Tuesday, October 19, 2010

We need stack locations

I sat next to Stephen a few weeks ago in a Stackmap demo. He pointed out something to me that I had never registered in TEN YEARS. Sigh. Our catalog records don't include a floor location for Rush Rhees library. This isn't a problem for art books with the notation "Art Stacks - Art/Music Library". However this is a HUGE problem when you're looking for a book on one of the thirteen floors of stacks in Rush Rhees. Users have to take the call number, go to a little map on the wall which translates to the floor and then go to the floor. Not only are our stacks scary (lights on timers...), we make it really hard to find things. I over heard a campus tour guide the other day announce to her group "books are really hard to find". I'm afraid I would have to agree.

I'm sure there was a good reason for not include floor locations originally, but I think it's time to revisit that decision. Yes, we do shift books from floor to floor. But we don't shift them every day. While the current arrangement makes OUR life easier, it makes finding the books really really difficult for users.

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