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Unbundling the ILS @ NCSU: implementation of an e-commerce search solution. Emily Lynema Andrew K. Pace North Carolina State University Libraries LITA 2006 National Forum. Or better yet…. Endeca: implementing a faceted search solution for the library catalog. Agenda. The Context:

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unbundling the ils @ ncsu implementation of an e commerce search solution

Unbundling the ILS @ NCSU: implementation of an e-commerce search solution

Emily Lynema

Andrew K. Pace

North Carolina State University Libraries

LITA 2006 National Forum

or better yet
Or better yet…

Endeca: implementing a faceted search solution for the library catalog

LITA 2006 National Forum

agenda
Agenda
  • The Context:
    • Next Gen Search Tools vs. OPAC Problems
  • Local Implementation
    • Why, What and How?
    • Challenges Encountered
  • Assessment
    • Usage Statistics
    • Usability Testing
  • The Future

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide4

The Context

LITA 2006 National Forum

online catalogs
Online Catalogs

"Most integrated library systems, as they are currently configured and used, should be removed from public view."

- Roy Tennant, CDL

LITA 2006 National Forum

next gen search tools
Next gen search tools
  • Proving that it’s possible to improve the search experience beyond the functionality that traditional OPACs have supported.

LITA 2006 National Forum

nextgen library search tools
NextGen Library Search Tools
  • WorldCat.org (Beta)
  • RedLightGreen (RLG), subsumed by WorldCat
  • OCLC Fictionfinder
  • Vivisimo clustered search (Serials Solutions, Ex Libris)
  • Aquabrowser visual context
  • Endeca ProFind
  • Innovative Interfaces “OPAC Pro” and “Encore”
  • Ex Libris “Primo”
  • Polaris, AJAX-Enabled OPAC
  • SirsiDynix Enterprise Portal System, FAST
  • Talis, et alWeb Services
  • EBSCO Research Databases
  • Georgia PINES, Koha, and the Library 2.0 Bandwagon
  • And of course the entire commercial web

LITA 2006 National Forum

existing catalogs are hard to use
Existing catalogs are hard to use
  • Known item searching works pretty well (sometimes), but …
  • Lots of topical searches and poor subject access
    • keyword gives too many or too few results – leads to general distrust among users
    • authority searching is under-utilized and misunderstood
  • Relevance = system sort order
  • Impossible to browse the collection
  • Unforgiving on spelling errors, stemming
  • Response time doesn’t meet expectations of web-savvy users

LITA 2006 National Forum

valuable metadata is buried
Valuable metadata is buried
  • Subject headings are not leveraged in keyword searching
    • they should be browsed or linked from, not searched
  • Data from the item record is not leveraged
    • should be able to easily filter based on user’s changing requirements using item type, location, circulation status, popularity

LITA 2006 National Forum

what s the big picture
What’s the big picture?
  • Improve the quality of the library catalog user experience
  • Exploit our existing authority infrastructure (aka make MARC data work harder)
  • Build a more flexible catalog tool that can be integrated with discovery tools of the future.

LITA 2006 National Forum

what is endeca
What is Endeca?
  • Software company based in Cambridge, MA
  • Search and information access technology provider for a number of major e-commerce websites
  • Developers of the Endeca Information Access Platform

LITA 2006 National Forum

why endeca
Why Endeca?
  • Customized relevance ranking of results
  • Better subject access by leveraging available metadata (including item level data!) through facets
  • Improved response time
  • Enhanced natural language searching through spell correction, etc.
  • Browse

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide19

Local Implementation

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide20
Demo

LITA 2006 National Forum

relevance ranking
Relevance ranking

Based on locally customizable algorithm:

  • Most relevant: query as entered
  • For multi-term searches: phrase match
  • Field match
    • title match more relevant than notes match
  • Other factors:
    • number of fields matched
    • weighted frequency (tf/idf)
    • static ordering (publication date, circulation stats)

LITA 2006 National Forum

faceted browse
Faceted browse
  • Combine search and browse in single interface (Guided Navigation™)
  • Filter results across multiple facets
  • Remove facets in any order

LITA 2006 National Forum

facet refinements
Availability

Author

Library

Format

Language

New

LC Classification

Subject: Topic

Subject: Genre

Subject: Region

Subject: Era

Facet refinements

LITA 2006 National Forum

true browse
True browse
  • Regain ability to browse catalog without entering any search terms

LITA 2006 National Forum

added search tools
Added search tools
  • Automatic spell correction
  • “Did you mean…” suggestions
  • Automatic stemming

LITA 2006 National Forum

the nitty gritty
The nitty gritty
  • Endeca co-exists with SirsiDynix Unicorn ILS and Web2 online catalog
    • Endeca handles keyword search
    • Web2 handles authority search and detail page display
  • Endeca indexes MARC records exported nightly from Unicorn
  • Endeca = discovery portion of the ILS

LITA 2006 National Forum

technical overview
Technical overview

Information Access Platform

NCSU exports and reformats

Data Foundry

MDEX Engine

Parse text files

Raw MARC data

Indices

Flat text files

HTTP

HTTP

NCSU Web Application

LITA 2006 National Forum

technical overview1
Technical overview

Offline - Nightly

NCSU exports and reformats

Data Foundry

MDEX Engine

Parse text files

Raw MARC data

Indices

Flat text files

HTTP

HTTP

NCSU Web Application

LITA 2006 National Forum

technical overview2
Technical overview

Always Online

NCSU exports and reformats

Data Foundry

MDEX Engine

Parse text files

Raw MARC data

Indices

Flat text files

HTTP

HTTP

NCSU Web Application

LITA 2006 National Forum

implementation team
Implementation team
  • Seven member team
    • 5 IT/DLI staff, 1 cataloging librarian, 1 reference librarian
    • As a team: functional requirements, metadata, interface issues (total of 40-60 hours)
    • Java-trained IT librarian (~40 hrs/wk for 14 weeks)
    • IT project manager: (~10 hours/wk for 20 weeks)
  • Timeline
    • License / negotiation: Spring 2005
    • Software acquisition: Summer 2005
    • Implementation: Aug 2005 to Jan 2006

LITA 2006 National Forum

local decision points
Local decision points

Identifying appropriate facets

LITA 2006 National Forum

local decision points1
Local decision points
  • Identifying appropriate facets
  • Designing the user interface

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide34

1. Availability

2. Library of Congress Classification

  • Subject: Topic
  • Subject: Genre
  • Format
  • Library
  • Subject: Region
  • Subject: Era
  • Language
  • Author

LITA 2006 National Forum

local decision points2
Local decision points
  • Identifying appropriate facets
  • Designing the user interface
  • Integrating authority searching and Endeca keyword searching

LITA 2006 National Forum

pre endeca catalog search
Pre-Endeca Catalog Search
  • 6 search tabs
  • 14 radio buttons
  • 1-4 drop down boxes
  • Title begins with search default

LITA 2006 National Forum

post endeca catalog search
Post-Endeca catalog search
  • 3 search tabs
  • No radio buttons
  • 2 search boxes
  • Keyword search default

Endeca keyword

Web2 authority

LITA 2006 National Forum

local decision points3
Local decision points
  • Identifying appropriate facets
  • Designing the user interface
  • Integrating authority searching and Endeca keyword searching
  • Creating the relevance ranking algorithm for each field index

LITA 2006 National Forum

special challenges encountered
Special challenges encountered
  • ILS data with MARC-8 encoding => Text data with UTF-8 encoding
  • Data consistency between ILS and Endeca catalog indexes (updates!)
  • Data issues revealed by exposing metadata (ex: subject headings) in facets

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide40

Assessment

LITA 2006 National Forum

usage statistics
Usage statistics

LITA 2006 National Forum

usage statistics1
Usage statistics

LITA 2006 National Forum

usage statistics2
Usage statistics

LITA 2006 National Forum

usage statistics3
Usage statistics

LITA 2006 National Forum

usability testing
Usability testing
  • 10 undergraduate students
    • 5 with new Endeca-based interface
    • 5 with old catalog interface
    • Identical searching tasks
  • Data collected
    • Task difficulty/failure
    • Task duration

LITA 2006 National Forum

usability testing1
Usability testing

LITA 2006 National Forum

usability testing2
Usability testing

LITA 2006 National Forum

usability testing3
Usability testing
  • For students, relevance ranking is key.
    • March 2006: ~13% continue to page 2
  • Faceted browsing is intuitive, even for students who don’t use it.
  • Beware of library jargon
    • “keyword anywhere”, “keyword in subject”
  • User behavior is influenced by previous experience.

LITA 2006 National Forum

relevance
Relevance
  • Are search results in Endeca more likely to be relevant to a user’s query than search results in old OPAC?
  • 100 topical user searches from 1 month in Fall 2005
  • How many of top 5 results relevant?
    • 40% relevant in Web2 OPAC; 31 no hits
    • 68% relevant in Endeca catalog; 12 no hits

LITA 2006 National Forum

slide50

The Future

LITA 2006 National Forum

future directions
Future directions
  • Experiment with FRBR search/display through partnership with OCLC.
  • Update circulation status throughout the day.
  • Integrate catalog w/other tools through web services:
    • OpenSearch, RSS
  • Enrich catalog through external web services:
    • book jackets, reviews, etc. – Amazon/OCLC
  • Build modular shopping cart functionality.
  • Use Endeca to index local collections.

LITA 2006 National Forum

from the calhoun report
From the Calhoun report
  • "If one accepts the premise that library collections have value, then library leaders must move swiftly to establish the catalog within the framework of online information discovery systems of all kinds. Because it is catalog data that has made collections accessible over time, to fail to define a strategic future for library catalogs places in jeopardy the legacy of the world's library collections themselves. For this reason, the option of rejecting library catalogs is not considered in this report."

LITA 2006 National Forum

so what it s still just a catalog
So what? It’s still just a catalog

Serials

A&I / FT DBs

Metasearch

ERM Systems

GS

Guided Navigation

Digital Repositories

Catalog

Web

IR

Legacy ILS

LITA 2006 National Forum

strong to our finish
Strong to our finish

“Too often, we have an "eat your spinach" message about the library: come to the library, it is good for you.”

Lorcan Dempsey, OCLC

LITA 2006 National Forum

moving in a new direction
Moving in a new direction

OLD SEARCH MODEL

NEW SEARCH MODEL

LITA 2006 National Forum

things to read
Things to read
  • Rethinking how we provide bibliographic services for the University of California by the Bibliographic Services Task Force

http://libraries.universityofcalifornia.edu/sopag/BSTF/Final.pdf

  • The Changing nature of the catalog and its integration with other discovery tools by Karen Calhoun

http://www.loc.gov/catdir/calhoun-report-final.pdf

  • The Changing nature of the catalog and its integration with other discovery tools: A Critical review by Thomas Mann

http://www.guild2910.org/AFSCMECalhounReviewREV.pdf

  • A “Next Generation Catalog”, Eric Morgan

http://dewey.library.nd.edu/morgan/ngc/

  • Metadata Research Center, SILS

http://ils.unc.edu/mrc/

  • University of Rochester eXtensible Catalog

http://www.extensiblecatalog.info/

  • Toward a 21st Century Catalog, ITAL, Sept. 2006, Antelman, Lynema, and Pace

http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/endeca/publications/antelman_lynema_pace.pdf

LITA 2006 National Forum

thanks
Thanks
  • NCSU project site:
    • http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/endeca
  • Andrew K. Pace
    • Head, Information Technology
    • andrew_pace@ncsu.edu
  • Emily Lynema
    • Systems Librarian for Digital Projects
    • emily_lynema@ncsu.edu

LITA 2006 National Forum