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Archive for the ‘Development’ Category

Systematic identification of OA articles from hybrid journals

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JournalTOCs is pleased to announce that the automated identification of Open Access (OA) articles from hybrid journals has started to work today

This is a highly important development in the efforts being made towards enabling systematic and easy identification of Open Access articles for aggregators, discovery services and A&I providers.

Publishers start to enable the systematic identification of Open Access at the Article Level

These first results are the product of collaboration between JournalTOCs and more than 10 established commercial forward thinking publishers.

Being able to systematically and consistently identify Open Access articles, regardless where they have been published, has a huge potential for the progress of Open Access and could play a vital role in the success of using the hybrid model to migrate subscription-based titles to full Open Access in a sustainable way for authors, readers, librarians and publishers.

The technology behind this new service is the simple and easy to use TOC RSS feeds. RSS feeds are also relatively easy to implement.

A publisher wanting to support the automated discovery of Open Access from its journals only needs to create its RSS feeds by following these best practices and these steps.

Example showing how an OA article from a hybrid journal is identified by JournalTOCs:

OA article in a Hybrid journal

At this stage the OA articles are only identified as such by the OA logo Open Access and an orange background. As more publishers implement the <cc:license> and <dc:rights> standard elements in their RSS feeds, we will be able to provide information on the type of CC licence and the copyright holder for each OA article. The information will be obtained by combining the possible implementations of the <cc:license> and <dc:rights> elements:

Article copyright
Article copyright belongs to the publisher:
<dc:rights>Copyright © Publication_Year Publisher_Name</dc:rights>
<dc:rights>Copyright © 2014 ScienceMed Publisher Ltd</dc:rights>
Article copyright belongs to the author(s):
<dc:rights>Copyright © Publication_Year First Author_Surname, First_Author_Initial [et al]</dc:rights>
<dc:rights>Copyright © 2014 Smith J.</dc:rights>
Type of Creative Commons licence (only for OA articles)
– for CC-BY licences:
<cc:license rdf:resource=”” />
– for CC-BY-NC licenses:
<cc:license rdf:resource=”” />
– for CC-BY-NC-SA licenses:
<cc:license rdf:resource=”” />
– for CC-BY-NC-ND licenses:
<cc:license rdf:resource=”” />
Subscription-based or non-OA articles
Example of an RSS feeds’ root element showing all the required namespaces to enable OA discovery at the article level:

Written by Santiago Chumbe

April 7th, 2014 at 4:54 pm

JournalTOCs is continuing to grow. 24,000 Scholarly Journals are now included in the largest RSS-based alerting service for researchers

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As a result of adding 1000 more journals since October 2013, the number of scholarly journals whose latest Tables of Contents (TOCs) are included in the JournalTOCS alerting service for researchers has passed the 24,000 major milestone.

Almost half of those 1000 additions come from Hybrid and Subscription-based journals whose RSS feeds have been reviewed and upgraded. The second half includes Open Access journals and a few of relatively new journals.

Of the 24,000 Tables of Content included in JournalTOCs, over 7,500 are Open Access and almost 5,000 journals have been identified as Hybrid journals. The rapidly growing number of Hybrid journals is likely to significantly increase as more publishers offer OA options in a percentage, or in some cases in all of their journals. For example, almost all the 140 journals of Maney & Son Ltd indexed by JournalTOCs are now Hybrid journals as they offer OA options to authors. Hybrid journals at JournalTOCs are identified by this icon Hybrid Journal.

Publishers, editors and readers are welcome to suggest journals to JournalTOCs, but quality of content is important, and JournalTOCs does not include journals that do not adhere to appropriate standards such as:

  • The journal has been actively publishing new online issues in a regular basis in the last two years. Journals that have published fewer than two issues are not included in JournalTOCs.
  • The journal has to publish professional, scientific or scholarly articles that have been peer-reviewed.
  • The journal must have an editor, an editorial board and a peer-review system.
  • The journal must publish TOC RSS feeds for its most recent issues.

Written by Santiago Chumbe

March 7th, 2014 at 12:58 pm

December brings new features for super-user accounts

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The super-user account has become an important tool for the administrators of institutional customised versions of JournalTOCs. A number of changes to the user interface as well as new features have been recently added to the super-user account, based largely on feedback from the own super-users.

We have expanded the functionality of managing user’s email alerts. Now super-users can activate, deactivate and change the alert frequency of email alerts for their users. Users of customised versions of JournalTOCs can choose from the following alert frequencies:

– Once a day
– Once a week (Weekly Digest)
– Once a month (Monthly Digest), or
– Temporary deactivated (holidays)

A super-user noticed that some of his users were following many journals for which they didn’t have online full-text access. However, the email alerts sent to those users for those journals, were invariably including institutional URLs (e.g. openURL, ezProxy or WAM URLs). A change has been implemented in the alerting system, so now the email alerts include institutional URLs only for the journals for which the institution has full-text access. For the rest of journals, users are provided with the URL of the journal homepage so they can go directly to the publisher site and read the abstracts.

Super-users can disable and enable self-registration from the Admin panel. Until now, any user belonging to an institution with a customised version of JournalTOCs could add himself to the group of users of the customised version. Thus, any user that signed up with JournalTOCs and whose domain email address was the same than the institutional domain email address, was automatically added to the customised version. Now “self-registration” is managed by the super-user account.

Furthermore, super-users can request that the email alert of a specific user be redirected to any other email address. This can be useful for example when a user prefers that his alerts be sent to his private email address rather than his institutional email address.

The group of super-users has become a stimulating powerhouse of ideas, generating innovative changes for the benefit of all the institutions that are using customised versions of JournalTOCs. New features and changes are expected to happen in the coming months in response to the feedback of our super-users, who are the ones who really are steering the development of the super-user account at JournalTOCs.

Written by Santiago Chumbe

November 30th, 2012 at 11:45 pm

Inderscience and JournalTOCs agree to develop a Joint Industry Project (JIP)

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Inderscience Publishers, a SMT publisher of over 340 peer-reviewed international journals have awarded funding to the Institute for Computer Based Learning (ICBL) at Heriot Watt University for an initial period of five months to create a prototype of a new XML-first workflow technology to produce scholarly output in a variety of digital market channel ready forms, in particular current-awareness oriented reusable formats. The project will use the new prototype to demonstrate a smart personalised current-awareness web interface and to trial a suitable open licence policy for the RSS feeds produced by scholarly publishers.

Joint Industry Projects (JIP) offer a route for JournalTOCs to carry out expensive research and development of proof of concepts and prototypes by spreading the risk and costs over ICBL and its industrial partners. A JIP also provides the JournalTOCs Team with the opportunity of working within a real industrial environmental.

This new JIP, codenamed X-PARC, will continue a synergistic partnership initiated in 2003 with scholarly publishers when ICBL was awarded funding from the JISC PALS Metadata and Interoperability Programme (phase 1). The partnerships have contributed significantly to the development of research projects and the creation of services at ICBL.

ICBL and Inderscience Publishers have worked together in the past in the following projects:

Those projects have provided ICBL with first-hand insight of scholarly publishing experience and their challenges within the current digital environment. They also have enabled us to study and develop innovative solutions for the demands of academics and researchers for intuitive and efficient information discovery systems to access content published by scholarly publishers.

Written by Santiago Chumbe

March 10th, 2012 at 11:39 am

Set up alerts for when pre-pub articles became officially published

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Sometimes you may want to be made aware of articles that you know they have been submitted for a journal for peer-review. For example if you are an author you would want to be automatically notified when your article is published on the web. If you are the manager of an Institutional Repository (IR) you may want to run some kind of automated queries from your repository to the publisher’s database, for records without final publication details so that you can pick up the missing metadata as soon as the articles are officially published.

The JournalTOCs API can help you in these cases. It is not the perfect solution because there are publishers that are still not using DC and PRISM modules in their RSS feeds to enable aggregators to unambiguously identify authors and institutions. However, JournalTOCs still can help you to reduce the number of articles you may be missing to update in your IR.

A small webapp to run queries against the TOCs of journals that have been updated in the last 24 hours

Simon Greenhill, a research fellow in the Psychology Department and Computational Evolution Group at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, has recently released a python wrapper for the JournalTOCs API to retrieve journal TOC RSS feeds by ISSN and then run local queries against the journals that have been updated in the previous 24 hours.

Simon uses the wrapper to load in a collection of articles using JournalTOCs various RSS feeds from a sizable list of journals. His application would require polling each journal RSS feed via the JournalTOCs API periodically. In order to make the calls to the API more efficient and less bandwidth-demanding, he uses the JournalTOCs API call latest_updates so he can call that single feed once a day or so, and see if any of the journals he cares about have been updated.

Wrapper Code:

JournalTOC API (RSS feed) to retrieve the journals that have been updated in the last 24 hours:

Using JournalTOCs API to be alerted when pre-pub articles became officially published

Let’s suppose you have a pre-pub article deposited in the IR of the University of Warwick by academic Ian Philp. To setup an alert to be informed when journalTOCs identifies that an article of Ian Philp has been published officially, you could complete these steps:

  1. sign in to JournalTOCs
  2. search for: PhilpUniversity of Warwick” (Philp is a simple keyword and “University of Warwick” is the the name of the university enclosed by double quotes to signify phrase searching)
  3. You will get the search hits.
  4. From your Account Menu (top drop down list of options at the top corner under your account name) select & click on “Saved Searches“; or just point your browser to
  5. Under “You have recently searched for:” find your search query: Philp “University of Warwick” and click on its [Save] link
  6. Your search query will move up to your list of Saved Searches, from where you can choose to be alerted by email (click on “Alert-me“) or you can click on its RSS icon to create the RSS feeds for this search, so you can get the result via your RSS reader when the article is published.

By using the RSS feeds for your saved searches it might be possible to build some sort of application/plug-in that would automatically query JournalTOCs database from “in print” records in a repository to notify the IR manager when they were published. Just remember that the metadata in JournaTOCs is not good enough to identify articles by author uniquely because JournalTOCS only has what the publishers put into their RSS feeds. For example it might not work in practice with names like Smith and with universities like Birmingham (UK or Alabama?)

Written by Santiago Chumbe

February 28th, 2012 at 12:18 pm