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isbntools 1.0.1

Extract, clean, transform, hyphenate and metadata for ISBNs (International Standard Book Number).

Latest Version: 4.3.11


isbntools provides several useful methods and functions to validate, clean, transform, hyphenate and get metadata for ISBN strings.

Typical usage (as library):

#!/usr/bin/env python
import isbntools

Several scripts are provided to use from the command line:

$ to_isbn10 ISBN13

transforms an ISBN10 number to ISBN13.

$ to_isbn13 ISBN10

transforms an ISBN13 number to ISBN10.

$ isbn_info ISBN

gives you the group identifier of the ISBN.

$ isbn_mask ISBN

masks (hyphenate) an ISBN (split it by identifiers).

$ isbn_meta ISBN

gives you the main metadata associated with the ISBN (uses

$ isbn_validate ISBN

validates ISBN10 and ISBN13.

$ ... | isbn_stdin_validate

to use with posix pipes (e.g. cat FILE_WITH_ISBNs | isbn_stdin_validate).

$ isbn_from_words "words from title and author name"

a fuzzy script that returns the most probable ISBN from a set of words! You could verify the result with isbn_meta.

$ isbntools

writes version and copyright notice.

Many more scripts could be written with the isbntools library, using the methods for extraction, cleaning, validation and standardization of ISBNs.

Just for fun, suppose I want the most spoken about book with certain words in his title. For a quick-and-dirty solution, enter the following code in a file and save it as

#!/usr/bin/env python
import sys
import urllib2
from isbntools import *

query = sys.argv[1].replace(' ', '+')
SEARCH_URL = "" % query

headers = {'User-Agent': 'w3m/0.5.2'}
request = urllib2.Request(SEARCH_URL, headers=headers)
response = urllib2.urlopen(request)
content =

isbns = get_isbnlike(content)

for item in isbns:
    ib = get_canonical_isbn(item, output='ISBN-13')
    if ib: break

print("The ISBN of the most `spoken-about` book with this title is %s" % ib)
print("... and the book is:")

Then in a command line (in the same directory):

$ python 'noise'

In my case I get:

The ISBN of the most `spoken-about` book with this title is 9780143105985

... and the book is:

{'Publisher': u'Penguin Books', 'Language': u'eng', 'Title': u'White noise',
'Year': u'2009', 'ISBN-13': '9780143105985', 'Authors': u'Don DeLillo ;
introduction by Richard Powers.'}

Have fun!


From the command line enter:

$ pip install isbntools


$ easy_install isbntools


$ pip install isbntools-1.0.1.tar.gz

(first you have to download the file and in some cases you have to preced the command by sudo!)

Known Issues

  1. The meta method and the isbn_meta script sometimes give a wrong result (this is due to errors on the service), in alternative you could use the Google Books service (e.g. isbn_meta 9780143105985 goob)
File Type Py Version Uploaded on Size
isbntools-1.0.1.tar.gz (md5) Source 2014-03-05 17KB