Decentralizing your library

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Decentralizing your library

  1. 1. Decentralizing Your Website LibGuides as a Web Development ToolSteve Bahnaman - NC Weslyan CollegeSteve Osler - Central Piedmont CC
  2. 2. The Problem: A DisconnectIT Departments and Libraries have different priorities when itcomes to maintaining and updating a website. Libraries IT Departments •Maximum access •Secure •Dynamic, lively, and inviting •Stable •Usable •Low-maintenance •Works on and off campus •More technical design Practically, this leads to sites Because IT deals with with proxies, widgets, news problems when they occur, they feeds, and lots of articulation are more likely to design to with various online resources. avoid problems.
  3. 3. The Problem: ContinuedBecause they are susceptible to the same stereotypes as other people are, your IT department may assume that the #1 priority of the library is stability and security as well.Unless your library has its own IT department, campus IT lacks a vested interest in a dynamic library web presence. They will also never see your library site as critical to their mission.
  4. 4. Goals• Allow librarians to create web content quickly, with professional looking, consistent results.• Increase outreach to college departments by offering them individualized web pages.• Create a dynamic web presence that doesn’t require so much detailed updating every time something changes.
  5. 5. Websites• CPCC: Content Management System (Plone) o Updating content is cumbersome o Limited to standard HTML o Giving librarians rights to create new pages is problematic• NCWC: Drupal-based CMS with homemade editor • Updating content is WYSIWYG but tricky and quirky • Many rules are set by IT and marketers • Librarians cannot edit the widget-and-box-heavy homepage, only the sub-pages
  6. 6. Enter LibGuides• A content-management service designed to allow libraries to make subject- and course- specific guides easily and quickly.• A sharing platform designed to become more and more streamlined as it grows.• An easy way to incorporate the array of 2.0 tools.
  7. 7. Working Smarter, Not Harder• LibGuides consists of different types of content. o Pages o Boxes o Links• Any of these can be reused over and over again across the system.
  8. 8. Types of Content
  9. 9. Types of Content
  10. 10. Types of Content
  11. 11. Working Smarter, Not Harder!
  12. 12. Facilitate Speed Browser Plugin Link Checker Database Import Tool
  13. 13. Facilitate Sharing• CPCC has a few guides that exist only to house shared content. o Database Links o Database and Catalog Search Boxes o Libraryh3lp Chat Widget o Video Tutorials• These can be used the way that many libraries use a shared drive or an intranet…except they can be reused even more easily!
  14. 14. Facilitate Sharing• Widgets showing new guides
  15. 15. Our Reusable Content
  16. 16. Our Reusable Content Database List and Subjects
  17. 17. Our Reusable Content
  18. 18. Cross-Sharing• LibGuides enables users to choose other libraries’ guides as a template for starting their own.• This is voluntary, but is seen as central to the idea of LibGuides as a sharing tool.• You were probably doing this anyway.
  19. 19. A 2.0 Toolbox• Most of the things libraries want to do with Web 2.0 are pretty simple in principle: – Share more in places where patrons already are – Make design more dynamic at point of need• LibGuides facilitates this too, largely through the use of widgets.• LibGuides also has great stats-tracking.
  20. 20. Uses So Far• Traditional Research Guides• Class guides for in-person and online only classes• Basic Skills Guide (For GED Students) o Links to Kahn Academy Exercises• Databases interface• Faculty Workshops and possibly some institutional digital repository functions• Any time we find the need to make a site more dynamic, or where the links change frequently
  21. 21. Potential Drawbacks• NCWC has a heavily “split site” now; search boxes etc. don’t always share content.• A bit “uglier” than some web developers might like.• Difficult to ensure uniformity since so many people create pages.
  22. 22. This was not a LibGuides Commercial
  23. 23. Questions and Comments• What have your web/LibGuides experiences taught you?• What questions do you have for us?

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