Friday, July 30, 2010

Database Alert: Wiley InterScience Becomes Wiley Online Library

Be advised, familiar database Wiley InterScience will transform into Wiley Online Library during the weekend of August 7th and 8th, 2010.

What's in a name? Well, perhaps Wiley wanted to rebrand because the word "InterScience" was not only vague, but also implied an overwhelming orientation towards the pure and applied sciences. But the fact is that Wiley has always covered everything from Business, Economics, Finance & Accounting to Communication & Media Studies. Now the database sounds more subject-neutral.

We have been advised that there will be a period of downtime over the launch weekend. Wiley InterScience will no longer be available from Saturday 7 August at 04:00 am New York EDT. Wiley Online Library is due to go live on Sunday 8 August at 12:00 pm New York EDT.

During this transition period, users will see a message explaining the reason for the unavailability and will be directed to an informational webpage for more details. This interruption in service is necessary "to facilitate a smooth transition to Wiley Online Library."

Once the change occurs, the publisher states that "Wiley Online Library will host the world’s broadest and deepest multidisciplinary collection of online resources covering life, health and physical sciences, social science and the humanities. Built on the latest technology and designed with extensive input from scholars around the world, Wiley Online Library will deliver seamless integrated access to over 4 million articles from 1500 journals."

While we have access to most of the Wiley Journals since 1997, we do NOT own all of the book content that Wiley is also loading into the database. We own some of their ebooks (both monograph and reference) but not even close to all of them. Therefore, since the most valuable material for academic research is peer-reviewed journal literature, you might want to do a keyword, author or other search on the Advanced Search start page and then, on your results page, filter the results in the right frame, clicking Journals to limit the list of citations. See the circled area in the example below:

To quickly see whether you have access to an article, chapter or entry, look for a padlock icon that is unlocked. Accessible materials will fall into three categories, as below.

Our crackerjack librarian team is going to try to stay ahead of these changes but we must wait, in some cases, for the Publisher to make their switchovers and for Web Services to update links. And with all the hundreds of records in the online catalog, we cannot guarantee that all OPAC links will work immediately. Our eJournal Locator company, Serial Solutions, has been working with Wiley during this preparatory period, so when trying to track a journal title, you might want to start by checking the Journal (not article) Title in the eJournal Locator.

We hope this transition goes smoothly. If you have any questions or problems with Wiley content, please stop by, call or email us and we will be happy to assist you.

For more information from Wiley, a page describing improvements and features can be found here. An descriptive flyer can be found here. And a PowerPoint intro to the new platform is available here. Even more tutorials and information should be available at the Online Library's homepage (just look for the turquoise link to the right of the page).

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Notable E-Books: SAGE Reference Series on Green Society

From chemistry to government, students and faculty in a wide variety of disciplines are increasingly interested in greener options and what it takes to move society towards an economically- AND environmentally-sustainable future. To help our researchers get a grounding in a full range of topics related to the environment, we have recently added a set of six new eReference titles published by Sage as their SAGE Reference Series on Green Society. Titles in this basic encyclopedia set include Green Energy, Green Politics, Green Food, Green Cities, Green Business and Green Consumerism. The hundreds of entries you will find in these online volumes can provide useful overviews on many areas of interest.

Each of the title links above will bring you to an individual A-Z eReference book. (You will have to authenticate through the proxy server to access these from off-campus.) Once in a title, you can browse the entry list, consult a subject index, or simply put a keyword term or word combination in the search box in the middle of the screen. If I search for greenwashing in the Green Consumerism encyclopedia, I pull up a good assortment of entries. The first, sorted for relevance, is on that exact topic. But entries like "Green Marketing" are also retrieved by this search and are worth reading.

One of the nice things about the Sage eReference platform is that when you retrieve an individual entry, the database will suggest other topics and will even link to different but related reference titles in the left frame. However, some of these system-generated suggestions are a bit of a stretch! So, if you want to explore further, you might be better off simply doing another search for your topic in the full Sage eReference platform (which is linked in the upper left and right of every platform page). This produces another relevance-ranked list of entries.

If I do this with my greenwashing topic, I get entries from most of the other Green Society titles, but I also identify worthwhile entries in some unrelated Sage titles like the Encyclopedia of Business Ethics and Society.

When you use Sage eReference, don't ignore the icon links at the top of the left frame. These help you to print or email entries. And here you can also see quick citations to the article you reading in APA, MLA and Chicago formatting. And don't forget the last link to "Further Readings." This page will provide leads and (in some cases, active links) to additional resources. These can be handy. For a topic like "greenwashing," knowing what Greenpeace has to say on the topic might be edifying. However, keep in mind that many professors would not find some of Sage's linked suggested readings to be academically acceptable. So, always check with your professor before citing any secondary materials, or even, for that matter, a basic encyclopedia entry like those in the Sage "Green Society" series.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Staff Notes: Farewell to Bob Dugan

With a mix of sadness and great congratulations, the Staff of Sawyer Library says goodbye to Robert E. Dugan, our Library Director of twelve years, as he moves on to a new position as Dean of Libraries at the University of West Florida.

Bob has seen us through many changes--most especially the planning and building of the new Sawyer Library. The old Sawyer Library, largely subterranean, at 8 Ashburton Place, was a challenge for both staff and library users. Bob tried to keep us ahead of the curve, especially in areas of technology--Sawyer Library was one of the first libraries to loan laptops to users and provide them with an in-house wireless network--but the old Sawyer Library was cramped, dark, and an awkward maze of underground floors and mezzanines with no room for new books or new electronics.

Bob worked tirelessly throughout 2004, 2005 and 2006 to get the library planned and built, often rushing back and forth from his Ashburton Place office to the construction site, hard hat in hand--see picture above of "Bob the Builder," hardhat adorned--to attend to every detail. The new library opened, appropriately enough, on Bob's birthday, May 15th, in 2006. (And one of his proudest accomplishments is that the project was on time, under budget, and the Library did not miss a single hour of regularly scheduled service.)

In the new library, Bob continued to keep technology current. Again, our library was an early adopter of several new technologies, including the now popular check-out Kindles. And did you know that Bob was also our IT guy? Bob has spent countless hours "re-ghosting" and repairing Library PCs, laptops, and printers, even filling paper trays, and changing toner. And he also helped many faculty members and departments with software problems and repairs, doing quite a few office and house calls over the years. Clearly, this was not your average--"Don't bother me, I'm thinking big thoughts, wearing my tie!"--library director.

To say he wasn't afraid to get his hands dirty was an understatement. Which is not to say that Bob didn't, in fact, have "big thoughts." Bob has authored and co-authored a great many articles and books on library best practices. His publications include Action Plan for Outcomes Assessment in Your Library, U.S. Government on the Web, and Revisiting Outcomes Assessment in Higher Education. And his latest book, Viewing Library Metrics from Different Perspectives: Inputs, Outputs, and Outcomes just won a prestigious award at the latest ALA Convention.

Bob has even taught classes related to library management at our local "Library School," Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science.

Bob got into this library almost every morning, well before opening, to make sure that the library was ready to greet its public, and he stayed late many a night to set up for and supervise readings and events in the Poetry Center, a facility that he cared deeply about. Shooting video, lining up rows of chairs, Bob did everything he could to make every Poetry Center event a successful one.

His dedication and hard work are not to be questioned. Was he always the most warm and fuzzy boss to work for? I'd have to say no. (Sorry, Dude!) You really did not want to be the person to tell him another printer was broken or some act of petty vandalism had occurred. To this I can testify. But what this proved above all else is how deeply he cared about every printer, every light fixture, every database, and every resource this library offered to the Suffolk community.

That level of commitment and techno-savvy will be very difficult to find again.

So, thanks, Bob! All the best to you in Pensacola. Happy trails to you and to Peg (and your feline pals). And don't forget to crank up the Sugarland on the drive south.

[Bob's Farewell Party, hosted by Dean Greenberg, will be held in the Poetry Center on the Library's 3rd Floor at 3pm on Wednesday, July 7th. Please stop by and celebrate Bob's great service to the University and his future success! And if you can't make the fĂȘte--or even if you can--and you want to leave well wishes here, feel free to do so.]