Conclusions and recommendations

The objective to “address the challenges involved in delivering quality academic content to mobile devices” has been largely met. Many of those challenges will take time to resolve, such as the issue of third party materials being provided in formats that are not mobile friendly. (See “the challenge“). This can only be resolved by the content providers, but many are beginning to address this issue.

Working on the mobile search tool has provided inspiration for ways we can improve our desktop search. For instance we know that new learners can feel lost when they initiate a search on the Library website and their search results are presented in a different interface by the search provider. By using the EBSCO API we could bring the search results into our own interface to help avoid that confusion.

Working with EBSCO has been helpful as when we’ve had difficulty working out how to do something with their API they’ve been able to advise.

Many developers now recommend designing for mobile before desktop. Our experience with MACON has shown that if you consider the functionality of desktop and mobile interfaces together they can benefit from one another and users want a consistent experience. The EBSCO representative on the project board told us that they are also now designing for mobile first and then retro-fitting for desktop.

About Keren Mills

Macon project manager (@mirya on Twitter)
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