Happy New Year!
In This Issue
Andornot's Latest Projects:
Tips, Tricks and Ideas:
Andornot's Latest Projects
We continue to help libraries, archives and museums upgrade their collection management systems and processes, and to showcase their collections in modern search engines. We present these as examples to inspire you, and resources you may find useful.
Vancouver Coastal Health Library Migrates to Genie and AnDI
The Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) Library is a long-time Inmagic DB/TextWorks site, using the software to manage collections in Richmond, Vancouver and North Vancouver. Andornot has helped library staff in many ways, including hosting a web-based search interface to the catalogue for 15 years.
IT requirements and procedures at the health authority have, over the years, made it challenging for library staff to keep their software up to date. After considering several options, Librarian Shannon Long opted to merge the VCH collections into an instance of the Inmagic Genie library system that is shared with the BC Cancer Agency and BC Children's and Women's Hospital libraries. This cost-effective approach allows the collection to remain in a familiar Inmagic environment, with the whole system hosted, maintained and upgraded by the Provincial Health Services Agency.
While the collections of all three of these health agencies is managed in the shared Genie system, each has their own public-facing search system. The new interface for the VCH library collection is available at https://librarycatalogue.vch.ca and is built upon the Andornot Discovery Interface, a modern search engine widely used by Andornot clients.
Key features of the site include:
You can read more about this project in this blog post.
Refresh for the Arnprior & McNab/Braeside Archives website and collections search
The Arnprior & McNab/Braeside Archives (AMBA) is a small community archive outside Ottawa run by a part time archivist, a management board and volunteers. In 2015 they were faced with several challenges. Their website was very dated looking and over the years the template had not been consistently applied, resulting in different menu links and layouts from page to page. Changes with their software vendor meant their interface to search the collections was being hosted in England, and they had no statistics on usage. It was definitely time for a refresh! AMBA applied for and received a grant from the Documentary Heritage Communities Program (DHCP) funded by Library and Archives Canada (LAC). Andornot worked with AMBA to scope out and provide a detailed proposal that was submitted with their application.
This was an extensive project that vastly improved the functionality offered to both AMBA on the administrative side, and to the public and researchers through the web.
You can read more about this project in this blog post.
ARLIS Launches Susitna Doc Finder VuFind Catalog
Over the past couple of years, Andornot has helped the Alaska Resources Library & Information Services (ARLIS) launch, then upgrade, a VuFind-powered catalog of Alaska North Slope natural gas pipeline work from the past 40 years.
A second VuFind catalog has recently been added to the ARLIS site: the Susitna Doc Finder
This is a comprehensive catalog of documents that have resulted from every phase of the historic 1980s Susitna Hydroelectric Project (SuHydro Project), as well as those documents continually being produced since 2010 under the current Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Project (SuWa Project).
More details about how ARLIS manages data for this project and some of the custom features Andornot added to VuFind are available in this blog post.
Tips, Tricks and Ideas
Explore Heritage Resources with a Map Interface
Maps are a wonderful way to explore a collection that has a geographic aspect. Zooming, panning and clicking pins are a fun and interactive means for users to discover resources, as well as to see the spatial relationship between them.
Over the years, Andornot has added geographic features to many projects, ranging from very simple links to Google maps showing a single point, to dynamic applications that plot multiple records on a single map, scaling the map up and down as new resources are added to the underlying database.
Check out some live examples of map interfaces in this blog post.
The Many Uses of Shortening (URL shortening that is)
Shortening is a wonderful thing: in baking it makes pies and cakes light and fluffy, and on the web, it makes long, unwieldy URLs short and manageable. This blog post is all about the second usage, but we can think about the first as we read it.
You might wonder why you should care about short URLs. After all, isn't a long one like
a perfectly good URL?
Sure, your web browser will have no trouble with that and will access the web site and cause it to run the search specified by all those parameters.
But what if you want to share this URL via email or on Twitter, or post it to a blog or Facebook. That URL is 144 characters, so it's not going to fit in a tweet, and services such as Facebook may strip away parts of the URL rendering it non-functional.
The solution is to use a URL shortening service to shrink a long URL down to something like:
These fit handily in Tweets, blog posts, emails and are not edited by Facebook when posting there.
Some of the most common URL shortening services are:
When you next need to send or post a long URL, especially one with lots of parameters and query strings, give one of these a try.
If you use Inmagic WebPublisher for searching databases, please note that the long URLs it produces contain temporary session parameters that will expire after a period of time, so aren't suitable for re-use, in short or long form. However, Andornot has tips and tricks to help with this too - just contact us for details.
Don't Miss the Deadline for the Andornot Professional Development Grant
Andornot strongly believes in the value of attending conferences to foster professional development. We attend events across Canada and the United States all year long to learn about new trends and technologies, meet with clients, and share our expertise with like-minded folks.
We are thus pleased to provide an annual grant to help you attend a conference or event that Andornot also exhibits at or attends, as part of your ongoing professional development activities.
The deadline is January 31st, so be sure to read the details and apply online here.
And don't forget also that Library and Archives Canada's Documentary Heritage Communities Program grant application deadline is January 27th. More details are available on our Grants and Funding webpage, along with other funding opportunities.
Meet with Andornot at Upcoming Conferences and Events
We have a full line up of conferences and events planned for 2017, all to meet clients like you in person and chat about projects you have in mind and solutions we can offer you. A full list is on our website, but here are some coming up in the first half of the year. We hope to see you there! If you can't attend the conference, but we're in your city, please do let us know if we can meet you outside the conference while we're there.
American Historical Association Annual Meeting
Canadian Health Libraries Association (CHLA) Conference
Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) Conference
Association of Canadian Archivists Conference
Tweets: Round-up of Library, Archive and Museum News
As we come across news, projects, resources and other items we think might be of interest to our clients, we tend to post a quick tweet on our Twitter page, rather than a longer blog post. We've included a small selection of recent tweets in this newsletter, but encourage you to follow us on Twitter.
Andornot Consulting Inc.