Considerably more than 11 and 1/2 minutes

Note: Before we get into this whole process, I’d like to state that I was doing this on a Windows/IIS 6 machine with a less-than-ideal version of PHP. This is the source of my problems that I ran into while installing this – but if you are thinking of using Scriblio on a Windows machine with an older version of PHP, this might just help you out!

I went to the IL conference and attended Casey Bisson’s talk on Scriblio, the open-source, social overlay to the OPAC. During that conference session, he installed, configured, imported and themed a working implementation of Scriblio in 11 and 1/2 minutes. This was incredibly cool – and it got me to thinking. I’m pretty comfortable with WordPress and, from what I could tell, Scriblio does a LOT of what III’s (very expensive) Encore product is promising to do. With those two things in mind, I decided to try my hand at getting Scriblio to work for my library.
I started Monday morning – got the base WordPress install and the Scriblio plugins up and running (check the scriblio site at for step-by-step instructions on a lot of this – I’m only detailing fixes for my particular situation). I started to try to import the records from the III catalog at the library, but ran out of time before I had to take off for my split shift. Once I got back to the library at 5pm, I started in on the importing again. After some trial and error, I finally figured out the bib numbers that we use (basically doing searches on the catalog and grabbing some numbers at random from that…) and got some records into the database. When I tried to view them, however, I got a lovely fatal error saying that “array_intersect_key” was not a supported function for my version (5.0.4) of PHP. A bit of digging around showed me that this particular function is only supported on versions of PHP 5.1 and higher. More digging around, however, gave me a workaround function (very first comment on the array_intersect_key function page) that I put at the top of my scriblio.php page in the scriblio plugin folder. Once this was in place, the OPAC began to show up properly.
Sort of. I had an OPAC, but no records, none of my widgets were showing up – it was pretty blank looking. I went to Manage –> Posts and found my posts – unpublished. Even after going to the importer and publishing them, however, they still showed as unpublished. This is when I tried searching for one of them. It came right up! Apparently the unpublished status was a lie!! But – my widgets still didn’t work. I checked my permalink settings and adjusted them and tried it again. Now my widgets mostly worked. I’m still not showing a Tag Cloud on any page, my subject facet goes from list format to cloud format somewhat randomly and availability data doesn’t seem to be showing up, but this is all possibly because I’m using an old version of PHP when a new version is required.
The base of the matter is, however, that even with a non-standard set up (oh, what I would give for a single LAMP server…) I was able to take the instructions, install the files, do some bug-hunting, fix those pesky bugs (mostly) and have a working (and workable) version of Scriblio on my server in about 2 hours. I even have a comment!! Ok. That’s me. But still…
The last part (1 and 1/2 hours) was on the PCC desk with constant interruptions – it would probably have gone faster but for that. I’ll continue working with the new catalog interface and will post here when it’s ready for prime time!

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