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Return to Permanent Location Feature

Return to Permanent Location Feature

I would like to know if any other EMu users see a need for a feature in EMu's Relocate Tool that would provide the ability to automatically return objects to their permanent locations. I am presently working with an ARGUS conversion client moving to EMu. Users had relied heavily on that feature in ARGUS; and the museum uses permanent locations consistently.

The idea would be that users could select "return objects to their permanent locations" in the Relocate Tool, then be given a list of the objects' Permanent locations to make any ad-hoc changes (accounting for exceptions in the list--perhaps, one object went to Conservation).

Would that be useful to you other EMu users?

Thanks!

Will

Will Scott
Museum and Computer Consultant

Edited by: - 01-Jan-70 09:00:00

Will Scott
Museum & Database Consulting
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Will Scott (Museum & Database Consultant)
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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

Hi Will

We don't use Permanent Location much at all here at the NGA. Storage space is at a premium, and available space tends to be fairly quickly filled.

If we did use Permanent Location I would very much support your suggestion.

Mark - NGA

Mark Bradley – Assistant Registrar, Documentation (EMu)
National Gallery of Australia

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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

Great suggestion, Will,

I think this would be a really useful facility and would certainly save some time.

We fairly regularly get large numbers of specimens out for demonstrations as part of an undergraduate teaching course. Relocating a large number of specimens to a single location is easy, but then recording that they have been returned to the drawers again is quite tedious, particularly when they come from different areas of the collection.
A tool to be able to 'return to permanent postion' would be immensely useful. It could either work as a copy function, thereby copying the value in the permanent location into the current location field. Or it could in some way employ the audit 'roll-back' facility coming with version 3.2.05.

cheers

Dave

Petrology Collections Manager
Natural History Museum, London

Dave Smith
Earth Sciences Data Manager
Natural History Museum, London

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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

It looks like this feature was requested way back in 2002 by Will Real. Does anyone know if it was implemented for them?
http://www.emuusers.org/Forums/tabid/57 … fault.aspx

Taken from previous post:
---------------------------------------
1. We envisioned a quick way to return a group of objects to
their permanent locations in one move. For example, you could bring up a
group of 50 or so records of objects that have just been in an exhibition in
Gallery 2. Their current location is Gallery 2, and their Permanent
Locations are various (Print Room Cabinet 5 Box 10, and so on--in our case
there could be dozens of unique Permanent Locations for even a small show of
50 items). You could issue a command (click a button, or whatever) that says
"Return Selected Objects to Permanent Location". KE would then carry out the
requested location change for each object. The Current Location would then
display the updated location, in this case the Permanent Location, of each
object.

Your suggestion is a good one, and would be useful in accelerating what is otherwise a slow process. I have added your request to the "List of things to be done".

Scott Williams
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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

Thias very issue has just come up again today.  As Mr Smith said above, movements of a list of objects to a shared lcoation (display space, etc) is really easy - but the movmeents from the one space to multiple destinations is really tedious.  A return to permanent location would be a godsend. We'd also need this in Locatiosn, to allow return to home of solander boxes etc.

Did anything ever eventuate with this? If not, KE - please please please?

Mark Bradley – Assistant Registrar, Documentation (EMu)
National Gallery of Australia

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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

We at Te Papa would certainy like to see this feature implemented. We probably get asked monthly, if not weekly, for this from staff, would be great to tell them it's coming in the next upgrade.

Cheers

Adrian Kingston
Collections Information Manager, Digital Assets and Development
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

Adrian Kingston
Collection Information Manager, Digital Assets and Development
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
collections.tepapa.govt.nz

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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

In theory it sounds good but I always get nervous when updating location data and not physically sighting the move. The feature would; be handy providing that staff were confident that all items were in fact being returned.



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E   nladas@museum.vic.gov.au
W   museumvictoria.com.au

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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

A version of this feature was implemented as a customization for Penn Museum. It works like the Relocate Tool, except the Location field is hidden in the Relocate dialogue box. The new location is determined by a Permanent Location field on the Location Tab for each record.

In reviewing this discussion, I did some additional testing of the Tool and found a couple of things that need to be addressed. If you have ideas on how these cases might best be handled, please post them.

1. Objects in a selected list that have no Permanent Location are simply ignored. No update is performed. I would prefer the tool fail with a useful error stating that all objects selected must have a Permanent Location. A softer approach would be to let the process complete but produce an error at completion stating which objects were not updated. I like the former option since it encourages prior review of Permanent Locations.

2. Objects with a Permanent Location that is the same as the Current Location should be checked. A prompt stating that fact along with the relevant IRNs would be helpful. Again, I prefer a stricter approach that would not allow the tool to complete until the situation is resolved. If that gets too much in the way for some institutions, the softer approach might be to provide a warning that allows the choice to continue or cancel.

3. (Added after initial post) If we want to get a bit more robust with this feature, it would be helpful to have a "block" list of locations, perhaps in the Registry or directly in the Locations Module. This would prevent an object from being returned to an "Unknown" or "Missing" type of location, for example, using Return to Permanent Locations. (Not that I have ever encountered a museum that did not know the precise location of each and every object  ;) ). There may be other uses for this option, as well, including other generic locations and deprecated locations. Those terms could be blocked from being entered into the Permanent Location field, instead of blocked by the tool, except some may come over from data conversion prior to configuring that validation or may have been entered prior. If any blocked locations are encountered, an error message should be produced.

I agree with earlier caveats about relying too heavily on the assumption that a Permanent Location is actually persistent. There is, in fact, no such thing as a truly permanent location. That said, similar features have proven useful when handled by responsible users. In ARGUS, this feature would display a list of accession numbers in a table alongside each object's permanent location. At that step, users could review that the destination locations were correct or edit the locations if they were not correct. In EMu, I think a user-customized List View showing object number, current location, and permanent location could serve the same purpose. Users could check that prior to running Return to Permanent Locations.

Will Scott
Museum & Database Consultant
New York, NY / Philadelphia, PA

Edited by: Will Scott (Museum & Database Consultant) - 21-Oct-12 09:30:53

Will Scott
Museum & Database Consulting
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Re: Return to Permanent Location Feature

Regarding #2 in my last post, Scott Williams made a good case for allowing objects to be returned to their permanent location when the permanent location matches the current location. In the case of an inventory this tool might be used to update the location metadata (date, done by, notes) for records, confirming that the selected objects were found at their anticipated, permanent, location. I still lean toward providing an error message, but it should be for the group (not for each object encountered) and should allow the user to tell it to continue regardless of the warning.

Will Scott
Museum & Database Consulting
www.willscottconsulting.com

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