These designs focus on what we’re calling ‘portals’: useful starting pages for researchers to explore particular groups of items. These can be homepages to individual digital collections, or portals to groups of items from various collections.
We hosted a discussion session among library staff last week. I’ll capture the conversation from that session in the comments section of this post.
Branding & Navigation
- Stronger ties with branding from our library website via the top brand bar. New Digital Collections logo. New primary navigation to easily browse the collections from any page.
- Portal brand bar underneath can include icon, logo, colors
- Prominent placement.
- Single search box with option to change scope to all digital collections
- Advanced Search pops down options to search within particular fields
- Customizable section to show highlights, further distinguish portals from each other
- Can be a slideshow to show several images, a YouTube video, or other content
Tabbed Browse Box
- Browse the common fields in this group of items
- Browse by any letter of the alphabet
- Browse categories, if exist
- Pull in blog posts related to this collection
- Comments powered by Disqus Comments
- Comment as guest, through Twitter, OpenID
- Comment on others’ comments; subscribe to RSS or email for thread
- Links to our Research Centers
- Links to Digital Collections’ accounts in social media services
- Links to contact, help, about pages
- Google Translate widget to auto-translate any page into another language
- Show popular items from this group
- Manually entered (for now)
- Might be reworded as Highlights or Features
What’s the motivation behind the designs above? In general, we’re shooting for a way to best meet the needs of three main groups of stakeholders. Using broad strokes (see our previous blog posts for a more detailed look), they are:
1. End users/researchers: easily explore the collections & discover items of interest.
2. Library staff who sponsor & support the collections: help researchers explore and understand the collections, make the collections aesthetically pleasing, give users appropriate assistance when needed.
3. Digital Collections program staff: publish and provide access to digitized objects quickly and efficiently, provide tools for staff to manage the collections and the access points to them, maximize the discoverability and use of the collections.
What do you think of these mockups? Leave us your thoughts in the comments; we’d love to hear from you…