Online Librarian - a joint project of Murdoch and Macquarie Universities.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Reference librarians' opinions about virtual reference

The Thrill of the Chase in Cyberspace: A Report of Focus Groups with Live Chat Librarians
by Lynn Silipigni Connaway and Marie L. Radford,

It's a guest piece at the Informed Libarian Online site.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Reference chat - users publishing transcripts

Be polite. Be very polite.

A disgruntled library user published the transcript of a chat reference session on her blog. Our users could easily cut and paste from the chat window.

The link has been taken down now, but this post, Librarians are always on display, from the Alaskan Librarian discusses it.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Chat reference training - how do we do it?

Via Librarian in Black:


Lili Luo, a Doctoral Candidate at the School of Information and Library Science University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, posted on several listservs a link to the results of a survey she did of librarians about chat reference training techniques (what's being used currently). A lot of variation in the results--but simulated sessions with one librarian pretending to be a user and live hands-on practice and demos lead the pack.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Trends in chat and IM

via Stephen's Lighthouse:

Trends in Chat and IM

TechCrunch has a neat little posting about trends in Chat. Read the whole post here. The comments are interesting too. Here's the big six headings:

1. Interoperability
2. In-Browser Chat
3. Location Based Chat
4. Flexible Identities
5. Contextual Chat
6. Rich Media Chat

It's interesting to read these ideas in the context of libraries, virtual reference, our conversations and relationships with users as well as trends in the technology. I believe that all of these ideas are good opportunities but ultimately the market decides what they (real end-users) are comfortable with and what they will use. It is paramount that we continue to focus on simplicity as the magic sauce in this space.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Online Librarian to continue during semester break

Following discussions with Macquarie we have decided to continue to offer Online Librarian during the break, so Librarians please continue to register. Currently we are not receiving many calls, however we are still teaching OUA courses; then in January there will be trimester/summer school offerings. Also during the disruptions to the building at Murdoch it should be useful for students to use chat reference.

Online Librarian will be available:
December hours After Daylight Saving Commences in WA:
Monday – Friday 7 am – 5 pm wst / 9 am - 7 pm est (no weekends)
Not available 22 December - 5 January
8 Jan – 19 Feb hours
Monday - Friday 7 am – 7 pm wst / 9 am - 9 pm est (no weekends)

Monday, November 27, 2006

Online Librarian down at Macquarie

Online Librarian was off air today. Peter has just reset it but unfortunately it wasn't picked up til late in the day. Anyway, seems to be working now.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Instructions for installng Psi (Murdoch)

Download Psi software

  1. Go to
  2. Select Windows 98/2000/XP Installer (3 MB) .
  3. Select the mirror site Sydney, Australia.
  4. Follow the prompts, accepting the on screen defaults, and save to a temporary drive on your computer. (for example, c://temp)

Installing Psi software

  1. Open the folder you saved the software to (for example, c://temp)
  2. Click on the file psi-0.10-win-setup.exe
  3. Click on “Run”
  4. Install to the default location, C:\Program files\Psi
  5. Once the installation is complete, click “Finish”.
    Psi should then open on your screen. If it doesn’t, open using the Psi icon on your desktop.

Setting up your Jabber Account

  1. Using the dropdown menu on the bottom left of the screen, Go to Account Setup.
  2. Click on the “Add” button
  3. Give your account a name (for example, you own name). Make sure the box for “Register new account” is not ticked. Click on Add.
  4. Enter your Jabber ID in the account section. This will be in the format firstname and surname Initial followed by For example,
  5. Enter the default password onl1n3l1b
    You can change this later to an individual password.
  6. Click on Save, and Close.
  7. On the Psi screen, change your status to Online (at the bottom right of the screen). You should now see a list of Murdoch names.

Hello from JeanC

Hi, I'm Jean Coleman. I am one of the Reference Librarians at Murdoch with subject responsibility for Australian Indigenous Studies, Tourism and Journalism.