Thursday, August 26, 2004

Bookmarklet for the National Library of Singapore (failed)

How sad. I recently happened upon the concept of the bookmarklet, and was especially intrigued by this particular application of them, called LibraryLookUp: a one-click hop from investigating a book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or any website that contains the ISBN of a book in the URL, to the book's lookup page on your local library website. So, if you chance upon a book on Amazon, say, that you find interesting, you can look it up in your local library to see if it's available - with just one click. Stupendous!

The service supports any library website in which you can access the book's lookup page via a URL that also contains the ISBN of the book. So, naturally, I wanted to apply this to my local library system, the National Library of Singapore (catalogue), which uses the CARLweb system. Unfortunately, poking around for hours (well, all right, minutes), I couldn't find any magic way of accessing a book's lookup page via a URL that contains the ISBN of a book - even by looking up a book via ISBN. So it appears that CARLweb can't be supported by this application, which is a tragedy indeed. All I can do is to look the book up on something like the National University of Singapore's library catalogue, which doesn't do me much good, since they require membership for entry (something that I have a MAJOR ISSUE with). Sigh.

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