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CODE4LIB  October 2013

CODE4LIB October 2013

Subject:

Re: Python applications for libraries

From:

Thomas Bennett <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Code for Libraries <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 18 Oct 2013 12:51:26 -0400

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Granted, much or all of this could have been done in Perl or other languages but I had begun working with Python shortly before I graduated in Computer Science mainly because it was one of the first or the first object oriented scripting languages, that is, it is written from the bottom up to be an object oriented language and supported by the popular OSs and free for all OSs.  It was originally written for the Amoeba OS.  And the syntax forces readability, mainly through indention instead of semicolons and such so it has to be formatted correctly.  This syntax allows one to more easily comprehend someone else's script. And at one Python conference there was a contest to write a limerick and one attendee took this literally that the code had to be a limerick and he did it.

http://nedbatchelder.com/blog/200503/python_limericks.html


A good site for tutorials on several languages is showmedo.com some are free and some are not, and you can upload your own tutorials but included are Python, JAVA,  C++, C, Ruby,  Perl, Javascript, Assembly, Django, Rubyonrails, turbo gears, firefox, open office, scribes, virtual box, openstreetmap, gimp, inkscape, blender, eclipse, vim, die, linux, ubuntu, wxpython, pyopengl, pygame, python, pydev, boa_constructor, and probably others, it originated as just a python tutorial site.  This was started by Ian and Kyran and they will respond to your emails, a couple of good guys.


My very first WEB application, except for some Perl pages I did for Programming Languages class,  was a python script that emailed a form on a Netscape WEB server but I can't remember but it seems that it did something more than just email.  I think the netscape server was built from the original code for the Mosaic server, I bet its been years since some of you heard that name and then there maybe some of you that say "what server?"  ;-)


As far as applications, and most all of these are in Zope using python scripts and PostgreSQL database, we are now using Drupal for most everything but some of these are still running from Zope:

Room booking using google calendars using the gdata google library: 
	when a form is submitted the script first checks to see if there is a conflict or the request is within the hours available for that room.  If the room is not available the user is returned to the form with the conflict shown and other reservations for that day allowing the user to change the time and or date.  this continues until there is not a conflict, some of these booking check multiple calendars such as our holiday calendar and open hours calendar also.
Once a free spot is found the request becomes a record in a PostgeSQL database table and emails are sent out to our booking agent to use a web interface to approve or not approve the event.   Approval emails go to the requestor and our setup staff, also if training on equipment was request by a check box on the form an email goes to that tech person, also the event gets posted to the Google Calendar for that room, all scripted.  If there is a cancelation, emails go out so the setup people will know they don't have to do any room changes.  This is the short version ;-)

html to pdf - script that would create a pdf file from an html file just by adding /html2pdf on the end of a url, of course now that is available from the print command on OSX and printtopdf for windows.

Proxy URLs - show direct URLs to local users and proxy URLs to off campus users.   you can read more on that in a recent post on WEB4LIB concerning proxy and WAM

The library is now using Drupal but using Zope we had our first AskALibrarian that used Zope forms, database, and emails(Zope server is written in python).  This was "Co-published  simultaneously in Internet Reference Services Quarterly(The Haworth Information Press, an imprint of The Haworth Press, Inc) Vol. 7, No. 1/2, 2002,pp 89-98; and: Database-Driven Web Sites(ed: Kristin Antleman)The Haworth Information Press, an imprint of The Haworth Press, Inc.,2002,pp. 89-98" which will give you a detail of that project.

Library Tutorial - did quiz, grading, and email with  Zope, database, and python scripts.

Forms for creating QR Codes using python scripting

Assignment calculator - a Zope rewrite of the University of Minnesota php Assignment Calculator.  The Assignment Calculator calculates the number of days between the start date and the end date.  Next, each step of the 12 steps is a weighted value of the total by percent.  This could be incorporated even into Project steps for a timeline.

Random number to image sorta like Captcha but you could read the number on a graphic file.

Python scripts to create xls reports from the Trac database, the sqlite version

Python scripts to read library employee data and write to an els file for people to print the building directory

WEB Form to backup PostgreSQL databases, or run any command line for that matter.

Python scripts to move our homemade archives database from original PostgreSQL database to a database in a format/schema the could be imported by Archivists Toolkit into a MySQL database.

Python script to sync passwords to ldap server, linux servers, htaccess files, windows inas servers(running cygwin on the server)  and other zope servers.

Python script to transform xml to html based on a local xsl file.




Also, if you are managing a RedHat based server like RHEL, Fedora, or CentOS many of the configuration programs are written in python and it could help to know the language if problems occur.  I have a script on the servers that check disk space and if it is up to 80% used I get an sms text message and I don't let it send if it is between midnight and 6 am, I like my sleep. ;-)


As usual I have probably spoke too long already,

Thanks,

Thomas


====================================================
Support Request                http://portal.support.appstate.edu                                      
====================================================
Thomas McMillan Grant Bennett           Appalachian State University
Operations & Systems Analyst            P O Box 32026
University Library                                Boone, North Carolina 28608
(828) 262 6587
Library Systems                              http://www.library.appstate.edu
====================================================

If you find the wrong word sometimes please don't think I am totally illiterate, I had help from apple mail wanting to autocorrect my spelling  :-(

Confidentiality Notice:
This communication constitutes an electronic communication within the meaning of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C. Section 2510, and its disclosure is strictly limited to the recipient intended by the sender of this message.  If you are not the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of any of the information contained in or attached to this transmission is STRICTLY PROHIBITED.  Please contact this office immediately by return e-mail or at 828-262-6587, and destroy the original transmission and its attachment(s), if any, if you are not the intended recipient.

On Oct 18, 2013, at 9:14 AM, Joseph Umhauer wrote:

> I'm considering taking on online course for programming using Python.
> But not sure if it would be useful in my work at an academic library.
> 
> My question is:
> 
> If you are using Python, what applications have you developed for your institution?
> 
> TIA
> 
> j0e
> 
> Joseph Umhauer
> Assistant Library Director for Technical Services
> Niagara University Library
> 716-286-8015
> [log in to unmask]

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