[OAI-implementers] Do you have instruction for ad hoc harvesters?

Conal Tuohy conal.tuohy at vuw.ac.nz
Thu Nov 22 21:19:11 EST 2007

On Thu, 2007-11-22 at 12:38 -0500, Caroline Arms wrote:
> At the Library of Congress we quite often get requests for the records for a collection of digitized historical materials from entities outside the library or digital repository community.    Typically, these are organizations that want to integrate a collection of photographs into an internal system for a particular project.  An example would be the production team for a TV documentary assembling an internal collection of records and images relevant to the topic to use as the basis for selection for use in the production and tracking of associated workflow.  When pointed at the OAI site, they are mystified.
> I am wondering whether we can create a quick how-to document tailored to this particular task that makes no assumptions about the technology at the other end.
> Does anyone have or know of a brief introduction aimed at someone who only needs to know enough about OAI-PMH to get the records for an entire set given its setSpec (having to deal with resumption tokens), but may need to be told soem other things, such as:
>   *  they will have to understand enough about the semantics of the metadata formats available to select the right metadata prefix 
>   *  they will probably need XML tools to transform the records into something compatible with their local system
>   *   etc., etc.
> If you have something like this written that has been used successfully, and would be prepared to share it, we would love to see it.

This is perhaps a bit tangential, but might be worth considering...

I've seen some OAI repositories which serve up their content with
<?xml-stylesheet?> processing instructions referring to XSLT stylesheets
which convert the XML into nice HTML pages which provide a nice friendly
user interface. You don't know you're dealing with an OAI server at all!
These XML processing instructions are ignored by real OAI harvesters,
but they are respected by ordinary web browsers, and they could provide
users with a simple way to select metadata formats, navigate through
sets, follow resumption tokens, etc, etc.

For instance, here's one here:



Conal Tuohy
New Zealand Electronic Text Centre

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