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If you haven’t checked out the new Library Website recently, you should definitely visit and have a look around. The new site will become the Stanford Libraries default homepage in early September, in time for the start of Fall Quarter 2012.

The Online Experience Group has been steadily adding content to the site, with additional content added every week.
Highlights include:

· The “Using the Library” section of the site has plenty of fresh, user-tested content on topics such as “Borrow, Renew, Return” and “Connecting from Off-Campus”.
· Basic information pages for each of the branch and coordinate libraries with current hours, location, and accessibility information.
· Descriptions of over 50 Collections and 13 Projects.
· People pages for Subject Specialists and other staff under the About drop-down menu.
· Initial examples of Topic Guides, with many more to be developed over the summer.

All Stanford Libraries staff are encouraged to review the site and send Feedback.
We will post updates here of new content added each week.

We're ready to start training for creating content on the new website!

You are invited to sign up for the first round of training on Tuesday, June 26; Wednesday, June 27; Monday, July 9; or Tuesday, July 10 all at 1:30 pm. You can sign up through Coursework for one of these hands-on sessions at: https://coursework.stanford.edu/portal/site/LibraryWebsiteTraining. Once you've joined the site, click on the sign up link in the lefthand menu. This training is especially IMPORTANT for all subject specialists.

This initial training will last 60-90 minutes, and will cover two main topics:
An overview of the Content Creation Guide for the new library site
Hands-on creation of a "people" page.

And of course, we'll leave plenty of time for Q&A as well!

The Web Redesign Team is working hard on the new website, especially the content creation environment and tools. We hope you are working on your web content, too--developing, editing, and refining the content you plan to publish on the new website’s subject guides, branch pages, and project pages.

We recommended some guidelines for Writing for the Web earlier to help you evaluate the clarity of your content’s message. But what about images, videos, or attached documents on your pages? Here are some guidelines to consider as you look at your content.

Guidelines for uploading documents to the library web environment

When moving content to the new website, you will need to follow the same guidelines established for capturing and sharing Everyday Electronic Materials (EEMs):

“In general, capturing and redistributing digital material is understood to be an act of distribution, which is an exclusive right of the copyright owner. Therefore, SULAIR must seek permission from the rights holder, unless the work is in the public domain or explicitly licensed for redistribution."

When in doubt, link to documents instead of uploading them.

Between January and March of this year the web redesign project took a small break in full-time engineering to focus attention on design work, bug fixing, user testing, and analyzing user feedback. The outcomes of this work have been positive, as we've learned a great deal from students, faculty and staff about how they would use the new site and whether or not it will help them successfully complete their most important tasks.  Many small and large improvements to librarypreview.stanford.edu have already been made, and continue to be added.

We have also completed initial design work on updated Subject Guide and Branch library templates.  Click the thumbnails below to see full-screen versions of these designs.

Branch Library Template

 

 Subject Guide Template

Starting in April, the web development team and Chapter Three have resumed full-scale development efforts to build out the subject guides and branch templates.  They are also investing considerable effort in making the web authoring experience both simple and feature-rich. 

Expect more frequent updates here in April, May and June as progress is sure to accelerate. 

The Online Experience Group is increasing its focus on enabling content creators to author clear, concise content for the new website. While an exact date is not yet set, technical developments are progressing at a pace that will soon allow content creators to access the site, update existing content and build new pages. In the spirit of laying “fresh eyes” on current content and developing good habits for continual content review and updating, we recommend the following e-resources on writing effective web content. It's never too early to review and revise content intended for the new site.

Redish, Janice (Ginny). Letting go of the words: writing Web content that works

Ginny Redish’s website also contains good information on writing fo the Web.

The US Government’s Plain Language website may sound like an oxymoron, but it provides guidelines for and examples of good, plain writing for a mass audience.

ALSO: The Online Experience Group is looking for an amateur photographer to join the Image Group. Please contact Mike Nack (mnack@stanford.edu) to learn more and to express your interest.

The Online Experience Group has been working hard on a proposed new design for subject guides. Subject guides are envisioned as tools to help users navigate a broad or specific subject area and to identify key SULAIR specialists.

We carefully considered how the website redesign would impact the many and varied subject guides. Based on user studies and subject specialist interviews, the proposed subject guide model is intended to provide maximum flexibility for providing content within a visually consistent, branded framework; and to support maximum ease in content creation, organization, and maintenance. The guide model strives for a simple, intuitive design, with support for media, automatic feeds, and custom design within a standard framework.

Six personas (user categories) were developed, each with specific needs. The new design intends to meet the needs of each of these user types:

Hello all!

This is just a friendly reminder that the new SULAIR website preview is available for your viewing pleasure! We have begun receiving valuable comments which will inform our continued building-out of the site. We encourage the Stanford community to continue sending in requests, comments, complaints, questions, and praise. The feedback link may also be accessed on the preview site. Happy exploring!

The new library website had a table at the Library Open House, at which we did some light-weight testing and previewed a live test site to visitors. It was a big success in that the table received approximately 50 visitors, 21 of which participated in the live test. The breakdown of testers included:

  • 10 undergraduates
  • 4 graduate/professional school
  • 3 lecturers/instructors/visiting scholars
  • 2 library staff
  • 2 other SU staff

Testers were directed to a laptop and asked to perform 3 to 5 common website tasks. Charles Kerns introduced the tasks and recorded whether or not it was successfully completed. All tests were recorded using Camtasia so we can replay them as videos and analyse how testers navigated the site to accomplish common tasks. The following is a list of some of the tasks we tested:

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