Highlights from Samvera Connect 2017

Several of Library IT’s staff attended the Samvera Connect 2017 conference in Chicago, this past November 6-9th.  The conference had nearly 200 attendees from over 90 institutions, representing mostly higher-education institutions but a few corporate, non-profit and government agencies were in attendance as well. The Samvera Connect conference is an opportunity for users of the Samvera framework to come together to share knowledge, collaborate in technical development, and build the Samvera community.

The 2017 Samvera Connect conference offered many new changes — a new name, new tools and a new framework. Starting with the name, Samvera is the new name for Hydra, the open-source framework Yale University Library uses for digital collections discovery, FindIt.

The Stack Is Getting a Makeover 

Currently, Samvera  has 3 major components:

  • the Fedora repository software as the repository layer.
  • Solr indexes, providing quick access to information about an institution’s resources.
  • Blacklight, a Ruby on Rails plugin that sits above Solr and provides faceted searching, browsing and tailored views on objects.

Announced at the conference, coming late spring of 2018, Samvera will be rolling out a new framework and tools. In the new paradigm, institutions will have the ability to implement one or all of the components in the framework to develop a repository.

New Tools:

  • Hyrax: the user interface around common repository features. This tool replaces Blacklight. This tool can be used independent of the other components and gives developers one consistent tool to use to create solutions instead of disparate home-grown ones. Hyrax continues to use Fedora 4 and Solr.
  • Hyku: a complete turn-key repository solution
  • Valkyrie: a new tool that enables multiple backends for storage of files and metadata

Library IT staff conference attendees were:

  • Nadia Boumahdi, Application Programmer
  • Martin Lovell, Application Programmer
  • Tracy MacMath, User Interface Programmer
  • George Ouellette, Digital Collections and Repository Service Manager
  • Kalee Sprague, Senior Systems Librarian for Integrated Access

The consensus among the group was that there will be exciting developments to watch for in the Samvera community over the next year.

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