NYPL Labs Brown Bag Talk to Focus on Open Source in the Library

This Friday, August 26, NYPL Labs will host a discussion about open source technology in the library. Please read on for complete details.

Developing and Deploying Open Source in the Library: Hydra, Blacklight, and Beyond

A brown bag lunch talk with Julie Meloni (University of Virginia Library)
Hosted by NYPL Labs and the NYPL Information Technology Group
Wachenheim Trustees Room, Friday August 26, 12pm 

In these trying financial times, libraries and cultural heritage institutions in general face difficult resource allocation decisions: for example, do you spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on proprietary software or do you hire a few good software developers and library professionals who can lead the design of applications and platforms specific to your needs?  For some, leveraging open source software and the communities that form around it helps solve some of these problems.
The University of Virginia Library is a key partner in the collaborative and open source project known as "Hydra"; the goal of the Hydra Project is to create a comprehensive set of open source repository workflow tools that allow librarians and scholars to manage describe, deliver, reuse and preserve digital information. U.Va.’s committment to the project includes the definition of metadata standards, the creation of search and discovery interfaces, and the development and implementation of multiple Hydra “heads” such as the interface and workflow in use for the U.Va. institutional repository. U.Va is also a key contributor to the Blacklight project; Blacklight is an open source discovery interface or "next-generation catalog" — and can be seen powering the newly updated U.Va. OPAC, Virgo.
This talk will provide a brief overview of both the Hydra and Blacklight projects and the tools under development, will describe some of the processes and challenges for development teams working within a library setting, and show some of the ways that open source software works (and where it gets tricky) within this setting.
~45 min. talk, ~30 min. Q&A. Feel free to bring lunch!


Julie Meloni is the Chief Architect of the Online Library Environment at the University of Virginia Library. Engaged in the design and development of web-based application since 1994, the bulk of her work occured in the private sector, where her responsibilities ranged from enterprise-grade application planning, design, and development, to system administration and user interface and user experience consultation. Since 2000, she has authored more than fifteen editions of texts for Sams Publishing, covering numerous topics in web application development and programming and markup languages. She also completed a PhD in English from Washington State University in 2010, with an emphasis on nineteenth-century American Literature and History of the Book.


NYPL Labs is an experimental technology unit that works closely with curators to create tools that expand the range of interaction, interpretation and reuse of research library collections and data. Labs hosts public talks and workshops on a roughly monthly basis on advanced topics in the digital humanities. Keep an eye out for future events @nypl_labs. Get in touch at labs@nypl.org
Jason Kucsma
Author: Jason Kucsma
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