2008-01-19Konferenzveröffentlichung DOI: 10.18452/1293
Help Users Search!
Prototyping an Online Help System for OPACs
Online Public Access Catalogues (OPACs) are not self-explanatory, and help searching them should be a standard feature. Access to library information should not be an adventure game. Unfortunately that goal is far away. Many surveys show user problems. Twenty-five percent of the users already fail at the operating system level, and another 37 % get a zero results. These users need help. Helping users search should be the goal and the right software tools are essential. In the first part of this paper, we describe what online help systems are. Spelling corrections, faceted-browsing, recommender-systems, context-sensitive-help or avatars are only a few examples of the broad field. Based on an analysis of German university libraries, we show then how they are currently used. The second part of the paper explains what stands behind the concept of useware-engineering and how we can apply it to prototype a companyindependent OPAC help system.
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