ArchivesSpace Public User Interface (PUI) Workgroup

Yale is continuing to develop the ArchivesSpace PUI and is preparing for a soft-launch of the new archives and special collections discovery service this Spring. This will create the foundation for the migration from YFAD to the Public User Interface. The ArchivesSpace PUI (public user interface) blog keeps staff informed of the significant work the project team and its workgroups are doing.

Continue Reading ArchivesSpace Public User Interface (PUI) Workgroup

Voyager Update: Module Testing Results

As you may know, Yale University Library is upgrading its Voyager Integrated Library System (ILS) from 8.1 to 10.0 this coming month. The upgrade from Voyager 8.1 to 10.0 introduces new features and fixes in all modules and will enable the reevaluation of workflows across units to realize the benefits of the newer software version. A great deal of planning and effort has gone into this upgrade to insure the smooth transition to Voyager 10.0 over the semester break. 
The Voyager ILS comprises three primary modules: acquisitions, cataloging, and circulation. The system also contains a public user interface known as the Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC).  Additionally, there are tools and modules used by specific staff within the library for specific administrative functions, inlcuding system administration and bulk data processing. The Voyager Upgrade team is working to test each module for new features and to confirm uninterrupted workflow.
The Voyager Upgrade site is the place to find out about project announcements and project development.  You can also subscribe to get Voyager updates in your inbox.  There are two new Voyager Upgrade Blog posts. The first post is about Cataloging and Authorities Testing Results by Patricia Thurston, Voyager User Group Chair and Cataloging Testing Group Lead. The post details the collaborative work the Cataloging & Authorities testers did with the Acquisitions Testing Group, to insure our current workflows could continue. They tested the cataloging module under the assumption of keeping current workflows, until after implementation. Voyager 10 has significant enhancements that can be explored later. Read more about results of their work.
The second post is about the Acquisitions Module Testing Results by Diane Napert, Acquisitions Testing Group Lead. The post chronicles the work the Acquisitions Testing Group did to verify current workflows with the acquisitions module. They discovered two bugs and some missing workflow settings in the test version of Voyager 10. Read more about the results of their work.

Please feel free to reach out via email directly to Patricia Thurston, Voyager User Group Chair,  at  or  Steelsen Smith, Project Manager for Upgrade, at with any comments, questions, or concerns.

Quicksearch Upgrade Completed

Quicksearch was successfully upgraded on September 6, 2017!

The upgrade included two major new features: Advanced Search and the new Database list. Several small but useful new features were also added. Here are a few new features that you may not have noticed yet:

  • Hathi Trust links to digital versions of titles in Orbis or Morris are now available. The link text indicates whether full text is available or if Hathi only provides access to a citation. The Hathi display also includes information about the institution that owns the original. See the screenshot below or view an example in Quicksearch.

Hathi Trust links to digital versions of titles in Orbis or Morris are now available.

  • You can now click on Local Subject headings to find like titles, just as you can with LCSH and MESH headings.

• You can now click on Local Subject headings to find like titles

  • You can also search sub-collections in a single location using Advanced Search. Choose one Location in the “Limit results by section,” then select “Location” from the drop-down menu next to the search box on the right. NOTE: You will need to know the sub-collection name in order for this to work. For example:

  • The upgrade also includes an easily accessible, stable link to the individual record in the ‘Bookmark As’ field, making it easier to share a direct link to a record with colleagues, students, faculty, and researchers. Look for this stable link at the bottom of each Books+ record.

• The upgrade also includes an easily accessible, stable link to individual record in the Bookmark As field


  • Numbered results makes it easier to discuss a result page with colleagues or patrons. Check boxes for emailing results or adding citations to your Saved list have been moved to the left next to result numbers in order to enhance usability.

• Numbered results makes it easier to discuss a result page with colleagues or patrons.


The Quicksearch Advisory Group would like to hear what you think about these and other new features in the upgrade.  We’d like to hear any and all feedback, including bug reports and change suggestions.

Thanks again to all of the people who helped with the upgrade, particularly the members of the Quicksearch Technical Implementation Team and the Quicksearch Advisory Group.

Suzanne Lovejoy and Kalee Sprague, co-chairs of the Quicksearch Advisory Group

Quicksearch Advisory Group members: Lori Bronars, Ellen Cordes, Gwyneth Crowley, Moira Fitzgerald, Lindsay King, Colin McCaffrey, John Nann, Youn Noh, Angela Sidman, Tim Young

Update on ArchivesSpace PUI

Many of you may be familiar with YFAD, the Yale Finding Aids Database. The Library developed YFAD locally several years ago, and the system is showing its age. After a few years of intense technical development, a new discovery interface for ArchivesSpace is available for implementation. Yale implemented ArchivesSpace as an archival management tool for staff several years ago, and with it for the first time, a standard tool used across almost all libraries, museums, and galleries on campus with archival materials. The extension of the ArchivesSpace platform to include a public user interface will provide new opportunities for systems integration, more seamless staff workflows, and an improved user experience for researchers.

The project at Yale to implement the ArchivesSpace discovery had a three month preplanning process, involving the project sponsors and administrative stakeholders. Melissa Wisner, Senior Systems Librarian in Library IT, serves as the Project Manager. Mark Custer, Archivist and Metadata Coordinator at Beinecke, serves as an ex officio member due to his role as Project Manager for the technical development and design phase. The project is sponsored by E.C. Schroeder, Director of Beinecke Library and Associate University Librarian, and Chris Weideman, Director of the Department of Manuscripts and Archives, and has a roster of approximately 30 staff members, and a larger number of stakeholders.

There is significant work to accomplish along with preparations for changes before the debut of the new service to users. The plan is to begin with a soft-rollout of the new discovery interface, while continuing to keep YFAD available. There will be a period when both tools are available through the Library website as final adjustments are made for the transition from YFAD to ArchivesSpace. As of today, the project team anticipates an early 2018 soft-launch.

The following working groups comprise the ArchivesSpace project team:

  • Public User Interface Enhancements & Ideas, led by Alison Clemens
  • Data Cleanup & Enhancement, led by Alicia Detelich and Christy Tomecek
  • Staff Training & Documentation, led by Emily DiLeo
  • Technical Integrations, led by Steve Wieda
  • Usability & Accessibility, led by Jenn Nolte
  • Marketing & Branding, led by Mike Morand

Several different tools to organize and manage the work and communication of the project are being used: Asana for the project plan, a Slack channel for day-to-day project team communication, Google Drive for file sharing, GitHub, and the local Yale ArchivesSpace email distribution list. Monthly updates on progress will be sent to Yulib. Project team members will post details about the project and aspects of project management to the Yale ArchivesSpace blog on a regular basis.

The monthly All Project Member/Stakeholder meetings are open to everyone with an interest in the new user interface, special collections, or an interest in teaching users about finding aids, archives, and special collections at Yale. The meeting for October is Tuesday Oct. 31 in Bass Library L01 & L02 from 3-4pm.

For more information about the ArchivesSpace project, visit the YAMS LibGuide or the ArchivesSpace blog. This month’s post by Melissa Wisner focuses on project management: Implementing the ArchivesSpace PUI: A Before Action Review.

Desktop Video Conferencing

Last year, a pilot project was conducted to evaluate desktop video conferencing solutions for YUL.  The pilot has been completed and based on the selection criteria and the experiences of pilot participants, Zoom Video Conferencing is the clear choice.  For those of you who participated in the pilot project, thank you.  Thanks also to Beatrice Richardson for leading the pilot and Library IT staff for providing support.

A project to implement Zoom for desktop video conferencing on YUL staff computers has been initiated. Library IT will soon acquire licenses and configure Zoom Video Conferencing services.  In the coming months equipment will be provided as needed (camera & headsets) for staff computers.  The project is expected to be completed by mid-fall, with some services available sooner for staff who already have equipment in place.

While the Zoom license may also be used in some conference rooms and streaming scenarios, there are other Library IT initiatives underway to identify solutions for lecture-capture and connected conference rooms.  Equipment for conference rooms and lecture halls will be outside the scope of this project focused on the deployment Zoom for desktop video conferencing.

From the entire Library IT team, we wholeheartedly thank everyone who participated in the pilot.  A summary report from the pilot is here:

If you have any further questions about the pilot, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Beatrice or Dale.

Hydra Connect 2016

Hydra Project
This week, from October 3rd to October 6th, Boston Public Library hosted the Hydra Connect 2016 conference. Project Hydra is a repository solution managing components involved in storing and providing access to digital content. Project Hydra can be described in broad terms as the confluence of community and collaboration made manifest in the development of open source software, and the conference brought together close to 200 people from institutions across the globe to connect. Seven people attended from Yale Library, Mike Friscia, Anju Meenattoor, Lakeisha Robinson, George Ouellette, Youn Noh, Osman Din, and Eric James.

The conference was organized as workshops on Monday, a plenary session Tuesday morning, a poster session Tuesday afternoon, multi-tracked presentations/panels/lightning talks Wednesday, and breakout sessions Thursday. Topics were varied but commonly themed. There was discussion of service management and project management taking into consideration issues such as adoption, migration, and upgrade paths. There was a focus on the learning, sharing and best practices of the technology itself – the software stack, infrastructure, deployment, and monitoring. Much of the presentation centered around the community efforts driving base applications such as the Sufia institutional repository, the Avalon AV system, and the Fedora repository. Content specific challenges were addressed from both an an abstract modeling perspective to the unique considerations of GIS assets, newspapers, images, AV materials, and research data, through frameworks such as the PCDM/hydra works and the IIIF specifications.

The enthusiasm was palpable and the project hydra motto “if you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together” was evident, but in many ways there what prevailed was a constant tension between customization and consolidation – the need for diverse institutions to implement a variety of special features while simultaneously developing towards an easily maintainable common core. In any case the takeaways from the conference will influence the direction of services provided by the Yale Library longterm, from the digital collections interface FindIT, the Yale instance of the AV Avalon Platform, to the unified search interface Quicksearch.



Attending Ivies+ Discovery Day: July 25th 2016 at MIT

MIT Libraries rotunda
MIT Libraries rotunda

The second annual Ivies+ Discovery Day took place at MIT in Cambridge, MA on July 25th 2016. Representatives from many of the Ivies+ libraries attended, including four librarians from Yale: Jenn Nolte, Sarah Tudesco, Angela Sidman and Kalee Sprague.

The day started off with a keynote address on discovery and serendipity from MIT Libraries Director Chris Bourg. Following that, Laura Morse from Harvard presented on updates from the Open Discovery Initiative, a NISO committee of which she is co-chair.

The later part of the morning then shifted into a ’round robin’ of 5 minute demonstrations followed by 5 minutes of Q&A  from eleven Ivies+ institutions. Each institution’s demo focused on their own particular discovery landscape. Some were at the beginning stages of implementation, others showcased the enhancements they’ve rolled out since the first Ivies+ Discovery Day in April 2015. Angela Sidman and Jenn Nolte demonstrated Yale’s unified discovery service, Quicksearch– which wasn’t even publicly available at Discovery Day last year!

After a lunch break, 2 consecutive breakout sessions followed with simultaneous presentations. The topics and slides for these are up on the Ivies+ Discovery Day website. Of particular note were presentations on discovery-related work at Yale University Library:

The path to Unified Discovery at Yale: Past, Present and Future (Jenn Nolte)
Discovery @ Yale: A Google Analytics Story (Sarah Tudesco)

The day ended with a fun and interactive session involving all attendees, with the goal of articulating and prioritizing collaborative efforts among Ivies+ institutions with regard to discovery. Attendees were given sticky notes to write down ideas for collaboration, and each attendee also received five stickers to vote on the ideas they liked the most. The notes from that exercise are also linked on the Ivies+ Discovery Day website.

The second Ivies+ Discovery Day was fast-moving, full of great information and great colleagues from across the Ivies+ universe. We attendees from Yale were very grateful for the excellent job our colleagues at MIT did in organizing the event, and look forward to Ivies+ Discovery Day 2017!

LIT and partners Tech Talk | Wednesday September 21st 2016

On Wednesday September 21st, from 3pm-4pm in Bass L01, join Library IT and partners in our monthly discussion of tech-related projects around the Library and beyond.

Our tentative agenda includes:

  • Hathi Trust (Robert Klingenberger)
  • YUL and Accessibility (Kalee Sprague and Tracy MacMath)
  • Service Now (Beatrice Richardson)
  • Avalon for Music Library (Cindy Greenspun, George Ouellette and Jonathan Manton)

For those who cannot join us in person, the session will be streamed via Adobe Connect: [sign in as a guest]

Slides and recordings of the Tech Talk sessions will be archived in

Please remember: any Library staff is welcome to present at the Tech Talks! Please send topic suggestions to Jenn  Nolte or anyone else in Library IT.

See you there!

New Quicksearch Advisory Group

The Quicksearch Advisory Group was formed this July to guide and promote the ongoing operation and development of Quicksearch.  The group will act on behalf of all Quicksearch stakeholders by defining and prioritizing the ongoing development, configuration, integration, and support of this important service.

Committee members include: Gwenyth Crowley, Ellen Cordes, Moira Fitzgerald, Emily Horning, Jordan Jefferson, Suzanne Lovejoy (co-chair), Youn Noh, Danielle Ray, Angela Sidman, Laura Sider, and Kalee Sprague (co-chair).

Minutes for our meetings will be posted on the Quicksearch blog at

Everyone is welcome to contact the committee with feedback, either by contacting committee members directly,  or through the ‘Feedback’ link in the Quicksearch header and footer.