Building Data Management Services at Johns Hopkins University

October 21st, 2012

Barbara Pralle and Sayeed Choudhury presented at the Coalition for Networked Information in Fall 2011 (slides are available online). The JHU Data Management services group was launched in July 2011 to provide data management planning support to JHU PIs preparing NSF proposals and to make available data management and archiving services, using systems developed by the Data Conservancy.  This presentation will describe the unique aspects of the Data Conservancy System as a data archive. The process that was used to establish the service model including the financial model will also be discussed as well as well as factors that continue to shape service development.

Empowering Copyright Role Models

April 18th, 2012

On April 18th, librarians Carrie Bertling Disclafani and Renee Hall presented at the 15th Distance Learning Services Conference in Memphis, Tennessee.

During their presentation, Stop Saying No, Start Empowering Copyright Role Models, they taught how to turn fearful faculty members into empowered copyright role models. They shared the Excelsior College Library’s process for shifting faculty back into the role of decision makers particularly when a copyright policy or department does not exist.

Read the conference proceedings article or view their slide presentation to learn specific examples of how to model good copyright behaviors in online courses and how to empower faculty by stocking their tool boxes and reinforcing library recommendations with staff development webinars.

Data Management Services

April 16th, 2012

Our JHU Data Management Service (DMS) was featured in an article written by Jane Beitler of NSIDC titled “Solving the Data Management Mandate”.

Data Curation Service Models

March 22nd, 2012

On March 22, 2012 Barbara Pralle participated in the Data Curation Services Models Panel at RDAP moderated by Matt Mayernik of National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). This presentation discussed how current data management and curation services at Johns Hopkins were developed by building on experiences of the past fifteen years.  The presentation took a closer look at the JHU Data Management Services, particularly the development with three facets of sustainability (human, technical and financial) in mind. Slides are posted on slideshare.

Choosing a Discovery Tool for YOUR Unique Library

December 13th, 2011

On November 3, 2011, Jennifer Castaldo moderated and presented on a panel at the Charleston Conference. The proceedings paper is currently available online and will be published by Purdue University in October 2012.

Abstract: Our users want an easier way to search library resources and currently there are many discovery tools available, which can seem daunting.  How do you know which one will work for your unique library? Librarians from different types of libraries including an online library, a land-grant school, a law library, a private university, and a consortium, describe how they evaluated the available products and made decisions on which tools to implement.   A variety of platforms are discussed including: Ebsco’s Discovery Service, III’s Encore Synergy Discovery, Serials Solutions’ Summon, and even a homegrown solution.  Discover what libraries are looking for in these tools, strategies for determining which one best fits your needs, and lessons learned throughout the process from the investigation phase to implementation.

Castaldo, J., Dulaney, C.K., Klingler, T., Rossmann, D., & Wrubel, L. (2011, November). Experiences from the field: Choosing a discovery tool for your unique library. Presented at the Charleston Conference, Charleston, SC.

Consider the Alumni Library

December 7th, 2011

In 2011, Distance Education Librarian Patricia Lovett published an editorial in an Elseiver journal. This article is a thought piece about the current status of online alumni libraries—their collections, services, financial and staffing structure, and offers some suggestions and thoughts for future sustainability.

Lovett, P. (2011). Consider the Alumni Library. Serials Review, 37(3), 147-148. doi:10.1016/j.serrev.2011.05.001.

Establishing Data Management Services

October 21st, 2011

On October 31, 2011 Barbara Pralle and Sayeed Choudhury presented at the Digital Library Federation forum.  The presentation is available online. With increasing expectations among funding bodies that researchers establish formal data management plans, Johns Hopkins University has created a set of data management services within a dedicated program to support researchers that leverages the technology developed through the Data Conservancy. These services and the model for providing them were discussed along with factors that shaped service development and considerations for the future.

Presentation: The Value of Virtual Libraries

October 18th, 2011

Several memebers of the ELP team gave a lively presentation to the BioIT Coalititon about the value of having virtual libraries and how they can create effective access to information.

The Value of Virtual Libraries: Creating Effective Access to Information. Presented by Susan Payne, Barbara Pralle, and Judy Smith (November 18, 2008). Location:  JHU Montgomery County Campus.

While this presentation is not online, it illustrates the variety of presentations that ELP undertakes. Examples of topics covered are listed below:

  • Several case studies that illustrate what can happen when libraries or information are not valued, accessible or considered
  • Examples of Virtual Libraries
  • Observations related to inadvertent copyright violation
  • Cost of lost time:  a series of recent studies
  • If you’ve decided a library is important, how do you build the infrastructure for a virtual library,  who needs to be involved?
  • The value of a virtual library and library services

If you would like a similar presentation for your group, please contact us.

This blog will become our ELP presentations and publications page

October 18th, 2011

As the year one for our blog experiment comes to an end, we are transitioning our use of this blog to cover our ELP publications and presentations. If you want to stay abreast of our poster presentations, articles that we publish, and what we’re putting out there — then this is a good page to keep watching. Thanks to those who have followed and read our blog this year.

Screen Captures

September 6th, 2011

Certainly this is nothing new to write about, but I started looking into this because I needed to create some back up screen captures for websites. I had a few things that I wanted to be able to do…first, I wanted to capture full pages with the links…second I wanted to be able to capture by domain (so all of the pages in the hierarchy) at one time. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do the second item…but I did look at a number of software in the process. In the end I used SnagIt, which I already had installed on my computer. There is a small fee for this program, but I also looked at a free option called PDFCreator. While PDFCreator had a number of useful features, it didn’t save links (at least not that I could figure out). This post covers SnagIt and PDFCreator, but it should be noted that there are a lot of other options out there…these are just the two that I liked the best.

SnagIt 10 from TechSmith
Price: Free trial, $50 for a licensed version
Available from:

This is a great program. As with other apps, you can choose exactly how much of the screen you’ll shoot. One of the thing I like best about SnagIt is there are easy short-cuts for capturing either the whole screen, a window, a region, or a scrolling area, with just some considered cursor placement and a single click. The capture profiles are a real time saver. The profile I use the most is the Webpage profile (keep links). With this, I can easily make a back-up image of a wegpage that saves the links and then save it into either PDF, SWF (flash), MHT (web page with Image), or SNAG (the SnagIt Capture file).

In addition to snagging images, Snagit has separate capture settings for copying text and video. It’s pretty cool that you can record your screen’s action in the AVI format. Snagit’s editor has some additional editing tools in this version that allow for further manipulating the text. Snagit image editor stores screenshots in an icon library which makes it easy to review past screen captures.

Though Snagit’s editing tools aren’t as professional as some other high-end editors, it does provide a satisfying array of tools to annotate, resize, recolor, and otherwise manipulate images with hyperlinked hot spots, tags, and visual effects, like the newly introduced page-curl effect.

I think what’s called for here is taking a PDF snapshot of each page.  And luckily, if I recall correctly, our page-naming-convention will come in handy here because each page name is in a hierarchy, so just accepting the default name for each file will result in a set of pages nicely representing the structure of the Website as a whole. This image shows the menu options available in the SnagIt 10 program:


Available from:
Price: free

A colleague recommended PDFCreator as a great freeware that takes PDF Snapshots. This program creates a virtual printer on your Windows computer. When you select it as a printer, it creates a PDF of whatever you’ve selected to print. One nice feature is that it works on any windows application and not just your browser (SnagIt wroks on other apps as well).  One thing I liked best about this program was the ability to merge multiple files into one PDF.

Here is what it looks like when you print a document, you just select PDFCreator as your printer:

Some of the features of this program include:

  • Create PDFs from any program that is able to print
  • Encrypt PDFs and protect them from being opened, printed etc
  • Digitally sign PDFs to ensure that you are the author and the file has not been modified
  • Create PDF/A files for long term archives
  • Send generated files via e-mail
  • Create more than just PDFs: PNG, JPG, TIFF, BMP, PCX, PS, EPS

The one feature that I would absolutely love that I could not find is to be able to save all web pages in a domain all at once, instead of file.