Law Society Library online

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Monday the 28th of January saw the launch of a new site from The Law Society library called Law Society Library Online, the site was built in collaboration with LexisNexis.

The site is available free of charge but registering will allow you to access "member only" benefits" which include access to;

  • Queries and Enquiries Database with sources for specific precedents and answers to many legal information enquiries, based on the experience of the Library team.
  • English Cases Index - a case citator updated on a daily basis
  • Commencement Index - an index to UK statutes going back to 1974
  • EU Developments - updates on EU legislation · Free access to a monthly e-mail alert from LexisNexis with 30 hand-picked relevant Stories
  • LexisNexis Butterworths Journals Index, with article abstracts from over 120 journals

Additionally if you already have a subscription to LNB, you will be able to link directly from Law Society Library Online to LNB content.

Posted by James Mullan at 13:16 0 comments  

Transcripts Guide...the Wiki

Tuesday, 29 January 2008

The Inner Temple Library have started the process of updating their guide to finding the Transcripts of Judicial Proceedings in England & Wales. To facilitate the updating of this guide, which will eventually be available in PDF format, the Inner Temple have created a Wiki which all BIALL members are invited to edit or add content as appropriate.

To contribute to the Wiki click on the page you would like to edit, enter your name and email address and the password marblearch99

The Inner Temple have also recently launched a Facebook page for their Library, the page contains photos, newsletters and information on the services provided by the Library, which include their current awareness blog.

Posted by James Mullan at 09:51 2 comments  

BIALL Study Seminar - Edinburgh, December 6 - 7

Friday, 25 January 2008

This year’s study seminar in Edinburgh looked like a Nurofen for my work headaches: targeted relief for pain. And (to rip off another slogan) it did what it said on the tin!

The setting was the wonderful Signet Library in Parliament Square, hosted by Elaine Bird and the BIALL Professional Development Committee. The seminar lasted for a day and a half (with plenty of time before and after for Christmas shopping). Dinner was held at the library itself, a fitting setting for the participants.

Sarah Fahy kicked off the proceedings with a session on Making a Business Case. This was a practical run-through of the many management issues behind decision-making, common to a lot of organisations. Sarah outlined the stages involved in making a business case, from the preparatory work, right through to getting it down on paper. She drew from her own experiences and led the group through some practical exercises to discuss which techniques had proved successful in the past.

The second session was led by Sally Creissen and focused on Library Management Systems. Sally’s talk was a thorough and systematic look at the stages involved in buying and implementing a new LMS. Her handouts, which included a checklist on planning the project; sample system requirements; and a list of suppliers (not endorsed, I should hasten to add); will definitely prove useful when I find myself in the position to buy a new LMS. I use the word ‘when’ since, as we learned on the day, the average age for a LMS is between 8 and 15 years, and I’m a fair way off retirement yet!

On the second day, Jacky Berry gave us an illuminating talk on library design. This was my main reason for attending, since my offices are being refurbished. Jacky spoke about the physical aspects of designing a library, from the height of the bookshelves, to the number of plug sockets. She also gave us a useful outline of the other issues involved in a project like this, particularly those involving people - customers, staff, and stakeholders. I found myself furiously scribbling notes, and am pleased to report that I have now factored these into my requests for the new Library space.

After coffee, we heard from Jenny Barrow who talked about a host of staffing issues. Jenny talked about the importance of timing when making a proposal for more staff; linking the proposal to your firm’s strategy; making the business case; and gave suggestions for what to do if you don’t get your own way. During question time, Jenny talked frankly about her experiences of recruiting and retaining staff, including the sticky subject of money.

Victoria Janetta followed with a talk on measuring the performance of the library. She ran through a number of different techniques for collecting, analysing and presenting statistics. This session certainly made me realise that I should have been collecting statistics, and I will make sure that I am armed with some meaningful ones when it comes to setting my budgets for next year.

The study seminar was concluded with a talk from Penny Bailey on common pitfalls that managers face when trying to get backing for a new project. The session included a look at some common influencing styles and how these might be put to work on the more ‘colourful’ characters in an organisation.
I left Edinburgh full of ideas to transform my library (literally and figuratively), and keen to get started. For me, the real value was in learning about things I hadn’t experienced, or factors I hadn’t thought about - simple things like the plug sockets, or the timing of a project. Many of the situations discussed (designing a library; a new LMS) are real issues in my day-to-day work, so it was very relevant. But, as is so often the case, the opportunity to talk to others with similar issues was also of enormous value.

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Posted on behalf of Hannah Milford.

Transforming Government...Web 2.0 style...

Thursday, 24 January 2008

...there must be something in the air as this is the second reference to Transformers we have made in a month! This is actually the report of an event hosted by the Oxford Internet Institute called Gov 2.0, or Truly Transformative Government The event was an opportunity for delegates to discuss how Government information could be reused to make it more appealing for members of the public.

It would seem the Government is trying to engage members of the public in the same manner as sites like Facebook and itunes have done. It will be interesting to see a full report on the event and how far the Government takes this. The Dissident Blog has a fuller report on the event.

Posted by James Mullan at 17:18 0 comments  

Building a Legal Research toolbar

This article by Jennifer W Greig will be of interest to anyone who is considering developing a search solution that provides access to "sanctioned" resources.

In it the author describes how they designed and eventually delivered the toolbar to their students.

Posted by James Mullan at 17:11 0 comments  

LNB Global Platform Mailing List

Thursday, 17 January 2008

The Legal Information Group will close the Lexis Nexis Butterworths (LNB) Global Platform Mailing List on the 7/2/2008.

This list was established in 2005 for BIALL members to discuss the implementation of the Global Platform. Since then the platform has undergone a number of functional and technical changes which have made it more usable. The number of postings to the list has also dropped significantly in the last year.

If you have any queries regarding the LNB Global Plaform, please email the LIG representative for Lexis Nexis Butterworths (David Percik). David's contact details are available on the BIALL website.

Library 2.0 initiatives in Academic Libraries

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

The Association of Research and College Libraries (ARCL) in the U.S have released a new publication which may be of interest to BIALL members. Entitled "Library 2.0 initiatives in Academic Libraries" this is a hybrid publication which uses a Wiki to display content in chapters. The book is also available to buy online.

ACRL have also recently launched a new blog called ARCL Insider.

Posted by James Mullan at 14:23 0 comments  

Format shifting...

Not as I had hoped the working title of the sequel to Transformers but one of a series of proposals put forward by the UK Goverment as part of its consultation on the future of copyright in the digital age.

"Fomat shifting" if legislated will give greater freedom to consumers to transfer content between CD's and MP3 players and other devices. Other proposals include changes to enable schools and universities to make the most of digital technologies and facilitate distance learning.

Posted by James Mullan at 09:40 0 comments  

OPSI now "as revised"

Friday, 4 January 2008

A recent addition to the OPSI website is the inclusion of "As Revised" statutes, this means that when visting the OPSI Website users have the option to retrieve Statutes as revised as well as enacted. Have a look at the Channel Tunnel Act for an example.

This is the first step in the process of bringing together the two online legislative services that are currently mantained by the UK Government (OPSI and the Statute Law Database)

Posted by James Mullan at 14:12 0 comments