The new personalised Copac will be made available during August 2009. Thank-you to the many people who have taken the time to send comments and requests relating to the Beta interfaces. We’ve had some really useful feedback and we’ll be following up many of the comments both before the release and over subsequent months.
We are beginning a major redevelopment of the Copac National, Academic, and Specialist library catalogue service. The first stage of this work will introduce a login version of Copac with a range of new personalised facilities. Alongside this we will retain an open-access version of Copac.
Building on the recent Copac Beta trial, we have two new Copac Beta trial interfaces.
Personalised Copac, as seen in the beta trial, now has a new addition in the form of ‘my local library’ search, which allows members of some universities to search their own library catalogue alongside Copac, giving a single result set. This requires you to login to Copac.
The new standard Copac is a streamlined service which allows you to search and export records without logging in to the personalised Copac. It also includes a new journal table-of-contents display (where available).
Both these interfaces can be accessed at http://beta.copac.ac.uk/, and the trial will be running until 26th July.
There is a very short feedback questionnaire for each interface. We would appreciate it if you could fill in the questionnaire, or just email the Copac helpdesk (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any comments you may have.
There is now a Beta version of the Copac interface available for trial at http://beta.copac.ac.uk/.
We’re working towards making Copac a more personalised research tool and we’d love to have your feedback on the current range of developments. Try out the Beta version of Copac, explore the new features, then fill in a brief questionnaire to give us your views about the changes so far. In appreciation we’ll put your name in a hat to win a £35 Amazon voucher. The Beta interface will be available for comment until May 29th.
Note: Access to the Beta version of Copac is currently restricted to members of UK academic institutions, you will need to login with your university/college username (or Athens username). The developments will be made more widely available in the future and there will continue to be a free access version of Copac available to everyone.
The Copac national, academic, and special library catalogue now includes links to documents in Google Book Search. Where a record contains an ISBN a link appears on the right of the Full record display and will take one of three forms:
- Google Full View: this link takes you to an online copy of the book.
- Google Preview: this allows you to see a limited number of pages from the book.
- Google Book Search: most links will be in this form. These links don’t offer a view of the book itself, but in some cases there will be options such as links to web sites mentioning the book, links to other works that reference the book etc.
Find out more about how the linking is done from:
Inside Google Book Search: Preview books anywhere with the new Google Book Search API
The English Short Title Catalogue (ESTC) is again available through Copac after some work at the British Library. You will now be seeing ESTC records in your Copac search results. Unfortunately, searches that find a large number of records on ESTC can be slow and will require patience. This should affect only a small proportion of searches, but if you are having particular difficulties let us know so we are aware of the extent of the problem.
We have released a new version of Copac. The main change is that your searches are now carried out both on Copac and on the English Short Title Catalogue (ESTC) at the British Library. The records retrieved from ESTC are merged into a single result set with the results from the Copac database. In the Copac ‘Main search’ screen ESTC is included in the ‘Libraries’ list field. Thus it is possible to restrict a search to ESTC alone, or to combine it with one or more other libraries eg. ESTC and the Register of Preservation Surrogates. The ESTC catalogue includes details of materials published between c.1473 and 1800, largely English language publications from Britain and America.
In addition, in the Full record display there is now a ‘Printer friendly’ option in the menu on the right of the screen. This takes you to a version of the Full Record display that excludes all the page navigation and any book cover image. This makes for a more concise display that is useful if you want to quickly print out a single record. Use your browser ‘Back’ button to return to the Full Record display.
If you want to print multiple records from your search results you might be better to Mark the records you want then use the Download option. On the Download screen, if you ‘Save the records to a file’ this normally shows the chosen records in your browser window. You can then use your browser to print the records. The Download screen gives you a choice of record formats and shorter records, so you will get several records to a printed page.
We have started adding extra content to many Copac records. This includes:
- Tables-of contents
- Author biographical details
- Links to related web sites, such as an author’s own web site
- Suggested reading age and interest age
The tables-of-contents and summaries are included in the Subject search, whilst all the new information is searchable through the Keyword search. This should make it easier to find books on a subject, particularly for very precise subjects. It should also make it easier to decide whether a book you’ve found is likely to be of real interest.
Many Copac records now include this additional content information, and more is being added on a regular basis. We hope you like the new record content and that you find it useful.
Copac can now show book cover images for some records held in the Copac database.
This morning we released a new version of the Copac database. Internally the database is based around a MODS XML record. This makes it much easier for us to provide COinS, show records with non-Roman scripts, provide more download formats and generally improves our life by making the records a lot easier to work with. There is now much more scope for us to provide new facilities in the future.
We have tried to keep the user interface compatible with the old one, though we have introduced a few new features. One new feature is the ability to mark records across multiple result sets and then download all the marked records in one go.
We know some people embed our search URLs in their web pages and we have tried to maintain compatibility across the various versions of our web interface going back over 10 years. If we have broken any old URLs let us know and we’ll fix it if we can.
The records delivered by our Z39.50 service have changed. And again, we have tried to make the Z39.50 SUTRS and GRS-1 records compatible with the ones delivered from the old database. The XML record served by Z39.50 is now a MODS record, which should be much more useful to other services that are using our records. Hopefully the MODS record will be so useful, that people will eventually stop using the other record formats.