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

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.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Online Librarian offline Thursday morning

MQ reported Online Librarian was down this morning; it was shortly restored by MAMS/Kevin. Thanks. Operators please keep an eye on it just in case instability persists.

Another blog freshie

I too am new to the world of blogging, bloggers and blogspots. Thanks for the invitation Annmaree. My name is Susan Vickery and I am Manager, Liaison & Research Services (Sciences) at Macq U. I job share with Perri-Lee Sandell. I welcome this chance to contribute to and benefit from discussion. Thanks for setting up.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Online Librarian offline and online again

Hello all,
Online Librarian was offline temporarily just now at approx 1.00pm WST but is back now. You will need to re-register if you were previously registered.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Proquest downtime, 11 November

Proquest will be down for maintenance on Saturday 11 November, 11am to 12 midday WA time (2-3pm for the east).

OLL at Murdoch downtime

Hi all,

Online Librarian at Murdoch will be unavailable from 12-1pm WST on Wednesday 8 November so that our IT guys can upgrade the server which handles the authentication process.


Helen B

Improvements to Online LIbrarian 1 November

MAMS staff have created some improvements for Online Librarian.
System generated statistics are available through a feed. The report includes: user; operator; operator’s campus; user’s campus; start time; end time; and number of messages exchanged.

  • These statistics provide a record of activity, including any conversations that have been initiated for testing. From tomorrow we will be able to add notes to the statistics table to indicate where we have initiated a chat session for testing. To do so when you use the “bye” command please add “Testing” – ‘!bye Testing’. This will then show on the statistics table as a test.

Other improvements

  • Timeouts -a conversation is closed automatically after non activity for 15 minutes. When this happens the operator will be notified; also a note will be included automatically in the statistics report for conversations that are closed due to a timeout
  • Conversations that have ended
    If messages are sent to a conversation that no longer exists it will get an automatic reply rather than nothing (as currently happens)
  • OLL server restarts
    If the system is restarted during the day a reminder message for operators to log back in will be sent
  • Display of user names
    Murdoch users will now have their first name displayed in the initial chat screen

Our developers are still working on other enhancements including routing calls onto another operator if they are not responded to in 3 minutes. Ideally we set our status to ‘away’ however it’s very easy to forget and currently callers are left hanging.
If you experience any problems, especially a call just disappearing please let either Helen or Jean M know (Murdoch) and Annmaree or Margaret W(MQ) so we can relay the problem onto MAMS.

Thanks everyone for your efforts so far, they are much appreciated.

Thanks for setting up

Thanks to Kathryn and Annmaree for getting this blog going. Good communication tool for us to use, not to mention opportunity to practice blogging!

Slow response times sending and receiving on PSI

Dear all,

MU is experiencing 2-3 minute delays in sending and receiving messages within a each PSI session. Has anyone at Murdoch experienced this problem?


Margaret Wright (Marg)

Greetings from Macquarie

Hi everyone,

What a great idea! Many thanks to Kathryn for organising this!


Margaret Wright

Hi again

Hi - just trying my first post,
I'm an Enquiry and Lending Services Librarian here at Murdoch and also do Online Librarian when I'm able.
Good to meet you all at Macquarie!

Cool IM reference ad.

From the Canadian University of Guelph Ask us! service . They have a nice starting screen too.

There are more photos in K Jane's library signs photostream. Part of a series that includes "Ask a librarian while making macaroni cheese", "Ask a librarian and stay in your fuzzy pink slippers".

I'm afraid I like it better than our dorky guy with headphones. :)

view photos Uploaded to Flickr on November 6, 2006
by K Jane


This is great!

Another Hi

Hi, another newbee. I'm Liaison Librarian for Society Culture Media & Philosophy and Education at Macquarie Uni Library. I use Online Librarian at the Ref desk. The authentication is great, I can retrieve my split brain.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Hi from Sue Hele

Hi, I am the librarian responsible for Environmental Science at Murdoch University. I also work in online librarian. I previously worked in cataloguing at Murdoch, and continue to catalogue Indonesian language material. This is my first blog attempt, and so I am just testing the ground ..

IM talking points

Some IM talking points for libraries considering using IM for their reference service have been posted by Aaron Schmidt at

Among them:

  • IM is just for kids
  • IM is going to destroy our computers (a favorite IT chorus).
  • We don’t have enough money to do IM.
  • Speaking of virtual reference, we’re already doing it with / questionpoint / docutek. We don’t need IM.
  • We don’t have enough time to do IM.
  • Small bonus

Hi from Annmaree B

Hi from Annmaree at Macquarie.
I'm a liason librarian for law & humanities as well as being involved with online librarian for the past few years. This is my very 1st time as a blogger
Kathryn, can you let me know what the next step is in setting up the staff here? So far it all seems pretty easy thanks to your excellent instructions. Online librarian was offline here today but it has now come back to life.

Factiva downtime, 12 November

Factiva will be down this coming Sunday, 12 November, from 9am to 11am West Australian time. There will also be intermittent downtime from 11am to 3pm. For "eastern staters" (Vic, NSW, Tas) the downtime is 12midday to 2pm, and intermittent from 2pm to 6pm. The downtime is for maintenance purposes.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Daylight Saving Time in the West

The Private members "Daylight Saving Bill" if passed will mean Western Australia will not longer be 3 hours behind the Eastern States. Our curtains may fade of course!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Hello from Sue D

I'm Sue Dowling, Murdoch's electronic resources librarian. I'm the CAUL datasets coordinator, so all the Caul stuff about offers, renewals, and so on comes via me. I also look after (well, try to) SFX, and I'm currently working on implementing our Millennium Electronic Resource Management (ERM) module.