Matthew Reidsma

Work Notes

Updates from the GVSU Libraries’ Web Team.
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Request Button Magic

Since we got Millennium (now Sierra), there has been confusion about the request buttons, since items in the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) had a different button than items in the stacks. While all requestable items have a “Request” button at the top of the screen, only ASRS items have a request button next to the individual items in the holdings list. For any item, a patron clicking the top button will log in with his or her GVSU login, and then place a typical hold on the item. If the item is located in the ASRS, however, the crane never moves. It has to be manually moved by staff once the holds are printed out. The only way to make the crane move is by clicking the Request button next to the individual item in the holding list.

Request button on the top only in books in the stacks
Request button on the top and at the item level for books in the ASRS

After adding two more cranes at the Mary Idema Pew library, this problem has gotten worse.

After looking at all of the alternatives, I’ve come up with a possible solution to the request button problem. It involves hiding the top request button from all items and consolidating the request buttons in the item holdings list. So if the item:

  • is in the ASRS and is Available, we will simply hide the top request button. Now the only way to request it will also move the crane.
  • is in the ASRS but is not available, we will hide the top request button but change the item-level request button to allow the user to log in and put a traditional hold on the item. Right now you can’t do this without knowing the difference between buttons.
  • is in the stacks, we will add a request button next to each item and hide the one on the top.

Explaining this is tough, but I think it’ll be easier if you see it for yourselves. I’ve made a little bookmarklet that you can install in your browser and run on any results page in the catalog. This way you can choose to selectively run this code on different types of pages to see how they will look and act.

To install the bookmarklet, just drag the link below to your browser’s toolbar (IE8 users might have to “Add to Favorites -> Favorites Bar”). If you have questions, I have a little video below where I show you how to install and use the bookmarklet.

Updated 6/30/2016: The code is not longer available for this bookmarklet.
Request Button Magic

Once you’ve installed the bookmarklet, do a few searches in the catalog. When you’re on a bib record, click the bookmarklet and it will run the code to make the changes I’ve described above. You can then click the new Request buttons to see how they will work. Take notes and let me know what you like or don’t like.

As always, send me your feedback. I think this will really help alleviate some of the confusion we have around the different functions of these request buttons, but this is only a first draft. Help me make it better!

Help Video

If you need help installing or using the bookmarklet, watch this video: