Web 2.0 - Continuing impact on Library Catalogues

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Library & Information Show presentation (24/Apr/2008)

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  • 1. Web 2.0 - Continuing impact on Library Catalogues Teaching the Pig to Sing Dave Pattern, Library Systems Manager University of Huddersfield [email_address]
  • 2. preamble
    • Presentation available at:
      • www.slideshare.net/daveyp
    • Please remix and reuse this presentation!
      • creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
  • 3. table of contents
    • Does your OPAC suck?
    • Experiences at Huddersfield
    • Other libraries
    • Open Source and Web services
    • OPAC 2.0
  • 4. does your OPAC suck?
  • 5.
  • 6. 2007 OPAC survey
    • On a scale of 1 to 10 (where 1 is extremely unhappy and 10 is extremely happy), how happy are you with your OPAC?
    • 5.1
  • 7. 2007 OPAC survey
    • One criticism of OPACs is that they rarely have cutting edge features that our users expect from a modern web site.
    • On a scale of 1 to 10, how well do you think your OPAC meets the needs and expectations of your users?
    • 4.5
  • 8. the OPAC as a pig
    • After all, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still very much a pig. (Roy Tennant discussing the OPAC, Library Journal , 2005)
    • Never try to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and it annoys the pig. (attrib. Robert Heinlein, author)
  • 9. pig ugly?
  • 10. kissy, kissy?
  • 11.
  • 12. experiences at Huddersfield
    • Definitely not OPAC 2.0
    • Enhancements to the existing OPAC
      • user suggestions from surveys
      • 2.0 inspired features
      • borrowing good ideas from other web sites
      • new features launched with no/low publicity
      • perpetual beta
    • Required staff buy-in and a willingness to experiment and take risks!
  • 13. spell checker
    • All OPAC keyword searches were monitored over a six month period
    • Approx 23% of searches gave zero results
      • 74 people entered renew as a keyword(!)
    • Users expect suggestions and prompts, not dead end pages that tell you to check your spelling
  • 14. spell checker
  • 15. keyword suggestions (1)
    • Failed keyword searches are cross referenced with answers.com to provide new search suggestions
  • 16. keyword suggestions (2)
  • 17. keyword suggestions (2)
    • Automated suggestions can sometimes raise issues are these suggestions inappropriate?
  • 18. borrowing suggestions
  • 19. personalised suggestions
  • 20. ratings and comments
  • 21. other editions
    • Uses FRBR-like web services provided by OCLC and LibraryThing to locate other editions and related works within local holdings
      • www.oclc.org/research/projects/xisbn/
      • www.librarything.com/api
  • 22. other editions
  • 23. email alerts
  • 24. RSS feeds
  • 25. RSS feeds
  • 26. was it worth doing?
  • 27. was it worth doing?
    • 376 active email alerts
    • 113 active RSS feeds
    • 846 ratings
    • 53 comments
    • personalised suggestions
      • 116 clicks per month (average)
    • combined keyword suggestions
      • 753 clicks per month (average)
  • 28. other libraries
  • 29. Ann Arbor District Library
  • 30.
  • 31. North Carolina State University
  • 32. LibraryThing for Libraries
  • 33. Plymouth State University
  • 34. Topeka and Shawnee County
  • 35. University of Warwick
  • 36. Hennepin County Library
  • 37. lipstick on the pig
    • We need to focus more energy on important, systemic changes rather than cosmetic ones. If your system is more difficult to search and less effective than Amazon.com, then you have work to do.
    • After all, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still very much a pig. (Roy Tennant, Library Journal , 2005)
  • 38. doing it yourself
    • Encourage suggestions from staff
    • Include users in decision making process
    • Encourage play and experimentation
    • Dont be afraid to make mistakes!
    • Look widely for ideas
    • Build crappy prototypes fast
    • Monitor usage
      • if usage is poor, rethink it or get rid of it
  • 39. Open Source OPACs
    • Scriblio
      • Plymouth State University
      • uses WordPress blog software
    • VuFind
      • Falvey Memorial Library, Villanova University
      • uses PHP & MySQL
    • LibraryFind
      • Oregon State University Libraries
      • uses Ruby on Rails
  • 40. Open Source OPACs
    • fac-back-opac
      • Laurentian University Library
      • uses Lucene & Solr
    • Project Blacklight
      • University of Virginia Libraries
      • uses Lucene & Solr
    • Open Source ILS
      • Koha
      • Evergreen
  • 41. web services & APIs
    • Talis Platform
    • LibraryThing
      • thingISBN, thingTitle, thingLang, data feeds
    • OCLC WorldCat Grid Services
    • Amazon Web Services
      • rebranded as Amazon Associates Web Service with new conditions of use
    • Google Book Search API
  • 42. Amazon Associates Web Service
    • Cover scans, reviews, recommendations, sales commission, etc
    • Already used by many libraries
    • However, recent change to conditions of use (19/Mar/2008) may preclude libraries:
      • 5.1.3. You are not permitted to use Amazon Associates Web Service with any Application or for any use that does not have, as its principal purpose, driving traffic to the Amazon Website and driving sales of products and services on the Amazon Website.
      • ( AWS Customer Agreement )