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Welcome to code4lib BC!

Begun in Summer 2013, this chapter aims to create connections and professional development opportunities for folks from British Columbia and surrounding areas.

First Annual Code4lib BC Event

When: November 28 and 29, 2013

Where: SFU Harbour Centre, Vancouver, BC map

Cost: $20

Accommodations: Info coming soon.

Register here: https://code4libbc2013.eventbrite.ca/

What: It’s a 2 day unconference! A participant-driven meeting featuring lightning talks in the mornings, hackfest in the afternoons, with coffee, tea and snacks provided. Lightning talks are brief presentations which are typically 5-10 minutes in length (15 minutes is the maximum) on topics related to library technologies: current projects, tips and tricks, or hacks in the works. Hackfest is an opportunity to bring participants together in an ad hoc fashion for a short, yet sustained period of problem solving, software development and fun. In advance of the event, we will gather project ideas in a form available through our wiki and registration pages. Each afternoon the code4libBC participants will review and discuss the proposals, break into groups, and work on some of the projects.

Who: A diverse and open community of library developers and non-developers engaging in effective, collaborative problem-solving through technology.Anyone from the library community who is interested in library technologies are welcome to join and participate, regardless of their department or background: systems and IT, public services, circulation, cataloguing and technical services, archives, digitization and preservation. All are welcome to help set the agenda, define the outcomes and develop the deliverables!

Why: Why not? code4libBC is a group of dynamic library technology practitioners throughout the province who want to build new relationships as much as develop new software solutions to problems.

Tag d'hash: #c4lbc

If you’re ready to get your hands dirty with library technology practitioners, register here: https://code4libbc2013.eventbrite.ca/

Our first annual code4libBC event could not have been made possible without the generous financial support of:

  • BCCATS (British Columbia Cataloguing and Technical Services Interest Group)
  • BC Electronic Library Network
  • BC Libraries Cooperative
  • Kwantlen Polytechnic University
  • Simon Fraser University
  • University of Victoria

And special thanks to the BC Libraries Cooperative for assisting the organizing group with administrative duties.

Feel free to email Paul Joseph (code4libBC Chair) at paul.joseph@ubc.ca with questions or comments.

Lightning Talk Proposals and Hackfest/Breakout Suggestions: Submit them here.



9:00 Welcome & Announcements
Lightning Talks
  • Paul Joseph - Opening Talk
  • Linda Woodcock - RDA: 10 Things
  • Mark Jordan - Linked Data
  • Marcus Emmanuel Barnes - SFU Library's METS-Bagger Tool
  • Cynthia Ng - Shifting Perspectives: From Disability Accommodation to Universal Design
  • Stefan Khan-Kernahan - Course Reserves at UBC
  • May Chan - Hackfests for the Uninitiated
10:30 Coffee break
10:45 Schedule Jam
11:00 Breakout Sessions
1 Hour Lunch (On Your Own) Suggestions
3:15 Break
3:30 Breakout Reports
5:00 Social


9:00 Announcements
Lightning Talks
  • Mark Jordan - DOCR/SMD
  • Peter Tyrrell - Parsing PDF into Various Formats
  • John Durno - Uploading to Internet Archive via API
  • Colleen Bell - Integrating ERM & Libguides Content
  • Sarah Sutherland - RFP Evaluation Process
  • Calvin Mah / Todd Holbrook - SFU Library - Hours Database
10:30 Coffee break
10:45 Schedule Jam
11:00 Breakout Sessions
1 Hour Lunch (On Your Own) Suggestions
3:15 Break
3:30 Breakout Reports
4:00 End of Day

Lightning Talk Proposals

John Durno, University of Victoria

  • Filling up the Internet Archive using their S3-like API. UVic recently uploaded 750G of old newspapers and metadata (over 15,000 issues) to the IA via their API, based on Amazon's S3, by way of a simple python script making use of the boto library and a wrapper supplied by one of the IA developers. The API proved surprisingly robust, and I'd like to spread the word.

Peter Tyrrell, Andornot

  • Setting up Apache Solr to index and search over multiple source types: database and fielded data, Excel/CSV, scanned mags and newspapers, PDFs, word processor documents, websites, geolocations, etc. Focus will be on schema and DataImportHandler considerations, plus amusing anecdotes as time allows.
  • Another option would be: scripts that parse a PDF into a TIF, JPG, TXT, and positional XML per page via djvulibre and imagemagick libraries. Make 'em ready for indexing and flexible display.
  • I could maybe go over how to (and how NOT to) represent and display hierarchical (cough, archival) data in an Apache Solr index. Mostly this would be a juicy rant about how just how ruddy difficult I found it.

Stefan Khan-Kernahan, The University of British Columbia

  • UBC is launching an in-house product for managing course reserves that helps streamline workflows between faculty & library, within library staff (e.g copyright control etc.), and library & student, which I'd like to present on, the content of which would be on completed modules to date and learning lessons for others

Marcus Emmanuel Barnes, Simon Fraser University

  • Normalizing existing digitized content into standardized packages for robust long-term management. A report on SFU Library's METS-Bagger tool, with a discussion of the benefits, design principles used for the packaging specification, and potential next steps.

Colleen Bell, University of the Fraser Valley

  • I've been using PHP, JSON, and Libguides widgets to integrate Libguides content into our ERM and ERM content into our Libguides. This is particularly useful for libraries using SFU's researcher suite, but could provide ideas for anyone, since the code generated by the PHP can be displayed in any web page.

Mark Jordan, Simon Fraser University

  • Libraries are realizing the potential for exposing their locally managed content as Linked Data. One of the types of local data that offers a lot of potential for leveraging Linked Data's capabilities is the controlled subject terms applied to local digital collections. I would like to demonstrate how I've enriched SFU's Editorial Cartoons Collection's descriptive metadata with URIs from http://id.loc.gov, paying particular attention to those from the Thesaurus for Graphic Material.
  • Explanation and demo of docr/smd, a distributed Optical Character Recognition platform designed to use smartphones and tablets to do the OCR.

May Chan, Burnaby Public Library

  • Hackfests for the Uninitiated. For all sorts of reasons, hackfests can be intimidating to first-timers and especially to those who have little or no programming ability. To encourage those new to this form of collaborative learning, my LT will relate key a-ha! moments from my first hackfest experience, especially some difficult truths learned.
  • The Code4Lib Conference Gender and Minority Scholarships. One of the ways Code4Lib supports gender and cultural diversity is to offer conference scholarships to women, transgendered persons and persons of ethnic or aboriginal descent. As a way to encourage potential BC applicants, this LT will give some nuanced background on the scholarship program and application process.

Calvin Mah / Todd Holbrook, SFU Library

  • SFU Library - Hours Database. The Library Hours Database developed by Todd Holbrook at SFU Library is a tool for managing library hours. The SFU Library hours page is generated by this database: http://www.lib.sfu.ca/about/hours

Sarah Sutherland, Canadian Legal Information Institute

  • I would like to discuss the process involved in evaluating the responses to requests for proposals for technology projects. There are often several very good submissions once the basic requirements are met, and at that point it becomes more about the style of the vendor and what kind of project it is. We recently went through this process, so I will use some anonymized examples from our process to illustrate my talk.

Cynthia Ng, CILS @ Langara College

  • Shifting Perspectives: From Disability Accommodation to Universal Design

Too often we design for the "average" user and then tack on accommodations for those with disabilities, but there is no "average" user to speak of, and we all use "assistive" technology. With this presentation, I hope to help shift the way we think about library services and their delivery.

Linda Woodcock, Kwantlen Polytechnic University

  • "RDA : 10 Things. Walks through an RDA record focusing on new data elements and changes from AACR2. Will talk about benefits to user and possibilities for the future use of new data."

Hackfest/Breakout Suggestions

John Durno, University of Victoria

  • Develop an Omeka module that uses the Internet Archive to host video and audio content, essentially using Omeka as the front end user interface while taking advantage of the IA's media delivery/streaming capabilities. I envision two components: content and metadata would be uploaded via Omeka's admin interface. The IA's media player would be embedded in the public interface for content delivery.

Stefan Khan-Kernahan, The University of British Columbia

  • Building a more engaging digital asset viewer than what is provided by ContentDM/competitors. Details: current digital asset presentation (e.g Content DM), whilst providing all the ""necessary"" information for the user (image + metadata etc.) simply lack in user engagement. If universities are expecting to build interest in these collections among current/future students, they need to cater for a more involved experience. I am proposing an image viewer for digital assets that allows tagging/hotspot that trigger supplementary information beyond metadata (e.g. video explanations of areas on maps, how they came to be etc)

Karen J. Nelson, Capilano Unversity Library

  • Could we have a quickie: 1. FRBR explanation. 2. ditto data exchange. 3. ditto linked data. 4. bibframe. 5. WEMI language

Jonathan Jacobsen, Andornot

  • I'm working on a virtual exhibit project using Omeka right now, so I second the idea of an Omeka breakout session. Would love to connect with some other Omeka users/developers. In particular, to discuss the Solr plug-in.

Scott Leslie, BC Libraries Cooperative

  • Creating a toolkit/process for collaborative, grassroots archiving of significant, small BC websites using DIY tools

May Chan, Burnaby Public Library, and Mark Jordan, Simon Fraser University