May 2008 Archives
You've probably already noticed...but full-featured ratings and reviews are now available and fully functional. All the list errors Bob mentioned earlier should be fixed. Let us know if you're still seeing something unexpected. Here's a rundown of the new stuff. You can:
- Quickly rate items on a five-star scale
- Create and save drafts of your reviews
- Write a review in your preferred language
We'll add reviews from additional sources soon. For now, though, write a quick review of your favorite movie, book or article. On its detailed record, look for the “Review this item” link under the “Add to It” section.
Also new: Cover art added to lists
You may have seen full-color cover art on individual detailed records. Now you'll find cover art for your list items, too. For some reason, seeing all the covers makes me so happy. It's like it brings the books to life!
[BTW... You now know the ugly truth: I am not a programmer; see “code stuff” and “pushed/pulled” above]
The upshot of all this, though, is that sites like WorldCat.org can provide a link back to Google Books. Sometimes that will mean the full text of the book, sometimes not. For example, Cory Doctorow’s great novel, “Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom,” is available in full. So the WorldCat.org page for that book shows a link under “Get it” to “View Item Online (Google Books).” This takes you to the Google Books page for that work and the full text.
It’s not just a one-way street, though. If you find a book in Google Book Search, you can often follow a link for it back to local libraries through WorldCat.org. So, suppose you locate the Google Book page for "The Future of Freedom" by Fareed Zakaria. You'll find that the entry for this work is a limited preview. But you'll also find a link under the "Buy this Book" choices to "Find this book in a library," which (you guessed it), takes you back to the WorldCat.org page for it.
We hit the 200,000 registered user milestone on WorldCat today at 10:09:04 am Eastern Daylight Savings time. We have e-mailed the lucky registered user to make sure he or she is amenable to having a bit of publicity. So unfortunately we haven't heard back yet...but we hit the mark today and we're still climbing! So keep those registrations coming. We'll be celebrating the next milestone again before you know it!
We are so close. It will be any minute now, that the lucky 200,000 WorldCat user will register!! Will it be you? Will it be a friend you recommended? Stay tuned--we'll keep you updated as the day progresses...
Man, we are closing fast on the 200,000 registered user on Worldcat. We are only 619 people away from the goal--and chances are, we will cross the line either today or tomorrow.
It's now that I can also reveal the prize--a brand-spankin' new WorldCat t-shirt!
If you haven't registered yet, take a minute today to do it now. If you're the lucky winner, we'll e-mail you privately and make sure you're willing to have your name published and get a few minutes of fame. We will ask you for your preferred postal mailing address, so your t-shirt arrives where you'd like it to.
If you're already registered, (and curious about how to get your hands on your own snappy WorldCat t-shirt) sign up to receive WorldCat news by e-mail. Of course, as a faithful blog reader you'll be totally up to date, but this way you're covered in case you take a holiday from your feedreader!
It's true. WorldCat.org is having a few issues with lists disappearing. The now-you-see-it-now-you-don't trick that lists have been playing on us lately should be resolved in a couple of days. We've isolated the problem and have prepared a couple of fixes.
Don't worry if you're experiencing this problem. We are not losing your lists, we're just having trouble displaying them. As soon as this is resolved all of your lists will be available and should function normally.
If you haven't seen this issue, what happens is that your list of lists will disappear. For instance my list of list should be here:
If you go to that page you may (or may not) see my list of 20 or so lists. The lists themselves are still there even if you can't see them. For instance my list of "Radio Shows from WorldCat's Long Tail" is always accessible even if my list of list is not showing up.
This problem appears in the drop-down menu from the search result page and the item page which can make it difficult to add items to your lists.
New lists will likely appear if you happen to create one; however creating a new list could cause your old lists to run through the disappearing act.
Again, rest assured that we'll get your lists back in order as quickly as possible, and even improve a few things along the way. (Have you checked out our new reviews and ratings yet? Here's an example from my profile. Give them a whirl and let us know what you think.)
If you haven't told your friends, family and co-workers to register on WorldCat.org, now's the time. We're averaging about 500 new sign-ups a day, so at this pace we should hit our milestone this week!
Big news this week as Grand Theft Auto IV breaks not just video game sales records but all entertainment industry (film, music, etc.) records for first day ($310 million) and first week ($500 million) sales. If Halo 3 didn’t do it, GTA surely cements the video game industry as a, maybe even the, leading force in entertainment.
So what does this mean in terms of you and your local library? Quite a bit:
The first and most obvious (although maybe not if you think of your library only in terms of books): there’s a good chance many of the games you’re looking for, and shelling out 50 bucks or more for, are sitting on the shelves of your local library. And don’t forget the walkthrough books. Many libraries even loan game consoles.
The Job Market
An industry growing this fast and pulling in this much revenue is hot for new talent. From coding to writing to art and animation, your library is the perfect place to start researching the ins and outs of the business and what it takes to get your foot in the door. Here is some material to get started with, but there are dozens more. Your reference librarians are also a great resource to get the best information in your hands if you’re having trouble locating what you need. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
From health concerns and marketing sex and violence to children to improved hand-eye coordination and visual analysis of information, there’s no shortage of critical material regarding video games. The industry and its products are valid topics for academic consideration at all levels of education, and your library can serve as a research hub.
We're getting excited here, as the number of new registered users on WorldCat keeps going up. At last count, we're at 194,634. I know this number might seem small right now to some, but the more people hear about WorldCat and use it--the more front and center the Library becomes in everyone's minds as a great place to go for information, knowledge and life-changing learning. Online and in person.
If you have friends who haven't created a profile on WorldCat yet, now would be a good time to mention it to them. We're going to be watching that registered users count pretty carefully until we hit the 200,000 milestone. There's even talk of featuring the 200,00th profile in some way...stay tuned for details!