Yet another baffling move recently was Project Muse‘s decision to eliminate its Advanced Search mode and go to a browsable interface. The idea is that you put in a few search terms, then use the facets on the left side of the screen to narrow the results. I am not sure who thought of this idea, but the method of searching for a specific author/title result is now imbedded into a second search page. After getting some results, users can now use the “Modify Search” button to access a search screen that allows you to search for a specific article. Performance Reviews are now imbedded within result lists, without a facet to allow you to quickly pull them out – a major detraction from this brave new world of browse/search modes. Result lists are quite varied, and the facets don’t always provide users with the limits that one would hope to see. If you have a moment, try a few searches in Muse and let me know your thoughts.
In an unannounced move, the International Index to Music Periodicals radically changed its interface just before Spring Break. Users may be more inclined to navigate the newly streamlined Advanced Search screen. I would definitely recommend using the Advanced Search mode and using as many defaults to further limit your search as you see fit to try. Gone are the confusing screens with narrow and broad search terms, and the result list is more EBSCO-like than ever before. Some may feel that the specificity that made the old interface unique is now gone, but this same issue was a stumbling block for many. Give it a try and see what you think. If you want to shoot some feedback my way, I am happy to forward it on to Proquest for you. Along with IIMP, the National Newspaper Index, Baltimore Sun, and New York Times databases all have moved to this same streamlined interface.
Last month and the beginning of this month were both super busy and my blogging took a backseat to class preparation and other tasks. I am a little late in advertising that my office hours in Center for the Arts have begun, but honestly, I have had no lack of visitors during my times there. Next week, you can visit me in the cafe area of CFA on Wednesday, April 4th, from 11:30 to 1 PM. No appointments are needed, so just feel free to swing by and chat or ask a question as you may desire. If that timeframe is not good for you, just let me know another time you would like to meet, and you can either come see me at the library, or I can meet you in CFA at a time that is better for you.
After many years sitting cozy at the back of the third floor of Cook Library, I have now moved to the rear of the fourth floor. My new office number is Suite 407, office D. I am now right around the corner from CIAT – the remainder of my contact information all remains the same. If you are at the back of the fourth floor, looking for plays or poetry, swing by and say hello.