OPDS

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OPDS is an emerging standard for integrating bookreaders with content catalogs and publishers. It is based on Atom, and in Atom you need an identifier for each entry. You could use any kind of ID: ISBN, URI, URN etc... Feedbooks uses a URI and plans to connect (via RDF) to URIs at resources such as OpenLibrary in the future.

If we need to manipulate these resources (Create, Read, Update and Delete), Atom has AtomPub which is a very elegant RESTful protocol & standard (take a look at Peter Keane's work: http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/pkeane/ & http://bit.ly/PGsto). - Hadrien


Comments

OPDS this lets us seamlessly integrate with providers such as Feedbooks. - Minh T.
If you mean a library that you can browse and access elsewere, you could basically use Atom/OPDS for everything (Calibre has an option to offer an OPDS catalog too). - Hadrien (of Feedbooks)
We have two blog posts about this on feedbooks : http://blog.feedbooks.com/?p=225 & http://blog.feedbooks.com/?p=271
If we continue to extend Atom, I'd also like to submit our work to the Atom syntax mailing list and the AtomPub mailing list if we implement interactions in AtomPub. - Hadrien

OPDS in an XO ecosystem

An example of how OPDS could be leveraged in an XO ecosystem could be to have a ‘central’ node in the school or classroom (this could be a dedicated server or any peer XO) maintain an OPDS catalog of content relevant to the class. Any XO can access that catalog through the local network and the books themselves would be stored on the server, on Feedbooks, or any other network source (the location of the file is pretty much transparent to the end user).
Now using OPDS as the local-library format for XO would push the technology beyond its original purpose but it could be an interesting concept, especially if it is expected that a significant proportion of books won’t be kept on the device, but rather accessed through the network.
Each machine could indeed maintain its own local OPDS-style catalog, with each book having an URIs pointing to either a network URL or to files on the local machine’s file system.

This would enable easy sharing of libraries between peer devices through the local network, which could leverage some synergies with the XO’s mesh networking capabilities. If they desire to do so, devices on the same network could easily expose their personal collection of books and let other devices access the books by fetching them from the peer or from the network.
A limitation of this approach, however, is that things like bookmarks, last read date, annotations, etc., which are specific to a given user/device, would not fall under the scope of OPDS. These could be covered by private extensions or some form of proprietary scheme.

-- Minh T.
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