North Carolina State University Libraries Mobile

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North Carolina State University Libraries Mobile

  1. 1. Library in Your Pocket Strategies and Techniques for Developing Successful Mobile Services David Woodbury, NCSU Libraries Fellow Jason Casden, Digital Technologies Development Librarian NCSU Libraries
  2. 2. About NC State University <ul><li>Largest higher education institution in the state </li></ul><ul><ul><li>31,000 students </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>8,000 faculty members </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Large focus on science, technology, engineering & mathematics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>History of innovation & collaboration </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Centennial campus as research hub </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many public and private partnerships </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Our motivation
  4. 4. NCSU Mobile Web (Campus Site)
  5. 5. NCSU Libraries Mobile Team <ul><li>Jason Casden, Digital Technologies Development Librarian </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Developer </li></ul></ul><ul><li>David Woodbury, NCSU Libraries Fellow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Project manager </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Markus Wust, Digital Collections and Preservation Librarian </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Developer & co-creator of MobiLIB </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Project timeline <ul><li>Campus site launch (September 3, 2009) </li></ul><ul><li>Planning & wireframes (September) </li></ul><ul><li>Programming (early October) </li></ul><ul><li>Beta launch (late October) </li></ul><ul><li>Formal launch & promotion (November) </li></ul><ul><li>Main website redirect (December) </li></ul><ul><li>Over 22,000 pages viewed (January 2010) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Our mobile services <ul><li>Locations & Hours </li></ul><ul><li>Computer Availability </li></ul><ul><li>Catalog Search </li></ul><ul><li>Reference Services </li></ul><ul><li>News & Events </li></ul><ul><li>Webcam Feeds </li></ul><ul><li>Link to campus mobile site </li></ul>http://m.lib.ncsu.edu
  8. 8. Locations & Hours
  9. 9. Computer Availability
  10. 10. Catalog Search
  11. 11. Reference Services
  12. 12. What to mobilize? <ul><li>What services are currently available? </li></ul><ul><li>What services are applicable on a mobile device? </li></ul><ul><li>What services translate well to the mobile environment? </li></ul><ul><li>What tools can be created easily? </li></ul><ul><li>What would be fun to see? </li></ul>
  13. 13. Don’t mobilize everything <ul><li>Nearly 100 links! </li></ul><ul><li>Always can link back to home page, if needed </li></ul>
  14. 14. “ Mobile” is not just shrinking the page
  15. 15. Use only essential, relevant content
  16. 16. Use only essential, relevant content
  17. 17. Reduce options, simplify
  18. 18. Use the mobile interface
  19. 19. Provide appropriate tools for the user’s context
  20. 20. Expose hidden, useful content
  21. 21. Mobile Planning Tips <ul><li>Start with the services that make mobile sense </li></ul><ul><li>Limit the amount of data entry </li></ul><ul><li>Limit the scope of the information </li></ul><ul><li>Link back to main site </li></ul><ul><li>Promote your site </li></ul><ul><li>Talk to students to get reality check </li></ul>
  22. 22.
  23. 23. When to Make a Native App <ul><li>Charging for it </li></ul><ul><li>Creating a game </li></ul><ul><li>Using specific locations* </li></ul><ul><li>Using cameras </li></ul><ul><li>Using accelerometers </li></ul><ul><li>Accessing the filesystems </li></ul><ul><li>Offline users </li></ul>* Actually available to web-based applications
  24. 24. The Case for Mobile Web Apps <ul><li>“ I believe that unless your application meets one of these native application criteria, you should not create a native application, but should instead focus on building a mobile web application.” </li></ul><ul><li>— Brian Fling, “Mobile Design and Development” </li></ul>
  25. 25. Our tools <ul><li>Mobile website </li></ul><ul><ul><li>XHTML 1.0 transitional </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CSS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>non-essential JavaScript and AJAX </li></ul></ul><ul><li>MIT Mobile Web Open Source Project </li></ul><ul><li>Leaned on pre-existing web services </li></ul><ul><li>Targeted higher-end devices </li></ul>
  26. 26. Best practices <ul><li>Standards and official guidelines </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Useful, but slow-moving </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t get stuck </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Design Patterns </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Still emerging </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Lots of Devices Top Level iPhones, Android phones, Palm Pre Large touch screens, sophisticated web capabilities Middle Level Blackberry, Nokia smartphones, Windows mobile, etc. May lack touch screen and some CSS and JavaScript capabilities. Low Level Web-enabled flip phones Small screens, low web functionality
  28. 28. Content Adaptation
  29. 29. Separating data from presentation
  30. 30. Testing <ul><li>CC BY-SA 2.0: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wfryer/3929189482/ </li></ul>
  31. 31. Recommendations
  32. 32. Be Agile <ul><li>Rapid Development Cycle </li></ul><ul><li>Think iteratively </li></ul><ul><li>Adjust to change quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid paralysis </li></ul>
  33. 33. Play
  34. 34. Collaborate <ul><li>Campus efforts </li></ul><ul><li>External projects </li></ul><ul><li>Steal what you like </li></ul><ul><li>Improve it, so it can be stolen back </li></ul>
  35. 35. In Summary… <ul><li>Mobile websites are becoming very sophisticated </li></ul><ul><li>Mobile web app development is web development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>just a little different </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You can do it </li></ul>
  36. 36. What’s popular at NCSU Libraries
  37. 37. What devices are being used?
  38. 38. Coming Soon! <ul><li>Study room reservation service </li></ul><ul><li>Patron account information (checkouts & renewals) </li></ul><ul><li>Access to electronic reserves for classes </li></ul><ul><li>Building wayfinding </li></ul><ul><li>Tools for staff </li></ul><ul><li>Initiative for mobile projects at NCSU Libraries </li></ul>
  39. 39. Resources <ul><li>Ballard, Barbara. (2007). Designing the Mobile User Experience. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. </li></ul><ul><li>Fling, Brian. (2009). Mobile Design and Development: Practical Concepts and Techniques for Creating Mobile Sites and Web Apps . Sebastopol, California: O’Reilly Media. </li></ul><ul><li>W3C Mobile Web Best Practices: http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/ </li></ul><ul><li>W3C CSS Mobile Profile: http://www.w3.org/TR/css-mobile/ </li></ul><ul><li>Griggs, K., Bridges, L. M., Rempel, H. G. (2009). “library/mobile: Tips on Designing and Developing Mobile Web Sites”, The Code4Lib Journal , Issue 8. Retrieved from: http://journal.code4lib.org/articles/2055 </li></ul><ul><li>MIT Mobile Web Open Source Project: http://sourceforge.net/projects/mitmobileweb/ </li></ul><ul><li>NCSU Libraries Mobile Project Page: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/dli/projects/librariesmobile/ </li></ul>

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