In late April, the library was closed for a day to allow for implementation of an upgraded version of SCLENDS. These upgrades occur roughly every six months and provide an opportunity to fix some problems within our cataloging and circulation system — the most recent upgrade moved us from version 2.4 to version 2.5 (more specifically, version 2.5.3).
Many of the changes that are made during an upgrade are pretty minor and often go unnoticed by the vast majority of users, even library staff. For example, the addition of a “Server Add-Ons” menu will be pretty irrelevant for SCLENDS staff and patrons for the time being. Some of these changes are important to those working well behind the scenes in SCLENDS and with the Evergreen system as a whole. The changes may improve access or usage without really being observed by most users.
Other changes are more evident to users. One goal of this upgrade was to provide better catalog search capabilities as well as to provide new features to improve use by those who are visually impaired. However, one of the biggest changes is making the catalog much more smartphone and tablet friendly. Previously, to search the catalog on a smartphone simply involved using the same screen you would see on a computer, but shrunk to the size of the smartphone screen.
The new upgrade provides a much easier interface — the new interface uses much better sizing to get all needed fields on the screen with reasonably-sized text. Users can type in the desired search terms, set the type of search (keyword, title, etc.), select the formats to search, and choose which library or libraries to search without having to navigate a cumbersome screen that is much better suited to a computer. Even the “Advanced Search” is more suited to a smartphone or tablet, with each new field placed in a vertical column, meaning users simply have to work their way down the screen rather than trying to zoom in and navigate side to side.