About JAbbr

What is JAbbr?

JAbbr is an online tool that helps decipher journal title abbreviations. (It also works for conference proceedings and other serial publications.)

How does JAbbr work?

Given an abbreviation, JAbbr tests it against a list of serial titles extracted from the library catalog, and uses fuzzy matching to return a list of possible matches.

Where can I test my Library's version of Jabbr?


Why can't I find a title for my abbreviation?

JAbbr currently uses data extracted from the indivdual Library catalogs. If the catalog doesn't have a particular journal, then JAbbr won't find it.

Who created JAbbr?

JAbbr was developed by Keith Jenkins, a librarian at Cornell University's Mann Library. Many thanks go to other Cornell librarians and staff who have tested JAbbr, provided feedback, and suggested improvements.

JAbbr was adapted for the State University Libraries of Florida by Joshua Greben at FCLA

I'm a Web developer... is there a Web Service I can use?

Yes, JAbbr is also available as an experimental Web service that returns a JSON object.

For example, this request:


returns the following JSON object:

  "q": "javma",
  "max": 20,
  "deep": 0,
  "count": 4,
  "matches": [
      "altTitle": "javma",
      "exact": 1,
      "title": "Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association"
      "altTitle": "journal of the american holistic veterinary medical association",
      "title": "Journal"
      "title": "Journal of Anhui Vocational College of Metallurgy and Technology"
      "title": "Journal of the Arab Veterinary Medical Association"

The service accepts the following querystring parameters:

parameter required? description
q yes the abbreviation to be deciphered
max no maximum number of results (defaults to 20)
deep no set to 1 for a deep search (defaults to 0)

In the JSON object that is returned, the 'q', 'deep', and 'max' members simply echo the parameters that were requested. The 'count' member reports how many matching titles were found. The value of 'count' might be greater than 'max', but no more than 'max' matches will be returned.

The value of the 'matches' member is an array of objects. Every object in this array will contain a 'title', and some objects may also include 'altTitle' or 'exact' members. The 'altTitle' is only included when it was used to make the match, and the presence of the 'exact' member indicates an exact match against known abbreviations.

Feel free to experiment with this Web service -- if you have questions or feedback, or just find it useful, please contact Keith Jenkins. If you expect to make heavy use of the web service, consider hosting your own version of JAbbr -- see the next question.

Is the source code available?

Yes. JAbbr is currently available for use under the MIT License. Visit the original JAbbr website.