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VuFind Developers Call Minutes: May 15, 2012

Attending: Filipe Bento, Demian Katz, Benjamin Mosior, Tod Olson


1. New/Updated JIRA Tickets

  • VUFIND-50 - Now that VuFind 2 has theme switching, this ticket has been closed.
  • VUFIND-180 - Some possible approaches to consortial support in VuFind 2 have been posted in a Google doc linked here.
  • VUFIND-318 - Progress has been made on the patch to allow more configurable book preview options. Demian plans to commit it soon.
  • VUFIND-386 - The Aleph driver on this ticket has been updated once again.
  • VUFIND-419 - Support for the XHPRof Profiler has now been built into VuFind 2.0.
  • VUFIND-538 - The authority recommendation module has been committed. In combination with the free FAST data released by OCLC, this is very powerful; it makes “subject” search much more useful than before. Demian plans to do some work on improving recommendation module documentation to make this all easier to understand/configure.
  • VUFIND-561 - Al has posted his inter-library borrowing patch for the VuFind ILS driver here; this patch includes his version of the Aleph driver. Demian will try to commit this as soon as the “multiple Aleph drivers” problem can be satisfactorily resolved.
  • VUFIND-570 - This is a task-oriented ticket for the discussion of creating a shared index of open access content that could be used to augment VuFind instances.
  • VUFIND-571 - This ticket suggests a feature to allow a user to immediately edit their advanced search if it fails to yield any results.
  • VUFIND-572 - This ticket suggests a feature to convert the current basic search into an advanced search so that additional refinements can be added.
  • VUFIND-573 - Filipe suggested improvements to VuFind's use of the NLM metadata format from OJS; Demian has committed most of these changes.
  • VUFIND-574 - This ticket proposes a strategy for lazy-loading MARC records in search results if MARC content is not needed to render every result. Demian does not plan to commit since the default VuFind configuration requires loading of all records… but the patch here may be useful for some users with custom use cases.
  • VUFIND-575 - This ticket points out a limitation of the install script: there may be problems with special characters in MySQL passwords. Demian has committed fixes for VuFind 1.x and 2.0.
  • VUFIND-576 - This ticket reports a problem with harvesting arxiv.org records using OAI; the problem had to do with 503 “retry later” responses. Demian has posted and committed a patch which adds support to the harvester.
  • VUFIND-577 - This ticket provides a mechanism for returning to mobile mode from standard mode when a mobile device is detected; Demian will test and commit soon.
  • VUFIND-578 - This ticket proposes a new recommendation module to provide subject summaries similar to the current Wikipedia author module. Benjamin might be interested in helping implement this – he will bring it up with librarians for feedback.

2. VuFind 2.0 Update

Demian has ported the support for Solr sharding to VuFind 2. The new implementation differs from the 1.x version in some important ways:

  • The shard-related configuration has been moved from config.ini to searches.ini; these are not really global configuration settings, and it makes more sense to localize them to a specific module. That way, each module can have its own shard configuration as needed.
  • The [StripFacets] section of facets.ini has been eliminated because it is redundant – facet stripping can be addressed by the same values in the [StripFields] section of searches.ini.
  • The old implementation persisted user-selected shards in the session, which meant that URL-sharing could have unpredictable results; the new implementation persists shards through GET parameters for bookmarkable URLs.
  • Sharding has been built into the Search Object data model. This means that non-Solr modules can use the sharding mechanism if they have an equivalent feature (i.e. multiple databases in EBSCO, multiple sources in a federated search, etc., etc.).

Batch delete/import scripts for use with OAI harvesting are now updated to account for VuFind 2's local directory mechanism.

Demian has finished porting the upgrade scripts (which now run through the browser rather than from the command line) and added sorting capabilities to favorites lists and tags (which allow cross-module sorting with the help of new MySQL fields, so you can sort results even if they came from multiple places, like Solr and Summon).

Mobile device detection has been implemented along with some new mechanisms for specifying alternate themes and allowing the user to switch between them. Additionally, Demian has begun porting the jquerymobile theme to VuFind 2.

Demian has also been watching Zend Framework 2 development since the ZF1-based VuFind 2 prototype is so close to completion. Still no firm release date, but the FAQ suggests it will be done this summer, and it also mentions a compatibility layer which should help ease the transition from the existing codebase. There will still be a lot of changes to the VuFind code base while we move to the newer code, but hopefully the development branch will remain functional through the migration.

Chris has continued working on statistics.

Remaining items on the VuFind 2 to-do list: Finish mobile theme, finish statistics, port remaining ILS drivers, implement PostgreSQL support. If anyone is able to help with any of this (particularly ILS driver testing), please let Demian know.

3. New Mobile Theme

No news (apart from the above).

4. VuFind Developers Summit 2012

We have received our first request for travel funding. If you need travel assistance, please contact Demian as soon as possible while funds are still available.

A conference planning meeting will take place this Thursday at Villanova; hopefully there will be more announcements shortly after that.

5. VuFind Hierarchical Collections Update

No news from Demian.

6. Open Data / Shared Central Index

This subject will be deferred to the next call in hope of larger attendance.

7. Other Topics?

Demian showed a demo of FAST data loaded at Villanova.

Next Call

The next call will be Tuesday, May 29, 2012 at 10am Eastern Daylight Time (14:00 GMT).

developers_call/minutes20120515.txt · Last modified: 2015/12/14 17:03 by demiankatz