The announcement yesterday of Olso public library’s new open-source linked data discovery interface comes just a few days after JSTOR unveiled their new prototype text analyzer. JSTOR’s text analyzer takes a piece of text or image and then extracts meaning from it, before finding recommendations from JSTOR for resources that might be relevant. It’s a simple process and there’s a neat interface showing the results on one side, with an easy route directly to the PDF of the article. The left hand side of the screen picks out the entities analysed from your text and gives a slider feature to let you adjust your results by giving more weight to some concepts than others.
I’ve not been able to find any detailed description of how it works but it looks very much like some form of semantic search feature, with processes in place to analyse the concepts in the submitted text and match them against the index of concepts from the JSTOR database. In a lot of ways it isn’t dissimilar to the DiscOU tool we used in the Stellar project (and that development made use of semantic technologies, with entity recognition, semantic indexes and a triple store).
Oslo’s linked data library system is a different approach, but again with linked data at the heart of the product. It’s open source and looks to be making use of Koha the open source library management system, so essentially acts as an add-on to that product. It has much the same clean look and feel of some of the latest commercial discovery products, with facets on the left and the main results on the right. It will be interesting to see how it develops.
It’s particularly interesting to see this new development and it’s a contrast to the approach from Folio who are building their open sourcce library management system, but currently seem not to be aiming to include a discovery interface. Makes me wonder about the potential of this development as the discovery interface for Folio?.