New Digimap Home Page is Live

The new look home page we told you about in the last blog post, has now been launched.

Home Page August 2016

Along with the fresh new look for the start of the new academic year we have also updated the registration and licence agreement pages. The structure of the pages and access to the applications has not been changed, so you should have no problem navigating around the page.

Please let us know if you have any questions or need any more information:

  • Email:

New Digimap Home Page for the new Academic Year

We have been hard at work developing a fresh new look for Digimap which we will be launching for the new academic year. Here is a sneak preview, though please note that nothing has been finalised just yet:

Digimap Home Page July 2016

The operation of the page remains the same and the layout is almost identical, we have just given it a modern fresh look. We hope you like it!

If you have any questions or require any more information then please feel free to contact us:

  • Phone: 0131 650 3302
  • Email:


Promotion for the New SUNCAT Interface!

The new interface for SUNCAT became publicly available in October 2013.  Since then we have been running it in parallel with the Aleph interface (termed Original SUNCAT) to allow users to gain familiarity with the new interface and make it easy to switch between the two versions.   We feel now that users have gained familiarity with the new interface and we are ready to make it the primary means of accessing the SUNCAT database.  Accordingly, from Friday 14th March , the Landing page, which at present currently provides the main way of accessing both services will no longer be available in its present form.  Please note that it may take a day or so for the changes to take place throughout the World Wide Web.  On linking to the page ( users will be taken directly to the new interface.  All the information tabs available on the Landing page (About; For Librarians; Help & Support; News and Events) are available on the new interface.  The button on the new interface, Original SUNCAT, providing access to the Aleph interface, will remain for a limited period.

We have received much informal positive feedback on the new interface but are planning to carry out a survey of the new interface in early April.   Once we have had time to analyse the returns and act on any critical points raised, we intend to remove Original SUNCAT from public availability and provide all access to the SUNCAT database entirely through the new interface.  We anticipate moving to exclusive access via the new interface at the beginning of June 2014.

Evolution of SUNCAT: new design and functionality now available

Those working on SUNCAT are very excited with the progress which has been made with the development of the new interface and we are delighted to announce that it is now available at:

Earlier posts on this blog highlighted some of the improved functionality which will be available on the new interface.

The new interface has been developed on an open-source search platform, Solr, which has provided us with the flexibility to provide new and enhanced functionality, including:


·         Improved pre-search library and geographic limits: enabling you to focus your search to see only holdings from a particular group of libraries or from a particular geographic location.

·         The ability to combine library, location, format, language and year of

publication pre-search limits to create very specific focused searches.

·         The introduction of post-search filters: enabling you to narrow your

search results by holding library, format, subject, author, date of first

publication, place of publication and language.

·         More integrated information about our Contributing Libraries: from the holdings display you can link to the library website, contact details, Google directions, the British Library code (for inter-library loans) and the date when the library’s data was last updated in SUNCAT.

·         Links to the local catalogues of holding libraries: also available on the

holdings display, enabling you to check information directly at the source.

·         A new look for the interface incorporating a map showing all the various locations of our Contributing Libraries.

To allow everyone time to become familiar with the new interface it will run in parallel with the existing Aleph interface for a period of about 6 months.  We hope that everyone will find it easy and straightforward to use the new interface.  Help text has been provided and we will be making available some ‘Quick Start’ guides and other documentation.  In addition, it is planned to run a series of Workshops in March/April 2014 to demonstrate the functionality available in the new interface and to share with all participants the plans for further developments.

In due course we will be asking for feedback on the new interface but in the meantime we will be delighted to receive any questions and/or comments.

Please send these to:


SUNCAT Redevelopment Feedback Survey Report

We made a preview version of the new service available at UKSG in early April and just closed this off a few weeks ago. During this period we put up an online survey and encouraged emails to the EDINA helpdesk to ask our users for their views on the functionality and ease of use of the redeveloped service. A full report is now available on our website.

Overall, the response was very positive and any significant issues which were raised, EDINA were already aware of and are currently busy trying to resolve for the next release, due this autumn. Over 70% of the respondents reported that the preview service was better than the current service and we hope to improve this figure further as we iron out the glitches.

“Very bold design, clear and simple. A great improvement. Will encourage use of the service.”

We are happy that the vast majority of respondents found that the basic search facility was easy to use, 89%, and that the newly introduced post-search filters were found to be useful to 83% of respondents. Respondents reported that both the pre and post search filters would be good tools for reducing large result sets and filtering out holdings which might not be of interest, e.g. electronic or print holdings.

“Having the basic phrases in the first drop down box allows an easy search but also one that can still be refined without having to go to advanced search. Limiting locations and institutions is useful, especially for us as a public library as we know a number of locations will not lend so we can limit to those that do.”

Some respondents reported issues related to the display of the results list and the advanced search and work is on-going to resolve these. We were already aware that the Exact Title search was a little too exact – requiring exact matching on punctuation and letter case! Further, the relevancy ranking was not always working as expected, so these are another two areas we are currently concentrating on getting optimised.

The feedback received has been extremely useful in confirming areas we had concerns about and so helping us to prioritise immediate fixes for the next release, while also highlighting other interesting suggestions we can investigate for future releases.

SUNCAT Redevelopment: Focus on Post Search Filters

This is the second in a series of blog posts highlighting some of the new features which will be available in the redeveloped SUNCAT. In this post we are going to focus on how the post search filters will improve the new service, enabling the use of faceted browsing to lead users to the most relevant journal titles and holdings for their needs.

Post search filters will be available from the search results display, down the left hand side of the results list, and will provide similar functionality as you will be familiar with via other discovery services and many commercial shopping and travel websites.

At this point we plan to include the following facets:

  • Institution (the institutions holding the journals returned in the current results list)
  • Format (includes electronic and print formats)
  • Subject
  • Author (organisation associated with journals where relevant)
  • Publisher
  • Year (first published)
  • Place of publication
  • Language
Each filter will also display the number of records in the results set associated with it. The five most common filters from each result set will display for most of the facets, with the option to view decreasingly common filters also available. However, in the case of the institutions facet, filters will be displayed alphabetically to allow you to skim down the list for particular institutions, and in the year facet, filters will be displayed in reverse chronological order.

You will be able to combine filters to drill right down to journal titles matching quite specific criteria, but you will then also be able to simply remove filters to widen your results back up again.

An interesting side effect of displaying the filters is that it is now possible to easily see the variation present in the records supplied to SUNCAT, which goes a long way to explaining why not all the records which we would like to match together do! Part of the next step of the development work will be to try and amalgamate some of the filters so that they display in a more manageable and helpful fashion. For example combining year filters containing no numerical characters, such as “||||”, “uuuu” etc. into one “Unknown” filter. Also publication place filters such as “london”, “London.”, “London,” etc. into one filter for “London”.

You can see the faceted browsing in action on the preview service which will be available until Monday 13th May, so please take a look and let us have your comments via the online survey or by email to

The following screenshot shows the filters on the preview service:

Feedback on the New Look SUNCAT

As we posted a few weeks ago a preview of the new look SUNCAT service is available at and a huge thank you to all who have sent us comments so far.

We’ve now put up a short survey and would be very grateful for your input which will help to guide the ongoing development of the service. If you prefer you can also let us have your comments via the EDINA helpdesk at

We would also encourage you to circulate details of the preview service and the survey as widely as possible.

Both the survey and the preview will only be available until Monday 13th May, but development work will still be continuing and so we will have more posts to keep you up to date with progress.

Please take a few minutes to let us know what you think!

Preview the New Look SUNCAT

Good morning from UKSG 2013! As promised last month the new look SUNCAT is now available for you to preview at

The current service will continue as the primary service for the moment, but we would encourage you to take a look, experiment and let us have your feedback on the new service as soon as you get a chance.

The new service is still in development, so there are still issues to be resolved with keeping it up-to-date, searching and relevancy ranking, but to give you a flavour, the new service:

Integrates information from the website and the actual service more closely, with the search box, a map of our Contributing Libraries and a feed of our latest news all on the homepage

• Enables searching limited to a specific library or selection of libraries: you will only see the serials’ holdings of libraries you have specified in your search

• Enables searching limited to a specific location or selection of locations, all the way from Inverness to Exeter: again you will only see the serials’ holdings in locations you have specified in your search.

• Plus you can combine library and location limits to suit your individual search requirements

• Enables searching limited to electronic or print serials only: helpful if you only want to see what might be immediately available online or conversely if want to see only material likely to be available via Inter-Library Loan.

• Enables filtering of search results by library, location, subject, organisation, publisher, date etc.

• Enables more sophisticated searching via the Advanced Search option

• Allows you to choose how many records you want to display on your search results screen

• Provides an alphabetical list of all the libraries holding a particular serial title

• Allows you to quickly see if holdings are print or electronic

• Opens up further information about each library, including directions, contact details, British Library code and when it was last updated in SUNCAT

If you are attending UKSG, please come along to the EDINA stand 26 and we will be happy to demo the service for you and answer your questions in person. However, you can also let us know what you think or if you have any questions or suggestions via the EDINA helpdesk at

We hope you like what you see!

Digimap Roam gets Carto features

We have introduced a raft of new print options to Digimap Roam;  some of these were previously only available in Carto, others are new altogether:Select your print scale in Digimap Roam

Select your own scale for the printed map (within sensible limits)
Print OS MasterMap at up to 1:100 scale (Carto’s limit is 1:500)
Print at paper sizes up to A0
Print landscape or portrait orientations (not available in Carto)

The new print options along with the formats already available mean that printing from Roam is now more flexible and powerful than Carto.

We have also added an extra zoom level to Roam’s screen maps called Building View. This shows OS MasterMap at around 1:500,  making it easier to add detailed annotations such as new buildings to your map.

OS MasterMap Views in Digimap Roam

© Crown copyright/database right 2013. Ordnance Survey/EDINA supplied service.
Scales shown are the default print scales, screen map scale varies depending on the pixel size of your monitor / device.

With these enhancements Roam can now perform many of the tasks previously only possible with Carto.

Unfortunately, Carto has become difficult to maintain and needs to be replaced. These changes to Roam, along with some extra features planned for the coming months, will enable it to take the place of Carto. Once all the enhancements to Roam are made we will retire Carto completely; we intend to do this at the end of July 2013.

If you have any concerns about the withdrawal of Carto then please let us know:

  • Email:
  • Tel: 0131 650 3302