Sunday, January 25, 2009

IslandScholar, UPEI's Institutional Repository

One of the things I appreciate about working in an environment where we use and create open source software is that I have the opportunity to talk about what I do outside of work. Unfortunately I just haven't had the blogging spirit much in general lately, so there are a lot of things I haven't gotten to write about yet.

Fortunately Mark Leggott, our university librarian, who directs all the projects I work on, just posted a great write-up about IslandScholar, which was launched in December. The post is here: Link. Mark outlines exactly what the repository is for and what we used to build it, in particular it is our most polished and customized use of the Islandora front-end to the Fedora repository system, written as a module for Drupal.

Mark's post describes it better than I would, but the gist is that IslandScholar will be a central location to show the research output of the entire UPEI faculty and related bodies, with as many as possible containing links to full-text versions of the published articles. We are using a form of crowd sourcing in that faculty can go to the site and view their own citations, and are able to upload the referenced documents directly to the site, with the rights from their journal publisher shown to them right on the page via SHERPA/RoMEO, and the system will automatically convert their documents to PDF format and ingest them into the repository.

Here's an example record with a full-text document included: Relationship between objective measures of physical activity and weather: a longitudinal study.

I really like the idea that we are helping to make information more readily available to the rest of the world. Getting to not only work on and create open source software, but to be furthering the philosophy of open access to information is quite a thrill as a software developer.

More big news to come, hopefully. But either way I'll try and be more informative about what I am working on on this blog.

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By al - 9:26 a.m. |

wow. your job sounds perfectly fantastic. it makes me really happy whenever you write about your work. i don't always follow precisely what you are writing about.. but that doesn't really matter.

to have a job that creates something in an attempt to make the world a better place. dude. that's just awesome.
Being a great programmer helps a lot too :-)

I is use Linux Ubuntu with the Amarok and Tunapie etc very appreciate the good workings you people is do.
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