First objective of the JISC-supported Sonex initiative was to identify and analyse deposit opportunities (use cases) for ingest of research papers (and potentially other scholarly work) into repositories. Later on, the project scope widened to include identification and dissemination of various projects being developed at institutions in relation to the deposit usecases previously analyzed. Finally, Sonex was recently asked to extend its analysis of deposit opportunities to research data.

Friday 3 September 2010

RepoFringe 2010: lots of interesting presentations plus a Sonex Pecha Kucha

The 3rd edition of the Repository Fringe was just held in Edinburgh along Sep 2nd and 3rd 2010. This new edition of the RepoFringe (see programme) was a good opportunity to learn about the most recent advancements regarding repositories in the UK, and new ideas for their development were shared in an informal, stimulating atmosphere. This edition's success story was undoubtedly EPrints Bazaar app-store for its new version 3.2, as live demoed by David Tarrant and Patrick McSweeney, with Les Carr's cooperation as an inspired pre-recorded speaker. EPrints will also shortly release its CERIF4REF plugin in order to comply with the R4R schema, thus proving that repository software is swiftly progressing towards anticipating user needs by closing the gap with CRIS systems from a research output perspective.

Further talks were also held at RF2010 on CRIS systems and IRs. A lot of universities do already have CRIS systems running, and some voices in the community start wondering whether CRIS systems might eventually replace institutional repositories as an "entrance door" to the institutional research output. Projects like RePosit (see Queen Mary University of London Sara Molloy's presentation for more info) on the contrary are exploring ways for batch ingestion of contents flowing from CRIS systems into a currently low-populated array of repositories.

Quite a number of other subjects were amusingly dealt with by other speakers, such as timestamping the web through the Memento project as presented by Herbert van de Sompel (LANL), Topic Models by Michael Fourman (University of Edinburgh Informatics Dept), or Repositories and data at Closing Keynote by Kevin Ashley (DCC).

RF2010 had also its traditional 20-slide-20-secs-per-slide Pecha Kucha sessions once again. There was a Pecha Kucha on the work by Sonex on Fri Sep 3rd, and projects like Enlighten, Jorum, Open Access Repository Junction, ERA, ShareGeo and some others were represented at this light speed presentation variety as well.

On Sep 1st a SHERPA RoMEO API workshop was also held by Peter Millington, Jane H. Smith and colleagues from Nottingham at the e-Science Institute facilities in Edinburgh as a RepoFringe pre-event. As presented last July at Open Repositories Conference in Madrid, major improvements in the RoMEO service are being worked at, and this workshop was an opportunity to get feedback from the RoMEO API users on its performance and suggestions on possible enhancements for version 3 currently in its final stages of development (due Autumn 2010). There were also interesting presentations from outside the UK on the implementation of RoMEO mirrors such as SHERPA RoMEO deutsch in Germany and service internationalisation was extensively discussed along the meeting (Portugal and Spain were scoped as potential areas for development of specific interfaces). An online survey on the RoMEO API was previously distributed among the workshop delegates and its results were discussed and analysed in fruitful specific breakout sessions.

From a Sonex perspective, the RoMEO service does fit into the Sonex proposal for a distributed national- or regional-level automatic ingest system based on an array of brokers dealing with publisher- or funder-driven ingest of contents into a network of national or regional institutional repositories. From this point of view, RoMEO, such as other general-purpose services as OpenDOAR or the broker itself, are pieces of the required infrastructure for this approach to grow real. Find more information about this Sonex proposal in the Sonex paper 'Handling Repository-Related Interoperability Issues: the SONEX Workgroup' to be presented in Glasgow later this month at the 2nd workshop "Making Digital Libraries interoperable: challenges and approaches".

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