European Libraries and Electronic Resources
in Mathematical Sciences

Project Description

Workplan of the Project

Workplan of the Project

The workplan is structured using the convention of Workpackages and Tasks. The following workplan gives for each Workpackage/Task a descriptive text of the aims of the Workpackage/Task and the outcome (deliverable) of the Task. Workpackage descriptions:


General project management and coordination. Knowledge and skills transfer between consortium members. Managing copyright, licensing, and legal issues. Relation to the Commission.


T1.1 User Requirements
Broad information and active integration of the mathematical community about the content and the aims of the project (publications, lectures at internal and national meetings and workshops in Mathematics), leading to more feedback of the user community, and thus to a better streamlining of the general EULER aims. Discussion in the mathematical community on different levels (international, Europe, in several countries) Build up a open electronic discussion forum (Mailing list and server) for EULER. Form a discussion group from European mathematicians for gathering more user-stimulation for the project (mailing list and meetings); the permanent dialogue with special user groups The user needs will be collected in a report.

Deliverable: D1.1 Report on User Needs

T1.2 Revision of methodologies, Standard developments monitoring
Revising parts of the projects methodologies during the project to ensure flexibility with respect to technological changes.

* test and evaluate alternative concepts for the EULER system

* integrate new relevant developments in the EULER system

Observing the developments of the important standards such as Dublin Core metadata or Z39.50 protocol, and the development of new relevant standards.

Actively participate at the relevant conferences in the fields of information science and computer science (especially the fields of metadata, search and retrieval, and Internet)

Deliverable: D1.2 Periodical revision and internal standard development reports


This Work Package will built the basic set of EULER Metadata Databases that are finally accessible from the EULER Engine. The Work Package is subdivided into five Tasks covering the five initial resource types that are part of EULER:
* T2.1 Scientific Bibliographic Databases

* T2.2 Library OPACs

* T2.3 Preprint Servers

* T2.4 Refereed Electronic Journals

* T2.5 Mathematical Internet Resources

Bibliographic Databases and OPACs will cover the broader scenario of automatic metadata to metadata conversion.

Refereed Electronic Journals, Preprint Servers, and Mathematical Internet Resources will cover the broader scenario of resources harvesting, metadata creation (automatically or manually), and access to networked resources.

From the technical point, T2.3, T2.4 and T2.5 on one side, and T2.1 and T2.2 on the other side, will share similar approaches and tools.

All resources will be made accessible as standardised EULER metadata database as specified in WP-1.

T2.1 Bibliographic Databases
This task will implement automatic format conversion of a selected set of the data of MATH Database (Zentralblatt für Mathematik, more than 1.500.000 entries covering the world-wide mathematical literature from 1931 to present) from the proprietary MATH format to the common EULER Dublin Core based format. Additional data from the "Jahrbuch über die Fortschritte der Mathematik" may be included in this conversion process if resources permit. "Jahrbuch" covers the most important literature in mathematics from 1868-1943. The "Jahrbuch"-data will be available as an electronic database during the EULER project (about 180.000 entries). The original data will be enriched with necessary means of identification (e.g. internationally accepted standard document identifiers for single articles) to enable the effective exchange of data between different systems.

D 2.1 A frontend DC metadata database for the data of MATH Database incl. documentation

T2.2 OPACs
This task will produce routines for the automatic extraction of (subsets of) relevant OPAC entries and conversion routines for the format conversion to the EULER Dublin Core based format, including automatic update procedures. A standardised EULER metadata database with these data will be made accessible to be queried by the central EULER Engine. Connections to existing online document delivery services (e.g. at SUB Göttingen) will be included, based on forwarding relevant data directly to the ordering systems.

Deliverables: D2.2 A frontend DC metadata database for the data of every participant OPAC (incl. documentation).

T2.3 Preprint Servers
This task will produce frontend DC metadata database for preprint series and other grey literature of scientific institutions that are electronically available through the Internet. The metadata database will be produced by means of automatic gathering/harvesting the original sources, and automatic conversion to Dublin Core. The database will integrate preprint referencing, metadata search and full-text retrieval. In addition, the automatic supply of institutes preprints to specialised libraries, and the subsequent use at the library (including long-term availability) will be implemented and tested.

It's expected to be sufficient to include only preprints of relatively few institutes in this task. Other (national) initiatives such as the German DFN project MathNet, and the collections of French preprints will be informed of EULER results and requirements, and will be asked to contribute to a common development. Likewise, EULER will monitor activities in this sector in WP-1, and refine its specifications to enable concerted international actions.

Deliverables: D2.3 A frontend DC metadata database for preprints and other grey literature published by research institutions, incl. docoumentation.

T2.4 E-journals
The goal of this task is to systematically add metadata descriptions to a carefully selected set of high-quality peer reviewed electronic mathematical journals and other publications. Metadata descriptions for these electronic publications will

* be used to generate a EULER DC metadata database, thus enabling users to effectively search for electronic publications in the same way as in all other EULER metadata databases.

* be used in the production process of the electronic journal issues themselves, by the use of fully automated procedures that generate all the necessary index- and table-ofcontents pages as well as individual journal articles homepages out of the metadata descriptions. Costly and time-consuming manual preparation (as it is done today) will be eliminated. Metadata will substantially facilitate and speed up the preparation of the final electronic product, and enhance its quality and usability.

* provide the basic means of enabling Online Delivery of the publications irrespective of protocols and formats. This is an important point when it comes to technology changes.

The collection of electronic publications to be covered in this task of the EULER project will be taken from the Electronic Library of Mathematics, that is distributed through EMS's system of Internet servers, EMIS,

D 2.4 A frontend DC metadata database for EMIS electronic journals, incl. Documentation.

T2.5 Internet Mathematical Resources
The goal of this task is to comprehensively collect publications, information, resources and services in Mathematics published on the Internet, to offer them as a searchable and browseable service and to prepare the integration with the other "more traditional" bibliographic databases and fulltext publications in project EULER by creating DC metadata records for them.

Sub-task a: Developing a quality controlled information gateway Mathematics, carefully selecting, describing and organising Internet resources in this subject area. The participants will cooperate in the selection of relevant mathematical resources from the Internet into an quality controlled service. The approaches and solutions of the EU project DESIRE (, where Lund is a main partner, will be built upon and become adapted for usage in one subject area, Mathematics.

Sub-task b: Using a harvesting robot to systematically and automatically gather "all" mathematical resources on the Internet into a "Mathematical Web Index". Build a robot generated "Mathematical Web Index" consisting of "all" mathematical Web pages and resources on the Internet with focus on HTML pages. This builds upon the robot software developed for the project DESIRE and methodologies first tested in the "Engineering Electronic Library, Sweden (EELS)" ( project. To increase the quality of this database, NetLab will offer a Dublin Core Metadata creation and support site for publishers of European mathematical Web pages, connected to the database.

A general outcome of the work of task T2.5 will comprise the identification of possible limitations and necessary improvements of the Dublin Core. A list of recommendations for modification or adaptation of the Dublin Core scheme will be published as a project report.

D2.5.1 A quality controlled information gateway Mathematics, incl. a frontend DC metadata with documentation database
D2.5.2 A robot-generated "Mathematical Web Index", incl. metadata and documentation
D2.5.3 A public Dublin Core Metadata creation and support site for Mathematicians

WP-3 EULER engine and user interface

This WP will carry on the design and the implementation of the EULER engine. The EULER engine acts as an "intelligent" gateway between users and the metadata databases produced in WP-2 by providing: a) user oriented interfaces and help tools b) the capability to re-map searches and browsing to the metadata databases c) the capability to collect answers (i.e. hits) and to present them offering different filtering and sorting options The software development will be based on prototyping.

The solution will be based on the Z39.50 standard, the Zebra server from Index Data in Copenhagen, an enhancement of the EUROPAGATE (EU project) gateway and improvements and developments from other related projects carried out by NetLab. The software solution has to be adapted to the EULER profile and metadata format and to the user requirements.

Metadata databases for the single services will be built up by the partners in WP-2 using metadata creation and/or conversion to the agreed EULER format, a variant of the Dublin Core Element Set. The metadata for all databases will be interoperable and allow congruent and parallel searching in all databases.

T3.1 Functional specification and design of the EULER engine and user interface
The task will perform the EULER engine functional analysis and will design its architecture. User requirements derived from WP-1, and characteristics of the software and standards used will be the reference for the functional design.

Since the solution will build upon the Z39.50 Zebra server, the following has to be agreed upon and defined in order to allow the interchange between the existing databases and the Z39.50 servers: a) EULER's metadata format (Dublin Core variant), the fields and qualifiers used b) Metadata encoding (HTML, XML for separate metadata?) c) The semantical interoperability, cataloguing rules d) EULER Z39.50 profile: attribute set (subset of Bib1, now extended with GILS, or a coming DC attribute set for Z39.50); list of search features supported in all databases (extended from ONE project), functionality. GRS1 record format delivered from the servers e) Transfer syntax to clients (e.g. GRS1).

The establishment of the different separated frontend databases carrying the metadata is part of WP-2.

The interface to metadata databases will depend on choices and implementations in WP-1 and WP-2.

D3.1 Internal report: specification and design considerations

T3.2 Prototyping of EULER engine and user interface
Adaptation and improvement of the ZEBRA server software and the EUROPAGATE gateway for simultaneous searching in Z39.50 databases.

a) Develop a EULER implementation of Zebra b) Install the ZEBRA software for frontend metadata databases at all sites contributing with a database and wishing to use this standard solution c) Do a EULER adaptation of the EUROPAGATE gateway, incl. user interface d) Improve the performance of the EUROPAGATE gateway (options investigated: improved speed when several databases are used, start display before all results are received, duplicate removal; test Java or Javascript solution for gateway and user interface)

D3.2 Development and implementation of a prototype of the engine and user interface

T3.3 Validation of the prototype
A selected group of mathematicians and librarians will perform user interface validation to match user requirements defined in WP-1 immediately after finishing the prototype release. This will be an iterative process, the results being fed back into the implementation tasks. Testing to debug and assess EULER engine components and metadata databases integration.
A team of experts will start the development of a tutorial to be included in the final version.

D3.3 Internal report: Evaluation of the prototype

T3.4 Development and implementation of the demonstrator
This task is carried on to correct, complete and improve the prototype according to the results of the validation stage. The final demonstrator will include: a) access to all resources; b) a tutorial; and c) support for multilinguality.

D3.4 EULER information system demonstrator


After the release of EULER Engine beta version selected groups of users will start system exploitation and evaluation. The WP intends to measure the system suitability and scalability and the satisfaction level of users with the service. Mainly, University and Scientific partners will be involved in this stage. This is done in part in parallel with WP-3 to enable feed-back of first evaluation results into the development process.

Users groups creation involving students, teachers, researchers and librarians. Tools to be used to capture their feedback and observation will include: on-line forms (WWW), questionnaires-based interviews to specialised end-users, librarians assisted usage sessions. System test will evaluate at least the following parameters:

* the quality of data retrieved

* the user capability to discover, navigate and get resources

* the mismatch level between initial user requirements and system functionalities

* the overall performances (e.g. bottlenecks, if any)

* the integration level of EULER system with pre-existing services at partners sites, including both data servers and user clients.

The task will analyse and describe system flaws and possible improvements concerning:
* Search Engine effectiveness in delivering information to mathematicians

* Results quality

* Performances and scalability of the overall system

* Integration with further services (e.g. ILL, document delivery)

* Technical and methodological changes due to standards or software evolutions occurred during the project life cycle.

Major input to this task will be provided by the EMS and the two library schools (FHK and FHHH) who have all agreed to sponsor this project.

Deliverable: D4 "Internal EULER Evaluation report"


T5.1 Information Dissemination
Information dissemination will take place via professional journal articles, presentations at conferences, TAP concertation meetings, and similar events. Relevant reports of the project will be made publicly available on the World Wide Web.

D5.1.1 List of publications, presentations at events and workshops
D5.1.2 WWW document server with public EULER reports

T5.2 Exploitation Preparations
The final exploitation plan for EULER services and other project results will be prepared, based on the results of WP-4. Commercial exploitation for future operation of EULER services and transfer of EULER results other subject domains will be considered. Contracts within the consortium (and beyond) will ensure the continuation of EULER services after the project comes to an end.

Deliverable: D5.2 Recommendations for the continuation of EULER services (report)