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KU Libraries's Scott Hanrath helps create blog-to-book tool Anthologize

Friday, August 6, 2010

Twelve people had one week to design and develop a practical open-source tool that met a real need in the digital humanities. The result is Anthologize, which streamlines and automates the process of transforming a blog into a variety of digital and printed book formats.

Scott Hanrath, web services manager at KU Libraries, helped create Anthologize at One Week One Tool, a summer institute funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Office of Digital Humanities and held at the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University.

Anthologize enables anyone using WordPress to edit and publish their work in several formats for print and electronic distribution, including PDF, ePub, and TEI, an open XML format for storage and exchange. E-books created by Anthologize can be viewed on a computer or portable devices such as the Kindle, Nook or iPad. The software tool is free to use and available as an alpha release at on the Anthologize site
Hanrath applied for one of the 12 spots after hearing about the opportunity during the Digital Summit that KU Libraries helped host last spring. He was accepted, and worked with the rest of the team from July 25 through 31. “It was a fantastic and energizing learning-by-doing experience,” Hanrath said.
Part of the process was determining what tool they would actually develop from among all the possibilities. “Ultimately we wanted something that people would use, and something that different people might use in different ways,” Hanrath said. “A ‘blog-to-book’ tool seemed to have a ready audience and lots of applications.” The group also wanted to create a sustainable open source tool that would attract and encourage developers, Hanrath explained.
“The high point of the week was seeing Anthologize become a ‘real’ thing around midweek,” Hanrath said. “The various pieces from our user experience, development, and outreach teams started coming together, and the teams seamlessly reconfigured themselves to tackle new problems as they emerged.”

For more information contact Rebecca Smith at (785) 864-1761, or via email at

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