The University Library has launched a beta version of Yufind, an experimental alternative interface to its catalog. Yufind is not a replacement for Orbis, the Library’s current catalog, but it provides a new kind of discovery experience for users, one that better fits current search expectations and incorporates a variety of Web 2.0 tools.
Orbis transaction logs show that searches often fail because of misspelled words, use of natural language (versus controlled vocabularies like Library of Congress Subject Headings), or information entered into the wrong search fields. Users also expect a Google-like interface that suggests alternate spellings and employs sophisticated relevancy ranking and faceted navigation to help display and narrow search results.
Yufind offers a powerful keyword relevancy ranking algorithm, RSS feeds, formatted export of bibliographic citations, integration of cover art, book reviews, sample book chapters, tables of contents, and real-time circulation status. Future enhancements will include the ability to bookmark and annotate records and send them to an e-mail address, cell phone, or PDA, while longer-term goals aim to integrate archival finding aids, visual image records, and new facets that will allow results to be narrowed by item availability and location.
The Library invites user feedback to help improve Yufind, and questions and comments can be sent to Daniel Lovins. For detailed information about Yufind and to contact members of the project team visit About Yufind.