Det ny musikbibliotek

Student thesis: Master programme thesis

  • Georgios Skouros
4. term, Master of ICT and Learning (MIL) (Continuing education) (Continuing Education Programme (Master))
This work is a Master Dissertation for the Master in ICT and Learning course at Aalborg University. It is inspired by a collaborative pilot project between the Music Department of Odense County Library and B&O, a Hi-Fi producer. The author, a librarian, has been involved during this pilot project with the design and evaluation of a user interface for the library catalogue (OPAC), whose purpose was to enrich the user experience through user collaboration and extended browsing capabilities. The initial design process consisted of a brainstorm and analysis of user and music characteristics. Based on this analysis paper mock-ups of a “Table Top” user interface were drawn and presented to six library users who agreed to an interview. The findings suggest that library users are excited about browsing through graphical metaphors in bibliographical and user generated metadata but express doubt as to whether they would use the possibilities for collaboration and Information Retrieval interaction with other users. The implications of the author’s assumption that the OPAC is a central, though insufficient instrument for Information Retrieval were thereafter investigated. Through a study of Library and Information Science traditions and discourse and of the development of social technologies it is pointed out that while the first favour a systemic approach to Music Information Retrieval, where the documents characteristics are in focus (user seeks document), the later favour users’ assumptions about documents (document seeks user). As an experiment the author conducted two surveys where anonymous library users were asked to tag some of the music offered by the library. The first survey was conducted by sending tags by mail to the author and the second by tagging on bulletin boards in the library. Even though a small number of users responded, it is assumed that a broader interest would develop if there was an explicit information gain for the user. A last survey in the form of an interview with two librarians was then conducted. The librarians’ main concern about user involvement in tagging catalogue metadata indexed by librarians is the loss of quality and validity of this metadata. User involvement is mainly looked upon as “information noise”, in the absence of a controlled vocabulary. Indexing of other than strictly bibliographical user generated metadata is not considered an advantage compared to the risk. The suggested OPAC user interface is being appreciated for its entertainment value but is otherwise regarded as not suitable for their work except probably during the course of “reference interviews” as a supporting tool for the user-librarian dialogue. The implications of all the above are discussed and it is among else suggested that librarians investigate the possibilities of adding user value feedback parameters to documents through the use of collaborative –user generated and librarian indexed- vocabularies.
Publication date2007
Number of pages57
Publishing institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 13067812