John Blyberg is a systems administrator and lead developer for the Ann Arbor District Library. I first found out about him when he announced his very cool Virtual Card Catalog. He just announced that he has implemented a Social Online Public Access Catalog (SOPAC).
It only took a year, but I finally got permission to go ahead with implementing what I’ve dubbed “The SOPAC” here at AADL. That would be “cute-speak” for Social OPAC. The SOPAC represents a slew of features that I’ve wanted to implement for quite some time now. I’m rather excited to see if library users will respond to these tools in an OPAC setting as much as Web 2.0 users have to commercial social networking sites. I’m fairly confident they will. Mainly, I’m relieved that I no longer need to talk conceptually about features I’ve been planning to build on top of the catalog.
So what is the SOPAC? It’s basically a set of social networking tools integrated into the AADL catalog. It gives users the ability to rate, review, comment-on, and tag items. The concept is nothing new, but the nature of our systems do not yield readily to this kind of retrofitting–something I plan to really start tackling in earnest, but that’s a topic for another post.
Check out the rest of his post for images, as well as a video cast of his explaination of the AADL SOPAC.