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Alexandria Makeover

Last Updated: Apr 02, 2021 13:30


We are thrilled to announce our Alexandria and Textbook Tracker Dream Makeover! Yep, that's right. We're giving the programs a new look while adding various improvements, such as responsive design and exciting features.

We know change can be tough, especially when you run a busy library. Our goal is to make this a smooth, stress-free transition for you and your library. How? We're planning on offering a free webinar, new videos, expanded in-app help, and more—in addition to a gradual timeline.

Keep an eye on your email and check this page every now and then for updates!


Timeline

Betas for Circulation, Patrons Management, and Items Management will be released summer/fall of 2021. This means you can switch between using the new interfaces and the old interfaces in your own Alexandria library. This will be a great time to give it a try and take a look at all of the cool new features! We will still be fine tuning things, so if you notice anything amiss, let our Support team know at 1-800-347-4942 or support@goalexandria.com. More betas for Operations, Tools, Preferences, and Message Center will follow.

Once everyone has had the chance to get comfortable and familiar with the new interfaces, they will become the default interfaces late 2021/early 2022. Don't worry! You'll still have the option of using the old interfaces, but by then, we're hoping you'll love the Makeover as much as we do.

Eventually, the entire program will be updated.


Email Sign Up

Want to receive special Makeover announcements, sneak peeks, and beta access? Sign up for the email list!

Top 5 Features

  • Quick and advanced searching. In Patrons and Items, use either a quick search bar at the top of the record list or Advanced Search, which lets you search by just about any field!
  • Accessible and easy navigation. A new side navigation will let you access anywhere in Alexandria from anywhere else in Alexandria. Also, a new top navigation will allow universal access to recent operations, license information, help, and the site you're currently logged into.
  • New Patron Details. We appreciated your feedback on our Patron Details survey and used your suggestions to make the design and organization even better! 
  • Homeroom tab patron pictures. See pictures of patrons in Circulation while looking up homerooms.
  • More in-app help. A new help icon in the top navigation—which will be accessible from anywhere in the program—will give you access to more relevant Support Center pages, the option to create a Support ticket, and a brand new guided tour for users.


Important Changes to Know

  • A help icon in the new top navigation bar is where you'll go to send support tickets, access the Support Center, and view license information.
  • In Items Management, the Copies tab will become a tab within the title record.
  • Each interface will be updated with a modern, standardized color scheme. 
  • The keyboard shortcuts for the modules in the side navigation will change. Watch for a new keyboard shortcut guide!
  • Circulation Groups will only be available in Alexandria Textbook Tracker.


Sneak Peek

Click on the images to view larger versions, and sign up for the special Makeover list to see more!

New Patrons Management


Old Patrons Management

Changes

Curious about what's to come? Here are detailed lists outlining what we're doing to make Alexandria and Textbook Tracker easier and faster to use. Check out the Changed columns to see which changes have occurred already. 


All Interfaces

Here are some things you can look forward to across the whole program:

  • Responsive design (resized for a better experience across all devices, including iPads and mobile phones)
  • New interface and new icons
  • Click on patron pictures and cover art to view larger versions
  • New top navigation that allows you to see your site and operator; log out; and access help, messages, and operations from anywhere
  • New help icon in the top navigation that will give you universal access to viewing the Support Center, sending a Support ticket, and checking license information
  • New side navigation that allows you access to anywhere in Alexandria from anywhere in Alexandria
  • Various tips regarding the current interface will appear at the bottom of the side navigation
  • Organizational and textual changes to tabs and dialogs to improve flow and clarity
  • In-line errors to let you know when a data entry mistake is made (including character limits)
  • Confirmations show in "snackbars" instead of dialogs, which means less clicking
  • Indication for required fields and Authority Controlled fields
  • Visible keyboard shortcuts



Circulation

Changed

  • Renewals tab renamed "Items out" (7.19.10)

  • Charges History tab renamed "Payments"  (7.19.10)
  • Moved the Notes button out of the Current Patron and Current Item pane footers (access via command shortcuts and Actions menus) (7.19.10)

  • Added visible shortcuts to some tabs (7.19.10)
  • Moved the Command Help tab to the rightmost end (7.19.10)
  • First iteration of the new Patron Details (20.1)
  • First iteration of the new Item Details (20.3)
  • First iteration of the new Copy List (Alexandria Librarian only) (20.3)

Upcoming

  • Completely new Item Details (also available in Textbook Tracker)

  • Completely new Copy List, accessible from Circulation (also available in Textbook Tracker)
  • See patron pictures and today's checkouts in the Homeroom tab

  • Checkout dates displayed in the Items out (Renewals) tab

  • Sort by due date in the Items out (Renewals) tab
  • Forgive Charge button added to Charges tab

  • Support and Special tabs removed; access these features and information in the new help icon

  • Repeated buttons have been removed from the Actions menu in both the Current Patron and the Current Item panes
  • New and improved charges tabs and dialogs
  • Cover art shows for Lost items in Patron Details
  • Level (e.g. Grade) shows in the Current Patron pane.

Patrons Management
Changed
  • New Nickname field (7.19.11)
  • Updated the “module entry” (0 results) view to include four helpful links: Add a patron, Search for patrons, View recently added, and View recently modified (7.19.11)
  • Moved Site Access, Security Group selection, and Username/Password fields to the new Access tab (7.19.11)
  • Removed some sorting options: sequence #, username, and creation date (7.19.11)
  • Removed some quick search options: Modified Today, Created Today, Modified in the Last Week, and Created in the Last Week (essentially Recently Created and Recently Modified, which we still have) (7.19.11)
  • Renamed the Personal Info tab to Personal (7.19.11)
  • Renamed the Lexile tab to Programs, which now has two sub-tabs: Study Programs and Lexile (7.19.11)
  • Moved the Email field to the Contact tab (7.19.12)
  • Split the email field into two: Primary Email and Other Emails (20.1)

Upcoming

  • Important patron information is always visible at the top of the record, and additional information is organized into tabs
  • Split searching into basic searches and Advanced Search (and you can search just about every field!)
  • Select multiple records at once in order to remove or merge
  • Patron statistics will be easier to read
    • Split up Librarian and Textbooks statistics into subtabs
    • Statistics no longer shows Last Modified or Current Policy because of redundancy
  • The ability to remove patrons even if they have items checked out—the confirmation dialog will list the results of the removal: the items that will be declared lost, charges that will be forgiven, and credits that will be removed
  • Return 500 records by default instead of 200
  • Last modified log will show the last few times the record was modified, and by whom, so you can track down any issues.
  • Record list displays the sort field in addition to patron names (for example, if you sort by barcode, each patron's barcode will show above their name in the record list)
  • Ascending and descending sort order
  • Quick searches, adding, and actions buttons are at the top for easier access



Items Management

Changed

  • Copy notes are with the rest of Copy Information instead of in a separate tab (7.19.10)
  • Renamed the Study Programs tab "Programs" (7.19.10)
  • Updated the “module entry” (0 results) view to include four helpful links: Add a title, Search for items, View recently added, and View recently modified (7.19.11)
  • MARC View is a quick-access toggle (Alexandria only) (7.19.11)

  • Alert notes for Textbook copies (20.7)

Upcoming

  • Important title information is always visible at the top of the record, and additional information is organized into tabs
  • Copies as a tab under the title record (so you can always see which title you are looking at)
  • Split searching into basic searches and Advanced Search (search just about every field)
  • Select multiple records at once to export or remove
  • Removed Copy ID (no longer useful)
  • Manually queue cover art for automatic updates or turn it off
  • New Copy List; and Copy List available in Textbook Management
  • Icons to indicate medium (Library only)
  • Quick searches, adding, and actions buttons are at the top for easier access
  • Return 500 records by default instead of 200
  • Last modified log will show the last few times the record was modified, and by whom, so you can track down any issues.
  • Record list displays the sort field in addition to title (for example, if you sort by call number, each call number will show above the title in the record list)



Message Center


Changed

  • Better message storage so Message Center loads faster (7.19.9)
  • Better icons to indicate what each message is for (20.7)

Upcoming

  • Special sections for highlighted messages
  • Easier-to-read messages
  • Special messages on Dashboard and Login screen for better visibility



Operations Management


Changed

  • Added a new dropdown that sorts operations by My operations or All operations (20.1)


Upcoming

  • More noticeable filters
  • Links directly to different interfaces that run operations
  • Ability to save or edit an operation
  • Access your report PDFs from anywhere in Alexandria (via the topnav) and always be notified when operations are complete



Preferences

Changed

  • Rename "Extras" to "Services" (they aren't just 'extra', they're essential!) (20.2)
  • New Setup area with less-common settings (keep them tidied up out of the way) (20.6)
  • Email, LDAP, and Checkpoint ILS moved to Setup Preferences (from Admin) (20.6)
  • SIP2 Preferences moved to the Setup area (20.6)
  • Localization and Barcodes settings moved to the Setup area (20.6)

Upcoming

  • More control—toggle each registered service On or Off
  • Easier Overdrive setup with validation
  • Security, Policies, and Calendars moved to Tools
  • z39.50 requires confirmation to reset to defaults
  • Web settings moved to Setup Preferences (from Admin)
  • New date/time settings with time zone and less complicated date formats
  • Essential settings reorganized to be more understandable
  • Researcher settings moved to the Builder



Builder

Changed

  • -

Upcoming

  • Brand new Builder to customize all of your patron settings
  • Access to Bulletin Board Builder, Explore Builder, Maps, and Reviews
  • Default Style (easy to set the same style across all patron interfaces)
  • Easier to see global vs local Explore Panes when setting your Researcher panes
  • Set all search preferences at once for all interfaces (e.g. whether or not to show study program)
  • Easier to preview Slideshows and grab your customized URL
  • New Kiosks area that includes Activity preferences



This page is updated frequently, so check back for more!

Frequently Asked Questions

 What's changing?

The Makeover includes brand new interfaces for Circulation, Patrons Management, Items Management, Tools, Operations, Message Center, and Preferences. It introduces Builder, your hub for customizing Researcher for your patrons, as well as Dashboard, a collection of widgets that show information about your library and let you jump to the functions you use most. You’ll also see a consistent top bar and side navigation that allow you to navigate the program and access critical functions from anywhere. Eventually the entire program will be updated.

To read about more specific changes, check out the Changes tab. You can also look at the Overview tab for information on the Top 5 Features and Changes You Need to Know.

 Why is it changing?

With Version 7, which was released in 2014, we made the first big step to a modern, web-based product. But the computer world advances fast! With the Dream Makeover, we definitely want to improve how it looks and feels, but we are also updating the code to follow modern standards and be more usable on tablets and phones. This is a switch we slowly started with your Researcher interfaces back in 2015 with the release of Slideshow. And after addressing Scout, Patron Status, and Self-Service, we realized we needed to start updating Librarian interfaces as well.

 What new features do I get?

Check out the Changes tab for a comprehensive list of what's changed and what's new in each module. You can also look at our Top 5 Features on the Overview tab to see what we're most excited about.

 Do I lose any functionality?

Overall, you won't! We are, however, removing some unused options and moving some things around. Check out the Changes tab to see specifics. One thing you may want to be aware of is that there will no longer be a button linking to Researcher from the Librarian side navigation. If you use this often, a quick fix is simply bookmarking Researcher on your internet browser.

Feel free to contact Support at 1-800-347-4942 or support@goalexandria.com if you feel like something is missing.

 Can I get any training?

Yep! In the future, we will be sending an email for you to sign up for a free webinar. You can also purchase additional training by contacting our sales team at 1-800-347-6439 or sales@goalexandria.com.

 Will it cost more?

Nope! This upgrade is included in your Alexandria subscription, as long as you are current. Still on v6? Learn about switching to 7! This is also a good time to consider switching to Cloud Hosting if you don't already have it.

 When is it happening?

Betas for Circulation, Patrons Management, and Items Management will be released summer/fall 2021. This means you can switch between using the new interfaces and the old interfaces in your own Alexandria library. This will be a great time to give it a try and take a look at all of the cool new features! More betas for Operations, Tools, Preferences, and Message Center will follow.

See the Timeline section on the Overview tab for more information.

 What comes next?

You can look forward to new interfaces for Tools, Preferences, Operations, Builder, and Message Center. Check the Changes tab every now and then for updates.

 Can I see what it looks like?

We will be releasing early betas of some new interfaces early in 2021. That way, you can play around with the new interfaces before you need to use them in your own library. Watch the Message Center and your email for surveys where we ask for your feedback on new designs, or sign up for emails specific to the Makeover!