Many of our academic libraries have very byzantine 'hours' policies.
Developing UI that can express these sensibly is time-consuming and
difficult; by doing a great job at it (like Sean has), you can make the
byzantine hours logic a lot easier for users to understand... but you
can still only do so much to make convoluted complicated library hours
easy to deal with and understand for users.
If libraries can instead simplify their hours, it would make things a
heck of a lot easier on our users. Synchronize the hours of the
different parts of the library as much as possible. If some service
points aren't open the full hours of the library, if you can make all
those service points open the _same_ reduced hours, not each be
To some extent, working on hours displays to convey byzantine hours
structures can turn into the familiar case of people looking for
technological magic bullet solutions to what are in fact business and
On 11/27/13 9:25 AM, Sean Hannan wrote:
> Iıd argue that library hours are nothing but edge cases.
> Staying open past midnight is actually a common one. But how do you deal
> with multiple library locations? Multiple service points at multiple
> library locations? Service points that are by appointment onlyı during
> certain days/weeks/months of the year? Physical service points that are
> under renovation (and therefore closed) but their service is being carried
> out from another location?
> When you have these edge cases sorted out, how do you display it to users
> in a way that makes any kind of sense? How do you get beyond shoehorning
> this massive amount of data into outmoded visual paradigms into something
> that is easily scanned and processed by users? How do you make this data
> visualization work on tablets and phones?
> The data side of calendaring is one thing (and for as standard and
> developed as the are, iCal and Google Calendarıs data formats donıt get it
> 100% correct as far as Iım concerned). Designing the interaction is wholly
> It took me a good two or three weeks to design the interaction for our new
> hours page (http://www.library.jhu.edu/hours.html) over the summer. There
> were lots of iterations, lots of feedback, lots of user testing. ³User
> testing? Just for an hours page?² Yes. Itıs one of our most highly sought
> pieces of information on our website (and yours too, probably). Getting it
> right pays off dividends.
> I donıt know if youıd find it useful (our use cases are not necessarily
> your use cases), but I ended up writing up the whole process as a blog
> Sean Hannan
> Senior Web Developer
> Sheridan Libraries
> Johns Hopkins University
> On 11/26/13, 6:41 PM, "Barnes, Hugh" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> Great edge case, thanks for sharing that one!
>> I think currently that could only be _encoded_ as a separate opening in
>> the CSV file for loading into the database, which won't work because of
>> my assumption. There simply isn't a way to express it. The relevant
>> fields for the load file are startdate, enddate, opentime, and closetime,
>> the last two being formatted as only "hh:mm", so it's assumed they relate
>> to each single day in the range.
>> However, I edited a "closes" field value directly in the test database,
>> and to my surprise it rendered sensibly. I would have thought it would be
>> rejected by a validity test I have which checks that the day portion of
>> the start and closing datestamps are the same .
>> I can't justify spending time on this in the near future, since it's a
>> use case we are unlikely to need here. However, I'll log an issue, or you
>> may. Thanks again.
>>  https://github.com/LincolnUniLTL/calibr/blob/master/lib/app.php#L113
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Code for Libraries [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of
>> Bohyun Kim
>> Sent: Wednesday, 27 November 2013 11:28 a.m.
>> To: [log in to unmask]
>> Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] calibr: a simple opening hours calendar
>> Thanks for sharing. A quick question. If a library opens past midnight,
>> does that count more than one opening a day or no?
>> On Nov 26, 2013, at 5:04 PM, "Barnes, Hugh" <[log in to unmask]>
>>> Hi folks
>>> I took a calendar script posted to this list by Andrew Darby some time
>>> ago and made some changes. I don't think there is any of Andrew's code
>>> left, so I've rebranded it with an acknowledgement. (If I had my time
>>> again, I might have coded it from scratch rather than built it over
>>> Andrew's script, but that's somewhat academic.)
>>> The whole scoop is in the readme on Github:
>>> TLDR: With PHP, MySQL, some fiddling and data entry, you can publish a
>>> library opening hours calendar on your website in more than one language
>>> if you wish. It's a little quicker to enter common period patterns than
>>> it used to be in Google Calendar. The output is more accessible,
>>> customisable, multilingual, semantic, and hopefully more extensible
>>> (iCal etc) than previously.
>>> Here's a branded reference implementation:
>>> http://library2.lincoln.ac.nz/hours - it won't necessarily reflect the
>>> latest version.
>>> Use it, improve it, feed back, or log issues right there on Github if
>>> that works for you.
>>> Many thanks to Andrew for providing the foundation!
>>> Hugh Barnes
>>> Digital Access Coordinator
>>> Library, Teaching and Learning
>>> Lincoln University
>>> New Zealand
>>> p +64 3 423 0357
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