About the project

The Pode-project looks at new ways of using metadata found in library catalogues, in particular ways of mashing the catalogue content with other “mashable” resources.

In addition, the project looks into the possibilities and challenges the web technologies provide in relation to today’s systems and practices.

We have used traditional protocols provided by the ILS vendors as well as converting and finetuning data for frbrization and in order to provide Linked library data.

Access to metadata: openness and systems
One condition for creating mashups is access to metadata, in our case catalogue data. Libraries have had online catalogues for a long time and protocols for exchanging data have been standardized for some time.

In Norway, the SRU-protocol has received much attention over the last couple of years especially in relation to mashups. However, few ILS’ have implemented this protocol; most systems still use the Norwegian profile of the z39.50 protocol.

Though most systems offer the z39.50, not all libraries have implemented the server, which will be a challenge in regards to creating independent mashups. Another challenge is that international systems, such as Aleph, do not support the Norwegian profile of the protocol.

The mashups: Trip planner and Music mash
The idea behind the trip planner is taken from the reference desk were we often get questions from patrons wanting additional literature from a destination. The idea is to link travel guides to information from both external and internal sources. For instance, a person travelling to Barcelona might find a Catalan language course and stories set in Barcelona useful.

The idea behind the music mash is to provide illustrations to the music catalogue and use the get recommendations based on similar artists and albums functionality taken from LastFM.

A caution with regards to mashing lots of content is the information overload. Our experience with the library catalogue is that too much information puts people off and there is no point adding more just because we can.

VuFind and Norwegian OPACs
We have tested the open search interface VuFind and compared it to the Norwegian ILS OPACs. Our installation of VuFind indexes an export of Oslo Public Librarys catalogue as of January 2010.

You can read more about our findings on our blog.

FRBRization of NORMARC-records
With the help of Professor Trond Aalberg we frbrized four authors using the same tool he used frbrizing other library catalogues.

The tool converts MARC records to FRBR based on rules one can adjust for each dataset. One goal was to test how "FRBR friendly" our catalogue is, and what is required in order to create a frbrized presentation of our current catalogue.

You can read more about our findings on our blog.

Linked data: Linked authors and Linked Non-fiction
We have converted two sets of MARC-records to RDF in order to provide parts our catalogue as Linked data.

The first dataset consists of the frbrized recordset of Knut Hamsun and Per Petterson.

Converting the datasets to RDF format and linking the data to other sources, resulted in a simple web application that demonstrates how library records can be grouped and browsed by FRBR entities Work, Expression and Manifestation.

Works were linked to instances in DBpedia and Project Gutenberg, while persons were linked to instances in DBpedia and VIAF. This allowed the application to display biographical information about the authors as well as linking to digital full text versions of the works.

The second dataset consists of the non-fiction collection at The Multilingual Library. The web application presents the catalogue data combined with OCLCs Dewey Summaries which provides access to the top three levels of the Dewey Decimal Classification in eleven languages as linked data, amongst them Norwegian!

The application is a browsable entry to the non-fiction collection, as the user can click on a topic to see the underlying topics on level two and three.

By using the Lexvo dataset for language identifiers, it is possible to filter the display of documents by selecting language from a list that contains the languages represented in the bibliographic records.

Our papers


  • "The key to the library catalogue is openness". Will be published in the april issue of Computers in libraries.
  • Article to be published in Nodalities magazine
  • Article to be published in Managing Information

The projected is initiated and funded by The Norwegian Archive, Library and Museum Authority (ABM-utvikling), The Library Laboratory (Biblioteklaboratoriet) and Oslo Public Library (Deichmanske bibliotek).

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Contact us
If you have input or questions regarding the project, please do not hesitate to contact us!