Services & Policies - Spring 2005

Millennium Silver To Enhance Library System

Innovative Interfaces Inc.(III) is the provider of the Library's "integrated" library system. An "integrated" library system is a single database in which all staff and user transactions are reflected in real time. For example, when a book is ordered, a user looking in the Library's online catalog immediately sees that information. The Millennium system adds another layer of one stop researching with the WebBridge and Metafind features. With WebBridge, a user can go, with a click, from a book in the Library's catalog to a fulltext article in a database. Metafind allows the user to do a single search across a selection, or all, databases and web resources. Each year, Innovative has a new release that adds functions to Millennium or fixes those things that users do not like. With the Silver release, all staff functions are now web based. This special release marks the silver anniversary of III. The cataloging department especially benefits from Silver. We are all used to the point, click, drag functions of the web, but prior to this release, many cataloging functions were character based, a very lock-step process.
Statistical reports are improved in the Silver release. It is a quick process to look at how many books the Library owns in a particular subject area by getting a report for call numbers. What percent of these circulated? What were the majors of those who borrowed them? This kind of analysis is important for assessing the strength of the collection to meet students' needs.
The Library has two servers, one for test and one for production, public use. Silver is now in test. Most of the changes are staff functions and will not be that noticeable to users of Library electronic resources. The Library does not change systems functions during a semester so that users are not inconvenienced.
The next release is called, aptly, 2005. This release has features for storing purchasing information to track Library book orders. Other new features include the number and types of messages the Circulation department can have. For example, Circulation will be able to produce large, bold text banners to place on books to indicate that a book is on hold for someone to pick up. Course reserves will be streamlined so that processing is shorter. Happy news for those eager students who come directly from the classroom to the Library to get those required readings!
Many of Innovative's enhancements are derived from ballots of their users. As with all of our services, the Library is interested in your feedback.
Bonnie Strohl