Library Technology Guides

Documents, Databases, News, and Commentary

Library Technology Guides provides comprehensive and objective information surrounding the many different types of technology products and services used by libraries. It covers the organizations that develop and support library-oriented software and systems. The site offers extensive databases and document repositories to assist libraries as they consider new systems and is an essential resource for professionals in the field to stay current with new developments and trends. Relevent news items are posted daily on Twitter:

GuidePosts

Perspective and commentary by Marshall Breeding

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Library Systems Report 2015: Operationalizing innovation

Photo of Marshall Breeding author of GuidePosts
Library Systems Report

The 2015 edition of the annual industry report that I have produced since 2002 has been published by American Libraries. The online version is available now and the feature will appear in the May 2015 print issue. The 2002 through 2013 editions of this report were published by Library Journal.

Following a period of intensive development, a slate of new products that aims to align with current strategic priorities has entered a new phase of broader implementation. Index-based discovery services, available since 2009, have become vital components of academic library infrastructure and continue to see strong sales, including both first-time implementations and churn from competitors.

Library services platforms, in production use since 2011, have passed into the realm of routine offerings, especially for academic libraries in desperate need of systems that can manage both electronic and print resources. Many public libraries facing intense demand to present more modern and dynamic services to their communities and deliver seamless access to ebook collections are ready to upgrade or replace incumbent products with ones better able to fulfill current realities and expectations. With broader acceptance of cloud technologies, more libraries are opting for software as a service (SaaS) deployments, especially when they have fewer technical resources to support local implementations.

While libraries are able to risk adopting technologies in earlier stages of development, a broader contingent now expects to implement proven and reliable products. Products considered innovative or pioneering two years ago must now be ready for routine operational implementation in order for these products to succeed in this phase of concerted sales.

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May 2, 2015 07:28:36

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Come see Marshall Breeding at Computers in Libraries 2015

Computers in Libraries

I'll be in Washington, DC soon for the annual Computers in Libraries conference, speaking on a variety of topics. I'm looking forward to seeing lots of friends and colleagues. Please feel free to track me down and introduce yourself or follow me through Twitter (@mbreeding). Here is my speaking schedule for the conference:

W6 – Library Resource Management: Strategies, Technologies, and Practices

Preconference Workshop, Sunday April 26, 2015 9:00 AM – 12:00 Noon

Library collections today have become more complex than ever, with proportions of electronic and digital resources increasing relative to print and other physical materials. To manage these complex, multiformat collections, libraries need to consider many different options, both in the technology tools used and in their operational workflows. Many different types of technical options are available for libraries to manage their collections and operations, including traditional integrated library systems and a new generation of library services platforms, with open source and commercially licensed options and locally installed or cloud-based deployment possibilities. This half-day workshop explores the realm of library resource management technologies, helping attendees understand the relative strengths of each of the many alternatives and which automation scenarios may be most appropriate to pursue for their library. Filled with real-world examples, this workshop presents many possible strategies, technologies, and possibilities for managing library collections.

C101– Library Technology Industry Update

Monday, april 27, 2015
10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

Libraries worldwide spend almost $2 billion/year on technology products and services and are constantly considering prudent strategic technology investments. Author of the “Automation Marketplace” industry report published in Library Journal from 2002–2013 and the “Library Systems Report” published by American Libraries since 2014, Breeding has the incredible ability to explain the current state of the industry and what we need to watch for in the future to factor into our technology decisions today.

Decades of Innovation and Tips for the Future

Tuesday Evening Session:, april 28, 2015 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.

Marshall Breeding, Independent Consultant, Founder of Library Technology Guides
Jason Griffey, Founder & Principal Consultant, Evenly Distributed LLC
Meg Backus, IT Manager, Anchorage Public Library
Jan Holmquist, Assistant Library Director, Guldborgsund Public Library
Darlene Fichter, GovInfo Librarian, University of Saskatchewan Library

Libraries have experienced incredible change since the first small Computers in Libraries Conference thirty years ago. The realm of library technology likewise has seen dramatic transformation. Breeding, whose career has paralleled CIL, highlights some of the interesting, amusing, and important touchstones marked by this important annual conference. He offers tips on how to stay relevant over time through continual innovation! A panel then presents some technologies we need to be watching over the next few years!

Apr 12, 2015 09:26:51

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The Future of Library Resource Discovery

The Future of Library Resource Discovery

The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) has published the white paper that I developed on the Future of Library Resource Discovery. I appreciate the opportunity to perform some additional research on this topic and to examine a variety of related issues. The paper provides an environmental scan of the current discovery environment, identifies gaps in the current products and services, and suggests some areas for future development. Given the current environment dominated by commercial services, I explored the possibilities of open source discovery interfaces and open access central indexes. The paper discusses linked data and other techniques which offer potential opportunities for improving the discoverability of resources of interest to libraries so that their community members might find them even when they bypass the interfaces provided by the library. Finally, the paper makes some recommendations regarding a possible next phase of the Open Discovery Initiative and highlights some areas of interest in the discovery arena that NISO may want to explore in the future. From the NISO press release:

The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) has published a white paper, The Future of Library Resource Discovery, written by independent consultant, speaker, and author Marshall Breeding. The white paper was commissioned by NISO's Discovery to Delivery (D2D) Topic Committee as part of its ongoing examination of areas in the discovery landscape that the information community could potentially standardize. Included in the paper is an overview of the current discovery environment; descriptions of how these technologies, methodologies, and products may be able to adapt to potential future change; and a look beyond current models of discovery to explore possible alternatives, especially those related to linked data.

The recent Electronic Resources and Libraries conference in Austin, TX, included a session to announce the publication of the white paper in which I presented a summary of its findings.

The paper is available as a free download from NISO.

Feb 24, 2015 10:11:04

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Perceptions 2014: An International Survey of Library Automation

Selected Survey Findings: Top Performers
Polaris continues to receive top ratings in all categories from large public libraries and in the general satisfaction, overall product functionality, and print functionality among medium-sized public libraries.
Apollo from Biblionix received top ratings in all categories from small and very small public libraries.
Alma from Ex Libris received top ratings from large academic libraries in the management of electronic resources, customer support, and customer loyalty. Ex Libris Aleph scored best among large academic libraries for print functionality and overall product satisfaction.
Sierra from Innovative interfaces received top ratings from large and mid-sized academic libraries for overall product functionality.
OCLC WorldShare Management Services received top ratings from mid-sized academic libraries general product satisfaction, in functionality for managing electronic resources, for product support, and company loyalty.
Small academic libraries rated Koha (managed independent of a support firm) highest in overall product functionality, management of print materials, and for product support.
Library.Solution from The Library Corporation received top ratings from mid-sized public libraries for product support.
School libraries rated OPALS most positively in response to all survey questions.

I have posted the results the eighth annual survey of data collected on how libraries rate their current integrated library system, the company involved, and the quality of customer support. Perceptions 2014: an international survey of library automation gives the general conclusions and presents all the statistical results derived from the survey. As usual, some of the most interesting and valuable information lies in the comments offered by responders.

"Libraries make major investments in strategic automation products, both during the initial implementation period and in annual fees paid for support, software maintenance, and other services. They depend on these products for efficient management of their daily operations and to provide access to their collections and services. This survey report allows libraries to benefit from the perceptions of their peers regarding the quality of automation systems and of the performance of the organizations involved in their development or support."

Just as I did for the previous editions survey, I created an interactive tool for viewing the statistical summaries and comments. The main tables in the article show statistics only for those products that had more than 15 survey responses. You can use the ILS Product Report to view the statistics on any of the products mentioned in the survey and to read the comments about that system, even if the number of responses did not meet the threshold. The comments that display have been edited to remove any text that identifies the individual or institution, preserving the anonymity of the responders. The narrative data in the comments largely corroborate the statistical responses and makes for interesting reading.

Feb 10, 2015 13:09:05

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Caveat and Credit

Library Technology Guides was created and is edited by Marshall Breeding. He is solely responsible for all content on this site, and for any errors it may contain. Please notify him if you find any errors or omissions. (off)

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Industry News

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Full Automation News Report

20 most recent items:


May 1, 2015. Feature selection special event for Oklahoma Library Association Conference. Biblionix announced the “OLA Conference (Oklahoma Library Association) Apollo Automation” feature selection event. This exciting new event took place within this week of the OLA Conference. It allowed ... <<more>>


May 1, 2015. Rocky Ford School District goes live on the CLiC AspenCat LibLime Koha union catalog. Rocky Ford School District has now joined the Colorado Library Consortium (CLiC) AspenCat LibLime Koha union catalog for all collection and patron management services. With the addition of the Rocky F ... <<more>>


May 1, 2015. EBSCO Information Services continues collaboration with OASIS. Following the upcoming acquisition of Coutts by ProQuest, EBSCO Information Services (EBSCO) plans to continue its relationship with OASIS, enabling libraries to purchase its selection of more than 70 ... <<more>>


May 1, 2015. BDS Partners with PTFS Europe. BDS and open source library management systems supplier PTFS Europe have struck a metadata supply deal that will see libraries working with PTFS Europe also able to benefit from BDS’s industry-leading ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. Ex Libris Acquires oMbiel, a Leading Provider of Mobile Campus Solutions. Ex Libris has expanded its product portfolio by acquiring oMbiel, a leading UK-based SaaS platform provider of mobile and portal solutions for higher education. campusM, oMbiel’s flagship product, en ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. EBSCO and Baratz partner to enhance library discovery in Spain. A partnership between EBSCO Information Services and Spanish ILS editor, Baratz, will expand services to discovery customers in Spain and other markets, specifically Latin America and France. The col ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. Follett Challenge Announces 2015 Winner. Follett Corporation announced the winners of the fourth annual Follett Challenge, which empowers innovation and rewards ground-breaking educational programs. O’Neill Middle School in Downers Grove Sc ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. ProQuest to acquire Coutts Information Services and MyiLibrary from Ingram Content Group. ProQuest has signed an agreement to acquire Coutts Information Services from Ingram Content Group, adding Coutts’ renowned expertise in collection development, broad catalog of print and digital title ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. Fletcher Free Library (VT) selects the Polaris ILS. Innovative announced today that Fletcher Free Library in Burlington, VT has selected the Polaris ILS. The library contains 143,000 items and circulated nearly 400,000 items in 2014. The Library will b ... <<more>>


April 30, 2015. Museum Hill Libraries choose ByWater Solutions’ Koha Support. ByWater Solutions announced that the Museum of International Folk Art and Museum of Indian Arts and Culture Libraries in Santa Fe, New Mexico are now live with their installation of the Koha open sour ... <<more>>


April 28, 2015. Hoseo University Library switches to EBSCO Discovery Service from Ex Libris Primo Central. Hoseo University Library in Cheonan, South Korea has selected EBSCO Discovery Service (EDS) to provide students and faculty with upgraded access to its library collection. The library, which had been ... <<more>>


Full Automation News Report