Monday, August 20, 2007

Feature of the Week

Extend your publication entries by adding a .pdf/ps file and a private note

Besides assigning tags to your BibTex entry with BibSonomy, you can extend your entries by uploading a local copy of publication as .pdf or .ps document. In addition, you can assign some private notes, which are only visible for you. This notes can contain some personal thoughts like “this paper is important for my research” or a short summary about the content. For example: You just posted the following publication: “Network Properties of Folksonomies” and would like to extend your entry with a local copy as .pdf or .ps file. You just simply click on the title and get the following options (see figure at the top). Try it and have fun, Miranda!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Feature of the Week: Manage the publication lists of your homepage, research group homepage and research project homepage with BibSonomy!

Researchers usually have to report the publications they have written several times, often in different formats. Did you know that BibSonomy simplifies this tedious work? Stop reformatting and restructuring the list of your publications again and again for all the different web pages you usually have to maintain - e.g., your personal homepage, the homepage of your research group and/or department, the homepage of your research project, ...

How to do it? See some examples:
1. Personal tag clouds and publication lists. The tag cloud on my personal homepage and my publication list are generated from BibSonomy. The key idea is to use a specific tag in BibSonomy to mark all publications one has co-authored - in our case the tag "myown".
The web server of our research group queries every half an hour the URL to update the tag cloud and (and similar pages for the earlier years) to update the publication list. The relevant HTML part is extracted, e.g., for the tag cloud everything between the start pattern <ul class="tagcloud" id="tagbox"> and the end pattern </ul>. The extraction process depends on the functionality of your web server, hence we cannot give general hints here. In our case, the formatting of the final tag cloud/publication list is realized with a css style sheet which is placed on the server of our research group. Instead of doing the layout of the extracted HTML on your own web server (eg by using css), you can alternatively export it directly in the desired format from BibSonomy, see "Feature of the Week: Customizable Publication Exports" for more details.

2. Publication lists of research groups and departments. The same data are used for displaying the publication list of our whole research group. This list is extracted from by selecting everything between the start pattern <h1>Publications</h1> and the end pattern </body>, as described above. In general, the group functionality allows to aggregate all entries (or only those entries tagged with a tag like "myown") of a group, see "Feature of the Week: Groups and Friends" for more details.

3. Publication lists of research projects. You can again reuse the same BibSonomy data for generating the publication lists of research projects. Two examples are the publication lists of the European projects TAGora and Nepomuk. For doing this, the project coordinator sets up a group account in BibSonomy, and the project partners should join this group (see again "Feature of the Week: Groups and Friends" for more details). Then there are two alternatives, depending on the requirements of the project: a) Define a specific tag, e.g. "tagorapub" as done for the publication list of the TAGora project. An author devoting a publication to the project marks the publication with the specified tag, and the project web server collects the data from BibSonomy (in the format that is most suitable for your web server, eg. from b) Ask each project partner to tag the publication he devotes to the project with "for:". An example is the publication list of the Nepomuk project. The advantage of the second method: Once a publication is commited to a project, it cannot be withdrawn without explicit consent of the project coordinator. This feature is often required in projects where the coordinator is responsible for the reporting.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Feature of the Week: Tag Box Settings

Some weeks ago we improved and unified the settings for the tag cloud. If you have JavaScript enabled you see now above your tag cloud the options for sorting (Which could be either by frequency (i.e., how often you used a tag) or alphabetically.), layout (You can choose between a cloud or a list.), and minimal frequency (Allows you to show only tags which you used at least that often.).

On the settings page all those options (and some more) can be changed, too. There you can also adjust the minimal tag frequency at a finer granularity and activate tooltips for your tags. For users with deactivated JavaScript the settings page is the preferred way to change the layout of their tag cloud.

Furthermore, if you are logged in the settings are now saved in the database. Hence, when you switch to another browser or computer, you see your tag cloud always in the same layout.

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