The web-based Online Catalog is the point of entry for patrons using most library services. The features and design of the catalog were selected to provide library patrons with a successful search experience without requiring intervention by library staff or any special expertise in library systems. Powered by AquaBrowser Library, the catalog uses new search tools and functions that connect to our current ILS and our databases to pull out information for patron searches. Patrons are able to narrow down search results using a wide range of criteria, including format, subject and series. Patrons are also able to rate and tag titles using built-in social networking.
I am pleased to announce some new functionality in Aquabrowser for the three major reading levels; Accelerated Reader (AR), Lexile (LX) and Reading Counts (RC). The online catalog now displays a facet for each of these reading levels and allows one to search by reading level.
Each of the reading levels companies includes a plethora of information in their MARC tag, including points, quizzes and the reading level itself. For this reason the facet data is very detailed and often unique to a particular title. As a post search refining tool these facets may allow you see some other options in the same general reading level, but most of you will find the ability to search by reading more useful than the facets.
Searching by a particular reading level requires specific search syntax in order for your search to be successful. You will want to use the newly created readinglvl quick search with a 2 digit code for the different programs and reading level without punctuation. Following this search syntax will allow you to find materials that have the same reading level in the MARC.
The two digit codes and search examples are:
Accelerated Reader = AR readinglvl:"ar 65" will return 143 titles that have an Accelerated Reader level of 6.5 in all locations
Lexile = LX readinglvl:"lx 700" will return 179 titles that have a Lexile level of 700 for all locations
Reading Counts = RC readinglvl:"rc 53" will return 227 titles for Reading Counts level 5.3 for all locations
The search is not case sensitive; so it can be either ar or AR. Do not use periods or other punctuation within the quotations marks. This search will only search the reading level, not the quiz numbers or any other information associated with the reading level. Do not be surprised if your search results yield fewer titles than expected. Many MARC records do not have reading levels in them since we did not begin to send our MARC records to Marcive until December 2011. Each week SELCO sends records to Marcive that are returned with the reading levels inserted into them, so more and more records will have this information in the future.
AquaBrowser can now display images of your choosing in place of the book cover image.
By using a link to a picture format, without frames, in the locally defined 890 MARC tag Aquabrowser will now display that image as the book cover in both the brief and full display.
If you would like help applying this to some of your kits, historical material or anything, please contact the help desk.
Effective immediately, users will see two changes in the brief display of the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser). The edition statement (MARC tag 250) will now appear in both the brief and full displays of AquaBrowser. To save space, publisher name and location (MARC tag 260 subfield a & b) have been removed from the brief display, but will continue to appear in the full display. The publication year (MARC tag 260 subfield c) will continue to appear in the brief display to maximize the use of the Publication Date facet.
Tyler Irvin, Technology Support Librarian
At the request of several of our members libraries, SELCO has updated the display in AquaBrowser to more clearly delineate that the tags and ratings are user submitted. Previously the labels for these fields were just "Tags" and "Rating;" now the fields read "Patron Tags" and "Patron Rating." This affects the full display of items and brief display of search results. An example is displayed below.
01:17 PM - The problem with AquaBrowser's holdings display has been resolved. In order to fix the problem, we have rolled the bibliographic database back several days. This means that changes made on Friday, 05-11-2012, or later will not be reflected in the catalog until tomorrow (05-15-2012) morning.
We regret this loss of functionality and apologize for the inconvenience it caused.
07:13 PM--Efforts to correct the problem that is preventing holdings information from displaying are still underway. We do not have an estimate on resolving this issue and will continue to post updates as warranted. We apologize for this loss of functionality.
10:23 AM--We are aware of a problem with item holdings information in AquaBrowser not displaying. SELCO staff are working on this issue and further updates will be posted as they become available.
Effective immediately, users will see two substantial changes to the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser). The Format Facet has been adjusted to break out movies by the specific physical carrier of the movie, i.e. DVD, VHS, etc. Additionally a Language Facet has been added that adapts the brief display to better enable the user.
The new Language Facet searches both the primarily language of the material and any additional languages seen in the langague note field of the record. When a user chooses to limit by language the brief display of the record will reload showing that language note in order to help the user understand what they are retrieving.
This is the brief display after a language has been chosen from the Language Facet
Effective immediately, three new search facets have been added to the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser) that will allow you to find material by specific subject information.
These new facets display on the right hand side of AquaBrowser as Genre facet, Geographical Subject facet and a Chronological Subject facet. More information about how these facets work with the MARC bibliographic record will be sent to catalogers and other library staff.
Effective immediately, we’ve added a new search facet to the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser) that will allow you to find material by audience level.
The new facet is listed as Target Audience on the right hand side of AquaBrowser. The facet divides material into three categories, Adult, Juvenile, and Teen.
This division of material is determined by the audience level in a fixed field of the MARC record. MARC tag 008. More detailed information regarding this will be sent to the regions’ catalogers.
It has come to our attention that the Date facet is missing from the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser). This appears to have been an unintended consequence of work that was carried out by AquaBrowser last night to fix an unrelated problem. AquaBrowser staff are working on the issue and we hope to have the facet back sometime today. Fixing the problem may require a new running of the Indexer script that we run every night to synchronize the AquaBrowser and Horizon databases. The Indexer typically takes six to seven hours to run. If they do, in fact, have to run the Indexer to fix the problem it will therefore be late afternoon before we get the Date facet back.
Running the Indexer during normal business hours is not a best practice but we have done it before to fix the occasional problem with the AquaBrowser database. You should see no performance issues or problems with searching while the Indexer runs.
We apologize for this problem.
Effective immediately, we've made a small change to the Online Catalog (AquaBrowser) that should make the Publication Date facet more useful for patrons. Previously, the Publication Date facet was broken down by year. While useful in some narrowly crafted searches, it could result in a long list of publication years in a broader search. Each of these would have to be looked at separately if the patron wanted to see titles published in a range of years.
Now, the Publication Date facet is broken down into ranges, rather than years. This allows the patron to immediately drill down to a range of years instead of laboriously clicking a secession of years one at a time. Once a date range has been selected, the patron can examine the search results for that date range. At the same time, the individual years in the date range are displayed; this allows the patron to drill down further to a specific year, if desired. Here's anexample of the new Publication Date facet:
A broad search for "Harry Truman" reveals a long list of search results published in a variety of years.
Having clicked on the facet for "Last 3 Years", the patron can look at the results set or drill-down further to a specific year.
Those of you with a sharp eye for detail may have noticed something that looks odd in the above example. The facet for "Last 3 Years" actually broke down into more than three years. There are a couple of reasons:
- Publication years in the future, i.e. 2012 and beyond, will always show up. Presumably, these are future acquisitions that libraries want their patrons to be aware of and possibly request. So, it makes sense to include them.
- AquaBrowser defines "Last 3 Years" to mean the current year and the three years previous. A mathematician (or someone who is still arguing that 2001 was the true start of the millennium) will tell you that is incorrect. But it is hoped that the average patron will find that including that "extra" year makes sense.
Bowker has announced that Syndetics, the service that provides book cover art and related content for the SELCO online catalog, is back up. And indeed, their content is available in our catalog once again. Bowker warns that access may be patchy for a while while they get their systems fully back online but so far, it looks good here.
As of 10-31-2011, Syndetics, the service that provides book cover art and excerpts is unavailable due to massive weather related power outages on the East coast.
We expect Syndetics to be back by the end of the day and will post updated information as it becomes available.
04:25 PM Update--Syndetics is not up yet and there has been no word from Bowker (who owns Syndetics) in about three hours. So, we're going to stop predicting when Syndetics content will be available again. As soon as we hear something positive, we will post it here.
07-20-2011, 07:52 AM -- We have rolled the Online Catalog database back to yesterday while we work to resolve a problem with last night's data import. This has restored most bibliographic records for searching. The sole exceptions are any records added yesterday (07-19-2011). Furthermore, any modifications to records made yesterday will not be displayed. We hope to have this issue resolved later today, at which point we will do a new import to restore yesterday's changes and additions.
We apologize for this inconvenience.
07-20-2011, 07:38 AM -- We are aware of a problem in the Online Catalog (powered by AquaBrowser), which is resulting in the vast majority of records not showing up in searches. Steps are being taken to resolve the issue and more details will be posted shortly.
We have implemented a small enhancement to the way Bibliographic request links appear in the Online Catalog. Instead of the small request link that appears in the Full and Brief Record Displays, we now have large buttons that will hopefully jump out at the patron. This change was requested by the ILS Operations / Technology Policy joint committee, in the hopes that it would encourage patrons to place title-level requests rather than using the item-specific request links found in the holdings. Here are some live examples:
You will note that eBook records do not have a request button. As electronic materials that are accessed via OverDrive, they cannot be requested in the catalog. When the request links were small and unobtrusive, this was not an issue. Now that the request link is a large button, its absence on eBook records is a bit glaring. We are watching and listening to find out of enough patrons find this confusing to warrant further action. Adding a graphic where nothing already exists is a bit trickier than taking a text link that already existed and replacing it with a graphic, so we're going to hold off doing anything until we hear evidence that a change is needed. Please let me know your opinion on this matter via comments on this news item.
Due to a combination of budget cuts and lackluster popularity with federated searching (powered by 360Search) within the Online Catalog (powered by AquaBrowser), SELCO has decided to discontinue offering the service. Effective May 01, 2011, online database hits will no longer appear at the top of the AquaBrowser search results list. The Online Databases will continue to be available via the SELCO Research Page and pages we have created for individual libraries.
By making this switch, SELCO will save $8,000 per year, which we feel can be better used to provide services to Online Libraries. Search results in 360Search have been inconsistent and persistent authentication problems with the application have caused it be less useful than we had hoped. Rather than cling to a less-than-satisfactory solution simply because "it's always been there", we have decided to move forward.
SELCO staff will remove the 360Search results from the catalog on the evening of Saturday, April 30 after regular business hours. I recognize that this is short notice for the Online Libraries and apologize for any problems with bibliographic instruction that you might experience. Please contact me for more information if needed.
We've made a minor change to our Suggest a Title webform. There are now a series of checkboxes patrons will use to specify the format for the titles they are suggesting:
Online Libraries will start seeing this in form responses today. For now, these checkboxes are mandatory; the form will not submit unless at least one is checked. Depending on the feedback we get from patrons and Online Library staff, we could decide to make the question optional. Let me know what you and your patrons think!
UPDATE, 12:15 PM The import has successfully completed and all bibliographic records have been restored. Thank you for your patience.
7:43 AM An issue with last night's bibliographic record import from Horizon to AquaBrowser has prevented approximately 1/6 of our title records from showing up in the catalog. There is no obvious pattern to records that are missing. Until this is corrected, those titles will not be displayed in any search. We identified and corrected the proplem around 7:15 AM and started another import. It will take 2 to 4 hours to complete, at which time we should be back to normal. Further updates will be posted to this news item. The same information is being emailed to Online Library Directors and Automation Contacts.
We apologize for this inconvenience.
The folks at AquaBrowser have confirmed the existence of a minor bug in the catalog. Adding quotation marks to a regular search in the Advanced Search does not work. Here's an example:
The patron is looking for The Comfortable Home by Mitchell Gold. He/she goes to Advanced Search and enters "the comfortable home" in the Title search box. This search returns no results. The same search, without the quotation marks, is successful and returns 10 titles with the Gold book being the fourth on the list (with All Locations selected).
Searching "the comfortable home" in the Basic search (which is the default choice) returns 22 results with the Gold book being third on the list (again with All Locations selected). Taking the quotations off the search query returns 359 results with the Gold book again being third on the list.
Until this bug is fixed, SELCO recommends that patrons who wish to search for a specific title using quotation marks do so in Basic Search, which is the default choice when a new session is started.
Q. Why do I have to login again everytime I place a request or use My Account?
Q. I clicked on a term in the Discover Cloud and lost my search? What happened?
Is your library's Online Catalog banner feeling a little stale? Refresh your look with one of these!
For information on how to get one of these (or any other graphic) on your Online Catalog profile, please contact the SELCO Help Desk .
Shorter, more focused videos on specific tasks (searching, placing a request, etc.) are available in the Bookmarks, Handouts, and Videos for Patrons section below in this tab.
The AquaBrowser Working Group is an ad hoc committee created to assist with the design and implementation of the SELCO AquaBrowser online catalog. The AquaBrowser Implementation Project page will serve as a collection point for information.