KB+ Release 4.0

This release continues to improve and develop the functionality of the system in response to feedback, including changes to the dashboard, the opportunity to search across almost 20,000 titles now available in the knowledge base and continued expansion on our export formats to now include and export for the OCLC link resolver.

New and updated features include;

On Screen Help Information icon

We are introducing information icons on various screens across KB+ to provide additional information. (we are currently working on the text to populate the information icons and this will be available soon) We hope this will help towards making the system more intuitive and easier to use. Each user can decide whether they wish to see the information icons or not, and by default this option is switched off. In order to see this icon you must go to your Profile (menu at the top right of the screen) and edit the new “Show Info Icon” setting to ‘Yes’.

Screenshot of the Show Info Icon profile setting

Changes to the Dashboard

Dashboard

  • Announcements  – you will be notified via announcements of changes or deletions to URLs, these will be applied automatically to your subscriptions so no action is required
  • Announcements  – these will now be created once a day in order to reduce the number of announcements posted during times of busy activity
  • Latest discussion – you will no longer see any automated postings and therefore will be a shorter list focusing solely on discussions created by KB+ users. We hope this will make the dashboard display clearer and make it easier to catchup with the latest discussions.

Log of actions for Licenses & Subscriptions

Under the ‘History’ tab you will be able to see a list of your actions in relations to any ‘To Dos’ for a package. You will therefore have a list of which actions you accepted, rejected or are pending per package providing a useful record of the changes that have occurred.

Search Titles

You can now search across all the titles within the knowledge base by selecting Manage>All Titles and entering a search term. Once you select a title you will also be able to see all the packages where this title appears providing a useful overview of cross-coverage.

The search is currently done by ‘Phrase Searching’ but we are keen to hear how you would like this type of search to work and how you would like the results displayed.

Exports

We are keen to ensure that you are able to use KB+ data with the other systems you work with and therefore continue to develop export formats which may be of value, please let us know if there are other types of export formats you might require. Our latest addition to the formats is one for the OCLC Resolver, which joins the existing ‘Serials Solutions’ and ‘SFX’ exports.

Previously in order to see relevant export formats you had to edit your profile, we have now removed this requirement to improve accessibility and awareness, and so all users now see all the available export options.

Screenshot of exports
Removing a License from a Subscription

You can now remove a licence from a subscription by going to the subscription details screen and changing the Licence value to ‘None’. This removes the link between the licence and the subscription.

Viewing a License from a Subscription

Once a licence is has been added to a subscription there is now a ‘Link’ which you can click to take you directly to the licence details screen to easily check licence  terms and related information. This is in addition to a similar link available from the Issue Entitlement screen.

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Webinar for KB+ release 3.3

If you would like to see some of the new features of release 3.3 in action, hear more about how KB+ and JUSP are working together and other exciting future developments please take a look at the recording of last weeks webinar.

https://jisccollections.webex.com/jisccollections/ldr.php?AT=pb&SP=MC&rID=24984732&rKey=c3fd8622087707dc

The webinar starts with an introduction from Liam highlighting how KB+ has grown over the last couple of years in both content and features. A focus for the future includes building on communication and collaboration including highlighting how KB+ can be integrated into library workflows.

Owen provides a live demo of the system covering the basics such as adding licenses and subscriptions while showing some of the systems new features.

Jo talks about the benefits of JUSP and KB+ working together and the importance of getting feedback and ideas from the community on how we develop the systems further

The webinar ends with David talking about possible future developments including work with GoKB and the investigation into ebooks and whether or not KB+ could offer a solution.

KB+ Release 3.3

With this new release we are able to provide some major developments and improvements to help embed KB+ in institutions workflows. The system now provides greater flexibility in terms of communication, tracking changes, adding subscriptions, exporting data etc.

Some of the key new developments include:

Communication and Collaboration.

Collaboration has always been invaluable in the creation and development of KB+ and in the new release changes have been made to the dashboard in order that we can provide

  • key information requiring action clearly
  • the ability to track information to suit your workflow
  • forums for further discussion regarding the content in KB+

This screencast introduces the KB+ Dashboard

From the dashboard the ‘To Do’ column has information relating to your subscriptions. This column provides links to packages where you will then be prompted to accept or decline changes. For example this could include new title additions to a package, title edits etc.

There is a column for announcements which could be either from the data managers regarding addition of new content or from the system itself about any amendments made to packages.

The third column shows the latest discussions related to a package, these discussions take place on a third party system called Zendesk. Zendesk offers the ability to track discussions per package either by RSS or email alerts as well as allow you to contribute your comments. As information about new packages and amendments to packages is also automatically posted to special discussion threads you can subscribed to these announcements via email or RSS as well.

I am really excited about this development as I think it will be of great benefit to the KB+ community and help meet our aspiration of a central source of institutional data shared across all stakeholders.

Further details and support regarding the dashboard and Zendesk is available at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/communication-and-collaboration-in-kb/

JUSP

Another successful collaboration has been with JUSP, in the new release we will be able to provide, where available, the JR1 and JR1A usage statistics for titles within KB+ (please note this functionality will be available w/c 29th September). We anticipate that this is just the start of the integration between the systems.

As the inclusion of usage statistics within KB+ is intended to support renewals and related workflows, the JR1/JR1A statistics are included in the Renewals spreadsheets generated by KB+.

Manage Menu

The manage menu should now include all the core areas relating to the system, a new addition include the ability to generate spreadsheets which can be exported from the system, edited and then re-imported using the “Generate Subscription Taken Worksheet” and ‘Import Subscription Taken Worksheet’ functions. These work in a similar way to the existing ‘Renewals’ functionality, but do not require you to have an existing subscription to start from.

User Profile Page

Changes to this page include the ability for an editor at an institution to manage all its users and assign the appropriate status for those using the system. This increased flexibility will hopefully allow you manage the system more effectively for your workflows. Further information about the Profile Page is available at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/basics-and-first-time-setup/profile-settings/

You can now also select ‘Data Transformations’ which allows you to choose which format you want to use to export data from KB+. The formats we are supporting with the launch of v3.3 are formats for two of the major link resolvers/KnowledgeBases – Serials Solutions 360 and SFX. These are available for immediate use, we are working with Serials Solutions and  Ex Libris to identify suitable partner sites to test them fully and to define and refine workflows between KB+ and vendor knowledgebases. Any feedback on these is welcome, and we will be adding further export formats in the near future. If there are any particular formats you would like to see, please let us know.

Licences

We are now able to load ONIX licences into KB+ ,which will commence shortly, once the licenses are loaded you will be able to view and compare usage terms helping you to evaluate the collections.

Support documentation including information on these new features is available at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/

KB+ Release 3

KB+ is now on release 3 with more improvements and changes to the system. The one that has had the biggest impact on me is the updated search function.

Building on the popular comparison basket search function it is now possible to search all the packages within KB+ from the same looking screen. Alongside a simple name search there is now the option to filter the results by year, consortia and content provider making it easier to get to the package you want.

screen shot of package search

As we continue to add more packages to the system, some of our recent additions include Elsevier Freedom Collection, Elsevier Subject Collections, Annual Reviews, Taylor and Francis, Jstor, efficient navigation becomes essential.

Creating subscriptions has also been simplified. Your starting point is creating a subscription with a name and reference that is appropriate to your collection. You can then link it to the relevant package, if available in KB+, using a similar search  as above.

screenshot Create Subscriptionscreen shot of link package

You can also view a full list of current or past titles that you subscribe to in KB+ including subscription information. You are therefore able to see titles which appear in more than one package.

screen shot title list

The help guides will be updated to reflect the changes although this is taking a little longer owing to the size of the changes. We do however have some short screen casts below providing all the information you need and if you have any comments or queries please drop us an email

KBPlus: Package Search and Display 

KBPlus: Creating Subscriptions

KBPlus: Titles Listing

Whats in KB+ Release 2.1

I have been looking forward to release 2.1 of KB+ as it includes improvements to the way we upload data and greater flexibility in terms of editing the information once it is in the system.

Uploading packages (for Datamangers only)

The new upload feature provides greater efficiency in automating some basic data formatting  greater flexibility in terms of adding different types of data including ebooks and greater feedback on any issues found with the data allowing us to troubleshoot more effectively.

Editing

There are now more opportunities to edit information which is useful especially for those packages where titles are continually added, for changes to start dates etc. Editable fields now appear as underlined with a dotted line and simply click to edit. Editable fields with no data appear with the label ‘Empty’ simply click on the work ‘Empty’ to edit, you will be prompted to save save/cancel changes by clicking on the tick or cross icon. You can edit “Date fields” by choosing a date from a calendar, or by typing a date directly in YYYY-MM-DD format. Clicking the ‘Month and Year’ twice on the calendar also allows you to change years easily.

KB+ screenshot showing editing

Lists of Subscriptions can be filtered by date.

The current default now displays subscription that are ‘valid’ today. If you want to see Subscriptions valid in the past or future simply type in a date using the format YYYY/MM/DD. This date filter can also be combined with the existing keyword search option. I think this improves the usability of the system in ensuring you can see the most relevant data.

KB+ screenshot of date filter

Search on SUNCAT

You can check other journal details such as change of titles etc from a link to the SUNCAT records for that title.

KB+ Screen shot showing Suncat link

Documentation will be updated to reflect these changes shortly and as always we welcome you feedback on these new changes.

Release 2 of KB+ Meeting

On Wednesday we had our first meeting showing the brand new features Release 2 of KB+. There were presentations during the day from some of the many partners working on KB+, Liam (JISC Collections), Owen (Owen Stephens Consulting) and David (Sero Consulting).

KB+ is a community driven project as highlighted by the range of people involved, JISC, JISC Collections, EDINA, MIMAS, Sero, GOKb, Knowledge Integration Ltd, not to mention those institutions using KB+ and groups such as SCONUL. Much of the functionality and features within KB+ are as of a direct result of collaboration with institutions and throughout the day there was a call for further input and participation.

Liam started the day with an overview of KB+ and it was great to see the growing interest from the community. JISC have added further resource to the project with the addition of new data managers (of which I am one) to work on loading more packages within the knowledge base and helping institution switch on their subscriptions taken. Future plans for KB+ include looking into ebooks and open access however further investigation into the most useful and effective method to collate and present this information is yet required.

Key Dates

Key Dates

Owen was next up providing a live demo of the new functionality in release 2 of KB+ including the new permissions model, adding organisation and role information to licenses and subscriptions and supporting the renewal cycle. Prior to the demo Owen provided an overview to the terminology and structure of the system. With regards to the renewal cycle they worked closely with Kings College London, University of Huddersfield and University of Stirling to gain a good understanding of their workflows & ensure the system can support it. Owen described the work flow to renewals as ‘Collect, Compare. Correct and Commit’, a description of the workflow is available at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/kb-discussion-documents/renewals/
The  new renewals basket feature within KB+ allows you to compare one package title list with another once satisfied they can be marked as renewed and loaded back into the system. JISC Collections are working on uploading the 2013 collection currently (blog post on progress, to follow) but will also be looking at the 2014 titles and non-NESLI publishers. With the greater content there will be more opportunity to fully exploit all the new features of release 2. Feedback on the new functionality was requested including suggestions for improvements or additional data. (A screencast of Owen’s presentation will be available shortly)

David led the afternoon session talking about developments for the year including release 3 where ‘Improvement’, ‘Integration’ and ‘Collaboration & Community’ were all key elements. Greater integration with other services such as JUSP, ELCat, link resolvers etc are essential to making KB+ more effective and fitting more closer with the requirements and workflows of institutions. Building on the key theme of the day of encouraging institutions to communicate and collaborate we were divided into groups and worked on an exercise to provide user stories on how institutions would like to be communicated with and on what topics.These stories will provide the developers with valuable insight with regards to new features in KB+

The value of the KB+ lies within the knowledge and experience of the community it serves and therefore we are keen to hear from institutions about their workflows, requirement, suggestions and possible collaborations.

What’s in Release 2 of KB+

We’ve just made Release 2 of KB+ available, which is the culmination of work that started as soon as we made R1 available last September.

This update contains some significant enhancements including:

  •  A facility for Jisc Collections staff to add new Packages and Subscriptions offered to the system
  • Support for ‘renewals’. This is documented at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/renewing-a-subscription/. This is the first release of the renewals functionality, and we will be looking for feedback so we can improve the process in future releases.
  • New ‘core’ properties. We had some very strong feedback that KB+ should support some more properties related to ‘core’ journals. After the update you will be able to record not only that a title is a ‘core’ title, but also what type of subscription is ‘core’ (Print, Print+Electronic or Electronic – or just a plain Yes or No if you want), and the date at which the title started and stopped being core for you. These ‘core’ properties have been added to the main ‘Subscription Details’ screen.
  • New ‘Issue Entitlement’ full display. On the Subscription details screen KB+ lists the details of the journals included in the subscription with some brief details (the start and end dates for coverage in the subscription, and as just noted the new ‘core’ properties). However KB+ has more information which there is simply not room to display in this simple list. In order to ensure all the relevant information is available we have introduced a new ‘Issue Entitlements’ display. You access it by clicking on the Journal title from the Subscriptions page (this previously took you to the journal online – this link is now next to the title labelled ‘host link’). On the new page you can see the full details for the journal within your subscription, and in the parent ‘package’ (so you can easily compare your coverage details with the package default), as well as displaying details of other packages where the same journal title is available – allowing you to easily see alternative routes of access. The full details of this new screen are documented at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/subscriptions/issue-entitlement-display/
  • Change notifications. These were introduced in the last update, but have now been extended. Most updates to a Template licence, including changes to the Key Values, will create a change notification on any linked Actual licences. More details are available at https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/licences/updates-to-template-licences/
  • This update also includes a number of small enhancements to the UI – including more concise and consistent date formats (yyyy/mm/dd throughout) and default sort orders for some lists. We have some further enhancements identified but that we were unable to get into this release

We’ve updated the online documentation in line with the changes and as previously this is available from https://knowledgebaseplus.wordpress.com/kb-support/

Thank to everyone who has given feedback on KB+ to date, and helped us test and develop the system. Of course we have tested all the updates going intothe release, but if you notice any oddities or issues after the update tomorrow, please let us know via kbplus@jisc-collections.ac.uk