FAQ

  1. What is the PLOS Search API?
  2. What is Solr?
  3. How does the PLOS Search use Solr?
  4. Are there any examples using the PLOS Search API?
  5. Recommended Usage of the PLOS Search API
  6. How do I request a PLOS API key?
  7. How do I use the PLOS API key?
  8. I have questions about using the PLOS Search API. Where can I get answers?

What is the PLOS Search API?

The PLOS Search API gives developers access to rich data that can be flexibly integrated into applications for the web, desktop or mobile devices.  It allows PLOS content to be queried using any of the twenty three terms in the PLOS Search. By opening the PLOS content and data through this API we hope to encourage the development of more tools that will improve the way PLOS users discover and interact with our (and their) content.

What is “Solr”?

Solr is an open-source search platform from the Apache Lucene project. Essentially, Lucene is a Java-based indexing and search tool. Solr provides a friendly way to query Lucene and format the results.

How does the PLOS Search use Solr?

The Query Builder on our Advanced Search Page uses JavaScript to create complex, well-formatted queries from a minimum of user input. The Query Builder code is self-contained; it submits queries to the Solr API only when the Search button is clicked.

The Search Results Page shows faceting on the search bar (number of articles per journal, per subject category, and per article type) and suggests related searches on the right (authors, editors, and institutions). Every time a query is submitted through the search form, additional queries are submitted to Solr. These additional results are displayed as facets and suggestions.

Are there any example using the PLOS Search API?

Sure are!  We have a number of examples here:

And there are more examples using the PLOS Search API.

How do I request a PLOS API key?

See PLOS API Registration.

How do I use the PLOS API key?

Any request made to the PLOS API must include the argument api_key=[your PLOS API key]. That’s it!

I have questions about using the PLOS Search API. Where can I get answers?

If you have any questions or comments about the Article-Level Metrics application, head over to the PLOS API Community page for information on the PLOS API developers group.