Posted by: eheino | July 26, 2014

Module 2: Tools and Systems

Exploring SCIS

I have been given access to SCIS (the online library catalogue that school libraries use to get their information about books) as part of ETL505, which is a bit exciting for me because finally I can understand what the TLs I know are talking about. So I have been enjoying myself exploring the database and seeing what information is available on each record. I was impressed to find that it is quite modern, there are links to social media sites, reviews, including the ability to write your own if you want, links to similar books and a tag cloud. All of these features mean that SCIS is well on its way to being a 4th generation catalogue. It is comforting to know that SCIS is up to date with the latest technologies, because Oasis certainly isn’t.

Interrogating EBSCOHost vs Library Catalogues

The main fields included in the records on EBSCOHost are:

  • Author
  • Source
  • Peer Reviewed
  • ISSN
  • Descriptors
  • Identifiers
  • Abstract
  • Number of References
  • Pages
  • Publication Date
  • Availability
  • Entry Date
  • Accession Number

The main fields included in the records for Wollongong Library are:

  • Main Title
  • Author
  • Imprint
  • Series Title
  • ISBN
  • Language
  • Average Rating
  • More Information
  • Other Editions
  • Similar Titles

These fields are relatively similar, but it is important to note that EBSCOHost is describing journal articles, whereas Wollongong Library is describing books. It would be helpful to include a summary/abstract in the library record to help patrons know if they want to read/borrow it or not, but I liked how it linked to other similar titles and editions, something that EBSCOHost was missing, that could be useful for students looking for articles on a particular topic.

Exploring Trove

I really like Trove for the history it brings together. I did a search on Corrimal (my local suburb) to see what kinds of results came up. It found:

  • 176 books, including the Corrimal Public School centenary book, a folded sheet detailing extensions to Corrimal East Public School, the records of Corrimal Pool committee and a book called Bellambi-Corrimal, between the mountains and the sea, published in 1980. I’d love to look at that book.
  • 744 Historical Photos
  • 305 Journals, Articles and Data Sets, including charge books from Corrimal Police Station and the journal of Corrimal Leagues Club
  • 154,365 newspaper articles
  • 75 maps
  • 16 audio files
  • 539 archived websites
  • 14 diaries, letters and archives 
  • 9 people and organisations and
  • 25 lists

This is just a snapshot of all the records that Trove has, I wish I had infinite time so I could explore chunks of its history, I’m sure it would be fascinating.

Search By Image

I didn’t know you could search Google Images by image, so this was new to me. You can search by one of your own images that you upload, or search by an image URL from the net. I was originally going to search by uploading, but it made me wonder what happens to your image once you upload it to google? I will have to explore this further. So instead I searched by URL an image of a cockatiel. It found similar images, as well as websites about cockatiels as well. Fascinating.

Image search on Trove 

My next task was to image search on Trove, so I kept with the same theme, and this time I searched Figtree, the suburb I went to school in. It came up with lots of historical images, including this one, which is one of my favourites, as it shows the old Fig Tree, and how much the Princes Highway has changed over time. 

 

Music Search

I had to compare Pandora, MP3.com and Spotify to find a song I like, and compare which was the easiest to use/find what I was looking for. I found them all equally easy to use, but I did use a relatively easy search term.

 

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