CIL 2008: Mobile Search

Mobile Search

Gary Price

Megan Fox

getting to the search box is still a challenge for many users

Gary mentions that he used an iPhone the other day.  The older network on the iPhone (AT&T) was slower than the 3G on his Treo (Sprint).

A very fast but good presentation.  Links available at web.simmons,edu/~fox/mobile.

CIL 2008: Library Web Presence

Library Web Presence

Emily Rimland
Binky Lush
Penn State Library

Kristina DeVoe
Derik Badman
Temple University Libraries

Penn State
Research JumpStart page
built around the idea of widgets
designed for the novice user
includes a few tools that users need the most and use the most
provides instant help
includes search box to the catalog
includes search box for proquest  (demonstrates proquest by searching gnomes, but it did not ask her to authenticate.  )
also includes Research Quick Start  (links to research guides)
also includes quick links
good for teaching, as all the resources you are going to teach a class should be on this page
widgets can be added to iGoogle
Binky went to a place called WidgetBox  (maybe a cool idea to do a business search page)
register with WidgetBox, then click to make a new widget
WidgetBox lets you test your widget, and also gives you analytics.
this may make a lot more sense than doing a toolbar, as all you have to do is update the widget and it will update on all pages.
WidgetBox does allow you to make a facebook app, but it does not allow you to take advance of the social
next up is to do some assessment
been a successful project thus far

Temple University
Subject Guides 2.0
Engaging Patrons Empowering Librarians
old subject guides were static pages
used a Contribute system, but didn’t like it
LibGuides  –purchases in Spring 2007
key benefits of LibGuides
1.  Ease of Use–easy to add stuff–copy and paste urls, add descriptions, etc.
2.  Content is modular
3.  organization is flexible
4.  comments, polls, etc are available
5.  quick bibs

what the numbers say
looks like the month of march was more than most of fall semester
fairly impressive numbers

guides need marketing

other software options
good article in Code4Lib

Meebo Chat for Tech Tools Talk

Paul and I hope you enjoy the talk.  Please use this chat room to interact during the presentation.

New Rules of Web Design

Jeff Wisniewski
University of Pittsburgh

Simplicity Rules
Everyone wants to be like Google.  But Google is a single purpose site.  Library websites differ because they serve multiple functions. 

Content is king, but design matters alot.  Novice users judge in the blink of an eye, and may only judge based on how your site looked.  With an increase in professional design, comes an increase in credibility. 

Need to design your website for what your users are doing.

The rule of seven
Somewhere between 5 and 9 categories for top level navigation

The 3 click rule
This rule is dead
Design for SCENT
Users will click so long as they feel they are on the right path

Design for 800 X 600
Best to optimize for 1024 X 768
Need to think about other platforms, such as handhelds
Use CSS media types  (there is a CSS media type for handheld)  I really need to look at this. 
Make sure you have a flexible design. 

Colors for the web
Most users browse with 24-bit color rendering

For Redesign Inspiration
Take a survey or the general web.  Don’t just look at other library websites. 

How often do you redesign?
A constant, more iterative design is less disruptive. 

Follow your own conventions
Be consistent with what you call things

Established web standards and conventions
home link in the upper left
if you have a banner, make it clickable

Does greater bandwidth give us more design freedom?
Mobile users are on slower networks

Need to support all browsers
For basic content—YES!

Separation of presentation and content means that you don’t have to design a text-only version of the site

CSS support for layout is good enough for modern browsers
“Be a


The very top of the page is most likely to be ignored or only looked at briefly.  “banner blindness”
Don’t put anything at the very top of the page if it is mission critical. 
Google heat map shows what parts of the page are visible to the user, while showing which parts are ignored.  Note to self, the top right is ignored. 

Flash can be used for effective animation and interactivity

Mouseover menus raise usability considerations.  The menus often require ninja-like mouse skills

Tell people when you are going to be opening a new window. 
Content such as PDF, Word, etc, it makes sense to open in a new window. 
Tabbed browsing makes this less of an issue. 

What about scrolling?
these days users are comfortable scrolling
but keep most important content above the fold

Images of people
generally images increase trust
labeled people increase credibility the most


Online Outreach: 2.0 Marketing Strategies for Libraries

Aaron Schmidt and Sarah Houghton-Jan

Rather than blogging every single slide, I am pulling out key notes that can apply to my specific library. 

Make your library website two-way.  This will allow them to give feedback.  We allow this on our blogs, which are moderated.  Also, our FAQs allow for users to submit questions. 

Blurring of jurisdictional lines.  Online, everyone’s patrons are your patrons.  Personally, I get questions quite often from people from other universities and even other countries.  This is often very difficult for academic libraries to try, as many only want to serve their own patrons.  Often this is the result of license restrictions, but I imagine it is still a mostly cultural thing. 

Is your library on Wikipedia?  Perhaps your library should be on the page for your town.  I just added our local libraries on the Athens, Ohio page in the Community Web Links.

List your library in a wireless directory.  wifi411, jwire, wi-fi zone, etc.

Solicit email addresses with sign-up sheets so that users can opt in for newsletters, etc.

What about experimenting with SMS reference service?  How would we staff it?  Would we just have a librarian carry “the SMS phone” for the duration of their shift?  Can librarians get their libraries to help pay for a texting plan?  This seems like our next avenue that we need to go in, but the details need to be worked out. 

Should academic librarians be using Twitter?  Would students read it?  What sort of things would we Twitter at the library?  I have a Twitter feed  that I used and embedded on my wiki and blog, but took it down once I started posting personal things (updates of the kids, etc).  Perhaps I need to revisit the idea for reference and work stuff.