Posts filed under 'Expanded Services'

LibX Firefox Extension Now Available

LibX is an open source framework, originally developed by Annette Bailey and Godmar Back at the Virginia Tech University Libraries.

We’ve created a J. Paul Leonard Library edition of the LibX Firefox toolbar. The basic idea is that once you download and install LibX you essentially take the Library with you no matter where you browse. Anytime a book is mentioned, on any site, you can quickly check whether we have it in the Library, or whether you can find it through WorldCat. You can also search for an author name, or keyword, in Google Scholar, or our SmartStart set of databases, to see the related scholarly literature, then find references in one of the Library’s 200+ databases, or 20,000+ electronic journals.

To use LibX, you need to download and install it. (As of June 16, 2008, LibX is only available for Firefox 3.x (download at Mozilla), although an IE version is in the works. Firefox 2.x users of LibX 1.2.2 must install both FF 3.0 and LibX 1.5.4 at the links above, as FF will not automatically update)

Let us know what you think about LibX.

Add comment June 18th, 2008

e-Books in the Library

ebookThere are over 9,000 full text electronic books currently in the Library collections.

Many of these e-books are available through deals negotiated by the CSU with companies such as NetLibrary and Safari Tech Books Online. These e-books have come as packaged “collections” and the Library has only had limited input on what titles were included. Browse the SF State NetLibrary site or Safari Tech Books Online to get a feel for the variety and depth of these collections. You can also find all of these titles in the Library Catalog.

Recently the Library has started to work with book provider Blackwell North America, and e-book publisher Ebrary so that Subject Librarians can order e-books on a title-by-title basis. Since the Library has started to do this there have been nearly 700 new e-book titles added to the collection covering a variety of subject areas. Library users who are interested in looking at these titles can go to the Library Catalog and perform a “keyword” search on the term “ebrary”.

In addition to providing the complete full text, e-books contain a number of useful electronic enhancements. These include searching, highlighting passages, attaching notes to texts and looking up words in a dictionary or encyclopedia. It is our hope in that in the near future the Library can add other e-book providers to this project as we continue to expand our electronic collections.

Let us know how you feel about e-books. Do you enjoy reading them? Do you think they enhance your, or your students, educational experience?

Add comment April 18th, 2008

Improved Instant Messaging

IMInstant Messaging (IM) can now be used for general library questions as well as research assistance. The service now uses a pop-up browser so you can continue your Library website session without losing your IM session helper. Find the IM button on pages where you are likely to have questions like the Find Articles and Databases page. The service is available only during library hours. All you need is a computer connected to the internet. Try it.

2 comments March 14th, 2008

Library of Congress experimenting with Flickr

Door and window in a Spanish-American home, Costilla, New Mexico (LOC)Here’s a great example of a major cultural organization experimenting with Web 2.0. The Library of Congress has recently started using Flickr to expand awareness of their collections, and to solicit the more active engagement of viewers.

“The Library of Congress invites you to explore history visually by looking at interesting photos from our collections. Please add tags and comments, too! More words are needed to help more people find and use these pictures.”

Initial photo sets include “1930s-40s in Color” (with photos from the Farm Security Administration and the Office of War Information) and “News in the 1910s.” The URL for the Library of Congress pilot project on flickr is:

We are exploring putting some images from our special collections in Flickr as well. Stay tuned.

5 comments February 1st, 2008


The J. Paul Leonard Library is one of the first Academic libraries in the United States to add tags and recommendations from LibraryThing to our Online Catalog. For over 190,000 books in our Main Library collection, you can see tags and other recommended books in our collection generated from the data that LibraryThing collects from its 276,000 users.

For example, see the tags for the book, Infotopia in Investigator (click on the “details” tab to see the LibraryThing information). For more detailed information about the theory behind tagging in library catalogs, see the short paper by librarian, John Wenzler. ”


Wenzler, John
Collection Access and Management Services

Add comment November 20th, 2007

New and Improved Research Guides

Looking for the best resources on your subject or major? Need to know where to start your research project? The Library now offers some of its research guides through a new interface called Libguides, a Web 2.0 authoring service that integrates user polls and comments, RSS and podcast feeds, videos, customized search engines, and instant messaging windows in addition to useful web links and textual content into library guides.

Check out these new and improved Libguides on the following subjects:


History: Primary Sources


Criminal Justice

Click here for a list of all SF State Libguides.

Research guides are also available to introduce you to subjects and disciplines, and to help you meet particular research needs related to common assignments at SF State.
For questions about Libguides contact Mira Foster .

Add comment November 20th, 2007

Spotlight Blog Live

The Library Spotlight blog has been live for about a week. We’ll be using it for all manner of Library news and information, including events, exhibits, highlighting new resources and providing updates regarding ongoing projects, such as the Library Renovation & Expansion project. As time goes on, other uses may surface. Let us know if you have any ideas.

Add comment October 8th, 2007

Google Scholar Update

Use Google Scholar to do a broad search for scholarly literature, including peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, abstracts and articles. Now it also automatically connects your searches with our Library resources.

After doing a search, click on the SFSU: Find Full Text link to quickly determine whether you can access the complete document through one of the electronic resources available in the Library. If you are off campus, you’ll have to login with your Library PIN.

Add comment October 5th, 2007

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