February 1, 2008

Undeadening the Dead Ends

Filed under: precat — jenny @ 1:16 pm

We know that enterprising libraries such as The University of Calgary, McMaster University, Topeka Shawnee County Public Library, and Baylor University have implemented MeeboMe widgets at the dead ends of their catalogs. I’m wondering if any libraries have gone further to add this type of functionality to the “sorry, no search results” pages in the databases they pay for or on the 404 error pages on their websites, blogs, etc.?
The latter could be under our control (for many libraries, not all), but is there even a vendor out there that lets libraries customize the dead end messages? If you know of one, please let me know in the comments!


  1. […] of Texas Undeadening the Dead Ends » This Summary is from an article posted at The Shifted Librarian on Friday, February 01, 2008 […]

    Pingback by University Update - Baylor University - Undeadening the Dead Ends — February 1, 2008 @ 7:46 pm

  2. I’ve been thinking a lot about this recently too, I think the Meebo Me widgets are a fantastic addition to the OPAC and something I hope we begin to see more of.
    I read an interesting article recently about Amazon who have managed to patent an error page with useful suggestions: http://mashable.com/2008/01/30/amazon-patent-error-pages/. I don’t know what exactly the patent covers and whether this will have implications for others wanting to use a similar feature, I certainly hope not!

    Comment by Jo Alcock — February 2, 2008 @ 9:02 am

  3. Here’s my attempted at undeading our dead-end pages. Our website 404 page was easy, since we have complete control over that. But my library‘s catalog “not found” page was more challenging, since we’re part of a consortium and change is a slow and often fruitless process. So, I took the greasemonkey route and embedded an “email a librarian” form (no IM for us) as well as a login to search the state-wide catalog beyond our consortium. This screencapture shows what it looks like, and so is the greasemonkey script for anyone interested.

    Comment by herzogbr — February 2, 2008 @ 12:50 pm

  4. This is the first time I have heard of this. How insanely cool!!

    Comment by Leah — February 3, 2008 @ 9:31 am

  5. I heard aof this the first time but it is really real

    Comment by Gartenmoebel — February 3, 2008 @ 10:36 am

  6. We have several places that could work to help the ‘dead end’ situation in EBSCOhost: We allow libraries to ‘brand’ basically every page. We also have an ‘Ask-A-Librarian’ feature that could be helpful…
    What we don’t do, though, is to allow Libraries to customize the “No Results found” message. We’ll consider how we can combine these capabilities… thanks for the idea Jenny!

    Comment by Mike Gorrell — February 5, 2008 @ 7:21 am

  7. […] response to my post about IM widgets at dead ends, Brian Herzog offers a great example of using a greasemonkey script to provide an email door out of […]

    Pingback by The Shifted Librarian » More Undead Ends — February 12, 2008 @ 6:42 am

  8. […] response to my post about IM widgets at dead ends, Brian Herzog offers a great example of using a greasemonkey script to provide an email door out of […]

    Pingback by News » More Undead Ends — February 22, 2008 @ 11:41 pm

  9. […] Option in Online Catalog Jenny Levine at The Shifted Librarian posted about libraries that are starting to use instant messaging within their catalogs.  When the patron is struck, it can provide an option to work with a real person.  The Meebo Me […]

    Pingback by IM Option in Online Catalog « Library Technology in Texas — March 28, 2008 @ 8:44 pm

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