November 9, 2009 1 Comment
This is a bit of a trailer for our shiny new interface that I hope will go live in the next week or so and a run down of some of the new features.
It’s far from perfect and should still be seen as a beta – we very much need real users to start using it and I’m feeling a little nervous about how it will be received as I know how much work Mike, in particular, has put into it.
The interface has evolved from an SRU client developed for by IRISS – http://www.iriss.org.uk/learnx – which is available under GNU General Public Licence v.3 at http://code.google.com/p/sruopensearch/ (N.B. We still intend to release our modified code under a similar licence.) Learning Exchange Open Search is a great front end for searching intraLibrary but with just a simple search box lacked advanced search functionality that was essential for us. We also wanted to use intraLibrary to manage resources for teaching & learning aswell as facilitating Open Access to our research collection in accordance with the EPrints model.
The tabbed interface incorporates an “Advanced search” form that allows users to cross reference multiple fields specifying AND/OR and they are also able to search for either “Research” or “Open Educational Resources” which uses authentication tokens to return results from the appropriate collections in intraLibrary:
There are also big changes in the way that results are returned; Mike has been able to use a unique identifier to build individual pages for each record so that a search will return a set of results that indicates whether or not each individual record has the full text available:
These titles then link through to a static HTML page comprising all of the metadata associated with that record including a published URL and, where the full text is available, a link to the PDF in intraLibrary:
This static page should be indexed more effectively than was the case before though there is one small fly left in the ointment in that the public URL generated by intraLibrary that is used to download the full text is dynamic which means it cannot be indexed by Google; I’m not sure if it will be possible for Intrallect to do anything about this though they are aware of the need for full text indexing and are looking into the problem.