Enhancing Search Engines with Summon

 Posted by on February 27, 2013
Feb 272013
 

The very first version of LibX provided a cue on the google.com page that, when clicked, led to the user’s library catalog. While this cue is no longer shown, we now have an even cooler feature for those LibX editions that use Summon as their primary catalog.

LibX users have the option of viewing results from their Summon instance simultaneously when they search in  Google, Yahoo or Bing. Whenever a user searches for content in these popular search engines, the search is repeated in Summon so that the user can have Summon results, which includes carefully selected and licensed resources, at their fingertips. To avoid directing unnecessary traffic to Summon, the user can turn this feature off and on using a ‘research mode’ slider (use a single click on the slider).

If results are found, a popup appears with how many results were found; clicking on the popup leads the user to the results found, as shown below for Google, Yahoo, and Bing. As for other LibX Libapps that incorporate Summon, editions may use either the Summon Widget service or the Summon API (via proxy), as described here and here.

We can include this feature in other pages where cosearching Summon would make sense – let us know what these are!

Google.com


Bing.com

Yahoo.com
This feature has been developed by Anand Swaminathan (anand12100@gmail.com).

Enhancing Autolinking with Summon

 Posted by on February 27, 2013
Feb 272013
 

LibX has always supported autolinking for identifiers such as ISBNs, ISSNs, DOIs, and others.  When LibX believes that a page contains such identifiers, it will place a link where they are located on the page. Clicking on the link will lead the user to a search using that identifier in the edition’s primary catalog.  (The primary catalog is the one listed first in the list of catalogs by the edition maintainer.)

In addition, if the user hovers over the link, a tooltip appears that displays additional information about the item to which the identifier refers. LibX uses services such as xISBN, xISSN, or CrossRef’s and Pubmed’s APIs to retrieve metadata about the item, such as the title, author, publication year, and others.

LibX editions in which Summon is configured as the primary catalog will go even further: when the user hovers over the link, LibX will contact that library’s Summon instance to search for the item in Summon. The results of this search are directly displayed in the tooltip, as shown below.

To contact Summon, LibX has two options, which we call “Summon Widget” and “Summon API (via proxy)”.  The Summon Widget service is less detailed and does not show circulation information, but can be used immediately by any Summon customer.  The Summon API (via proxy) requires an API key and it requires that you run our proxy on your machines where the API key is located, but it provides more detailed information. The Summon API also requires that the URL of the Summon proxy be included in the edition configuration.

Please note that the enhanced autolinking feature is available only if Summon is configured as an edition’s primary (i.e., first) catalog. (Otherwise, the autolink would lead to a different location than what appears in the tooltip, misleading the user).

The enhanced autolinking feature was developed by Anand Swaminathan (anand12100@gmail.com).

Below are screenshots for autolinks around ISBN, ISSN, DOIs, and Pubmed Ids found on different pages. Note that for ISBNs, LibX searches Summon for all editions listed by the xISBN service, not just the one hyperlinked. The screenshots show the results when the Summon Widget service is used.

Autolinks for ISBN

Autolinks for ISSN

Autolinks for DOI

Autolinks for PubMed

How to set up LibX with the Summon API

 Posted by on June 25, 2012
Jun 252012
 

A key goal of LibX 2.0 is to integrate with services such as Summon, which provides an API. Whereas LibX 1.5 mostly provided links a user could click on to initiate a search, LibX 2.0 aims to provide the resulting information directly to the user.

To contact Summon, LibX has two options, which we call “Summon Widget” and “Summon API (via proxy)”.  The Summon Widget service is less detailed and does not show circulation information, but can be used immediately by any Summon customer.  The Summon API (via proxy) requires an API key and it requires that you run our proxy on your machines where the API key is located, but it provides more detailed information. The Summon API also requires that the URL of the Summon proxy be included in the edition configuration.

An example is shown in this short screencast (0:47) which demonstrates live how Summon is contacted when the user hovers over an autolinked ISBN, as shown below:

 

If your institution subscribes to Summon, your edition can make use of these services as well.

As pointed out above, nothing needs to be done if you’re content with using the Summon Widget API, except you must make sure that Summon appears in the first position in the list of catalogs.

If you wish to use the more detailed Summon API (via proxy), you are required to install a proxy service that LibX can contact to search Summon via the API. Unfortunately, such a proxy is necessary because accessing Summon via the API requires a key, and this key must be hosted securely on a server belonging to your institution. Fortunately, it is very easy to set up. All you need is an Apache server that can run PhP scripts, and you’re good to go. All you need to do is to drop the PhP scripts provided into some directory, add the key. Full  instructions are on this page.

Then, you’ll have to tell LibX where to find the service. This is also described there.

If anything isn’t working, don’t hesitate to contact us at libx.org@gmail.com

If you have ideas where to include Summon results, let us know!