Part of the issue is that doing this stuff is HARD. Is keyword search inherently untrustworthy? Google proves not neccesarily, but the thing is, the _genius_ of Google is that it made keyword search actually work! This is not an easy thing to do, and they did it, actually, not just with a straight keyword search, but by recognizing that incoming link text is a kind of descriptive metadata. We don't have the same kind of metadata in a library catalog.So yeah, if the interface is cleaned up and simplified and makes sense... but then you get facet options to refine (a la EV2 or Endeca or the new Primo)... stuff that really makes your great metadata work for you (thanks to Lorcan Dempsey at CIL for this thought), then yeah, cleaning up is great.
So I get frustrated when people think, gee, Google works, Google is keyword search, so if we just do keyword search in our catalog, then it will work, and be as good as Google, cause that's what we need to do to compete with Google. There are so many misconceptions there.
So yeah, we should figure out how to make the catalog easier to use, part of that is figuring out how to get a 'single box' seach that works (for SOME purposes), but it's not easy to do, and won't come just from trying to ape Google.
Christina's LIS Rant by Christina K. Pikas is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.
Christina Kirk Pikas
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