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New Round of Enhancements for WilsonWeb Database Service

Posted Jul 23, 2009
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H.W. Wilson has announced a new round of enhancements for the interface and the features of several of its most popular databases. The latest platform improvements make content available to a wider range of users, provide new customization options, and add tools to the "My WilsonWeb" personal user accounts within WilsonWeb. Improvements to specific WilsonWeb databases include the Cinema Image Gallery, Biography Reference Bank, and Current Issues databases.


WilsonWeb platform enhancements encompass the following:


The ReadSpeaker text-to-speech converter—added to WilsonWeb full-text periodical databases with the prior platform update—now works on WilsonWeb biography databases as well, including Biography Reference Bank. Users can now also select male or female voice. ReadSpeaker text-to-speech makes WilsonWeb content accessible to users with low vision, dyslexia, physical handicaps or other challenges to standard reading, as well as those who would like to download articles to iPods or other portable devices for listening as they relax, commute, or exercise.


"My WilsonWeb"--space for individual user accounts within WilsonWeb--now lets users create folders for organizing saved content, and store personal notes such as plans and reminders of the significance of articles. "My WilsonWeb" interface customization options have also been expanded: users can now pick and choose the fields they want to display in article records. Additionally, you can now print, email, save, auto-format citations, and export records all from within your "My WilsonWeb" account.


WilsonWeb's article translation tool now converts articles published in German, French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese into English. WilsonWeb also translates English-language articles into Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Korean, Japanese, Russian, Arabic and Dutch.


The interface language translator has expanded to include most standard buttons, links and fields. A special dropdown menu converts the interface from the default English into German, French, Italian, Spanish or Portuguese.


Accessibility enhancements for the visually impaired include a "Skip Links" feature that lets electronic readers ignore links that repeat at the top of each page. There's also a new Text Size zoom feature that lets users increase the interface text size beyond their browser's settings.


Administrators can now add icons for each User Class they create, personalizing WilsonWeb for their various clientele.


Database-specific enhancements include:


Cinema Image Gallery now has an additional display option. Film records that feature multiple images can now be viewed as a "slideshow," saving users the trouble of opening and closing each image.


Current Issues databases (Current Issues: Reference Shelf Plus, Current Issues: Health, and Current Issues: Environment) include new "Comment(s)" links, inviting users to share their own information and insights on the issues with other users of these databases worldwide.


WilsonWeb biography databases--including the acclaimed Biography Reference Bank and Current Biography resources--now feature an image of the profile subject (if available) and a handy "Back to Main Biography Page" link on the subject's "Most Recent Articles" and "Books About" and "Books By" pages.


Other WilsonWeb enhancements are listed at

Source: H.W. Wilson,

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