[OAI-implementers] repository auto-discovery

Edward Summers ehs at pobox.com
Sat Nov 18 20:12:37 EST 2006

On Nov 18, 2006, at 11:28 AM, Robert Forkel wrote:

> i was wondering whether some sort of oai data provider auto-discovery
> should be part of the protocol? the way this is done for
> http://unapi.info/ seems pretty reasonable to me: just provide the
> base url of the data provider as href attribute of a link element and
> signal oai identifiers within the pages.
> does that sound reasonable? if so, should it be part of the protocol
> or rather an implementation guideline?

I totally agree. As a thought experiment imagine if PubMedCentral [1]  
search results had:

   <link rel="alternate" type="application/oai-pmh+xml" href="http:// 

and had marked up search hits like:

   <span id="oai:pubmedcentral.gov:13900">Comparison of written  
reports of mammography, sonography and magnetic resonance mammography  
for preoperative evaluation of breast lesions, with special emphasis  
on magnetic resonance mammography</span>

This would enable in browser applications and citation manager like  
Zotero [2] to query and use rich types of metadata from the oai-pmh  
server. Having an established and predictable way to do this as part  
of the specification seems like the right way to encourage  


[1] http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/
[2] http://www.zotero.org/

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