We have made a few recent changes to the VTechWorks website.
To make the website easier to use on smaller screens, we’ve removed the word cloud and moved the search box to the top of the home page, http://vtechworks.lib.vt.edu/. The search box is larger. To its left, we’ve added a drop down menu with a selection of search types. This list includes several new searches: “Subject,” “ETD Advisor,” and “ETD Department.” The “Keyword” search now searches all metadata fields. We have also increased the font size and contrast in the navigation bar.
Each community and collection now displays an item count. On the “Communities & Collections” page, http://vtechworks.lib.vt.edu/community-list, the communities and collections list can be expanded and collapses, as desired.
DSpace is the software that VTechWorks, the institutional repository, is based upon.
There is a demonstration version of DSpace 4, the next release, set up at demo.dspace.org. The DSpace 4 Testathon runs from November 4th to November 15, 2013. During the Testathon, everyone is encouraged to visit the demonstration system and look for bugs and other issues.
A new feature has been added to VTechWorks in support of the open access policy that was recently approved by the Library Faculty Association. Occasionally, authors and journal publishers will agree that an “embargo” period should pass before an article is made available to the general public in an institutional repository.
A new collection has recently been added to VTechWorks, the institutional repository hosted by the University Libraries at Virginia Tech. The collection, Computer Science Technical Reports, is a set of approximately 1,000 open access reports from the computer science department going back from 1973 until today.
VTechWorks, the institutional repository at Virginia Tech, now supports captions and subtitles in its video playback feature. Video titles can help support information access for speakers of alternate languages and for the deaf.
One short sample video (the April 16 2007 tribute) with captions enabled is now online. Captions will appear automatically in the video playback window in VTechWorks.
In order to enable captions, a WebVTT file must be submitted to the VTechWorks item containing the video. The file is a simple, text based format with a list of time codes and captions. If you are curious about the file format, download the WebVTT file for the sample here; the strange looking symbols in this example represent a musical note symbol in the captions.
VTechWorks now has a collection of video lectures from the computer science department’s spring 2012 seminar series. The seminars are lectures given by invited experts in cutting edge computer science research.
Work on this collection was made possible by a collaboration with undergraduate students in Ed Fox’s computer science class last semester, who delivered the files in a format suitable for web playback, and made interface and repository integration recommendations.
VTechWorks, the institutional repository at Virginia Tech, has a collection where university employees can put their academic and creative works to preserve them and make them publicly available. Although the collection is called Faculty Archives, the repository is open for all Virginia Tech people.
We are actively encouraging submissions to this collection, and Nathan has conducted training sessions on how to use this feature of the repository. Each submitting person receives his or her own area in which to place papers, slide shows, video files, and other digital objects.
Self-submission of published papers to a repository is a good way to support open access. Even though not all journals are not open access journals, the majority of traditional journals now allow authors to deposit a preprint into a repository, even if the author has not specifically negotiated for that right.
The Digital Library and Archives unit is running a test for inline playback of videos within VTechWorks. The playback is meant to work with iPads and other modern mobile devices with high speed connections, as well as common desktop web browsers.