VuFind 2.0 Released

by Jonathan Jacobsen Tuesday, June 25, 2013 3:47 PM

Version 2.0 of VuFind, the popular open-source discovery interface, was released June 21, 2013. Version 2 follows version 1.4 released in January of this year and is an almost completely new version of the application.

For end-users, there are few changes - the system continues to deliver the features expected of a discovery interface: relevant results, facets for refinement, spelling suggestions and related titles, and easy saving and sharing of records.

For system administrators and developers like Andornot, version 2.0 brings many changes that make installing, configuring and customizing VuFind much easier. This page http://vufind.org/wiki/vufind2:why_vufind_2.0 provides a good summary of the architecture changes and rationale for it. We're looking forward to working with this new version.

If you are running VuFind, there is no immediate need to upgrade. However, as additional features are added to the version 2.0 codebase, and as the technologies in the version 1.x line grow older, you will at some point want to move to version 2.0 or a follow-on release, and we'd be happy to help you do that.

View a demonstration of VuFind.

Contact us to learn more about the VuFind discovery interface and how it can give your users a search engine with all the features they have come to expect.


 

Tags: VuFind

New Website for the Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired

by Jonathan Jacobsen Wednesday, June 19, 2013 8:11 AM

The Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (PRCVI) has launched a newly designed and built website. The site features up-to-date resources for teachers of the visually impaired, parents, and school district personnel working with blind and visually impaired students in British Columbia.

PRCVI WebsiteThe previous version of the website was in use for about three years, and was mostly generated from a DB/TextWorks database using canned queries for content for individual pages. While this unique approach allowed staff to use a program they are quite familiar with to update content, it didn't provide the level of control over page content that was needed.

The new version is a traditional website - several dozen pages in a three-level hierarchy. The site is a responsive HTML5 design built from the Bootstrap framework and designed to work equally well on both desktop browsers and mobile devices. It has also been tested to meet Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, which is especially important because PRCVI serves visually impaired users.

PRCVI continues to offer a library catalogue and database of vision teachers and other contacts through Inmagic DB/TextWorks and WebPublisher PRO and interfaces built from the Andornot Starter Kit, all tightly integrated into the new site.

"We are delighted with the newly upgraded and enhanced PRCVI website - Andornot have done a spectacular job, they were able to accommodate all our requirements and offer great suggestions at the planning stage.  We were so pleased with the initial design presented we needed to make very few changes. Now the website is so much easier to use, more visually appealing and inviting to our clients. Great job." Says Chris Marshall, Manager, Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (PRCVI) and Accessible Resource Centre-British Columbia (ARC-BC).

Contact us to discuss upgrades to your website to meet current standards for accessibility and mobile access.

Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Updates Library Catalogue with Andornot Discovery Interface

by Jonathan Jacobsen Friday, June 14, 2013 7:58 AM

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has updated its library catalogue with the Andornot Discovery Interface (AnDI).

As with another recent AnDI project for the Canadian Conservation Institute, the CRTC library needed to ensure its library catalogue interface met current standards for web accessibility, as well as incorporating the Government of Canada’s common look and feel for websites, and offering an interface in both official languages. The library catalogue had been available online for some time, but not in a format that met accessibility requirements. Without a change, the catalogue would have to be removed from the internet.

The Andornot Discovery Interface was the perfect choice for meeting these requirements with a new search interface.  It offers:

  • Fast, relevancy-based keyword search results;
  • spelling corrections and did-you-mean suggestions of alternate terms;
  • faceted browsing to easily narrow down results;
  • hit-highlighting showing search words in context;
  • full-text indexing and searching; and
  • tools for saving and sharing records.

The CRTC library continues to use DB/TextWorks to manage the collection. Data is automatically exported with the Andornot Data Extraction Utility for indexing in AnDI.

You can try out the new catalogue at http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/Library/

Contact us to see how we can upgrade your search interface to meet current standards for usability and accessibility.

 

How to Use the DB/TextWorks Runtime Version for Read-Only Searching

by Kathy Bryce Monday, June 10, 2013 6:19 PM

The DB/TextWorks runtime version is a free, search-only version of the non-SQL DB/TextWorks.  It’s a useful tool for providing access to a textbase just for searching.   Originally it was a popular way of distributing a textbase on a CD, but now it's often used in these scenarios:

  • Archives or library reading rooms with no internet or network access.
  • Very small law firm libraries without an intranet for staff searching.
  • Prisons or correctional institutes where the inmates have no internet or network access or there is concern about tampering with the data.
  • One time anniversary projects to distribute searchable copies of a textbase.

Although there are multiple ways of publishing DB/TextWorks textbases on the web or intranet, we still regularly get requests for assistance with setting up runtime instances, so we’ve written up the following guidelines and best practices.

The first step in any runtime implementation is to read the DB/TextWorks online Help.  Search for “runtime” and read the licensing section, how to install the software and what to give end users or transfer to the PC where it is to be installed.  You will need to have downloaded the runtime installation kit from the Inmagic extranet.  Depending on the version this was included in the DB/TextWorks download zip file and appears as a  \runtime folder, or more recently it is available as a separate download.  Login using the credentials from your most recent emailed download notification from Inmagic to download the install kit.  

Important considerations:

  • Only one user can access the runtime version at a time.
  • Exclusive access to a textbase is required, so you cannot install the runtime on a network server and set it to search your live textbases.
  • The textbases are read-only once installed on the target PC.  This means you will not be able to adjust any query screens or reports on the target PC.
  • If you have links to images or documents in your textbases, the runtime version requires linked files to be in the same folder as the textbase.

Over the years our preferred procedure for creating and updating runtime versions has evolved to the following:

  • Create a folder called DB/Text_Runtime and unzip the install kit files.
  • Create a copy of the textbase that you wish to make available through the runtime version in this folder. (Name it to distinguish from the original such as CatalogRuntime.) (Menu screen > Manage Textbases > Copy Textbase).
  • If desired, open this new textbase and search for and Batch Delete any records that should not be included. (Records > Batch Delete)
  • Open this new textbase and set defaults for  query screens and forms appropriate for runtime users (Maintain > Change Textbase Defaults)
  • Optionally, remove extraneous forms to avoid confusion – most runtime users will only need a couple of reports (Maintain > Manage Textbase Elements)
  • Edit these chosen query screens and forms to add more search tips or information suitable for new or infrequent users. (Search > Design Query Screen or Display > Design Form)
  • Copy any linked image or document files that you want to make accessible into this same folder.BatchModify
  • Batch modify the fields for image or document links to remove pathing information.  (Records> Batch Modify. Choose Substitute Text and Affects Matching e.g. if a typical entry is N:\Archives\Images\2012-01-67.jpg  enter the path to the last \ in the Old Entry box (N:\Archives\Images\) and leave the New Entry box blank. This will leave just 2012-01-67.jpg  in the field.)  You may need to run several separate batch modifications if you have linked files in many different folders.
  • Create an introductory menu screen in the same folder setting the preferred query screen and forms. (Menu Screens > Design > Create > Box Properties > Initial Elements).  You may wish this to contain contact and additional explanatory information.

To install the runtime version:

  • Copy over the entire DB/Text_Runtime folder as created above (make sure to close the runtime textbase first).
  • Run setup.exe and follow the install instructions.
  • When DB/TextWorks first opens, Select the appropriate menu screen ( Menu Screens > Select).
  • Customize the toolbars to remove extraneous or confusing icons, i.e. the Sort Report and Select Form icons if you have specified only one report of each type. (Tools > Customize Toolbar).
  • Any adjustments to query screens or report forms or the data itself will need to be made on the original version and the files copied over again.  Always be sure the textbase is not open when copying the files.

To update the runtime databases:

  • Export and Import records from your working textbase rather than using Copy Textbase again unless you are OK with repeating all the steps above each time. 
  • Use Copy Textbase to create a new copy of the Runtime version of the textbase instead.import
  • In your working textbase, search for all new or modified records (or just the subset you wish to make available through the runtime version).
  • Export in Inmagic Tagged Format (File > Export. Inmagic Tagged | Current Record Set | All fields)
  • Switch to your Runtime textbase and Import.  (File > Import.  Inmagic Tagged | Add/Replace = Check for Matching Records & Replace Fields matching on your textbase unique record identifier field.  (You should always have an Automatic Number type field such as Record ID.) Accept New Record if Match Not Found)  The screenshot is from version 14 which added the ability to set up Import Profiles so you can retain these settings for the next update.
  • If you have image or document links you will need to batch modify these for any new or updated records and ensure that you copy over these files into the runtime folder too. 
  • Delete the original runtime textbase and rename the new version to the original name (Manage Textbases > Delete and then Rename). This ensures your menu screen still links correctly.

Setting up and maintaining the runtime version can be quite time consuming!  If you do have an intranet or web site, please contact us to discuss the various options for publishing your textbases.  We can also host authenticated sites if you do not have your own intranet or webserver. 

An important update from Inmagic

by Kathy Bryce Monday, June 10, 2013 1:44 PM

SydneyPLUS, the leading global developer of knowledge management solutions, announced yesterday that SydneyPLUS and all of its affiliated companies – Inmagic Canada Software, Cuadra Associates, Questor Systems, LookUp Precision, LawPort, and Incite Software Solutions – will now operate as one company under the new name Lucidea Corporation. All products will retain their brand names, and will continue to be enhanced and supported by Lucidea.

"The creation of a consolidated corporate structure allows Lucidea to more effectively leverage combined resources to support strategic initiatives in product development, sales and marketing, and implementation services. Innovation and growth in these areas will enable Lucidea to more quickly deliver exciting products and enhancements to its rapidly expanding global customer base. "

If you have questions about the specifics of the change,  Inmagic have put together some resources to address them. You can find the customer FAQ, the press release announcing Lucidea, a new corporate overview, and consolidated product information, at the new corporate website, www.lucidea.com.

For our Inmagic customers, we will be still be your reseller and it will be “business as usual” with the same contacts, emails and phone numbers.  Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about this announcement.

Tags: Inmagic

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