In order to provide a consistently satisfactory user experience, in which users of the Library’s research databases(and the Summon discovery service) don’t face dead-end blank screens when trying to reach articles and books, the Library will deactivate Index-enhanced Direct Linking (IEDL) in our link resolver (360Link).
What does this mean exactly? Index-enhanced Direct Linking (IEDL) is available for certain article databases that cooperate with the company which provides 360Link. IEDL takes the user from a results list to an article or book without any kind of intermediate screen. From certain databases (and from Summon), IEDL was supposed to streamline the user experience by eliminating clicks between the search results and the items themselves. This has not turned out to be the case.
What will I see?
When you click on a link for full-text, you will now see the familiar intermediate screen for all articles and books. This “Get it @ Midd” screen is 360Link, our link resolver. You will then click a button to access the item, as you always have in cases where you saw this screen. The intermediate screen will be similar to the following example:
Why did we make the change?
For several reasons having to do with commercial relationships among various database vendors, IEDL used to function better than it currently does. Now, the inconvenience of the dead-end screens occurs much more often. The dead ends (blank screens) provide little or no useful information as to how the user can access materials the Library actually has. Always displaying the intermediate “Get it @ Midd” screen will allow users to see our accurate holdings and to obtain access consistently.
The ILLiad web pages will be down from 9:00 am today while we upgrade the ILLiad software to v8.7. The ILL web site will be inaccessible for only a short time, assuming all goes well with the update. If anyone has problems after 2:00 pm please contact Rachel Manning at x5498 or firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Library Systems will be performing necessary security upgrades to the EZproxy server on Sunday morning during regularly scheduled downtime (6 am to 10 am) on 4/12/2015.
There will be no off-campus access for the Library’s subscription databases, e-books, and e-journals during this time. There will be intermittent access interruptions on campus, too. I expect the whole process to last no more than one hour. I apologize for any inconvenience.
The first half is this incredibly dark rant about how the Internet is alienating and inhuman, how it’s turning us all into lonely monsters.”
“But in the second half, I’ll turn it around and present my vision of an alternative future. I’ll get the audience fired up like a proper American motivational speaker. After the big finish, we’ll burst out of the conference hall into the streets of Düsseldorf, hoist the black flag, and change the world.”
As I was preparing this talk, however, I found it getting longer and longer. In the interests of time, I’m afraid I’m only going to be able to present the first half…
Summon, our library resource discovery layer, now has a new and improved interface.
In the 6/3/2014 update, the vendor (ProQuest / Serials Solutions) made several bug fixes that we had been eagerly awaiting. Even more importantly, the changes offer better layout, better integration with our library research guides (LibGuides), and context-sensitive librarian information on the results pages, among other things.
You can access Summon from the same places you always could.
from the “Library Quick Search” on the library main page: go/lib
At Middlebury, we’ve been using Summon as the discovery layer for our library collections for the last several years. The recent article from the Chronicle of Higher Education about discovery tools is an interesting read:
Many professors and students gravitate to Google as a gateway to research. Libraries want to offer them a comparably simple and broad experience for searching academic content. As a result, a major change is under way in how libraries organize information. Instead of bewildering users with a bevy of specialized databases—books here, articles there—many libraries are bulldozing their digital silos. They now offer one-stop search boxes that comb entire collections, Google style.
That’s the ideal, anyway. The reality is turning out to be messier.