Thursday, September 27, 2007

November workshop: 'Is Library 2.0 a trivial pursuit?'

The next JIBS workshop will be held on the above theme on Wednesday, November 21 at the Diskus Centre in London. Speakers will include internet consultant Phil Bradley and Emma Tonkin, of UKOLN. Full details will be published on the JIBS website ( within the next couple of days.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

IEEE User Group meeting

As advertised on lis-scitech, this may be of interest to JIBS members:

"Ruth Wolfish, IEEE Client Services Manager, is organizing the first UK area
IEEE User Group meeting on Friday, November 16, 2007, at London South Bank
University at 103, Borough Road, London, SE1 0AA.

Our customers and interested information professionals will spend a day
with IEEE staff hearing about new features for 2008 - offering suggestions
on new developments prior to implementation, and networking with other IEEE
users. These meetings have taken place in North America in Michigan, N.
Carolina, Ontario, California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey and Maryland.
Attendees overwhelmingly liked having a voice in the future of IEEE Xplore,
and networking with other IEEE customers. As a global organization, IEEE
is committed to involving customers in Europe, Asia and Latin America as
well. Your organization has been selected to participate in this important
IEEE UK user group.

Plan to spend a full day with us (9:30 am to 4:30 pm), continental
breakfast and lunch will be provided. This is free of charge as IEEE
appreciates your input and spending the full day with us.

Directions and maps are at:

If you’d like to attend or you’d like more information please email Ruth
Wolfish at"

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

British Standards On line User Group news

The Jibs British Standards On line enhancement group has met again with BSI. BSI have been doing further work with their suppliers on the new search engine and interface. Many of the suggestions made at the previous meeting have been adopted and more Will be adopted in future releases. There will be a full Boolean search alternative in the new interface and the layout of the screens has been considerably improved. BSI are hoping to go live with the new service over the weekend of the 4 November for the University sector. They are aware that this is mid term but this should be such a massive improvement and is worth the pain of a mid term change. There should be screenshots and a demo of the new software available from the old site before the change over and the URL of the new site will also be made available before the switch. The migration to the new system will be a "hard" migration and the interface s will not run in parallel.

Roger Hines

Update on progress with Additional Authorised User Access

Following workshops held in December 2007 JISC Collections and the NESLi2 Negotiating Agent have been seeking publisher compliance with a variation to the definition of Authorised User in the model licence and for Additional Authorised User Licences.

Definition of an Authorised User

The variations are to include the following groups in the definition of Authorised User:

* Retired Members of Staff
* Teachers of an institution's students who are not employed by the institution.

Additional Authorised User Licences

Additionally, JISC Collections has been asking publishers to agree to Additional Authorised User Licences.

Further details can be found here.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Shibboleth is coming, Athens is on the way out

What does this mean for UK academic institutions ?

Shibboleth is the common name for a new method of authentication, which is expected to have significantly replaced the use of Athens by this time next year. To the user, Shibboleth functions exactly the same as AthensDA; the user is only required to login to their local institution, and then they will be able to access electronic resources to which they are entitled without a further login. In order to provide Shibboleth capability, institutions will have to install software known as a Shibboleth Identity Provider, and join the UK Access Management Federation.

Institutions may instead choose not to implement Shibboleth, and stay with Athens. However after July 2008 they will have to pay a fee to Eduserv to use Athens, as JISC will no longer be funding it. In order that their users can access resources protected purely by Shibboleth, such institutions will have to use the Athens-to-Shibboleth gateway, and they will also have to join the UK Access Management Federation.

Mimas is planning to only provide Shibboleth interfaces, and no longer Athens ones, for its authenticated services after July 2008, for the same funding reason. (Note that IP authentication will remain an option where it is currently provided by Mimas.)

Some services may still only provide Athens interfaces after July 2008, but institutions that have switched to Shibboleth will be able to access such services via the Shibboleth-to-Athens gateway (at no extra cost).

Therefore the important message for all UK academic institutions is: if you haven't done so already, join the UK Access Management Federation as soon as possible (it's free), and seriously consider implementing a Shibboleth Identity Provider. Decide what route you are going to take, and test it with as many resources as possible, well before July next year. Whichever route you take will have cost and/or resource implications, and you may need to inform service providers which route you have chosen. If you do nothing, your users may lose access to many electronic resources.

More information is available from the JISC and UK Access Management Federation websites.

Committee Members needed

There are two vacancies on the JIBS User Group Committee. It is a very active and interesting forum, working with JISC and with resource providers to bring about improvements in the online resources available to the JIBS community.

If you are working in a UK HE or FE Library and would like further information, or to volunteer to join the Committee, please contact Linda Humphreys:

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

OS MasterMap goes online for universities and colleges across Britain

Tens of thousands of students, staff and researchers at universities and further education colleges across Britain have online access to the country’s most advanced digital mapping from this month.

Ordnance Survey’s seamless representation of the detailed geography of Britain, OS MasterMap, is available to support learning and teaching at all institutions subscribing to the Digimap Ordnance Survey Collection service.

Digimap is an online mapping and data delivery facility funded by JISC, the Joint Information Systems Committee, and provided by the EDINA national data centre based at the University of Edinburgh.

Digimap enables users to download Ordnance Survey information – free at the point of use – into suitable application software on their own desktops. It has supported a vast range of studies, from archaeology to zoology, since its launch seven years ago.

The addition of OS MasterMap will potentially benefit nearly 32,000 registered Digimap users at 143 institutions, including more than 100 universities.

Further details can be found here.

National experiment about the impact of e-books on student learning and publishing sales

JISC has funded a collection of e-books that will be freely available to students in all UK universities.

The aim of the JISC national e-books observatory project is to gather much needed evidence:

* Evidence for publishers about the impact of e-books on traditional print sales to students
* Evidence for publishers about how to create exciting e-books that will engage the digital native
* Evidence for publishers and libraries about the pricing models for the future
* Evidence for libraries about how to promote the use of e-books

The e-books, chosen, include some of the most popular texts in Business and Management Studies, Medicine, Engineering and Media Studies.

JISC is funding CIBER1 to study just what happens when these books are freely available to students. How will they find them? Will they use them? Will the e-books impact on their learning? Will medical students behave differently to Media Studies students? Will the Business and Management students stop buying from the bookshops? Will Engineering students use the e-books more or less than the other groups?

Publishers are collaborating by providing these e-books via Ingram Digital Group’s MyiLibrary platform and the Books@Ovid platform. Funding by JISC enables these publishers to experiment in a managed environment and mitigates any risk of revenue loss.

Dr Hazel Woodward, University Librarian at Cranfield University, and chair of the JISC national e-books observatory project’s advisory board, said: ‘e-books have enormous potential as a resource for students. But it’s fair to say that that potential has so far been untapped. The project will we hope have a major impact on the e-book publishing market and in time on libraries across the UK as they struggle to keep up with demand for taught course texts. We hope that university libraries will all become involved in this innovative and exciting project as they as well as publishers have a great deal to gain.’

Robert Kimberley of Wolters Kluwer Health, one of the publishers to have submitted e-books for the project, welcomed its launch, saying: ‘We are delighted to be a part of this important project. Its commitment to increasing our understanding of the use of e-books is something that is especially welcome to us and Wolters Kluwer is looking forward to seeing its e-books used in such far-reaching and innovative ways and for the long-term benefit of libraries, users and publishers.’

James Gray at MyiLibrary said that this ‘information will provide a considerable evidence base to help inform our decisions about the construction of e-books, their promotion to the community, to suggest how disciplinary differences might impact on their use. We hope this evidence base will also be of immense importance to university lecturers and librarians in their efforts to make available core reading list e-books that support HE taught course students.’

For further information on the e-books now available to all universities, please go to


Monday, September 17, 2007

JISC Collections Consultation - Cambridge Companions Online

Response required by 15 October 2007

Cambridge Companions Online is the electronic version of the renowned Cambridge Companions series, covering literature, philosophy, classics, religion and cultural studies. Over 250 Companions offer lively, accessible introductions to major writers, artists, philosophers, topics and periods. Specially commissioned essays and access and functionality features enhance and compliment the book series.

In brief, users have access to: 250+ titles; 70,000 individual pages; 2,000 essays; chronologies; extensive bibliographies and guides to further reading.

Further details can be found here.