CORE update for July to September 2019

CORE releases CORE Discovery in Mozilla and Opera browsers

CORE Discovery, a browser extension that offers one-click access to free copies of research papers whenever you might hit a paywall, is now published in Mozilla and Opera Stores. The plug in was originally released as a Google Chrome extension.

CORE presents its full texts growth and introduces eduTDM at Open Science Fair 2019

CORE was active at the Open Science Fair 2019, an international event for all topics related to Open Science. CORE had two posters at this event; a general to the CORE service poster, which updated the community about the full text growth and wide usage of the CORE services, and a second one about the eduTDM. read more...

CORE Ambassador: David Walters

David Walters, Brunel UniversityDavid is the Open Access Officer at Brunel University London based within the Scholarly Communication & Rights Management team. He is an advocate of OA publishing, and of building services that realise the movement within local institutional communities. David has spoken at UKSG, NASIG, RLUK and Altmetric conferences about this topic in recent years. David is an ambassador for the CORE service.

Q: What does Open Access mean to you?
A: To us at Brunel, Open Access means many things – ideologically and practically. Most importantly, we consider Open Access to research output a critical, underpinning component on the journey toward an ‘Open Science’ world. Open Science encompasses many areas, aiming to enhance scientific and educational sectors.
As with many institutions, at Brunel we operate local OA services for our community, within an ever-growing landscape of technological and policy drivers. Open Access means creating an environment that supports policy drivers, whilst advantaging new technologies for our community as they emerge.
Much progress is being driven by these factors. However, it is as important to foster discussion and leadership amongst research communities. Open Access means researchers and students shaping and leading their subjects into new forms of science communication and practice.
At Brunel our role in supporting Open Access is to:
– Engage and inform our community about these issues as they evolve
– Build and tailor services to our community’s needs
– Recognise and celebrate ‘open’ activity by our researchers in all its forms read more...

CORE Ambassador: Milica Sevkusic

MilicaMilica is a librarian at the Institute of Technical Sciences of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts since 2007. Her education background is in art history and her previous work experience includes heritage policies and documentation standards, heritage-related civil society projects and digitisation, traditional librarianship and bibliography. Currently, her professional interests focus on Open Science, library services aimed at supporting research activities, training on academic services and tools, information literacy and research ethics. Since November 2014, she has been serving as the EIFL Open Access country coordinator in Serbia. In this capacity, she designed and coordinated the project – Revisiting open access journal policies and practices in Serbia, which was implemented with EIFL’s support in 2016–2017. She has also been involved with institutional repositories since 2013, when her affiliated institution implemented the first fully functional institutional repository in Serbia. She is now a member of the Repository Development Team at the University of Belgrade Computer Centre, which is currently the leading force in repository development in Serbia.
read more...

Using CORE Discovery in DSpace

Update 25.07.2019: Alex has created a guide for the CORE Discovery in Russian, which can be found at the ideafix.name blog.

During the Open Repositories 2019 conference CORE launched CORE Discovery, a service providing one-click access to free copies of research papers. The service is available as a browser extension as well as a repository plugin, which is what we will discuss in this blog post. We received plenty of interest from repository managers for this repository plugin which provides access to full texts on metadata only repository pages. One of them was Alex Efimov, a Staff Engineer at Ural Federal University who has shared his experience in installing the tool in DSpace. read more...

CORE update for April to June 2019

CORE releases CORE Discovery tool

CORE has released a BETA version of the CORE Discovery tool, which offers a one-click access to free copies of research papers whenever you might hit a paywall. 

CORE Discovery

Our free CORE Discovery service provides you with:

  • Highest coverage of freely available content. Our tests have shown CORE Discovery finding more free content than any other discovery system.
  • Free service for researchers by researchers. CORE Discovery is the only free content discovery extension developed by researchers for researchers. There is no major publisher or enterprise controlling and profiting from your usage data.
  • Best grip on open repository content. Due to CORE being a leader in harvesting open access literature, CORE Discovery has the best grip on open content from open repositories as opposed to other services that disproportionately focus only on content indexed in major commercial databases.
  • Repository integration and discovering documents without a DOI. The only service offering seamless and free integration into repositories. CORE Discovery is also the only discovery system that can locate scientific content even for items with an unknown DOI or which do not have a DOI.

The tool is available as:

  • A browser extension for researchers and anyone interested in reading scientific documents
  • Plugin for repositories, enriching metadata only pages in repositories with links to freely available copies of the paper
  • API for developers and third party services

If you are interested in the CORE Discovery plugin do get in touch

CORE receives Vannevar Bush Best Paper Award

Vannevar Bush Best Paper Award The CORE team has also won the Vannevar Bush Best Paper Award at JCDL 2019, one of the most highly recognised digital libraries conference in the world, for our work on analysing how soon authors deposit into repositories, which was driven by CORE data. A blog post about this is already available.
read more...

CORE highly visible at Open Repositories 2019 conference

CORE participated at the Open Repositories conference (10 – 13 June 2019), which took place in Hamburg, Germany. This year’s conference theme was “All the user needs”, where CORE received much attention and participated actively with 5 presentations. 

Assessing Compliance with the UK REF 2021 Open Access Policy

The recent increase in Open Access (OA) policies has brought forth important questions concerning the effect these policies have on the practice of publishing Open Access. In particular, is there evidence to support that mandating OA increases the proportion of OA outputs (in other words, do authors comply with relevant policies)? Furthermore, does mandating OA reduce the time from acceptance to the public availability of research outputs, and can compliance with OA mandates be effectively tracked? This work studies compliance with the UK REF 2021 Open Access policy. We use data from CrossRef and from CORE to create a dataset containing 1.6 million publications. We show that after the introduction of the UK OA policy, the proportion of OA research outputs in the UK has increased significantly, and the time lag between the acceptance of a publication and its Open Access availability has decreased, although there are significant differences in compliance between different repositories. We have developed a tool that can be used to assess publications’ compliance with the policy based on a list of DOIs. read more...

CORE becomes the world’s largest open access aggregator (or how about them stats 2018 edition)

This was another productive year for the CORE team; our content providers have increased, along with our metadata and full text records. This makes CORE the world’s largest open access aggregator

. More specifically, over the last 3 months CORE had more than 25 million users, tripling our usage compared to 2017. According to read more...

Increasing the Speed of Harvesting with On Demand Resource Dumps

 

I am currently working with Martin Klein, Matteo Cancellieri and Herbert Van de Sompel on a project funded by the European Open Science Cloud Pilot that aims to test and benchmark ResourceSync against OAI-PMH in a range of scenarios. The objective is to perform a quantitative evaluation that could then be used as evidence to convince data providers to adopt ResourceSync. During this work, we have encountered a problem related to the scalability of ResourceSync and developed a solution to it in the form of an On Demand Resource Dump. The aim of this blog post is to explain the problem, how we arrived to the solution and how the solution works.

The problem

One of the scenarios we have been exploring deals with a situation where the resources to be synchronised are metadata files of a small data size (typically from a few bytes to several kilobytes). Coincidentally, this scenario is very common for metadata in repositories of academic manuscripts, research data (e.g. descriptions of images), cultural heritage, etc.

The problem is related to the issue that while most OAI-PMH implementations typically deliver 100-1000 responses per one HTTP request, ResourceSync is designed in a way that requires resolving each resource individually. We have identified and confirmed by testing that for repositories with larges numbers of metadata items, this can have a very significant impact on the performance of harvesting, as the overhead of the HTTP request is considerable compared to the size of the metadata record.

More specifically, we have run tests over a sample of 357 repositories. The results of these tests show that while the speed of OAI-PMH harvesting ranges from 30-520 metadata records per second, depending largely on the repository platform, the speed of harvesting by ResourceSync is somewhere in the range of only 4 metadata records per second for harvesting the same content using existing ResourceSync client/server implementations and sequential downloading strategy. We are preparing a paper on this, so I am not going to disclose the exact details of the analysis at this stage.

As ResourceSync has been created to overcome many of the problems of OAI-PMH, such as:

  • being too flexible in terms of support for incremental harvesting, resulting in inconsistent implementations of this feature across data providers,
  • some of its implementations being unstable and less suitable for exchanging large quantities of metadata and
  • being only designed for metadata transfer, omitting the much needed support for content exchange

it is important that Resource Sync performs well under all common scenarios, including the one we are dealing with.

Can Resource Dumps be the solution?

An obvious option for solving the problem that is already offered by ResourceSync are Resource Dumps. While a Resource Dump can speed up harvesting to levels far exceeding those of OAI-PMH, it creates some considerable extra complexity on the side of the server. The key problem is that it creates the necessity to periodically package the data as a Resource Dump, which basically means running a batch process to produce a compressed (zip) file containing the resources.

The number of Resource Dumps a source needs to maintain is equal to the number of Capability Lists it maintains times the size of the Resource Dump Index. The minimum practical operational size of a Resource Dump Index is 2. This is to ensure we don’t remove a dump currently being downloaded by a client during the creation of a new dump. As we have observed that a typical repository may contain about 250 OAI-PMH sets (Capability Lists in the ResourceSync terminology), this implies the need for a significant data duplication and requirements on period creation of Resource Dumps if a source chose to use Resource Dumps as part of the harvesting process.

On Demand Resource Dumps

To deal with the problem, we suggest an extension of ResourceSync that will support the concept of an On Demand Resource Dump. An On Demand Resource Dump is a Resource Dump which is created, as the name suggests, whenever a client asks for it. More specifically, a client can scan through the list of resources presented in a Resource List or a Change List (without resolving them individually) and request from the source to package any set of the resources as a Resource Dump. This approach speeds up and saves processing on the side of both the source as well as the client. Our initial tests show that this enables ResourceSync to perform as well as OAI-PMH in the metadata only harvesting scenario when requests are sent sequentially (the most extreme scenario for ResourceSync). However, as ResourceSync requests can be parallelised, as opposed to OAI-PMH (due to the reliance of OAI-PMH on the resumption token), this makes ResourceSync a clear winner.

In the rest of this post, I will explain how this works and how it could be integrated with the ResourceSync specification.

There are basically 3 steps:

  1. defining that the server supports an on-demand Resource Dump,
  2. sending a POST request to the on-demand dump endpoint and
  3. receiving a response from the server that 100% conforms to the Resource Dump specification.

I will first introduce steps 2 and 3 and then I will come back to step 1.

Step 2: sending a POST request to the On Demand dump endpoint

We have defined an endpoint at https://core.ac.uk/datadump . You can POST it a list of resource identifiers (which can be discovered in a Resource List). In the example below, I am using curl to send it a list of resource identifiers in JSON which I want to get resolved. Obviously, the approach is not limited to JSON, it can be used for any resource listed in a Resource List regardless of its type. Try it by executing the code below in your terminal.

curl -d ‘[“https://core.ac.uk/api-v2/articles/get/42138752″,”https://core.ac.uk/api-v2/articles/get/32050″]‘ -H “Content-Type: application/json” https://core.ac.uk/datadump -X POST > on-demand-resource-dump.zip read more...

CORE’s Open Access content has reached the Moon! (or how about them stats 2017 edition)

For yet another year (see previous years 2016, 2015) CORE has been really productive; the number of  our content providers has increased and we have now more open access full text and metadata records than ever.

Our services are also growing steadily and we would like to thank the community for using the CORE API and CORE Datasets.

We also offer other services, such as the CORE Repositories Dashboard, CORE Publisher Connector and the CORE Recommender. We received great feedback with regards to the CORE Recommender, with George Macgregor, Institutional Repository Manager at Strathclyde University, reporting:

We are thrilled that this year CORE made it to the moon. Our next destination is Venus.

The CORE Team wishes you Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year!

* Note: Special thanks to Matteo Cancellieri for creating the graphics in this blog post.

CORE enhances library discovery services

The CORE service is working in partnership with ProQuest to deliver more content within their library discovery services (Ex Libris Primo and Ex Libris Summon).  What does this mean for the end user?  This means that search results will bring back more relevant content from OA repositories worldwide in addition to the existing library collection records.  The user will not have to go to a separate search interface to run the same search query.

Read more…