I am pleased to announce that the package I have been developing
has been accepted into the GNU Project of the Free Software
Foundation under the name "GNU Metadata Exchange Utilities".

This package began as the IWF Metadata Harvester, which I worked
on as part of a government-sponsored employment program at the
IWF Wissen und Media gGmbH (formerly Institute for Scientific Film)
in Germany.  After my contract ended, I began a new project
called the LDF Metadata Exchange Utilities using the code from
the IWF Metadata Harvester.  This was possible because the IWF
generously allowed me to publish my code and documentation under the
GNU General Public License and the GNU Free Documentation license,
respectively.  Since the package has been accepted into the GNU
Project, I have renamed it as above.

This is a major step forward for the project.  As part of the GNU
Project, it has a much greater chance of attracting users and
developers.  When the time comes, it may even be included in
GNU/Linux distributions.

I am now looking for a library, museum, archive, other institution,
or group of institutions to support my work on the GNU Metadata
Exchange Utilities.  Since it will use only Free Software
unencumbered by restrictive licenses, it would be ideally suited
for a cooperative project involving multiple institutions.

My current plans are to implement support for XML using the `libxml'
library and support for free database software, such as MySQL,
PostgreSQL, and nosql.  The dependencies on Microsoft software
present in the IWF Metadata Harvester will not be included in the
GNU Metadata Exchange Utilities, unless I've implemented the same
functionality for free systems.  I also intend to implement one
or more ways of providing data, as well as harvesting it.

While OAI and Z39.50 are widely used by libraries, they are lesser
known outside of this field.  I believe that a completely free
system for providing and accessing data using these families of standards
and protocols would be very useful for individuals and institutions in many
different fields.

I do require employment in order to continue my work on this project and
would be grateful for any help or suggestions.

Any comments or questions regarding the package would also be very welcome.

Thank you,

Laurence Finston