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Harvesting From Many Silos at Web-scale Makes E-content Truly Discoverable


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For many years, libraries have been dreaming about a simple, easy, fast search solution that unifies all of the resources into a single repository. In the current model, the user is faced with the problem of dealing with multiple information silos and no-compelling starting place in implementing their search. Recently, the introduction of a “Web-scale discovery” layer, or Next-Generation Catalog, can provide this starting point for library patrons. This talk will discuss how these Next-Generation library discovery applications can go beyond the local library holdings and beyond federated search to offer a single Google like search service across all local and subscription resources.

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Harvesting From Many Silos at Web-scale Makes E-content Truly Discoverable

  1. 1. <ul><li>Harvesting from Many Silos at Web-scale Makes eContent Truly Discoverable </li></ul><ul><li>George Boston </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic Resources and Serials Librarian </li></ul><ul><li>Western Michigan University </li></ul><ul><li>Scott Garrison </li></ul><ul><li>Associate Dean for Public Services and Technology </li></ul><ul><li>Western Michigan University </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  2. 2. The Challenge – How Best to Serve the Users… <ul><li>Broad discovery of both known and known items in our collections, not just in their discipline </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Students aren't as concerned where the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>results come from, as long as it's relevant </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Faculty need interdisciplinary research </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be more like Google: simple, easy, fast </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fewer places to look for more kinds of content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Single search interface </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get to the actual item in fewest clicks possible </li></ul></ul>ER&L 2010
  3. 3. Users are faced with wading through several information silos to get what they need: <ul><li>OPACs </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic resources (e-journals, e-books, databases, articles, etc.) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Separate interfaces </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple targets for the same resources </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Local Resources (ContentDM, Luna) </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  4. 4. ER&L 2010 <ul><li>Vendor acquisitions, consolidation, catch-up </li></ul><ul><li>Some products are still years away </li></ul><ul><li>Open source options are emerging </li></ul><ul><li>New standards are forming </li></ul><ul><ul><li>FRBR, FRAD, FRSAR, KBART, RDA, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>These lead to great FUD (Flux, Uncertainty, Disruption) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Everything we're doing is on shifting sands </li></ul></ul>Changing Marketplace:
  5. 5. ER&L 2010 <ul><li>Allows some general, discipline searching </li></ul><ul><li>Mixed, incomplete results </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Especially if one or more databases “fail” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>As slow as the slowest silos </li></ul><ul><li>If local, very network-inefficient </li></ul><ul><li>Many different metadata schemas, less sophisticated searching </li></ul>One solution: Cross-silo Federated search
  6. 6. Another solution: “Web Scale discovery” <ul><li>Metadata is harvested from various content sources and searches are conducted against a single index, this... </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduces latency that federated searches have </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Normalizes the metadata in a common search interface for a more consistent search and display </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easily scalable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hardware upgrades to the “Cloud” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No need to rely on Vendor hardware upgrades </li></ul></ul>ER&L 2010
  7. 7. ER&L 2010 <ul><li>Searching for the 21 st century </li></ul><ul><ul><li>One search box </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Searching through multiple silos at once </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>User-centered design, based on research </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Puts our metadata to better use </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Faceted searching </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Relevant results are presented to the User </li></ul></ul></ul>Advantages of Web Scale discovery
  8. 8. ER&L 2010 <ul><li>Built on 21 st century technology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ajax, API </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SOLR – provides speed optimized indexing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Highly configurable interfaces </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Design the interface to look the way we want </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can integrate well with other discovery tools (VuFind, Primo, etc) </li></ul></ul>Other advantages…
  9. 9. “ Web Discovery” solutions: <ul><li>Serials Solutions Summon </li></ul><ul><li>Ex Libris Primo Central </li></ul><ul><li>Ebsco Discovery Service </li></ul><ul><li>Innovative Interfaces Encore Discovery </li></ul><ul><li>OCLC WorldCat Local </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  10. 10. ER&L 2010 Summon
  11. 11. ER&L 2010 Summon Search Results:
  12. 12. <ul><li>Primo Central </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  13. 13. <ul><li>EbscoHost Discovery Service </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Demo: </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  14. 14. <ul><li>Encore Discovery </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  15. 15. <ul><li>WorldCat Local </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  16. 16. Implementing Summon at WMU <ul><li>Why discovery at WMU? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dissatisfaction with federated search options </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cost was a big factor (MetaLib required Primo – so we'd need two products rather than just one) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>We tried a 360 Search trial – results disappointing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LibQual survey </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Users wanted a single search box – ala Google </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Strategic plans – University and Library </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Optimizing discoverability of resources </li></ul></ul></ul>ER&L 2010
  17. 17. WMU background <ul><li>Carnegie research university </li></ul><ul><li>Undergrad enrollment = 25,000+ </li></ul><ul><li>5 libraries serving multiple sites statewide </li></ul><ul><li>1.7M+ bibliographic records </li></ul><ul><li>400+ databases </li></ul><ul><li>4,500+ print journals </li></ul><ul><li>42,000+ online journals, newspapers </li></ul><ul><li>80,000+ online books </li></ul><ul><li>Voyager, SFX, EZproxy, CONTENTdm, Luna </li></ul><ul><li>Summon and VuFind as discovery systems </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  18. 18. Timeline for implementation <ul><li>2009 March – signed as Beta partner </li></ul><ul><li>2009 June – Initially operational as a “pre-Beta” </li></ul><ul><li>2009 September – Rolled out to the public as a “trial” </li></ul><ul><li>2010 January – Integrated into the web site </li></ul><ul><li>2010 Fall – Fully integrated into main tabbed box </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  19. 19. Integrating Summon into our web site ER&L 2010
  20. 20. Set up challenges <ul><li>Extract local data from OPAC (Voyager) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Previously this had been done for VuFind, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>MelCat (a Michigan-wide Union catalog) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Extract From our ERMS (Verde) </li></ul><ul><li>Extract from SFX </li></ul><ul><li>Tweak information in Summon client center </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  21. 21. Configuration challenges <ul><li>Consistent metadata </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Backstage clean-up of OPAC data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Requires Summon to re-ingest/re-index the catalog data </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Match and Merge” to eliminate duplicate entries for articles – this is still in development </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Inconsistent linking to resources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only good as publisher metadata and interface </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not all vendors are OpenURL “compliant” </li></ul></ul>ER&L 2010
  22. 22. On-Going maintenance challenges <ul><li>Summon Client Center is a bit clunky </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Still a work-in-progress </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Limited usage statistics capability </li></ul><ul><li>No tool for local configuration in the client center yet </li></ul><ul><li>Full integration into Client Center expected later in 2010 </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  23. 23. Using the system <ul><li>Advantages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Agile development cycle – frequent feature releases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Integrates well with VuFind </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good place to begin research </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Great for interdisciplinary research </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Disadvantages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can't easily specify targeted index searching like in VuFind – Summon basically searches one big index </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>It's not built like the search interfaces we've used in the past </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hard to tell what exactly is included – not a clean match </li></ul></ul>ER&L 2010
  24. 24. Evaluation and the way forward <ul><li>Focus groups and Usability Studies </li></ul><ul><li>“ What databases are included?” </li></ul><ul><li>Better interface design </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use of the API allows us to build an interface </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Integrating into Subject and other guides </li></ul><ul><li>Will it allow Librarians to stop teaching about interfaces, but rather how to evaluate results? </li></ul>ER&L 2010
  25. 25. <ul><li>Thank you for your attention. </li></ul><ul><li>Questions? </li></ul><ul><li>George Boston - [email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Scott Garrison - </li></ul>ER&L 2010