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DPLA: Board Governance Committee Open Call: March 11, 2015, 1:00 PM Eastern

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 15:40

The DPLA Board of Directors’ Governance Committee will hold a conference call on Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 1:00 PM Eastern. The call is open to the public.

Agenda

Public session

  • Rethinking DPLA open committee calls
  • Questions/comments from the public

Executive session

  • Update and next steps for Board Nominating Committee
Dial-in

District Dispatch: 3D printing technologies in libraries: intellectual property right issues

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 15:23

Photo by Subhashish Panigrahi

Join us for our next installment of CopyTalk, March 5th at 2pm Eastern Time. In the past the use of photocopy, printing, scanning and related technologies in libraries raised copyright issues alone. A new technology is making its way into libraries; 3D printing technology now allows a patron to create (print) three-dimensional objects as well. Patrons can now “print” entire mechanical devices or components of other devices from something as simple as a corkscrew to parts of a prosthetic body part. Objects of all sorts can be created in library maker spaces. These technologies raise not only copyright issues but now patent including design patents, trademark including trade dress as well as copyright issues. Learn about the legal issues involved and how the library can protect itself from liability when patrons use these technologies in library spaces and raise awareness of such issues among patrons.

Speakers

Professor Tomas Lipinski completed his Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Marquette University Law School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, received the Master of Laws (LL.M.) from The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, Illinois, and the Ph.D. from the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Mr. Lipinski has worked in a variety of legal settings including the private, public and non-profit sectors. He is the author of numerous articles and book chapters and has been a visiting professor in summers at the University of Pretoria-School of Information Technology (Pretoria, South Africa) and at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Professor Lipinski was the first named member of the Global Law Faculty, Faculty of Law, University of Leuven (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven), Belgium, in Fall of 2006 where he continues to lecture annually at its Centers for Intellectual Property Rights and Interdisciplinary Center for Law and ICT. In October he returned to the University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee to serve as Professor and Dean of its i-School, the School of Information Studies. He serves as a member of the IFLA Copyright and other Legal Matters Committee and an IFLA delegate to the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Other Rights. His current project is a book on legal issues in maker spaces in libraries with Mary Minow and Gretchen McCord that should be available this summer or fall.

As OITP’s Information Policy Analyst, Charlie Wapner provides analytical, organizational, and logistical support to the ALA Washington Office as part of a team developing and implementing a national information policy agenda for America’s public libraries. He also lead’s OITP’s work on the policy implications of 3D printing. Prior to working at ALA, Charlie spent two-and-a-half years providing policy and communications support to members of the U.S. House of Representatives. He worked first for Congressman Mark Critz of Pennsylvania and then for Congressman Ron Barber of Arizona. Charlie holds a B.A. in diplomatic history from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.S. in public policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University.

There is no need to pre-register! Just show up on March 5, 2015, at 2:00 p.m. Eastern by clicking here.

The post 3D printing technologies in libraries: intellectual property right issues appeared first on District Dispatch.

LITA: Join LITA’s Imagineering IG at ALA Annual

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 13:00

Editor’s note: This is guest post by Breanne Kirsch.

During the upcoming 2015 ALA Annual Conference, LITA’s Imagineering Interest Group will host the program “Unknown Knowns and Known Unknowns: How Speculative Fiction Gets Technological Innovation Right and Wrong.” A panel of science fiction and fantasy authors will discuss their work and how it connects with technological developments that were never invented and those that came about in unimagined ways. Tor is sponsoring the program and bringing authors John Scalzi, Vernor Vinge, Greg Bear, and Marie Brennan. Baen Books is also sponsoring the program by bringing Larry Correia to the author panel.

John Scalzi wrote the Old Man’s War series and more recently, Redshirts, which won the 2013 Hugo Award for Best Novel. Vernor Vinge is known for his Realtime/Bobble and Zones of Thought Series and a number of short fiction stories. Greg Bear has written a number of series, including Darwin, The Forge of God, Songs of Earth and Power, Quantum Logic, and The Way. He has also written books for the Halo series, short fiction, and standalone books, most recently, War Dogs as well as the upcoming novels Eternity and Eon. Marie Brennan has written the Onyx Court series, a number of short stories, and more recently the Lady Trent series, including the upcoming Voyage of the Basilisk. Larry Correia has written the Monster Hunter series, Grimnoir Chronicles, Dead Six series, and Iron Kingdoms series. These authors will consider the role speculative fiction plays in fostering innovation and bringing about new ideas.

Please plan to attend the upcoming ALA Annual 2015 Conference and add the Imagineering Interest Group program to your schedule! We look forward to seeing you in San Francisco.

Breanne A. Kirsch is the current Chair of the Imagineering Interest Group as well as the Game Making Interest Group within LITA. She works as a Public Services Librarian at the University of South Carolina Upstate and is the Coordinator of Emerging Technologies. She can be contacted at bkirsch@uscupstate.edu or @breezyalli.

Open Knowledge Foundation: New Open Knowledge Local Groups in Macedonia, Pakistan, Portugal and Ukraine

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 12:45

It’s once again time for us to proudly announce the establishment of a new batch of Open Knowledge Local Groups, founded by community leaders in Macedonia, Pakistan, Portugal and Ukraine, which we hereby welcome warmly into the ever-growing family of Local Groups. This brings the total number of Local Groups and Chapters up to a whopping 58!

In this blog post we would like to introduce the founders of these new groups and invite everyone to join the community in these countries.

MACEDONIA

In Macedonia, the Local Group has been founded by Bardhyl Jashari, who is the director of Metamorphosis Foundation. His professional interests are mainly in the sphere of new technologies, media, civic activism, e-­government and participation. Previously he worked as Information Program Coordinator of the Foundation Open Society – Macedonia. In both capacities, he has run national and international­scope projects, involving tight cooperation with other international organizations, governmental bodies, the business and the civic sector. He is a member of the National Council for Information Society of Macedonia and National Expert for Macedonia of the UN World Summit Award. In the past he was a member of the Task Force for National Strategy for Information Society Development and served as a commissioner at the Agency for Electronic Communication (2005­-2011). Bardhyl holds a master degree at Paris 12 University­Faculty of Public Administration (France) and an Information System Designer Degree from University of Zagreb (Croatia).

To get in touch with Bardhyl and connect with the community in Macedonia, head here.

PAKISTAN

The new Local Group in Pakistan is founded by Nouman Nazim. Nouman has worked for 7+ years with leading Public Sector as well as Non Government Organizations in Pakistan and performed variety of roles related to Administration, Management, Monitoring etc. He has worn many other hats too in his career including programmer, writer, researcher, manager, marketer and strategist. As a result, he have developed unique abilities to manage multi-disciplinary tasks and projects as well as to navigate complex challenges. He has a Bachelor degree in Information Sciences and is currently persuing a Master’s degree in Computer Science besides working on his own startup outside of class. He believes open data lets us achieve what we could normally never be able to and that it has the potential to positively change millions of lives.

In the Open Knowledge Pakistan Local Group Nouman is supported by Sher Afgun Usmani and Sahigan Rana. Sher has studied Computer sciences and is an entrepreneur, co-founder of Yum Solutions and Urducation (an initiative to promote technical education in Urdu). He has been working for 4+ years in the field of software development. Shaigan holds a MBA degree in Marketing, and is now pursuing a Post-Graduate degree in internet marketing from Iqra University Islamabad, Pakistan. His research focuses on entrepreneurship, innovation and open access to international markets. He is co-founder of printingconcern.com and Yum Solutions. He has an interest and several years experience in internet marketing, content writing, Business development and direct sales.

To get in touch with Nouman, Sher and Shaigan and connect with the community in Pakistan, head here.

PORTUGAL

Open Knowledge Portugal is founded in unison by Ricardo Lafuente and Olaf Veerman.

Ricardo co-founded and facilitates the activities of Transparência Hackday Portugal, Portugal’s open data collective. Coming from a communications design background and an MA in Media Design, he has been busy developing tools and projects spanning the fields of typography, open data, information visualization and web technologies. He also co-founded the Porto office of Journalism++, the data-driven journalism agency, where he takes the role of designer and data architect along with Ana Isabel Carvalho. Ana and Ricardo also run the Manufactura Independente design research studio, focusing on libre culture and open design.

Olaf Veerman leads the Lisbon office of Development Seed and their efforts to contribute to the open data community in Europe, concretely by leading project strategy and implementation through full project cycles. Before joining Development Seed, Olaf lived throughout Latin America where he worked with civil society organizations to create social impact through the use of technology. He came over from Flipside, the Lisbon based organization he founded after returning to Portugal from his last stay in the Southern hemisphere. Olaf is fluent in English, Dutch, Portuguese, and Spanish.

To get in touch with Ricardo and Olaf – and connect with the community in Portugal, head here.

UKRAINE

Denis Gursky is the founder of the new Open Knowledge Local Group in Ukraine. He is also the found of SocialBoost; a set of innovative instruments incl. the open data movement in Ukraine, that improves civic engagement and makes government more digitalized — thus accountable, transparent and open. He is furthermore a digital communications and civic engagement expert and works on complex strategies for government and the commercial sector. He is one of the leaders of the open government data movement in Ukraine, supported by government and hacktivists, and is currently developing the Official Open Government Data Portal of Ukraine and Open Data Law.

To get in touch with Denis and connect with the community in Ukraine, head here.

Photo by flipside.org, CC BY-SA.

Raffaele Messuti: Epub linkrot

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 10:00

Linkrot also affects epub files (who would have thought! :)).
How to check the health of external links in epub books (required tools: a shell, atool, pup, gnu parallel).

Dan Scott: Library and Archives Canada: Planning for a new union catalogue

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 03:46

I attended a meeting with Library and Archives Canada today in my role as an Ontario Library Association board member to discuss the plans around a new Canadian union catalogue based on OCLC's hosted services. Following are some of the thoughts I prepared in advance of the meeting, based on the relatively limited materials to which I had access. (I will update this post once those materials have been shared openly; they include rough implementation timelines, perhaps the most interesting of which being that it the replacement system is not expected to be in production until August 2016.) Let me say at the outset that there were no solid answers on potential costs to participating libraries, other than that LAC is striving to keep the costs as low as possible.

Basic question: What form does LAC envision the solution taking?

Will it be:

  • "Library and Archives Canada begins adding records and holdings to WorldCat" as listed for many other countries in http://www.oclc.org/worldcat/catalog/national/timeline.en.html;
  • Or a separate, standalone but openly searchable WorldCat Local catalogue that Canadians can use like the Dutch or United Kingdom union catalogues (which lack significant functionality that standard WorldCat possesses, like the integrated schema.org discovery markup)?
  • Or a separate, standalone but closed catalogue like the Dutch union catalogue GGC and the Combined Regions UnityUK that require a subscription to access?

The answer was "yes, we will be adding records and holdings to WorldCat, and yes, you will be able to search a WorldCat Local instance for both LAC-specific and AMICUS as a whole" - but they're still working out the exact details. Later we determined that it will actually be WorldCat Discovery--essentially a rewrite of WorldCat Local--which assuaged some of my concerns about the current examples we can see of other OCLC-based union catalogues.

Privacy of Canadian citizens

The "Canadian office and data centre locations" requirement does not mean that usage data is exempt from Patriot Act concerns. Specifically, OCLC is an American company and thus the USA Patriot Act "allows US authorities to obtain records from any US-linked company operating in Canada" (per a 2004 brief submitted to the BC Privacy Commissioner by CIPPIC). Canadians should not be subject to this invasion of their privacy by the agents of another nation simply to use their own national union catalogue.

The response: The Justice, Agricultural, and NRCan agencies use US-hosted library systems (Evergreen, by Equinox). However, one of the other participants from a federal agency reported that they had been trying to update to Sierra from Millenium but have been stalled for two years because whatever policy allowed them to go live with US-hosted Millenium is not being allowed now.

LAC claimed that, due to NAFTA, they are not allowed to insist that data be held in Canada unless it is for national security reasons. They noted that any usage data collected wouldn't be the same volume of patron data that would be seen in public libraries. They did point out that Netherlands sends anonymized data to OCLC, but that costs money and impacts response time. Apparently the OCLC web site, they claim not to have had a request under Patriot Act.

Privacy of Canadian citizens, part 2

I didn't get the chance to bring this up during the call...

LAC noted in their background that modern systems have links to social media, and apparently want this as part of a new AMICUS. This would also open up potential privacy leaks; see Eric Hellman on this topic, for example; it is also an area of interest for the recently launched ALA Patron Privacy Technologies Interest Group.

Open data

Opening up access to data is part of the federal government's stated mission. Canada's Action Plan on Open Government 2014-16 says "Open Government Foundation - Open By Default" is a keystone of its plan; "Eligible data and information will be released in standardized, open formats, free of charge, and without restrictions on reuse" under the Open Government Licence - Canada 2.0. I therefore asserted:

  • A relaunched National Union Catalogue should therefore support open data per the federal initiative from launch.
  • The open data should include bibliographic, authority, and holdings records. Guy Berthiaume's reply to CLA and CAPAL that libraries can use the Z39.50 protocol to try to access records from individual library's Z39.50 servers ignores one of the primary purposes of a union catalogue, which is to avoid that time-consuming search across the various Z39.50 servers of the institutions that contributed their data to the union catalogue in the first place.

The response: The ACAN requirements document indicated a requirement that the data be made available under an ODC-BY license (matching OCLC's general WorldCat license); and LAC needs to get the data back to support their federated search tool.

I asked if they had checked to see if ODC-BY and Open Government License - Canada 2.0 licenses are compatible; they responded that that was something they would need to look into. Happily, the CLIPol tool indicates that the ODB-BY 1.0 and Open Government License - Canada 2.0 licenses are mostly compatible.

Contemporary features: are we achieving the stated goals?

The backgrounder benefits/objectives section stated: "In the current AMICUS?based context, the NUC has not kept pace with new technological functions, capabilities, and client needs. Contemporary features such as a user?oriented display and navigation, user customization, links to social media, and linked open data output were not available when AMICUS was implemented in the 1990s."

Canadian resource visibility

To preserve and promote our unique national culture, we want Canadian library resources to be as visible as possible on the web. This is generally accomplished by publishing a sitemap (a list of the web pages for a given web site, along with when each page was last updated) and allowing search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo to crawl those web pages and index their data.

To maximize the visibility of Canadian library resources on the open web, we need our union catalogue to generate a sitemap that points to only the actual records with holdings for Canadian libraries, not just WorldCat.org in general. For example, http://adamnet.worldcat.org/robots.txt simply points to the generic http://www.worldcat.org/libraries/sitemap_index.xml, not a specific sitemap for the Dutch union catalogue.

Our union catalogue should publish schema.org metadata to improve the discoverability of our resources in search engines (which initiated the schema.org standard for that purpose). WorldCat includes schema.org metadata, but WorldCat Local instances do not.

The response: There was some confusion about schema.org, and they asked if I didn't think that OCLC's syndication program was sufficient for enabling web discoverability. I replied in the negative.

Standards support (MARC21, RDA, ISO etc.)

I didn't get a chance to raise these questions.

What standards, exactly, are meant by this?

"Technical requirements including volumetrics and W3C compliance" is also very broad and vague. With respect to "W3C compliance", W3C Standards is just the start of many standards.

  • Presumably there will be WCAG compliance for accessibility - but to what extent?
  • Both the adamnet and fablibraries instances landing pages state that their canonical URL is www.worldcat.org, which effectively hides them from search engines.
Mobile support

The W3C Standards page mentions mobile friendliness as part of its standards.

WorldCat.org itself is not mobile friendly. It uses a separate website with different URLs to serve up mobile web pages, and does not automatically detect mobile browsers; the onus is on the user to find the "WorldCat Mobile" page, and that has been in a "Beta" state since 2009. The "beta" contravenes the stated requirements for the AMICUS replacement service to not be an alpha or beta, unless you choose to ignore the massive adoption of mobile devices for searching and browsing purposes, and the beta mobile experience lacks functionality compared to the desktop version.

The adamnet and fablibraries WorldCat Local instances don't advertise the mobile option, which is slightly different than the standard WorldCat Mobile version (for example, it offers record detail pages), but the navigation between desktop and mobile is sub-par. If you have bookmarked a page on the desktop, then open that bookmark on your synchronized browser on a mobile device, you can only get the desktop view.

Linked open data

Linked open data around records, holdings, and participating libraries has arguably been a standard since the W3 Library Linked Data working group issued its final report in 2011.

  • Data--including library holdings--should be available both as bulk downloads and as linked open data
  • Records need to be linked to libraries and holdings. For humans, that missing link in WorldCat is supplied by a JavaScript lookup based on geographic location info that the human supplies. This prevents other automated services from aggregating the data and creating new services based on it (including entirely Canadian-built and hosted services which would then protect Canadians from USA Patriot Act concerns).
  • MARC records should be one of the directly downloadable formats via the web. Currently download options are limited to experimental & incomplete ntriple, turtle, JSON-LD, and RDF-XML formats.
Application programming interface (API)

I didn't get the chance to bring this up during the call...

OCLC offers the xID API in a very limited fashion to non-members, which is one of the only ways to match ISBN, LCCN, and OCLC numbers. LAC should ensure that Canadian libraries have access to some similarly efficient means of finding matching records without having to become full OCLC Cataloguing members.

Updating the NUC

I didn't get the chance to bring this up during the call...

In an ideal world, the NUC would adopt the standard web indexing practice of checking sitemaps (for those libraries that produce them) on a regular (daily or weekly basis) and add/replace any new/modified records & holdings from the contributing libraries accordingly, rather than requiring libraries to upload their own records & holdings on an irregular basis.

DuraSpace News: Quarterly Report from Fedora, October - December 2014

planet code4lib - Tue, 2015-03-03 00:00

From The Fedora Steering Group

Fedora Development - In the past quarter, the development team released the production release of Fedora 4.0; detailed release notes are here:

SearchHub: Thoughts on “Search vs. Discovery”

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 22:21
“Search vs discovery” is a common dichotomy that is used in discussions about search technology, where the former is about finding specific things that are either known or assumed to exist, and the latter is about using the search/browse interface to discover what content is available. A single user session may include both of these “agendas”, especially if a users’ assumption that a certain piece of content exists, is not quickly verified by finding it. Findability is impaired when there are too many irrelevant or noise hits (false positives), which obscures or camouflages the intended results. This happens when metadata is poorly managed, search relevance is poorly tuned or when the users’ query is ambiguous and no feedback is provided by the application (such as autocomplete, recommendation or did you mean) to help improve it. Content Visibility Content visibility is important because a document must first be included in the result set to be found (obviously), but it is also critical for discovery especially with very large content sets. User experience has shown that faceted navigation is one of the best ways to provide this visualization especially if it includes dimensions that focus on “aboutness” and “relatedness”. However if a document is not appropriately tagged, it may become invisible to the user once the facet that it should be included in (but is not) is selected. Data quality really matters here! (My colleague Mark Bennett has authored a Data Quality Toolkit to help with this.  The venerable Lucene Index Toolbox or “Luke” which can be used to inspect the back end Lucene index is also very useful. The LukeRequestHandler is bundled with Solr. ) Without appropriate metadata, the search engine has no way of knowing what is related to what. Search engines are not smart in this way – the intelligence of a search application is built into its index. Search and Content Curation Findability and visibility are also very important when the search application is used as a tool for content curation within an organization. Sometimes, the search agenda is to see if something has been created before, as a “do diligence” activity before creating it. Thus, the phrase “out of sight, out of mind” becomes important when content that can’t be found tends to be re-created. This leads to unnecessary duplication, which is wasteful but also counter-productive to search both by adding to the repository size and by increasing the possibility of obfuscation by similarity. Applying “deduplication” processes after the fact is a band-aid – we should make it easier to find things in the first place so we don’t have to do more work later to clean up the mess. We also need to be confident in our search results, so that if we don’t find it, it is likely that it doesn’t exist – see my comments on this point in Introducing Query Autofiltering. Note that this is always a slippery slope. In science, absence of evidence does not equate to evidence of absence – hence “Finding Bigfoot”!  (If they ever do find “Squatch” then no more show – or they have to change the title to “Bigfoot Found!” – which would be very popular but also couldn’t be a series!  That’s OK, I only watched it once to discover that they don’t actually “find” Bigfoot – hence the ‘ing’ suffix. I suppose that “Searching for” sounds too futile to tune it in even once.) Auto-classification Tuning Auto-classification technology is a potential cure in all of the above cases, but can also exacerbate the problem if not properly managed. Machine Learning approaches or using an ontologies and associated rules, provide ways to enhance the relevance of important documents and to organize them in ways that improve both search and discovery. However, in the early phases of development it is likely that an auto-classification system will make two types of errors, that if not fixed can lead to problems of both findability and visibility.  First, it will tag documents erroneously leading to the camouflage or noise problem and second, it will not tag documents that it should – leading to a problem with content visibility. We call these “precision” and “recall” errors respectively. The recall error is especially insidious because if not detected will cause documents to be dropped from consideration when a navigation facet is clicked. Also, errors of omission are more difficult to detect, and require the input of persons who understand the content set well enough to know what the autoclassifier “should” do. Manual tagging, while potentially more accurate, is simply not feasible in many cases because Subject Matter Experts are difficult to outsource. Data quality analysis/curation is the key here. Many times the problem is not the search engines fault. Garbage-In-Garbage-Out as the saying goes. Data Visualization – Search-Driven Analytics I think that one of the most exciting usages of search as a discovery tool is the combination of the search paradigm with analytics. This used to be the purview of the relational database model which is at the core of what we call “Business Intelligence” or BI. Reports generated by analysts from relational data go under the rubric of OLAP (online analytical processing) which typically involves a Data Analyst who designs a set of relational queries, the output of which are then input to a graphing engine to generate a set of charts. When the data changes, the OLAP “cube” is re-executed and a new report emerges. Generating new ways to look at the data require the development, testing, etc of new cubes. This process by its very nature leads to stagnation – cubes are expensive to create and this may stifle new ideas since there is some expert labor required to bring these ideas to fruition. Search engines and relational databases are very different animals. Search engines are not as good as RDBMS at several things – ACID transactions, relational joins, etc — but they are much better at dealing with complex queries that include both structured and unstructured (textual) components. Search indexes like Lucene can include numerical, spatial and temporal data alongside textual information.  Using facets, they can also count things that are the output of these complex queries. This enables us to ask more interesting questions about data – questions that get to “why” something happened rather than just “what”.  Furthermore, recent enhancements to Solr have added statistical analyses to the mix – we can now develop highly interactive data discovery/visualization applications which remove the data analyst from the loop. While there is still a case for traditional BI, search-driven discovery will fill the gap by allowing any user – technical or not – to do the “what if” questions. Once an important analysis has been discovered, it can be encapsulated as an OLAP cube so that the intelligence of its questions can be productized/disseminated. Since this section is about visualization and there are no pictures in this post, you may want to “see” examples of what I am talking about. First, check out Chris Hostetter (aka “Hoss”)’s blog post “Hey, You Got Your Facets in My Stats! You Got Your Stats In My Facets!!” , and his earlier post on pivot facets. Another way cool demonstration of this capability comes from Sam Mefford when he worked at Avalon Consulting – this is a very compelling demonstration of how faceted search can be used as a discovery/visualization tool. Bravo Sam! This is where the rubber meets the road folks!

The post Thoughts on “Search vs. Discovery” appeared first on Lucidworks.

District Dispatch: Free webinar: Expanding immigrant access through libraries

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 22:17

Hartford Public Library

Library services to immigrants are extensive and include world language collections, multicultural programming, ESL, citizenship, computer classes, and information brokering. Learn how your library can better support immigrants in “We Belong Here: Expanding Immigrant Access to Government and Community,” a free webinar hosted by e-government service Lib2gov from the American Library Association’s Washington Office and University of Maryland’s iPAC.

This webinar will focus on e-government services that open access for immigrants, using the Hartford Public Library’s American Place Initiative as a national model for immigrant services, resources, and engagement through public libraries.

Homa Naficy, chief adult learning officer for the Hartford Public Library, will lead the interactive webinar. Homa Naficy joined Hartford Public Library in 2000 to design and direct The American Place program for Hartford’s immigrants and refugees. Born in Paris, a native of Iran and now an American citizen, Multicultural Services Director Homa Naficy began her library career as a reference librarian at Newark Public Library. Before joining the staff of Hartford Public Library, she served as a reference librarian at Yonkers Public Library and later as librarian for Adult Services and Outreach for the Westchester Library System.

The American Place has become a magnet for new arrivals seeking immigration information, resources for learning English and preparing for United States citizenship. In 2010, the program was awarded two major grants, a citizenship education grant from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (the only library in the nation to receive such funding), and a National Leadership grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services designed to promote immigrant civic engagement. On completion, this project will serve as a model for other libraries nationally. The American Place program is also the only library in the state to receive funding for adult basic education from the Connecticut Department of Education. In 2001, Ms. Naficy received the Connecticut Immigrant of the Year Award, and in 2013 she was chosen a “Champion of Change” by The White House.

Webinar title: We Belong Here: Expanding Immigrant Access to Government and Community
Date: March 11, 2015
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m. EST
Register now

The webinar will be archived.

The post Free webinar: Expanding immigrant access through libraries appeared first on District Dispatch.

Islandora: Islandora/Fedora 4 Project Update II

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 20:21

On Friday, February 27th, the Fedora 4 Interest Group met for the second time to discuss the progress of our big upgration (the first meeting was back at the end of January). The full notes from the meeting are here, but I'll summarize some of the highlights:

Project Updates

The project has entered its second month with plenty accomplished. Nick was sent to Code4Lib 2015 in Portland, Oregon to work with our Technical Lead, Danny Lamb. The two worked on the proof-of-concept, and it was presented as a lightning talk (video demo). Additionally, Nick and Danny worked with the Hydra and Fedora communities on a shared data model, Hydra Works, which evolved into the Fedora Community Data Model.

After Code4Lib 2015, Nick and Danny focused on updating the Technical Design document, that provides:

  1. an understanding of the Islandora 7.x-2.x design rationale
  2. the importance of using an integration framework
  3. the use of camel
  4. inversion of control and camel
  5. camel and scripting languages
  6. Islandora Sync
  7. Solr and Triple store indexing
  8. Islandora (Drupal).

Or, to sum up the new ways of Islandora in one imge:

Nick and Danny also focused on the development virtual environment (DevOps) for the project. Nick decided to move away from using Chef and Berkshelf due to dependency support. The DevOps setup was moved to basic bash scripts and Vagrant. Contributors to the project can now spin a virtual development environment (which includes the proof-of-concept) in about 5 minutes with a single command: vagrant up. Instructions here.

Nick also focused on project documentation and documentation deployment. All document for the project resides in the git repository for the project, in Markdown format. The documentation can be generated into a static site with MkDocs and thendeployed to GitHub Pages. The documentation for the project can be viewed here, and information about how the documentation is built and deployed can be found here. There is also an outline of how you can contribute to the project here (regardless of your background. We need far more than programmers).

A new use case template makes bringing your ideas to the table much easier. Check out some of the existing use cases for examples - and add yours!

Nick, Danny, and Melissa also did an interview for Duraspace.

Upgration

The upgration portion of the project is dependant on a couple of sub-items of the project to play out, but continues in tandem.

The first sub-item is the Fedora Audit Service. The Islandora community make use of the audit service in Fedora 3.x for PREMIS and other provance services. It currently does not exist in Fedora 4.x, so the community has come together to plan our the service over two conference calls that will outline use cases and functional requirements, which will then translate to JIRA tickets for a Fedora code sprint in late March. Notes from the first meeting are here. Nick has been tasked with identifying if the community should use the PROV-O ontology, the PREMIS ontology, or a combination of both. The second item is bridging the work of Mike Durbin’s migration-utils and Danny’s Apache Camel work in the Islandora & Fedora 4 project. While Nick was working to create test fixtures for Mike and Danny, he discovered a bug in Fedora 3.8.0, which will need to be resolved before any test fixtures can come out of York University's upgration pilot.

Nick and Danny will most likely focus on migration work and community contributed developer tasks in March.

Funding

The Islandora Foundation is pleased to welcome Simon Fraser University as a Partner for their support of the Fedora 4 project. Longtime member PALS has also earmarked some of their membership dues to help out the upgration. If you or your instition are interested in being financial supporters, please drop me a line.

Other News

Contributor Kevin Bowrin wrote up an account of exprience installing and trying out the work our team has done so far. Check it out.

 

 

District Dispatch: Join March 6 free webinar on mapping inclusion: Public library technology and community needs

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 20:15

As economic, education, health and other disparities grow, equitable access to and participation in the online environment is essential for success. And yet, communities and individuals find themselves at differing levels of readiness in their ability to access and use the Internet, engage a range of digital technologies and get and create digital content.

The Digital Inclusion Survey examines the efforts of public libraries to address these readiness gaps by providing free access to broadband, public access technologies, digital content, digital literacy training and a range of programming that helps build digitally inclusive communities. A new interactive mapping tool places these library resources in a community context, including unemployment and education rates.

Join researchers and data visualization experts at a free webinar on March 6, 1-2 p.m. EST, to explore the intersections of public access technologies and education, employment, health & wellness, digital literacy, e-government and inclusion. Speakers will share new tools and demonstrate how to locate and interpret national and state-level results from the survey for planning and advocacy purposes, as well as present cases for the interactive mapping tool, with suggestions for creating a digital inclusion snapshot of your public library.

The survey, which is funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and conducted by the ALA Office for Research & Statistics and the Information Policy & Access Center (iPAC) at the University of Maryland. The International City/County Management Association and the ALA Office for Information Technology Policy are grant partners.

Learn more about the webinar and speakers from iPAC, Community Attributes, IMLS and OITP here.

The post Join March 6 free webinar on mapping inclusion: Public library technology and community needs appeared first on District Dispatch.

District Dispatch: Rising to the newest (Knight) challenge

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 20:02

DC Public Library in Washington, D.C. Photo by Maxine Schnitzer Photography.

It has been said that “libraries are the cornerstone of our democracy” so the newest Knight News Challenge on Elections should be right up our alley. From candidate forums to community conversations, about half of all public libraries report to the Digital Inclusion Survey that they host community engagement events. What is your library doing that you might want to expand or what new innovative idea would you like to seed? Knight is inviting all kinds of ideas: “We see democratic engagement as more than just the act of voting. It should be embedded in every part of civic life…”

So—what’s your best idea for: How might we better inform voters and increase civic participation before, during and after elections?

There are several ways you can participate and learn more:

  1. Check out and comment on the growing number of applications. Which of these could best help address issues you see and hear in your community and your library? On a quick scan, I could definitely see a library or libraries as partners for the Knowledge Swap Market, or a similar project, for instance. Also—how might an application be made stronger and more useful? You don’t have to be an applicant to contribute to the conversation, and comments are accepted through April 13.
  2. BUT—you should definitely consider applying! With more than $3 million available, a wide-open invitation to interpret the question as you see fit, encouragement to partner with others, and the opportunity to get feedback from others to improve your application, there’s a lot to be gained in participating.
  3. Learn more about the whole process at “virtual office hours” open Tuesday, March 3, from 1-2 p.m. Eastern Time and on Tuesday, March 17, from 1-2 p.m. ET. Information about these virtual office hours and in-person events in cities across the county can be accessed here. I attended the event in D.C., and it was a great opportunity to meet people and make connections for possible collaboration.

The challenge is a collaboration between the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, a leading funder of news and media innovation, and three other foundations: the Democracy Fund, the Rita Allen Foundation and the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation. Winners will receive a share of more than $3 million, which includes up to $250,000 from the Democracy Fund.

This news challenge and the recent NetGain challenge are great opportunities to gain visibility and support for library projects working to address community needs and challenges in innovative ways. These invitations to engage with other community and national stakeholders also resonate with the emerging national policy agenda for libraries and the Aspen Institute report (pdf) on re-envisioning public libraries.

I hope you’ll consider joining the conversation. If so, please leave a note here in comments, so others can look for your proposal.

The post Rising to the newest (Knight) challenge appeared first on District Dispatch.

Islandora: Community Contributor Kudos: Diego Pino

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 16:12

It has been a while since we have done a Community Contributor Kudos post, but if anyone is worthy of reviving the feature, it is this week's subject: Diego Pino.

Diego is a freelance developer who specializes in addressing the needs of the scientific community with open source solutions. Right now he is also working as an IT Project Manager for a project that aims to build a national biodiversity network, funded by the Chilean government. If you have gone to the listserv with a question in the past several months, you will also recognize him as one of the most helpful troubleshooters in the Islandora community - pretty remarkable given that he only started using the software about a year ago:

Islandora is still new for me and still amazes me. All started about a year ago. I was given the task to find a way of storing and sharing Biodiversity occurrence records, and thus build a federated network that could help scientists to collaborate and share research data. The primary need was to move data to GBIF for storage, described with Darwin Core metadata, so I started researching what was going on in terms of preserving digital content for science. Until then I thought everything could be solved using a relational database and some custom coding (how wrong I was!)   He started by exploring eSciDoc (created by Matthias Razum), a project based on Fedora 3.x. It was designed to address a need that Diego had been working on for some time: how to involve researchers and scientists directly in the process of sharing and curating their own data. This, and the project's own documentation, sold Diego on Fedora 3.x, but he wanted more - not only the ability to ingest and preserve digital content, but a fully working framework/API that would allow him to focus on the user experience.   And then I found the Islandora's google forum and it was exactly what I needed: A big and nice community of human beings, with problems similar to mine, and with an incredible piece of software, a.k.a. Islandora. I must admit the learning curve was hard; some needed things were not developed and I had to add to my new knowledge Drupal, Solr and Web Semantics (my favourite subject right now), but the community was great and helpful, and meeting Giancarlo Birello was an inspiration to keep working and also to help other users on the forum. I have received so much; giving a little back is a must.

Currently Diego is developing and managing a four repo configuration, with each running a stock Islandora 7.x-1.4/Fedora 3.7.1, using an external Tomcat and other goodies, but sharing a common Solr Cloud index. As Diego describes it, "one collection, many shards, many replicas." He had to fine tune the way objects were indexed to avoid duplicated PIDs and to be able to distinguish during search which repo the object lives in. The repos are also running his Redbiodiversidad Solution Pack , which handles Darwin Core based objects, maps, EML, and GBIF DC archives; and the Ontologies Solution Pack, which allows objects to be related by multiple overlapping ontologies- and which Diego is particularly proud of.

My favourite thing about this configuration is that I can search across all existing repos and their collections, use existing solution packs like PDF or Scholar to describe publications and people, relate local objects to remote ones, and build nice linked data graphs. These expand the notion of plain, independent metadata records encapsulated in objects, to a fully new dimension for us (maybe exaggerating here!) that is helping local scientists to understand their data in a more ample context: in my opinion the needed transition from information to knowledge.

A very simple and trivial example. A Chilean scientist can now discover what other biological occurrences (associated species) are found near a place where they made a discovery; who found them, when, under which method, and filter by many parameters in a few steps or clicks,  thanks to Solr search module + linked data. They can expand their knowledge, collaborate, and  manage their own research data in ways their previous workflows (excel?) did not allow. And my favourite part: if something is not working as expected I can fix it using Islandora's API. There are some many nice hooks available and more to come.

As for projects coming down the pipeline, Diego is working on a new visual workflow to ingest and manage relationships between objects, reusing the way the Ontologies SP currently displays a linked object graph. The end goal is to allow people to interactively add new objects, connect them using rules present in multiple OWLs, and finally save this new "knowledge" representation as a whole. Essentially, every ontology becomes a programable workflow. Using this system will maintain a consistent network of repositories with well-related objects, while still giving users control of their data. He has promised the community an OCR editor, which remains high on his TODO list. As an active member of the Fedora 4 Interest Group, Diego is also involved in planning and developing the next generation of Islandora (and taking a stand for those who don't want to see XML Forms vanish into the night).

Diego does all of this amazing work from his home office in a little village named Pucón in southern Chile, nestled next to an active volcano and a lake. He credits this environment with giving him the peace to code - that, and his small herd of dogs:

Lastly, none of this work using Islandora could have be done without the great support of the community and the also very important support  and patience of my wife and my 4 Dogs, who by this time already hate ontologies.

His Red Biodiversidad repo is still in development, but a beta site is online, showing Solr results from their cloud, fetched from the real repos' collections. And here is one of those collections, full of biological data and growing all the time. You can find more of Diego's work on his GitHub page, and you can usually find him making the Islandora community better one solution at a time on our listerv (it's quite remarkable how many search results for 'diego' in our Google Group turns up some variation of the phrase "thanks, Diego").

Someone in Diego's family is a remarkable photographer, so when I asked him to send along a photo I could use with this blog so the community could put a face to all of those awesome listserv posts, it was difficult to choose. I leave it the community to decide which image best suits Diego Pino: Programmer on a Mountain or Man Hugs Dog:

        

LibUX: WordPress for Libraries

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 14:44

Amanda and Michael are teaching simultaneous online classes on WordPress for Libraries – at least sixty hours worth of tutorial for beginners and developers. Back to back, these classes take you from using WordPress out-of-the-box to create and manage a library website through the custom development of an event management plugin.

Using WordPress to Build Library Websites

WordPress is an open-source content management system that helps you create, design, and maintain a website. Its intuitive interface means that there’s no need to learn complex programming languages — and it’s free, you can do away with purchasing expensive web development software. This course will guide you in applying WordPress tools and functionality to library content. You will learn the nuts and bolts of building a library website that is both user friendly and easy to maintain. Info

Advanced WordPress

WordPress is an incredible out-of-the-box tool, but libraries with ambitious web services will find it needs to be customized to meet their unique needs. This course is built around a single project: the ground-up development of an event management plugin, which will provide a thorough understanding of WordPress as a framework–hooks, actions, methods–that can be used to address pressing and ancillary issues like content silos and the need to C.O.P.E. – create once, publish everywhere. Info

Format

American Library Association eCourses are asynchronous with mixed-media materials available online and at no additional cost. So, you don’t have to get a text book. You can usually proceed at your own pace and submit material through the forums, unless the facilitator changes it up — and we probably won’t, unless it makes sense to keep the class proceeding together. Both of our courses are six weeks, beginning March 16, 2015 – but we want you to squeeze as much as you can out of these classes, so we are available to explain, walkthrough, and answer questions for as long as you need. We really want you to walk away with real-world applicable skills.

The post WordPress for Libraries appeared first on LibUX.

Ed Summers: Repetition

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 14:00

To be satisfied with repeating, with traversing the ruts which in other conditions led to good, is the surest way of creating carelessness about present and actual good.

John Dewey in Human Nature and Conduct (p. 67).

Mark E. Phillips: DPLA Metadata Analysis: Part 4 – Normalized Subjects

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 13:43

This is yet another post in the series DPLA Metadata Analysis that already has three parts, here are links to part one, two and three.

This post looks at what is the effect of basic normalization of subjects on various metrics mentioned in the previous posts.

Background

One of the things that happens in library land is that subject headings are often constructed by connecting various broader pieces into a single subject string that becomes more specific.  For example the heading “Children–Texas.” is constructed from two different pieces,  “Children”, and “Texas”.  If we had a record that was about children in Oklahoma it could be represented as “Children–Oklahoma.”.

The analysis I did earlier took the subject exactly as it occurred in the dataset and used that for the analysis.  I had a question asked about what would happen if we normalized the subjects before we did the analysis on them,  effectively turning the unique string of “Children–Texas.” into two subject pieces of “Children” and “Texas” and then applied the previous analysis to the new data. The specific normalization includes stripping trailing periods, and then splitting on double hyphens.

Note:  Because this conversion has the ability to introduce quite a bit of duplication into the number of subjects within a record I am making the normalized subjects unique before adding them to the index.  I also apply this same method to the un-normalized subjects.  In doing so I noticed that the item that had the  most subjects previously at 1,476 was reduced to 1,084 because there were a 347 values that were in the subject list more than once.  Because of this the numbers in the resulting tables will be slightly different than those in the first three posts when it comes to average subjects and total subjects,  each of these values should go down.

Predictions

My predictions before the analysis are that we will see an increase in the number of unique subjects,  a drop in the number of unique subjects per Hub for some Hubs, and an increase in the number of shared subjects across Hubs.

Results

With the normalization of subjects,  there was a change in the number of unique subject headings from 1,871,884 unique headings to 1,162,491 unique headings after normalization,  a reduction in the number of unique subject headings by 38%.

In addition to the reduction of the total number of unique subject headings by 38% as stated above,  the distribution of subjects across the Hubs changed significantly, in one case an increase of 443%.  The table below displays these numbers before and after normalization as well as the percentage change.

# of Hubs with Subject # of Subjects # of Normalized Subjects % Change 1 1,717,512 1,055,561 -39% 2 114,047 60,981 -47% 3 21,126 20,172 -5% 4 8,013 9,483 18% 5 3,905 5,130 31% 6 2,187 3,094 41% 7 1,330 2,024 52% 8 970 1,481 53% 9 689 1,080 57% 10 494 765 55% 11 405 571 41% 12 302 453 50% 13 245 413 69% 14 199 340 71% 15 152 261 72% 16 117 205 75% 17 63 152 141% 18 62 130 110% 19 32 77 141% 20 20 55 175% 21 7 38 443% 22 7 23 229% 23 0 2 N/A

The two subjects that are shared across 23 of the Hubs once normalized are “Education” and “United States”

The high level stats for all 8,012,390 records are available in the following table.

 Records Total Subject Strings Count Total Normalized Subject String Count Average Subjects Per Record Average Normalized Subjects Per Record Percent Change 8,012,390 23,860,080 28,644,188 2.98 3.57 20.05%

You can see the total number of subjects went up 20% after they were normalized, and the number of subjects per record increased from just under three per record to a little over three and a half normalized subjects per record.

Results by Hub

The table below presents data for each hub in the DPLA.  The columns are the number of records, total subjects, total normalized subjects, the average number of subjects per record, the average number of normalized subjects per record, and finally the percent of change that is represented.

Hub Records Total Subject String Count Total Normalized Subject String Count Average Subjects Per Record Average Normalized Subjects Per Record Percent Change ARTstor 56,342 194,883 202,220 3.46 3.59 3.76 Biodiversity Heritage Library 138,288 453,843 452,007 3.28 3.27 -0.40 David Rumsey 48,132 22,976 22,976 0.48 0.48 0 Digital Commonwealth 124,804 295,778 336,935 2.37 2.7 13.91 Digital Library of Georgia 259,640 1,151,351 1,783,884 4.43 6.87 54.94 Harvard Library 10,568 26,641 36,511 2.52 3.45 37.05 HathiTrust 1,915,159 2,608,567 4,154,244 1.36 2.17 59.25 Internet Archive 208,953 363,634 412,640 1.74 1.97 13.48 J. Paul Getty Trust 92,681 32,949 43,590 0.36 0.47 32.30 Kentucky Digital Library 127,755 26,008 27,561 0.2 0.22 5.97 Minnesota Digital Library 40,533 202,456 211,539 4.99 5.22 4.49 Missouri Hub 41,557 97,111 117,933 2.34 2.84 21.44 Mountain West Digital Library 867,538 2,636,219 3,552,268 3.04 4.09 34.75 National Archives and Records Administration 700,952 231,513 231,513 0.33 0.33 0 North Carolina Digital Heritage Center 260,709 866,697 1,207,488 3.32 4.63 39.32 Smithsonian Institution 897,196 5,689,135 5,686,107 6.34 6.34 -0.05 South Carolina Digital Library 76,001 231,267 355,504 3.04 4.68 53.72 The New York Public Library 1,169,576 1,995,817 2,515,252 1.71 2.15 26.03 The Portal to Texas History 477,639 5,255,588 5,410,963 11 11.33 2.96 United States Government Printing Office (GPO) 148,715 456,363 768,830 3.07 5.17 68.47 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 18,103 67,954 85,263 3.75 4.71 25.47 University of Southern California. Libraries 301,325 859,868 905,465 2.85 3 5.30 University of Virginia Library 30,188 93,378 123,405 3.09 4.09 32.16

The number of unique subjects before and after subject normalization is presented in the table below.  The percent of change is also included in the final column.

Hub Unique Subjects Unique Normalized Subjects % Change Unique ARTstor 9,560 9,546 -0.15 Biodiversity Heritage Library 22,004 22,005 0 David Rumsey 123 123 0 Digital Commonwealth 41,704 39,557 -5.15 Digital Library of Georgia 132,160 88,200 -33.26 Harvard Library 9,257 6,210 -32.92 HathiTrust 685,733 272,340 -60.28 Internet Archive 56,911 49,117 -13.70 J. Paul Getty Trust 2,777 2,560 -7.81 Kentucky Digital Library 1,972 1,831 -7.15 Minnesota Digital Library 24,472 24,325 -0.60 Missouri Hub 6,893 6,757 -1.97 Mountain West Digital Library 227,755 172,663 -24.19 National Archives and Records Administration 7,086 7,086 0 North Carolina Digital Heritage Center 99,258 79,353 -20.05 Smithsonian Institution 348,302 346,096 -0.63 South Carolina Digital Library 23,842 17,516 -26.53 The New York Public Library 69,210 36,709 -46.96 The Portal to Texas History 104,566 97,441 -6.81 United States Government Printing Office (GPO) 174,067 48,537 -72.12 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 6,183 5,724 -7.42 University of Southern California. Libraries 65,958 64,021 -2.94 University of Virginia Library 3,736 3,664 -1.93

The number and percentage of subjects and normalized subjects that are unique and also unique to a given hub is presented in the table below.

Hub Subjects Unique to Hub Normalized Subject Unique to Hub % Subjects Unique to Hub % Normalized Subjects Unique to Hub % Change ARTstor 4,941 4,806 52 50 -4 Biodiversity Heritage Library 9,136 6,929 42 31 -26 David Rumsey 30 28 24 23 -4 Digital Commonwealth 31,094 27,712 75 70 -7 Digital Library of Georgia 114,689 67,768 87 77 -11 Harvard Library 7,204 3,238 78 52 -33 HathiTrust 570,292 200,652 83 74 -11 Internet Archive 28,978 23,387 51 48 -6 J. Paul Getty Trust 1,852 1,337 67 52 -22 Kentucky Digital Library 1,337 1,111 68 61 -10 Minnesota Digital Library 17,545 17,145 72 70 -3 Missouri Hub 4,338 3,783 63 56 -11 Mountain West Digital Library 192,501 134,870 85 78 -8 National Archives and Records Administration 3,589 3,399 51 48 -6 North Carolina Digital Heritage Center 84,203 62,406 85 79 -7 Smithsonian Institution 325,878 322,945 94 93 -1 South Carolina Digital Library 18,110 9,767 76 56 -26 The New York Public Library 52,002 18,075 75 49 -35 The Portal to Texas History 87,076 78,153 83 80 -4 United States Government Printing Office (GPO) 105,389 15,702 61 32 -48 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 3,076 2,322 50 41 -18 University of Southern California. Libraries 51,822 48,889 79 76 -4 University of Virginia Library 2,425 1,134 65 31 -52 Conclusion

Overall there was an increase (20%) in the total occurrences of subject strings in the dataset when subject normalization was applied. The total number of unique subjects decreased significantly (38%) after subject normalization.  It is easy to identify Hubs which are heavy users of the LCSH subject headings for their subjects because the percent change in the number of unique subjects before and after normalization is quite high, examples of this include the HathiTrust and the Government Printing Office. For many of the Hubs,  normalization of subjects significantly reduced the number and percentage of subjects that were unique to that hub.

I hope you found this post interesting,  if you want to chat about the topic hit me up on Twitter.

Alf Eaton, Alf: Organising, building and deploying static web sites/applications

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 09:34
Build remotely

At the simplest end of the scale is GitHub Pages, which uses Jekyll to build the app on GitHub’s servers:

  • The config files and source code are in the root directory of a gh-pages branch.

  • Jekyll builds the source HTML/MD, CSS/SASS and JS/CS files to a _site directory - this is where the app is served from.

  • For third-party libraries, you can either download production-ready code manually to a lib folder and include them, or install with Bower to a bower_components folder and include them directly from there.

The benefit of this approach is that you can edit the source files through GitHub’s web interface, and the site will update without needing to do any local building or deployment.

Jekyll will build all CSS/SASS files (including those pulled in from bower_components) into a single CSS file. However, it doesn’t yet have something similar for JS/CoffeeScript. If this was available it would be ideal, as then the bower_components folder could be left out of the built app.

Directory structure of a Jekyll GitHub Pages app Build locally, deploy the built app as a separate branch

If the app is being built locally, there are several steps that can be taken to improve the process:

  • Keep the config files in the root folder, but move the app’s source files into an app folder.

  • Use Gulp to build the Bower-managed third-party libraries alongside the app’s own styles and scripts.

  • While keeping the source files in the master branch, use Gulp to deploy the built app in a separate gh-pages branch.

A good example of this is the way that the Yeoman generator for scaffolding a Polymer app structures a project (other Yeoman generators are similar):

  • In the master branch, install/build-related files are in the root folder (run npm install and bower install to fetch third-party components, use bower link for any independent local components).

  • The actual app source files (index.html, app styles, app-specific elements) are in the app folder.

  • gulp builds all the HTML, CSS/SASS and JS source files to the dist folder; gulp serve makes the built files available over HTTP and reloads on changes; gulp deploy pushes the dist folder to a remote gh-pages branch.

Directory structure of a Polymer app Tools

District Dispatch: Reminder: Last chance to apply for Google summer fellowship

planet code4lib - Mon, 2015-03-02 06:43

Google Policy Fellows

The American Library Association’s Washington Office is calling for graduate students, especially those in library and information science-related academic programs, to apply for the 2015 Google Policy Fellows program. Applications are due by March 12, 2015.

For the summer of 2015, the selected fellow will spend 10 weeks in residence at the ALA policy office in Washington, D.C., to learn about national policy and complete a major project. Google provides the $7,500 stipend for the summer, but the work agenda is determined by the ALA and the selected fellow. Throughout the summer, Google’s Washington office will provide an educational program for all of the fellows, such as lunchtime talks and interactions with Google Washington staff.

The fellows work in diverse areas of information policy that may include digital copyright, e-book licenses and access, future of reading, international copyright policy, broadband deployment, telecommunications policy (including e-rate and network neutrality), digital divide, access to information, free expression, digital literacy, online privacy, the future of libraries generally, and many other topics.

Margaret Kavaras, a recent graduate from the George Washington University, served as the 2014 ALA Google Policy Fellow. Kavaras was later appointed as an OITP Research Associate shortly after participating in the Google Fellowship program.

Further information about the program and host organizations is available at the Google Public Policy Fellowship website.

The post Reminder: Last chance to apply for Google summer fellowship appeared first on District Dispatch.

James Cook University, Library Tech: Readings & Past Exams/Reserver Online/Masterfile access issues

planet code4lib - Sun, 2015-03-01 23:33
Not of interest to anyone outside of JCU, just using my blog to list the workarounds for a local issue: <!--[if gte mso 9]> <![endif]--> <!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-AU X-NONE X-NONE <![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]>

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