Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

IWMW 2000: A Controversial Proposal

Slides for the plenary talk on "IWMW 2000: A Controversial Proposal" presented at the IWMW 2000 event held at the University of Bath on 6-8 September 2000.

See http://www.ukoln.ac.uk/web-focus/events/workshops/webmaster-2000/sessions .html#kelly-1

  • Login to see the comments

  • Be the first to like this

IWMW 2000: A Controversial Proposal

  1. 1. A Controversial Proposal: Externally-Hosted Web Services Brian Kelly UK Web Focus UKOLN University of Bath UKOLN is funded by Resource: The Council for Museums, Archives and Libraries, the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) of the Higher and Further Education Funding Councils, as well as by project funding from the JISC and the European Union. UKOLN also receives support from the University of Bath where it is based. Email: B.Kelly@ukoln.ac.uk URL: http://www.ukoln.ac.uk/ Summary This talk describes a variety of externally- hosted web services and ponders on their applicability for UK HEIs. Summary This talk describes a variety of externally- hosted web services and ponders on their applicability for UK HEIs.
  2. 2. 2 Ring Any Bells? • You manage a Web service or create departmental Web pages • Your job was fun once, but now it's difficult to keep on top the job • You need extra resources, but can’t get them • Your good Unix systems staff have left for $$$$ • There is a software solution, but it's expensive • You tried to install the 14 day evaluation version, but couldn't get it to work • When you eventually got it to work, your PC wasn't powerful enough to run it • You can't afford an upgrade to your PC
  3. 3. 3 An Answer To The Webmaster's Prayer? A solution may be available: • A solution which is free (in many cases) • A solution which requires no software installation • A solution which requires no investment in hardware • A solution which exploits the network – and keeps UKERNA in business The solution is deployment of externally-hosted Web services Sounds great? But will it mean outsourcing your IT department? Sounds great? But will it mean outsourcing your IT department?
  4. 4. 4 What Do We Mean? Remember HTML Validation services: • Enter a URL into a Web form and check it validates • Add an image if your page is valid HTML • Link the page to the validation for on-the-fly validation - an externally- hosted web service Another example is the hit counterAnother example is the hit counter
  5. 5. 5 What edge of this spectrum are you closest to? Sorry I'm indecisive. I can't decide. Your View So Far Sounds great, no software to install, available for free. What else can be done in this way? No way! I don't want to be reliant on anyone else. Besides, I'll be out of a job if this idea takes off – this is out-sourcing. Question Has anyone made use of externally- hosted web services? Question Has anyone made use of externally- hosted web services?
  6. 6. 6 Hit Counters to Web Stats Hit counters have developed into comprehensive Web statistical services See <http://www.exploit-lib.org/issue5/indicators/> Comparison of externally-hosted and licensed approaches to be published in Exploit Interactive in issue 7. See <http://www.exploit-lib.org/issue5/indicators/> Comparison of externally-hosted and licensed approaches to be published in Exploit Interactive in issue 7. Model • Link to image held on remote Web site • Follow link to remote site to get graphical display of hits • Use JavaScript to record PC profile Model • Link to image held on remote Web site • Follow link to remote site to get graphical display of hits • Use JavaScript to record PC profile D
  7. 7. 7 eGroups Mailing Lists eGroups lets you set up free mailing lists eGroups provides an email and Web interface Calendars, polls and databases are also provided by eGroups How does this compare with Listproc or Majordomo installed locally? D You can use www.smartgroups.com if you want a UK-based equivalent You can use www.smartgroups.com if you want a UK-based equivalent
  8. 8. 8 Content Management Manilla is a Web-based content management tool. You can buy the software for $899 or use it for free at Editthispage.com D
  9. 9. 9 Managing Link Gateways LinkBank.com enables link gateways to be managed: • Bulk upload • Email notification of broken links • Summaries of usage • User "sort by" option D See also JumpList.com See also JumpList.com
  10. 10. 10 User Feedback User feedback can include voting systems, quizzes, etc. D See <http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/ issue23/web-focus/> and <http://ezpolls.mycomputer.com/> See <http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/ issue23/web-focus/> and <http://ezpolls.mycomputer.com/> http://www.responders.net/http://www.responders.net/ See also <http://www. freepolls.com/>
  11. 11. 11 Notification Services You can register a page at Netmind. You will receive a message when the page is updated. The Netmind service is used at Exploit Interactive to provide notification of a new issue. The Netmind service is used at Exploit Interactive to provide notification of a new issue. D
  12. 12. 12 Server Down - Notification Recently the Exploit Interactive Web server crashed after a virus checker caused memory leaks. Internetseer's free Website monitoring service is now used to check the site hourly. Up to 230 URLs can be checked for free. http://www.internetseer.comhttp://www.internetseer.com
  13. 13. 13 Submit-it Services Rather than manually submitting key resources to many search engines you can: • Purchase and install an application locally • Subscribe to a Web- based service • Use a free Web- based service http://www.scrubtheweb.com/http://www.scrubtheweb.com/ http://www.submitit.com/http://www.submitit.com/ Exploit Interactive has used ScrubTheWeb – reviewed in issue 6 Exploit Interactive has used ScrubTheWeb – reviewed in issue 6
  14. 14. 14 Search Engines If you are one of the 50 HEIs without a search facility on your Web site, why not let a third- party index your Web site? All you need is a few lines of HTML Nene College and St. Mary's College use FreeFind and Derby University uses AltaVista Nene College and St. Mary's College use FreeFind and Derby University uses AltaVista
  15. 15. 15 Content Free news feeds, classified ads, jokes, cartoons, quotations) can be included on your Web site http://ezpolls.mycomputer.com/http://ezpolls.mycomputer.com/ http://notinmybackyard.com/http://notinmybackyard.com/ Get Guardian news feeds for free from <http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/free/> Get Guardian news feeds for free from <http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/free/>
  16. 16. 16 Calendars Why bother with Outlook when you can get calendar facilities for free? See also http://www.when.com/ & http://www.ft.com/personaloffice/ See also http://www.when.com/ & http://www.ft.com/personaloffice/ You can also add your own local news feeds You can also add your own local news feeds <http://my.netscape.com/><http://my.netscape.com/>
  17. 17. 17 File Store Your file store can be stored remotely Note: • Tools can integrate with Windows Explorer • Growing interest in Storage Area Networks (SANs) Note: • Tools can integrate with Windows Explorer • Growing interest in Storage Area Networks (SANs) See <http://www.idrive.com/>See <http://www.idrive.com/>
  18. 18. 18 Your Intranet Why not host your Intranet remotely? Intranets.com provide: • Document management tools • Email capabilities • Group calendars • Instant messaging • …
  19. 19. 19 Issues Many externally-hosted web services are available, but: • What about the dependencies of the network(s)? • What about the reliance of the third-party? Will the company stay in business? • The interface isn't as rich as desktop applications • If the service is funded by advertising revenue, with use contravene the JANET AUP? • Will large-scale use of such services generate large network bills? • Is my data secure and private? • Is my data reusable and available in an open format? • Is is sensible for a mission-critical service? Remember the WebTechs incident?Remember the WebTechs incident?
  20. 20. 20 RDN Include The Resource Discovery Network Centre (RDNC) coordinates the work of RDN hubs, such as SOSIG, EEVL, BIOME, etc. Institutions may be reluctant to link to hubs as they want users to stay on the University Web site. The RDNC is developing the RDN-I (Include) service to give the appearance that the hub is located within the institution. The RDN will be providing an externally-hosted service The RDN will be providing an externally-hosted service
  21. 21. 21 The DNER The DNER: • JISC-funded initiative managed by Lorcan Dempsey • Distributed National Electronic Resource • Seamless access from institutions to national resources (MIMAS, BIDS, EDINA, etc) • Based on intelligent server software (broker) and support for standards (XML, Dublin Core, Z39.50, etc.) • An example of Business-to-Business application JISC's vision for the DNER has many similarities to the externally-hosted Web services we have seen, but based on open standards. JISC's vision for the DNER has many similarities to the externally-hosted Web services we have seen, but based on open standards.
  22. 22. 22 What About The Users? "I use the external services because the University doesn't allow me access to install on the server and because it doesn't make any appropriate tools available." Tom Wilson, Department of Information Studies, University of Sheffield "Our search facility is currently hosted by atomz.com , some calendering by Yahoo!, so I'm increasingly drawn to externally hosted solutions... more time to catch up on other, more pressing work, until they all stop working." Ian Usher, Webmonger, Department of Geography, UCL At one university 60% of UGs arrived with a HotMail account, which they used in preference to the University email account. • Should the university support use of HotMail? • Can they afford not to? • What will happen when they arrive with a calendar service? At one university 60% of UGs arrived with a HotMail account, which they used in preference to the University email account. • Should the university support use of HotMail? • Can they afford not to? • What will happen when they arrive with a calendar service?
  23. 23. 23 ASP Application Service Providers (ASP): • Commercial sector already moving in this direction • Sun promote access to StarOffice across network in preference to MS Office on local PC • Futurelink.net renting MS Office across network for £79 / month • Search Yahoo! for ASP for directories Are Athens and Mailbase early examples of ASPs? Are Athens and Mailbase early examples of ASPs?
  24. 24. 24 Conclusions Externally hosted web services: • Are available in many different areas • Arguments against their use (reliability, privacy, trust, performance) should diminish as they mature • Their usability will improve as W3C developments (DOM, XHTML, SVG) become more available • Your user community will use them (are using them) in any case • Of particular interest to the FE community? • Will we see a move towards use of Application Service Providers (ASPs)? • A valuable resource for the Web Manager • What "the Joined-Up Web" is about?

×