11 junio 2008

ISIS3 - ABCD 2nd nugget

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, June 10, 2008 7:13 PM
Subject: ISIS3 - ABCD 2nd nugget

Dear colleagues:

As previously announced, we present the second nugget about ABCD = Automation of Libraries and Information Centers.

If you missed the first nugget, you can find it at:

https://listserv.surfnet.nl/scripts/wa.cgi?A2=ind0806&L=cds-isis&T=0&F=&S=&P=628  (Spanish)
https://listserv.surfnet.nl/scripts/wa.cgi?A2=ind0806&L=cds-isis&T=0&F=&S=&P=513 (English)
https://listserv.surfnet.nl/scripts/wa.cgi?A2=ind0806&L=cds-isis&T=0&F=&S=&P=760 (Portuguese)

 Today we will talk about the main principles of its architecture.

 General considerations

  • ABCD is alligned with the CISIS/1660 version 5.2 platform, and will eventually be made compatible with later versions. This means that the inverted file entries are 60 characters long, and will increase in length in the ISIS-NBP based version.
  • ABCD is compatible with programming languages accepted by the GNU licences, i.e. PHP, Java, Javascript, Python, etc. The current version of ABCD is written in PHP v.5.
  • The system is totally language independent. The product will be made available in Spanish, English, French and Portuguese by end of 2008, and can be translated into other languages in the same way the CDS/ISIS applications always were.

Cataloguing module

The main feature of the cataloguing module is that it accepts different database structures in a transparent way. Each database has its own configuration files which ABCD interprets in order to apply the necessary procedures to manage each information structure. This follows the same philosophy as CDS/ISIS. Each database has its own FDT (Field Definition Table), etc.

The first version of ABCD has the following functions available:

  • User control through a database defining username, login, password, user level (Administrator, Operator, Librarian, End user, etc.), where specific information sources and access rights are established.
  • Database creation in three modalities:
  1. Creating new databases in the traditional, four-step CDS/ISIS way: defining the FDT, a worksheet, a display format (PFT) and an indexing format (FST). ABCD generates the necessary environment files and creates the database in the Web server.
  2. Copying an existing database from the Web server, and making changes afterwards.
  3. Creating a database in the Web server based on a Winisis database available on the local machine. The ABCD system performs all the necessary conversions for the change of operative environment.
  • Management of multiple structures, providing templates for the separate entry of subfields. The structures can be based on MARC21, UNIMARC, LILACS, CEPAL, AGRIS, or any other ad-hoc structure that the user prefers. ABCD gives the user an extraordinarily wide capacity to define the FDT. It is possible to use repeatable subfields, to give names to subfields and to associate special help messages, pick-lists, etc. to each of them.
  • Dynamic building of data entry worksheets based on specifications given in the FDT. This table contains not only the specification of the ISIS fields proper, but also the characteristics which the fields will deploy in the worksheets (textbox, select, checkbox options, html area, text area), as well as the facilities to present controlled vocabularies related to the fields.
  • Capture of controlled vocabulary through authority files, obtained from the same or external databases. This feature is managed through inverted files.
  • Capture of controlled vocabulary through tables defined in TXT files.
  • Identification of fields requiring association to external resources (images, pdf, xls, etc) in order to upload these to the server.
  • Management of different kinds of records in each database, presenting the adequate worksheet for each type.
  • Management of multiple worksheets, dynamically defined by the user.
  • Access to records through the MFN, advanced search or alphabetical listing of a field defined as the main entry.
  • Creation, editing and deletion of records.
  • Presentation of search results using various display formats.
  • Printing module allowing different print formats and sorting criteria (depending on the number of records). Facilities for sending the results to wordprocessors or spreadsheets.
  • A module for the generation of lists and indexes.
  • Generation of scripts for real-time quality control during data entry.

We'll tell you more about ABCD functionalities in later notes.

The ABCD system is one of the main  topics to be presented during the 3rd ISIS World Congress, taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, september 14th-16th, 2008.

More information about the ISIS3 congress can be found at the Congress Website

Spanish         http://www.eventos.bvsalud.org/agendas/isis3/?lang=es
English http://www.eventos.bvsalud.org/agendas/isis3/?lang=en
Portuguese    http://www.eventos.bvsalud.org/agendas/isis3/?lang=pt

Ernesto Spinak
thanks to Wenke Adam for the translation

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