UCT CS Research Document Archive

Flexible Design for Simple Digital Library Tools and Services

Phiri, Lighton and Hussein Suleman (2013) Flexible Design for Simple Digital Library Tools and Services. In Machanick, Philip and Mosiuoa Tsietsi, Eds. Proceedings SAICSIT '13 2013 South African Institute for Computer Scientists and Information Technologists, pages 160-169, East London, South Africa.

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The design of Digital Library Systems (DLSes) has evolved over time, both in sophistication and complexity, to complement the complex nature and sheer size of digital content being curated. However, there is also a growing demand from content curators, with relatively small-size collections, for simpler and more manageable tools and services for managing content. The reasons for this particular need are driven by the assumption that simplicity and manageability might ultimately translate to lower costs of maintenance of such systems. This paper builds on previous work in order to assess the flexible nature of the proposed design approach ---the explicit adoption of a minimalistic approach to the overall design of DLSes. A two-axis evaluation strategy was used to assess this proposed solution: a developer-oriented survey assessed the flexibility and simplicity; and a series of performance benchmarks were conducted to assess the scalability. In general, the study outlined some possible implications of simplifying DLS design; specifically the results from the developer-oriented user study indicate that simplicity in the design of the DLS repository sub-layer does not severely impact the interaction between the service sub-layer and the repository sub-layer. Furthermore, the scalability experiments indicate that desirable performance results for small- and medium-sized collections are attainable.

EPrint Type:Conference Paper
Keywords:digital libraries, dspace, minimalism, simplicity
ID Code:891
Deposited By:Phiri, Lighton
Deposited On:07 October 2013
Alternative Locations:http://dx.doi.org/10.1145/2513456.2513485