WordPress Finesse

Greetings CRRA community,

We have been working on updating the blog and are in the process of adding new information in an effort to make it more user-friendly.  With this in mind, we felt it might be helpful to share our findings, what we learned about WordPress, with you, as you may find the information useful now or at some point in the future.  Feel free to share this information with colleagues, family and friends.

In this posting, we will present information on the following topics:

  1. Adding the “more tag” in blog posts
  2. Creating and displaying categories for blog posts
  3. Antedating blog posts
  4. Formatting a blog’s side bar

As an aside, please note that all the information pertains to blogs operated using the WordPress system. 

Adding the “More Tag”

The “more tag” is a very useful tool in blog posts.  Using the “more tag” will help to make your blog page look cleaner and sleeker and allow your readers to easily access the information they need.  Additionally, the “more tag,” allows users to quickly browse the most recent posts.

WordPress defines the “more tag” as a “tag that breaks a post into ‘teaser’ and content sections. Type a few paragraphs, insert this tag and then compose the rest of your post. On your blog’s home page you will see only those first paragraphs with a hyperlink ((more…)), which when followed displays the rest of the post’s content.”  The “more tag” is considered a QuicktagQuicktags are displayed in the tool bar at the top of the draft of your new post.  The “more tag” can be inserted at any point in your post.  Also, you can go back and edit previous posts and insert the “more tag” wherever it is most useful and then update the piece.

An example has been provided here.  Click this link and it will lead you to the rest of the content.  Continue reading “WordPress Finesse”

Google Analytics and the Catholic Portal

Through my experimentation with Google Analytics, it has proven to be a rather useful tool for tracking usage patterns for the Catholic Portal. However, it is only effective if one knows where to look for information. To that end, I have compiled a quick guide about where to find the answers to all sorts of questions about website usage. While I use the Catholic Portal for these examples, the instructions here should be applicable for any site set up to use Google Analytics. Continue reading “Google Analytics and the Catholic Portal”

Indexing and displaying Encoded Archival Description files

This posting muses on how to index and display Encoded Archival Description (EAD) files in the “Catholic Portal” of the Catholic Research Resources Alliance.

The Catholic Portal is essentially an index of two types of metadata: 1) records describing individual and discrete items, and 2) records describing collections of individual items. For the most part, the former metadata records are MARC records describing books. The later are EAD files describing the holdings of archives. Continue reading “Indexing and displaying Encoded Archival Description files”

My experience with Archivists’ Toolkit

by Adam McGinn (July 17, 2012)

During the last two months, I had evaluated Archivists’ Toolkit for use with the Catholic Portal project. Archivists’ Toolkit is a program suitable for recording and managing archival metadata. The program stores metadata in either a remote or local SQL database, and also allows exporting to an XML file. The documentation for Archivists’ Toolkit is quite helpful, though it is fairly comprehensive and it may be difficult to find how to do something specific. I am writing this document in the hope that it will help potential future users of Archivists’ Toolkit here at Hesburgh Library. Continue reading “My experience with Archivists’ Toolkit”

Graphic design and the “Catholic Portal”

Graphic design is definitely not my forte, but I think I have finally wrangled it as well as the overall look & feel of the “Catholic Portal”.

“Skinning” Vufind is not terribly difficult. Using a sort of inheritance, the implementor creates a hierarchy of directories where Vufind will look for customized output views before falling back to a default theme coming with the distribution. I was having one heck of a time getting the search results to display correctly. After looking solutions in all the wrong places, I finally copied a version of the Blueprint theme’s results.tpl file to my local themes directory. After tweaking it a bit, and after refreshing Vufind’s cache and compile directories, things started to line up. As an extra bonus, things like Google, Internet Archive, and HathiTrust snippet views were also being displayed. The “book bag” feature now works as well. Whew!

That said, it requires quite a number of skills in order for Vufind to be implemented properly. They include but are not limited to subject experts, systems administrators, computer programmers, usability technicians, graphic designers, metadata experts, administrators of people, public service personnel, etc.

sample screen dump of “Catholic Portal” search results

Fulltext indexing in Vufind with Aperture

The implementation of fulltext indexing in Vufind with Aperture is not difficult. This posting describes how I implemented it for the Catholic Research Resources Alliance.

About 800 of the 125,000 indexed records in the “Catholic Portal” are linked to full text through a URL in the MARC records’ 856 field. The vast majority of these records come from the University of Toronto and the University of Notre Dame. The process of fulltext indexing is documented at vufind.org, but I’ll clarify here. Continue reading “Fulltext indexing in Vufind with Aperture”

How to make CRRA metadata available via the FTP “dropbox”

When CRRA members are not able or do not want to make their metadata available their own website, we hear at Catholic Portal Central will create one for them. To begin the process, a CRRA member simply needs to express this desire with me, Eric Lease Morgan (574/631-8604; emorgan@nd.edu), and we will go from there.   Continue reading “How to make CRRA metadata available via the FTP “dropbox””