"The Librarian" - an instruction session in the style of "The Martian"

Posted on Thu 29 October 2015 in Libraries • Tagged with Coding, coding

I had fun today. A colleague in Computer Science has been giving his C++ students an assignment to track down an article that is only available in print in the library. When we chatted about it earlier this year, I suggested that perhaps he could bring me in as a …


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We screwed up: identities in loosely-coupled systems

Posted on Sun 04 October 2015 in misc • Tagged with Coding, coding

A few weeks ago, I came to the startling and depressing realization that we had screwed up. It started when someone I know and greatly respect ran into me in the library and said "We have a problem".

I'm the recently appointed Chair of our library and archives department, so …


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Research across the Curriculum

Posted on Wed 15 April 2015 in misc • Tagged with Coding, Libraries, coding, libraries

The following post dates back to January 15, 2007, when I had been employed at Laurentian for less than a year and was getting an institutional repository up and running.... I think old me had some interesting thoughts!

Abstract

The author advocates an approach to university curriculum that re-emphasizes the …


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Library and Archives Canada: Planning for a new union catalogue

Posted on Tue 03 March 2015 in Libraries • Tagged with Coding, Structured data, coding, structured data

Update 2015-03-03: Clarified (in the Privacy section) that only NRCan runs Evergreen.

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 …


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Library catalogues and HTTP status codes

Posted on Mon 29 December 2014 in Libraries • Tagged with Coding, Evergreen, coding, evergreen

I noticed in Google's Webmaster Tools that our catalogue had been returning some Soft 404s. Curious, I checked into some of the URIs suffering from this condition, and realized that Evergreen returns an HTTP status code of 200 OK when it serves up a record details page for a record …


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Dear database vendor: defending against sci-hub.org scraping is going to be very difficult

Posted on Wed 10 December 2014 in Libraries • Tagged with Coding, Libraries, coding, libraries

Our library receives formal communications from various content/database vendors about "serious intellectual property infringement" on a reasonably regular basis, that urge us to "pay particular attention to proxy security". Here is part of the response I sent to the most recent such request:

We use the UsageLimit directives that …


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Putting the "Web" back into Semantic Web in Libraries 2014

Posted on Thu 04 December 2014 in Linked Open Data • Tagged with Coding, Evergreen, Libraries, Structured data, coding, evergreen, libraries, structured data

I was honoured to lead a workshop and speak at this year's edition of Semantic Web in Bibliotheken (SWIB) in Bonn, Germany. It was an amazing experience; there were so many rich projects being described with obvious dividends for the users of libraries, once again the European library community fills …


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Social networking for researchers: ResearchGate and their ilk

Posted on Tue 18 November 2014 in misc • Tagged with Coding, Libraries, coding, libraries

The Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health asked me to give a lunch'n'learn presentation on ResearchGate today, which was a challenge I was happy to take on... but I took the liberty of stretching the scope of the discussion to focus on social networking in the context of …


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How discovery layers have closed off access to library resources, and other tales of schema.org from LITA Forum 2014

Posted on Sat 08 November 2014 in Libraries • Tagged with Coding, Evergreen, Structured data, coding, evergreen, structured data

At the LITA Forum yesterday, I accused (presentation) most discovery layers of not solving the discoverability problems of libraries, but instead exacerbating them by launching us headlong to a closed, unlinkable world. Coincidentally, Lorcan Dempsey's opening keynote contained a subtle criticism of discovery layers. I wasn't that subtle.

Here's why …


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DCMI 2014: schema.org holdings in open source library systems

Posted on Tue 14 October 2014 in Linked Open Data • Tagged with coding, evergreen, libraries, structured data

My slides from DCMI 2014: schema.org in the wild: open source libraries++.

Last week I was at the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative 2014 conference, where Richard Wallis, Charles MacCathie Nevile and I were slated to present on schema.org and the work of the W3C Schema.org Bibliographic Extension …


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