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Innovative Users Group (IUG) meeting – Chicago 2012

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

Arabella Holzapfel, Shawn O’Neil & I (Barbara Merz) were at the 20th IUG in Chicago – beautiful city – love the lake, parks etc. etc. The meeting was quite interesting too. We’ll give brief highlights of the sessions we found to be useful, and we’ll download the associated materials, which in most cases will include PowerPoint presentations, to the folder \orgs\LIS\LISstaff\ILS III Millennium User Materials\IUG 2012 materials for your enjoyment & edification.  An observation I (Shawn) had after attending these workshops is that Middlebury College is ahead of the curve to many other Institutes in technology. Our network infrastructure seems to be superior to others.

  • “Running a User Experience Group in the absence of a Sys Admin.” (BM). Bentley University. Without a Sys Librarian, III duties fall to a group of 7: 2 tech support, 2 reference, 1 circ, 1 tech services, 1 special collections. 8 staff can access the III helpdesk. Very interesting model.
  • “Sierra Roadmap & Update” (BM) III’s pitch for the wonderful new world of Sierra. Sierra will have 100% of Millennium functionality.
  • “Learning Library-Specific Context to Mobilize Library Catalog” (BM) At University of Miami concern for the usefulness of the OPAC on mobile devices, even though searching starts with Summon, led to the adoption of Bob Duncan’s mobile stylesheet, with modifications to take care of their OPAC customizations. Definitely worth follow-up.
  • Load Profile Forum (BM & AH). Useful review of resources available to load profilers. Wiki available but underutilized! Time for Middlebury to review RDA implications.
  • “Automation: Boost your Productivity a Thousand Times.” (BM) Good tech geek presentation. Use of Expect in various flavors, AutoIt plus Java to automate repetitive tasks e.g creating review lists from record numbers, barcodes etc.
  • Systems Managers Forum (BM) Mostly controlled by III staff member talking about transition to Sierra + how things would work in Sierra. Take away message – III’s efforts will be largely directed to Sierra development from now on, even though they insist that Millennium development is continuing. My conclusion – Middlebury should consider the future of our ILS with all due haste!
  • “When your item types just don’t work anymore” (AH) was a discussion about how and why a library totally revamped their item types (going from around 10 to 101) to help them better identify various formats of material, which in turn aided greatly in tracking statistics of all kinds for all reasons. Most of it is useful ‘inside baseball’ stuff, but one intriguing thing that came out is that they (a public library in Oklahoma) loan out bike locks.
  • Two useful sessions focused on using Millennium (and, in one session, additional assistance from an outside vendor) to aid in weeding (AH). (One library had 100,000 volumes in off-site storage to weed.) Interesting factoids: Jefferson County Public Libraries in Colorado (my home state!), with 10 branches, serving 548,000, orders 100-120 copies of bestsellers. They run their weeding list weekly and withdraw about 120,000 items each year.
  • Four useful sessions dealt with various aspects of batch record loads, particularly those for e-books. (AH) One session was presented by staff from San Jose State University, where they provide e-books from 17 different providers/platforms, and have patron-driven acquisitions programs from three different vendors. They use a combination of tools, including Excel and WinBatch scripts, to de-dupe and perform other necessary functions on batch records.
  • “Using circulation data to validate an approval plan” (AH) described one library’s journey towards refining their approval plan profile (for print books) to match or surpass the circulation rates for firm orders.
  • “Getting the most out of Print Templates” (SO) –creating and using print templates for everything from spine labels to hold slips.
  • “Centralized Weeding: using create list and icodes to streamline the weeding process” and “Millennium Makeover magic: weeding in an INN-Reach consortium”- (SO) The 1st presentation dealt with both public and Academic libraries and the later was an academic library that was involved with  INN-Reach. In both, faculty  was given a say over the weeding. There seems to be no standard method for choosing what is to be weeded.
  • “Creating lists for Beginners – Why created the wheel again” (SO)  In other words, use others’ lists (with permission).
  • “Confounding by Copyright?” (SO) It seems guidelines change all the time and you can “buy protection” for copyright privileges.

IUG Conference – SF

Categories: Midd Blogosphere

The IUG (Innovative Users Group) conference was a great experience. Keynote speaker, futurist, and ex-IBM engineer Thomas Frey from the DaVinci Institute kicked it off with a fascinating peek into the future of libraries and how they are entering a period of rebirth. With information exploding everywhere, libraries are becoming the “crown jewels” of their communities. He ignited enthusiasm by stating libraries may offer a mix of media and book havens with a real-time info wall, virtual world areas, rooms to create videos, a place for gaming and music use, blogger studios, etc. The conference offered a complete variety of classes.  I attended Circ and media-related classes and forums (Mill Time Savers, Circ Forum, Mill Circ Update on Products  & others).  I spoke with conference attendees  about specific work procedures. It was fun to be a part of the info exchange in these forums by informing others of why, how, and what we are doing (i.e. condensing Music Library into Davis Main) and also to listen to them.  It was interesting to see how other schools handle their media, which often depends upon academic programs. Some schools offer gaming courses so they loan iPads (generally revving up, Kindles remaining strong).  If you want to check out a variety of conference programs, go to: http://www.innovativeusers.org/index.
I placed a few Power Point presentations in the folder on the O drive, so please add any that might be useful to your area O:\orgs\LIS\LISstaff\ILS III Millennium User Materials\IUG2011 materials

There were brief presentations each day by Innovative and SkyRiver staff highlighting tips and support info. They also had a poster area which showcased new ideas.
The Innovative Interfaces Info Center was available during the entire 3 days, and the staff told me the new product, “Sierra” is coming very soon (no date).  What I was told about Sierra is that it is a service-oriented architecture, acts as an integrated resource management and work flow with one piece of software (no modules), and users have a choice of a cloud or local-based deployment. Millennium will continue to be supported of course, with a new release underway.
If you would like to contact the Innovative Interfaces service rep Deborah Devine, she welcomes communication:
Internet: http://www.iii.com
Email:
ddevine@iii.com

Follow Innovative on Twitter http://twitter.com/iii_Innovative