual book review sources heavily used for mainstream titles– so the librarian is left to search within blogs and other social media outlets to learn of new worthy titles for purchase.  Please find a list of self-publishing collection development resources for libraries/readers below.biblioboard
Biblioboard: 
https://www.biblioboard.com/

ebooksareforever
eBooksAreForever: 
http://ebooksareforever.com/

goodreads
GoodReads: 
https://www.goodreads.com/

indie
Indie Reader: 
http://indiereader.com/

pwselect
PW Select: 
http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/authors/pw-select/

Selfe
Self-e: http://self-e.libraryjournal.com/

spr
SelfPublishing Review: 
http://www.selfpublishingreview.com/

References

Friedman, J. (2015). Helping indie authors succeed: What inde authors need to know about the library market. Publishers Weekly, 262(39), 52.

Gross, A. (2015). Digital winners in the bay area. Publishers Weekly, 262(24), 18-20.

Landgraf, G. (October 30, 2015). Solving the self-published puzzle. American Libraries Magazine. Retrieved from http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/2015/10/30/solving-the-self-published-puzzle/

LaRue, J. (2015). From maker to mission. Library Journal, 140(16), 41.

LaRue, J. (2014). The next wave of tech change. Library Journal, 139(16), 47.

McCartney, J. (2015). A look ahead to self-publishing in 2015. Publishers Weekly, 262(3), 36-38.

Peltier-Davis, C. A. (2015). The cybrarian’s web 2: An a-z guide to free social media tools, apps, and other resources. Medford, NJ: Information Today.

Palmer, A. (2014). What every Indie author needs to know about e-books. Publishers Weekly, 261(7), 52-54.

Quint, B. (2015). So you want to be published. Information Today, 32(2), 17.

Scardilli, B. (2015). Public libraries embrace self-publishing services. Information Today, 32(5), 1-26.

Staley, L. (2015). Leading self-publishing efforts in communities. American Libraries, 46(1/2), 18-19.