Minutes of October 15, 1998 Meeting

K-N. Au, J. Boyle, H. Glazer, T. Haynes, R. Jantz, M. Kesselman, S. McDonald, J. Mi, S. Perkins, M. Witteman Absent: R. Gardner, D. Hoover, P. Piermatti

Materials distributed: Agenda, proposed WAC description, report of WAC activities for 1997/98, Web support timeline, position description for Webmaster

Jeanne Boyle welcomed everyone and outlined outstanding issues and possible work processes. Areas covered included general policies and objectives, subject Web guides, search engine for site, electronic journals, services and other Web page uses, long range plan activity to create a database of university Web resources, processes for identifying Web information needs, work includes both presentation and content, copyright and permissions, partnering with the Webmaster. She observed that the group would meet the challenges ahead 100% because of the good will and resources available.

During the discussion that followed, it was recommended that it would take about 1.5 years to really make our Web site work for us and that we need to establish priorities for that work. The most intense time of work for WAC in the past was when development first began, and it is time to renew our efforts. An issue to resolve will be the number of links on the top page and how that effects our desired click depth. It is time to redo our overall look and feel. There are a number of questions to articulate and answer, such as:

To elect a chair, each member will send first and second choice votes from the total membership to Steve Perkins (sperkins@andromeda, use "WAC Chair" as the subject line).

The role of the Webmaster was discussed. Sam McDonald can develop templates for updating pages. He can code very fast and prefers electronic input. There was general agreement that the purpose of our pages is to guide to both Rutgers and Web information. An example of an area to explore is the relationship between subject guides and subject Web guides and how they are presented. They can be separate works with cross-links or can be interspersed (see new guide on scholarships and fellowships available from the Alexander Library home page). The possibilities are endless with hypertext. We need to consider linking to good pages developed elsewhere rather than replicating them. Our pages will have to appeal to the lowest common denominator of user and user equipment, which currently still includes Lynx users.

The committee began a discussion of dividing the work ahead by "information stream". There are three main "information streams": structural, content, and operational. Specifics include: the overall look and feel of RUL pages, subject Web guides, training, new content, relation to academic department pages, standards, the digital library initiative, ejournals, operational needs (circulation, etc.). The group will eventually divide into subgroups with responsibility for the various "information streams".

The next meeting will be a whole committee meeting to consider a new overall look and feel for the top pages and subject guides and determine how the work will be divided. Sam McDonald will post URL's for good and not so good Web sites the committee to review. The meeting will take place within the next two weeks in a location with workstations, probably a SCC IHL. [Note: next meeting scheduled for October 30, 9 am, SCC 415.]

Submitted by,
Jeanne Boyle

URL: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/rul/staff/groups/web_advisory/minutes/wacmin_98_10_15.shtml
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