Kepler: Author-Based Archivelets

From: Stevan Harnad <harnad_at_COGPRINTS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 14:34:42 +0100

On Thu, 31 May 2001, Subbiah Arunachalam wrote:

> What is Kepler and how does it help the OAI community? Please enlighten me.
> Arun
> Maly, Kurt and Mohammad Zubair and Xiaoming Liu. [39]"Kepler - An OAI
> Data/Service Provider for the Individual" D-Lib Magazine 7(4)
> (April 2001) ( -
> This article describes a simple Open Archives Initiative
> repository tool called Kepler. By using this application
> individual researchers can participate in the OAI with a minimum of
> effort. Kepler is a bit different from other OAI repository tools.
> First, it uses a file system to store its data, not a database.
> Second, and more importantly, Kepler works in conjunction with a
> "registration" server. This registration server is modeled on the idea
> of peer-to-peer networking schemes such as Napster. If used in the way
> it was designed, Kepler can facilitate wide-scale dissemination of
> scholarly papers and information. No fuss. No muss. - ELM

As far as I can tell (and I hope my more technical colleagues will be
able to confirm or correct this), Kepler is a kind of smaller-scale archive-maker. It too creates an (OAI-compliant?)
archive, but at the individual rather than the institutional level.

As such, if it works and is robust, it is more than welcome! It can
contribute to the freeing of the refereed literature.

Only three things worry me about Kepler.

(1) It looks like it is appealing to authors to SELF-PUBLISH (rather
than merely to self-archive their research, pre- and post-publication).
This "vanity press" motivation is, in my opinion, at odds with the
self-archiving intiative, whose primary goal is to free the refereed
journal literature on-line.

(2) One advantage of institutional rather than individual archives is
that it puts the long-term preservation function into stronger and more
durable hands. Can individuals promise this same reliability?

(3) The association with Napster is not a confidence-enhancing

But the proof of the pudding is in the eating. If the Kepler software
works, and is robust, reliable and lasting, then I certainly hope
authors will use it, and register and maintain their archives at OAI.

"Peer Review" and "Preservation" are high on the list of prima facie
worries that are retarding self-archiving. It is very important that
our efforts refute rather reinforce such worries...

Stevan Harnad
Professor of Cognitive Science
Department of Electronics and phone: +44 23-80 592-582
             Computer Science fax: +44 23-80 592-865
University of Southampton
Highfield, Southampton

NOTE: A complete archive of the ongoing discussion of providing free
access to the refereed journal literature online is available at the
American Scientist September Forum (98 & 99 & 00 & 01):

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Received on Wed Jan 03 2001 - 19:17:43 GMT

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