Friday, 19 March 2010

Blue Pages video clip

As the project will end soon (31st of March) I wanted to show you what we have done so far with the Blue Pages. We will not stop working though. We will continue working on harvesting more data and user engagement. Anusha and Mat have been working tirelessly on the Blue Pages and although there is still a lot of work to be done on it I think it is at a stage where I can show you a short demo. This is a work in progress video and we are using a few sets of harvested data. The video below lasts 3:14 minutes and has no audio.

Open wmv version on a separate window.

Monday, 8 March 2010

BRII Presentation

On Friday 5th of March I attended a book launch at the University of Hull - Business School. The book is titled "Supporting research students" by Dr Barbara Allan.

"The importance of supporting the needs of research students has recently risen higher up the academic agenda around the world. Numbers of postgraduate students have expanded, and the traditional PhD has now been joined by a new range of doctoral qualifications including professional doctorates. These developments have led to a more diverse student body which now includes senior professional practitioners. This shift has been accompanied by a recognition that universities must encourage library and information staff to make their critical contribution to students' research skill. This timely book offers guidance to enable them to support the specialist needs of these students."

The event was launched by Biddy Fisher, President of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and Emeritus Professor Patsy Cullen, Board Member of the Museum, Libraries and Archives Council.

During the event Dr Allan presented her current project called the Graduate Virtual Research Environment, an online environment inviting Phd students and research staff in the Business School to share and learn from each others experiences. Then Dr Chris Thomson ran a demo of the environment. He writes a blog here.

After their presentation I gave a short talk about BRII. I talked about the entity registry trying not to use too technical language ;) and about how Research Activity Data (RAD) can be used in the Blue Pages, to design websites, in ORA, etc. I made emphasis on how RAD can complement research students' learning by providing overviews of what experts are doing in their fields of research. Here you have my presentation.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Project Evaluation

We just finished our Project Evaluation report. The project's summative evaluation took place on the 19th of February and was directed by Neil Beagrie from Charles Beagrie Ltd. As part of this evaluation Neil ran an online survey with a sample of our interviewees and testers. The results were very positive. We chose people who knew about BRII and who had at least seen a demo or tested the Blue Pages. The reason for this was that we needed respondents who understood the basic concepts of BRII’s entity registry and RAD (Research Activity Data) and and were able to assess the potential benefits that sharing and re-using RAD could have for the University.

For the purpose of the survey we asked respondents to have a look at the working version of the Blue Pages. As this tool is still under development we have limited access only from Oxford networks. However I also compiled a series of screenshots for respondents who were not on campus. You can see the status of the Blue Pages six weeks ago.

and these are the results of the survey (click on + to zoom in):