Articles posted by Andrew Welch

Interlibrary Loan unavailable from 10 am to noon, 9/3/14

September 3, 2014

Due to a software upgrade, Interlibrary Loan services will be temporarily unavailable between 10:00 am and noon on Sept. 3, 2014. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Access to Library and Interlibrary Loan accounts temporarily unavailable

December 16, 2013

Update, 12/17/2013 – This issue has been resolved.

The ability to log in to your Library Account or Interlibrary Loan with your Drake ID and password is temporarily unavailable. We are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible, and we appreciate your patience.

Free access to articles by 2013 Nobel Prize Laureates

November 22, 2013

SuperSearch Changes Coming

October 9, 2013

EBSCO will be making a number of interface enhancements to SuperSearch and EBSCOhost databases at the end of October (on or after Oct. 29th), and they’ve given us a preview. Many of these changes were driven by users asking EBSCO to simplify the results display and make more results available on the first screen.

Click on the image to the right for a larger view of the following:
SuperSearch & EBSCOhost enhancements

  1. “Add a Row” has been replaced with +/-.
  2. Number of records returned by the search appears directly above the Results List; page navigation relocated to the bottom below the results.
  3. The “Preview” and “Folder” icons move to align together to the right side of the column, maintaining a consistent location. Publication type icons now appear below the title.
  4. Expand/Collapse controls move to the outside corners (includes right column).
  5. Catalog and institutional repository links now appear in the Full Text link area.
  6. Publisher names will be displayed, in lieu of Source.

In addition, and not necessarily shown in the preview image:

  • Updated styling, including the font, allows for additional display space.
  • Selecting a Limiter, such as Full Text, will immediately update the Results List without the need to click an “Update” button.
  • Preview hover is now centered inside the screen.
  • Addition of access to relevant eBook pages from the Search Results list for titles in your collection.

Access to SuperSearch and EBSCOhost databases will not be interrupted during the upgrade.

No more PINs!

March 7, 2013

As of February 2013, current Drake students, faculty and staff can use your Drake ID and password (the same one you use to access blueView and Drake webmail) instead of a PIN to access your library account.

Special users, and those without a current University account, will still need to use a PIN.

New mobile feature for SuperSearch

January 25, 2013

Last year, EBSCO provided a mobile interface for SuperSearch that automatically loads when you access SuperSearch from your mobile device. This was a vast improvement over the “mobile-friendly” display that was previously available.

Last week, EBSCO extended this functionality to all devices by providing a “Mobile Site” link at the bottom of every SuperSearch page:

SuperSearch Mobile Site link

Now you can view the mobile version of SuperSearch from your desktop or tablet, but why would you want to? Well, during periods when your desktop’s network connection is noticeably slower, you might consider temporarily switching to the more lightweight mobile interface for faster load times.

Also, the iPad (and some other tablets) are not recognized as mobile devices by SuperSearch, but the mobile display tends to look–and function–better on those smaller screens. You can see an example of the difference below:

SuperSearch full view

SuperSearch Full view

SuperSearch Mobile view

SuperSearch Mobile view

Cowles in the Cloud: Rethinking information access

November 1, 2010

Personal context: Your author is Andrew Welch, Librarian for the Integrated Library System at Cowles Library. I was recently hired to—among other things—assess and oversee the library management system (the software that stores and provides access to our collections and knowledge base). Before coming to Drake, I was a Systems Librarian for the Aurora Public Library system in Colorado.

While access to information is expanding, it is also completing a circle of sorts. In the 60s, information was stored on large mainframes, which by the early 1970s were accessed by individual, specialized terminals. The advent of the personal computer compartmentalized our knowledge base as users began to store information locally on their own machines.

Recently, with the increasing popularity of computing “in the cloud” (think Google Docs instead of Microsoft Office, or Flickr instead of a flash drive), the information pool is recentralizing, with anytime/anywhere retrieval and sharing from virtually unlimited points of access. The cloud is essentially a global mainframe.

Our recent implementation of SuperSearch is cloud-based computing at work. Ebsco Publishing (the vendor behind SuperSearch) continually harvests and indexes bibliographic and article-level data from hundreds of individual databases—including our own catalog of books and journals and our institutional repository—and stores those data in a single repository. Discovery tools like SuperSearch are breaking down technological barriers to information by streamlining our access to multiple resources of knowledge.

One of the driving forces behind the growing popularity of cloud-based computing is the tremendous growth of Web-enabled mobile device usage. These devices are getting smaller, faster and increasingly more multi-functional. Industry analysts predict that the number of mobile devices accessing the Internet will outpace desktop computers in the next few years.

Users—particularly millennials—have grown accustomed to anytime, anywhere access to data and services that until recently were only available in a single physical space.  Physical barriers to information access are dissolving; no longer is it necessary to visit the library (though we love it when you do!) to retrieve information from numerous resources.

Cowles has offered Cowles Mobile, a mobile web interface, since 2009, and we have recently expanded the available content to include a number of databases and a more mobile-friendly version of SuperSearch.

Look for other cloud-based library services in the near future, including a knowledgebase and forum for getting answers to your research questions, as well as a more full-featured set of subject- and course-specific resource guides.

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