Tracking SFX Error Reports sans effort
Keeping track of SFX error message sans cli.
SFX rolled out a nifty new feature that allows users to click on a 'Report broken link' if they feel they've stumbled onto a bad OpenURL. This feature comes enabled by default and sends an email to ExLibris staff only. If you're so inclined you can add local email addresses to get copies of the error reports as well (Details are in the SFX Advanced Users Guide)
My quam is that I wanted to get that data in a structured (ie database stored) way. Plus I wanted to make this happen without much programming and no special permission or use of sudo.
Ifttt.com is just about the most amazing service there is for creating mash-ups. It does everything via a web interface and requires no programming know how. The classic example of ifttt.com is to setup a service that will automatically download Facebook photos into Dropbox that have been tagged with your name. There is plenty you can with the service but here the interesting thing is that you can make it work with Gmail and Google Drive.
Here's it in a nutshell:
- Sign up for ifttt.com & activate the Gmail & Google Drive 'Channels'
- Modify SFX to send those 'Broken Error Reports' to that Gmail address
- Create a filter to tag the SFX generated email with a specific label. In my case sfx. For example if the message subject line is 'Broken link report from..."
- Create a 'recipe' in ifttt.com to add that message to a Google Drive Spreadsheet
Of course you have many different permutations on the GMail side of things. I have an additional step on the email filter to mark it as read so that I don't get a whole bunch of notifications. You can even cook up burner Google and ifttt accounts if you so choose.
Why do I care about tracking these reports? I saw a post on Jonathan Rochkind's blog about some Danish Librarians tracking these reports and doing some analysis on what is causing the errors. I think this would be a good thing to do as well. I have a feeling that people more or less expect instant Full-Text when they click 'Get It' and are intolerant of navigating a Table of Contents or drilling down a issue list, this I tracking I think might help get some insights on that.