Author Archives: Mark Eaton

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Further into Alma

This week I dug into Alma a bit further, and learned how to do things like make sets and run jobs. I know I’m a bit behind the curve on this – other CUNY librarians have been doing these things for months – but it felt good to level up and figure this stuff out. […]

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Building incrementally

As soon as I finished the Open Journal Matcher and released it to the world, I wanted to rewrite it from the ground up. When I looked at the code, it was clear that so much could be improved: from better variable names, to clearer flow, and more concise functionality. I had to resist the […]

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Slow down, be thorough

Since (for now) the Open Journal Matcher is built without using a proper task queue, I’ve been spending a lot of effort handling the various errors thrown by my Google Cloud Function. This is both satisfying and annoying: it is nice to catch and handle each error properly, but it takes some digging to figure […]

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On variable costs

Now that the Open Journal Matcher is live and receiving traffic, I’m wondering how much it is going to cost to keep running. There isn’t an obvious answer. Mostly this is because Google Cloud Functions scale with your project. This is definitely good for scalability and availability, but it makes it much more difficult to […]

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On scaling

I’ve been using PythonAnywhere to host web projects for some time now, and while I am very happy with the service, one of its weak points is scalability. This is especially problematic when trying to handle unpredictable spikes in traffic. While there are plenty of platforms that will scale seamlessly along with your traffic, PA […]

Posted in pythonanywhere | 1 Response

Alma

Recently, CUNY libraries migrated to Alma, our new library services platform. Alma is a pretty mighty piece of software. It can manage many, many library functions. Given how much it does, it amazes me that it works. I would love to look at the codebase for a bit, just to get a sense as to […]

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Access to readings during remote instruction

Our students are facing a potential textbook crisis this fall. Many may not even realize it yet. But with in-person library services potentially greatly curtailed, one crucial source of textbooks – the library reserve desk – may not be readily available to our students. The librarians are working to mitigate this crisis on several fronts. […]

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Recalibrating

Now that the Open Journal Matcher is more or less complete and shared with the world, I feel like it’s time for a new beginning. I like this part of my job: occasionally I arrive at a point where I get to reset and consider what’s next. I’m going to take a different approach. In […]

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Further into Mastodon

Joining Mastodon in 2017 turned out to be a positive change for me. Twitter had been making me depressed and anxious, and I needed a way out. At that point Mastodon – an open source social network – was unfamiliar to me and seemed rough around the edges. But the people I found there were […]

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Open Journal Matcher is here

I’m very pleased to let you know about a project I’m releasing today, the Open Journal Matcher. It’s a resource for people looking to find a suitable journal for their work. Paste in a draft abstract and see the best matching open access journals! Open Journal Matcher uses a natural language processing library called spaCy […]

Posted in doaj, journal recommender, open access, open source | Comments closed
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