Friday, March 27, 2009

eXtensible Catalog NCIP Toolkit

A new tool from the XC folks.
The eXtensible Catalog (XC) NCIP Toolkit is now available to the public for download. This project page, hosted by Google Code, is home to all the up-to-date information about the NCIP Toolkit including its downloads, documentation, bug reports, feature requests, and the most updated under-development code. You just need a Google account to access the project's code, bug tracking system and other features.

You can download a compiled .war file for installing the NCIP Toolkit v0.2, a program for testing the toolkit, and documentation on the project. If you prefer to work with the source code, the latest version can be downloaded from the SVN repository. Alternatively, you can download the code for our alpha version 0.2 release.

The NCIP Toolkit is intended to be installed alongside a compatible ILS and act as an intermediary between NCIP clients and the ILS. The NCIP Toolkit will provide an NCIP interface for authentication requests, live circulation status lookups, and circulation requests. When a client sends an NCIP request to the toolkit, the request is parsed and sent to the ILS using its proprietary interface. The response is then translated back into the NCIP protocol and returned to the client

The NCIP Toolkit can be used as part of the XC system, or on its own to add NCIP functionality to an ILS. It is a server application written in Java and is only needed for ILSs that do not already implement the NCIP protocol.

The NCIP Toolkit is currently only compatible with Voyager, and we are working on adding support for Aleph and III in a future version which will also be released to Google code. We welcome contributions which will enable compatibility with other ILSs. The code is set up so a Java developer can add a support for a new ILS with minimal prior knowledge of the NCIP protocol, and instructions on adding support for a new ILS can be found in the documentation from the above link.

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