Preparing for the call
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DSpace contains a number of crosswalk plugins to convert metadata from one metadata schema into another. Some of these are used by several of DSpace's internal features, such as the Packager plugins and OAH-PMH server. It is possible to add custom crosswalks to DSpace in the form of these crosswalk plugins.
The OAI harvesting functionality exposes DSpace metadata to external sources. By default this metadata is provided in the Dublin Core Metadata schema. It is possible for users to configure the OAI service to make use of any of the crosswalk plugins to provide a fit with the metadata schemas used by the service which is harvesting DSpace.
Packager plugins are a second category of modules which can call upon crosswalk plugins to convert metadata from the metadata schema used in DSpace to the desired package format to export the metadata to. In the other direction, crosswalks can also be used by these packager plugins' package ingesters to translate package contents back to the DSpace metadata structure. During the call it appeared none of the attendees were making customizations to crosswalks used by package disseminators. There was one institution which used custom crosswalks for ingesting metadata in DSpace.
Some external integrations with Dspace also require crosswalks to translate metadata from one schema to another. One example of such platform is the Elements platform by Symplectic, which can be integrated with DSpace through the Repository Tools Package. During the meeting there was noticed Symplectic adds many crosswalks to DSpace.
Internal vs. external crosswalks
Crosswalks can also exist outside of the DSpace crosswalk plugins. In this kind of scenario metadata is exported out of DSpace, for example in a CSV format, and later externally manipulated. One technology which was used for this by an attendee was the marc4j java library. After manipulation the metadata can then be reimported, or transmitted to the desired recipient.