Shibbolising Online Librarian : how two university libraries enhanced their collaborative chat reference service by using a MAMS Mini grant to add authentication and develop an interoperable chat client
Chat reference, so what's new or innovative about that? It's a common enough service now offered by many libraries. In fact, Macquarie and Murdoch University Libraries have collaborated to provide a virtual reference service since March 2003 as described in a paper presented at VALA in 2004. Since then, Online Librarian has been transformed using open source standards and freeware products. The result is a robust and scalable product that allows multiple operators, smart assignment of calls, transfer of calls and automatic statistics collection.