Monday, January 28, 2008

PubMed Search : UWA Widget Netvibes

Web Widgets (or gadget, badge, module, capsule, snippet, mini and flake) are small elements that can be installed, by choice, in all kind of web environments like Netvibes, iGoogle, Pageflakes, Windows Live ... and many social network tools. Often they contain compressed information to be viewed or listened at, or they offer quick search options. Basic idea is to make these widgets universal, which means: I make the basic design/content once and everybody can share it with me or take it's own copy into it's own environment by choice. It comes in various options: But, to make it completely flexible (but also risking complete chaos) many tools are available to add, submit, alter, adjust these codes and widgets to make them appear in another way or platform. While Netvibes is trying to make their UWA's in sync with the OpenSocial stuff, other offer tools to make this happening step by step, like www.widgetbox.com or for mobile widgets, www.widsets.com How did I make that PubMed Search UWA widget?
  1. First I did start with a QuickSearch Toolbar and included the Pubmed Search, together with our LinkOut/Outside tool code & institutional MyNCBI.
  2. For people who can not -or are not allowed to - install Toolbars, you make a simple SearchBox html-code page that uses the PubMed Search via the Toolbar. This html can be used to put in special websites, intranets etc.
  3. Or you could submit it to Netvibes EcoSystem to create a so-called mini-api. This Mini-Api was to be used only IN Netvibes, and just did not work somewhere else. To make it live, you had to have some space on a server to put the html-pages live. For this purpose i could use the CMS of the University of Groningen.
  4. Converting this Mini-Api into the Universal Widget API was needed because Netvibes pulled the plug of the support for Min-Api's and focussed ( the only thing they COULD and SHOULD do) on making universal coded widgets.
  5. Here's how the Pubmed xml page looks from the search box in UWA configuration. Mind you, I could NOT host this on our CMS because it doesn't accept XML-files NOT created by the CMB. Therefore I host them on a private server for now, until I can move them to a special server from the UMCG.
  6. Submitting it to the EcoSystem as a UWA at Netvibes takes a few days to become live, but you can make links to the modules at once, to share. See the right side of this blog for the most used resources in our organisation.
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