Now that the semester is over, here is a chance to examine two databases of long standing that have recently received face-lifts. LexisNexis has for the past two years been developing a whole new look to its Academic line of databases. Books in Print is employing Acqua Browser, a popular interface seen in many public libraries.
The first thing you will notice about the new LexisNexis interface is that the standard Easy Search has all the basic search boxes front and center. Easy Search is no longer a stripped down version of Power Search but a flexible tool in its own right.
You will also noticed that LexisNexis has moved all the major navigation to one place. The former interface placed its major items (News, Legal, Business, and People) along the top of the screen, leaving Easy Search and Power Search along the side with miscellaneous links. The new interface places all the searches along the side. The types of searches have increased and each is easily found with the sliding menu bar. Choices now are News, US Legal, International Legal, Companies, Subject Areas, and a comprehensive list of Sources.
LexisNexis now makes it easier to limit search by providing a menu that allows one to limit by subject category, source type, publication, industry, company, geography, and language. The experience is a clearer, easier, and more powerful way to find what you need.
Books in Print has done more than simplify its search interface. Besides the Aqua-Browser relevance cloud on the left-hand side the the screen, there are a wealth of ways to limit your selection from the right-hand menu. Once you find just the book you are after, you have a wealth of information. Not only do you get bibliographic and publisher information, but review and chapter snippets.