Connecting Libraries and Vendor Platforms: Have we advanced from the Black Box to Open Systems?
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"No technology product created for libraries can reasonably satisfy the needs of all libraries “out of the box.” Rather, products provide a basic core of functionality designed to serve the general needs of libraries, with configuration options to set operational and cosmetic details for individual implementations. Many libraries, however, need to implement new functionality not delivered with the base product. Libraries might be able to press the developers of the products, developed under either proprietary or open source licenses, to create enhancements to the core system to meet these needs. A more sustainable model involves the use of application programming interfaces (API)s that allow library programmers to write code to extend the capabilities of the product, to enable interoperability with other applications, or to extract and manipulate data. Most of the major library management and discovery applications offer APIs that open up data and functionality to libraries and to third party developers.
This session aims to reveal the extent to which libraries can expect to extend products through exercising the APIs provided with their key technology products. I a dynamic debate format, the moderator will explore this topic with the chief technology or strategy officers of the major library vendors and with one or more library technologists involved in projects that rely on APIs.