30 Ideas


(“Pens” by bitospud)

On the day, we had 30 ideas (if you ignore my initial idea) submitted by delegates (see RSS feed). All of the ideas are released with a CC Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 licence. If you like one of the ideas, or if you want to turn it into a working prototype, please leave a comment or contact the delegate to let them know their idea is cool!

Just for completeness, here they all are (with a few typos corrected)…

Idea #1 – Dave Pattern (University of Huddersfield)…

Write a web page so that everyone can submit their ideas at “Mash Oop North” ;-)

Idea #2 – anonymous…

Visual representation of the information cycle from informal creation of ideas, breaking news, pulling in twitter search on topic, through blogs and comments on blogs, wiki articles, before newspaper articles, conference papers, posters and workshops. Move onto database search for journal articles and finally book search in a library catalogue. Pull in library tutorials on evaluating information from all these different sources and the way your keyword searching, tag search may need to change for the different formats

Idea #3 – Gill Hamilton (National Library of Scotland)…

To set the scene, two things:

1) I work in a closed stack library. When you order a book, men have to run about in miles of shelves to retrieve it for you, then send it up to the reading room for you to collect.

2) My library just opened a new Visitor Centre. It has TV screens in it and a Cafe.

My idea is very simple and fuelled by my love of cake and libraries. It is to mash together:

the data we have for how long it takes from point of request to arrival of book in reading room + approximately length of time to order coffee and cake at the visitors centre +TV schedule = recommendation to customer

i.e. Your book will take 30 mins to arrive. Why not have a coffee and watch The Ashes?

Could be further enhanced with menu from cafe or webcam showing how many slices of cake left (which is never many coz I’ve usually been there first).

Could also be even further enhanced by showing what current issues of journals have arrived in reading room (in case customer has been in coffee shop 4 times today already and is already full of cake)

Idea #4 – Owen Stephens (Open University)…

Creating a distributed catalogue and search. Idea is that if there is a web page per book, you don’t have to keep recataloguing the book but rather just aggregate the web pages that contain the descriptions of all your books.

Create a page or set of pages representing your library stock. The page would consist solely of URLs which point at information about the books you own – these could be Amazon pages, Open Library pages, Worldcat pages, LibraryThing pages etc. It wouldn’t matter you would simply be identifying a page that represented the book you had.

Then use a customised web crawler to crawl, using your list of URLs as a starting point and crawl each of the pages you are pointing at.

Index all the content you have crawled and make the index searchable

Idea #5 – Mandy Phillips (Edge Hill University)…

Reading lists – how effective are they?

Can we take data from our reading lists, from our circulation and usage stats, and reviews of items on that list from our students to give us a really rounded three way measurement of how effective reading lists are?

Not sure it would be popular – but hey!

Idea #6 – Mark Watmough (Edinburgh Napier University)…

It would be good if a user could, after logging in, download an .ical fie with their loan expiry dates, which they could then import into their calendar (outlook, google calendar, etc…) with a reminder – this would also allow users to sync with their ipod or other mobile device.

Idea #7 – Morgan Salisbury (De Montfort University)…

Getting most out of resources, now that budgets are super tight in libraries. One way is to promote trials/new resources via a wiki, that you can then hotlink to Yammer/Twitter. Value added books for your bucks, you librarians out there!

Idea #8 – Chris Keene (University of Sussex)…

Aggregate (only) open access full text items in repositories in to a single service which is searchable, browseable (by journal etc) and re-useable. (OAIster indexes far more so not so useful).

Idea #9 – Chris Keene (University of Sussex)…

Extract terms from items in a repository using OpenCalais make terms facets to find other related items or to aid searching

Idea #10 – Chris Langham (Birmingham City University)…

Following on from Dave’s talk about using the uses for borrower loan data.

A good idea would be to correlate both printed book usage and ejournal/ebook usage with module/degree marks. This would allow the suggested reading for new cohorts to be based to those on who previously had the best marks.

Stats which stated that students who got firsts, borrowed on average 36 books over 3 years and accessed 175 ejournal articles and 12 ebooks; could be used to encourage students to increase their use of library resources.

Idea #11 – Gillian Hanlon (Scottish Library and Information Council)…

After playing with Yahoo Pipes I’m thinking it would be a good idea to use this to draw together RSS feeds – whether library news, blogs or tweets – of all libraries in Scotland to bring this together to create one centralised location for this output. This would not only be an info source on all Scottish libraries but would allow libraries to see what’s going on/who’s using what elsewhere.

Idea #12 – anonymous…

The blog as the integration engine. Using WordPressMU as environment for providing interfaces to various search and browse services. i.e. interfaces to Intute search; institutional search; etc. Start off as national interface to interesting stuff. Allow plugins to be downloaded for institutional or personal use. This use of WordPress as a publishing engine also allows blog software to be installed behind the scenes.

Idea #13 – Nicole Harris (JISC)…

I’d like institutions to create URIs for users in the same way that twitter and facebook are now doing… so I’m not just n.harris@jisc.ac.uk but also http://jisc.ac.uk/nicoleharris. This then allows us to start thinking about the role of cataloguing, indexing and preserving ‘people’ as data as well as content as data. Good for OER, OpenData etc. etc.

Idea #14 – John Salter (University of Leeds)…

“Beat up your Books” (or if you’re a III customer, “Beat up your OPAC” ;o)
An audio-representation of your book collection or search realised in HTML5 using jQuery and an API (e.g. Google Books) to pull out lists of ISBNs.

Based around the HTML5DrumKit developed by Brian Arnold – a nice toy that needed some additional data to feed it into oblivion!

Idea #15 – Amy Hadfield (University of Aberystwyth)…

To combine usage statistics of books with floor plans to highlight areas of high usage helping collection development and also library design.

Idea #16 – Gaz Johnson (University of Leicester)…

A realtime national/international repository search mashup thing, showing not only the most regularly trending searches at any given time, but via Google Maps able to show locations too allowing people to find nodes of expertise where they might otherwise be unaware.

Idea #17 – Tanya Williamson (University of Huddersfield)…

Give users the opportunity to rate books at the point of return. Integrate this into the catalogue.

Idea #18 – Martin Philip (University of Sheffield)…

Bluetooth! Everyone has it on their phones and it is a quick, free, effective way of transferring data to devices that I don’t think libraries have fully explored yet. Could users borrow books or journal articles via bluetooth that maybe had an expiry date so they would never get fines. And much like some e-book licenses, multiple people could have access to a high demand book which would usually be located in the short loan collection and restricted to a handful of copies.

Bluetooth could also be used to transfer other data to peoples phones such as ‘how-to’ videos, some audio (audio tours), etc.

There could be ‘bluetooth points’ located around the library, maybe in busy areas, and/ or at library catalogue points?

The free element is key as other services that require users to access the internet on their mobile devices usually charge.

Idea #19 – Andrew Walsh (University of Huddersfield)…

Link library usage data (such as the data Dave P. has made available) with Bibliographic data from booksellers – so you can see popular books from other libraries to help before you buy.

For new books, link by subject terms to get “flavour” of likely issues, new editions could show issues of previous editions, etc…

Idea #20 – Paul Stainthorp (University of Lincoln)…

Use aggregated circulation usage data to create demotic unit/course reading lists that can be exported to reference management package.

Idea #21 – Sara Wingate Gray (University College London)…

Use the data from RFID tags (when there’s agreed ISO / data categories implementation LOL!!!) in public libraries. Combine this with a large public touchscreen or large plasma display etc. and grab the data from the tags which are currently circulating around the building at the present moment. These are then displayed on the public screens, as visual data, kind of like a radar, so the end product is that you, the user, wanders in, sees the screen, and can watch as Mr Darcy walks past Superman on the 2nd floor of your very own public library. Obviously, there’s a tonne of other applications in the sense of picking & choosing data from the tags – you could select authors, and so watch Jane Austen hanging out with PD James and Henning Mankell in the basement of the library, or pick a theme for the week and track all books of a specific LCC heading, or colour, or large print, or gee, like I said, the applications are endless. It’s about inspiring people. The key requirements are the implementation of RFID, and making sure that suppliers don’t strangle each other in private shenanigans, and that an agreed ISO is on the cards. Privacy should not be an issue for users, as I’d see the radar showing only splodges, if you like, for 10 secs or so, so you wouldn’t be able to directly track an actual individual moving with a book. You’d also be able to see the ‘pile-ups’ of moved books, and this would be useful perhaps for library staff – as in, you’d begin to understand the psychology of, say, your YP users more, for example, if you could see how they shifted between the areas of teen/adult/manga sections etc, and where and how items were moved, mis-shelved and left. Actually, now that I think about it, there is some serious cool cognitive/psych data that we could then collect from our users too…

This is actually one of the areas of my MPhil/PhD, so if anyone wants to join me in researching/developing this – please get in touch!

Idea #22 – Paul Stainthorp (University of Lincoln)…

The minimal library catalogue: each bib record consists solely of 17 characters: ISBN-13 plus number of copies in stock <=99. When an item is loaned, last 2 characters de-increment by 1. All bib data other than ISBN are pulled in from 3rd-party services. Doesn't do any stock or borrower management, but catalogue fits on a memory stick.

Idea #23 – Bethan Ruddock (Mimas)…

As a reader, I would love a truly integrated book discovery and location system.

Take data about books that I have read/want to read, (from somewhere like librarything), and recommend books to me based on that. Then plot the libraries where I can borrow those books based on my location (as worldcat can do). Give me information about availability and access requirements. Give me a map of all the local bookshops where I can buy the books. Tell me the price and availability. Link me to all the online retailers selling an e-version of the books, and tell me price and format. If it’s in the public domain and has been digitised, link me to all the digital copies. Finally, link me to a social network of people who own the books (back to librarything again?), and tell me who might be willing to lend books to me and how close to me they are. Make it as easy as possible for me to get the book I want/need through whichever route necessary.

Idea #24 – Lawrence Jones (Imperial College London)…

Linking search log data from LMS and e.g. Metalib with borrowing data (from LMS) and FT downloads (from SFX) to see relationship between search and use.

Idea #25 – Owen Smith (Open University)…

Link book titles from search to news items from various news sites.

Idea #26 – Ian McNaught (University of Huddersfield)…

Data visualisation of wikipedia article revisions. Visualisation of how many edits per day, how many editors involved, what size of changes takes place and reasons for edits (e.g. biased point of view, unreliable sources etc).

Too many people think wikipedia is just the article that you see, and they judge it on the quality of that. A mashup such as the one I describe would give a more thorough view of what wikipedia actually has to offer.

Idea #27 – Mike Ellis (Eduserv)…

I’ve started building a simple bookmarklet for books(!).

The idea is this would be a lightweight browser-based bookmarklet. If you were on any web page (library search results, amazon, blog, review, wherever) and that page mentioned a book (or books), the service would give you a contextual popup for that book (or books!).

Examples of what could be delivered into the popup include:

- book cover
- current price at Amazon / wherever
- customer reviews gathered from around the web
- “save to your”…delicious / amazon wishlist / netvibes account / etc
- “your friends also liked” functionality
- additional links and information (wikipedia, Open Calais, etc) generated from on-page or behind the scenes data

The service would be very easy to code – initially it could just look for ISBN numbers (I have this working!), easy to use (you drag onto your bookmark bar to create a bookmarklet), and would add real value, bringing together book references from across the web.

Idea #28 – Julian Cheal (UKOLN)…

Social Book/DVD/Music/etc Search.

OK so you’re searching whatever to see what books are in your local library, and you get some results, fine. The books are there you can borrow them, but it’s not very exciting.

How about you search for a book and not only do you get the results from your local library, you also get results from your friends collections.

The way this works is say you searched for “Harry Potter” the results come up like this:

1) Local library 5 copies all bloody taken
2) Amazon unlimited copies costs lots of money to buy
3) Your mate he has a copy they’ve read it, it’s just on the shelf gathering dust. Why not lend that one.

Tada the system works. Not only can you search/borrow/lend books/dvds/etc from local libraries, buy from amazon, borrow from friends. You can also leave reviews.

So once I’ve borrowed “Harry Potter” from any of the above sources I can leave a textual review/star rating etc of that item, even though you don’t own it.

You can then use these reviews etc to help you choice what to lend or is it borrow??

Idea #29 – Joss Winn (University of Lincoln)…

A Multi-OPAC platform using WordPress MU, Scriblio and Triplify.

WordPress Multi User scales to millions of sites. Scriblio is a suite of WordPress plugins that easily imports your OPAC into the WordPress environment. Each WordPress site could be a Scriblio/OPAC instance that is individually branded and available under the institution’s own domain name. Each Scriblio/OPAC instance would form part of an aggregated whole that is browsable and searchable across all OPACs and each OPAC also remains independently searchable and browsable. Scriblio embellishes an OPAC catalogue with additional data harvested from Amazon and other APIs. Scriblio provides a ‘Web 2.0′ interface to your OPAC with very little effort. Because the platform is WordPress, RSS/Atom/RDF feeds are available from every data endpoint and there is an ecosystem of WordPress extensions to further extend the platform.

Triplify is a small web application that exposes a relational database as RDF semantic data. Each OPAC and the platform as a whole could be exposed as RDF and hosted on a platform like Talis Commons.

WPMU, Scriblio and Triplify are already used in production environments. To show a robust, working demonstration of this idea, this project requires a relatively small amount of dedicated development effort to further improve Scriblio and create a Triplify configuration for the platform. The benefits would be an easy way for institutions to join a ‘union catalogue’ where they retain control of their OPAC; improve their OPAC discovery experience, extend their OPAC with the benefits of the large WordPress developer ecosystem and contribute to the semantic web and linked data.

Idea #30 – Eleanor O’Brien (University College London)…

Information Literacy Training Sessions calendar.

List of library training sessions on webpage. Links to export training dates to outlook/google calendar etc to create reminders and increase participation. Links to google maps for locations in multi-campus or multi-branch context. Links to slideshare for slides to look at before, after or instead of attending session.

This is an idea…I have no idea of its feasibility!

Idea #31 – Andrew Walsh (University of Huddersfield)…

Use wifi or bluetooth triangulation to geolocate within a library – interpose a layer of extra information onto view through the camera on a mobile device to provide an augmented reality tour / set of information

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~ by Dave Pattern on 10/July/2009.

11 Responses to “30 Ideas”

  1. [...] part of the event, delegates submitted ideas to the ideas bank for various different library mash-ups. I was interested to see how many of these were directly [...]

  2. Idea # 4 – sounds like the Google Books “My Library” feature + a £50 barcode scanner could be used for this one.

  3. Idea # 8 – quote: _”Aggregate (only) open access full text items … into a single service which is searchable, browseable”_

    It’s here. http://www.jurn.org/

  4. [...] Ideas [web link]Mashed Library UK 2009 (10/Jul/2009)“…idea #23 bethan ruddock mimas as a reader [...]

  5. Idea 6: great one. I use several libraries and put reminders to myself in iCal when I need to return/renew. All has to be done by hand. Why oh why can’t it be automated?

    • Thanks very much – wish you were one of the judges Tom! :) Yeah, I think it just makes sense. Unfortunately it seems that to be able to create these pesky ical files automatically I would need PHP (or other dynamic scripting) knowledge…I have none!

  6. [...] For those interested in Library Mashup ideas, check out these 30 ideas sourced from attendees at the Mashed Library event held in the UK a couple of weeks [...]

  7. [...] up with discussing ideas and networking, and of course the presentation of awards for the best ideas submitted throughout the day. A very well done to everyone – some really interesting ideas came [...]

  8. [...] the end of the afternoon prizes were awarded – you can see the list of excellent ideas on the mashlib09 blog, and I do recommend taking a look as there’s things there that should definitely get [...]

  9. Idea #21….I love it! And wouldn’t it be fun to give each character/author an avatar as well?

  10. […] part of the event, delegates submitted ideas to the ideas bank for various different library mash-ups. I was interested to see how many of these were directly […]

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