November 10, 2008

ARC 2.0

ARC 2.0 was installed in mid-October. The current address is:

The login ID and password remain the same.

Let me know if you need help.

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

High-Low Books Update

Coordinated by Deb, the Technical Services staff have finished cataloging and processing all the old backlog of High interest-Low vocabulary books.

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

New Book List Update

A new feature has been added to the monthly New Book List ( Instead of copying the title and then pasting it to the OPAC in order to find out the availability of a new book, now people can click the title in the New Book List to retrieve the record in the OPAC. This new feature is made available due to the recent upgrade of ARC, which allows access to the Aleph Bib Sys Number.

September 9, 2008

Cataloging of AILRC collections completed

The American Indian Learning Resources Center (AILRC) approached the Library in May 2007, inquiring if there is a cataloging system that is easy to manage and will allow students to search their collections on the web.

Bill and I met with AILRC staff and provided them with a couple of options. One option is to use some open source ILS system, like Koha or Evergreen. However, even if an open source ILS software itself is free, its installation and maintenance require staff expertise. Another option is to utilize the current ILS system the Library uses, that is, Aleph. If so, the Library would catalog their collections and install a circulation workstation in AILRC.

AILRC accepted our offer. And we see this endeavor as a way to further extend the Library's expertise to the campus community. The ultimate beneficiaries are our students and faculty.

The actual cataloging of AILRC collections didn't start until April this year, due to the fact that our staff were still cataloging the Tweed Museum collection.

I'm happy to report that coordinated by Deb, Technical Services staff has finished cataloging AILRC collections. The total number of AIRLC books added to the catalog is 2,539.

Now, AILRC collections can be searched at:

Bill and I will meet with AILRC staff in two weeks to assess the cataloging project and see what other needs AILRC might have.

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

July 25, 2008

MLAC Project Update

Reference librarians have selected 18,737 books, about 8% of our book collection, to be sent to MLAC.

A student assistant (40 hours per week), Collin Downing, was hired for the project. Our plan is to complete the project by the end of summer.

Coordinated by Ellen and Brenda, and assisted by Pat and other students (Andy Lindberg and Troy Hamne), the project has been progressing well on target. So far, 9,955 volumes have been shipped to MLAC. Two to four pallets are being shipped weekly from the library loading dock.

Thanks, Deb, for creating a macro to facilitate updating the holding records in Aleph.

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

April 24, 2008

Cataloging AILRC Collection

The UMD Library has begun to add the books in the American Indian Learning Resource Center to the online catalog. The first cartload of over 100 books was returned to the AILRC on April 21.

The AILRC provides supportive services to American Indian and Alaskan Native students with the goal of recruiting and retaining American Indians and Alaskan Natives and enhancing their educational experiences.

We hope that adding their books to our catalog will offer more access to their resources and compliment the services the Center provides.

Deb Johnson

April 10, 2008

1st Shipment to MLAC

Technical Services sent the first 2008 shipment of 877 books, part of the weeding project, to MLAC (Minnesota Library Access Center) on March 28, 2008.

The books were pulled from the shelves. Their Aleph item and holdings records were changed. Then books were boxed and loaded on to a pallet at the Kirby Loading Dock.

While they are in transit their status is "In- process". When they arrive at MLAC, the Item Process Status will be changed by MLAC staff.

As a matter of fact, when I visited MLAC last week, Tim McCluske told me that our books had just arrived. He gave me a tour of MLAC and showed me where our books will be: Row 7 in the main cavern. My regret is that I didn’t shoot a picture. Otherwise you could “see? our books there in your mind’s eye.

Thanks, Ellen and Brenda, for facilitating the weeding project!

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

Retrospective Conversion of Tweed Museum Collection

To promote the usage of the book collection at the Tweed Museum of Art and to enable online searching, Technical Services started cataloging books in Tweed in June 2007 and completed the retrospective conversion of about 3,023 books by January 2008.

The Tweed Museum Collection includes books on types of art, art history, biographies of artists, museum catalogs, auction catalogs, and books about the subjects represented in artwork.

Now the Tweed holdings appear in the Library Catalog, and books can be used in Tweed but do not circulate. The Tweed Reading-room itself will be rearranged slightly to better show off the collection. We will be adding to the collection regularly as new gifts and purchases arrive.

Take a peek at:

Thanks, Deb, for the coordination of and major contribution to this worthy project! And my thanks also goes to Marilyn, Brenda, and Pat for their contributions to the completion of the project!

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

March 27, 2008

e-Books from the Online Library of Liberty

Last November, Rory asked me if it is possible to include selected titles of the Online Library of Liberty in our library catalog. I believe that free e-books are a new source that we should tap into and assigned the task to Deb.

The Online Library of Liberty is a project of Liberty Fund, Inc., a private, non-profit educational foundation based in Indianapolis, Indiana. The aim of the OLL is to provide thousands of titles about individual liberty, limited constitutional government, and the free market, free of charge to the public, for educational purposes.

I’m pleased to report that Deb has finished cataloging of what Rory has selected: 142 titles, from The Lyrical Dramas of Aeschylus and Beowulf in the original language to The Life of George Washington.

Of the 142 titles, about half of them required original cataloging, as there are only bib records for the print version in OCLC.

Thanks, Deb!

Shixing Wen
Head of Technical Services

March 18, 2008

Completion of Teaching Materials' Withdrawal

Brenda has finished the withdrawal project of Teaching Materials. Altogether, 1,432 volumes have been withdrawn from the collection.

Thanks, Brenda!


January 29, 2008

Bob's 1st Anniversary!

Today is the 1st anniversary day for Bob Archer. I was to say “Congratulations, Bob!? But on second thought, I’ll say “THANK you, Bob!?

Bob retired in 2006 from the position of Vice President and Managing Director of the Personal Trust Department of U.S. Bank in Milwaukee. After settling down in Duluth, his dormant passion for library work was rekindled, 30 years later since he received an MSLS from Western Reserve University in 1967. He volunteered to work at the UMD Library Technical Services and started on the afternoon of January 29, 2007.

In the past year, Bob volunteered 688 hours of his time to the library, not to speak of his paying the parking out of his own pocket. He contributed in many areas of the Technical Services, including assisting with the mail, pulling periodicals for binding, arriving new periodical issues, organizing the sample and gift periodicals, updating publishers’ mailing lists, and other job duties as assigned.

One area worthy of a special commend is his contribution to the Serial Item Clean-up project. Of the 45,131 item records corrected in 2007, Bob has contributed the lion’s share. Bob’s work has greatly improved the accessibility of our periodical collections via OPAC search, benefiting faculty and students at CEHSP (CSD, ED, SPER, PMH, SW), SFA (ART, MU, TH), and AMIND, COMM, COMP, ENGL, GEOG, HIST, LANG, and PHIL.

Bob’s work is of superior quality. His willingness to participate in teamwork is exceptional. His professionalism and friendliness make him a wonderful addition to the Technical Services. We are honored to have Bob and grateful to his contributions.

Thanks, Bob!

-- Shixing

August 24, 2007

Update on Serial Sorting Project

Serial Sorting Project is to standardize the description of each periodical issue so that they will be sorted or listed in the Library catalog consistently in the reversed chronological order.

So far, Bob Archer, Ellen and Brenda have completed the periodicals in the collections for the College of Education and Human Service Professions and the School of Fine Arts. The periodicals in the College of Liberal Arts are near completion, and many titles in other colleges have also been cleaned up. Altogether, a total number of 36,622 periodical issues have been updated.

Submitted by Shixing

June 15, 2007

Completion of the Tattle-Taping Project

I'm happy to report that the Tattle-Taping Project has been completed!

The Tattle-Taping Project started on February 28, 2007 in response to a University auditor recommendation that "The Library should begin the process of identifying older books to which staff should attach 'Tattle-Tape' security strips to reduce the risk of theft. Priority should be given to higher-value books and those in categories with a history of theft."

Based on the statistics of missing and lost items generated from Aleph by Darlene and the empirical knowledge by Kathryn, 20 subject areas have been identified for the Project. Adele has supported us by allowing us to use a group study room for the Project. As luck would have it, Liz got a free loan, from the Duluth Public Library, of a device called "Application Dispenser", which greatly facilitated the application of tattle tapes.

Two groups of 3 student assistants were hired in succession to complete the project. And they have worked diligently and processed at the rate of 150 books per hour. They also figured out how to install new tapes to the Application Dispenser, and reused "jammed" tapes to reduce the waste.

At the beginning of the Project, Charlene has trained students how to reshelve books correctly. One byproduct of this project is that the books that have been tattle-taped are now sitting neatly on the shelves.

All Technical Services staff have willingly participated in the Project, providing supervision and support to the student assistants in turn. Brenda has taken the initiative to coordinate with other staff, and Ellen has sought for help from the Circulation Team when needed, in addition to getting the key to the group study room daily. Pat has taken all those that need repair from the students and process them separately. Their initiatives are greatly appreciated.

All together, including Northeast Minnesota Historical Center's collection, 52,811 books have been tattle-taped by June 13, 2007.

Submitted by Shixing

April 23, 2007

Update on Tattle-tape Project

Under the supervision of all Technical Services staff, particularly Brenda, the tattle-taping project has been moving along very well. As of last Friday (April 20), 24,213 books in 13 subject areas have been tattle-taped.

Our original estimate of the books to tattle-tape is 24,879. However, there are 7 subject areas still remaining. Obviously, there are more books than we expected for this project. On the other hand, our students are working at a speed faster than anticipated. So the project is still on target.

One thing to note is that our students, Nick, Jordan and Kelsey, have taken the initiative to salvage the jammed security strips from the application dispenser and put them in the books by hand. That saves us some extra money.

Submitted by Shixing

March 28, 2007

Update on Serials Holding Clean-Up Project

The Serials Holding Clean-Up Project has been progressing very well. Under the coordination of Ellen, Bob, Brenda, and Pat have been correcting the chronological and/or numerical descriptions of periodical issues in our collections.

As of today, 20,662 item records have been edited. As a result, these issues are now sorted nicely in the Web OPAC.

Submitted by Shixing

March 19, 2007

Progress of the Tattle-Taping Project: the 3rd floor is completed

Thanks to all the staff in the Technical Services for their active participation and supervision, and to the project students, Nick, Kelsey and Jordan, for their diligent work, the Tattle-Taping Project has reached a milestone: all the 9 targeted subject areas on the 3rd floor have been completed, with a total volume count of over 9,000.

The project has now moved to the 4th floor and is expected to be accomplished on schedule.

Submitted by Shixing

March 12, 2007

Technical Services Staff Update

 Periodical Holding Clean-Up Project
Correcting the periodical holding display in OPAC tops the wish lists of both the Reference Team and the Circulation Team. Over the years, periodical issues were checked in with different descriptions regarding chronology and enumeration. That resulted in a messy display in Aleph OPAC. It is hard for patrons and staff to determine which issue we have in the collections.

With the addition of Bob, it is possible for the Technical Services to formally address this issue. Bob, under the training and supervision of Ellen, has set to standardize the description of the chronology and enumeration of periodical issues in Aleph. He has completed correcting two major messy titles, JAMA and Nature. As a result, all issues and volumes of these journals are now sorted nicely and in order in the Library catalog. We will continue working on this project until all periodical issues are displayed in a correct and consistent chronologic/numeric order in the OPAC.

 Tattle-Taping Project
The University auditor recommended that “The Library should begin the process of identifying older books to which staff should attach ‘Tattle-Tape’ security strips to reduce the risk of theft. Priority should be given to higher-value books and those in categories with a history of theft.? In response to this recommendation, a Tattle-Taping Project has been launched.

20 subject areas have been identified, with a total of 25,000 volumes. Three student assistants (Nicholas Entinger, Kelsey Genevich and Jordan Schultz) have been hired to work under the supervision of Technical Services staff. Shixing would like to thank Brenda, Ellen, Pat, Deb, Marilyn and Anne for their willingness to take on this additional responsibility.

The project started on February 28, 2007 and has been progressing smoothly. It is expected to complete by June 1, 2007.

 Re-Cataloging of Monographic Series Project
In accordance with the new cataloging policy, Marilyn has started re-cataloging monographic series as books. She has completed re-cataloging the volumes of the “Special Papers? by the Geological Society of America on the 3rd floor and in the Annex.

 Weeding Project
Brenda has been working on the weeding project, including withdrawing or transferring items from the library collections to MLAC. She has completed processing the Z subclass.

 2nd Ex Libris Regional Users’ Group Meeting
This year’s meeting was held at the Northland Inn in Minneapolis, March 5-6.

Deb attended the sessions of “The Impending Demise of the Local OPAC? by the keynote speaker Gregg Silvis (University of Delaware); “Using Indexing to Leverage Catalog Data for Users? by Shelby Harken (University of North Dakota), Stephen Hearn (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities), and Bobby Bothmann (Minnesota State University); “AlephSpeak? by Betsy Friesen (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities); “Verde? by Dave Stout (Regional Sales Manager, Western Region, Ex Libris, USA); and “Primo: The Ex Libris Next Generation Catalog in the Making? by Carmit Marcus (Ex Libris), Janet Arth and Christina Meyer (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities) on March 5 and on March 6, “SFX: Categories? by Gary Fouty (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities) and Wendy Roberston (University of Iowa); and “Non-Roman Characters in Aleph? by Selina Lin (University of Iowa).

Shixing attended on March 5 the sessions of “The Impending Demise of the Local OPAC? by the keynote speaker Gregg Silvis (University of Delaware); “SFX Menu Miscellanea? by John Barneson (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities), Vernon Leighton (Winona State University), and David Brown (Mayo Clinic Libraries); “Technical Services: Down & Dirty with Monographs. Section 1: Acquisitions and Fast Cataloging? presented by a panel; “Verde? by Dave Stout (Regional Sales Manager, Western Region, Ex Libris, USA); and “Primo: The Ex Libris Next Generation Catalog in the Making? by Carmit Marcus (Ex Libris), Janet Arth and Christina Meyer (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities). On March 6, he attended the sessions of “SFX: Categories? by Gary Fouty (University of Minnesota, Twin Cities) and Wendy Roberston (University of Iowa); “EDI Ordering: Getting Started? by Brian Thompson (University of Iowa); “MetaLib3? by Todd Bruns (University of Wisconsin, Madison) and Steve Elfstrand (University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire); and the “Ex Libris Presentation? by Dan Trajman (President, Ex Libris, USA).

Anne attended the session of “Technical Services: Down & Dirty with Monographs. Section 1: Acquisitions and Fast Cataloging? presented by a panel on March 5, 2007.

Ellen and Brenda attended the sessions of “Technical Services: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Serials. Section 1: Acquisitions? and “Technical Services: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Serials. Section 2: Cataloging?.

 SFX Training Workshop
Shixing attended the SFX Refresher Training for the Upper-MidWest Users Group by Rosalyn Mets from the Boston Office of Ex Libris on March 7th, 2007 at the Hennepin Technical College.

Submitted by Shixing

Technical Services Volunteer

Mr. Bob Archer started working in Technical Services as a volunteer on January 30, 2007. Bob earned his MSLS from Western Reserve University and JD from Northwestern University. He worked as a reference and acquisitions librarian in Southeast Missouri State College, and later as a government documents librarian at Northwestern University Law Library. Bob retired from the position of Vice-President and Managing Director of the Personal Trust Department of the U.S. Bank in Milwaukee last September.

Welcome, Bob!

Submitted by Shixing