Archive for the ‘OPML’ tag
As you may be aware, the ticTOCs service will be discontinued at the end of March 2012. The teams of ticTOCs and JournalTOCs are working together to facilitate a seemly and conveniently transfer of ticTOCs users’ accounts and the content of their MyTOCS folders to JournalTOCs, so ticTOCs users can opt-in to continue enjoying the benefits of a TOC current awareness service without interruption.
In particular, the end of ticTOCs will affect the users who have signed up to have MyTOCs folders with ticTOcs. With the aim of helping those users, JournalTOCs has setup a web page from where ticTOCs users can transfer their accounts to JournalTOCs before the end of March. By completing the following simple steps, ticTOCs users can quickly and easily transfer their accounts and their MyTOCs folder to JournalTOCs:
- Login at https://www.tictocs.ac.uk
- You will see all your journals listed in the MyTOCs section
- Click Select All button
- Click Export Selected button
- Save the tictocs.opml file
- Go to https://www.journaltocs.ac.uk/tictocs_users/
- Enter your email address
- Upload your tictocs.opml file
Once you have completed the above eight steps, JournalTOCs will recreate your ticTOCs account on the JournalTOCs website and automatically will upload all your TicTOCs journals to your “Followed Journals”. You will receive a welcome email confirming your registration and giving you useful information to make the most of JournalTOCs.
If some of your journals are not found in the JournalTOCs database, the JournalTOCs crawler will index the missing journals and automatically add them to your JournalTOCs account in the few days after your have registered with JournalTOCs.
One of the most frustrating problems in navigating websites is to be presented with a “Page Not Found” webpage.
This is precisely the scenario that aggregators and discovery systems are facing with the 1,600 journal TOC RSS feeds of Taylor & Francis.
Since Monday 27th June, when Taylor & Francis moved its journals platform from Informaworld to Tandfonline, the previous URLs for all the Taylor & Francis journal TOC RSS feeds are returning the infamous “Page Not Found” webpage. Although we were informed by Taylor & Francis that they have redirects in place for those TOC RSS feeds, the fact is that as today, those TOC RSS URLs are still unable to be redirected to their new web addresses.
This “Page Not Found” problem could have been easily avoided if Taylor & Francis had had an up-to-date OPML file listing the RSS feeds for all their journals. Aggregators, service discovery and individual RSS users would have been able to automatically and immediately update the URLs for the TOC RSS feeds by just consulting the OPML file.
In general OPML allows RSS feed aggregators and indexers to more easily find the TOC RSS feeds exposed from a particular publisher website. OPML is a standard XML file that is used to describe a simple list of RSS feeds that includes the title of the feed, a link to the home page of the feed (e.g. the journal homepage), and a link to the RSS feed itself.
Annual Reviews, Biomed Central Ltd., BMJ Publishing Group, Elsevier, Inderscience Publishers, Institute of Physics (IOP), Nature Publishing Group, Oxford University Press (OUP) and Érudit are the pioneering publishers that are using OPML files to enable aggregators to dynamically detect any change in the list of journals they publish. When their OPML would get updated, so would the aggregators.
Publishers are therefore recommended to publish OPML documents that list all of the feeds from their websites and in particular for their current issues. Unfortunately publishers that don’t have OPML files listing their current journals are not able to prevent information on their journals from growing stale at the aggregators’ databases.
Unlike RSS feeds, there is no standard way to link to an OPML file from the publisher website. However publishers are advised to put a link to their OPML files on a suitable and freely available webpage. For example Inderscience provides a link to its OPML file here.
As today, JournalTOCs has been able to update the URLs for the TOC RSS feeds of 80% of the journals published by Taylor & Francis.
We are pleased to announce that all the journals published by the multi-institutional consortium Érudit have been added to JournalTOCs today.
Érudit is a publishing non-profit consortium comprising the Université de Montréal, the Université Laval and the Université du Québec à Montréal. Érudit forms the “Quebec node” of Synergies, the dissemination of research platform of Canada. The Érudit platform provides access to several types of documents in the humanities and social sciences, as well as the natural science disciplines.
Established in 1998 as a digital publishing site at the Université de Montréal, Érudit launched its online platform in 2002 based on its own XML standard (Érudit Article schema) developed to ensure the best conditions for the use and preservation of their digital documents.
Érudit makes use of the convenient OPML file format to maintain a permanent up-to-date list with all its journals. OPML is important for JournalTOCs and for any RSS aggregators to dynamically detect any change in the list of journals (i.e. new journals, title changes, etc.). Thus, when the OPML of Érudit would get updated, so would JournalTOCs, which prevents information on Érudit journals from growing stale at the JournalTOCs database. On the other hand, we have contacted Érudit to encourage them to enhance the quality of the metadata included in their journal TOC RSS feeds. In general, we do advise publishers to follow the TicTOCs-CrossRef Recommendations for scholarly TOC RSS feeds.
The 88 journals currently being published by Érudit will be available online from JournaTOCs from the First of March 2011.
Once Marjolein Hoekstra pleaded Feedly to consider adding support for dynamic OPML. Her post summarised very well why OPML is important for RSS aggregators to dynamically detect any change in the list of subscribed feeds. When an OPML would get updated, so would the aggregator. The scenario is valid for publishers of scholarly journals.
JournalTOCs endeavours to keep up-to-date the journals published by all the publishers that have been selected by JournalTOCs. Unfortunately publishers that don’t have OPML files listing their current journals are not able to prevent information on their journals from growing stale at the JournalTOCs database.
Producing an OPML file is simple and it’s not a challenge for web developers. Here, we are glad to post a good example of an OPML implementation done by an important publisher.
Laura Paterson is the Program Administrator in charge of Marketing Online Data Focus at Annual Reviews. Back in September 24th, 2010; when reading the UKSG e-resources mailing list, she noticed that several of Annual Reviews‘ newer journals were not listed on JournalTOCs website. Laura emailed JournalTOCs to enquiry about the process for adding additional titles to JournalTOCs. In her first email, Laura listed the eight journals that were missing in JournalTOCs, she attached a KBART formatted list of all the titles published by Annual Reviews, which included ISSN and URL information for each title, and finally she offered help to get all the Annual Reviews titles in JournalTOCs.
We immediately added the missing titles and replied Laura encouraging her to arrange the publication of an OPML file on the Annual Reviews website.
A month later, Laura informed us that Annual Reviews have created an OPML file for its journals which can be found here.
What is more, Annual Reviews had also created a whole range of different and useful RSS feeds; from Table of Contents RSS Feeds for each of their journals to Annual Reviews Audio Series RSS Feeds. They have created a webpage that lists all of the RSS feeds that are available from Annual Reviews: https://www.annualreviews.org/page/about/rssfeeds
We were impressed with the way Annual Reviews had implemented support for OPML and RSS. We think that the development achieved by Annual Reviews demonstrates that producing good and useful RSS & OPML files is not an expensive or complex task. The OPML file and the RSS feeds produced by Annual Reviews are good examples of using web feed formats to publish frequently updated journals in a standardised format for the benefit of readers and subscribers of scholarly journals. The OPML file is simple (see following XML code) but provides enough information to keep automated track of the published journals. Some would argue that the ISSN and the subject classification for each journal would be added. However, the file accomplishes well its main purpose, and that is much better than nothing.
It is significant to notice that being Laura an expert in the field of online discoverability, she was able to quickly perceive the importance of using RSS and OPML for Annual Reviews business. All the major publishers are already publishing OPML files on their websites and the message for the rest of publishers is simple: having an OPML file on your website is highly beneficial for your business.
Manually subscribing to each of the journal TOC RSS feeds produced by a publisher is a time-consuming task. Journal users have to periodically visit the publisher web pages to keep track of new journals, transfers or journals that have ceased to exist. Some publishers have tried to make easier these processes (for example “Forget Me Not” of Springer), but the fact is that no one of these mechanisms is as easy and convenient as listing all the journals in an OPML file. OPML enables users to find the up-to-date list of journal feeds from a single point. Through OPML, users will always be able to know the journals that the publisher is currently publishing and get the latest content for any journal with less effort than visiting the journal feeds repeatedly.
As of early this morning, JournalTOCs has 3,020 subscribed users worldwide and since last week we’re growing that figure at roughly five new members per day.
Why our users would want to subscribe to JournalTOCs? The main reason is to be able to save their preferred journals in their own MyTOCs folder. From there they can read their favourite new Tables of Contents (TOCs) at their convenience, or export them as an OPML file into any popular RSS feed reader. Their lists of preferred journals are thus permanently saved.
If you are one of our subscribed users, you are probably aware that saving journals in your MyTOCs folder is easy. From the homepage of JournalTOCs you only need to click the “Save to export your MyTOCs folder” link to export the list of your journals to any RSS reader that supports the OPML file format, such as the popular Google Reader. The complete process involves two steps:
A) First you need to save the content of your MyTOCs folder in an OPML file:
– Click on “Save to export your MyTOCs folder” link
– Save your file in your local disk (by default the file will be called mytocs.opml)
B) Secondly, follow the instructions of your favourite RSS reader to import OPML files. For example, these are the instructions for Google Reader:
1. Login to Google Reader
2. Click Settings
3. Select Reader Settings
4. Click the Import/Export tab
5. Browse for your mytocs.opml file
6. Click Open
7. Click Upload
8. You will see the following displayed until it is done: Your subscriptions are being imported…
Fig. 1 Exporting OPML feeds into Google Reader
While 3,020 is an important milestone, we’re more interested about how we could enable our subscribed users to make even more of their MyTOCs content. Thus, to mark this milestone we have added two new features that are exclusively available for our MyTOCs users:
1. A new search option that allows subscribed users to search for articles in their favourite journal TOCs (MyTOCs folder) only, and
2. An alerting service that our users can activate to get email alerts when new issues are published in one of their favourite journals.
We’re proud to have reached this latest milestone, and we very much appreciate our MyTOCs users. We continue developing JournalTOCs to make it even more productive, convenient and useful.