Dartmouth College Library is in the beta-testing phase of a new search engine, Summon, and is asking for your feedback on the service. Take Summon for a test drive this month and share your thoughts in a three-minute survey at www.dartmouth.edu/~library/home/find/summon.
Summon is fast and works like Google, notes Cynthia Pawlek, deputy librarian of the College. Users start from a single search box, while behind the scenes, Summon gathers, regularizes, and indexes the content of the search from library approved sources, delivering the results back to the user.
Unlike Google, however, Summon searches the world-class collection of scholarship and related materials developed and maintained by Dartmouth’s librarians. It’s “not the ‘anything goes’ that we’re used to on the Internet,” says Noah Lowenstein, physical sciences librarian and chair of the Summon outreach team.
Summon also “gives the user a direct line to the actual scholarly material. It sends users straight to the full text of articles, to eBooks, to catalog records for physical books in our collection—whatever information is needed to connect you to the scholarship,” he notes.
And because Dartmouth is a beta test partner for Summon, comments from members of the College community go straight to the product developers. “This is a chance for Dartmouth to shape the future of search,” says Lowenstein.
Dartmouth is joining Cornell, Harvard, MIT, and UC Berkeley in expressing support for making scholarly publishing openly accessible to as wide an audience as possible. Each institution will provide financial support for publishing in scholarly journals that are committed to free, open access on the Internet.
In announcing the compact to the faculty, Provost Barry Scherr wrote, “We value the contribution that the publication process brings to the final scholarly work, as demonstrated by our long-term support of established journals, and want to support creative alternatives to traditional models. We believe that our participation will advance our collective goals.”
Learn more at www.dartmouth.edu/~library/schcomm.
By KELLY SEAMAN
Last Updated: 9/28/09