AskAway Blog

Schedule for upcoming brown-bag "lunch" presentations!

Topic: Can't Cobrowse?

  • Outline: 3 technical tips that help get cobrowse working, plus my own method for helping patrons who can't cobrowse. Feel free to share your own tips!
  • Time: Monday, July 9th, 2:15-2:45 (***Different time of day!***)

Topic: Orientation to the Douglas College Library Website

  • Presenter: Dianne Hewitt
  • Time: Monday, July 16th, 12:15-12:45

Topic: Online Map Resources

More on Java

When reading the previous post I thought I'd be immune to the Java problem as I'd originally downloaded version1.5 and all has been well to date. Unfortunately, Java updated automatically to the 1.6 tonight, in the middle of my shift and not only could I not co-browse, but the system slowed down to a crawl and it ultimately took me 9 minutes to shut my computer down and restart it. I will try to delete the dud upgrade asap - but just wanted to let everyone know that you might find your system has been updated without your knowledge!
Shawnna P. AskAway/UBC/GAA

Not Picking Up Calls?

A number of librarians over the past two terms have reported that occasionally some librarians appear not to be picking up calls, leaving other folks staffing the service to handle two or three calls at a time. This could be for a number of reasons, the most likely being that these librarians are unaware of technical issues preventing them from seeing calls coming in. To prevent this from happening:

Brown-bag Lunch: Education Resources

Want to know more about Education Resources?
AskAway's 15th brown-bag lunch will be on the topic: Education Resources, presented by Jo-Anne Naslund of UBC library.
The presentation will take place Monday, June 25th, 12:15 to 12:45. A recording will be made for those unable to attend at that time.
Recordings can be accessed at:

Java Update breaks cobrowse

Here is a message from OCLC:
There is a technical issue with the new Sun Java Runtime Environment (JRE) version 6 (also known as JRE1.6.x) that will prevent you from successfully establishing a connection to the cobrowse server.
If you have Sun Java JRE 1.6 already installed, please uninstall it immediately following these steps:
1. Click on Start
2. Click on Control Panel
3. Click on Add/Remove Programs
4. Highlight by clicking on the entry for Java(tm) SE Runtime Environment 6 Update 1
5. Click Remove

UBC Rewriting Proxy and Cobrowse

There has been progress in being able to cobrowse in a UBC licensed resource using an authentication method called the Rewriting Proxy. Here’s what you do:
1) After launching cobrowse, take the student to the Rewriting Proxy login page at:
2) Have the student login using the Campus Wide Login (CWL).
3) You can then navigate into a licensed database or ejournal.

Sample Questions added to Viewport

As suggested by AskAway patrons, a list of sample questions has just been linked from the viewport (i.e. the page that patrons see when they ask a question on AskAway).
There are two kinds, Sample Questions and Sample Questions for which we can provide limited assistance.
If you'd like to see them, here is the link:

Brown-bag lunch: Virtual Reference Wiki Pilot Project

Askaway's 14th brown-bag lunch session will introduce the Virtual Reference Wiki Pilot Project.
The Virtual Reference Wiki was created by LIBR 530 students at UBC's SLAIS, and currently contains 16 subject guides specifically designed for the virtual reference environment
AskAway staff are currently adding some multi-disciplinary guides, such as a list of open-access databases.
The brown-bag lunch will cover:

Recording of brown-bag lunch: Orientation to the TWU Library Website

A recording of the Askaway Brown-bag lunch presentation:
Orientation to the TWU Library Website
is now available on the Askaway portal:
To view the recordings, you will need a browser that has the Flash Player plugin (IE or Firefox work best), and a pair of headphones or speakers.
Thanks very much to William Badke of TWU for his time and effort in creating this presentation!