IntroductionThe library users have been working towards the location of the library resources from decades ago. People complained of a lack of access to desired data, hardships when customizing, user interface limitations, poor search functions, unfortunate updates, usability problems, backend issues, and problems when finding articles and journals among other issues. The issue led to the effort towards establishment of a better technology. This paper looks at the history development, technical issues, benefits, social impact, future innovations, and criticism of Web-Scale Discovery platformThe development history of Web-Scale discovery platformThe available library technology from then was the OPACs, which is an old technology although it efficiently served in access to library information.
Because of increased complaints about the technology from the library users resulting from its limitations, the technology seemed to fail (Vaughan, 2011). Because OPACs restricted the end-user interface possibilities, there had to be a step towards looking for a solution. Information resources are increased and complex, however, there is scarce attention (Meadow, & Meadow, 2012). In addition, the library users continue increasing because of widely spread internet application in the world.
A large number of internet users compromise the quality of access to the internet data. The technological frustrations made the academic initiatives come up with a new interface, referred to as a Discovery tool. Since 2009, there has been accessing to discovery products in the market since the introduction of Summon by the Serials Solutions (Ballard, & Blaine, 2011). Such products include; ‘collaborative solutions (WorldCAT), proprietary solutions (Chamo, Primo, and Summon), and open source software solutions (Backlight and VuFind) (Asher, Duke, & Wilson, 2012). ’ The practice led to the evolution of the “Web-scale Discovery. ” It is the most recent iteration technology (Chickering, & Yang, 2014). Technical aspectsThere was attempt to replace the particular catalogue and enhance improvement of the technology, but the amalgamated search tools were characterized by issues such as slowness, inefficient connections, and problems in the standard (Aly, Hatch, Josifovski, & Narayanan, 2012).
Internet problems such as cyber threats lead to technical problems in the application of the technology. BenefitsThe discovery services were offered through a unique search box and this lead to the ability to acquire some full text and pre-indexed metadata.
The platform is high potential for the removal of library user burden and makes search technology more efficient. The platform connects the discovery tools with bulky comprehensive index, which has the harvested content from the selected sources. The platforms offer cloud-computing services and are multi-tenant. However, the discovery tools have led to the formation of new problems and leaving some past problems unaddressed despite its ability to solve the major library search problems (Vaughan, 2011). The researchers now have easier access to different resources such as electronic books, journals, OPACs, digital repositories, and databases.
The past search engines were full of confusion because searching for a particular information was characterized with huge and complex results. The discovery tool made the search environment less confused despite the huge investment conducted on the library resources (Kornblau, Strudwick, & Miller, 2012). Social impactMany libraries across the globe took the chance and implemented various discovery products to enhance their library services. From the introduction of discovery in the market, the libraries currently only go for the discovery when determined to offer ’single box search systems’ to their users.
In the recent times, there has been an attempt to continue with the improvement of cloud computing and development of more discovery solutions. Likewise, implementation of the discovery tools in libraries enable solving of such problems since the system can integrate all the processed information. It is possible to retrieve the historical information through the federated search technology. The discovery services are quick and enable fast retrieval of some lost information from the database. There has been tremendous growth of the market for discovery tools because of the increased demand (Gross, & Sheridan, 2011).