Tuesday's Class- Electronic Reference Desk

Tuesday in class we will be talking about the electronic reference desk and how it has changed over the course of the past few years and discuss where it is headed. The reference desk has changed in many ways and we are going to explore the variety of different forms of electronic communication that can be used to answer a reference question from people around the world. Virtual Reference can be broken down into several components, but can be referred to as Anytime, Anywhere, Answers or AAA.

In class we are going explore what things are important when providing virtual reference and how it is both similar and different from face-to-face reference questions. It is one thing to talk about the reference process and another to engage in virtual reference. Therefore we will be exploring the following methods of electronic communication:

Accounts have already been created for yahoo messenger, meebo, and zoho and they will be given out during class on Tuesday. In order to use meebo and zoho we will need log into the applications and create a chat widget. After creating a widget we will then copy and past the html code into a web page that will be made available on the web.

meebo instructions

  • log into meebo
  • select preferences –> meebo me widgets
  • select “add a new widget” from the new dialog box that opens
  • enter a name for your widget
  • copy and past “widget embed text” into a web page

Meebo online example: http://ella.slis.indiana.edu/~papatter/meebo_patrick.html

zoho instructions

  • from zoho homepage select zoho chag
  • sign in using the yahoo username and password that was created for class
  • after loggin in select the “live chat”
  • enter a name and title then selet “Generate Code For Embed Chad”
  • copy and past code into your web page

Zoho Widget online example: http://ella.slis.indiana.edu/~papatter/zoho_patrick.html

Here is the HTML code that you can copy and past into a text editor

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN” “http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd”>

<html xmlns=”http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml”>


<meta http-equiv=”Content-Type” content=”text/html; charset=UTF-8″ />

<title>Meebo Chat Widget Example</title>



<h3>Meebo Chat Widget Example</h3>

<!– Below This Comment You Will Want to Past the HTML code you copied from either meebo or zoho -!->