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Technical Reports

University of Texas at Austin
Report to the Digital Library Federation
July 7, 2001


  • Collections, Services, and Systems
  • Projects and Programs

    I. Collections, Services, and Systems

    A. Collections

    1. General

      New UT Library Online (UTLOL): Update
      Under the auspices of an Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) National Leadership Grant, the General Libraries and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science (GSLIS) completed a research and demonstration project, which began December 1999, including a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the usability of UT Library Online. The Grant, totaling $224,512, also supported the development of a set of tools and guidelines that libraries, museums, and other information agencies can use to improve the utility of their sites. To date, UTLOL has received 68 million hits in 2001.

    2. Digital Surrogate Collections

      Mission Drawings: Update
      Descriptive metadata has been completed; user and search interfaces are under construction.

      Southwestern Historical Quarterly: Update
      APEX Data Services, Inc., Herndon, Va., is in the process of completing the rekeying and marking up the journal's text and digitizing associated images.

      Photographs from the George Isadore Sánchez Papers: Update
      User and search interfaces are being completed.

      Third Geological Survey of Texas: Update
      The digitization component has been completed, with the exception of retakes for select images. An OCR component has commenced.

    B. Services

    Interlibrary Services (ILS) E-Docs: Update
    ILS E-Docs has gone live, allowing patrons to retrieve ILS photocopy requests from the Web.

    E-Reserves Project Live: Update
    In fall 2000, the General Libraries Undergraduate Library piloted ERes, a product of Docutek Information Systems. ERes has recently been implemented throughout the General Libraries for text and audio documents.

    Help Desk
    Since winter 2001, DLSD has been testing providing weekend hours for the division's technical Help Desk. Randy Rocha works on the desk ten hours each weekend, providing telephone and e-mail service.

    C. Systems

    Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund Board proposal: Update
    The General Libraries will submit in July a non-competitive grant to Texas' Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund Board for $3/4 million to support the library's technical infrastructure.

    The following enhancements were made in winter/spring 2001:

    • Purchased a NetApps Filer with two terabytes of storage.
    • Moving development platform from Compaq Digital UNIX to SUN.

    • Upgraded Veritas NB software to version 3.4.

    • Purchased a DLT 8 tape drive to create backup tapes.

    II. Projects and Programs

    A. Projects

    TARO (Texas Archival Resources Online): Update
    Phase I has been completed, during which 50,000 pages of finding aids were converted. Grant funding is presently being sought for Phase II of the project, which proposes to incorporate digital surrogates of many types of collection materials, including images of documents and objects, sound files, and moving images. Phase II will expand the number of participating Texas institutions.

    Handbook of Texas Online: Update
    DLSD hired a full-time systems analyst, Eric Hahn, to maintain and upgrade the HTO.

    TxTell: Update
    TxTell continues to grow with new content.

    Project Tracker
    DLSD has created and networked a FileMaker Pro database to track the progress of digital conversion projects.

    Quality Assurance Program
    In response to the growing need for increased quality assurance of digital products received from vendors and of in-house web work, DLSD hired a half-time assistant, Marlan Green, to be responsible for a variety of quality assurance operations. During his weekend Help Desk hours and with an additional ten hours during the week, Randy Rocha also assists with quality assurance and OCR conversion.

    B. Programs

    Distance Learning
    Digital Library Services hired Alexia Thompson-Young as the first Distance Learning Librarian for the General Libraries in winter 2001. In tandem with other staff in the Division, she is responsible for the UT System's electronic resources licensing and billing, and serves as part of a newly established three-member team of librarians who are dedicated to library services for distance learners for UT Austin and the UT System (15 component campuses). Team members include Ms. Thompson-Young, Jennifer Flaxbart, General Libraries Communication Bibliographer/Off-Campus Library Services Coordinator (hired in winter 2001 and reporting to the General Libraries Reference Services Division), and Meredith Ault, the first UT System Telecampus Librarian, also hired winter 2001. Ms. Ault's office is located in Digital Library Services, where she coordinates her work to enhance existing and establish new services for Telecampus distance learners.

    The distance learning team has created a web site and listserv, Offcamp, for UT System distance learning contacts, who serve as part of the new Task Force on Distance Learning Library Services.

    The General Libraries is contracting with the Texas State Library to continue the provision of operational management services for the TexShare web site, including telecommunications, system administration, application software, content mark-up, routine data updates and maintenance activities. In this new contract, in addition to the information support services it has provided since 1995, DLSD will target TexShare's 500+ public libraries to 1) provide unique, individualized access to TexShare databases for libraries unable to access the databases by static IP number; 2) provide remote access to TexShare databases for libraires that are not able to authenticate remote users themselves; and 3) allow TexShare libraries that do not have static IP numbers to generate and collect database use statistics.

    Please send comments or suggestions.
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