Friday, 8 March 2013

HUG WM 2013

HUG venue - Friends Meeting House, London
Earlier this week I attended the Heritage User Group(HUG) winter meeting. It was held at the Quakers’ Friends Meeting House,directly opposite Euston train station. I’ve been here for previous HUG eventsand I’m always struck by the excellence of the venue. It’s in a prime locationand has a beautiful little garden in front of the entrance – a tiny havenamidst the noise that is London.

Heritage is the LMS used by our library, but HUG is completely independent ofIS Oxford (the developers of Heritage). It is run by a committee of Heritageusers from throughout the country, and now that I am on a committee myself, Iappreciate the job they do organising sterling events such as this.

The morning session was presented by Neville Jones from IS Oxford, whointroduced new LMS Cirqa. It was a wonderfully interesting session and it wasclear to all that Neville really knew his product. Having developed it, Nevillewas able to take us on an extensive demonstration of Cirqa and answer ourquestions. At the end of the session, I was left feeling really excited aboutmoving over to Cirqa, a prospect which had previously filled me with fear. Wewill have to upgrade from Heritage to Cirqa as support for Heritage will cease atsome stage in the future, and I feel a little more positive about it now. Ididn’t want to do it until the initial bugs had been rectified, and I followthese conversations closely via the IS Oxford Marvin forum. I’ve never changedmanagement systems before – the most I’ve ever experienced is an upgrade – soit will be somewhat of a learning curve when the time comes. I’m hoping thatthe IT Technicians at work will be able to establish Cirqa in a virtual machinewhilst we still use Heritage on a daily basis, so we’ll have a period ofgetting to know Cirqa before moving over completely. In an ideal world, I’dlike to start next academic year on Cirqa, but it depends on the workloads ofthe IT Technicians.

The rest of the day consisted of short sessions presented by HUG committeemembers. These covered various functionalities within Heritage, and I’m pleasedto say that the library in which I work already utilises the ones discussed.Text messaging and current awareness (SDI) were covered, as well as LMS use withVLEs.

An exciting element of the day for me was the introduction of a Twitterhashtag, which I haven’t noticed HUG use before. I am a keen tweeter and myaccount is used in a ‘profersonal’ way. I took the opportunity to practice livetweeting from the event and a few followers who weren’t at the HUG meetingfollowed my tweets and joined in the conversation. In fact, my tweeting duringthe day was so extensive that I even cracked a mention during the HUG AGM! I’vecreated an archive of tweets for the #hugwm13 hashtag, available here, shouldanyone be interested in reading the conversation.

I left the day full of enthusiasm for Cirqa and with a warm glowing feelinginside. A lot of my working week is spent maintaining and improving Heritageand Heritage Online and after hearing what other users said about their systems,I went home thinking our systems are in pretty good shape - even if I do say somyself!

1 comment:

  1. I find hashtags for events really helpful if I cannot attend them. Pleased you found the day useful and thanks for tweeting.