> We're using maybe 1% of the spec for 99% of our practice, > probably because librarians weren't imaginative (as Jim > Weinheimer would say) enough to think of other use cases > beyond that most pressing one.
I would suggest it's more because, once you step outside of the primary use case for OpenURL, you end-up bumping into *other* standards. Dorthea'sblog post that Jakob referenced in his message is a good example of that. She was trying to use OpenURL (via COINS) to get data into Zotero. Mid-way through the post she wonders if maybe she should have gone with unAPI instead. And, in fact, I think that would have been a better approach. unAPI is better at doing that particular task than OpenURL. And I think that may explain why OpenURL hasn't become the One Standard to Rule Them All, even though it kind of presents itself that way. --Dave ================== David Walker Library Web Services Manager California State University http://xerxes.calstate.edu ________________________________________ From: Code for Libraries [code4...@listserv.nd.edu] On Behalf Of MJ Suhonos [...@suhonos.ca] Sent: Thursday, April 29, 2010 5:17 AM To: CODE4LIB@LISTSERV.ND.EDU Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] Twitter annotations and library software Okay, I know it's cool to hate on OpenURL, but I feel I have to clarify a few points: > OpenURL is of no use if you seperate it from the existing infrastructure > which is mainly held by companies. No sane person will try to build an open > alternative infrastructure because OpenURL is a crapy library-standard like > MARC etc. OpenURL is mostly implemented by libraries, yes, but it isn't necessarily *just* a library standard - this is akin to saying that Dublin Core is a library standard. Only sort of. The other issue I have is that — although Jonathan used the term to make a point — OpenURL is *not* an infrastructure, it is a protocol. Condemning the current OpenURL infrastructure (which is mostly a vendor-driven oligopoly) is akin to saying in 2004 that HTTP and HTML sucks because Firefox hadn't been released yet and all we had was IE6. Don't condemn the standard because of the implementation. > The OpenURL specification is a 119 page PDF - that alone is a reason to run > away as fast as you can. The main reason for this is because OpenURL can do much, much, much more than the simple "resolve a unique copy" use case that libraries use it for. We're using maybe 1% of the spec for 99% of our practice, probably because librarians weren't imaginative (as Jim Weinheimer would say) enough to think of other use cases beyond that most pressing one. I'd contend that OpenURL, like other technologies (<cough> XML) is greatly misunderstood, and therefore abused, and therefore discredited. I think there is also often confusion between the KEV schemas and OpenURL itself (which is really what Dorothea's blog rant is about); I'm certainly guilty of this myself, as Jonathan can attest. You don't *have* to use the KEVs with OpenURL, you can use anything, including eg. Dublin Core. > If a twitter annotation setup wants to get adopted than it should not be > build on a crapy complex library standard like OpenURL. I don't quite understand this (but I think I agree) — twitter annotation should be built on a data model, and then serialized via whatever protocols make sense (which may or may not include OpenURL). > I must admit that this solution is based on the open assumption that CSL > record format contains all information needed for OpenURL which may not the > case. > … A good example. And this is where you're exactly right that we need better tools, namely OpenURL resolvers which can do much more than they do now. I've had the idea for a number of years now that OpenURL functionality should be merged into aggregation / discovery layer (eg. OAI harvester)-type systems, because, like OAI-PMH, OpenURL can *transport metadata*, we just don't use it for that in practice. A ContextObject is just a triple that makes a single assertion about two entities (resources): that A "references" B. Just like an RDF statement using <http://purl.org/dc/terms/references>, but with more focus on describing the entities rather than the assertion. Maybe if I put it that way, OpenURL sounds a little less crappy. MJ