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User Requirements


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Section 3:

CLDs in practice

CLDs in practice: Introduction

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Meeting user requirements

Different users, different displays

A different interface may be appropriate for different users. For instance, there might be one interface for the general public, one for researchers and one for administration purposes. The same set of elements can feed into all three interfaces, which might each have a different look. It is possible to designate some elements to be only visible from, say, the administration interface.

It is therefore important to consider who the users of your database of collection level descriptions will be, and whether there is a single group or a range of groups with different requirements for searching and creating /editing records. For example, the Reveal Collections Register has three interfaces.
· A public search interface with options for both simple and advanced searches, supported by a number of help pages.
· A partner administrative interface with authentication procedure, for Reveal partner organisations, allows them to change data in the majority of elements in order to keep the data up to date.
· An administration interface with authentication procedure for Reveal staff allows them to create new descriptions, remove descriptions of collections no longer available, and make changes to data in any field.

Security issues

Authentication procedures using passwords can be built in to administrative interfaces that allow the data to be updated.

Supporting users in resource evaluation

It may also be appropriate to include in the description an indication of specific educational levels or particular skills that are required to use items in a collection.

Listing Braille in Physical Characteristics would indicate to a potential user that some skill in reading Braille is required to use that collection. Listing Estonian as the Language of items in the collection shows that some proficiency in that language is required to be able to use the collection.

Similarly, Collection Strength can indicate that this is a 'research collection on radio astronomy' and therefore of little use to the general enquirer. If appropriate data cannot be held in such fields, it can be included in the Notes field - but any such note should be phrased in an objective way.

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Content by: Shirley Keane of UKOLN.
Page last revised on: 11-Aug-2003
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