USC Libraries’ website to undergo extensive renovation by December

first_imgAfter reviewing the results of last year’s annual library survey, USC Libraries has began the process of completely overhauling its website.For the past few years, the website has been one of the top five complaints from students. USC Libraries Dean Catherine Quinlan said the website was updated continually since it was last re-designed in 2009.Quinlan noted that, when the new re-design project is completed, it will be the most significant upgrade to the website in at least five years.“We realized the technological infrastructure of the website had to be completely re-done,” Quinlan said.Online · Allie Beckemeyer, a post-baccalaureate student in the premedical program, uses the university’s libraries search engine on Tuesday while studying chemistry in the Von KleinSmid Center Library. — Alexander Harsono | Daily TrojanQuinlan said the new website is projected to be up and running by December.The project aims to enable online users to search all systems and data sources at once, gaining access to all the different sources though a single search engine. However, unlike common Internet search engines, users will gain access to domains that have been reviewed and deemed legitimate by librarians.“With Google, you don’t really know what you’re getting,” Quinlan said.Re-designing and updating the website will allow users to have easier access to information  and tools that already exist, according to Quinlan.“We’ve heard from pretty much everyone that it’s hard to find things and that tools are not visible,” Quinlan said.These inconsistencies with the fundamental features of the site, particularly with the search engine, stands as a major source of frustration for some users.“I type in an author or architect and gives like 10 options before the name comes,” said Norma Maldonado, a graduate student pursuing a master’s in architecture. “I think this change will help.”Not everyone feels a rehaul is necessary, however. Some students said they think the current site is adequate for research.“I use the website for doing research for my essays,” said Xiaojie Wang, an undecided freshman. “It’s pretty clear and straightforward and I can get what I want.”Other students had a different spin on the upcoming changes,  saying that no improvements were needed for the site but that increased development and refinement of the site would benefit the student body in the long run.“I don’t think it’s necessary,” said Allison Begalman, a freshman majoring in screenwriting. “It’s fine right now … [but] I guess if it’s going to help people and be more accessible, then why not?”Though the website will not necessarily include any brand-new features, university libraries are looking to improve compatibility with cell phones and tablets.  It’s unclear whether the site will simply be optimized for mobile platforms or if new tools, such as a smartphone app, will be considered. Wang, for one, felt such an app would make searching the libraries’ resources much simpler for students on the go.“I would love to have iPhone apps for USC Library,” Wang said. “I already have one for the Lyon Center, so it will be way more convenient to have mobile apps.”But looking at the big picture, Hugh McHarg, the associate dean of planning and communication for USC Libraries, said the project is particularly important because the website is the primary way people interact with the library’s collection services.“Constantly improving [the website] is always important to us and always a priority,” McHarg said. “We want to find a way to bring all [the library’s] resources together so the website is more consistent and accessible.”Quinlan said the new site should help students to finally be able to access the information with ease.“I’m most excited to make it easier for students to use the resources that we acquire so thoughtfully for them,” Quinlan said. “It frustrates me that we find all these resources and then people cannot find them.”last_img read more

Former USC tennis star shines at Roland Garros

first_imgFor Steve Johnson, the 2017 French Open was as much an emotional battle as a physical one. The 27-year-old USC alumnus, ranked No. 25 in the world, showed up to Roland Garros this year with a heavy heart following the passing of his father. Johnson’s father, a respected tennis coach in Orange County, passed away unexpectedly at the age of 58 less than a month before the start of the tournament.“I know it’s going to be emotional for quite some time,”  Johnson said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times ahead of the French Open. “Who knows how long it’ll take? I just know he’s with me. He raised me to be a competitor and a fighter to the last point, and that’s what I try to do with my tennis.”In his first match at Roland Garros, Johnson took on Japan’s Yuichi Sugita in what proved to be a tough first-round matchup. Ranked No. 78 in the world, Sugita trailed 2-1 when the match was delayed due to weather. After it was all said and done, Johnson prevailed in a five-set, 3.5 hour-long match by a score of 6-3, 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-7(3), 6-3. Johnson broke Sugita’s serve twice in the fifth set to send him to a matchup with Croatia’s Borna Coric in the next round. Johnson’s second match was another grueling test of the American’s will. In a four hour-long emotional roller coaster, Johnson topped Coric 6-2, 7-6 (8), 3-6, 7-6 (6). But Johnson’s triumph didn’t come until after four lost match points and a controversial ball abuse call. Coric was one point away from forcing a fifth set twice until Johnson hit a forehand winner. Overcome with emotion, Johnson dropped to his knees in triumph, while Coric smashed his racquet on Roland Garros’ famous clay court. In an emotional post-match interview, Johnson, with tears in his eyes, admitted, “Physically, I’m OK. Emotionally, I’m a mess.”“[My father] always wanted me to be a fighter and a competitor so that’s what I’m going to do, day in and day out,” Johnson said. “That’s the only thing I can do.”Johnson said it was impossible to hold in his emotions any longer against Coric.“The other days, I was able to kind of get to the locker room and kind of compose myself a little bit,” he said. “Today was just such an emotional match — a long match, up and down. Just to get through it was something that I know I’ll be very proud of.”Physically and emotionally drained from his matches against Sugita and Coric, Johnson then lost tosixth-ranked Dominic Thiem of Austria 6-1, 7-6 (4), 6-3. Johnson put up an honorable fight after a slow start, but he was unable to upset the talented Thiem. Johnson, now ranked No. 26 in the world, won the admiration of not only fans, but also his competition. After the match, Thiem complimented his opponent.“It’s really [a] tragedy what happened. You wish it on nobody, especially him,” Thiem said. “It was, of course, very emotional for him. It also shows that there are way more important things than tennis. I think it was unbelievably tough for him to even play here.”Johnson is making waves in professional tennis after an outstanding Trojan career. He departed USC with a 72-match win streak to close out his collegiate record, and he won the NCAA Singles Championship in 2011 and 2012 in addition to winning national team championships during all four seasons. He was also a seven-time All-American and won a host of ITA and conference awards. Since his graduation, Johnson has made more than a dozen Grand Slam appearances and secured his first trip to the Summer Olympics for Team USA in 2016.last_img read more