Status Report on UC’s Next Generation Melvyl Pilot Based on WorldCat Local

The California Digital Library has released Next Generation Melvyl Pilot: Update to the University Librarians, November 20, 2008, which describes the progress made in testing OCLC's WorldCat Local as a replacement for the existing Melvyl Catalog.

Here's an excerpt:

In the six months that the Next Generation Melvyl Pilot has been live, we have gathered information on the user experience, identified the strengths and remaining challenges of the system, and compared the pilot with UC’s goals as outlined in the 2005 Bibliographic Services Task Force (BSTF) Report. Users value the breadth of the service, the integration of journal articles, and the ease of use. Users find challenging the lack of Request integration, difficulties in emailing and printing, and problems in accessing materials, all of which are on OCLC’s roadmap for improvements in the coming year. The pilot is meeting many of the goals outlined in the BSTF report and OCLC has demonstrated the ability to make rapid improvements to the system.

Based on these data, we believe that the pilot shows sufficient promise that we should transition the project into a pre-production phase, in which both UC and OCLC will engage in the planning and preparation needed to position us for going to production in mid-2009 if we continue to see successful progress.

NetLibrary UK Library Survey Shows Strong Interest in Increasing E-Book Holdings

A survey of 300 UK libraries by NetLibrary indicates that three-fourths of academic libraries and half of public libraries plan to increase e-book holdings next year.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

A massive 85% of public Libraries responding to the survey indicated that they were most interested in developing fiction eBook collections despite recent research that suggests eBooks are most often used for reference purposes. Possibly this trend is being fuelled by the growth in take up and availability of eBook reading devices among public library users such as Amazon’s Kindle and Sony’s Reader. . . .

Of the academic libraries who responded to the survey, half indicated that their use of eBooks was to support their core reading lists in various subject areas—the main ones being Business/Management (13%), Medicine/Health (9%) Education (6%) and Engineering (5%).

Beyond the Silos of the LAMs: Collaboration Among Libraries, Archives and Museums

OCLC Programs and Research has published Beyond the Silos of the LAMs: Collaboration Among Libraries, Archives and Museums.

Here's an excerpt:

The project that forms the basis of this report began in 2007, when RLG Programs initiated work on the program, Library, Archive and Museum Collaboration. The goal of the program was threefold: to explore the nature of library, archive and museum (LAM) collaborations, to help LAMs collaborate on common services and thus yield greater productivity within their institutions, and to assist them in creating research environments better aligned with user expectations—or, to reference this report’s title, to move beyond the often-mentioned silos of LAM resources which divide content into piecemeal offerings.

At the heart of the program was a series of workshops designed to be both exploratory and outcome-oriented. Workshop participants were asked to identify motivations and obstacles in the collaborative process and plan new collaborative projects and programs that addressed needs at their own institutions.

Five RLG Programs partner sites were selected to participate in the workshops: the University of Edinburgh, Princeton University, the Smithsonian Institution, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and Yale University.

OCLC Announces WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry Beta

OCLC has announced the WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry beta, a union catalog of copyright information.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry is a community working together to build a union catalog of copyright evidence based on WorldCat, which contains more than 100 million bibliographic records describing items held in thousands of libraries worldwide. In addition to the WorldCat metadata, the Copyright Evidence Registry uses other data contributed by libraries and other organizations.

Digitization projects continue for books in the public domain, but books whose copyright status is unknown are destined to remain in print and on shelves until their status can be determined. The process to determine copyright status can be lengthy and labor intensive. The goal of the Copyright Evidence Registry is to encourage a cooperative environment to discover, create and share copyright evidence through a collaboratively created and maintained database, using the WorldCat cooperative model to eliminate duplicate efforts. . . .

The Copyright Evidence Registry six-month pilot was launched July 1 to test the concept and functionality. Users can search the Copyright Evidence Registry to find information about a book, learn what others have said about its copyright status, and share what they know. . . .

During a later stage of the pilot, OCLC will add a feature enabling pilot libraries to create and run automated copyright rules conforming to standards they define for determining copyright status. The rules will help libraries analyze the information available in the Copyright Evidence Registry and form their own conclusions about copyright status.

New CONTENTdm Add-on: OCLC Web Harvester

OCLC has announced the availability of Web Harvester, which allows CONTENTdm sites to import Web content into their systems.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

OCLC's Web Harvester evolved from collaboration with several state libraries, state archives and universities over a period of seven years. Participants emphasized the increasing importance of collecting and managing Web-based content as information resources move online yet remain within libraries' and archives' collection scopes.

The Web Harvester is integrated into library workflows, allowing library staff to capture content as part of the cataloging process. The captured content is then sent to the organization's digital collections where it can be managed with other CONTENTdm digital content. . . .

The Web Harvester is accessed via the Connexion client, OCLC's powerful cataloging service, and captures content ranging from single, Web-based documents to entire Web sites. Once retrieved, users can review the captured Web content and add it to a collection managed by OCLC's CONTENTdm software, a complete solution for storing, managing and delivering a library's digital collections to the Web. Once in CONTENTdm, then Web content can be accessed and managed in conjunction with other digital collections. Harvested items are discoverable from, WorldCat Local and the CONTENTdm Web interface.

For additional security, master files of the captured content also can be ingested to the OCLC Digital Archive, the service for long-term storage of originals and master files from libraries' digital collections.

OCLC Announces Digital Archive Service

OCLC has announced the availability of a Digital Archive service.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The service provides a secure storage environment for libraries to easily manage and monitor master files and digital originals. The importance of preserving master files grows as a library's digital collections grow. Libraries need a workflow for capturing and managing master files that finds a balance between the acquisition of both digitized and born-digital content while not outpacing a library's capability to manage these large files. . . .

The Digital Archive service is a specially designed system in a controlled operating environment dedicated to the ongoing managed storage of digital content. OCLC has developed specific systems processes and procedures for the service tuned to the management of data for the long term.

From the time content arrives, the Digital Archive systems begin inspecting it to ensure continuity. OCLC systems perform quality checks and record the results in a "health record" for each file. Automated systems revisit these quality checks periodically so libraries receive up-to-date reports on the health of the collection. OCLC provides monthly updated information for all collections on the personal archive report portal.

For users of CONTENTdm, OCLC's digital collection management software for libraries and other cultural heritage institutions, the Digital Archive service is an optional capability integrated with various workflows for building collections. Master files are secured for ingest to the Digital Archive service using the CONTENTdm Acquisition Station, the Connexion digital import capability and the Web Harvesting service.

For users of other content management systems, the Digital Archive service provides a low-overhead mechanism for safely storing master files.

RLG Program Releases Copyright Investigation Summary Report

OCLC's RLG Program has released the Copyright Investigation Summary Report.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

This report summarizes interviews conducted between August and September 2007 with staff RLG Partner institutions. Interviewees shared information about how and why institutions investigate and collect copyright evidence, both for mass digitization projects and for items in special collections.

OCLC Openly Informatics Link Evaluator for Firefox

OCLC Openly Informatics has announced a free link checking plug-in for Firefox called Link Evaluator.

Here a brief description from the Link Evaluator page:

Link Evaluator is a Firefox extension designed to help users evaluate the availability of online resources linked to from a given Web page. When started, it automatically follows all links on the current page, and assesses the responses of each URL (link). . . .

After each link is checked, it is highlighted with a color based on the relative success of the result: green for fully successful, shades of yellow for partly successful, and red for unsuccessful.

It requires Mozilla Firefox version 1.5 (or later).