Adventures at the Spring 2017 Library Hackathon

This year I participated in an event called HackCulture: A Hackathon for the Humanities, which was organized by the University Library. This interdisciplinary hackathon brought together participants and judges from a variety of fields. This event is different than your average campus hackathon. For one, it’s about expanding humanities knowledge. In this event, teams of […]

Pinterest Pages for Researchers

When one thinks of Pinterest, they tend to associate it with work night crock pot recipes and lifehacks that may or may not always work. But Pinterest can also be a great place to store and share links and information relating to your academic discipline that is widely accessible and free. In this post, we’ll […]

Using Microsoft Publisher for Easy and Attractive Documents

The ability to create quick and attractive layouts for posters, research presentations, and other published materials. While many will head to Photoshop, if you need something on-the-go, Microsoft Publisher is a great option for basic, yet impressive, layouts that will make you stand out. The best part is that you can make these with tools […]

Review: Don’t Make Me Think Revisited

Don’t Make Me Think Revisited by Steve Krug  is yet another updated classic available at Scholarly Commons and online as an e-book. Steve Krug of Advanced Common Sense talks about usability, which he defines as when “A person of average (or even below average) ability and experience can figure out how to use the thing […]

Campus Colors Day Photoshop Tutorial

Today is September 2nd, otherwise known as National College Colors Day! We at the Scholarly Commons have a lot of Illini spirit, and thought we would show it by showing you a quick way to Photoshop a little Illini spirit onto anybody.   If you’re interested in learning more about Photoshop or using it, head to […]

Looks Do Matter: Data.Gov’s User Friendly Information Portal

Why would it matter to a serious researcher whether an information portal has a well-designed interface? In most research circles, interfaces to collections of databases don’t need to be pretty. In fact, pretty might raise suspicions that the data is sub-standard: “What are they trying to cover up?” It’s all about the data, right? Yes, […]

See your Website or Software App from the User’s Perspective

Increasingly, Computer Scientists, Social Scientists, Designers, and Developers have been conducting research in human-computer interaction (HCI). This trend has become so pervasive that Stanford University is now offering a free online course in HCI. One of the main tools of HCI is usability testing. While usability testing comes out of a broader design perspective and […]

Try your hand at iPhone and iPad app development

The Undergraduate Library is hosting two workshops in December to help the campus community get started with app development. The beginners workshop will take place on December 6th, Room 289, Undergraduate Library, 6:30-8:00pm. The advanced workshop will take place December 7th, in Room 289, Undergraduate Library 6:30-8:00pm. More details and registration information are available at […]

Researchers access library on the go

The library continues to enhance its mobile website. Researchers can now access the following features at http://m.library.illinois.edu with a mobile Web browser: Searching the library catalog & requesting materials. Renewing materials on your account & checking request status. Locating material on physical or electronic reserve (the ability to read PDFs of e-reserve documents will vary, […]