Thursday, January 6, 2011

electronic catalogs

There is something deeply, deeply flawed with an ILS where I can type in "The Sound and the Fury" (in quotes!) and the book copy of the work is #10 on the results page (at least the first result was related to Faulkner; I cannot seem to reproduce the input, but I swear I looked up either the author or title at one point where the first result to come up was a book titled "Onassis"...of course, if I try to look up that work, it's impossible to find). I was so frustrated having to scroll down to find the results for things I'd typed in perfectly. I cannot understand what sort of search algorithm this software is performing on its database, but it seems as if there is something seriously off. I don't know if it's SirsiDynix itself (the ILS software creator), or if it's just that Connect (one of CT's library consortiums) hasn't upgraded its software to the latest & greatest, but I intend to find out. Somehow. Sometime. And do something about it.

I am so tempted to apply for one of the developer jobs in Utah, but...1. it's Utah, and 2. I vowed I'd never go back to being a code monkey again. That's why I moved to librarianship - I wanted to get out of the mire of endless lines of C++ (or Java, or etc.). But at the same time, I have this feeling that I've got a great stradding-the-fence skill set which would be awesome to use to improve electronic catalogs. I love databases. I just don't know if I want to code them for the rest of my life. But I know we can make them do what we need them to do...which to me includes returning the appropriate search results. Hrm.