Islandora/Fedora 4 Project Update II

On Friday, February 27th, the Fedora 4 Interest Group met for the second time to discuss the progress of our big upgration (the first meeting was back at the end of January). The full notes from the meeting are here, but I'll summarize some of the highlights:

Project Updates

The project has entered its second month with plenty accomplished. Nick was sent to Code4Lib 2015 in Portland, Oregon to work with our Technical Lead, Danny Lamb. The two worked on the proof-of-concept, and it was presented as a lightning talk (video demo). Additionally, Nick and Danny worked with the Hydra and Fedora communities on a shared data model, Hydra Works, which evolved into the Fedora Community Data Model.

After Code4Lib 2015, Nick and Danny focused on updating the Technical Design document, that provides:

  1. an understanding of the Islandora 7.x-2.x design rationale
  2. the importance of using an integration framework
  3. the use of camel
  4. inversion of control and camel
  5. camel and scripting languages
  6. Islandora Sync
  7. Solr and Triple store indexing
  8. Islandora (Drupal).

Or, to sum up the new ways of Islandora in one imge:

Nick and Danny also focused on the development virtual environment (DevOps) for the project. Nick decided to move away from using Chef and Berkshelf due to dependency support. The DevOps setup was moved to basic bash scripts and Vagrant. Contributors to the project can now spin a virtual development environment (which includes the proof-of-concept) in about 5 minutes with a single command: vagrant up. Instructions here.

Nick also focused on project documentation and documentation deployment. All document for the project resides in the git repository for the project, in Markdown format. The documentation can be generated into a static site with MkDocs and thendeployed to GitHub Pages. The documentation for the project can be viewed here, and information about how the documentation is built and deployed can be found here. There is also an outline of how you can contribute to the project here (regardless of your background. We need far more than programmers).

A new use case template makes bringing your ideas to the table much easier. Check out some of the existing use cases for examples - and add yours!

Nick, Danny, and Melissa also did an interview for Duraspace.

Upgration

The upgration portion of the project is dependant on a couple of sub-items of the project to play out, but continues in tandem.

The first sub-item is the Fedora Audit Service. The Islandora community make use of the audit service in Fedora 3.x for PREMIS and other provance services. It currently does not exist in Fedora 4.x, so the community has come together to plan our the service over two conference calls that will outline use cases and functional requirements, which will then translate to JIRA tickets for a Fedora code sprint in late March. Notes from the first meeting are here. Nick has been tasked with identifying if the community should use the PROV-O ontology, the PREMIS ontology, or a combination of both. The second item is bridging the work of Mike Durbin’s migration-utils and Danny’s Apache Camel work in the Islandora & Fedora 4 project. While Nick was working to create test fixtures for Mike and Danny, he discovered a bug in Fedora 3.8.0, which will need to be resolved before any test fixtures can come out of York University's upgration pilot.

Nick and Danny will most likely focus on migration work and community contributed developer tasks in March.

Funding

The Islandora Foundation is pleased to welcome Simon Fraser University as a Partner for their support of the Fedora 4 project. Longtime member PALS has also earmarked some of their membership dues to help out the upgration. If you or your instition are interested in being financial supporters, please drop me a line.

Other News

Contributor Kevin Bowrin wrote up an account of exprience installing and trying out the work our team has done so far. Check it out.