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What Do I Do If There Are No Results For My Search?

 

Like other things in life, searching in the catalog doesn’t produce the results you’re looking for. If nothing is found for your search, you’ll see this message (or something very much like it): 

Sorry. No entries were found for nyarlathotep.

In this case, we did a search for Books - nyarlathotep - Title - All C/W MARS Libraries. What this tells us is that there are no books in all the libraries of the consortium that have “nyarlathotep” in the title. 

(If we did a search for All Formats - nyarlathotep - Keyword - All C/W MARS Libraries, on the other hand, we do get one book of scary stories by H.P. Lovecraft.) 

There are many reasons why a search can return no results or not the results you were looking for. Here are a few: 

1. It’s possible that there is no material in the catalog that matches your search. Sometimes, for example, people will look for a book and no library in the consortium will have purchased it. This sometimes happens with textbooks or with self-published books. 

2. Simple searches often produce the best results. You may try your search again with fewer conditions. For instance, if you used “Book”, you could try “All Formats”. If you used “Title”, you could try “Keyword”.

3. Limiting your search to a single library may result is no search returns. This just means that the library you searched didn’t have what you were looking for. You can try searching “All C/W MARS libraries”. 

4. The catalog will try to find records that have all the words you’re searching for. A search with fewer words will sometimes succeed where more words don’t. For instance, if you search for “spain luxury hotels”, you will get no results. If you search for “spain hotels”, you will get results that will lead you to materials on luxury hotels in Spain. (“Luxury” may appear in the book; it just wasn’t in the catalog record.) 

While often we can find things on our own, we should always remember that our local librarians will be happy to help us if we get stuck.

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Online Catalog: The Basic Search Screen

The home page of the online catalog is also called the Basic Search screen. When you go to http://catalog.cwmars.org , this is the screen you will see:

There are three sections to the page. The upper part of the page is the top navigation. The center part contains the search features. The bottom part of the page is the footer navigation and contains links to other sites and to Help.

The Top Navigation

These are the parts of the top navigation and search bar (from left to right):

1. The C/W MARS logo. If you click on this logo from any page in the online catalog, you will be brought back to this home page.

2. The Log into My Account button. Clicking on this button will take you to the log in page.

3. Advanced Search. Clicking on Advanced Search will take you to the Advanced Search page.

4. See New Titles at your library. Clicking on this link will take you to a page where you can choose your library from a list. Clicking on the library's name will show you all the latest titles acquired at the library.

5. Kids Catalog. Clicking on the Kids Catalog link will take you to the home page of the Kids Catalog.

The Search Features

The search features consist of

1. the search box where you enter the words you are looking for in the catalog (title, author, subject, keyword).

Note: the little microphone icon at the end of the search box indicates that the web browser will respond to your voice. Not all web browsers have this feature and so you may see the entire search box as blank.

2. the search filters. You can filter your search for different fomats (large print book or DVD, for example). You can filter your search for Keyword, Title and Author. You can choose whether you want to search all the libraries in the consortium or just your own. 

Note: each of the boxes has a little down-pointing arrow at the right hand side. This indicates that these are dropdown boxes. Until you click on the search filter, your additional filter choices are hidden.

3. The Search button. When you click the Search button, your search will be carried out.

The Footer Navigation

The footer navigation contains links to other web sites and to Help.

1. Digital Catalog. Clicking on this link takes you to the Overdrive digital catalog.

2. Kids Digital Books Catalog: This link takes you to the Overdrive Kids Reading Room.

3. MA Virtual Catalog. This link takes you to the page that allows you to enter your library card and choose your pick-up library for requests that you make for materials outside the consortium.

4. Digital Treasures. This link takes you to the online digital historical collection sponsored by C/W MARS.

5. C/W MARS Home. This link takes you to the home page of the C/W MARS web site.

6. Report a problem. Clicking on this link will take you to the page where you can report any problem that you might have with the online catalog.

7. Help. The Help link brings you to the page that lists all the currently available documentation for our online catalog.

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Online Catalog: The Basic Search Screen

The home page of the online catalog is also called the Basic Search screen. When you go to http://bark.cwmars.org , this is the screen you will see:

There are three sections to the page. The upper part of the page is the top navigation. The center part contains the search features. The bottom part of the page is the footer navigation and contains links to other sites and to Help.

The Top Navigation

These are the parts of the top navigation and search bar (from left to right):

1. The C/W MARS logo. If you click on this logo from any page in the online catalog, you will be brought back to this home page.

2. The Log into My Account button. Clicking on this button will take you to the log in page.

3. Advanced Search. Clicking on Advanced Search will take you to the Advanced Search page.

4. See New Titles at your library. Clicking on this link will take you to a page where you can choose your library from a list. Clicking on the library's name will show you all the latest titles acquired at the library.

5. Kids Catalog. Clicking on the Kids Catalog link will take you to the home page of the Kids Catalog.

The Search Features

 

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Renewing Materials through the online catalog

Through the online catalog, it may be possible for you to renew materials that you have checked out. Here's how:

1. Log into your account.

2. You will see the number of items you have out both in the upper left corner of the screen and in the middle of the screen under "Items Currently Checked out". In this example, there is one item checked out. See the picture below:

3. Click on either the "View All" link next to the "Items Currently Checked out" or on the "Items Checked Out" tab. You will see the list of items you have checked out at the moment. See the picture below:

Notice that the item "The Sanctuary Sparrow" is checked out. It has a due date of 04/23/2014 and shows that there is ONE renewal left. (If there are ZERO renewals left, you cannot renew an item on line and must seek assistance from your library staff.)

4. Check the checkbox next to the item (or items) that you want to renew and click the "Go" button.

5. A pop-up box will appear asking if you really want to renew the selected item(s). If you do, click OK. If not, click Cancel.

6. If you clicked OK, the screen will change and you will see that the renewal has been successful. See the picture below:

Notice that RENEWALS LEFT shows ZERO. (The due date did not change because, for the sake of this example, the item was renewed on the same day it was taken out. Ordinarily, the DUE DATE will change.)

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Sending yourself a text message from the online catalog

A feature of the online catalog is the ability to send a text message to your mobile device.

First, do a search. For this example, we searched for "brother cadfael". In the search returns, this item showed up first:

To see the record, we click on the title "The sanctuary sparrow" or the picture. The following screen is displayed to us:

In the colored bar underneath "The Sanctuary Sparrow" picture, we see TEXT CALL NUMBER TO PHONE. In the column, under this, we see an underlined "Text" link. Clicking on this link, we see:

From the "Mobile carrier" dropdown, choose the carrier for your mobile phone.

In the "Mobile number" textbox, enter your telephone number, without spaces or dashes.

Click the "Submit" button and the text message will be sent to your mobile phone.

Click your browser's "Back" button to return to the item record.

Note:

1. If you choose the wrong mobile carrier from the Mobile carrier dropdown list, you will not receive a message, even if you enter your telephone number correctly.

2. If you are logged into your account when you go to this screen and if you have a default mobile carrier  and phone number listed in your listed in your account,  the mobile carrier and number specified in your library account should pre-populate the dropdown box and the Mobile number box.

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The Temporary List

The Temporary List is just that, a temporary place to put items while you're searching.

The Temporary List appears at the top of the dropdown list when you move your cursor over the "Add to my list" link to the right of an item that you've searched for in the catalog. Here, you see the Temporary List above the Brother Cadfael list that we've been using for many examples.

Important: If you add items to the Temporary List and do not move those items to another saved list that you created, everything on the list will disappear when you log out or close your web browser.

When you add an item to the Temporary List, you will see a warning page.

If you do not wish to see the warning every time you add an item to the Temporary List, you can check the checkbox next to "Do not show this warning again." You can do this and you won't see a warning again. The first time you forget and log out or close your browser without saving the items in the Temporary List - and you lose them all - you may wish you had left this warning on.

In any event, click the OK button to continue. The item will be added to the Temporary List.

You may add as many items as you like to the Temporary List.

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Sharing Your List

An interesting thing that you can do with My Lists is to share with others a list you have created. Here is a picture of the Brother Cadfael list that we created before:

Notice the Share button. 

If we want to share the list we've created with others, we click the Share button. Now the display changes. At the right hand side, we see a link to "HTML view".

Clicking on the HTMLView link will take you to your list as seen in the catalog.

In your browser's navigation bar, copy the entire URL. Paste it into a text file on your computer. This is the link to your list that you can send your friends.

Note:

1. The title and description of your list will appear just as you entered it when you created the list. You can go back and change the title and description of the list, if you like, and your changes will be reflected immediately.

2. To stop sharing a list, click on the Hide button next to the list title in My Lists. Your list will no longer be visible.

 

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Moving Items from a Temporary List

Once you have added items to a Temporary List, you may wish to save these items more permanently to one or more other lists.

The other lists must exist before you can move items to them from the Temporary List.

For this example, we have created three lists named Kids' Stories, Lovecraft, and Sherlock Holmes.

We search for items and add them to the Temporary List using the dropdown from the Add to  my list link in the catalog.

After adding ten different items to the Temporary List, this is what the Temporary List looks like:

We've added titles to the Temporary List that fall into three separate areas: scary stories by H.P. Lovecraft, children's stories, and Sherlock Holmes. We want to move all the titles of each type into their own lists.

We check the checkboxes next to all the Lovecraft-related items, choose the Lovecraft list from the "Actions for these items" dropdown, and click the Go button.

The items that we chose will now disappear from the Temporary List and be saved in the Lovecraft list. We can then follow the same procedure to move the Sherlock Holmes items to the Sherlock Holmes list and the children's items to the Kid's stories list.

Note:

The Temporary List disappears when you log out or when you close your web browser. If you do not move items from the Temporary List to an existing list, they will disappear, too, and you'll have to search for them all over again.

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Downloading a CSV File

"CSV" stands for "comma separate value". A CSV file is a file that contains all the data from your list, each bit of data is separated by a comma.

The raw data for a CSV file of the Brother Cadfael list would look like this:

An excellent mystery /,"Peters, Ellis,",1997.,Books,
Dead man's ransom /,"Peters, Ellis,","1997, c1994.",Books,
The virgin in the ice /,"Peters, Ellis,","1995, c1982.",Books,
A morbid taste for bones /,"Peters, Ellis,","[1994], c1977.",Books,This is the first book in the series.,
One corpse too many /,"Peters, Ellis,","[1994], c1979.",Books,
A rare benedictine :the advent of Brother Cadfael /,"Peters, Ellis,","1991, c1988.",Books,

The data includes the titles, the authors, the publication date, the type, and a note that was added to one of the items in the list.

CSV files can be opened directly with programs like Microsoft Office Excel and OpenOffice.org Calc. These files can be useful if you want to save your lists offline, keep them in a spreadsheet, or add other data that can't be added in the My List interface.

In the controls for every list is a Download CSV button. To download a CSV file of a list, click this button and your CSV file will be saved locally to your computer.

Note:

1. If you have a number of lists, you must download each of them individually but clicking their Download CSV button.

2. There is no way to upload lists to your account.

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