On May 4th and beginning at 1pm EST, Library Journal will host a 90 min forum on the discovery tools. It doesn’t look as though there is a fee for this event. However, Library Journal takes the opportunity to get become to subscribe to their journal (that box is automatically ticked off). You need to register for the event. If you are interested in registering, take a look at the presenters who represent vendors. I’m not sure how this forum was funded but there might be a drive to sell these vendor’s discovery tools.
We all know about using Google—great for finding the country of Libya on a map, your plumber’s phone number, or the lyrics to Louie, Louie. But what if you are a college student conducting his or her first search for peer-reviewed content, or an established scholar exploring a new area in your field? As academic libraries experience the changing landscape of print to electronic resources, the need has increased for a simplified search experience; indeed, a Google-like experience that is familiar and easy to use. This is where the new generation of search tools, called discovery, enter the game.
This isn’t a new challenge for libraries. The metasearch tools that were among the first attempts to meet this library and user need demonstrated some advancement, but were slow and unwieldy. The process? Querying each of the databases a library subscribed to and returning a single set of results.
Discovery, modeled on the Google-style approach of building and then searching a unified index of available resources, holds great promise. These new discovery tools provide unified indexes of the licensed scholarly publications held by the library, combined with locally held content, like the catalog and institutional repositories.
Following an overview of discovery, presented by Library Journal editor Brian Kenney, each of the four featured vendor panelists will do a short presentation on their discovery solution. Then we’ll open up the panel to questions from the audience—that’s when the real fun will begin!
Jane Burke, Senior Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, ProQuest
Matthew Goldner, Product and Technology Advocate,OCLC
Oren Beit-Arie, Chief Strategy Officer, Ex Libris
Sam Brooks, Senior Vice President, EBSCO Publishing
Brian Kenney, Editor, Library Journal