From your 1997-98 OCLC Users' Council Delegates:
Bernard Strong Marcia Talley
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ph: 202-287-9463 ph: 410-293-6905
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tam Dalrymple +1-614-761-5054
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Nita Dean +1-614-761-5002
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OCLC FIRSTSEARCH SERVICE ENHANCED
DUBLIN, Ohio, Aug. 11, 1997--OCLC has enhanced the FirstSearch World Wide
Web interface to make searching in specific indexes and use of advanced
searching techniques more visible and easier. The enhancements make the
list of keyword indexes accessible from the Basic Search Screen. The
complete list of searchable indexes, as well as sophisticated search
techniques, is available from the Advanced Search Screen.
"These FirstSearch Web enhancements are part of OCLC's ongoing efforts to
make powerful search capabilities not just available, but easy to use," said
John Sullivan, director, OCLC Online Reference Services. "These are the
first of a series of planned enhancements that will both introduce new
features and bring to the forefront sophisticated features that FirstSearch
has had all along."
The Basic Search Screen now includes a drop-down menu of keyword indexes
available for the selected database. A single click, for example, reveals
that WorldCat has a publisher index.
The Advanced Search Screen also allows users to pick indexes, including
phrase indexes, from drop-down menus, and makes it easy to use Boolean
operators and to combine searches from multiple indexes. Search limits
remain visible and easily accessible.
The changes are based on input from end users and librarians received via
online feedback forms and OCLC advisory and interest groups. During the
implementation of these new features, both novice users and information
specialists tested prototypes in the OCLC Usability Lab.
"In addition to the new features, our development staff installed software
changes to enhance the responsiveness of the Web interface," said Mr.
Sullivan. "The impact of these changes has been dramatic."
FirstSearch, one of the library community's fastest growing information
systems, has easy-to-use, yet powerful features for end users and
experienced researchers. FirstSearch provides access to some 60 databases,
full text and a link to the OCLC Interlibrary Loan service. The FirstSearch
Guided Tour, now available on the OCLC Home Page, has been updated to
reflect the enhancements.
OCLC Online Computer Library Center is a nonprofit, membership, computer
library service and research organization whose computer network and
services link more than 25,000 libraries in 63 countries
and territories [www.oclc.org]. (ND)