Springer announces API Challenge winners

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Springer has announced the winners of its API Challenge 2.0. The challenge asked programmers to create new and original non-commercial applications that use Springer’s metadata and content APIs. The goal was to offer users new and novel ways of finding, visualising and/or manipulating relevant data drawn from Springer’s large and growing content database. 

First place was awarded to Kleenk (kleenk.com). While the name was new, this entry—previously known as KontentLinks—won second prize in the first API challenge. Kleenk allows researchers to create meaningful connections between various types of content (i.e. articles, book chapters, images, etc.), share, rate and comment on them, and finally explore the emerging content webs. This year’s submission was represented by an experimental search feature included in the Kleenk platform that lets users provide search terms, which Kleenk then uses to query the Springer database, both general and open access, looking for the most important connections.

In 2012, second place went to Visual Navigator ( from the Institute of Computer Science, Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg, Germany. Visual Navigator is a tool that allows Springer subscribers to search and explore images through visual similarity in real-time. Users search and explore images through visual similarities.

The third-place prize went to Opacmo (www.opacmo.org) of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. Opacmo stands for “Open Access Mortar,” a mash-up of biological and biomedical terms linked to publications. For each query that is carried out through Opacmo and its interactive web-site, a query is also being sent to the Springer Metadata API. The results are then integrated in a comparative-analysis view that visualises differences/similarities to the search results of Opacmo.

Metadata for more than 4.8 million documents from Springer journals, books and protocols was made available to the participants. Also available were full-text content, metadata and images for approximately 80,000 open-access articles from BioMed Central and SpringerOpen journals. The awarded applications are now freely available to end users for one year.