Notes on "The Suma Project"

The Suma Project: Integrating Observational Data Assessment Into Space and Service Design
Jason Casden, Lead Librarian, Digital Services Development, NCSU Libraries, Raleigh, NC
Bret Davidson, Digital Technologies Development Librarian, NCSU Libraries, Raleigh, NC

  • Suma is an open-source, tablet-based app for collecting & analysing data about the usage of physical spaces & services. It supports all mobile devices, as well as desktop computers.
  • This app contains a giant button to allow staff to easily record headcount. The student workers just hold the iPad at their side and click the large button when taking headcount.
  • Suma uses Google Analytics to keep track of app usage.
  • It’s a reusable tool that has the ability to be used across multiple departments & initiatives
  • The Suma server uses PHP & syncs between the client & the server
  • It exports data into CSV format & chart images
  • Suma is hosted on GitHub; pull requests are welcome
  • Includes installation docs & support requests
  • Has the ability to run on a web server & MySQL database.
  • For more information on the Suma project, please ask me for the PDFs of this presentation.

Notes on "Know Thy Project"

Know Thy Project: What Creation and Analysis of an Online Data Stream Can Teach You About Output and Efficiency
R. Niccole Westbrook, Coordinator of Digital Operations, University of Houston Libraries, Houston, TX

  • Every person on the team collects data
  • Make sure that staff understand why the data they’re collecting is useful.
  • Have a plan for all data collected.
  • Use incentives.
  • Log the hours spent collecting data into a calendar, such as Google calendar.
  • It’s important to know how many hours are being put in on a project so that we can revise if needed.
  • Have staff log any issues they’ve had with collecting data.
  • Using forms within Google Docs (now called Google Drive) is a good way for staff to collect data from any location.
  • These forms can be exported into Excel for analysis.
  • Compare how much work has been produced year after year.
  • Why has the workflow increased/decreased? In what ways can we improve?
  • Make sure that data collection & analysis doesn’t take any more than 5-10 minutes per day.
  • Flawed data is better than no data.
  • Quality control decisions are made 1st with policies and then through data collection & analysis.

Notes on "Information in a Dash"

Information in a Dash: Painless & Penniless Statistical Reports
Joyce Neujahr, Director of Patron Services, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE
Emily McIllece, Reference Associate, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE

  • Libraries often have many statistics in too many places (ILS, LibGuides, databases, etc.).
  • This library used Google Sites & Google Docs for statistics.
  • The benefit of this was that the sheets were customizable, could be updated in real time, and they could choose who gets to see & edit the info. This data is also accessible anywhere, at any time.
  • For an example of this library’s statistics, see
  • The graphs are linked to Google Spreadsheets and change automatically when data changes.
  • Google Analytics are attached to the Dashboard, so you can keep track of how often statistics are entered.
  • Keeping statistics in this way makes it easier to compile data for annual reports, campus newsletter, collection development (ILL stats), and accreditation.
  • Having all library statistics in one place has greatly benefited this library. ILL statistics, in particular, have driven many of their collection development decisions.
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