Open Source Systems for Libraries Swicki

A Swicki is community powered search engine that tailors the results to produce targeted search results for the community. The search results from a swicki is more focused than a general search engine and can learn and adapt, anonymously and automatically, based on the search behavior of the community.

A swicki can also be trained. Sites that are useful can be promoted and those not relevant can be excluded. A “buzz cloud” provides a swarm of words that are hot in the community. The search results from a swicki are more focused than a general search engine and they will continue to learn and adapt, anonymously and automatically, based on the search behavior of the community.

In support of the OSS4Lib community I created the Open Source Systems for Libraries swicki.

Species Toolkit


B. writes: "The All Species Toolkit is an integrated suite of applications which catalogue the work of the taxonomic community, and help taxonomists disseminate information about themselves and the species of their interest. These tools are the Species Toolkit search engine, Species page editor, Taxonomist pages, registration system and posting boards, and Specimen Browser. More information about the applications in the toolkit can be found in this application overview."

Brushtail - an open source library intranet

anon writes: "Brushtail is an open source library intranet. Runs on PHP/MySQL. Includes a CMS, events bookings, PC bookings, IT jobsheet, reference database, casual staff listing, hours available noticboard, document uploads and more. Developed specifically for public libraries."

Askal (Ask a Librarian) offline temporarily


Marc writes: "The Ask a Librarian project listed under oss4lib's project is currently undergoing a major revision and is temporarily unavailable. The new version will be released shortly."

LibData: web authoring tools for libraries


Paul writes: "The University of Minnesota Libraries Digital Library Development Lab has been working for three years on a library-centric authoring tool for building subject pathfinders, authoring course-related web pages, and general all-purpose pages. The project was written (simply and well-documented) around linux/apache/mySQL/PHP. It's about 34,000 lines of code and utilizes 40 underlying tables. It's being presented this week at the annual Digital Library Federation conference in New Mexico. See the site for (GPL) license details, documentation, and download."



Donna at Access '03 suggested we post OpenAAQ (Open Ask A Question); from the project page: "OAAQ is a web based virtual reference application for libraries. It is a basic trouble ticket system applied to library reference questions that supports collaborative management of answers in a multi- sector/institution/department." This is in wide use in Alberta, and if you goooogle openaaq you can poke into some implementors' support pages.


Kelsey writes: "ResearchGuide is an open-source application, implemented using PHP/MySQL, that helps librarians make subject guides and specialist information pages using Web forms (no HTML necessary). A benefit of this approach is that guides in different subjects are integrated into one web environment. Each has a similar look and feel but guide contents are customizable. Change the appearance of all guides by making edits in just two files -- the php file that generates the guides and a CSS stylesheet."



Mac writes: "The University Library, University of Nebraska at Omaha, makes available a GPL version of its Ask A Librarian (Askal). Utilizing PHP4 and mySQL, the application is suitable for low to medium volume services. Features include service management functions, standard replies (canned responses), extensive reports and a quality feedback system for service customers."

Reference Desk Manager

Matt writes: "Welcome to the Reference Desk Manager (RDM) home page. The RDM is a PHP based web application, specifically designed to meet the needs of Reference Services. The RDM was initially developed at Oregon State University for use by our Reference Services staff. The code is being supplied as is, without warranty, for use and further development. For more information, please see the RDM Licensing. Moreover, as developments are made to the RDM codebase, they will be posted here for download. Feel free to offer suggests or improvements as well as any bug reports that you may find.

Instant Messaging Reference software


Jody writes: "Check out Morris Library's instant messaging reference software. It has all of the major features of commercial library chat software except for co-browsing/escorting. So far, it has had no technical difficulties and is lightning quick, even through a dialup. It uses the web browser as a client, making it very accessible, user-friendly, and customizable. Let us know what you think!" Between this and rakim it seems the niche is taking shape well.

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