Archive for February 25, 2010

LibAnswers – Instant Message Notifications for New Questions/Comments

We rolled out the initial (beta) release of the LibAnswers/Instant Messanger integration, so please check it out. Log on to your main LibAnswers admin page (My Admin) and under System Settings tab select “IM Notifications” option. This is where you can setup the integration (you must have a valid GTalk account to do this, but you can use any IM aggregator, e.g. Meebo, Digsby, etc. to receive IM notifications).

Once you set this up, any time a new question, or a new comment is submitted to your LibAnswers system you will get an Instant Message notification (in addition to the email notification which is still there).

Let us know what you think – this is only the first release of this IM integration and we’d like to improve on it based on your feedback.

Building a Global LibGuides Community – 25 Countries and Counting

Every now and then we stop for moment, take a deep breath, and marvel at the amazing growth of our LibGuides Community – 1,100+ libraries and 17,000+ librarians creating useful guides, collaborating, and sharing content and ideas.

We knew we had many international libraries on board, but we recently realized we’re global in a real “global” way – 25 countries and counting: from dozens of libraries in our northern neighbor Canada, and just as many (if not more) in the Land Down Under – Australia, to South Africa, Sweden, Turkey, Egypt, Singapore, etc. The venerable Oxford University in UK is on board as well, as is the prestigious Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China.

We’re building a global community of libraries, with many opportunities to collaborate and share ideas and content on a global scale. It’s a beautiful thing, and it will only get better!

Speaking of collaboration, next week we are going to announce a big, bold, new LibGuides initiative/feature aimed at increasing and enhancing collaboration beyond individual libraries, so stay tuned – it will rock your world  – in a good way, of course 😉

As always, we’re here if any questions, ideas, suggestions, etc. pop up.

Introducing the “Best Of” LibGuides Website

We’re pleased to announce the http://bestof.libguides.com website – a collection of what we think are the shiniest examples of LibGuides across all our client institutions. The best part is that all content on the Best Of site can be freely reused and shared (that’s one of the rules of being featured on the site – guide owners must be willing to let others reuse and copy their awesomeness). No need to reinvent the wheel, and this way everybody benefits from the collective wisdom of the tens of thousands of librarians who create content in LibGuides.

We are also working on having official prizes, automatic idea submissions, voting, etc. so the Best Of site will only get better – this is just the beginning of great things to come. We will be adding new content every time we find something that makes us go “Wow, this is a great guide”  (we always contact the guide owner first, to get their permission to feature their work). If you have suggestions for what type of content you want to see there, or if you want to submit your or your colleagues’ guides please let us know, we’re all ears – support@springshare.com

So, there you have it – in a spirit of Valentine’s Day (a few days early but since Valentine’s is on Sunday we had to compromise a bit): Announcing the Sites We Love on the Day For Love – LibGuides Best Of, http://bestof.libguides.com. Check the site often because we will be adding new content every couple of weeks. You should also follow us on twitter – http://twitter.com/springshare – as we will be tweeting the Best Of updates/additions as well.

As always, please send us your suggestions, ideas, kudos 😉 – support@springshare.com.

“No Cover Art” Placeholder Images for Books

Even though you have options to use cover art for books from both Syndetics and Amazon, there are some titles for which there are no covers available. So, we created a few placeholder images you can use instead. This is useful if you have 3 or so books in your Books from the Catalog box, and two have covers while the 3rd one does not. In order for all items to align nicely within a box, it would be helpful to have an image to use for the 3rd cover. Here are the cover art images you can use for this, depending on which cover placeholder you like, and what size you need:

small
(94px)
Cover art url: http://lgimages.s3.amazonaws.com/nc-sm.gif
medium
(187px)
Cover art url: http://lgimages.s3.amazonaws.com/nc-md.gif
small
(94px)
Cover art url: http://lgimages.s3.amazonaws.com/gc-sm.gif
medium
(187px)
Cover art url: http://lgimages.s3.amazonaws.com/gc-md.gif

This is where you should insert one of the above urls, depending on which you want to use:

Montly LibGuides Stats – January 2010

The LibGuides Community started off 2010 with a bang, adding 49 new member libraries in the month of January!

Community Sites: 1072
Librarian Accounts: 16,947
Total Guides: 71,325
Total Pages: 455,024
Unique Visitors: 978,139
Page Views: 26.1 million

Facebook API Problems

We have had several reports that the LibGuides applications for Facebook have had intermittent problems over the last week or so.  Since the applications have not been changed in some time, it appears that the problem may be with the Facebook API.  This is further supported by the Facebook Developers Platform Live Status page at http://developers.facebook.com/live_status.php, which is currently showing an “API Latency”, which is the likely source of the error.

We will continue to monitor the status of the applications over the next few days, and hopefully the problem will resolve itself once the “latency” has been addressed by Facebook.  In the event that this does not repair the issue, we will address the problem on our end if at all possible.