Archive for the ‘ltfl’ Category

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

Heading to Dallas (visit us at ALA Midwinter!)

Kate and I will be at ALA Midwinter in Dallas this weekend, stop by to say hi! We’ll be at booth 1650.

The exhibits are open from the evening of Friday the 20th through the afternoon of Monday the 23rd. If you’re in the area and weren’t planning on attending, we can offer some free passes to the exhibit hall (note, this will ONLY get you into the exhibit hall, not any of the conference sessions). Click here to get a free exhibit pass.

We also have a series of improvements and features we’re adding to Library Anywhere and to the LibraryThing for Libraries enhancements–watch the blog for more, or stop by the booth for a preview!

Labels: ALA midwinter, librarything for libraries, ltfl

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

New “theme” for Shelf Browse

We recently added a new metal shelf look for our LibraryThing for Libraries Shelf Browse enhancement. Now you have a choice between a wooden shelf and this new silver “metal” one! Because a picture is worth a thousand words, here are a few screenshots of the same shelf in both themes.

If your library already subscribes to the Shelf Browse enhancement for your catalog you can turn it on easily (just use the “Shelf Theme” dropdown on the Configuration page for Shelf Browse).

Learn more
Email me ( with any questions about this any of the LibraryThing for Libraries OPAC enhancements, or our mobile product, Library Anywhere! To subscribe, contact Peder Christensen at Bowker—toll-free at 877-340-2400 or email

We also do weekly webinars to show off both Library Anywhere and all the LibraryThing for Libraries enhancements for your library catalog (tags, similar books, other editions, series, awards, shelf browse, reviews, and Lexile measures)! Click here to register. On the WebEx registration page, under Attend a Meeting click “Browse Meetings” and then “Monthly” to register for scheduled webinars.

Labels: librarything for libraries, ltfl, shelf browse

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

LibraryThing for Libraries International

We’ve recently added a series of improvements to the LibraryThing for Libraries OPAC enhancements, in an attempt to make them more useful and friendly to a non-English audience.

Header text
The header for each enhancement (e.g. “Tags” or “Similar books”) has always been editable, so you can label the Similar books enhancement “You might also like” or “recommended books”. Or, maybe title it “Lignende titler” or “Soortgelijke boeken” or “Liknande böcker” or “Obras similares.”

Translation of all English text
We’ve recently added the ability to let libraries translate the entire interface of the LTFL enhancements. All the text in the reviews lightbox, for example, or in the tag browser. See the below screenshot of the tag browser in a German library.

To use the translation feature, log into your LTFL account and click the Enhancements tab. Click on “Edit/Translate Interface” under the Configure section, and start translating!

Language preferences
When multiple editions of a work are available at your library, LibraryThing for Libraries picks the most popular edition. We’ve just added the ability to preference certain languages. This lets you, for example, pick a less popular German edition over a more popular English one. In the screenshot above, note that it’s pointing to “Sakrileg” by Dan Brown (instead of the English edition, “The Da Vinci Code”).

To enable language preferences, log into your LTFL account and click the Enhancements tab. Then navigate to Global configuration, and scroll down to the new field titled “Edition language preference.” Here you can enter a comma-separated list of MARC language names (e.g., ger, fre) that will control which edition of a work is displayed.

About LibraryThing for Libraries: LibraryThing for Libraries (LTFL) is a system of OPAC enhancements, designed to make your OPAC more engaging and informative. LibraryThing for Libraries enhancements include Tags, Reviews, Similar Books, Shelf Browse, Series, Awards, Lexile measures and Other Editions. We also offer Library Anywhere, a full-featured mobile catalog and website for any OPAC.

To subscribe to LibraryThing for Libraries, contact Peder Christensen at Bowker—toll-free at 877-340-2400 or email

If you already subscribe to one of the LTFL enhancements and would like some help configuring translation settings, email

Labels: international, languages, librarything for libraries, ltfl, translation

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

LibraryThing for Libraries in VuFind

I’m happy to announce that the LibraryThing for Libraries enhancements for your catalog are now available in VuFind.

You can see the LTFL “catalog enhancements” (other editions, similar books (recommendations), and tags) live in the Swansea University’s catalogue.

LibraryThing for Libraries has a total of nine different OPAC enhancements to pick and choose from: Tags, Lexile® Measures, Other Editions, Reviews, Shelf Browse, Similar Books, Series, Awards and QR Codes. It works on a wide variety of systems—all the major OPACs and many of the minor ones as well. See all the libraries using LTFL here.

Labels: librarything for libraries, ltfl, VuFind

Friday, June 24th, 2011

The Perfect Library Catalog?

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the perfect library catalog. That is, it uses all nine LibraryThing for Libraries OPAC enhancements—Tags, Lexile® Measures, Other Editions, Reviews, Shelf Browse, Similar Books, Series, Awards and QR Codes. All together, we’ve turned an ordinary Webpac library catalog into a social, shareable, graphical, informational and mobile beast!(1)

(Click to see full-size)

Great as it is, this catalog doesn’t exist. Abby and I are working on new handouts for LibraryThing for Libraries and Library Anywhere. For the former we needed a library that used all our enhancements, including a new one we’re announcing today (QR Codes). Unfortunately, although more than 200 library systems use LibraryThing for Libraries to make their OPACs better (a full list), none have absolutely every one of them today. So we’ve made our own, leaning heavily on the excellent Chemeketa Cooperative Regional Library Service, which has almost all our enhancements.

If you’re in New Orleans for the American Library Assocation, come visit us at booth 827. We’ll show you how to make your catalog as good as this one! Or better, because it will actually exist. Oh, and pick up one of our nifty badge thingies.

1. If it had a search bar it would be truly perfect.

Labels: librarything for libraries, ltfl, ltfl libraries

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Introducing Series and Awards

We’ve added a new enhancement to LibraryThing for Libraries, which combines two complementary enhancements: Series and Awards.

The Series enhancement draws from more than 50,000 series, and displays it right in the catalog. We provide a short description of the series (where available) and any related series (for example, The Chronicles of Narnia in both chronological order and in publication order).

For a given book, we display the name of the series and then the titles of all the books within that series. As with all the LTFL enhancements, each title links to that book’s page within your catalog.

See, for example, the page for Thursday Next in Lost in a good book in the Chemeketa Cooperative Regional Library Service Catalog. The series enhancement (displayed on the left-hand side) tells you this book is in the Thursday Next series. Click that series name and you see the series browser, which displays all the titles in that series, and links to each book in the library’s catalog.  If a library doesn’t have a given book, we still list it, but without a link.

Chemeketa has chosen just to show the title of the series in the catalog, but you can also configure the enhancement to show a few “preview titles” and then a show more button which launches the series browser (as in the Pink Carnation screenshot to the right).

Some more examples of the Series enhancement in action on these book pages:

The Awards enhancement taps into more than 25,000 awards and honors. It covers a huge range of awards, from the National Book Award and the Booker Prize to the Salon Book Award and New York Times Notable Book of the Year, or even Oprah’s Book Club selections.

See the awards on these books:

Put it in your OPAC
For ordering information contact Peder Christensen at Bowker—toll-free at 877-340-2400 or email

Questions? email me (

Labels: awards, librarything for libraries, ltfl, series

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

LTFL new grid display option

We’ve added a new and attractive way to display LTFL enhancements within your library catalog—we call it grid display. Basically, it lets you set a number of rows and columns, and display the data in a grid format. You can also try using  just one row and several columns to create a horizontal look. Ah, the possibilities are endless!

To turn it on: In the LTFL admin pages, click to the Configure page for one of the enhancements (Grid display works for Similar books and for Other editions and translations). Then just click yes to turn it on, and set the number of rows and columns you want. That’s it!

Screenshots: For contrast, below is the same set of similar books, shown in our original classic list view and in list view with covers (Turn covers on!).

Labels: librarything for libraries, ltfl

Friday, January 7th, 2011

ALA Midwinter 2011

Jeremy and I are headed to San Diego today (yes we were both awake by 3am) for ALA Midwinter! I’ll be demoing LibraryThing for Libraries and Jeremy will be helping out when he’s not running around talking to publishers. If you’re at ALAMW, come by and say hi—booth 2823.

I have a slew of new and notable LibraryThing for Libraries enhancements to show off:

Labels: ALAMW11, librarything for libraries, ltfl

Friday, January 7th, 2011

LTFL Improvement-Material Type in Other editions

Another new LibraryThing for Libraries improvement! At the request of one library, we added the ability to replace the ISBN displayed with each “other edition and translation” with the media type for it.

So instead of this: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Clarke, Susanna. (ISBN 1593977417)
You’ll see something like this: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Clarke, Susanna. [Book On CD]

See it in action at Ventura County Library, here

A big caveat—this feature is currently only available for libraries that subscribe to the Shelf Browse enhancement, or for libraries that can export their data as full MARC records. I know, seemingly unrelated, but it has to do with the way and the amount of data we index. For the curious, we’re using media types from the leader and 008 of the MARC record.

Want it?
Just email me! (

Labels: librarything for libraries, ltfl

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Add covers to your LTFL enhancements

We’ve added a little cover image eye-candy to the LTFL Catalog Enhancements. You can now choose to display cover images along with the title/author text. You can turn on cover images for Similar books, Other editions and translations, and in tag browser. In the tag browser, you can also choose to display a mini tag cloud for each book in the list, to give it a little context.

Because a picture is worth a thousand words (click to see larger images):

Without covers With covers

If you already have Catalog Enhancements in your catalog, here’s how to turn it on:
1. In the LTFL admin pages, go to your Global Configuration page and fill in the cover image URL line. It uses whatever covers your library already uses in your OPAC (Syndetics, Content Cafe, etc.)

2. Go to each enhancement’s configure page and click the “Show Covers” box, or the “Show Mini Tag Cloud in Tags Browser” box.

Labels: covers, librarything for libraries, ltfl