Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Innovative Millennium Search Widget Code

After trying unsuccessfully to obtain Search Widget Code from Innovative Interfaces for our Millennium ILS, today I sat down to figure it out - or die trying!

We have had our Millennium ILS for three years now, and for the last couple of years, I occasionally do a search for this code. Absolutely nothing comes up. Many web 2.0 companies nowadays will give you the option to copy the 'Embed Code' (think YouTube or SlideShare), and VoilĂ ! your new-found widget works.

So, today, instead of doing a random search, I actually decided to call Innovative directly. When asked where I could find the Embed Code for a search widget, the very nice customer support person said "Millennium does not support code written for use outside its' OPAC; you might try the users group!".

I of course then asked why Innovative does not provide embed code for their own product, and her response was, "I'm not quite sure." When even the employees wonder why their company doesn't offer this, it is pretty sad!!

As directed, I visited the Innovative User's Group website, and searched the archives (something you can do even if you don't pay to join the group) for 'search widget code'. I immediately stumbled on several search widget conversations, and found enough code to come up with our own - turns out, it is a simple HTML form.

<form action=""; name="mainwebcatalog">
<select name="searchtype">
<option value="X">Keyword</option>
<option value="t">Title</option>
<option value="a">Author</option>
<option value="d">Subject</option>
<input name="searcharg" type="text" size="25" title="Enter your search query." />

<input class="searchBtn" name="submit" type="submit"value="Search" />

<br /><a href="" title="External link" target="_blank">more search options</a>


There are more things that you can add to this - I also found code for Popular Searches and more. At first, I struggled with the very first link; when I did a search, it would take me to our OPAC - the main page, not one with results. Turns out, I needed to add 'search/X' after our catalog's domain [""].

I'm about to add it to our website - all I've had is a link to connect the two. I have also seen some libraries that insert the OPAC directly into their website, and that is next on my agenda.

At this time, I have added a tab to our Facebook Page called "Search Catalog". Sweet.