More Special Libraries Choose Discovery Interfaces

by Jonathan Jacobsen Sunday, January 11, 2015 12:01 PM

More and more of Andornot's special library clients are choosing discovery interfaces for their library catalogues. With features such as:

  • fast, relevancy-based keyword search results;
  • spelling corrections and did-you-mean suggestions of alternate terms;
  • faceted browsing to easily narrow down results; 
  • tools for saving and sharing searches and records; and
  • integrated access from tablets, phones and other mobile devices;

discovery interfaces provide the search experience that users expect from all web applications these days, and especially library catalogues.

Some of Andornot's recent special library discovery interface projects include:

 

The Horizon Health Network libraries in New Brunswick recently merged four separate Inmagic DB/TextWorks-based library catalogues into a single, web-based Inmagic Genie integrated library system, with Andornot's assistance. Search access for health care staff is available through the Andornot Discovery Interface at http://horizonlibrary.andornot.com 

 

The Alberta Energy Regulator has just upgraded from an early version of the open-source VuFind discovery interface to the very latest version. This new site, at https://aer.andornot.com, features a modern, responsive web interface optimized for both full-size desktop browsers as well as tablets and phones. 

A second interface offers compatibility for older browsers, and the site is available in many languages, offering access to the widest range of users possible. AER manages library operations with Inmagic DB/TextWorks databases.

 

The Thunder Bay and Simcoe Muskoka Health Unit Libraries manage a multi-location library collection with Inmagic Genie, and provide search access with the VuFind discovery interface at https://ophc.andornot.com 

 

The Revs Institute for Automotive Research in Florida has made over 80,000 records from its Inmagic Genie library system available in a discovery interface powered by VuFind and hosted by Andornot at https://revscat.andornot.com

 

The Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired in British Columbia is about to launch an upgraded library catalogue using the Andornot Discovery Interface with custom features for online loan review by vision teachers and their visually-impaired students. PRCVI continues to manage library operations, including circulation and ordering, with a suite of Inmagic DB/TextWorks databases.

 

A large Ontario government ministry managing its library with the Inmagic Genie integrated library system added the Andornot Discovery Interface OPAC, in particular to comply with provincial legislation requiring software to meet accessibility standards and be usable by those with visual and other challenges.

Other Collections

Discovery interfaces are also ideal for other collections, such as archives, digitized historic documents, art galleries, museum artifacts, and more.  Some examples from Andornot's work include:

The United Farmers Historical Society collection of historic publications.

The Ontario Jewish Archives historic records, including a map interface.

The art and book collections of the Burnaby Art Gallery.

It's Your Turn!

We hope these examples will inspire you to review your library catalogue and other information sources, and consider an upgrade to a system with the features users expect in 2015. With several systems to choose from, and ever more features available, this is the year to make the switch. Contact us to discuss the best option for you and your users.

Revs Institute Launches VuFind Catalog of Automotive History

by Jonathan Jacobsen Saturday, September 27, 2014 8:31 AM

The Revs Institute for Automotive Research, Inc. in Naples, Florida is a not-for-profit organization that promotes the understanding and appreciation of automotive history.

Within the Revs Institute, a research library contains over one million discrete items including over 700,000 photographs, 24,000 books, over 200,000 magazines and journals, papers, other written documents, films, and ephemera.

Over 80,000 records from the library are now available in a discovery interface powered by VuFind and hosted by Andornot at https://revscat.andornot.com

Features such as spelling corrections, relevancy-ranked search results, and facets for quick refinement of a search, help users discover information of interest to them from the fascinating collection available in the catalog.

Some of the topics featured in the collection include:

The library uses the Inmagic Genie integrated library system to manage the collection of records. Data is exported from this system nightly, using the Andornot Data Extraction Utility, and uploaded to VuFind.

"Our experience has been that the new VuFind interface adds both visual and intellectual clarity to our OPAC.  Our bib records are cleaner, more organized and more easily searchable by our users. This, of course, means that our research collections are more accessible to library patrons," says Trina Purcell, Special Collections Manager at the Revs Institute.

Contact us to discuss a discovery interface such as VuFind for your collection. 

Version 2.3 of the open-source VuFind discovery interface released

by Jonathan Jacobsen Sunday, August 10, 2014 9:01 PM

Version 2.3 of the open-source VuFind discovery interface has just been released.

This new release adds several new features as well as further improving the stability and flexibility of the software.

Some key additions:

  • Support for retrieving results from additional third-party services: EBSCO Discovery Service, EBSCO Integration Toolkit, Primo Central and LibGuides
  • New themes offering updated support for the Bootstrap framework.
  • Support for ReCAPTCHA security on several key forms.
  • Expanded account functionality, including user-initiated password changes and recovery by email.
  • Expanded book cover display functionality, including the ability to generate dynamic cover images on the fly.

Additionally, several bug fixes, new configuration options and minor improvements have been incorporated.

Andornot continues to recommend VuFind as a low-cost discovery interface option for libraries, as well as our own Andornot Discovery Interface for libraries, archives, museums and art galleries.

Contact us to learn how one of these tools could improve resource discovery for your users.

Tags: VuFind

Thunder Bay and Simcoe Muskoka Health Units Launch Shared Library Catalogue

by Jonathan Jacobsen Monday, May 12, 2014 6:42 PM

In 2012, Andornot worked with the Thunder Bay District Health Unit to upgrade their DB/TextWorks library system from the older Inmagic Library Module kit to the much newer Genie Integrated Library System

This year, the Simcoe Muskoka Health Unit merged their MS Access library catalogue into this shared Genie system, providing both health units with a modern, up-to-date system for managing library holdings, serial subscriptions, orders, and more.

Amongst health care agencies in Canada, it is quite common to share library systems and resources – it makes good economic sense, and helps users and patients to more easily find resources with a single search point.

The public and patients may search the combined library holdings through http://ophc.andornot.com, a discovery interface powered by the VuFind open source software. 

VuFind includes features such as:

  • Spelling suggestions and corrections. 
  • Faceted browsing to allow users to refine searches by subject, date, collection, and other key fields. 
  • A mobile interface. 
  • Google Book covers for records with ISBNs. 
  • Permalinks to records to allow easy bookmarking and social sharing. 
  • User accounts to allow users to save searches and records to personal lists.
  • RSS feeds for user-created searches.

A custom request form developed by Andornot allows users to direct a request to borrow items to the appropriate health unit.

Data is automatically imported into the VuFind system nightly using the Andornot Data Extraction Utility, so there’s no additional work needed by library staff.

The shared Genie system is hosted by Andornot as part of our managed hosting service. Working with two separate groups on a joint system can be tricky, but in this case the cooperation between the library staff in the two health units allowed us to complete the project in a very tight time frame.

"Thanks very much for all of your hard work on this project. It is very much appreciated by us and will be by our clients." Amy Faulkner, Librarian, SMDHU

"You’ve done an exceptional job and we’re all quite appreciative of your hard work and discipline to get this through in such short time frames." Shant Alajajian, Librarian, TBDHU

Contact us to discuss upgrades to your library system and public search interface.

A VuFind Index of Alaska North Slope Gas Resources

by Jonathan Jacobsen Monday, September 23, 2013 11:53 AM

Every day we learn about new and diverse users of the VuFind discovery interface. Just recently, the Alaska Resources Library & Information Services (ARLIS) contacted us for some help with "The Pipe Files", a VuFind-powered index of Alaska North Slope natural gas pipeline work from the past 40 years. This specialized collection is an invaluable resource to researchers and workers in this field.

ARLIS had been using VuFind for some time, but had a list of changes and improvements they needed help with. 

The records available in The Pipe Files VuFind site are cataloged in ARLIS’s main library system and exported to MARC format for import to VuFind. Records include a link to a PDF report stored on the ARLIS document server.

Over a few months, Andornot helped with the following improvements to the site:

  • We adjusted the VuFind-MARC field mapping to suit the particular characteristics of these records and to bring MARC tags into the most appropriate VuFind fields.
  • We rearranged, added, and removed fields from the search results and full record display to best present the information in these records.
  • We configured Apache Tika to extract the full text of PDFs and make it searchable.
  • We configured ImageMagick to generate cover images of the cataloged PDFs, in various sizes, and display them when viewing records.

This sort of fune-tuning resulted in a more polished and usable search interface for this unique collection. Try it out at http://www.arlis.org/vufind/ 

Contact Andornot for help with your VuFind site, or to discuss a search interface to any collections you have.

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