Hi all, thanks for a great conference! Special thanks to Naomi Dushay,
Jessie Keck, and Bess Sadler and the rest of the Blacklight team for an
awesome precon which gave me a good kick in the pants in terms of TDD,
and more goodies.
I notice that Solr has gone from preconference curiosity a few years
back (IIRC) to a de facto standard in so much of our best software.
In terms of my own lightning talk, apologies if it lacked coherency and
direction; I spent most of my prep time bashing out the last of the
pre-beta bug fixes & enhancements, and getting the wiki up on the
hosting site, etc.
My main intention was to share an approach to dealing with a
showstopping problem in an otherwise-useful mature OSS app, that worked
for us. I was also hoping to demo the blasted thing, but ran out of
time. So, the closing remarks I didn't get to give: if you have some
product, part of which works, and part of which is useless, see if you
can manage to get your tentacles into the working part and hack it.
Once I discovered that Greenstone collections can be configured to use
Lucene (for fulltext and metadata indexing) and SQLite (descriptive and
structural metadata store), and PHP has good support for those
technologies, I figured it was worth a shot - and a few thousand lines
of code later, it works. We hope.
Bonus points for hacking in a foreign language - I wanted to add search
result snippet support, and after rummaging around in the Greenstone
collection-building code (and giving up in despair buried to my waist in
mind-bending, weirdly-formatted OOP Perl code, then discovering
perl-tidy and going back to it again), I discovered that the indexing
tweak I needed involved some Java that works with the native Lucene
libraries. I don't really know Java, but who cares - I read the code,
added a line, did a make - and it works! Try the impossible.
Yitzchak Schaffer (yitznewton)
Touro College Libraries
33 West 23rd Street
New York, NY 10010
Tel (212) 463-0400 x5230
Fax (212) 627-3197
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