Friday, June 24, 2016

Building Bridges with Logs: Collaborative Conversations about Discovery across Library Departments

The process of implementing a discovery tool can be filled with questions, and even after its implementations, questions about its efficacy and the quality of search results can remain. This article describes an interesting approach used by librarians at Virginia Commonwealth University to evaluate their discovery tool.

According to the article’s abstract:

“This article describes the use of discovery system search logs as a vehicle for encouraging constructive conversations across departments in an academic library. The project focused on bringing together systems and teaching librarians to evaluate the results of anonymized patron searches in order to improve communication across departments, as well as to identify opportunities for improvement to the discovery system itself.”

The authors of the article conclude that, overall, the experience was a positive one for the staff members involved and that it led to some valuable insight into the quality of the search results retrieved by the discovery tool.

Jimmy Ghaphery, Emily Owens, Donna Coghill, Laura Gariepy, Megan Hodge, Thomas McNulty, Erin White. Code4Lib Journal, Issue 32, April 2016,

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Upcoming Joint Reception of the CS/OBS/RIPS/TS Special Interest Sections (AKA the "Alphabet Soup Reception")

Alphabet soup

Calling all CS, OBS, RIPS & TS-SISers - While in Chicago for AALL this year, please stop by and have some fun during the Joint Reception of the CS/OBS/RIPS/TS Special Interest Sections (AKA the "Alphabet Soup Reception").
Joint Reception of the CS/OBS/RIPS/TS Special Interest Sections (AKA the "Alphabet Soup Reception").
WHERE:  Hyatt-Crystal Ballroom B
WHEN:  Saturday, July 16 from 7pm to 9pm
WHAT: Hors D'oeuvres and Drinks with Old and New Colleagues

Special thanks to Innovative Interfaces for their generous support in making this joint reception happen!

See you there!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Preventing Digital Government Information from Falling Through the [Preservation] Cracks

In the analog world the preservation of government information has a clear flow. Content is created by a federal agency. When the need arises for distribution, it is sent to GPO (Government Publishing Office) and when the time comes to archive materials for the permanent record, they go to NARA (National Archives and Records Administration). Today this workflow is still effective for print materials, however much of the content produced by government agencies is no longer produced in an analog form, which means that the flow of content through GPO and NARA doesn’t happen in the same way, and potentially not at all.

To address these concerns, the Digital Preservation of Federal Information Summit was held in San Antonio in early April. This meeting looked at the need for cross-sector collaboration to preserve and provide access to digital government information that may be falling through the cracks without an updated workflow to address the temporariness of web-based content. The end result was a report that outlines the events’ sessions and outcomes including discussions about the need for an environmental scan, development for a coalition of interested institutions representing the public and private sectors, and the need for a common vocabulary.