More Library Mashups now published #mashlib

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Nicole Engard has published a new edition of her Library Mashups book (More Library Mashups). It includes chapters on tools people can use to create data mashups for libraries and information services, as well as examples of a wide range of actual library data mashups and details about how they were created.

The full run-down of the chapters appear below, so you can get an idea of what is covered. I’ll include a disclaimer here and say I’m fortunate to have a chapter about ifttt.com included in the book too. In fact, it’s also included as a free sample chapter.

  • IFTTT Makes Data Play Easy (Gary Green)
  • The Non-Developer’s Guide to Creating Map Mashups (Eva Dodsworth)
  • OpenRefine(ing) and Visualizing Library Data (Martin Hawksey)
  • Umlaut: Mashing Up Delivery and Access (Jonathan Rochkind)
  • Building a Better Library Calendar With Drupal and Evanced Events (Kara Reuter and Stefan Langer)
  • An API of APIs: A Content Silo Mashup for Library Websites (Sean Hannan)
  • Curating API Feeds to Display Open Library Book Covers in Subject Guides (Rowena McKernan)
  • Searching Library Databases Through Twitter (Bianca Kramer)
  • Putting Library Catalog Data on the Map (Natalie Pollecutt)
  • Mashups and Next Generation Catalog at Work (Anne-Lena Westrum and Asgeir Rekkavik)
  • Delivering Catalog Records Using Wikipedia Current Awareness (Natalie Pollecutt)
  • Mashups and Next Generation Catalog at Work (Anne-Lena Westrum and Asgeir Rekkavik)
  • Delivering Catalog Records Using Wikipedia Current Awareness (Natalie Pollecutt)
  • Telling Stories With Google Maps Mashups (Olga Buchel)
  • Visualizing a Collection Using Interactive Maps (Francine Berish and Sarah Simpkin)
  • Creating Computer Availability Maps (Scott Bacon)
  • Getting Digi With It: Using TimelineJS to Transform Digital Archival Collections (Jeanette Claire Sewell)
  • BookMeUp: Using HTML5, Web Services, and Location-Based Browsing to Build a Book Suggestion App (Jason Clark)
  • Stanford’s SearchWorks: Mashup Discovery for Library Collections (Bess Sadler)
  • Libki and Koha: Leveraging Open Source Software for Single Sign-on Integration (Kyle M. Hall)
  • Disassembling the ILS: Using MarcEdit and Koha to Leverage System APIs to Develop Custom Workflows (Terry Reese)
  • Mashing Up Information to Stay on Top of News (Celine Kelly)
  • A Mashup in One Week: The Process Behind Serendip-o-matic (Meghan Frazer)

I’m looking froward to receiving my copy and I’m sure I’ll be reporting back on some of the ideas featured in it.

WordPress snapshot cards created in Processing

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I’ve been getting to grips with Processing lately. Apart from creating a couple of small games and a handful of generative images I’ve also been experimenting with data feeds. One of the ideas I had was to create a visual card for WordPress blogs based on the content in them. I wanted the cards to give a snapshot of the blog at that specific time, and also reflect the content of the data feed visually.

twist2-000001The background of the card is generated by the program and contains either stripes or circles and the colour and size of the stripes/circles depends upon the size of the blog post title.

It also displays the title of the blog and the url, which it takes from whatever WordPress RSS you put in there.

Automated keyword tagging has been an interest of mine for some time (as some of my Yahoo pipe experiments have shown) and in this program I pull out all of the words in the description field of the feed and then rank the most mentioned words. I also filtered out unwanted words with a stopword list. It’s interesting to see the words that crop up the most, although as a second stage I’m considering stemming words, because for example both “library” and “libraries” appears in the top 10 words in my blog and I would reduce this problem of closely related words appearing.

When you run the program each top keyword is displayed separately for a few seconds (starting with the most popular) and then it moves onto the next one.

So, here are a couple of examples from this blog and also the Voices for the Library site.

twist-000001  voices-000001 voices3-000001The aim is really just to give a simple idea of what people might find on the blog – a simple taster of it, with a bit of creativity thrown in.

I’d like to develop the idea further – include more detail and possibly have quotes and images from the blogs, as well as using more data from the feed to generate the background. I’m also thinking that if I focused on just library and information service based blogs it might be a good idea to create a dictionary of terms to compare against, as well as having the top 10 words.

Anyway, I like the way they’ve turned out so far.

Spend Love Index: Idea for National Hack the Government event #NHTG14

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This weekend Rewired State are running a National Hack the Government event around the UK. I won’t be attending, but I thought I’d submit an idea that those attending might want to work on.

I called it the Spend Quality Index, and the idea is to see if a council’s spend on a service is proportional to the social media love it receives in response to that service?

Steps involved could be:

  1. Take the budget figures for a specific council service (eg Fakeshire Council Library Service).
  2. Collect all mentions of Fakeshire’s Library Service across various social media channels, extracting the user sentiment ie happy; unhappy; angry.
  3. Do the same for all Library Services across England.
  4. Produce a sliding scale of happiness/satisfaction with the services based on funding & sentiment.

Budget figures could be taken from CIPFA annual library stats and sentiment analysis APIs could be used.

Disclaimers

I know this isn’t a scientific approach and I don’t expect the results to be taken seriously – it’s about looking at things in a different way.

I chose libraries because that’s the sector I work in, and it isn’t me pointing fingers at library services who have made cuts.

Try These ifttt Alternatives

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If you find ifttt useful you might want to take a look at these services too.

Zapier
WeWiredWeb
Elastic.io
Cloudwork

It might be that you like the look of ifttt, but it doesn’t quite suit your needs or the way you work, or it doesn’t connect channels that you use. If that’s the case maybe one of these services will suit you instead.

Out of the five, I’d say Zapier and WeWiredWeb were the most similar to ifttt. Zapier appears to be able to connect the most channels.

List of Library and Book APIs on Programmable Web #mashlib

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List of Library and Book APIs on Programmable Web #mashlib

Programmable Web have published an article about the library and book APIs/mashups listed on their site – 49 APIs in total are listed. It gives details of what each of the APIs do and the data formats and communication protocols they use. Handy information for the Mashed Library community.

Information Twist Intro

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(Image generated at Text-Image.com)

This blog is about presenting information – whether it’s “here’s a useful thing for you to look at”, doing something different with information, “wouldn’t it be good if?” and also library related ideas. I’m a librarian, computer fiddler (does a bit of programming), amateur musician, fan of retro video games and sci-fi / horror and I imagine that will come across here.

When I talk about information, I’m not just talking about words on a piece of paper or numbers in a spreadsheet. I’m talking about anything that can tell people something about a situation. Words, numbers, images, sounds, etc.

So come with me to No.1 Information-Twist House. What do you mean, “You don’t want to go.” Come on… I’ll pay you a nice shiny farthing if you do.

(edited 15/01/2010)