Four from OCLC


Peter Binkley wrote in to oss4lib-discuss about OCLC's Software page, listing four open source efforts from their Office of Research. They are ALCME, the Advanced Library Collection Management Environment, for OAI-compliant collections; Pears, a text storage and indexing system; GWEN, a database search engine with an interface to Pears, and dbutils, utilities for database programming.

Nice to see OCLC stepping up to the plate; all code is apparently available from cvs, and their license, while requiring modifiers to contribute code, appears reasonable (though ianal).



from the Koha list: "This will be the last release before we start adding MARC support... This release is mainly bug fixes. The new functionality is a script that when added to you apache config can
provide koha in different languages. Please read the scripts/translator/translator.readme file for more details.



Congrats to the folks over at Technology Resource Foundation for actually delivering a Technical Beta Preview of OpenBook roughly upon their promised date. It looks to be an already working system, guaranteed to wow (if the OSSIG session at ALA last month is an accurate gauge), if still at the to-be-expected not-fully-polished state of an 0.8 release.

OpenBook is a Koha-inspired, GPL-licensed system, apparently rewritten from scratch in more than 20k lines of php. [Update 2001-7-16: see this post on the Koha list for TRF's announcement and more explanation of the relationship between OpenBook and Koha. -dc]



from freshmeat, changes include: "Password encryption, clients can ask for passwords interactively, simplified user management, and changes to the client-server dialog protocol (old clients won't work with the new application server and vice versa). Precompiled Cygwin binaries are also available." Read more at



from the pybliographer site: "It provides a new displayer for the entries, based on GtkHTML (if it is compiled in your gnome-python), fixes problems with author initials formatting and saving of referenced entries, and improves robustness on some points (file saving,...). Oh, by the way, use recode 3.5 exclusively. Later versions are a bit broken for use with pybliographer." The list announcement also mentioned new support for ISI.

Simple Multi Target Z39.50 search portal - beta 1

Ian writes: "An initial beta release of the SimpleWebApp component of JZKit is now available for download, evaluation and feedback. JZKit is a 100% pure java (GPL'd) Z3950 tookit with no proprietary component dependencies. The SimpleWebApp application is an experiment in creating a pure java Z39.50 portal capable of searching multiple targets and displaying full or breif records with formatting defined by XSL style sheets. An online demo can be seen here and any comments would be welcome. The application is 100% pure java and is deployed as a .war file. Some minor tomcat configuration is needed to get everything working. You can read about the installation here (There are a few screen shots here too). As always, you can get all the source from Sourceforge."

Olivet's Open Source Projects


Craighton writes about three new packages from Olivet Nazarene University Benner Library, all of which are available on their Open Source Projects page:

The Web Access Reserve Program (WARP) is a Perl script that will organize electronic reserve files by professor name and class number, and make uploading files to the web server a click and drag operation.

ILLWizard 1.0 is an ISO-10161-compliant, OCLC-Direct-Request-compatible ILL Web form that is easily customizable by non-technical librarians. This Java applet can be customized by changing the program parameters in the html file.

Joe's ILL OCLC Macro Language macros will move the data in interlibrary loan email requests from email into OCLC ILL module workforms in Passport software.



from freshmeat: "RefDB is a reference database and bibliography tool for DocBook SGML and XML documents. This is an attempt to provide most of the functionality of commercial packages like Reference Manager or EndNote in a platform-independent tool, targeting DocBook rather than word processors." This version's changes include bugfixes, build improvements, better error reporting and output.

Larry Wall at Open Source IG Program at ALA


Jeremy writes: "Larry Wall, inventer and maintainer of the PERL language, will be the keynote speaker at this year's Open Source program at ALA in San Francisco. The program takes place Sunday morning, 8:30, at the Marriot Golden Gate Section B. We have a very exciting lineup, with not only Larry, but also Eric Lease Morgan (MyLibrary@NCState), and William Scholten (Executive Director of the Waitt Family Foundation Technology Resource Center)."

Greenstone 2.35

Gordon writes: "Version 2.35 of Greenstone adds many plugin enhancements, including bzip2 support, improved PDF and Word document handling, an updated ImagePlug (Unix only) and optional XML files for adding extra metadata. A Russian translation of the user interface has been added. Documents are now stored as XML. Greenstone now works on MacOS X (or any POSIX system), and the new CORBA interface gives other programs access Greenstone collections."