a resource-discoveried-out librarian, earlier today

It’s been a while, but be assured we’ve all been very busy with resource discovery demos and every day more opportunities to see the systems in action seem to be arriving in my mailbox.  In fact, to coin one project member’s phrase, some of us are a bit ‘resource-discoveried-out’ this week!

Firstly, we took a look at what Ebsco Discovery Service could offer us.  As part of Ebsco’s ‘Complete Discovery Solution’ this system promises deep indexing and ‘quality not quantity’ in the results it delivers.   Partnerships exist with Ebsco and most of our major database/ejournal suppliers and project group members liked the familiarity of the interface and thought that our users would too (although we’ll be testing that assumption at a later stage).

Another box ticked was the wide range of search options available from quick to advanced in various configurations, which went down well with our subject librarians.

Here are some more thoughts from our Graduate Trainee –

“Well, if you’re familiar with and enjoy using the EBSCO platform, it would seem you’re on to a winner. The new EBSCO discovery service shares the same look and feel as its sibling, but incorporates a lot more utility. Whilst this is a positive from a familiarity perspective, the advantage is of course lost in the event that students have never seen an EBSCO platform before. So, how much significance should be given to the continuity in platform design for the discovery service? Well, in a truly non-committal way I’d argue it is an advantage, but a slight-one, and should certainly not be the be-all and end-all when it comes to decision making.

Ready for the clichés? On the one hand we have the ‘better the devil you know’ approach. We use EBSCO, our students use EBSCO, so why not build on this head-start by implementing the new discovery service which looks and feels the same, but is actually better? All well and good you might say, but what about the adage that ‘familiarity breeds contempt’? I’m sure everyone has an opinion on some of the quirks of EBSCO, and whilst I’m unable to determine whether these might have been ironed out, there’s surely no harm in considering a move away from the platform, familiar or otherwise. So, what’s the verdict? Well, I was quietly impressed during the demonstration and would certainly like to have a play around in the event that a trial could be arranged. “


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