SRU interface to the CERL Thesaurus
CERL members and other interested institutions may make use of the CERL Thesaurus in their own database environment as
- a supporting tool for automated query expansion, similar to the Assisted Searching functionality as provided in the Hand Press Book database and the CERL Portal.
- a source of reference for imprint and printing place names as well as names of other persons and corporate bodies from the hand press era, including links to images of printers' devices and other electronic resources.
- an access point to provenance information hidden in library catalogues throughout Europe.
- or any other yet unconsidered purpose.
For this purposes the CERL Thesaurus can be accessed by a remote software application (e.g. a database system) via the Search and Retrieve URL (SRU) protocol. SRU is a newly emerging protocol for querying remote databases. It might be understood as a descendant of the widely used Z39.50 protocol, but based on XML and HTTP and thus remarkably reducing the complexity of Z39.50.
The CERL Thesaurus SRU interface currently supports the protocol version 1.1 and is available from http://sru.cerl.org/thesaurus. Please see the Explain record for details on the available indexes.
Records are available in MARCXML 1) and a specific output format for implementations of Assisted Searching. A description of the record structure is available from this document: CTAS Format Description v1.1 - changes to the former CTAS version (CTAS Format Description v1.0) are marked in red.
- Please find the full SRU specification on the Library of Congress' website: http://www.loc.gov/standards/sru/